All Articles Tagged "Career"
Being a stay-at-home mom is a full-time job with overtime, all day every day. But staying at home with the kids plus having to find time to work at home can be pretty challenging without some type of structure. The best thing about working from home is the flexibility you have. If you already have a routine then that’s awesome, but if you don’t, try not to feel bad. Here are some tips that may help a working mom who is also at home:
1. Create A Daily Schedule
Although taking care of children can be very unpredictable at times, it’s still important to have a base schedule for your work day. Write down a schedule and consider some of these things when doing it. Does your job require you to do the kind of work where you need absolute silence or can you get things done with a little noise from the kids? What time will you get the kids up and feed them? How many hours do you need to work during the day? Can you work at all after they go to sleep or will you be too tired? Does your job require daily meetings and if it does, how can you schedule the kids around them?
2. Naptime Is Your Best Friend
Make sure you try and get the kids down for nap time when your job requires it the most. So if you know you have a mandatory meeting everyday at 1pm, try and get the kids down around 12:30. This is the one two to three hour period when you will have complete uninterrupted work time. If your kids nap for two hours, spend the first half an hour preparing lunch and getting toys set up for when they do wake up just to get it out of the way and spend the rest of the time working.
3. Set Up An Office Area
Setting up an actual home office or little office corner area is a great way to help you mentally separate the mom and the businesswoman. It also allows you to stay in the work mentality with little distractions. If you do your work while you have stuffed animals under your feet and little action figures behind your laptop, you may not be able to focus and actually do good work.
4. The Part-Time Babysitter
A great way to maximize your nap time break is to hire a part-time sitter who comes for an hour or two right when it’s supposed to be wake up time. That way lunch is already prepared and toys are set up so you get an extended hour of work during the day.
5. Join Forces With Other Moms
Other moms can sometimes be your biggest support group. Find other moms in your community or ask around with friends so that you guys can start a support group. You can take turns once or twice a week taking the kids to the local park so the other mom has a break to work and vice versa. If you don’t know anyone you trust then go with your kids over to the other working moms house and let her watch them in one room while you work on your laptop in the next room and afterwards switch places.
It shouldn’t be too much of a surprise to learn that 40 percent of employees feel that they’re not getting paid enough. Most of us feel like we could use a little more money for the hours we put in at our jobs. But how do you know when you’re actually being underpaid and when it just feels like “I don’t get paid enough for this”?
Before you go to your boss with a request for more money, it pays to know just where your salary falls. Is your boss paying you what you deserve? Are they getting away with paying you pennies for premium work? You might be surprised at what you find after doing a little research.
So what do you do if your paycheck is a lot lighter than it should be? If asking for a raise doesn’t work, it might be time to move on. Now that the job market is looking better, putting your resume in somewhere else might be the way to finally get paid the money you deserve.
Last night CEO and founder of The BOSS Network, Cameka Smith brought some of the most influential and powerful women in business together to share their stories and inspire women with entrepreneurial pursuits. The BOSS Network “Ladies That Lead” sold-out event was staged at the Prudential Financial Towers in Newark, NJ.
With a panel of business experts including award-
Michelle Williams delivered a very personal and poignant account of personal trials and triumphs as she finds her footing rebranding, redefining and reconnecting with herself as a creative and a business woman. Michelle confessed that her team initially laughed at her when she brought plans for her home decor line, Believe at Home, to the table. As a result, Michelle rerouted the negativity with positive thoughts, restructured her team and her faith.
Some of the world’s most successful women shared stories of racism and sexism in their fields during the panel discussion. Susan Fales Hill, a seasoned and notable writer, and producer of major works such as the TV classic “A Different World,” expressed that she used her passion for “disseminating information that reminds us of our common humanity” to rise above the negativity.
MommyNoire got to sit with Cameka, and the lovely panel exclusively, and this is what they shared:
Women in business empowerment groups are really trending right now, what do you think makes your approach unique?
Cameka Smith: After being laid off as a teacher, I knew I didn’t want to leave my fate in someone else’s hands again. Because of that drive and wanting to take my destiny in my own hands, it put me in the position…to begin to create a lasting legacy.
What are some of the top mistakes women make in starting a business?
For many of us, we are serial entrepreneurs, which is great, however often times we do not do our due diligence researching our target market, and what our customer needs, and problems are.
How have you been able to keep The BOSS Network ahead of the game and grow such a large network of women?
I think we have been able to become so successful because we are always adapting and looking to serve our women. We are truly interested in our networks needs and meeting them. We are committed to not just growing the network, but engaging and servicing them.
What are some key points to networking, in order to make a lasting impression and genuine connection towards building a relationship?
