Know Your Grammar or You’re Screwed

My biggest pet peeve is incorrect grammar. Especially when the person is not only a college graduate, but someone applying for a HIGH LEVEL job. I also get really irritated when coworkers send an email to clients that are somewhat unprofessional with no punctuation, poor spelling, and horrendous misuse of “you’re.” I understand the internet can be a casual place, but that does not mean you should forget all of your elementary school education.

I am always on the look-out for clever infographics and charts to help show people how to use grammar correctly, because really, it isn’t that hard. I may or may not be known as the Grammar Nazi among my social network.

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Tuesday Ten: Career Goals for 2012

I may or may not have stolen the idea from Lauren Conrad’s blog, but it was such a simple idea I’m only a little mad that I didn’t think of it myself. However, I am adding my own twist to it and focusing on  my 10 career goals for 2012. 

Notice that many of them are not based off numbers or specific events. I am using 2012 to create good habits for myself moving forward. 

2012 Career Goals: 

1. Try not to take things personally. Even if they are personal. 

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What to Wear – Interview Edition

I’ve worked at many different places and have seen many different styles of outfits for interviews. Recently, my current employers (I work at a marketing firm & part time on weekends at Express) have been interviewing, and I have noticed quite the “variety” in interviewing attire and it got me thinking – what is the proper attire for an interview? I always wore a suit for interviews, especially when it is for a full time position in an office. In fact, I even wore a variation of a skirt-suit jacket for my interview at Express. But it begs the age-old question -What do you wear for an interview? Does it depend on the place you are interviewing? Does it depend on the job, or even the time of day? Let’s discuss.

Part-Time Jobs

This is where I think it is ok to be a little bit more casual. I, personally, think this is a great place to let your personality come through. Since I have almost always worked at retail stores, I have usually let my fashion sense come through to show them I actually might know what I am doing. Usually, I say a dress pant and a business casual shirt/sweater are perfect, or a longer pencil skirt & sweater/blouse. In fact, a nice dress could also work here. No need here for a suit jacket/blazer, unless you are like me and just completely adore a good blazer (it’s a pretty classy choice, so I highly recommend buying one, you can even get one at Target for $20 bucks).

I would try and avoid jeans; even if the place you are interviewing is fairly casual, because it is always never a bad thing to show you can clean up nice and you are serious about the job. If you do wear jeans, make sure they are a dark jean – almost to the point where people may think they are a black pant or a dark blue dress pant. Distressed or destroyed style jeans are not appropriate. I don’t care what Abercrombie OR Fitch told you. Frankly. you don’t want your charming personality to be overshadowed by the hole in your jeans or the sparkles in your T-shirt. Check out the looks below:

Part Time Interview - Casual OutfitPart Time Interview - Dressy Jeans

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Leadership and Management: 101

Think of all the bosses that you’ve ever had. I mean, EVER.  Even the ones back in your high school days working part time at a clothing store or making fries at the fair. What made them a great manager? What made them a terrible manager? Now, think of coworkers who are supposed to be leaders and examples in your work. What makes you love them, or what makes you respect them less? {Feel free to discuss these in the comments below- but please don’t name call}

Unfortunately, loving or hating your bosses or coworkers is one of the major reasons why people hate their jobs, and a company culture can effect not only the work communication, but even the work that is being done for clients. If you spend over 8 hours a day with a handful of people who don’t respect you, care about you, or even acknowledge you, it’s pretty hard to shake that off on the drive home.  I know this far too well, and I know how hard it can be to overcome a poor workplace setting. I also know what it’s like to go into a job where you love the people, and even if problems arise, you come together instead of pointing the finger. Company culture starts from the top, so proper leadership and management is essential in creating a company in which people want to work for.

I actually found a great infographic yesterday, called “7 Habits of a Highly Ineffective Manager” and you’ll be glad you checked it out, especially if you are a manager. But, this also works if you are a coworker or client, too. {Note: Be aware if you are doing any of these habits. Also, be aware of your employees reactions}

 

 

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Why You Might Not Have a Job – And It’s Ok

I’ve read A LOT of blog posts, articles, tweets, and Facebook statuses of people trying to give reason why some people don’t have jobs in this economy. I did the same thing. We are blaming outside sources, but perhaps it’s us?

