Anyone Who Feels Like They’re Not Reaching Their Full Potential Needs to Try This

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There are few things worse than being in a place where you feel stuck, complacent, stagnant; like you could be getting somewhere much better, much farther in your career, so much faster.

And while some employers do invest in professional development and growth for employees, these opportunities can often feel like slow growth—a small improvement on your existing skill set by going to a conference, a new ability refined over the course of a year with the help of a mentor as you’re primed for a promotion.

There’s nothing wrong with growing as you go. But if you’re ready to grow big, then we think it’s time to be proactive, to no longer rely on our employers to push us forward but to invest in growing our knowledge ourselves. The good news? There are plenty of online classes and in-person programs you can take that won’t interfere with your 9-to-5, but that can have a big impact on it.

Here are four common reasons we tend to feel stuck, and in each case, how leveling up your skills can help you get out of a rut and closer to the future you imagine.

You’re Not Doing the Work You’re Meant to Do

This is an all-too-common feeling among professionals today: You know you’re unhappy with your current job, but you aren’t really sure what you want to be doing instead. While there are many ways to find your passions, diving deeper into little curiosities by taking classes related to them can open up your mind to possibilities and hopefully give you more clarity about what you do and don’t enjoy.

Here’s one example: Apryl DeLancey, Founder and Data Scientist at ElPortoShark.com, credits General Assembly’s 12-week Data Science Immersive course with helping her find her way back to the work she loves: “I originally signed up for the Python class to refresh my programming skills. After then taking the Data Science class, I quickly remembered everything I had forgotten about (but loved) in grad school!” Her class project—a data research project on shark sightings—led to ElPortoShark.com, a departure from her work in marketing and her now full-time passion and profession.

Even if taking a class doesn’t magically point you to your calling, it can still be a valuable learning experience. Like DeLancey, you may find that your renewed passion will lead to an entirely new career—or you may become very clear that you shouldn’t go down a path you were curious about. Engaging your brain in a new way could even help invigorate or pivot the work you’re currently doing. Explore topics that light you up, and see where it takes you.

You’re Not Moving Up Quickly Enough

If you love your job, you want to rise up through the ranks, and you need to show your boss what you’re capable of. Taking a course in a relevant subject matter is a great way to show off not just your additional skills, but also your dedication to your work.

Of course, you should be strategic about your class choices. Consider what is required of the role you want to move into and focus your learning there. Will you need to learn more about data and analytics? There’s a course for that. Will you be speaking in front of bigger audiences? There’s one for that, too. Whether you need expertise in broad topics like management or communication or niche fields like user design and UX, there are myriad courses that can help you develop the necessary skills for the role you want.

If you’re not sure what, exactly, you should focus on get to the next level, reach out to your network. Poll people who have jobs one to two steps ahead of yours (at your company or elsewhere) about what they’ve done to get ahead, then have a sit-down with your boss about your findings and your plan. At some companies, you may even be able to get your professional development paid for! Either way, share key learnings as you progress through your class and look for ways to demonstrate your new skills at every opportunity. You’re working hard to learn more—make sure to show it off!

You’re Not Landing the Jobs You Want

Much like with garnering a promotion, landing a brand-new job often means adding to the skills currently listed on your resume. Whether you’re trying to transition to an entirely new field or simply want a refresher on a topic you know and love, it’s worth looking at courses to help you build the skills you need to land the role of your dreams.

Take a good look at the requirements of the job you want. Those bullet-pointed on the actual listing are helpful to review, but think outside of the box, too. What would be necessary to be exceptional in this role? What would you need to learn? What would help advance the goals of the company? Maybe you’re a marketer who knows your lack of data analysis chops is holding you back, or a graphic designer who wants to learn web design to start applying for different types of roles. If you’re having trouble figuring out what you need to get from your role to where you want to be, consider talking to a career coach or admissions consultant, who may be able to see the gaps you can’t.

Then, find the courses that will help you grow in the specific skill sets this new job requires, do your best work possible, and find the right ways to use your newfound abilities to make your application shine. Yes, you should make sure to list these courses on your resume the right way and talk about them in your cover letter, but more than that you should look for tangible ways to show potential employers what you can do with your skills. For example, you could create a portfolio to show off the work you did in class or put your snazzy abilities into practice by doing a pre-interview project.

You Just Need a Little Inspiration

Pushing yourself to learn something new doesn’t always have to be tied to a specific professional goal. Given that there are courses on topics ranging from public speaking to podcasting to poetry, learning about something that’s interesting to you can help you grow not just as a professional, but as a person, too.

“I’ve been wanting to take an improv class for 10 years, but had never found a three-hour intro class where I could get my feet wet,” says Yolanda Enoch, a digital photo organizer who signed up for just that at General Assembly. “It really changed how I interact with people and start conversations. It’s one of the most impactful things I have ever done to become more comfortable socially.”

