Top Tips For Class of 2021 Entering the Job Market In A COVID World

Graduates entering the job market in 2021 are faced with new and unusual challenges. When companies shut down or moved their workers to remote work due to the pandemic, the job market changed and now looks very different than it did just a few years ago.

Entering the job market

Many people are still working from home and may continue to do so for a long time to come. Meetings are online through video chats. And collaborative work is done through apps and software programs instead of around a workstation.

Top Tips For Entering the Job Market

While some may thrive in this kind of job market, others may struggle. Here are the best tips for 2021 graduates preparing to enter the job market.

1. Prepare For A Long Job Search

Hiring and onboarding new employees is slower than usual right now. With many department heads working from home, it’s taking longer than expected to process applications, schedule and conduct interviews virtually, make offers, and onboard new employees.

Be patient. If there’s a job you’re interested in, talk to the HR manager to find out the timeline for filling the position. Don’t assume the worst if it takes longer than expected. According to a Forbes article, “Think of your career as a marathon—not a sprint. ”

2. Prepare To Work From Home

Working remotely is more common now, and many companies are choosing to reduce their overhead and continue to let employees work remotely on a permanent basis. Recognize that this may be a job requirement and start preparing for how you’ll manage that.

You’ll need a quiet workspace where you won’t be interrupted, a computer, and a strong internet connection at the least. Some companies will require you to install their own software and join online work sites for collaboration with coworkers. Remember working from home can contribute to promotions and success too.

Be honest with yourself and potential employers regarding whether you can comply with their requirements for working from home.

3. Do Your Research

With some companies struggling to get back to their full earning potential, you may be offered a lower salary than you’d expect. Do your research and find out what the starting salary is for a position you’re looking for, set up job alerts through work search sites, and keep your options open.

This may be an excellent time to learn some negotiation skills as well. While your salary offer may be lower, you may be able to negotiate extra time off or additional benefits in exchange for a higher salary.

4. Apply For Help

With the hiring process taking longer than usual, you may find yourself in a financial bind. Federal, state, and local governments are offering a variety of relief efforts to help.

You can find help with financial aid, food and meals, delayed rent and mortgage payments, and deferred student loans.

5. Consider An Interim Job

Consider looking for an “in-between” job to get you through. Many retail stores and restaurants are in desperate need of staff, and the income can help you get through until you find a permanent job.

Plus, having some kind of job experience on your resume and proving that you’re willing to work even if it’s not your ideal job will impress your future employer.

The 2021 job market is unique for recent graduates with little or no experience. Take your time, do your research, and find a temporary job to hold you over. The right job will come along; it just may take a little longer.

Do You Need Career Search or Interview Help?

If you need help updating your resume to include all of your qualifications, practicing for an interview, or organizing your job search information during these challenging times, consider reaching out to Rachel Schneider, CPC at Career Find to assist you.

By |2021-06-14T17:34:34-05:00June 8th, 2021|career search, Job Search|Comments Off on Top Tips For Class of 2021 Entering the Job Market In A COVID World

Is Gender Discrimination Still Happening?

Is gender discrimination a thing of the past?

It’s 2021, and women are making great strides in the business world. Women are CEOs of international billion-dollar companies; they serve their country as military commanders or political leaders. They are thought-leaders and successful business owners. With all these strides in job equality, is gender discrimination really still a thing?

Gender Discrimination

The short answer is, sadly, yes. Unfortunately, women are still discriminated against in the workforce and receive less pay for the same job that men do. (That isn’t fair!)

The problem lies in our societal beliefs. For all of our advances forward, there is still a stigma about what women should do. Women are natural caregivers, so they’re expected to raise the children, cook the meals, and clean the house. Society frowns on and even laughs at men who take on these traditional parenting and household roles. Unfortunately, society as a whole still believes that men should be the breadwinners and women should care for the family.

Gender Stereotypes

These gender stereotypes conflict with what is expected in leadership roles. In the workplace, many feel men can likely work longer hours and be more aggressive when it comes to sales, while women need to end their shift at five so they can go home and make dinner. Any potential employer who thinks this way is less likely to hire a woman for a job that the employer thinks a man is better suited for.

But, since you can’t turn someone down for a job based on their gender, the employer will decide that the man is “more qualified” for the position.  (Another reason for making sure your resume is up to date and includes all your qualifications!)

How Can We Help Eliminate Gender Discrimination?

What can we do as a society and as individuals to solve the problem? These ideas might help.

Be Aware

Gender bias is not as relevant as it once was, but it still exists. Companies need to offer awareness training on this topic, and individuals need to be aware of their own biases and learn to recognize their shortcomings. Harvard University offers an Implicit Association Test that allows you to test your own biases.

