Career Opportunities

Helping to build the career you deserve!

A weekly ComputorEdge Column and twice-weekly podcast by Douglas E. Welch
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Thursday, October 18, 2007

Manager Tools: How to Leave a Voicemail

Once again, Mark and Mike at Manager Tools hit a very important pet peeve of mine, how to use voice mail effectively. It amazes me that we still have to educate people about this, but anyone who has received voice mail knows that there is a problem.

My favorite tip from this show, "Move the conversation forward!" For me, this is the main issue. No more "Call Me" voice mails would be top of the list for Christmas this year. (SMILE)

Manager Tools LogoHow to Leave a Voicemail

This cast describes how to leave an effective voicemail.

If you’ve ever gotten a voicemail which sounded like, “[your name], this is [their name], call me,” you know why we’re doing this cast.

Phone manners have been steadily decreasing for decades. When boys used to call for Mark’s daughter Kate, they would slouch verbally through, “Is Kate there?” and Mark would answer, “Yes,” and hang up. He safely assumed that any person who asked that question was a boy, and not enough of a gentleman to be allowed to speak with her. (At first she rolled her eyes, but later she liked the hurdle that Mark’s demand created: those boys that never got it ended up being…well, boys.)

What about at work? The “Bob this is Joe call me” is only one example. It ranks right up there with “saw that you called, what’s up?” answered with, “did you, errrrr…listen to my voicemail?”

In this cast, we have recommendations for how to leave a voicemail. We think of this as the first cast on phone skills…out of several hundred to come.

(Via Manager Tools.)

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Sunday, May 13, 2007

Great career discussions on the Friends in Tech forums this week

Friends in Tech LogoThis week we have 2 great discussions happening on the Career Opportunities area in the Friends in Tech forums.

* The first discussion is taking place in our monthly Career Complaints topic and deals with how companies deal with training and another on micromanagment.

* The second is entitled, Is there hope to love my job again? where a listener is trying to find the balance between a job they do well and a job they love.

I'd love to hear your comments on these topics and others. Head over to It's free and it can be a great step towards "Helping to Build the Career You Deserve!"

Note: If you would like to subscribe to the forums using your RSS reader, you can use this feed RSS Feed icon to easily follow the conversation.

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Monday, May 07, 2007

Elsewhere Online: Manager Tools: Interviews - The Introduction

You will never hear me claim to the expert on interviewing strategy, so I offer up this podcast from the folks at Manager tools to get you off on the right foot.

Like everything at Manager Tools, this podcast offers a clear, step-by-step approach that can give you an edge in any interview situation.

Be aware, this podcast is part of the Manager Tools Members Only section and will require a FREE registration to gain access. Trust me, though, it is well worth the time if you plan on interviewing anywhere soon.

Manager Tools - Tools for Leaders and Managers : Blog Archive : Interviews - The Introduction

In this cast, you’ll learn how to handle the crucial first five to ten minutes of any interview - Introductions. It is absolutely true that this is a critical part of the interview - first impressions are being formed, and I’d bet 75% of interviewers have a strong indication of how it’s going to go by the time this portion is done. That translates into our gut feeling that this is where 75% of technical interviewees fail. It’s THAT important.

(Via Manager Tools - Tools for Leaders and Managers.)

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Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Questions for our next Career Opportunities Guest - John Braheny - May 8

Do you have questions for John Braheny, our next guest on Career Opportunities LIVE? (See complete annoucement for this show) We'll be discussing "A Career in Music".

If you can't join us LIVE, email or phone in your questions. Email them to or call 206-338-5832 any time prior to the event and we will try to get them into the show.

Listen, Chat or Phone in your questions LIVE!

You can listen or join in the interview live, via online chat or telephone, by setting up your FREE account at For more information on joining a Talkshoe Talkcast visit:

We will also be using to stream live audio and video for those who would just like to watch the interview. You can tune in to the show by visiting:

Press the large Play icon in the middle of the picture to begin streaming the video.

Note: when you enter this page, you will be asked to run an applet for the built-in chat room. You can click Trust, if you would like to join the chat, or simply press Don't Trust to ignore.

Finally, the interview will also be released as a podcast on Career Opportunities and soon after the event.

Subscribe via iTunes

Subscribe using iTunes and receive the show automatically!

Link: Previous epoisodes of Career Opportunities LIVE

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Monday, April 30, 2007

Learn how to subscribe to a podcast

Learn How To Subscribe LogoEven if you listen to my podcasts directly from the web site, or see the Subscribe links on this page, you still may be wondering what this "subscription" thing is all about.