No matter why you’re feeling held back in your career, it’s worth taking steps to invest in your professional development. Start browsing classes online or in person to see if something out there sparks your curiosity. Look for a short-form workshop in your budget range, or start saving today so you can take your dream class in a few months. Or, if you can make a case that your continuing education will help your work, ask your company to pay for it.

Whatever you do, start believing today that you deserve to not only pursue the work you love, but to pursue what you love to learn. You’ll grow and succeed personally and professionally in the process.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/anyone-who-feels-like-theyre-not-reaching-their-full-potential-needs-to-try-this

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707 ext. 5 or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

 

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

 

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How to Stay Motivated at Work Even When it Feels Like Everything’s Going Wrong

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Whether your presentation doesn’t go as planned, you learn that you’re not getting the raise you were hoping for, or your co-workers are in terrible spirits, tough days on the job are bound to happen every now and then. It’s just the way it goes.

But just how bad those days go can really depend on how you handle them.

Though we all know how difficult powering through a challenging day at work can be, motivating yourself to stay positive when things aren’t going as planned is a real workplace superpower that can help you rise above the rest of the pack. Read on to learn how you can turn lemons into lemonade for yourself while building major morale for everyone around you, too.

1. Stick to Your Schedule

Though unexpected events or information are often at the heart of a bad day, having a schedule in place can keep you focused on your goals and direction. In fact, starting in the early hours by implementing a solid morning routine is often cited as a smart tactic that can directly impact success. The reason why? Willpower has proven to be highest during AM hours, and powering through a productive morning can help you set the tone for the rest of the workday, no matter what should come your way.

This can be especially important when your work involves engaging with other people, or if there are outside factors that can make you feel easily sidetracked. “When I don’t have a set schedule for my day, I tend to feel unproductive and unmotivated—no matter what happens. So, when I encounter a difficult gatekeeper, it takes a toll on my attitude,” says Ben Garcia, an independent Agent with Aflac Insurance Company. “If you’re like me, setting a schedule will allow you to accomplish your tasks throughout the day and help you feel productive in every circumstance.”

You can also consider shifting your schedule to a format more conducive to riding the wave of a bad day. For example, start each morning by “eating your frog,” a term coined by success coach Brian Tracy that represents your toughest, worst, or most procrastination-inducing task. The last thing you’ll want to do after an upsetting call with a customer or a bad meeting with your boss is that task you’ve been dreading, so make sure you get it out of the way before your day gets away from you.

2. Be Resilient (and Don’t Take it Personally)

Some days simply require a thicker skin. You might get turned away, turned down, told no—maybe even repeatedly. Refusing to quit isn’t easy, but doing it can make a huge difference in reaching your goals.

In fact, taking strides to become more resilient can help you overcome the toughest moments in your career. As Sheryl Sandberg poignantly shared in her powerful commencement speech, “You are not born with a fixed amount of resilience. Like a muscle, you can build it up, draw on it when you need it. In that process you will figure out who you really are—and you just might become the very best version of yourself.”

Experts suggest that, though everyone is different, you can begin to build your resiliency muscle over time by viewing failures as opportunities to learnmaintaining a positive attitude, and being comfortable with not controlling everything. Andrew Zolli, who wrote a popular article about resilience for The New York Times, says you should build your muscle to the point that you can “roll with the waves instead of trying to stop the ocean.”

If you’re in a role that faces direct feedback and rejection, knowing how to roll with it and keep your head up can be extra important. Holly Johnson, an Aflac District Sales Coordinator, says she had to learn to be resilient right from the start in her role, where she spends day in and day out educating potential clients on how Aflac insurance policies can benefit them—and often getting the answer she doesn’t want. She notes, “I’ve learned that no doesn’t always mean ‘no.’ Just because you got five nos doesn’t mean the next one can’t be a yes. A ‘no’ might mean ‘I don’t know’ or even ‘not now.’”

3. Find Perspective

Bad days have a way of making it feel like the world is crashing down—in fact, it’s been proven that troubling experiences affect us much more strongly than positive ones do. An experiment conducted by Harvard Business School professor and co-author of The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement and Creativity at WorkTeresa M. Amabile showcases the power that a setback can have on how you feel about a day of work.

In the study, as explained by The New York Times, 238 professionals working on 26 creative projects answered questions over a few months to share how they felt about their day. Turns out, employees who felt like they were prevented from making progress had the worst days at work. On the flip side, participants who felt that they were moving forward (even with just a small step toward their goals) recorded good days at work. The takeaway? Finding a way to remember and work toward your measurable, overall goals (despite upset or interruptions) actually can help prevent you from deeming the day a complete downer.

For Julia Burns, a District Coordinator at Aflac, perspective is all about remembering why she took her role and why it’s important for her. “My ‘why’ and my vision board always help me re-discover my motivation during the most stressful of times,” Burns says, “It’s the core of my business and the reason I get up each day. It puts all of those happenings into perspective and reminds me exactly why I do what I do and why I love what I do.”

