Friday, February 26, 2010

Receptionist Wanted

The ideal canidate will perform a variety of administrative functions and support task. This individual will be able to wrok independently with little or no supervision. this person must be exceedingly well organized, flexible and enjoy the administrative challenges of suppporting a small office and programs.

Strong Candidates:
2+years office support experience
Have exceptional interpersonal/communications skills
Thrive on deadlines and overcoming obstales to reach goals
Seek to elevate their level of success
Enjoy a high level of responsiblity
Good MS Word, Excell, and outlook skills
Outstanding customer service skills
Accurate typing abilities
Support experience in profession services, sales or marketing environment
Construction/Engeneering industry experience preferred

Answer phones
Schedule Appointments
Compose memos, transcribe notes
Generate reports
Creates and prepares presentations
Gives Information to callers
Handles multiple projects and prepares and monitors invoices and expense reports.


The encouraging news regarding the economy may be easing hiring fears, as employers signal an increase in their plans to hire in the new year, according to CareerBuilder’s 2010 Job Forecast. While employers continue to closely monitor the progress of recovery for the US economy, they are beginning to consider hiring strategies designed to preserve the health and growth of their businesses for the future. Career Builder surveyed more than 2,700 hiring managers and human resource professionals nations wide across industries.

“ There have been many signs over the past few months that point to the healing of the US economy, especially the continued decrease in the number of jobs lost per month, a trend that will hopefully carry over into the new year,” said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder. “Although 20 percent of employers plan to add headcount in 2010, up from 14 percent last year, still remains cautious in regards to their hiring, we are headed in the right direction but should not expect to see actual job growth until at least Q2 201


Twenty percent of employers plan to increase their number of full-time permanent employees in 2010, up from 14 percent in 2009. Nine percent say they plan to decrease headcount in 2010, down sharply from 16 percent in 2009. Sixty-one percent don’t plan to change staff levels, while 10 percent say they are unsure.

Eleven percent of employers plan say they pal to add part-time employers in 2010, up slightly from 9 percent in 2009. Eight percent say they plan to decrease their part-time help in 2010, down from 14 percent in 2009. Sixty-nine percent plan no change in headcount, while 13 percent are unsure.

Employers in the West are planning to increase their headcounts more in 2010 than the other regions of the country. Nearly one-quarter of employers (24 percent) in the West say they plan to add full-time workers in 2010, compared to 21 percent in the Northeast, 20 percent in the South and 16 percent in the Midwest.

While plans to decrease headcounts in 2010 are down sharply across all regions, employers in Northeast still plan to trim headcounts by 10 percent, followed by an 8 percent decrease in the South, West and Midwest.

Staffing for Recovery

Five ways to strengthen your business without increasing your costs

Running lean doesn’t mean having to forego opportunity. The key to controlling labor cost- without sacrificing resources- is flexible staffing.

At PrideStaff, we help organizations develop flexible staffing plans. By creating more strategic workforce models, we provide organizations with just-in-time access to talent- used only demand peaks. We can help your company enhance productivity, minimize payroll and benefits expenses, and still have access to the people and skills you need to take advantage of new opportunities.

Here are five ways PrideStaff can help you in prepare for the coming revovery:

1. Improve Efficiency in Key Areas.
Are your most talented and productive employees losing too much time to low value tasks? By supplementing your core staff with well-qualified temporary employees, your top performers will have more time to focus on their most critical job functions.

2. Capitalize on New Business Opportunities.
At your current staffing levels, do you have the capacity to increase output, pursue new markets, or implement growth initiatives? PrideStaff can show you how to create a flexible staffing plan that will give you on-demand access to people with the skill and experience you need to overcome capacity constraints- without increasing your overhead.

3. Create New Products and Services.
Are you looking to expand your product or service line? As your workforce partner, PrideStaff can recruit people with the experience and knowledge you need to ensure a successful launch. Whether you need people to fill a project or full-time role, we can source the talent you require for a fraction of the cost of hiring consultants or full-time employees.

4. Build a Stronger Bench.
Even if you don’t have immediate hiring needs, now is the time to plan for the future, PrideStaff can help you create a proactive recruiting strategy in advance of your hiring needs. Then, when you are ready to hire, you’ll already have a strong bench of talent that requires minimal training and ramp up time.