In my workshop, Connecting Beyond the Business Card, I talked about how it’s about building your network, not your rolodex. You have to consider how you can be of service to others–how are you valuable?–so that you have opened the door to a mutually beneficial relationship. Being authentic is so important–compliment someone’s outfit, ask them what brought them out to the event… As women I think it is most easy for us to relate to one another when we stay true to ourselves.
Tickets for upcoming Ladies That Lead tickets in Dallas and Charlotte are available at LadiesThatLeadTour.com.
ABOUT THE BOSS NETWORK
BOSS™ is an acronym for “Bringing Out Successful Sisters,” and the Network’s mission is to promote and encourage the small business spirit and career development of women. TheBOSS Network is an online community of professional and entrepreneurial women who support each other through conversation, online and event-based networking. To find out more about theBOSS Network, please visit TheBOSSNetwork.org. The BOSS Network was named as a Forbes’ “Top 10 Career and Entrepreneurial Website for Women.” With over 50,000 women globally subscribed to the mailing list and active members throughout the United States.
Check back in for part 2 of our Ladies That Lead coverage. Are your woman in business? What are some things you believe are important when networking? Comment below!
Let’s be honest, everyone would love to travel to amazing destinations for work. But which career paths should you look into to attain such a perk? According to Glassdoor, some careers that fall into this category may require you to be a brainiac with a high aptitude for mathematics and the sciences, while others may allow you to travel to beautiful locations…that may not have any connection to the Internet. But before you become discouraged, here are five career paths that will make you forget the sacrifices you have to make while you’re traveling.
If you received top grades in your Geology college courses, you should research becoming a Geophysicist. You’ll be able to study volcanoes, glaciers and undiscovered islands; just note that some of the locations you’ll be in for work will be quite remote, so no time for selfies and FOMO.
Love sports? Well, you’ll be perfect for recruiting the next MVP. This career path allows you to travel around the world searching for the best team players that will bring home the championship, every year.
If you love working with people and taking stunning photographs of them, then this is the job for you. Not only is a wedding photographer able to travel to exotic destinations to document a couple’s special day (for free) but their travels, clientele, and work will help them expand their network.
International Aid Worker
If you love servicing others affected by natural disasters or who have been oppressed by political or social issues, then pursuing international aid work should be your calling. You’ll be able to travel the world while helping and changing the lives of people in the process.
If the “Fashion Is Life,” quote ever resonated with you and you never like to be in the same place for more than two weeks, consider becoming a Retail Buyer. In this role, you’ll monitor in-store inventory and attend vendor meetings and you’ll be able to attend trade and fashion shows. Most importantly, you’ll be traveling around the world to find the next hottest trend that will be worn by models and fashion editors, alike.
Transitioning from the workforce into entrepreneurship may be one of the scariest and hardest decisions you may ever have to make. The comfort zone and safety net that you are use to, can be extremely hard to let go. Stepping out on faith into the unknown, is enough to cause people to rethink the pursuit of their dreams. We all know of the advantages that a 9-5 can bring. Consistent pay, reliable work schedule and one of the most important things in life…health insurance. Sitting behind a desk (or whatever your career may be), can also bring on the dissatisfaction that it’s not what you ultimately LOVE to do. Your dreams and goals outweigh all of the advantages that your job provides and you yearn for more. You just have to find a way to let go and move forward into entrepreneurship. There is possibility, there is hope and you can make it happen. Being an entrepreneur is hard work. Countless hours of work, wearing many different hats to run your daily operations and the ups and downs of money management, is only for the strong. With proper preparation and planning, you’ll be turning in your 2 weeks notice before you know it.
Before you even put thought into letting go of your security blanket, you have to START your engine. This is where you’ll lay the foundation of your business so that you’ll have a clear vision of exactly what it is that you want to do. It could be purchasing your domain name, buying supplies or designing your logo. Once you put the battery in your back to start, you will not want to stop.
Although you work every day and when you get home you’re drained, there should not be a day that goes by where you do not research and work on your business. Research is one of the most important aspects in any division of business (even as an employee). Growing more each day in the knowledge needed to run your business, will result in the confidence needed to know that you can ditch your job and go out on your own.
I speak on time management so often because it is uber important, in life and business. Use all of your time wisely now. If you have downtime at work, you should not be in the break room watching tv or at your desk online shopping. You should be working on your business. Out of those 8-12 hours spent building someone else’s dream, try to squeeze in 30 minutes for yourself (just don’t get fired doing so). Every minute counts towards your goal.
