Here’s How to Make Sure You Don’t Miss Out On Your Next Big Career Opportunity

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Maybe you have a five-year plan, maybe you’re more the vision boarding type, or maybe there’s just a specific promotion you’re gunning for, but no matter how you think about the future of your career, you probably do have some idea of where you’re headed next.

And that’s great! Planning is an important step in making sure you continue to move forward.

But sometimes, fantastic opportunities aren’t located on that plan you so clearly laid out. And by sticking to your long-term vision so closely, you don’t give yourself the chance to even stumble across them.

So, how can you toe the line between staying focused and driven on the path you’re on while still remaining open to new routes that may pop up? Here are four ideas.

1. Clear Your Head Often

To keep an open mind, it helps to start with a clear one—uncluttered from the demands of both work and life. It’s hard to spot new opportunities when you’re preoccupied by an upcoming client deadline, your boss’s request for more data, and your significant other’s birthday party complications.

So make it part of your weekly schedule to do what you need to do to clear your head—whether that’s by exercising, meditating, writing in a journal, or really anything that makes you feel less stressed and ready to be in the moment. Your method doesn’t matter as much as your commitment to doing it. Not only is this good for your heath in general, it’ll make the necessary mental space for you to mull over new possibilities.

2. Get Outside Your Network

You likely already have a solid network in your current industry—and you should definitely continue to cultivate those relationships for all the obvious reasons.

But you should also develop relationships with interesting people outside your inner circle. Start with people in other departments at your company (you already have something in common!)—they could help you see interesting growth paths or potential projects at work.

Attend an event in a totally different industry that you’ve always been curious about. Sure, it might feel awkward to be, say, the only non-salesperson at an event about sales tactics, but if you’re genuinely curious and open, you may end up having really great conversations with people who are happy to talk about their own careers with you.

When you’re speaking with these people, go deep. Remember: You’re not there to find a new job, these conversations should be about different industries, upcoming projects, big ideas, and anything else you don’t typically discuss in your own circles.

While it may not be obvious how these people can help out your career, they may end up sharing interesting opportunities with you down the road. Or, at the very least, sparking new ideas for you to think about.

3. Say Yes More

We’re not suggesting that you say yes to every little thing that comes across your plate. That’s asking to get stressed out—and fast. (Not to mention, it’ll defeat any head clearing you do.) But start saying yes to those little ideas that come into your head and spark a little excitement in you—again, even if they don’t make complete sense with your current plan.

Maybe “saying yes” is asking your boss if you can learn a little more about a position that recently opened up in your department that you’re not familiar with. Maybe it’s launching a book club at your office to turn your love of reading into something a little more. Maybe it’s finally taking that class to learn a random skill that has nothing to do with your career but you’ve always felt drawn to. Maybe it’s offering to help a friend with a side project she’s working on because you care about the mission and like working with her.

Whatever it is, look at your schedule and see if there’s a way you can say yes more, even if it’s only in a small way. Doing this might just lead to a fun hobby or side project—but it could also lead to an opportunity you wouldn’t have ever imagined.

4. Check In With Yourself—and Others

Finally, make the commitment to check in with yourself on a regular basis, to evaluate the work you’re doing, as well as the work that you could be doing. Are you still happy? Challenged? Fulfilled? Are there new projects you’d like to take on? New skills you’d like to learn? New people you’d like to meet?

As you feel comfortable, it can be valuable to bring friends, mentors, or even your boss if you’re close into this conversation. Talk to them about what you’re learning about yourself through these exercises. Bring up any tension you’re concerned about between these new insights and your original plan. Talk about your multiple passions and how you’re having trouble bringing them all together into one cohesive career path. Their outside perspectives may help you find ways to bring everything together in a way that you’re unable to see.

Ultimately, this all comes back to staying curious in your career. Yes, you can have a plan and be driven toward working on that, but make sure you stop sometimes to look around you and see what else is out there. The options may surprise you.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/heres-how-to-make-sure-you-dont-miss-out-on-your-next-big-career-opportunity

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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14 Totally Avoidable Mistakes Unemployed People Make During the Job Search

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Looking for a job can be a challenging process, regardless of whether you’re currently employed or are out of work. Of course, the advantage of being in the latter group is a little thing called time. Instead of trying to figure out how to sift through postings without your boss finding out or devoting nights and weekends to tailoring cover letters and resumes, you have the luxury of throwing yourself 100% into your search.

The downside to this is letting feelings of insecurity and anxiety over being unemployed take over. You might feel frustrated that you haven’t found a job yet. Heck, you might be genuinely worried about how you’re going to pay your bills next month, or you might be feeling like no one will ever want to hire you because if no one has by now, it’s never going to happen.

In spite of any negative feelings you may be harboring over your job status, you need to set them aside if you want to present yourself as a viable candidate. 14 career coaches weigh in on the job search mistakes unemployed people make.

1. Lacking Focus

If you’re unemployed, and have been for a long time, it’s common and totally understandable to feel stuck, frustrated, and a bit desperate. But, the one thing to keep in mind is that employers hire to fill needs. They may need to increase profits, balance a team’s workload, expand a department, etc. Stay laser focused on meeting the needs of your prospective employers and you’ll be on the road to a new position in no time.