5. Gain Flexibility.
Is your business equipped to handle fluctuating demands? During the economic rebound we will undoubtedly see widely fluctuating peaks and valleys in our workloads. By taking more strategic approach to staffing PrideStaff will help you adjust your workforce levels to workflow- supplying support when demand is high, without the overhead when demand is lower.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

DYK? Application of 75-Mile Rule to Staffing Firms

Under the regulations, an employee is not eligible for leave unless the employer employs 50 or more employees within 75 miles of the employee's work site. In the case of temporary employees, the rules specifiy that the work site is the temporary staffing office from which employees are assigned, not the client's place of business. Thus, all employees assigned from a temporary staffing office- even if a client work site is more than 75 miles from the office- are included in the head count for the purpose of determining the eligibility of both temporary and full-time staff employees. To avoid undue hardship to small tempory staffing offices, the staffing industry had urged that staffing firms be allowed to exclude their temporary employees in determining the eligibility of their full-time staffs. DOL declined to adopt such a two-tiered counting test. In meetings with industry representiatives, DOL officials said that there was no practical way to apply such a test only to staffing firms because other businesses also assign employees from central offices to work at remote client locations and that it would create significant administrative problems.

36 Creative ways to get your Ideas and Values across

The Olympics showed us that the athletes with the best plan for the race often gain the performance edge that makes all the difference. In this Innovative Idea, you'll see how this same approach to planning can make a big difference in the performance of your team. Even if you have a team of world-class talent, the process outlined in this article can help ensure you come out with gold medal performances!

1. Look at your business card. Does it have anything distinctive about it?

Is there anything that represents you as a unique human being? If not, turn it over and add something on the human level such as a quotation, a sticker, a motto, or a graphic or picture of something you love.

2. Have a contest with employees—"If my company/department were a T-shirt, this is what it would say..." Then have them actually design the shirt. Photograph or videotape the results.

3. Send a handwritten note to at least one customer a day.

4. Keep a bulletin board in your office of pictures of regular customers and their families. Send birthday cards to them on their special day.

5. Put a specially wrapped package of M&M’s (or any other candy which might represent your company) in every package you ship out with a note saying, "We’re glad you’re our customer."

6. Once a month encourage the senior managers to do something creative for all employees or for employees in their divisions: cook them breakfast, bring around an ice cream cart, serve them doughnuts and coffee, or wash the windshields of their cars as they arrive at work.

7. Have a company poster party for all frustrated/aspiring artists to create signs and posters that demonstrate the company’s values. Display them in clear plastic frames throughout the building and move them once a week so that everyone can see all of them.

8. Add a quotation, graphic, cartoon, or seasonal reminder to memos and fax cover sheets. Make them fun and interesting!

9. Create a company mascot which goes along with the spirit of the company. For example, Rosenbluth Travel uses a salmon because they’re always “swimming upstream!”

10. Have a “Laugh a Day” bulletin board where you display appropriate cartoons and humorous writings.

11. Designate one room as the company “Whine Cellar,” the place for anyone to go who is having a bad day or wants to gripe. Put a sign on the door and have fun decorating it (in black?).

12. Take a look at your office—what does it say about your human level? Always display in your office one or two reminders of things you really love.

13. Create a service guarantee for your work unit. For example, a suburban hospital says, “If you’re not seen in our emergency room by a professional in 15 minutes, your visit is free!”

14. Have a Four A’s jar (Acknowledge, Appreciate, Affirm, Assure). Keep it filled with wonderful, uplifting thoughts for anyone who needs one.

15. Purchase pieces of clear acrylic for blotters on each employee’s desk. Have the employee create a collage under the blotter which contains creative reminders and examples of the company’s values, such as photos, quotations, cartoons, mission statements, customer service models, slogans or signs.

16. Post “Street” signs to name hallways in your building. Choose names which communicate your company’s mission or values.

17. Plan a “Bring your family to work” day for your organization.

18. Think of something creative you could offer your customers as a “free” sample. The Savings Bank of Rockford, CT, gives its customers a dime taped on a foldover card that says, “Who says we don’t give free samples?”

19. Invite your customers to a party planned by employees.

20. Find out at least one personal thing about each of your customers. Then acknowledge that in some way as you work with them. (Stamps from places you visit, a Cubs baseball hat for their children, a message of condolence when their favorite sports team loses, a book for a new baby, articles clipped about their hobbies and interests, etc.).

21. Provide a sick room (or several) for employees' children. Equip them with a bed, T.V., and perhaps some books and toys.

22. Encourage employees to sign up for an individual or small group lunch with the president or CEO of the company just to talk. Hold these “lunches with management” on a regular basis.