This brings me to one of the best posts I’ve read about this subject. It’s straight to the point, and it doesn’t sugarcoat it. When I first read it, I thought to myself, ‘THIS IS/WAS ME.’ It’s from one of my favorite sources on job hunting/searching, Corn on the Job, aka Rich DeMatteo. He wrote a post called “6 Reasons You Don’t Have a Job” (go read it now, and come back here) and I completely connected and related to it, almost all 6 reasons..Yikes.Whether or not you think his post is truth or more excuses for people “trying” to find a job, I think these are things to think about if you are struggling with your job search. If it doesn’t relate to you, great! You are a few steps ahead of the game. If it does relate to you, like it did for me, don’t get upset. You are already surrounded by people who can help.

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How Does Customer Service Relate to Job Hunting and Hiring?

If you have ever worked retail, with clients or with consumers, you know how important it is to have excellent customer service. Whether it is thanking them for their business or rectifying an unpleasant experience, you need to be present for both the good and the bad that happens within 4 walls of your business (either actual or imaginary walls!)

How does customer service relate to job hunting? There are a few points from both the hunting (customer) and the hiring (business) perspectives.

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Continuing Your Education – Online?

Inspired by both my recent obsession in trying to learn everything there is to know about web marketing, and a recent Social Media Breakfast on Social Media and Education, I took it as a sign that I need to get myself in gear in writing this blog post on how to take charge of learning new things outside of the classroom. Whether it’s taking online courses or trying to teach yourself, there are many ways that you can try and complete a degree or just learn more about the one you already got.

So where do you start? You can’t read every blog out there, take every online course, and in industries that seems to be changing all the time by the time Amazon mails you your book things have changed. From my point of view, there are several things that you just have to do to stay on top of the current trends of any industry (and that I have been trying to do!)

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5 Reasons Why You Should Know Administrative Work

Administrative work definitely has a negative connotation. Admins end up doing a lot of work around the office that people deem as “busy work.” But guess what!? There are HUGE benefits to being the one that does this work. Below are my 5 reasons (from experience) on why you shouldn’t worry about having administrative work on your resume, and why it should encourage people to hire you.

1. You Will Never Have to Stall Your Work Waiting For The Toner in The Printer to Get Changed. 

It’s borderline ridiculous that something like this would stop your work, but you would be surprised to realize in an office how many people don’t even know where the printer paper is, let alone how to take the toner out. Since your admin assistant probably went home while you are burning the midnight oil, if you are printing something out after hours and the toner runs out, what do you do? If you said “Send the admin an email with instructions to change the toner and print out your document for you”, all I have to say is, Really?! You need to know how do do basic tasks around the office. One, because you are an adult, and it’s called independence. And two, because never having to wait on others means your work gets done in a timely manner, and you won’t miss a deadline because there’s no toner and your admin had a doctor appointment in the morning and wasn’t able to help you. (<- might be dramatic, but you get my point, right?)

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Why Just Knowing Microsoft Word Won’t Get You A Job

If you’ve been online lately, you’ve noticed something. There are a lot of programs out there to help in making your job easier. The hard part is learning the system, which of course, makes your job harder in the mean time. I’m sure you’ve also noticed it seems like every other day one company is acquiring another company, selling off one, or going bankrupt. How do you keep up and make sure that the skills that you are learning in your positions will stick?

When I started at my current company, I knew a few off-the-wall business systems and a handful of social media platforms.  I’ve been working full time for about 3 months, and I’ve already learned a handful of great systems that I can’t believe I didn’t know all of their potential before. These are just three, and there’s a TON more. But continue reading to see my most recent choices:

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Online Resources That Can Actually Help You

There are hundreds and thousands (and probably millions) of websites, blogs, articles, etc that will claim they can help you find a job, freshen up your resume, and help you in building a stronger career path. But can they? Can you go to a website, read a bunch of information, and completely turn around your job and internship search into something spectacular? If you are looking in the right places, then probably. There are several places to start looking for help and guidance in your search:

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