For others, remembering the big picture comes back to the idea of not letting little stressors or small mistakes get you down. Richard Carlson, author of Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff, wisely wrote, “Even though we often mess up, most of us are doing the best that we know how with the circumstances that surround us.” In moments when everything seems to be going wrong, try to bring the things that have gone right to the front of your mind.

4. Surround Yourself With Positivity

As the Harvard Business Review reports, positive work cultures are more productive. So if you’re not getting good vibes from your team on a super challenging day, take a moment to remind yourself that setting the tone is your job too. Challenge yourself to find good things around you—and if they don’t exist, create them yourself.

To start, do your best to provide support to your teammates and treat them with respect, gratitude, trust, and integrity, no matter the circumstances. Harvard research shows that doing so can immediately affect workplace positivity, which in turn is contagious. If you need another incentive to treat the most miserable person in the office well, it’s also been shown that demonstrating care for others can help lift your own spirits.

Another option that might work? Burns suggests, “Surround yourself with uplifting things. It could be motivational signs or quotes in your office, self-help books, uplifting music, a beautiful picture of your happy place. Anything that motivates you to drive your business and keep the future on your horizon. When you feel frustrated, look at your board and remember what you are working toward.”

Figure out what works for you and nail down your personal go-to strategy for staying motivated during tough times on the job. It might take a little bit of practice, but once you know how to lift your spirits back up and keep your momentum going, you’ll be golden. Not to mention, an inspiration to everyone around you.

 

https://www.themuse.com/advice/how-to-stay-motivated-at-work-even-when-it-feels-like-everythings-going-wrong

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707 ext. 5 or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

 

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

7 Life Lessons You Shouldn’t Wait Your Whole Life to Learn

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Life lessons are full of wisdom because they often have to be learned the hard way. However, the worst part about that process is realizing that sometimes, not every opportunity lasts forever. You finally “get it” long after the fact.

If possible, it’s best to learn these seven things sooner rather than later:

1. If You Want to “Do What You Love,” You Have to Work Three Times as Hard as Everyone Else

Most people don’t get to spend their lives doing whatever it is they love. Instead, they do what they are told they should do, or what their parents, town, friends, or peers suggest that they do. Or, they simply pursue nothing close to their heart at all.

But if you want to do what you’re passionate about, you need to see that as a privilege, not an expectation. Those people are not the majority. So if that’s what you truly want, you have to put in the work now.

2. Beneath Anger Is Always Fear

As the wise Yoda says, “Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering.”

Whenever we suffer, especially for long periods of time, at first we believe it’s because of something outside of us—something we hate. And if we make it past that emotion, we find below that hate is a rumble of anger, and certainly something we have held on to for far too long.

But beneath all of that is always fear. A fear of loss. A fear of vulnerability. A fear of letting go. But if you can get to the point of acknowledging the fear, you will see its lighthearted shadow—compassion. And you will be able to move forward.

3. Our Everyday Habits Form Our Future Selves

What you do today is one more action toward who you will be tomorrow. When that action is replicated over the course of a week, you begin to scratch the surface of change. When that action is replicated over the course of a month, you begin to notice a slight difference. When that action is replicated over the course of a year, two years, five years, you may no longer recognize yourself—you will have changed, in that particular way, completely.

Don’t underestimate the power of each and every small habit done over time. For good or bad, your habits determine who you will ultimately become.

4. Your Emotions Take Practice

When we think about practice, we often talk in terms of skill. You practice the piano, or you practice playing hockey. But the thing is, who you are emotionally also takes practice. You can practice humility, or forgiveness. You can practice self-awareness and humor, just as easily as anger, resentment, drama, and conflict.

Who you are, emotionally, is a reflection of the things you consciously (or unconsciously) work on. You weren’t “born” upset. You have merely practiced that emotion far more than you have, say, joy.

5. Everyone Has His or Her Own Agenda

This is quite a cliché phrase, and is often said in a negative context.

But I’m using it differently: It’s worth acknowledging that, at the end of the day, we all must provide for ourselves. We all have our own dreams, goals, aspirations, families, close friends, and significant others, and we all want the same fundamental things.

There are those you can trust, of course, but the best way to keep yourself rooted and at ease is to know that each and every person has his or her own agenda. You can’t control others. You can’t expect them to put you before themselves. And trying to do so may work for a period of time, but eventually, the truth will rise to the surface.

Instead, make it a point to address and help others move toward their own dreams, as you request their help in moving toward yours. The relationship will more smoothly move in the right direction this way.