23. Hold “grapevine” meetings of all employees at least once a month to enhance communication and get worries and concerns out in the open.

24. Sponsor community service projects with employee participation—clean up litter, help feed the homeless, build houses with Habitat for Humanity, or hold educational fairs for the community.

25. Hold spontaneous celebrations. Bring in jugs of apple cider and doughnuts, or cookies and milk, or Coke and chips just to boost everyone’s spirits.

26. Make sure there is a human level in your company newsletter. Include customer service stories, company legends, pictures of employees, personal and family events and successes, customer feedback, ideas and resources for personal growth, cartoons, graphics, and quotes.

27. Create a personal motto to represent what your mission is or what you “stand for.” (Mine is “Spreading Contagious Enthusiasm.”)

28. Collect favorite employee recipes for a company cookbook.

29. Think of creative enhancements you can add to your product or service. Zanos Hair Designs gives complimentary neck and shoulder massages and one of the employees brings you your car when you get your nails done. Some bakeries give a free cookie to customers children.

30. At least once a year let each employee change jobs with someone else in the company for a half day.

31. Send a calendar of quotations that exemplify your company’s values (one for each day or week of the year) to all your customers as a gift.

32. Encourage departments or divisions within the company to hold theme parties during lunch to appreciate their internal customers.

33. Appoint someone in the organization as Manager of Creativity, Vision, and Values. Give them the responsibility for checking activities of every department to ensure they are in line with the company’s vision and values.

34. Humanize your voice mail message. (Mine ends with “I hope your day is filled with peace and joy.”)

35. Ask each employee to make a list of the best recognitions (things that cost little or nothing) and rewards (things that cost some money) that anyone could give to them. Keep these in their employee file and USE these ideas when the employee excels in some way.

36. Have a cartoon or joke box in a central location. Encourage employees to contribute to it when they are having a good day and to take from it when they are having a bad one.

Interviewing to Take Home the Gold

Interviewing is like being selected to compete in the Olympics: you have outperformed hundreds or thousands of competitors and are down to the final round. You are now competing with the best of the best. How can you leave with the gold? Here are keys to making your interview a day for the champion.

• Get the company's annual report from its Web site, if available
• Visit its Web site to read about the direction of the company and any current media coverage
• Look over the Standard and Poors Corporate Records
• For smaller companies, call the city's Chamber of Commerce

For every company, you want the following company information:

• Services and/or products
• Competition
• Sales: any large increase or decrease and why
• New products/services available from the company
• International operations
• Any media information on the company in the last year

The Handshake

It tells a story about each person. Do you come from the top and give the power handshake? Do you shake hands very lightly? These examples may seem simple, but it is easy to start off poorly with a bad handshake. Avoid the light delicate handshake and the powerful over-the-top controlling handshake. Give a firm, full-handed handshake with members of both sexes.

Prepare Yourself but do not Memorize

If you try to memorize a response to the question, "What is your biggest strength?" you will blurt it out, privately congratulating yourself on your memory while the interviewer stares in disbelief at how quickly you answered that question without seeming to give it much consideration. When your interviewer follows with, "Why do you consider that your biggest strength?" you realize that you were not prepared for that one. Instead, think of some challenges in your work background--positive and negative--and tie your answer to those challenges, your response, and the results. For example:

Challenge: Your sales division's productivity decreased, and it seemed your division would not meet/exceed annual goals.

Response: You observed the staff to see where bottlenecks were occurring and determined a need for additional employee development and training. Then you focused on employee development through intense training.

Results: You were responsible for hitting corporate budget at year-end, and was noted by management for exceptional problem-solving and turnaround capabilities.

Now when asked, "What is one of your biggest strengths?" your response might be: "My biggest strength is my ability to identify potential problem areas, solve the problem, and produce results. An example of this would be when my division's productivity decreased and it seemed as though we would not meet/exceed our annual goals..." and continue with the story above.

This same scenario would also work if the interviewer had asked, "Describe a difficult situation and how you handled it" or, "What would management say about you?" Thinking through specific situations will allow you to choose scenarios most appropriate to the question.

Have Questions for the Interviewer
Here are some good ones:

• How does my job fit with the mission of the organization, corporate performance, or profitability?
• What will I be contributing to the organization?
• What makes your company different from others?
• What is your corporate culture?
• What differentiates your company from your competition?
• What significant changes has the company experienced in the past couple of years?
• How would you describe the most successful employees in your company?