A plan should be laid out for at least a year moving forward from letting your job go. Entrepreneurship is filled with the unknown, but planning out your ideas and actions can be very helpful. There should be no plan B, your initial plan is going to work out!
Begin acting like a full-time entrepreneur NOW! Attend events to network and connect with others to begin building the buzz about your business. This will give you a great feel for how full-time entrepreneur life will feel. You’ll do countless hours of networking, building and marketing to keep your business in the know.
Use Your Skills:
One of the greatest assets of my business is that I took everything I learned from all of my previous jobs and applied them to my work ethic in running my own business. I have such great customer skills because I was a customer service rep for over five years. Everything that I learned in my training classes and courses, I apply to my business. Great things can come from the last days of your job. Soak up all information, skills and knowledge that you can and use them towards your own business.
This transition will not happen overnight, which can be a great thing. It will give you more time to prepare and save. With being an entrepreneur, money is the biggest issue. You’ll need to either find funding or use your own finances to get your business started and to keep it thriving. Now is the time to start pouring more dollars into your savings account. You should have at least six months worth of your living expenses saved, just incase you fall on hard times during your journey. Even if you do not have that amount of money saved, still continue on your path. Sometimes those hard times make you work harder, trust me.
Mia Ray is fashion blogger, business owner, fab mom of two and mompreneur.
Yesterday, one of my colleagues brought an interesting article to my attention, which was published by XO Jane. The essay was titled “Why I Don’t Wear My Engagement Ring To Interviews,” and the writer, who opted to remain anonymous, explained why she eventually decided to leave her diamond ring at home when meeting with potential employers. Despite the fact that she never experienced any noticeable forms of discrimination when interviewing while wearing her ring, she determined that another way to stack the odds in her favor was to present herself sans the ring because discrimination.
On some levels, I completely understand her concern. It seems that when interviewing for a new position, you have to present yourself as a flawless specimen of humanity just to be considered a serious candidate. Any tiny indication that you might cause a potential disruption in the workflow, and your interviewer will escort you out of the door faster than you can ask, “How soon should I expect to hear from you?” And although it’s illegal, I suppose that some employers might avoid hiring an engaged woman or married woman of childbearing age out of concern that she may take time off due to wedding plans and potential future pregnancies; however, I imagine that hiring managers with this kind of mindset are in the minority, or at the very least, I would hope so. In my mind, I was thinking, “Who the hell even pays attention to the jewelry someone is wearing on a job interview?” And then, I stumbled across this quote anonymously submitted by one manager to LearnVest explaining why they check for wedding bands on interviews.
“This is an entry-level job, and the people we hire are usually fresh out of college. If I see a wedding band, there’s a good probability that candidate is going to start a family soon,” said the manager. “If I hire her, and she goes on maternity leave, I can’t legally fire her, but I still have to find someone else to replace her while she’s gone. When she comes back I can’t fire her either, so now I’m stuck with two employees when all I needed was one. No thanks.”
Sigh. And apparently, it’s not illegal, only frowned upon, to discriminate against a potential employee because of their marital status or impending marital status. However, it is illegal to discriminate against women because they are mothers or may become mothers somebody, yet plenty of employers in the United States get away with this kind if behavior every day. For example, this manager disturbingly confessed to trapping potential employees into conversations about children by placing a photo of their niece and nephew on their desk during interviews.
“Kids are a distraction to this job, which requires long hours and weekends,” the manager reasoned. “I won’t hire someone who has other priorities.”
Personally, being discriminated against due to my marital status never been a real concern of mine. I’m usually more concerned that I’ll be discriminated against because of my race, first and foremost; however, perhaps I should reconsider. I mean, I clearly, can’t hide the fact that I’m Black, but discrimination during the hiring process due to marital status can easily be avoided by just removing a ring.
Ladies, do you remove your wedding ring when interviewing for a new job? Have you ever experienced discrimination because of your marital status?
Can you remember how you felt after you graduated from college? Aside from being happy I had a degree, it made me feel like a real adult. Granted I was already living in my own apartment and starting my career (I had a salaried position with a design company my senior year), I didn’t feel like I had all the answers.
No matter how much you try to prepare, there’s always some area where you lack basic knowledge. It’s understandable considering many college students had assistance from their parents and never truly tasted what the real world has to offer. If only there was a “Real World 101” course during my time in school that prepared me for what’s in store.
Maybe there is now.
One thing is quite clear: college graduates today lack a basic understanding of financial management and planning. Failure to grasp these essentials unfortunately can and will lead to high debt and improper planning for the future.
Perhaps we need to focus on teaching our loved ones personal finance instead of patting them on the back and handing them an expensive gift when they cross the stage.
