Focus on possibilities

April 29th, 2015 by


Many of us are faced with problems that can derail our dreams. It’s easy to let problems overtake our plans. Don’t let it! Try to see beyond the problems to see the possibilities that you are being directed towards instead. Is there an opportunity you are missing because you are focused on your current trials?

All it takes is that first step — a step towards  something amazing! Take a moment and evaluate where you are headed. Do you see a career path? A major or college decision? How about interviewing for a new job?

Hold your head up high during your problems, look beyond the current issue and plan for something amazing on the other side. We’ve got your back!

> Motivate yourself to do something amazing today — take one of Next Step Academy’s Life Skills courses.



Tips to ensure a successful hiring process

April 22nd, 2015 by

iStock_000004692694MediumFinding a job is never easy. There are numerous steps in the hiring process — the application, a resumé and cover letter, an interview, the follow up, plus the preparation. To help cope with the sometimes overwhelming process, Joe Rosenbaum, vice president of human resources for Argyle Executive Forum, offers some tips to make it easier.

Commit to the process
According to Rosenbaum, there seems to be a hesitation to commit to developing a career in a specific profession coming out of college. Instead, people focus more on finding the perfect job or perfect fit. This could be a problem if you start applying to jobs without really wanting them. “Remember that an employer hires you for what you can do for them and if you don’t position yourself as someone who actually wants to do that job, why would you assume it would be offered to you?” he explains.

Resumés help you get to the job you want
In Rosenbaum’s opinion, resumés are given too much attention in the job application process, but at the same time you still need one that states your interests. He suggests that a resumé should be specific and clear because employers are looking for candidates who have some sort of idea about what kind of career they wish to pursue. “Trust me when I tell you that if you apply for a marketing job and your resumé doesn’t say that you’re interested in marketing, you’re toast,” he says.

LinkedIn is important
“Assume that the first thing a recruiter will do is look you up on LinkedIn,” Rosenbaum says. He advises to make it easy for them to find you — upload a professional photo (no group pictures or beach shots). Make the Summary on your profile similar to the objective on your resumé, as LinkedIn is the digital version of your resumé. He also says it’s very important to build your connections. Start with friends, siblings, parents, friends of parents, neighbors and classmates. LinkedIn tells you how you’re connected to a posted job based on the people in your network. “The larger your network, the better you can leverage it to get a job,” he explains.

Real-life connections matter, too
As Rosenbaum describes, resumés and LinkedIn work the best when you have formed connections with a lot of people. “Once you break into the professional world, you’re going to connect to jobs through friends, colleagues, former bosses. It isn’t as much about who you know as it is about knowing a lot of people,” he said. If you’re just posting your resumé on job posting boards, your chances of getting noticed are slim — you need to know people in order to get the process moving.

> For more help landing the job, take Next Step Academy’s short Interviewing course.



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