Mental Preparation

This may seem hokey, but mental preparation is proven to be a good tactic in any high-stress situation. As you arrive early for the interview (at least 15 minutes), and you are waiting to be called in, mentally prepare for your interview. Picture the interview going smoothly, the interviewer asking questions, and your answering them perfectly. Imagine the interviewer telling you that you seem perfect for the job, as you leave even more excited about the position. These are some of the things that should be going through your mind. If you are nervous, start your mental preparation by taking deep breaths and thinking, "You are" as you inhale and, "relaxed" as you exhale. Repeat this procedure until you are relaxed. Avoid thinking, "What if they don't like me?" or "What if I get stumped?" and focus instead on relaxing. Just try it--mental visualization worked for the Bulls and Phil Jackson, and it will work for you.

Close of the Interview

You are ahead of the competition and on your way to the gold medal, but you get a cramp. Do you stop? Not a chance. You have to cross that finish line, just as you have to close the sale of yourself in the interview. The end of the interview is your time to close with a positive, "very interested in what you have learned" finale. When the interviewer is closing with, "Well, if you have no further questions, then we are done," that is your cue to say one of the following:

• Actually, I'd like to know how I should proceed from here. Should I contact you or will you be in contact?
• How soon will I hear from you?
• What is the process from here?
• What would distinguish one potential candidate joining your company from another?
• How do I prove my commitment to the organization?


You leave the interview and feel good about the position. Now go to your car and write down what just happened. Write the topics discussed, the characteristics the interviewer described for the position, and other details. This will help you write a thank you letter that shows both your interest and that you are a perfect match for the position.

There are, of course, as many ways to succeed in an interview as there are Olympic gold medal winners. The best advice is to relax and be yourself. Remember that your interviewer once interviewed for his/her job and understands the intensity of the interview process. By being as prepared as possible for your interview, you will enhance the qualities that have already made you a great candidate. Just remember that it takes preparation and know-how to play the game with strategy and excellence to win.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Jumping Ship: As recession ends, out-of-touch employers run risk of losing talent

Jumping Ship: As recession ends, out-of-touch employers run risk of losing talent

By Austin Light

CHARLOTTE — According to a survey of 700 companies and 5,000 workers released last week, a chilly disconnect between employers and employees could lead to a mass exodus of talent as the recession ends if employers aren’t careful.

The study was conducted in May and June by on-line job search engine and the Human Capital Institute, a think tank and research organization that studies human resources.

According to the study, which was designed to examine the effects of the recession, employers are significantly overestimating just how content workers are these days. While 84 percent of employers believe workers are happy to “just have a job” in a down economy, 57 percent of employees feel otherwise.

The study also found that 57 percent of workers believe employers are exploiting the recession to drive longer hours and lower pay.

Denise Dwight Smith, who directs the career center at UNC Charlotte, said such figures can be expected given the current state of the economy.

“It’s a trend, actually. In times of recession there is a disconnect … and then afterwards a mass movement,” she said. “That doesn’t mean employers shouldn’t be concerned.”

According to the study, employers are concerned, at least a little. About 36 percent of employers said they were more worried about losing top talent than they were just 18 months ago.

Those fears could be well-grounded, according to Will Sparks, an associate professor of management science at Queens University’s McColl School of Business.

Between top talent that can find a job in any economy, and younger generations more prone to leave jobs for better opportunities, the risk of losing employees is greater, Sparks said.

“Employers need to recognize that the traditional models of motivation and retention do not apply,” he said. “Things that worked in the past do not work now.”
Sparks pointed to the economic crises and a new generation of workers — “the Millennials” — as contributors to the growing disconnect. Employers who fail to address the changing landscape could be in danger of losing their best employees when the economy turns around, he said.

“Millennials, especially, have a different view on what their work-life balance should be,” Sparks said. “I don’t think we’ll see a mass exodus until everything fully recovers, but when it does, they’ll probably be the first to go if they feel there are better opportunities.”

For now, though, Sparks said he doesn’t see many Queen City workers leaving their jobs because at the moment “there’s no where else to go,” especially in the banking industry.

“We’ve had a catastrophic event with Wachovia being bought by Wells Fargo, and then the losses at Bank of America — it’s not the same job market that it was,” Sparks said. “I have MBA students come in and tell me they don’t know where they would go if they could leave their jobs.”

Employers Who Do It Right

Alston & Bird, a national law firm, has been on Fortune Magazine’s Best Places To Work list for 10 consecutive years. The reason? To put it simply, communication, said Claudine Woods, who manages human resources for the Charlotte office.