A new survey called Money Matters on Campus is taking a look at first-year college students across the United States, and sheds light on what they know about debt and personal finance. With tuition and student loans on the rise, the study also reveals college graduates have an 8.5 percent unemployment rate and 16.8 percent underemployment rate. More than half of the students surveyed fear not being able to pay back their student loans (many will default) with a general consensus of feeling ill-prepared to manage money.
Young adults today aren’t acquiring wealth like their parents and as a result are holding off on marriage, having kids and home ownership. More are managing money on their own and are likely to have credit cards, but not budget, save or invest. What’s sad is that some will even resort to payday loans which are usually a financial kiss of death.
After reading the survey I found something very interesting that sheds light on students in two and four-year institutions. According to the survey, graduates from two-year college programs are more likely to possess money savvy and responsibility. While 26 percent live paycheck-to-paycheck compared to 16 percent of four-year students, they lead in areas of balancing checkbooks, using budgets (60 percent of two-year students have one compared to only 39 percent of four-year students), and mindful spending when their money is low.
I have a younger sister finishing up her sophomore year in college, enrolled in the business honors program. We have frequent chats about life after graduation that include what to expect and common banking practices. While she thankfully won’t have college debt thanks to academic scholarships, she is concerned about finding a good enough job that will help make her as self-sufficient as possible.
My son and my bun baking in the oven are way too young to understand anything about money. My husband and I invest in their academic future through 529 college savings plan but will keep an open dialogue regarding personal finance and what to expect. As parents, it’s our job to give as much financial advice as possible so they can reach greater heights and hopefully not make the same mistakes.
What conversations are you having with your children about money? Here are some reads you might want to check out.
Mom On The Move is a weekly profile of a mom mover and shaker. Women we admire, who inspire us and who have amazing stories to share, oh and they happen to have kids, too! While we love to talk about celebrity moms and their fabulous lives, we also love (and need) to know about real moms who are out here doing it all, just as fabulously. This week we’re profiling Mommynoire’s very own editor Kweli I. Wright.
When it comes to Moms On The Move no one embodies that life more than Madamenoire’s very own parenting editor, Kweli I. Wright, who has been moving and shaking as a journalist for over 20 years. So it makes sense that when it comes to parenting content for African American women, this writer/editor/interviewer is at the top of her game. She recently took time to talk with us about her fascinating journey, and how it lead her to where she is today.
What do you do at Madamenoire?
I’m the editor at Mommynoire, which is the parenting arm of Madamenoire. It’s shaping the content that goes up on the site. I edit, hire writers, handle the social media, work with brand for contests and promotions. It’s a pretty all-encompassing job. I think back to when I started 20 years ago, working for a publication was very different. Generally, if you were a writer, you’d write, and editors would edit. It’s evolved where you have to bring a lot of skills to the table.
How did you become an editor?
I went to school for journalism and I started as a writer working at the local newspaper in Staten Island. One day, my mom gave my resume to someone in our building whose daughter worked at the Village Voice and I got a call. It was an amazing experience. I was the executive assistant to the editor-in-chief, Karen Durbin was an amazing mentor. I got to sit in on the meetings with all these major writers. She was the first person to tell me that I could do this. It was at the Voice that I started covering entertainment and hip hop, which lead to me freelancing with magazines like The Source, Vibe and XXL, and ultimately lead me to my next job in radio.
What did you do in radio?
I worked for a syndicated radio company called MJI Broadcasting. Back then, you wouldn’t be able to talk to Diddy or Destiny’s Child via social media, so they would come through my office in New York City and I would interview them for an hour about anything that I could think of to ask because you never knew when they’d be back. That interview would be cut and sent to radio stations throughout the country.
Did you enjoy it?
I was in my early 20’s and it was another amazing experience because there were really no rules. It was get the story, find the story, make a story. It definitely helped me to become an editor because I had to start thinking about what might make a good story and the different angles.
What did you do next?
From there I worked at another amazing company 360 Hip Hop with Russell Simmons, which was a groundbreaking website with some of the most talented writers, editors, and creatives in the business. We built the site from the ground up.
It was after they got bought out by BET and I went to work there for a while that I decided to take a break. I got pregnant with my daughter Sascha and started working with my mom’s dessert catering company, making cakes all day. I did that until Sascha was about a year old, and then I ended up going back to work for Russell, this time as a managing editor at GlobalGrind, another website that he was launching.
How did you balance work with a new baby?
I’ve always been a single mom so my own mom was and still is my rock. She was there to take care of Sascha while I spent a lot of time away from home, working really late hours.
How did you end up at Madamenoire?