6. Achievement Will Never Be as Fulfilling as the Journey

It’s one thing to set a goal and enlist the help of others to see its achievement through. It’s entirely another thing to sacrifice your own wellbeing, and the wellbeing of those around you, for that goal and achievement. The high at the end is never worth the emotional strain that takes place to get there. If you’re not able to enjoy the journey with those around you, then the end goal will become meaningless.

7. Working Hard and Laughter Are Not Mutually Exclusive

Building on the previous point, I never understood why people feel that laughing means not taking the matter at hand seriously. The best ideas come through ease. The best flow happens in moments of joy. The human connection begins with laughter, and to laugh while working or solving a problem is to be open to new possibilities.

Some people never learn this—they become grumpy and old. But life is about having fun. And to have fun doesn’t mean, by default, that you’re not “getting anything done.” On the contrary, you can have fun and get more done than you ever thought imaginable.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/7-life-lessons-you-shouldnt-wait-your-whole-life-to-learn

 

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707 ext. 5 or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

 

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

11 Smarter Strategies for Procrastinators Who’ve Tried Everything Else

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Do you ever find yourself mindlessly browsing social media, not knowing how exactly you ended up there? Or perhaps you have a serious deadline looming ahead. You promise to buckle down and get to work, but 30 minutes later, you inevitably find yourself knee-deep in pages of unrelated Wikipedia entries. Those are pretty sure signs that your procrastination might have gotten out of hand—to the point of occurring on autopilot.

This isn’t to say that you haven’t tried to break this bad habit—because you certainly have. If it seems like nothing has been working for you until now, then we have good news: These are resources that provide practical steps to starting and finishing your tasks on time.

  1. Procrastination is more of a mental block than it is anything else, so kick yourself into gear by giving yourself two minutes to start a task. You’d be surprised how much you can do after that. (James Clear)
  2. Sometimes, a task just seems too giant to tackle all at once. Practical steps to solving this would include breaking it up into small steps or creating a detailed schedule for yourself. (Lifehack)
  3. Not feeling motivated enough to make progress on your current project? Ask yourself this one magic question to change your perspective. (Inc)
  4. It could be that putting things off has never led to terrible consequences for you. In that case, you might be too comfortable(Greatist)
  5. Curious to understand why you actually keep procrastinating? Maybe figuring out your own motivations will help you undo that nasty habit. (Wait But Why)
  6. So, how are you supposed to overcome it? Sometimes strategizing isn’t just about your time management skills.
  7. Read up on these facts if you want to improve your workflow. (The Huffington Post)
  8. If you say “yes” too often or practice any other time-sucking habits, it probably makes sense that you’d be inclined to procrastinate every now and then. (Medium)
  9. The best way to trick yourself into getting things done and on time? Set realistic goals(Sid Savara)
  10. Also, make sure you’re rewarding yourself after a long day of work—otherwise you might not feel so encouraged to do it all next time. (Fast Company)
  11. Need some more strategies to find what works best? Here are three smart ways to stop procrastinating, once and for all. (The Daily Muse.)

https://www.themuse.com/advice/11-smarter-strategies-for-procrastinators-whove-tried-everything-else

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707 ext. 5 or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

 

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

5 Better Ways to Inspire Your Team

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A client of mine (we’ll call him Bill), was struggling with a team that lacked enthusiasm. In his words: “Energetically, we are flatter than a four-day-old soda.” His employees were falling behind—and they didn’t seem to care.

Bill was at his wit’s end trying to get them pumped up and passionate again. So, he scheduled a meeting where he planned to say that he’d better start seeing a change in attitude or he was going to “start making some changes in personnel.” But, Bill had a last-minute change of heart and canceled the meeting. He asked me to look into what might be actually going on for his team and advise him on what to do to inspire them to work up to their potential.

It’s not unusual for managers who want to motivate their employees to have at least considered Bill’s threatening approach. Because even people who hate their jobs find the prospect of losing it taps into their deepest fears and insecurities—and so, at least from the outside, it appears they’re working harder.

But, practically speaking, people who are afraid of being fired tend to either “quit in place” and shift their focus from delivering value to not getting fired, or leave for a better (and safer) job. In either case, word starts spreading that the company has a reputation for having a fear-based culture, and that’s not the kind of PR anyone wants.

So if threatening to fire your employees isn’t really a smart option, what can you do?

To begin, start by understanding the characteristics that motivate employees more than money. Daniel Pink author of Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Usrefers to three conditions that drive workplace performance. He calls them the “motivation trifecta.” They consist of:

“1. Autonomy–the desire to direct our own lives.
2. Mastery—the urge to get better and better at something that matters.
3. Purpose—the yearning to do what we do in the service of something larger than ourselves.”

Add to Pink’s list the characteristics of genuineness (sincerity) and measurement (having ways to objectively track people’s success) and you’ve got a good start. Here’s how you can convert all five of these characteristics into usable leadership tactics to inspire employees to give their best.