“We really go out of our way to keep people talking,” Woods said. “Communication is really the key.”

The firm holds town hall meetings once or twice a year where employees can ask whatever is on their minds. “Fireside chats” provide smaller forums to discuss concerns specific to employees’ departments. The firm also has daily meetings, an on-line suggestion box and multiple opportunities for employees to meet outside of work for community service.

“These are the things that are intrinsically motivating to today’s workforce,” Sparks said. “They are looking for community service, collaboration … value and connection with their employers.”

Alston & Bird ranked 36th out of 100 this year, down five spots from its 2008 ranking. Among other factors, Fortune cited the firm’s family-friendly policies and work-life perks.

Being on the Fortune list for a decade has another benefit, Woods said: The survey goes to 350 to 400 of the firm’s employees at all management levels, and the firm can compare the annual results to measure morale and satisfaction.

This year’s results weren’t as dynamic as they had been in years past, Woods

“We don’t know for sure that people aren’t feeling resentful, or that they are feeling the way the ( study) indicates some are,” Woods said. “But we’re doing all we can to keep morale up and communication open.”

Let’s Talk About It

According to the study, communication is a central strategy for staying on the same page with employees during a recession.

“Lack of communication creates anxiety that stymies productivity,” the study stated. “By communicating honestly and consistently with your employees, you send the message that everyone is working together to solve problems.”
Sparks agreed. “You have to talk about these things. Because talking about them takes some of the fear out of it, and that’s the way to create a healthy environment of candor.”

According to Smith, employers should not only ensure employees have an outlet for airing concerns and frustrations, but also should acknowledge the problems the economy creates and show appreciation when workers handle them adeptly.

“A lot of people might be dealing with family issues at home; maybe they used to be a dual-income home and now they’re not,” she said. “Good employers will acknowledge that and help employees work around those issues.”

But, according to Smith, the advice to retain talent and improve miscommunication is deceptively simple. Good communication, flexible scheduling and employee development isn’t always as easy to implement as it may seem.

“I’ve seen employers that are really trying to do the right things, and it doesn’t always work,” she said. “But if you keep your employees informed and reward them for talking and communicating, you’re on the right track.”

Sparks cautioned companies not to be too quick to dismiss employees’ concerns, particularly if they have talented staff they want to keep.

“It behooves employers — and Charlotte — to think about this,” he said. “We don’t want to be behind, because we don’t want our talent going somewhere else when everything gets better.”

How to Write a Résumé That Doesn't Annoy People

A Google search for "résumé" results in over 178,000,000 hits, whereas "possum" nets only 5,340,000. Thus the documentation of work experience is 33 and 1/3 more popular than arboreal marsupials. But what does this really tell us? Not much, but neither does the average résumé that comes across my desk. Some excerpts: "Administered resolution of issues and implementation of ideas surfaced by individuals."

"Partaking in meetings designed to enhance collaboration, identify and develop strategies to ensure success regarding the accomplishment of goals."

"Experienced leader with superior interpersonal skills and business acumen talented at building productive relationships across a global organization."


We all know that there are more jobs being lost than created, and that an opening will get dozens, if not hundreds, of applicants. But in our fear to avoid saying anything that might get our résumé tossed out of the pile, we end up saying nothing at all. As a result, the hiring manager feels like she's reading tea leaves, not CVs. One feels forced to come up with arbitrary rules to narrow the field. Nobody with an objective statement, no résumés longer than 3 pages, no serif fonts. I'm not immune. Personally, I look at the width of the dashes. Microsoft Word will helpfully attempt to make a hyphen, n-dash, or m-dash based on the spacing you use when writing. Many people don't know this, and they don't notice that their dashes are all different lengths. Does this mean they are more or less qualified to be a project planner? I don't know, but it's easy for me to say, "If you don't know that your own résumé is inconsistent, how can you be expected to supervise a multi-million dollar project?"

Other people have their own peccadilloes. The best you can do is try to achieve the maximum content with minimum peculiarity. Here's a list of nine things to make your résumé stand a better chance of survival:

1. Get the formatting right. Line up bullet points, dates, headings. Wacky spacing will get you questioned about skills that have nothing to do with what you can do on the job. And please learn to put dates flush against the right margin. The right-aligned tab stop remains a mystery as deep as an ocean for many resume writers.