After I left GlobalGrind, I was freelancing. It was around 2009 when I saw a listing on Craigslist about a site geared towards women of color. It was intriguing to me because I had experience with startups, and I also liked that it was going to be a place where African American women could talk about style, beauty, culture and careers. I felt like there were so many representations for Caucasian women, but for us there was Essence and that was basically it.
How did the parenting come into play?
I was part of the very small team–there were three or four of us–that launched the site so we designed the layout, started on Twitter and Facebook … While were trying to figure out what the content should be, and by then Sascha was a toddler, so I ended up doing the first parenting articles on Madamenoire. It wasn’t a big thing back then, but now the interest around parenting and motherhood, especially celebrity, is booming.
Are you passionate about moms?
Yes, I love this space because I think we all struggle with the guilt and the allusive balance thing that never really happens, but it’s also about taking care of ourselves and making sure we’re alright so we can take care of our families.
Are the hours flexible?
At this company, yes. I’ve been fortunate to be able to work from home a few days a week. I get much more done at home. Sometimes it goes by fast and I look up and it’s time to get my daughter, but she knows that when she gets in she does her homework and I’m on the computer finishing up until 5:00 p.m., at least. It’s like you see me over here at my desk, but play like you really don’t see me. (laughs) I had to explain that to her and now she gets it.
What’s the best part about your job?
Right now, since I’ve been in the industry for 20 years, editing is much more fulfilling than the writing. I like being able to help other writers craft their voices.
How do you balance it all?
It hit me like a ton of bricks a few months ago, when my daughter, she’s now 10 and has something new that she’s doing every week, asked me what I do for fun. I didn’t know. It was a light bulb moment to not make my life about just taking care of her and work. It made me really think and start to do fun things for myself. First, I started working out seriously, I’m making more time for friends and taking up hobbies I had let go of in the past few years.
What’s next for Kweli?
I definitely see myself continuing to develop super content for moms.
I will never forget some of my professor’s parting words during our final days in my Media, Culture, and Society class: “In addition to their desire to objectify us, men only want women to wear heels in the workplace because they slow us down, ultimately making us appear as weaker competitors in their eyes.” Truest words ever spoken.
Out of all of the office environments I’ve worked in, heels have always been an optional part of the dress code. You can wear them if you feel inclined to do so, but they certainly have never been a requirement. Unfortunately, some working women haven’t been so lucky, and now, women everywhere are calling for reform.
Nicole Thorp of London, who was sent home without pay from her temp job as a receptionist at finance company PwC because she didn’t wear heels, started an Internet petition urging the parliament to protect women from these kinds of dress codes. The petition reads:
It’s still legal in the UK for a company to require female members of staff to wear high heels at work against their will. Dress code laws should be changed so that women have the option to wear flat formal shoes at work, if they wish. Current formal work dress codes are out-dated and sexist.
In an interview with BBC London, Thorp alleged that she was told by her employer that she is required to wear shoes with a “2 to 4-inch heel.” She refused and argued that her male counterparts were not being obligated to adhere to the same dress code.
“I said ‘if you can give me a reason as to why wearing flats would impair me to do my job today, then fair enough’, but they couldn’t,” she explained. “I was expected to do a nine-hour shift on my feet escorting clients to meeting rooms. I said ‘I just won’t be able to do that in heels.”
Mashable was informed by a PwC spokesperson that heels are not required by their company dress code and explained that they were in talks with outsourcing firm Portico regarding the policy.
So far, Thorp’s petition has garnered over 130,000 signatures.
Selecting the right life partner is not only crucial to your overall well-being but also, your career, a new study suggests.
According to Inc, the study led by researchers from Washington University in St. Louis found that those with sensible and reliable partners are more likely to receive better performance reports in the workplace, earn more money and score more promotions.
What’s even better is that researchers say that having a partner with these traits helped both men and women. Apparently, it all comes down to having a conscientious partner who demonstrates model behavior such as performing more household tasks and proving their reliability in other ways. Conscientious partners not only promote a better home life, which allows their spouses to focus more on work, but it is also likely their husbands or wives will begin to emulate their behavior.
“These results demonstrate that the dispositional characteristics of the person one marries influence important aspects of one’s professional life.”
Years ago, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told a room full of professionals that the person you choose to marry is the most important decision any woman will make concerning her career.
“The most important career choice you’ll make is who you marry. I have an awesome husband, and we’re 50/50,” Sandberg said at the 2011 IGNITION Conference in New York before going on to share just how crucial it is to have a supportive partner. Of course, you don’t need a partner to be successful, but if you’re going to have one, it will behoove you to pick someone who is supportive and according to this new study, conscientious.