Change Your Attitude

As long as men are seen as weak for taking on parenting and household roles traditionally held by women, far fewer men will take on these roles. Being a stay-at-home parent taking care of your family is one of the most complex and challenging jobs anyone can do, and they should be positively recognized for their work. On the flip side, women should be recognized for the hard work, experience, and knowledge they bring to their careers in the workforce.

Get Involved

The only authentic way to eliminate gender discrimination is to make changes. And those changes need to come from state and federal governments. There need to be stronger laws about equal pay and discrimination of any kind. We have to stop assessing job candidates on gender and allow for gender-blind applications. By doing so,  all candidates will be judged on their qualifications and experience and provided an equal opportunity.

We also need to make male parenting roles equal. By creating a paternity leave policy it would allow both parents to spend time and bond with their newborn.  At the same time it will help both spouses adjust to the changes a baby brings to their home.

Educate Yourself on Gender Discrimination

You can make a change by educating yourself on discrimination, contacting your government representatives, and speaking with your company’s HR department about training.

Do You Need Career Search or Interview Help?

If you need help updating your resume to include all of your qualifications, practicing for an interview, or organizing your job search information during these challenging times, consider reaching out to Rachel Schneider, CPC at Career Find to assist you.

By |2021-06-14T17:34:43-05:00May 25th, 2021|Career Success|Comments Off on Is Gender Discrimination Still Happening?

Top 10 Tips For Better Communication

The ability to communicate clearly is essential in your professional and personal life. Without clear communication, misunderstandings occur.  Improving your communication skills will help you succeed on the job and in the community. According to Incorp, “Employees can experience increased morale, productivity, and commitment if they can communicate up and down a company’s communication chain.”  Are you currently comfortable communicating with those in all positions in your company?

Better Communication

 

Tips For Better Communication

If you want to get ahead in life, then use the 10 tips below to improve your communication skills.

Keep It Simple

Whether you are communicating verbally or in writing the key is to keep what you are trying to communicate plain, simple, and easy to understand. Don’t overwhelm your audience with fancy language or technical jargon unless you are giving an academic talk and it is totally necessary.

Make Notes

Creating notes will help you plan what you want to say. You’ll be able to ensure that you include all the points you want to make and that you eliminate anything that is totally unnecessary. When giving a speech your notes will keep you on point throughout the talk and avoid you going blank in the middle of your message.

Engaged Listening

Surprisingly, being an engaged listener is an important communication skill. It ensures that the speaker knows that you are both listening and interested in what they are saying. Many of us have difficulty focusing on listening.  We often are too busy thinking about what we are going to say next.  Listening will help you to give an informed response as you will be able to demonstrate that you have listened and understood what was said.

Body Language

Your body can say things without you ever saying a word.  In fact, It can be saying the exact opposite of your words!  If you want to ensure that you are giving the right impression and message, then you need to make sure that you stand upright with your head high and shoulders back. Don’t cross your arms as this will put a block between you and the person you are talking to.  Pay attention to your body language.

Be Confident

Confidence is a state of mind and it is something that you can create. There are many ways you can increase your self-confidence. Consider using affirmations and visualization on a daily basis or use hypnosis, coaching, or neuro-linguistic programming.  Finding ways to become more confident will help in all areas of your life.

Small Talk

If you find yourself struggling to communicate effectively during social situations, you can use the FORD technique to help you get a meaningful conversation started. FORD stands for Family, Occupation, Recreation, and Dreams. Talk to them about each of these items and you will appear to be a great conversationalist and others will want to talk with you. Using this technique, you’ll no longer have to feel tongue-tied when you meet strangers.

Use Eye Contact

Using eye contact correctly can really improve your communication. Your audience will feel a greater connection with you and listen more intently. Holding attention is a key skill of a great communicator. Remember to be natural and not to stare as that will have a negative impact.

Pause

Before you start talking or reply, take a breath and pause. This gives you time to think about how you want to respond, calm your emotions and manage your tone of voice. By using a pause, you can make sure that you respond in the way you mean to, instead of saying the wrong thing.

Ask Questions

This will show that you are listening to the other person and that you are paying close attention to what they are saying. You will also increase the sense of rapport between you. By asking questions you ensure that you understand what is said and can respond appropriately. If necessary, don’t be afraid to repeat back what the speaker has said to increase your understanding.

“Say What You Mean, Mean What You Say”

That old saying contains very sage advice. By ensuring that you follow it you will avoid misunderstandings and your message will be relayed with clarity. Of course, you’ll find on occasion that you need to be assertive and prepared to stick to your guns. However, the upside is you will gain the other person’s respect if you are honest and tactful.

