March 21, 2011
Spring Cleaning for Your Career
With spring comes spring cleaning—and we're not talking just about mopping behind the refrigerator or clearing junk out of the garage. You can take advantage of the energy boost that comes with longer days in another way: by cleaning up your career or job search. We asked Lisa Quast—a certified executive coach, the author of “Your Career, Your Way," and the founder of Career Woman, Inc.—to share some tips:
Monster Blog: What's some "dirt" that a person may need to remove from his or her career or job search?
Lisa Quast: Rid yourself of outdated clothes, hairstyles, and make-up. Always dress for the position you want, not necessarily the one you have.
Detox your brain by getting rid of negativity. Start spring with a fresh, positive outlook that says, "Yes, I can accomplish my career dreams!"
Stop thinking like an employee and start thinking like an internal consultant. Begin demonstrating to higher-ups how much value you add to the company.
MB: What new tools and products should people be using, and how?
LQ: Brush up on your social networking skills, and build professional and personal support networks to gain job referrals.
Take advantage of company-sponsored training programs to learn new skills and increase your value in the workplace.
Use the Internet and discussion boards to find out everything you can about a company before you interview there. Company websites are a great tool—but, after all, they were created to make the company look good, so take the time to research additional sources for information about the company. Good places to locate company information include Hoover’s Online, Vault, WetFeet, and Dow Jones Factiva.
MB: What steps should a job seeker take to polish up his or her online image?
LQ: Make yourself shine by getting a professional portrait taken, and then use it for networking sites (or for your company’s employee directory).
Clean up your resume. Update it each spring and have at least two people review it and provide feedback for improvement. After all, your resume is the best advertisement for your product: you!
Scrub your personal profiles on all social networking sites to ensure that you look professional online. Un-tag yourself from any pictures showing you in compromising or unprofessional situations.
Be prepared: Use search engines to find out what comes up when you type in your name, and then seek out and repair any damage to your online image. You should always be aware of what hiring managers are finding when they search for you online.
* For more practical tips, check out "Make a Fresh Start This Spring."
A sought-after career development expert, Lisa Quast is quoted regularly appear in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, NY Daily News, CNN.com, and MSN.com, and she frequently contributes career articles to Forbes.com and HRNow.com.
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So helpful, thank you. :)
Posted by: jane R. | May 28, 2011 1:00:04 PM
I am currently looking for work, and have found that the more to the point you are with regards to your CV the better, there is nothing worst than going around the houses, you offer good tips and I totally agree with the fact that you should scrub your social networking site in order to look for professional.
Posted by: Helen | Aug 24, 2011 5:05:19 AM
What a fantastic post, people nowadays do not link the fact that facebook and other social networking sites can be viewed by so many people, who often aren't their friends at all. Friends of friends can also look at your profile. I think it is necessary to make sure that the profile is clean and only used for chatting and nothing else.
Posted by: sara | Sep 12, 2011 1:39:27 AM
What a brilliant post, this is so so true, before we have any change of career we ought to look into the one we have at present and what we could do with our lives to improve the way we come across to other people.
Posted by: julia | Sep 14, 2011 6:34:46 AM
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