How to Stay Busy When You Have Down Time at Work "Sometimes I just stare at my desk, but it looks like I am working," is one of the most infamous quotes from the beloved comedy, Office Space. It makes us laugh because it rings true--at least a little for most of us. We all have downtime at work on occasion. Sometimes our busy hours are seasonal, or sometimes the hustle and bustle comes in waves. Here are some ideas to keep you busy during your down time and help you stand out as a productive employee even when business is slow. First, no matter how little you feel you have to do right now, create a to-do list. Sit down and create a list of potential projects. You'd be surprised how much you may be able to come up with to do on top of your normal workload. Get creative and think of ways to improve [...]
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How to Manage Back-to-School as a Working Parent During Covid-19 With cases of Covid-19 rising across the nation, most schools are reopening virtually this fall while workers continue to work from home. It will be difficult for working parents to strike a balance juggling the demands of parenting while meeting demands at work. Managing projects and sticking to deadlines is hard enough on a normal basis; let alone try doing it while also tending to children who are schooling from home. In order to be successful when schools reopen virtually, it’s important to set boundaries. Create a schedule to plan your days ahead. Plan when to start to your work day, and when you can take breaks to help your child(ren) with their schooling. This will require some planning, self-discipline, and effective time management skills. The key to making back-to-school and working remote a cohesive success is to developing a support system and set reasonable [...]
Imagine that you are competing for a position, and you bring the same skill set as other applicants, which are the minimum requirements for the job… But one applicant really stands out because they spend their free time at a charity, helping the community, and gaining experience with a non-profit organization. Who do you think would be more likely to get the job? With everything going on in the world, now more than ever, corporations and businesses are putting a big emphasis on social issues and activism. A person who works in a volunteer group develops unique skills and experiences that are often applicable in the workplace. By doing volunteer work, you’ll meet new people and grow your network. You may also be inspired, learn new skills, and discover what you’re good at, which will all potentially help you find a career that you are passion about. Volunteering is so important that LinkedIn, the number [...]
Some of us are more gifted with talents and acquired skills than others. But, that doesn't automatically give a person a better shot at their professional success than others. In fact, in my life I have met many exceptionally talented people who failed to be successful because they didn't apply themselves in the ways that they should. These are things that you can do to set yourself apart that require no talent. These qualities are highly valued and will contribute to your success in whatever you choose to do in life. Show a sincere passion for your work. If you show a genuine passion for what you do, you will ultimately be more successful. When you are truly passionate about something, you will be inspired and driven to succeed. When you really care about what you do, you will be much more likely to apply yourself and produce your best work. Always be prepared. It [...]
5 Things Successful People Don’t Say Our thoughts and the things we say have a direct correlation with our success. Negative thoughts and self-talk have no place in a successful person’s mind. In order to be successful, you must have an unrelenting can-do attitude. Your attitude and thoughts are reflected in your actions and the things you say. These are 5 things that successful people do not say. 1. “I can’t.” Successful people never say “I can’t.” If anyone else has ever done it before, then you can do it too. You may need to learn new skills, push yourself, and work hard, but to say you cannot do something is only a lie you tell yourself. In place of saying you can’t, say ‘I’ve never done this before, but I would love to learn.’ Learning new skills keeps life interesting and helps you to grow. Only when someone is afraid or too lazy to [...]
Success can be defined differently to different people. It’s a personal definition, but there are habits that all successful people follow. Success is not a destination; it’s a journey. These habits that can help you along your journey to success: Be purposeful Do not waste time on things that do not help you achieve your goals or be successful. Start every day with a purpose or intention. If an activity or thought isn’t in line with your purpose, learn to let it go. Go after your purpose. It’s not enough to set an intention—you have to actively try to achieve your goals every day. Learn from mistakes All successful people have made mistakes and experienced failure. The best way to learn is by objectively looking back on your failures and gain wisdom from them. Think about what you would do different next time, and how you can avoid future pitfalls. Establish a routine We all [...]
Networking is an important piece of our professional development, and we all need to adapt to the “new normal” way to network during social distancing. For many of us, virtual connections and relationship building is new. We used to be able to meet coworkers at the water cooler, or in face to face meetings. So, meeting other professionals digitally may require you to go outside of your comfort zone. Here are some tips to help you effectively network during this time of social distancing. Set Goals First, think about your reason for networking. What do you want to achieve? Do you want to learn from someone who has an impressive skillset, would you like a mentor, or do you just want a friend to support you professionally? How often would you like to network, and with whom? Once you set your goals, you can come up with a plan. Plan Plan for creative ways to [...]
How to Become More Agile According to Aaron De Smet, a senior partner at McKinsey & Company, agility requires stability. The two go hand in hand. This may sound counter intuitive, but in fact, the one constant thing in business is change. De Smet states, “Agility is the ability of an organization to renew itself, adapt, change quickly, and succeed in a rapidly changing, ambiguous, turbulent environment.” It’s more important now than ever to be agile in this changing business world as we adapt to a new normal. In order to be agile, you must be able to adapt and move fast within the margins of your company’s stable foundation. Right now, there are many changes coming from all directions inside and outside of organizations. To be agile, you must learn to thrive on change and become stronger through the changes; like a rock becomes smoother under pressure. If you can master the skill of [...]
Are Your References Current? When candidates are looking for a new job, many people forget to plan for one very important piece of the job application--their employment references. Make yourself stand out and plan for this major piece of the application process. Your references can be the make or break point for a hiring manager’s decision between you and another candidate. That’s why it’s so important to keep your references current. Plan Ahead for your References Don’t wait until you’re desperate for a job to search out people who will advocate for you. Before you even start looking for a job, you should develop relationships at work and build a reputation for yourself that will inspire others to speak positively on your behalf. Work like every day is an interview, and treat every coworker like they could be your next boss. After you finish working on a successful project with someone, reach out to them [...]
Spring Cleaning Isn't Just for the Home... Spring symbolizes new beginnings, fresh starts, planting seeds, new growth, and it's the time of year where we traditionally focus on cleaning things out. Take this time to "spring clean" your professional profile and refresh your career! Give your professional side a fresh polish, assess your career, kickstart a new opportunity, breathe new life into your LinkedIn profile, and take steps toward your career growth. Here are 3 Steps to "Spring Clean" Your Career: Assess Your Current State - Give yourself an honest review about where you are, where you want to be, and think about what areas need improvement. Does your professional profile need a (metaphorical) fresh coat of paint? Do you need to clean up your online professional presence? Do your professional skills need a refresh? Are you making enough money? Do you really feel fulfilled in your professional career? Take this time to do an [...]