Do You Need Help?

If you need help updating your resume, practicing for an interview, or organizing your job search information during these challenging times, consider reaching out to Rachel Schneider, CPC at Career Find to assist you.

By |2021-06-14T17:34:50-05:00May 11th, 2021|Career Success|Comments Off on Top 10 Tips For Better Communication

How to Deal with Age Discrimination

It may seem that we’re living in a more progressive world and discrimination of any kind in the workplace isn’t as prevalent, but that would be wrong. Discrimination is still very much at play in companies, and age discrimination is no different.

Age Discrimination

 

You’d think when you reach a certain age, and you’ve worked hard and have plenty of experience and knowledge, you’d be an asset to your company. But more and more older employees are being replaced with younger ones and even computers.  Age discrimination involves treating an applicant or employee less favorably because of his or her age and is against the law. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) forbids age discrimination against people who are age 40 or older.

According to AARP, Age discrimination in the workplace persists as a serious and pervasive problem.

Age Discrimination Danger Signs

How do you know if you’re being discriminated against? Here are a few signs:

  • Younger employees are offered promotions, educational resources, or special perks over older employees.
  • You have been overlooked for a particular assignment or project, or you’ve been assigned unpleasant or tedious tasks over and over while others are getting the best projects.
  • You are left out of important client or employee meetings or company activities.
  • Employees, including managers, have made jokes about your age or maturity, asked about your retirement plans, or made pointed comments about your age or abilities.
  • You’ve been passed over for raises and promotions that you’ve rightly earned.
  • You’re not entitled to as much time off as younger employees because you don’t have kids at home.

How To Fight Age Discrimination

If you’ve experienced any of these things, age discrimination may be at play in your workplace. Here are a few things you can do to fight it:

 Don’t Assume Fairness

Don’t assume your workplace is always fair and that there are other factors at play for you being overlooked. Look deeper, even if the comments or actions are directed at another employee. Try to see the situation from a neutral perspective or talk to someone outside your company who can be impartial and honest about what’s happening.

Push yourself to do better.

Read, take courses, stay up-to-date on trends in the marketplace, and find a mentor to inspire you. Don’t give your employer any reason to pass you over. If you work hard, have the experience and knowledge to handle something, there should be no question about your ability.

Don’t give them ammunition.

Don’t make jokes about your age, and don’t coast through your job without learning anything new or being willing to advance yourself. If you do this, you encourage age discrimination within your company; you feed their beliefs about older workers. A company doesn’t owe you anything for your years of service. You have to earn your promotions and raises on your merits.

Be Professional

Maintain professionalism at all times. Present yourself as polished, confident, and knowledgeable to your supervisors and your clients. Always put your best foot forward when representing your company.

Keep Records

Keep track of any possible age discriminating actions by keeping notes. If you ever have to take your problem to HR, you’ll need detailed notes of dates, people involved, and the situation.

Stay active and relevant in your industry and workplace so they won’t have any reason to discriminate against you. Dealing with age discrimination can be a challenge, but you can fight back and get what you deserve.

Do You Need Help?

If you need help updating your resume, practicing for an interview, or organizing your job search information during these challenging times, consider reaching out to Rachel Schneider, CPC at Career Find to assist you.

By |2021-06-14T17:34:57-05:00April 29th, 2021|Career Success, Job Stress|Comments Off on How to Deal with Age Discrimination

7 Ways to Be Happier at Work

Would you like to be happier at work?  We all have those rough days at work, the ones when we think we’ve had enough and can’t take it anymore. We just want to quit. But then you think about all the years you’ve put in, all the contacts you’ve made, and the promotions and raises you’ve worked hard for, and you change your mind and tell yourself tomorrow will be better.

Happier at work

But what if you could be happier at work more days than you’re unhappy? What if you looked forward to going to work and enjoyed what you do? Not only would it make you happier throughout your workday, but that joy would carry over into your home life.  According to an article on TheOneThing.com, “Happy people tend to work more efficiently and think more creatively. They also approach problems in a constructive manner so that their issues are quickly solved.”  So being happy is a win for you and for your company.

Ways to Be Happier at Work

Being happier at work isn’t as hard as you may think. Try these tips to improve your mood and enjoy your job more.

1. Do Something You Love

This may sound simple, but most people work a job for the money and not because it’s something they enjoy doing. Believe it or not, you can make money doing almost anything you love. You just need to figure out how. Think about the hobbies you enjoy and blend them together with the experience and skills you have to come up with a job that makes you happy.

