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Archive for March, 2014

Tip: Education — It is time to customize your education…

March 29th, 2014 Comments off

Education

Education — It is time to customize your education in the same way I consul you to customize your career. Look outside traditional academe.

Previously in my Instagram Photos…

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Archive: A Reputation for Honesty — from the Career Opportunities Podcast

March 28th, 2014 Comments off

Get this entire series (and added content) in the Kindle book, “Cultivating Your Career Reputations”!

You don’t need a Kindle to buy or read. Kindle book are usable via web browser and Kindle apps for your computer, Android and iOS (iPhone/iPad) devices.


Career Opportuntiies Logo 2012

Read and listen to the first column in this series, Cultivating Your Career Reputations.

As I continue through this series, you will begin to see how each of the reputations relates to the others. This is exactly as it should be, as this is what happens in life. One reputation supports and effects the others. This week, I tackle honesty and how it relates to your life and career.
By some, honesty is seen as a fluid concept, shades of grey changing slightly depending on the needs of the moment, the people around and the risks involved. Little white lies sprinkle our days and yet we think nothing of them. We see them as merely a way to get along with others without putting us in danger of losing our job or of physical attack.

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In some ways, I agree with this perception, when you are truly confronting danger, but in most cases, people try to apply the same excuse to leaps of dishonesty that go far beyond the little white lie. No , I believe that we all must be as honest as possible as much as possible, less we slip into the delusion that honesty is only some vague philosophical concept that really doesn’t apply to the real world.
It is important to be honest with others, and yourself, for the simple reason that life demands it. Those who are chronically dishonest are always wary, always on guard, lest their deceptions be exposed. They pile lie upon lie to cover yet another lie until, inevitably, it all comes tumbling down, leaving those around them to suffer the consequences.

You need to cultivate a Reputation for Honesty because honesty is required to build trust. Trust is required by all of us who wish to do great things. We must trust that those around us are working in their best interest and the best interest of their work. We need to feel that we can turn our attention to this and that, without fear the others will somehow take advantage of our lack of attention. We need to feel that those around us will not do us harm. If you want to gain the trust of others, you must be as honest as possible.

Being honest is more than telling half-truths and white lies to smooth the waters. Honesty involves telling the truth even when it isn’t easy. Only petty people fear the truth. The people you want to know are not afraid of the truth or the person who speaks it. It may seem laughable, but there are others out there who respect honesty as much as you and it is those you need to seek out and emulate. Don’t be a “Yes Man”. Everyone will be better off for acknowledging the truth you present it to them. If not, the entire company, team or collaboration might be in danger of failure. No honesty, means no trust and this dooms any project before it can even begin.

Being honest with yourself is also terribly important. Too many of us hide our inadequacies behind false bravado, forcing others to suffer when our projects lag and tasks go undone. When we hide our failures, we hurt everyone, sometime even more than ourselves. I am sure you have been on the receiving end of a worker who hid their failures until the last minute, leaving you to explain the situation to your management with no time to craft a new solution. You don’t like it when others do that to you, so why would you even think of doing it to others. Be honest and take responsibility for your own actions, good and bad.

Developing a reputation for honesty helps you in several ways. First, you will find that people are more open to you…and your ideas. They know you will give an honest opinion and not use the information in ways that might hurt them. People will also give you the benefit of the doubt when issues do arise. Who will the boss believe more…the person who is always honest or one that is known for shading their honesty?

Of course, there is a complimentary danger when you develop a reputation for honesty. Should you ever abandon that honesty, or use the trust you have developed to take advantage of someone, the retribution will be swift and heavy. When you violate someone’s trust, especially after professing your honesty, they will see it as the ultimate insult. You will find yourself punished more severely than you may have thought possible. Even more, you’ll know that you probably deserve it. Don’t pretend honesty, if you don’t truly believe in its importance or your fall will be worse than if you had been chronically dishonest all your life. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t start being honest, though, only that you need to continue it in the future.

Cultivate a Reputation for Honesty and you open many doors that others find closed to them. Honesty leads to trust and trust leads to collaboration with others on equal footing. Deny this honesty, or deny this trust, and you are crippling your career with every passing day.

