Posts Tagged 'Shifting Careers'

Fight Age Discrimination in Your Job Hunt – Manage Your Digital Footprint

You thought social media was for the “kids?” Blogging, Twitter, Facebook…You don’t have time to engage online with a bunch of people – you’re busy with your job hunt! Think again!

Yesterday, I posted about the value of social networking for the job seeker. Then, as I usually do, I went through my blogroll to see what’s out there in the career space. Coincidentally, Marci Alboher’s blog for the New York Times, Shifting Careers, reminded readers of another great benefit of getting involved with social media such as blogging, Twitter, Facebook, linkedin, etc. It can help keep you looking young in a job market with a tendency to discriminate against older workers.

If you haven’t looked for a job in a while and/or aren’t tuned in to managing your “digital footprint” – what comes up when someone “Googles” your name – it’s time for a quick lesson in social media. The long and the short of it is this: an online presence is key to how people will perceive you. Especially if you are in a “young” industry that discriminates against workers over 40, appearing connected to new ways of presenting yourself (your brand, as it were), may help you open doors that seemed closed.

Take a look at Marci’s blog…It tells the story of a 49-year old entertainment reporter who remade her image by freshening up her appearance and wardrobe and creating a hip online presence that made her seem younger than would belie her 20 years of industry experience. She hired people to help her, which is a great idea, but Marci points out that asking fashion conscious friends and teenagers (your children or others’) for advice and information about trends and technology is another option.

The key factor is, no matter how much experience you have, it is important to keep up with what is going on in today’s job market. Video resumes, Wikis, video conferencing, Second Life, podcasts…Job seekers should be aware of these technologies and willing to use them! Be resourceful and aware – you may be surprised to learn that Web 2.0tools can be a lot of fun and helpful beyond networking and job seeking. (Be sure to let me know when you start using a Wiki to plan your next potluck!)

Facing discrimination in your job hunt? We can write your resume to make you look younger. Need help navigating social media and online networking? Keppie Careers is here for you!

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photo by Sarah Camp


Stressed Out? Go Zen for Relief!

Photo by Brittney Bush

Are you “stressed out?” 

So many of us are so busy with our work and personal lives, stopping to think how to keep everything in balance doesn’t make the list of “things to do.”  Marci Alboher’s  Shifting Careers column in the New York Times recently recounted a session with Jennifer Edwards, whom she describes as “a ‘stress reduction educator’ with a background in dance, meditation and yoga.”  

Ms. Edwards encouraged the group to focus not on the actual stress point itself (the complaining co-worker, the high price of gas), but instead on “the stories we tell ourselves about these things and the way we respond to them that causes the stress.” 

Some of you may be familiar with the Buddhist state of nonattachment.  This involves avoiding judgements and expectations in your daily interactions.  We can’t control the stressors, but we can control our REACTION to the stress.  Yes, it is possible not to get your blood pressure up every time someone cuts you off on the highway or a co-worker shirks a responsibility.  (Maybe it takes some practice, though!)

Alboher mentions the physical techniques she learned in her workshop, such as “pausing during long stretches at our computers and applying some pressure to a point near the elbow (that)…helps reduce strain caused by repetitive movements like typing on a keyboard.”

After a long day myself, a new pressure point seems just the trick!  Does it work for you?

A long job hunt causing you stress?  Keppie Careers can help.  Let us encourage, enlighten and empower you for success by writing your resume, teaching you how to find a job and supporting you every step of the way.

Should You Have a Board of Advisors?

Recently, Marci Alboher’s Shifting Career’s article in the New York Times hosted a guest author on the topic of a personal board of advisors:

A personal board of directors is simply a collection of people who know you, are interested in your well-being, and have useful points of view. You consult with them on a regular basis -– say once every six months….A person doesn’t have to be famous, influential or even successful to be a good board member. All that’s required is knowledge in a particular area. Your sister may offer better insight than the head of a trade association.  

In the comments section of Alboher’s post, many laughed at the idea, suggesting that these advisors use to be called “friends.”  However, as Alboher notes in her introduction, assembling a personal board  is not a new concept.  In the press toward personal branding, professionalizing advice that we might normally seek from friends and family is not a surprising jump.

Someone who is stuck in a career or job and doesn’t know what to do next can benefit from purposefully assembling advisors. Networking throughout your career is one way to create an informal group of advisors (maybe even a mentor if you are lucky). 

Of course, it is important to vet your advisors.  You don’t want people who will always agree with you, but you do want people who know you, your situation and are skilled in the topic about which you need advice.  Asking the wrong people (those who don’t have your best interests at heart or don’t know what they are doing) defeats the purpose.

Sometimes, it’s a good idea to hire advisors.  For example, if you need tax, financial planning or legal advice, you may want to consult a professional.  (Shameless plug:  if you need a resume written, do seek advice from those in your field, friends and relatives, but recognize that most of them probably do not have resumes that optimize their skills and accomplishments. You’ll do better if you hire someone to write it for you.  I’m not the only one offering this advice!)

Keppie Careers has a board of advisors to inform us about career trends in various industries.  Need a resume?  Job hunting advice?  Keppie Careers will help you every step of the way!

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