 2. Find Balance

All work and no play is bad for your mental health and happiness. Find a job where you can find some balance, one that you can easily take time off for your child’s activities or date night with your spouse. A job that is more focused on work product instead of how many hours you sit at your desk will make you happier and more motivated.

3. Focus On Development

Both personal and professional development can make you happier in all areas of your life. What are your goals? Are there hobbies that interest you? What classes do you need to take for a promotion? Anything you do to better yourself will contribute to your happiness.

4. Stay In The Loop

Know what’s going on at work, even if it’s not in your department. It will help you see the bigger picture of what your company is focused on so that you can look for ways to contribute and maybe move to a different department where you’ll be happier.

5. Ask For Feedback

Most managers forget to tell their employees how much they’re appreciated or what a great job they do, but we need to hear those things to stay motivated. Ask your boss for feedback on how you’re doing at your job or how you managed a project.

6. Don’t Overextend Yourself

We think we can do it all, but we can’t. And overextending ourselves leads to stress, frustration, and resentment. Don’t take on a new project until you’ve taken some time to think about the time commitment involved and how you’ll manage it.

7. Avoid Negativity

Almost every office has an office gossip or two; you know the type who always talk about other people behind their back and spreading negativity everywhere. These are the people you need to avoid. Yes, they’ll probably talk about you too, but only because they’re jealous. Keep these people at arm’s length and politely walk away from conversations that are too negative.

When you focus on your own happiness, you can find ways in every situation to be happier no matter what’s going on around you.

Do You Need Help?

If you need help updating your resume, practicing for an interview, or organizing your job search information during these challenging times, consider reaching out to Rachel Schneider, CPC at Career Find to assist you.

By |2021-06-14T17:35:11-05:00April 15th, 2021|Work/Life Balance|Comments Off on 7 Ways to Be Happier at Work

When Being Overqualified is a Job Interview Obstacle

Is being overqualified a job interview obstacle for you? There are several reasons why you might apply for a job you’re overqualified for. Maybe you want to be closer to home, perhaps jobs in your industry are hard to come by, and you need to work, or maybe you want less responsibility than you’ve had previously.  Or maybe due to COVID-19 you need to look for a different job.  All of these are good reasons for applying for a job that you’re overqualified for.

Overqualified is a Job Interview Obstacle

Sometimes when looking for a job your years of training or job experience can work against you.  According to The Wall Street Journal, “It’s hard when your big title or years of experience are seen as a disqualifier, rather than a qualifier.”

Your future employer might need a little reassurance that the job you are applying for is a good fit for you.

Answers To The Overqualified Question

Here are the best ways to answer the “aren’t you overqualified?” question when it comes up in your interview.

1. Be Honest

Tell your potential employer the true reason you’re applying for a job that you’re overqualified for. A good employer will respect your honesty and your reasons. If you want to be closer to home or have a better work schedule than you have now, say so. But don’t overshare. If you’re applying for the job because you really need the work, don’t share your sob story. The employer might feel sorry for you, but it won’t win you the job.

2. Emphasize Your Commitment

Ease your prospective employer’s concerns that you’re only interested in the job because you need to work, and you’ll be keeping your options open for when a better opportunity comes along. Let the interviewer know that you may be overqualified for the position. Still, you’re committed to performing at your best, and that you intend to be a long-term employee and perhaps grow within the company.

3. Discuss the Potential Opportunity

Your potential employer may still be skeptical so let them know that you’re looking at the position as an opportunity; you’re not settling. Discuss the skills you have that can benefit the company and help push the position to a new level. Talk about how you can help grow the position, the department, and/or the company with your experience. Share how you want to develop yourself professionally and how the job fits into that goal.

4. Share How the Position is a Better Fit

Maybe you’re tired of being in management, going to meetings all day, and pushing papers around. If the reason you want a job that you’re overqualified for is to get back to the basics, the work you really love, share that. Talk about how the current position holds more interest for you than the position you’ve previously had.

5. Make the Boss Look Good

Talk about how your experience and knowledge bring a lot to the team and can support the team in a way they haven’t been supported previously, making the management team look good. You can help your boss and your team be more successful with what you bring to the table.

There are many reasons why you might want a job that you’re overqualified for, but if you can help your potential employer see the positive in hiring someone with too much experience, it just might be the perfect fit for everyone.

Do You Need Career Search or Interview Help?

If you need help updating your resume, practicing for an interview, or organizing your job search information during these challenging times, consider reaching out to Rachel Schneider, CPC at Career Find to assist you.

By |2021-06-14T20:24:20-05:00March 31st, 2021|career search|Comments Off on When Being Overqualified is a Job Interview Obstacle
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