***

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Job Listings from Tuesdays with Transitioners – March 26, 2014

March 26th, 2014 Comments off

Jobs offered

 CareerCampSCV (Santa Clarita Valley) 2013 - 88 

Job Openings from Tuesdays with Transitioners Jennifer Oliver O’Connell, organizer of Tuesdays with Transitioners posted these job listings recently. Join Tuesdays with Transitioners Meetup group to receive these job listings directly via Meetup.com and email. 

  • Logistics Assistant, Joni and Friends, Calabassas
  • Development Director, California Council of Churches
  • Accounting Manager, Life Without Limbs
  • Part-time Bi-lingual Customer Service Representative
  • In-House Billing and Bookkeeper, Internal Medicine (Beverly Hills)
  • UTA Listings for March 23, 2014
  • Sr. Electrical Engineer, Physical Optics Corporation (Torrance)
  • Senior Accountant, ICON Aircraft (Los Angeles area)
 
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Video: Attracting Opportunity to You from “A Year of Opportunity”

March 26th, 2014 Comments off

Attracting opportunity thumb

From “A Year of Opportunity” – Career Opportunities Podcast with Douglas E. Welch)

Watch this entire presentation

Transcript:

“In order to attract opportunity to you, you have got to be out meeting people. Now, that meeting people can be face-to-face like this, which I highly encourage, but it can also be online. It can be as part of a volunteer group. It can be as part of your work. Whatever. The important aspect is simply getting out and being around other people. Because you never know what sort of opportunities are going to arise from that.

When attracting opportunity to you, one of the most important aspects about that is to tell people what you do and how well you do it. To put on my new media hat as well as my career hat the same time, that’s one reason I encourage people to start blogging, to start using Facebook, to start using Twitter, and so on, because they are perfect avenues to tell people what to do and how well you do it and actively demonstrate it.

If you’re looking through you’re Twitter feed — if you’re looking through your Facebook feed — you’re looking through your LinkedIn feed, whatever and someone has a question that you can answer — answer it! Even if it is just a short little “Well have you tried this (blah-di-blah-di-blah) It may turn into a longer conversation. It may turn into a longer conversation, but I have had situations like that turn into work — turn into great relationships. Simply because I took the time to take a little piece of the expertise I have and share it with someone else.

Anytime you can be of use to someone else you are attracting opportunity to you.”

 

 

Building a successful career in 2014 requires that we focus on 3 things this year, including:

1. Attracting Opportunity 2. Recognizing Opportunity 3. Accepting Opportunity

Join Douglas E. Welch for deeper exploration of the Year of Opportunity and what it can bring for you!

Thomas Edison is quoted as saying “”Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” This is still true today. Work that expands our lives and careers should be sought out and embraced, even if there is a bit of hard work involved. In fact, most opportunities worth pursuing require hard work of some sort. Life doesn’t often give you gold simply for being you. You need to share your knowledge and show your worth and this often means some long hours, if not actual physical labor.

Douglas is writer and host of Career Opportunities, a long running column and podcast dedicated to “Helping to Build the Career You Deserve!” Career Opportunities began in 1997 as a magazine column and expanded to a podcast in 2004. Douglas is also a New Media Consultant, Technology and Career Consultant with over 30 years experience in high-tech. You can find all of Douglas’ work at DouglasEWelch.com.

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Mighty oaks from little acorns grow — from the Career Opportunities Podcast

March 24th, 2014 Comments off

Career Opportuntiies Logo 2012

In our lives and careers we are most often concerned with the big issues — the big project, the big money, the big success. Unfortunately, this often means that we too easily lose sight of all the small pieces that make up the larger successes. Ignoring these smaller aspects can almost insure that the bigger successes never arrive. Failing to focus on the small, day-to-day decisions you make can stunt your career and leave you wondering why big success never seems to happen to you.


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“Mighty oaks from little acorns grow”, says one version of the famous quote. The origins of this phrase are first spotted in writing by Geoffrey Chaucer in 1374, although it might have been in use much earlier. I thinks its longevity in our language stems from its deep truth. Great things do grow from the smallest starts and I think it reminds us to look to the smallest parts of our lives and careers for the biggest impact.