1. Autonomy

Through interviews, I discovered that some of the people on Bill’s team felt micromanaged and untrusted. They responded by taking less and less initiative, misinterpreting his occasional critiques of their work for disapproval. Bill had thought he was inspiring them with challenges when what he had really been doing was breaking down their confidence to think and act on their own.

Invite people to use their brains. People find work interesting when they can use their creativity, discretion, and judgment to get things done. Brainless work is mind-numbingly boring and saps our ability or willingness to think. When we are bored, time drags, and so do our spirits. So, give people assignments that are challenging enough to help them stretch—and be sure to recognize what they’re doing right.

When Bill allowed his employees to take ownership over their projects, and coupled that with more praise in addition to his critiques, he built their confidence and saw an increase in engagement.

2. Mastery

Some of the junior members of Bill’s team felt as if they were in a rut, endlessly doing the same, unchallenging tasks to support team goals—with no regard for developing their own skills. Bill started mixing in more challenging assignments with straight production work, as well as incorporating coaching .

Encourage and expect people to explore and develop their talents. When people are expected to continue their own self-development, they grow, and growth feels good. But learning to push ourselves to grow is a skill as well, so it’s important that managers encourage—and provide opportunities for—their reports to commit themselves to developing mastery in some of their job skills.

3. Purpose

Bill’s team had lost sight of why their group existed and why their work was important. So, in team meetings, Bill started to provide updates on what was happening in the larger organization that they might not have been aware of, connecting current company developments to the team’s work and contributions.

Call it meaning, or understanding the spiritual “why” of work: Purpose is seeing the connection between what we do and how our work makes a positive difference in the world. Even if there are days when work is tough or long, if people know they’re contributing to something greater, they’ll feel better and more motivated.

4. Genuineness

Bill’s frustration with his team resulted in him pulling away and emotionally detaching from them. As a result, they felt like he’d checked out. Bill didn’t need to threaten his employees (or give everyone a rah-rah pep talk), they were waiting for him to share what he was frustrated about—honestly and compassionately. He needed to ask for their help to change the team’s energy level and commitment to hard work instead of trying to figure out the problem by himself. Once he started practicing being vulnerable and truthful, his employees started to take more accountability for their own energy levels and focus. Their work and attitudes improved.

Genuineness is a combination of telling the truth and being vulnerable. People work for people, not just a paycheck, and when we trust and admire the the people we work for, we feel safer and more inspired to give our best.

So, spend less time thinking about what a boss might say, and be a leader by taking the time to sincerely connect with others.

5. Measurement

It took some effort to tie each person’s work to “hard” metrics; but once we did, everyone on Bill’s team felt relieved to know what success looked like. It was more than just winning Bill’s approval: They had goals they could target and meet.

People need to see how their hard work and sweat is substantively making a difference. If purpose comes from understanding the big picture company initiatives, measurement is data on how someone’s efforts are contributing to the team’s goals. Every job, function, and role needs to have metrics attached to it that allow people to compete against themselves to improve. People who are in jobs that also have objective, data-based measurements are less likely to waste time playing politics or trying to impress their bosses. They focus more energy on doing their jobs.

Using the “I’ll fire someone” card isn’t motivational, it’s cruel. But these tactics will inspire, energize, and increase engagement, which is what every leader should be trying to do. Don’t seek to instill fear: Aim to create an environment that allows your employees to be fearless and bring their best every day.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/5-better-ways-to-inspire-your-team-that-dont-include-firing-someone

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707 ext. 5 or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

 

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

7 Realistic Steps You Can Take to Stop Being So Stressed Out at Work

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Work stress. If you’re not careful, it can easily overtake your career and your life. Unfortunately for many Americans, pressure from the office can be difficult to avoid. A 2015 American Psychological Association study found that 60% of Americans suffer from work-related stress.

There are countless sources of anxiety, whether it comes from being overwhelmed by your workload or not being able to escape office politics. But don’t let it get the best of you. By simply taking a few small steps in how you approach your job, your career, and the stress that comes with it, it will all feel more manageable.

Here are seven things you can do to help alleviate your anxiousness:

1. Set Boundaries Around Your Inbox

When email first became popular, it was easy to limit how much time we spent with our inbox. You checked it while at your office computer and didn’t think about it again once you clocked out in the evening. But now we have access to our email 24/7, thanks to smartphones and other mobile devices. And whether you’re spending time with your family or running errands, as soon as you see that new email notification, you’re tempted to respond immediately.

While you might think answering emails right away makes you a better employee, the stress of always being available quickly takes its toll. Pick a few times a day when your attention is dedicated to your inbox. Having planned email breaks allows you to stay focused throughout the day on other tasks without your inbox getting out of control.

2. Avoid the Drama

How often does this happen in your workplace? You come into the office, ready to work and whistling a happy tune. You stop in the break room for a cup of coffee and immediately are ambushed by a co-worker: “You won’t believe what Bob did!” And so starts your spiral into the office drama black hole.