2. Insert dates for everything. If you've got a gap, explain it in your cover letter. But don't leave the dates off a job or a degree. Maybe you're worried they'll think you're too old or too young — but at best you'll look sloppy. At worst, sneaky.

3. Fill up on the buzzwords. Yes, buzzwords are typically "bad" for clarity, but you have to get past the HR department first, and they're screening for matches with the words in the job description. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX), consumer goods industry, certified project manager, SPL, BMN, FLB...whatever it is that matches the requirements, put it in.

4. Choose verbs that mean something. "Assisted," "Worked on," "Contributed to" and so on don't convey much to a prospective employer. Instead, say what you did: "Wrote," "Designed," or "Managed." The more specific, the better.

5. Rewrite your résumé for each job application. If you really want a job, your prospective employer isn't going to be impressed by your inability to adjust one 3-page document to meet their needs. Highlight the top 3 to 7 things you've done that match up with the requirements of the job.

6. State career objectives or outside interests — but be very careful. Do you know that they're looking for a "motivated team player who wants to excel in international fashion and likes skiing and hot tubbing?" Great, put that in. Otherwise, save the non-job stuff for the cover letter. Or better yet, the interview.

7. The further into your past, the less detail you should have. Don't have 13 bullets on a job from 10 years ago.

8. Keep it short. . A five-page résumé may be justified, but you've got to make it clear through headings and organization why you need so much space. If you've got a list of publications or industry conferences you've spoken at, great, but put it at the end as a separate section. Consider the résumé of a CEO. He doesn't need to say that he "attended meetings, assigned work" and whatever other tasks. He ran a company. One line.

9. No typos. Your résumé is like the restroom in a restaurant — as Anthony Bourdain says, the one room everyone sees. And if you can't keep that clean, what's it like in the kitchen?

What do you think? Are there things you see in résumés that cause you to toss them in the "probably not" pile? Have you ever had your résumé prevent you from getting a job?

Top 10 Social Sites for Finding a Job

Dan Schawbel is the author of Me 2.0: Build a Powerful Brand to Achieve Career Success, and owner of the award winning Personal Branding Blog.

Here at Mashable, we’re trying hard to help you stay afloat and succeed in the current economic crisis. We’ve told you how to build the ultimate social media resume, sites to visit if you’ve been laid off, and the secrets to finding your next job using social media tools. Now we’ll look at ten incredible social sites to help you in your job search.

Some of these sites allow you to craft a resume, while others are networking platforms that contain job listings. By signing up for all ten, you increase your chances of getting a job and decrease the amount of time you’ll spend searching for a new one. Three of the listed sites can be combined with other sites to be more impactful. In addition to joining, creating profiles and searching for jobs, I encourage you to support these sites with either a traditional website or blog, so that you have more to present to employers, in addition to your profile.

Have another social network you’d recommend? Tell us more about it in the comments.

1. LinkedIn

LinkedIn is by far the #1 spot for job seekers, those currently employed, marketers who are looking to build lists and salespeople who are seeking out new clients. With 35 million users, including recruiters and job seekers, LinkedIn is quite a hot spot. Of course, due to the current state of the economy, it’s simple to understand why LinkedIn is more popular than ever.

The problem is that most job seekers don’t optimize their profile, cultivate their network, join and participate in groups, use applications and exchange endorsements. That is basically everything you should be doing in a nutshell. I also recommend that you use a distinct URL ( and an avatar that best represents you and is consistent with the picture on your other social sites.

When you search for a job, recognize who in your network might help you get to the hiring manager. You’re given 1st, 2nd and 3rd degree connections on LinkedIn that you should be using to secure a job opening.

2. Plaxo With Simply Hired

Plaxo is a social network that resembles LinkedIn to a certain degree. You’re able to create your own profile with a section about you, your contact information and your “pulse stream,” which is made up of your presence on social media sites such as Twitter. You’re even able to share your photo album and send eCards, which is a nice differentiator.

The real value in Plaxo is the address book that keeps track of all of your contact information, including a Yahoo! Map indicating where your contacts live. Plaxo, which is owned by Comcast, is also integrated with Simply Hired, which is a job aggregator that searches thousands of job sites and companies and aggregates them in a single location for you. After building your Plaxo profile, use it as part of the recruitment process when applying for jobs with Simply Hired for success.

3. Twitter With Blog or LinkedIn URL

Twitter is an amazing tool if you can unlock its power. It’s taken me months to understand how conversations flow and how I can add to the discussion. Twitter breaks down communication barriers and lets you talk directly to hiring managers, without having to submit a resume immediately to a machine.

