All Articles Tagged "professional development"
Everyone has aspirations of being successful in their careers. Without such ambitions, we would settle for what we have instead of what we can obtain. When it comes to the workplace, it’s very important to make the necessary steps to set yourself apart from fellow co-workers. After all, there is a high chance you will be gunning for the same position at some point. Does this mean you sharpen your claws and play dirty? No. Does this mean you bring your professional “A” game to make the decision a no-brainer? Most definitely.
Here are a few pointers on how to stand out at work.
New research from online job-matching service TheLadders found that there’s a link between the length of a person’s name and how much they’re paid. The more letters in your name, the lower your salary, to the tune of $3,600 annually for each additional letter. So, for instance, a “Bill” makes more than a “William” and a “Debbie” more than “Deborah.” The company, which took a look at the names, industries, and salaries for its six million members, even noticed a difference between “Michele” and “Michelle.”
The one name that’s doing well, turning up prominently on lists of executives and those with the highest pay, is “Christine.” Women, across the board, however, make much less than men.
Names are a heavy topic for African Americans, with studies finding time and again that resumes with a name that “sounds” too ethic have a problem getting to the interview stage. This a topic we tackled just today over on MommyNoire, with many commenters saying they will be cautious not to choose a name that would “put their child in a box” or “sound too ghetto.” As if this ongoing debate about race and name choice isn’t enough, The Boston Globe, published a big story about how name choices reflect society’s tastes and behaviors. For instance, back when Puritans were building the colonies, names like “Abstinence” were big.
“Economists Roland G. Fryer Jr. and Steven D. Levitt used data from a California state agency in 2004 to ask why black parents in racially isolated neighborhoods began giving their children “distinctively black names,” like DeShawn or Shanice, in the late 1960s and early 1970s, while other black parents’ name choices became more similar to whites’. Fryer and Levitt write that the ‘ghettoization’ of black names is likely a consequence of the black pride movement’s influence on black identity.”
So what names do you favor and why? Are you taking a future career into account when choosing a baby name?
Of course, most people try to live by the 10 Commandments. But there are also a set of commandments every businessperson should follow. These everyday rules will help you maneuver the rough terrain of the marketplace, whether you’re an entrepreneur or a businesswoman climbing the corporate ladder.
Small talk can become a very effective way of networking within the office environment, whether it’s connecting with your supervisor, another upper-level manager or the front desk associate. Small talk can also be just as intimidating as networking, reaching out and sparking conversation with those who might not have common interests.
You don’t have to be sports savvy, a Scandal super fan, or even an extrovert to begin some small talk around the office (even though it couldn’t hurt!). Here are a few tips and ideas to get your mouth going during those moments of small talk in the office.
Just fed up with your job. Well, it might be time to make a change. According to Huffington Post financial columnist James Altucher, Managing Director of Formula Capital, the are “10 Reasons To Quit Your Job This Year.” We take a look at a few of them.
Is your job obsolete? It might be time to move on and find a new field or learn a new skill. “Most jobs that existed 20 years ago aren’t needed now,” notes Altucher.
You just aren’t appreciated by the corporate higher ups. You are loyal to the company, do your best to promote yourself and the firm but it is not appreciated. Your branching out is seen as an affront rather than an asset.
Money really won’t buy you happiness. Just because you make a lot of money, it doesn’t mean the job is for you. “In other words, don’t stay at the job for safe salary increases over time. That will never get you where you want — freedom from financial worry,” writes Altucher. “Only free time, imagination, creativity, and an ability to disappear will help you deliver value that nobody ever delivered before in the history of mankind.”
Not finding that your job fulfills your needs? Then it might be time to find one that does. Altucher advises to ask yourself: “Are your physical needs, your emotional needs, your mental needs, and your spiritual needs being satisfied?”
Your retirement plan won’t give you enough to, well, retire. With 401(K)s, according to Altucher, no matter how much you set aside due to inflation you will have to sacrifice many luxuries in your retirement age. “The only retirement plan is to Choose Yourself. To start a business or a platform or a lifestyle where you can put big chunks of money away,” he advises.
In other words, if you can find a reason why a job isn’t for you that speaks to your financial or emotional well-being, it’s time to start making moves.
As a college student or recent college graduate, the best you can expect from an internship is a decent boss and no more than two coffee runs per day; basic tasks that seem to revolve around the copy machine come with the territory. You spend most of your time just hoping to get one good assignment that will lead to a solid recommendation and a trip out of the internship world. But the world of internships is quickly changing. More and more, older (read 30 and over) men and women are applying for and receiving internships. Although some are saying this as the ultimate downgrade, those folks are wrong.
Interning in your thirties and forties is an incredibly smart career move. As a more seasoned employee you’ll be an asset to the company. Here are five pros of being an older intern, as well as a few tips to make your internship work for you, not the other way around.
1. You’re More Experienced
This isn’t your first time around. You know what to expect in an office setting and can avoid making some of the classic intern mistakes. (Can anyone say flip flops at work?) Your general know-how and inside knowledge of workplace culture will easily make you a go-to in the office.
2. You’re More Confident
This pro builds off of the previous one. Younger interns are generally afraid of making mistakes or being too assertive. Wisdom comes with years, and so does confidence. You don’t have time for games you know exactly what you want. Your confidence allows others to have confidence in you. Have an honest conversation with your supervisor and tell them want you’re looking to get out of this internship. They’ll respect your confidence and will keep you in mind for key projects that could help you get to that next step.