Unfortunately, such office antics are common. A 2015 CareerBuilder survey found that 44% of employees have witnessed a co-worker tattle on someone else, 32% have experienced workplace cliques, and 30% have heard rumors about co-workers. Don’t get caught up in that hassle. If you find colleagues are trying to drag you into the drama, politely tell them you have something important to work on and excuse yourself.

3. Take a Break

2015 Staples Business Advantage survey found that 28% of employees feel burnout at work because they never take any breaks during the day.

The longer you work without taking a mental hiatus, the lower the quality of your projects will be. It’ll make you more irritable and frustrated. Don’t let things progress that far. Instead, take a break for a few minutes whenever you feel yourself getting overworked. You can have a snack to fuel your brain, or get up and walk around to get the blood pumping. Anything is better than sitting in a cloud of stress and anxiety.

4. Surround Yourself With Positivity

We all have something that motivates us, whether it’s a picture of our family or a poster featuring our favorite inspirational quote. Surround yourself with your own unique brand of positivity to keep your mood up.

Consider what images, sounds, or color soothe you. Then, find decorations to hang on your office walls, or songs to play through your headphones so you can stay happy and centered throughout the day.

5. Chit-Chat With Co-workers

Human beings are social animals. Even the shy or introverted feel better when they know they aren’t alone. By taking the time to build relationships in the office, you create an escape from stress in the workplace.

Find a co-worker who has a similar interest as you. Even if you both only have Game of Thrones in common, it will give you an outlet to talk about something non-work related while connected with someone else. Just remember, small talk can be therapeutic, but the moment things turn toward gossip or office politics, it’s time to get out of the conversation.

6. Just Say No

It’s a skill you learned back in junior high, but have since forgotten: saying no. When you’re trying to prove yourself at work, it’s easy to develop the habit of saying yes to everything. Whether it’s the boss’ request to put in overtime or a co-worker’s plea for help on a project, you want people to see that you’re hardworking and willing to go the extra mile.

But, there are so many hours in the day. If you’re piling on too many extra responsibilities, it’ll leave you feeling exhausted or overextended. Instead of biting off more than you can chew, really consider if you have time to do something without it causing your own work, personal life, or sanity to suffer. If those things are at risk, you have the right to say “no.”

7. Take Note of Your Silver Linings

When you’re having a stressful day, or even week, it’s easy to get bogged down in all that’s going wrong. Face all that negativity head on by taking the time to find a silver lining. It can be something small, like the printer having fresh toner in it or a compliment from a co-worker. What’s important is thinking about that one good thing reminds you that things aren’t all bad.

Stress is a natural part of life. And in some cases, it can push you to be a better professional. However, when you allow pressure to overtake your life, it negatively affects your career. Lead a happier life by remembering these little steps to relieve unnecessary anxiety.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/7-realistic-steps-you-can-take-to-stop-being-so-stressed-out-at-work

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707 ext. 5 or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

 

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com

How to Pull Yourself Through a Rough Job Search When You Feel Like Giving Up

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Job searching is hard. It’s hard for most people—for me, for you, for your friend’s friend’s cousin. I can’t tell you that your experience is better or worse than anyone else’s, and I can’t tell you you’ll immediately end up exactly where you want to be. But I can tell you you’re not alone.

I asked several people, including some Musers, to be open and honest about what it was like for them to go through it. Because we’ve all had those teary, throw-a-plate-at-the-wall, yell-at-your-friends-and-family moments in which we’ve hated the process, the hiring manager, the company, or even ourselves. We’ve all worried that we won’t find a job we like, or one at all. But eventually, hopefully, all that stress and frustration leads to a real life career.

Here’s how to cope with some of the hardest moments in the job search, according to real people who went through it—and came out alive:

When You Feel Like You Lost Your Chance

In 2009, editor and writer Sara McCord found herself in the heat of the recession. Everyone was desperately competing for the same limited amount of jobs, and after leaving her dream job behind in DC to move to rural Pennsylvania with her boyfriend, she believed she’d peaked. At 23, she says, “I thought this is it, I’ve blown my career. My best years are behind me. I wondered if everyone who had given me advice on leaving to be with my boyfriend was right. I thought I’d never get a good job again.”

And understandably—who hasn’t once thought their career was over during a rut? Before I could even ask, McCord told me she had no regrets moving for her boyfriend—now husband: “If you put your relationship first, you put it first. Don’t make yourself the victim. You have to be honest with yourself and say, ‘I’m choosing to put XYZ first.’”

She eventually landed two part-time jobs at $9 an hour. At one point, when her husband lost his job, she took on a full-time gig photographing auto parts, a clear deviation from her original dream.

McCord knew there was one thing that was holding her back—her location: “Sometimes you’re just in the wrong place. I knew that I wasn’t going to find my dream job in the middle of nowhere Pennsylvania. I was going to have to wait to leave for that.”