Although Twitter is probably one of the best networking tools on the planet, it needs to be supplemented with a blog or LinkedIn profile. There’s no way you can hire someone based on a Twitter profile, without having a link from that profile to something else that gives more information on that job seeker. You get to add one URL to your profile, so choose wisely.

4. Jobster

Jobster isn’t spoken about nearly enough, yet it is a powerful platform for networking with employers who are offering jobs, while you’re searching. You can upload your resume, embed your video resume, showcase links to your site, your picture and tag your skills, which is a unique differentiator. You can search for open positions and see who the person is who posted the job. Then you can add them to your network and connect with them to find out more about the position.

5. Facebook

Facebook can be used to get jobs. There are two main ways of acquiring a job through Facebook. The first is to go to your Facebook marketplace, which lists job openings or other opportunities in your network. Aside from jobs, there are “items wanted” and a “for sale” listing. When searching for jobs, you’ll be able to see who listed the item and then message them to show your interest.

When you find a job opening that you’re interested in, you’ll be able to message the hiring manager directly. For instance, the subject line of the message will auto-populate with “Principal Web Developer in Littleton, MA” in the subject line. The second way to get a job using Facebook is to join groups and fan pages to find people with common interests and to network with them.

6. Craigslist

Craigslist is an extremely valuable job search tool if you’re not looking to work for a big brand name company, such as P&G or GE. Most of the positions on Craigslist are for consultants (design/programming help) and at small to midsize companies that are hiring. There are new listings every day and if you wake up to this site every morning and refresh the page, you have a good chance at getting a job sooner rather than later.

7. MyWorkster With Indeed

MyWorkster focuses on exclusive networks for colleges, allowing students and alumni to connect for exclusive career opportunities. This site isn’t valuable to you if you didn’t go to college though. This social network allows you to create a professional profile and network with potential employers.

For a free account, you get a profile, instant messenger built in the site, groups, events, your resume and more. The big differentiator is that it uses Facebook Connect to get your information. Here is an example of a profile page. MyWorkster also has job listings, which are provided by Indeed, a job search engine and aggregator, which is very similar to Simply Hired.

8. VisualCV

VisualCV understands the importance of personal branding in a job search. Instead of a traditional resume, you get your own branded webpage, where you can add video, audio, images, graphs, charts, work samples, presentations and references. VisualCVs not only let you stand out from the crowd, but communicate your value in a way that’s not possible with static text.

After you’ve created your VisualCV, you can display it publicly or privately, email it to a recruiter, save it as a PDF or forward the URL, which will rank high for your name. On the site, you can search for jobs and apply directly using your VisualCV. Everybody’s favorite venture capitalist, Guy Kawasaki, is on their board.

9. JobFox

JobFox, like online dating, tries to pair you up with a job that best fits you. Their differentiator is their “Mutual Suitability SystemTM” that enables them to match your wants and needs to those of employers to find the best relationship. The system learns about your skills, experiences, and goals and then presents you with jobs.

Then there’s the “Jobfox Intro,” where both the applicant and company get emails to encourage the connection. Just like VisualCV, you get your own branded website, with a personal web address to send to employers. JobFox was created by Rob McGovern, the founder of

10. Ecademy

Ecademy, like LinkedIn, is a prime source for professional networking. You have your own online profile, where you can tell people what you do. You can join business networking groups based around your expertise and exchange messages with other members privately. You can also ask for introductions from friends, just like LinkedIn. Although, there isn’t a job search area on the site, 80% of jobs are from networking and this place is dedicated to it.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Did You Know? "DYK"

Majority of hiring managers base their decision to hire, not only by interviewing and the face value of resumes, but by a variety of assessments as well.

In the upcomming weeks, PrideStaff will be administering assessments in a variety of areas.

Please continue to check back weekly to see which assessments PrideStaff is offering at no charge.

Unlock The Potential of Your Team

Before we can unlock human potential, we need to know what it is. Human potentialis defined as an unexposed ability and hidden power. For a rock
seated on a cliff, it has a dormant ability, a reserved power, but for you and I, it simply means unused success, hidden talents and capped capability.

To unlock human potential is to do what you can do but have yet to do it. We must also operate within the laws of human potential:

1. Every great thing starts potentially with an idea.

There is so much you can draw from our human brains, but yet we are told, the majority of us use only 3% of the brain power. What do you see when you are given an apple seed? One apple tree or an orchard of apple trees!