3. Internships Are Flexible
Internships tend to be more flexible. You can set your own hours and generally work at your own pace. Unfortunately, internships also tend to be unpaid so if that’s the case make sure you have your priorities straight. When you’re in the office give 100% but you can’t be in the office 100% of the time for little to no pay. If you are making the choice to do an unpaid internship pursue grants and other forms of funding. There are a lot of organizations out there that will pay for your living expenses while you work an unpaid internship provided that you write a good proposal.
4. Great For A New Career & Re-entering The Workforce After A Hiatus
If you’re starting a new career, an internship is a great way to get a feel for the work culture and type of work you’ll be doing. Internships, or this case, “returnships,” are also great for those returning to the workforce. If you choose to leave the workforce to raise your children, I would absolutely recommend pursuing a part-time internship just to stay in the loop.
5. Your Life/Career Experience Makes You More Valuable.
The final reason why older interns tend to be better interns is because they just know more. Previous work and life experience make older interns more versatile and useful. For those switching careers, your past skills are your biggest strength. No matter what the switch is. I recently met a woman that was switching from elementary education to accounting. Her experiences as an elementary school teacher, though not immediately obvious, were vital for her new career. She was incredibly vigilant, organized, and creative (you have to be when you’re responsible for 30 some-odd kids.) All of these skills made her wonderful accountant and miles ahead of the younger interns.
Don’t be ashamed to take what you may at first view as a step back to an internship. Yes, the money is not as good but the experience is invaluable. As long as you know you’re strengths, verbalize them, and don’t get stuck behind the copy machine, your internship experience will catapult you to your next big career at any age.
When it comes to your career, what are your goals? What do you hope to accomplish? One goal that should be at the top of your list is to get better and better at what you do. After all, it would be kinda odd to want to be at the same place you are at in the next 10 to 20 years without growth or advancing your skill set.
In life, you always want to set the standard and strive for excellence. We only have one life to live so it’s important we make the most of it and work to be the best we can be. Maximize your potential in what you do to inspire others to achieve success. Should you need a push to get you started, here are some ideas you should consider.
Facebook COO and bestselling author Sheryl Sandberg’s memoir/feminist manifesto, Lean In, is causing quite a stir among working women. If you missed the hype, Sandberg uses her book to address the barriers in women’s minds that keep them from reaching the same levels of professional success as men. Sandberg acknowledges systematic hurdles like work and national policies, along with cultural expectations that inhibit the progress of women. But, she believes women can dismantle these hurdles by changing the way they think.
Sandberg’s critics note that her racial, academic, and economic privilege make it easier for her to put the burden on women to simply try harder to succeed. Many women were “leaning in” long before Sandberg’s book only to bump into a glass ceiling. A study by the League of Black Women found that black women make up only one percent of U.S. corporate officers.
Sandberg’s privilege shouldn’t stop women from applying the principles that brought her success. There are external boundaries inhibiting the success of black women, but that’s even more reason for us to eliminate the ones we inflict on ourselves. Check out these 10 principles from Lean In. Does the way you view yourself hold you back?
Do you have the guts to march into your boss’ office and ask for a raise? If that sounds a bit too forceful, what about scheduling a meeting to discuss the possibilities of a promotion?
One can only stay in their current position for so long before they need to move on up, and rightfully so. After all, we have dreams of making it to the top of the corporate ladder, right?
The idea of asking for a promotion or raise can be frightening – especially if management hasn’t been proactive. Yet, you never know what lies behind the door of chance unless you take it. Here are 11 ways to make moves towards a raise or promotion.
Do you just hate going into the office? Find your work boring and unfulfilled by your job? According to Joanne Cleaver, author of The Career Lattice, it is not that difficult to go from employee to entrepreneur. She recently gave Inc. four tips on how to do just that.
1. Decide how to use your industry or professional skills.
Cleaver advises that you come up with creative ways to fill a niche. For example maybe you are an accountant in a healthcare company. You could open a consultancy to help healthcare companies with electronic billing. This is what Dr. Teresa Taylor Williams did. “I decided to go out on my own when I identified a deficit in the quality of historically black-owned newspapers. Those deficits that I identified were inclusive of product quality, and the lack of original editorial contents specifically,” note Dr. Taylor Williams, owner and founder of The New York Trend Newspaper and TTW Associates.
2. Find the trends that are driving your industry.
“Look at what associations are talking about at conferences,” Cleaver tells Inc. “Read association publications and blogs. Find out who the influencers are in your profession or industry and follow them.”
3. Find your sweet spot.
“Once you understand industry trends, you can get a better idea of what potential clients most need from you,” reports Inc. Next. “Each of those intersections is potentially your sweet spot — the place where client needs dovetail with your skills and desires to create the potential for a successful business.” Taylor Williams, who founded her newspaper about 30 years ago, has had to rediscover her sweet spot over the years of being in business for herself. Now, she is finding her “sweet spot” online.
4. Work your network.
Tell people what you want to do and doors just might open up. Many of the profiles you read right here on Madame Noire include quotes from entrepreneurs who talk about the need for networking and self-promotion to find clients and get your business off the ground.