McCord believes it’s important to check in with yourself and try to pinpoint if something is preventing you from getting from A to B: “It could be that you have to move, or it could be that your passion for the industry isn’t showing through in your interview. Then, you have to change whatever that thing is. And, really, you have to be honest with yourself if you’re not putting your job search first. At the time, I didn’t—I put my relationship first.”

This is something I came across a lot when talking with people—the idea of making your job search a full-time job in itself. Not forever, but if you want to find a position you truly love, you’re going to have to prioritize your search.

But with that being said, it’s OK to choose another full-time obligation for a bit—being a stay-at-home parent, caring for a loved one, traveling. Your dream job isn’t going anywhere, and it’ll be there waiting when you’re ready to jump back in.

Once McCord moved, she found a job she loved within a matter of months, and the experience of being under-employed is one of the things that eventually led her to pursue a career that would allow her to work remotely full-time.

When You Keep Trying and Getting Rejected

With a background in communications and PR, Gaby Rocha, an old colleague of one of my co-workers, had a real drive for fashion. But she wasn’t picky—she’d take any opportunity in the industry as a stepping stone toward her dream job. She described her experience in the same way a college student would talk about studying for finals: “I drank tons of coffee and wrote cover letters for every job. I literally tailored every single one of them. I studied for hours every night before an interview, I tried to look the best I possibly could. I probably applied to hundreds of jobs.”

She sounded like someone who’d been this strategic and organized her whole life, and when I asked her if she approached everything in this way, she responded “definitely not.” Basically, the job search turned her into someone who spent hours trying to make the perfect impression in everything she did.

Now, the job search shouldn’t turn you into someone you’re not—in fact, being “fake” or trying too hard can lead you down the wrong path for you. And it shouldn’t consume your life, either—but, it is a full-time commitment to find and land an amazing position. Rocha was willing to put in long hours to go after her ideal career—and when she found it, she could honestly say she truly earned it.

Talking with her reminded me of a former roommate, Kerry Houston, who I’d watched for the better part of a year submit tons of applications without any luck. So of course, I called her up (where she now works at an insurance company) to see if she remembers it as vividly as I do. She did.

“The worst part was not hearing anything, then when you did hear back, it was so many more interviews then you expected,” she told me. “You’d go in to the third round, and then they’d surprise you with a fourth. It’s not even the rejection that stings, it’s the waiting and waiting and then the rejection after waiting for so long.”

She described her feelings to me about it like a state of limbo—you’re always anxious because you don’t want to get your hopes up when you can easily get rejected the next week or month, but how can you not get excited if you’re making it so far? And it became a puzzle of negotiating her time—should I go and apply to 10 more companies when I’m waiting on other leads, and is that wasting my time if I end up getting the job anyways?

The answer? No, it’s not a waste to continue applying, but you have to go about it strategically. Sure, if you’re in the right mindset to submit more applications, then go for it. But when you send out applications rapidly and without a lot of thought and care, that’s when mistakes get made and your application is more likely to just get thrown in the trash (and that’ll be even more frustrating). In this case, you might want to pull back and take a break until you’re ready to start again.

To get over the stress of it, Houston said she’d run about five miles, four times a week at a fast sprint until she couldn’t do it anymore: “I called it my angry workout. When I was rejected, I’d do a longer run. I didn’t think I could do that much, but I had so much energy in me that I needed to get out. You don’t realize how much this stress builds up into adrenaline, even if it’s negative adrenaline.”

When You Get Led On and Let Down

Long before Richard Moy was a writer for The Muse, he was fired from a recruiting role, which then lead to a long year of job searching. During some of the worst times, he was led on to getting a job not once, but three times. When we talked about it, I felt myself getting annoyed on his behalf.

But that’s a typical reaction when you hear these kinds of stories because we’ve all been there. In a few instances, hiring managers told him they were writing up an acceptance letter for him—but then suddenly began sending him cold emails, telling him the company was going in a different direction: “They’d say ‘we didn’t realize you’re more expensive than we can afford,’ or, ‘we’re going to take a pass,’ or, ‘we think you’ll be bored here.’”

It was confusing. Here he was willing to accept just about any opportunity that would pay the bills, and apparently he was either too overqualified for the role, or he was too expensive—and yet, never once did he ask for a set salary. “A flat rejection would’ve been much easier,” he said. “But they kept leading me on. I felt worthless. I kept thinking, I don’t know what else I’m qualified to do, and no one wants to hire me for what I amqualified for. I just had to remind myself to stay on course.”

The thing is, looking back, staying on course was what was holding him back. The roles he’d applied for were in account management, but his real passion was for writing. When I asked him the turning point in his search, he said honestly, “I tried to force my way back into account management, but the world essentially was like, ‘no, go be a writer.’”