In any career, it can be the smallest actions, the smallest thoughts, the smallest slights that can lead to success or failure. It is the missed deadline, the unkind word, the careless affront that lingers most in others minds. They might not remember your biggest success, but I can guarantee your managers and co-workers will always remember your smallest failures — especially when it directly affected them. It might seem illogical, but we can burn many bridges by being unkind, flippant or dismissive.

While it important to have large goals in your life and career, you must always remember that these big successes are made up of small, individual actions — tiny steps — on the way to that goal. When we focus too much on the final goal we can fall into the trap of “the end justifies the means.” We can be so focused on the end goal that we carelessly step on and over those around us — leaving permanent marks in their mind. In the worst case, these marks may prevent them from helping us achieve our goals or even cause them to actively work against us. Success is difficult enough to achieve in the best of conditions. Don’t give others any reason to make it even more difficult.

Image taken from page 160 of 'The Works of Alfred Tennyson'

Start each day with your goals in mind, but then focus on each individual step you take. Think how your small actions can not only forward your own goals, but also the goals of those around you. Do the work at hand, as this is from where your future success will arise. Do what you promise. Do it on time. Do it with high quality, not matter how small the task may seem. It is through this constant practice that great things will grow, just like the acorn growing into the oak.

There is an additional side to this acorn story, too. It can be difficult to start new projects, large projects, frightening projects. Sometimes we have such large ideas that it scares us just to think about them. What I have found over the years, though, is that taking the smallest step, the smallest action towards those large, scary projects can start you on the way to achieving them. Too often we discount the effect that small actions can have. One phone call can lead to another and another. One email starts a snowball of action rolling downhill. Before you know it, your project is starting to move and grow before your eyes. More importantly, this project wouldn’t have even begun if you hadn’t taken the first small actions. Small actions do matter, greatly, no matter what you might think. These steps can seem infinitesimal in the face of the larger overall project, but they are of the greatest importance. If you think any step is too small to be of any use, do it anyway. You will be very surprised how much you can accomplish with each tiny step towards your goals.

Keep your biggest goals constantly in mind, but then focus and execute on the small, day-to-day actions that move you towards that goal. It is through these individual actions that you achieve your biggest successes. Plant the acorn of your idea and then help it grow into the mighty oak that it can be and the career that you deserve.

***

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Video: 3 Aspects of Opportunity from “A Year of Opportunity”

March 24th, 2014 Comments off

3 aspect opportunity thumb

From “A Year of Opportunity” – Career Opportunities Podcast with Douglas E. Welch)

Watch this entire presentation

 

 

Building a successful career in 2014 requires that we focus on 3 things this year, including:

1. Attracting Opportunity 2. Recognizing Opportunity 3. Accepting Opportunity

Join Douglas E. Welch for deeper exploration of the Year of Opportunity and what it can bring for you!

Thomas Edison is quoted as saying “”Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” This is still true today. Work that expands our lives and careers should be sought out and embraced, even if there is a bit of hard work involved. In fact, most opportunities worth pursuing require hard work of some sort. Life doesn’t often give you gold simply for being you. You need to share your knowledge and show your worth and this often means some long hours, if not actual physical labor.

Douglas is writer and host of Career Opportunities, a long running column and podcast dedicated to “Helping to Build the Career You Deserve!” Career Opportunities began in 1997 as a magazine column and expanded to a podcast in 2004. Douglas is also a New Media Consultant, Technology and Career Consultant with over 30 years experience in high-tech. You can find all of Douglas’ work at DouglasEWelch.com.

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Are you ignoring opportunities? from “A Year of Opportunity”

March 23rd, 2014 Comments off

 

Ignoring opportunity thumb

From “A Year of Opportunity” – Career Opportunities Podcast with Douglas E. Welch)

Watch this entire presentation

 

Building a successful career in 2014 requires that we focus on 3 things this year, including:

1. Attracting Opportunity
2. Recognizing Opportunity
3. Accepting Opportunity

Join Douglas E. Welch for deeper exploration of the Year of Opportunity and what it can bring for you!