"Instant gratification is a close friend of laziness."

2. Nothing potentially great is ever instant.

With the advance in technology, most of us have become so used to the idea of instant gratification. We want things done yesterday, that’s how impatient we have become. One apple seed can take years before turning into an apple orchard. Likewise, unlocking human potential takes time too. Have you been realistic about the time you can reach your goals?

3. Your potential is released by hard work.

Instant gratification is a close friend of laziness. When you meet someone who seeks after instant gratification, you are most likely looking at a lazy person as well. Too many people have a misguided idea of the difference between working smarter and working harder. The best policy to adopt, in order to unlock the human potential in you, is to work hard smartly.

4. To maximize your potential, you need to use your talent and ability to its full capacity.

If you are in a new relationship or new business and if you have yet to experience disappointment, discouragement, tiredness, sense of wanting to give up, you are probably not using your talent and ability to its full capacity!

5. Constant comparison with others can harm your human potential.

Your biggest competition hides within you. Your business competitors can pose no threat to you if you have already conquered yourself. Take stock of what you have already achieved. Give an honest assessment of yourself or ask a close business associate or your spouse to do that.

6. Past experiences can harm your human potential.

Are you carrying too much emotional baggage in your life? Any ordinary human can look at their past and see failures, but it takes an extraordinary human to look at them and see valuable lessons. What you see about your past can determine how much potential you can unlock.

7. Potential is maximized when you invest in others

Are you sharing your potential? The highest form of learning happens when you learn to teach. I know I am most alert and committed when I am accountable to others. The greatest ROI in life is not achieved with stocks and shares but with the people whom you have invested time with to share your potential.

Questions You Should Ask During The Job Interview

At some point, usually at the conclusion of the interview, you may be asked, “Do you have any questions?” A common answer to this question is, “No, I think you’ve covered everything very well.” This is the wrong answer! You have passed up your opportunity to ask some critical questions that may make a a difference as to whether you want to work for this company.

Here are some rules and basic questions to consider asking when asked if you have questions:

Rule #1

Ask questions. This is a critical time for you to find out insider information about the company or position.

Rule #2

Formulate your questions based on information you hear during the interview.

Rule #3

Bring a list of potential questions to ask, at least four or five, as a back up. Example: You’ve been discussing your system; could you tell me what has been tried in the past to deal with the problem? (Listen carefully to the answer given, as this may be your chance to inform the interviewer of our past experience with the same type of problem.)

"Paying attention to clues and listening are the keys to asking intelligent questions."

Question #1

There are a lot of companies laying off right now. How has this company been able to maintain the workforce and continue to hire new employees? (You’ve done your research and know some of the reasons, but are interested in the insider point of view.)

Question #2

Could you tell me about the way the job has been performed in the past? And, what improvements you’d like to see happen? (This is an opportunity to convince the interviewer that you have what he/she is looking for by giving a specific, similar past experience story.)

Question #3

How would you describe the culture or spirit in this company? (One of the interviewer’s concerns is whether you will fit into the company culture. You need more information to see if this would be a good environment and fit for you.)

Question #4
What are the challenges I would face in this position over the next three months?(Your first 90 days on the job is a critical time for any new hire. You need to know what will be expected of you as you start your learning curve.)

Question #5

When I responded to your question regarding my past experience handling stress, you commented that you have your share of that here. Could you tell me more about the stress level here? (Clues are given and problems alluded to during the interview – listen carefully and turn up your intuition. Ask questions if you need clarification.

Question #6

May I ask what your background with the company is? (There’s a big difference between showing an interest in someone and grilling them. Interviewers don’t like being cross-examined. Ask friendly questions and be alert to clues regarding this person’s satisfaction with the company.)

Question #7

How would you describe your management style and interaction with your staff? (You may need to read between the lines here. Make sure this manager’s communication and style fit with your ideas and values.)

Question #8

Ideally, what qualities are needed to get this job done? (This is a chance for you to sell yourself, and tell once more why you are such an excellent fit for the position – the added-value you would bring to the company.)

Question #9

I am very interested in pursuing this job further. What is the next step in the hiring process? (It is best to find out what the hiring plan is so that you will know the sense of urgency and how to follow up.)

The types of questions you ask will be determined by the conversation and types of questions asked of you during the interview. Pay attention to the interviewer’s body language to determine how many questions to ask – relaxed and willing to talk, or in a hurry and running late?

Lastly, make sure your questions are succinct and to the point, demonstrating your knowledge and interest.