There will be times in your job search when you’re trying to make something happen, and someone else (a.k.a., a hiring manager) doesn’t think it’s a good fit. These are the frustrating, horrible moments that are out of your control. But there will also be moments when maybe you’re trying to force something that wasn’t meant to be. Rejection stings, but squeezing yourself into a career that isn’t your size? That’s inevitably more painful.

When You Think You’re Out of Options

Like McCord, Career Coach Melody Wilding started her career during the financial crisis. After graduating from Rutgers, and then getting her masters at Columbia, she was disillusioned by how hard it would be to find a job afterwards: “I kept thinking that this wasn’t what I was told in college. I had all the boxes ticked, why wasn’t this working?”

Going the traditional route failed her—sure, she received some responses and interviews, but none of her options were what she was looking for. “The thing I always advise my clients to do, and something I did as well during my process, was to make a list of your must-haves, your non-negotiables, and your deal-breakers,” she told me. So no matter how hard her search was, she never compromised the importance of having a short, flexible commute: “And this in itself cut down on the time I was wasting on jobs that didn’t work for me.”

But like most, she hit that wall when you start to run out of places to look and things to apply to: “I hit my low point where I became sick of being frustrated with myself and the process. I knew that something drastic needed to change. If nothing about the way I’m going about this isn’t working, what is?”

At the time, she was getting through grad school with internships and part-time jobs, anything she could do to get some valuable experience. She decided that instead of looking outward for a job, she’d turn to what she already had at her disposal. She built on her current jobs and activities and turned them into networking opportunities or freelance consulting gigs. She started attending events hosted by people she knew and put herself in social circles with individuals who could give her the advice and guidance she needed. Now she has a coaching practice on top of a full-time job as the Director of Social Innovation at ConsumerMedical.

“Instead of waiting for someone to choose me, I chose myself,” Wilding said. She believes this is the mindset any struggling job seeker should have: Take charge of every element of your career, even the parts you don’t think you can control. Because you have just as much power to break the cycle as a hiring manager does.

I’m a perfectionist. It helps when I’m cleaning my apartment or proofreading articles for typos, but it hurts when it comes to being rejected. So, during the worst parts of my job search—when I was going through three, four rounds of interviews, completing edits on 100-page manuscripts and churning out writing samples, getting led on and let down—I was really hard on myself.

I was angry at all those hiring managers, sure, but I hated my mediocrity more. I wished I was smarter, more experienced, better at interviews, cooler. Similarly, my roommate told me the biggest blow was when she’d have the perfect resume, but get rejected for a culture fit. Really, you start to doubt everything—your major, your life choices, your personality.

But I knew I wasn’t worthless. Even on my worst days, I reminded myself that I was a hard worker and a good person, and because of those traits and my passion, I’d eventually be recognized by (the right) hiring manager.

So, while this mindset didn’t lead to an immediate job, it did shift my perspective. Several of the people I talked with told me that you can’t take the job search personally, and they’re right: “There will always be someone who’s bigger, faster, stronger than you,” Houston told me. “But you have to remember there’s only so much you can do.”

So identify your best qualities and cling to those when the tides get rough. Because no rejection should ever convince you you’re not deserving of a job. You may get some great, useful feedback, and you may get some really harsh criticism, but you can’t let the search define who you are.

The first thing Wilding told me when I spoke to her was, “People always say ‘My story isn’t typical.’ But when it comes to the job search, it becomes the typical story. Because everyone’s been through something like it.”

And she was right—even when you think you had it rough, there’s a likely chance you’re not the first person, or the last.

I can tell you that everyone I talked to said they have never been happier where they are right now. They found their passion, they landed their dream job, and they get to do the things they love, every day.

It takes work, blood, sweat, and tears to get there—but when you do, looking back will never feel so good.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/how-to-pull-yourself-through-a-rough-job-search-when-you-feel-like-giving-up

ARE YOU IN NEED OF TOP TALENT NOW? Don’t have the time to spend nor available bandwidth to look for your company’s perfect match? Does this leave you with projects undone, unable to launch new initiatives or deliver desired output, let alone to grow your profits? Is your hiring process stalled and limping along with unfilled requisitions? Discover the ease and satisfaction of partnering with experts whose ONLY mission is to accomplish laser-focused search and to acquire top-tier skill on your behalf, each and every day! Contact us at 415-234-0707 ext. 5 or email at connect@superiansources.com Find out what a customized service SAVES you in TIME, MONEY and RESOURCES!

 

ARE YOU TODAY’S TOP TALENT LOOKING FOR A NEW ROLE? Do you want assurance that you are represented by the best and have opportunities open to you within exceptional workplaces? Have you heard that being presented by a boutique search firm is the edge you need to get in the door and have your opportunity to shine? Contact us at 415-234-0707 or email at connect@superiansources.com – http://www.SuperianSources.com