Thomas Edison is quoted as saying “”Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” This is still true today. Work that expands our lives and careers should be sought out and embraced, even if there is a bit of hard work involved. In fact, most opportunities worth pursuing require hard work of some sort. Life doesn’t often give you gold simply for being you. You need to share your knowledge and show your worth and this often means some long hours, if not actual physical labor.

Douglas is writer and host of Career Opportunities, a long running column and podcast dedicated to “Helping to Build the Career You Deserve!” Career Opportunities began in 1997 as a magazine column and expanded to a podcast in 2004. Douglas is also a New Media Consultant, Technology and Career Consultant with over 30 years experience in high-tech. You can find all of Douglas’ work at DouglasEWelch.com.

Follow CareerTips on Twitter
Circle Career-Op on Google+
Like Career-Op on Facebook

Archive: A Reputation for Decision-making — from the Career Opportunities Podcast

March 22nd, 2014 Comments off

Get this entire series (and added content) in the Kindle book, “Cultivating Your Career Reputations”!

You don’t need a Kindle to buy or read. Kindle book are usable via web browser and Kindle apps for your computer, Android and iOS (iPhone/iPad) devices.


Career Opportuntiies Logo 2012

Read and listen to the first column in this series, Cultivating Your Career Reputations.

You may not think about it on a daily basis, but your life is filled with decisions, both large and small. You decide when to get up, what to eat, where you work, who you befriend and who you marry. Unfortunately, when it comes to work, we often spend a lot of our time avoiding important decisions. There are many reasons for this, but your lack of decision-making abilities can directly effect your overall reputation and your chances for success.

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Why is it so easy to avoid making decisions? Simply because, by avoiding decisions we think we are avoiding failure. If we never choose one project over another, we never have to explain why a project failed. If we never write the book, we don’t have to explain why it wasn’t better. We risk nothing because we never make even the simplest decisions. Of course, I am sure you can already see the fallacy behind the concept. If you fail to make any decisions, you are risking your entire job at a very fundamental level.

Failing to make decisions can reduce your productivity to nearly zero as you waffle between one choice and another. You spend so much time thinking about your decisions that you never get anything done. The term “analysis paralysis” is often applied in these cases. You continue gathering more and more data, in hopes of making a decision, but all that data does is make your choice less clear. Like a dog, you chase your tail around and around without ever catching it. I see this frequently in technology workers and their corporate departments. They want to make the “perfect choice”, but the simple fact is, there is no such thing. We can only make the best choice of a computer, printer or digital camera in the present. Sure, a newer, better model might come out tomorrow, but if you are constantly waiting for the “next big thing” you will find yourself waiting forever.

The biggest danger in avoiding decisions is that your peers and your boss will eventually start making decisions for you. They will refuse to have their productivity stunted by your lack of decisions. Then you will be saddled with decisions you might otherwise have avoided. In this case, your attempts to avoid a bad decision will place you in exactly the position you most dreaded. As I mentioned in my column a few weeks ago, you can either “do” or “have something done to you.” Failing to make a decision abdicates your role and allows others to do with you as they wish.

You might not think of it, but your inability to make decisions effects far more than just you. No matter where you work, there are those around you who depend on your decisions. They are waiting on an answer so they can continue with their own work. Failing to make important decisions leaves them in a bad position with their management and their peers. If they are constantly telling their boss that they are waiting on information from you, their boss may come to think that their worker simply isn’t doing their job. While it may become clear, after a while, that you are the source of the information bottleneck, you will have already damaged someone else’s reputation with their manager. While you might eventually be fired for your inaction, chances are, you will also be risking the jobs and careers of those around you.

If you want to move your career forward, you need to build a reputation for decision-making. This doesn’t mean you rush into decisions without considerable thought, only that you make the best decisions you can, based on the best information you have today. Sure there will be failures and decisions that don’t work out as you plan, but this is the very nature of the beast. We often have to make decisions without having all the information. Waiting for every last bit of information so you can make the “perfect” decision will mean that you are waiting for a very long time. Meanwhile, life and business will pass you by, work will come and go and you will eventually be left at the side of the business road, wondering what happened to your career.