Well, here is a video that shows you exactly how to subscribe to podcast using iTunes or the Juice podcatching client.

Watch How to Subscribe to a Podcast

After you watch the video, you can use the links below to subscribe to Career Opportunities and and receive each new episode automatically.

Subscribe with iTunes

Copy this link to Subscribe using other podcatching clients or RSS feed readers

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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Elsewhere Online: Effective Hiring: Set the Bar High!

On a bit of a Manager Tools kick lately, but as I mentioned in the interview with Steve Holden, there is so much useful content in the podcast it deserves to be highlighted.

I was listening to this show while making dinner tonight and I had to stop everything to go and get my journal in order to take some notes.

While the podcast is directed at helping managers make good hiring decisions, it is always useful to see how managers could (or should) be arriving at their decision. Hopefully, you can make it even easier for them and ge the job you both want and deserve.

Effective Hiring: Set the Bar High!

This cast shares our most important principle in The Manager Tools Effective Hiring Process: Set the Bar HIGH.

We believe that the biggest invisible organizational personnel failing is hiring poorly. It’s that simple: the vast majority of companies do a terrible job - compared to what they COULD DO EASILY - in hiring the right people. (Continues)

(Via Manager Tools.)

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Elsewhere Online: We don't like you, go away

It looks like Seth Godin has had another run-in with those who like to "Punish the Innocent".

See Don't treat everyone like a criminal, or an idiot, March 16, 2007.

This is one of my biggest pet peeves and yet Los Angeles seems to take this to an art form. A few people abuse something, but EVERYONE has to pay for thier stupidity.

Oh well, welcome to the big city.

We don't like you, go away

Hey, I know that your last customer was a jerk. I know that you get asked the same stupid questions over and over. I know that people don't appreciate you, they're boors, they're selfish, they're in a hurry.

But, here's the thing: I'm not those people. I've never been here before. I didn't do anything wrong! Don't blame me for them.

If you're going to be in the service business, you need to accept that or you're going to hate it and be lousy at it, both at the same time.

(Via Seth's Blog.)

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Elsewhere Online: Four tips to make a bad job good

Four good tips courtesy of Yahoo Finance and LifeHacker.

These might seem a little simplistic, but I can guarantee you, the tip on shortening your commute could be a life saver.

Four tips to make a bad job good

Yahoo's Brazen Careerist suggests 4 tips for making bad job good - or at least bearable. For example:

1. Make a friend atwork.

People with one friend at work are much more likely to find their work interesting. And people with three friends at work are virtually guaranteed to be very satisfied with their life, according to extensive research from Gallup...

Some of the tips may seem a bit obvious, but that doesn't make them any less true. Naturally, if it's within your control, finding a better job is a sure bet, but that's not always possible to do immediately. Share your tips for making a bad 9 to 5 better in the comments.

(Via Lifehacker.)

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Monday, April 16, 2007

Elsewhere Online: How to work with difficult clients

This is a nicely detailed article on identifying and dealing with difficult clients. No matter where you work, freelancing or on-staff, it can be helpful to know which type you are dealing with and how to approach them.

That said, one of the most important lessons you MUST learn as a freelancer is when to "fire" a client.

These clients don't just effect your work with them, they also can effect your work for your other clients (who hopefully aren't nearly as much trouble) by monopolizing your time and attention.

Simply, life is too short to work for difficult clients.

How to work with difficult clients

Weblog Freelance Switch describes 12 breeds of difficult clients, then suggests how to successfully work with them.


(Via Lifehacker.)

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Sunday, February 11, 2007

What I'm Reading....

Readymade is from the folks over at Readymade magazine, a great monthly available via subscription or on the newstand.

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Thursday, February 01, 2007

Recommended: Manager Tools Podcast

Manager Tools Podcast Logo

On the recommendation of a fellow Friends in Tech member -- Chuck Tomasi -- I began to listen to the Manager Tools podcast with Michael Auzenne and Mark Horstman. I have been very impressed with what I have heard and wanted to take a moment to recommend the podcast to all of you.

Now, don't let title put you off. Even if you are not a manager there is a lot of useful information to be had here. Listening to the podcast can help you to better understand your managers and develop ways to manage yourself not matter what your position in a company.

In each podcast, Michael and Mark, provide step-by-step instructions to approach and manage a host of management situations.

You can subscribe to Manager Tools by visiting the web site or subscribe directly using iTunes.

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