***

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Job Listings from Tuesdays with Transitioners – March 16, 2014

March 16th, 2014 Comments off

Jobs offered

 CareerCampSCV (Santa Clarita Valley) 2013 - 88 

Job Openings from Tuesdays with Transitioners Jennifer Oliver O’Connell, organizer of Tuesdays with Transitioners posted these job listings recently. Join Tuesdays with Transitioners Meetup group to receive these job listings directly via Meetup.com and email. 

  • Administrative Assistant with Medical Office
  • Sr. Accountant, ICON Aircraft
  • Corporate Communications Coordinator, 20th Century Fox
  • Full-time Purchasing Position, Helicopter Company (Van Nuys Airport)
  • Executive Assistant 
  • Executive Assistant to Producer
  • Entertainment Copywriter (Freelance)
 
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Find more jobs on the Career Opportunities Job Board from SimplyHired.com

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Archive: A Reputation for Fairness from the Cultivating Your Career Reputations series and book

March 14th, 2014 Comments off

Get this entire series (and added content) in the Kindle book, “Cultivating Your Career Reputations”!

You don’t need a Kindle to buy or read. Kindle book are usable via web browser and Kindle apps for your computer, Android and iOS (iPhone/iPad) devices.


Career Opportuntiies Logo 2012

Read and listen to the first column in this series, Cultivating Your Career Reputations.

There are many reputations that collectively make up your overall reputation. First in line for discussion is a reputation for fairness. What is fairness and how does it impact our work, our careers and our lives?

Our usual introduction to fairness is as a child. You often hear younger children proclaiming, “That’s not fair!” to parents and their friends when something doesn’t go their way. As children, though, life is inherently unfair. We are under the control and guidance of adults and sometimes the only answer they can give for their actions is, “because I said so.” As we grow older the concept of fairness grows. We know when someone is not playing fair. We can tell in the ways they act and talk. We learn that fairness is an important concept in interpersonal relationships, especially work, and those that transgress it are shunned, even though they might rise to high levels. While they might achieve great success in their work, they pay for their lack of fairness in other ways.

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How do you build a reputation for fairness? In some ways, what you don’t do is as important as what you do.

First, fairness means treating every person equally as an individual. We all have people we like and people we don’t. We can find ways to gather people around us that we respect, but the moment we start denigrating others, solely to enhance our own position, we are failing a fundamental fairness test. Firing someone, or getting them fired, simply because we don’t like them is wrong. If you can truthfully point to poor work performance or other behaviors that prevent them from doing their job, that is another issue. Too often, though, people will exaggerate issues or create them out of whole cloth, simply to remove someone they don’t like.

If we allow our favorites to break rules, while simultaneously punishing others for the same infractions, we are also no longer being fair. If we forgive the failings of our friends, but harshly condemn those same failings in our enemies, we are being hypocritical, as well. Transgressions are the same, no matter who commits them. To act otherwise shows a lack of fairness in how you deal with others.
Don’t punish others for thoughts, politics or culture that might be different from yours. I have often seen situations where a difference of opinion on a non-work related issue colors a work relationship. We cannot possibly agree on everything, but if those opinions do not effect work or the work environment, they must not be used to punish others.

Taking responsibility for your own actions and mistakes is the epitome of fairness, If you are actively trying to blame your failures on others, or hiding your mistakes so that someone else takes the blame, you are not being fair. Yet, this happens all the time. Some of the worst examples are when people withhold the information that their part of a project is behind schedule or failing. It is only when others, who are depending on them, try to assemble the whole that your failings are discovered. The unfairness lies in the fact that your lack of openness has left your co-workers with no time to develop new options, no way to try and salvage the situation. You have truly abandoned them.

Do you see yourself in any of these examples? All of us, from time to time can forget the importance of fairness in our work and in our lives, but I believe a reputation for fairness is one of the core elements that make up a great reputation. When you treat others fairly, they are more inclined to return the favor. When you make decisions based on facts, not politics or surface likes and dislikes, those around you will feel free to do their best work. When you treat others as individuals you will develop a level of trust that allows everyone to perform at a higher level.

Lack of fairness creates infighting, fear and animosity between people. When you develop a reputation for fairness, people will seek you out and do whatever is necessary to work with you. Together you will grow in skills and responsibility. Ignore fairness, though, and you will face a dog-eat-dog world where you fight your co-workers for scraps instead of developing something great together.

***

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