Neely Raffellini

2. Giving Off Bad Energy

What attitude are you bringing to the job search? How are you networking and communicating your desire for work? I’ve noticed that in the past when I’ve come from a place of desperation others could sense it, and it definitely didn’t do me any favors. Approach each and every connection from a place of service—even if you’re feeling despair. Ask yourself how you can be of service, and your energy will automatically attract rather than detract.

Joyel Crawford

3. Projecting Laziness

When you’re unemployed, your job is finding a job. It’s legitimate in its own way. I encourage people to use the same dedication and discipline they demonstrate while employed. Make a plan, develop a schedule, create a routine each day, and set goals for yourself. Treat your days like workdays—keep up your good routines and be productive.

Bruce Eckfeldt

4. Exhibiting Low Self-Esteem

Walking around with an ‘I’m not worthy’ mindset is a huge problem and not one that’s likely to escape the notice of hiring managers. When networking and interviewing, nothing is more important than demonstrating your strengths and possessing confidence—job or no job. If you haven’t done the personal work to get there (affirmations, gratitude journal, channeling mentors), it’s going to be difficult. So, do the work. You’ll never convince someone you’re hireable if you don’t believe it yourself.

Annie Nogg

5. Thinking Quantity Over Quality

When you’re an unemployed job seeker, you’re going to want to do everything you possibly can to get a job, which can lead to emphasizing quantity versus quality. Instead of thinking about how many jobs you applied to or how many cover letters you wrote this week, focus on submitting top quality materials for roles you’re truly interested in. Attempt to form connections with people at those companies.

Al Dea

6. Standing Still

Don’t talk yourself out of applying for a role you really want just because the competition scares you or you’re not 100% qualified. If you convince yourself you’re not good enough for a position or think no one would ever consider you, you miss out on a lot of potential opportunities. Be willing to put yourself out there and risk the rejection that you’re likely to experience as a result of the job-search process.

Kelly Poulson

7. Oversharing

While confiding in professional contact about your job search struggles can be cathartic, more often than not you’ll end up coming across as desperate. This isn’t a good look and won’t position you as someone who’s capable and qualified. Instead of lamenting your situation, think of how you can show your value to your network. Save your personal frustrations for a close friend or family member.

Rajiv Nathan

8. Ignoring Grief

Many people don’t realize the emotional toll unemployment can take. Any significant loss—including being laid off or fired—can involve grief. Though you may go through emotional ups-and-downs throughout unemployment, it’s important to realize that mourning is a natural process. Learning the five stages of grief is a great place to start to lift yourself out of an unemployment rut. It’ll help you understand your thought processes and devise action steps to move through it more quickly.

Melody Wilding

9. Losing Sight of the Big Picture

If you’re unemployed, you may think you have no leverage and have to take what you can get, but this is incorrect. Focus on your totality of experiences and practice speaking broadly about your strengths and skills in a way that brings your entire background into the conversation so you’re not focusing solely on your most recent position. Do you have a side hustle that you’ve been building? Have you done meaningful volunteer work that’s helped you build out a new skill set? Taken any continuing education or online class to gain fresh knowledge? Bring these into the discussion.

Alexandra Dickinson

10. Letting Past Failure Rule

The job search is fraught with rejection, but the challenge is in not letting those failures influence your ability to succeed. In Michael Lewis’ bestseller on behavioral economics, <em>The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds</em>, we learn that judgment is greatly influenced by our last impression, our last experience. Apply that insight to the job search, consciously letting go of each no so you can keep moving forward. Failing is a part of life and something to learn from, not something to hold you down.

Theresa Merrill

11. Applying for the Wrong Jobs

When funds are running low, and panic starts to set in, leading you to apply for stuff that’s way beneath what you’re actually qualified to do—with a resume that indicates that you’re not working—you’re going to raise eyebrows. Hiring managers may assume that you’re up to exactly what you’re up to: scrambling to land anything you can get. You’re wasting your time and theirs applying for roles that would’ve been a good fit 10 years ago.

Jenny Foss

12. Not Optimizing Your Best Hours

I’m not of the mindset that looking for a job is a full-time job. I recommend spending four solid hours a day of concentrated, strategic effort in your search—researching positions, writing cover letters, and setting up interviews. Choose hours when you’re at your most energetic and enthusiastic. Spend other time on indirect job-search actions including self-care, hobbies, and networking in all its many forms.

Kristina Leonardi

13. Listening to People

Despite their best intentions, friends and family can offer input that can lead you to feel overwhelmed and question your path. Because their advice is typically based on their values and experience, they may be unaware of your actual goals and aspirations. While they mean well, they may be getting in your head in a way that’s hindering—not helping you.

Tara Padua

14. Letting It Break You

Finding a job can be long and draining. It takes a lot of courage to continually put yourself out there, write a strong cover letter, update your resume, and send it off to someone in the hopes that they’ll contact you. And when you’re unemployed, it’s really easy to become demoralized every time you don’t hear back from someone, each time you receive a rejection. Keep perspective: This is temporary. Believe that your hard work will eventually lead to an opportunity.

Angela Smith

https://www.themuse.com/advice/14-totally-avoidable-mistakes-unemployed-people-make-during-the-job-search

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 Make Sure Your Bad Day Doesn’t Turn You Into the Office Buzzkill

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You spilled your coffee, got stuck in traffic, and put a snag in your favorite sweater. By the time you sit down at your desk, you’re already in a pretty foul mood.

So, when your manager stops by to ask you to make some major changes to that report you spent hours working on, you finally tip over that ledge and spiral into a full-blown emotional funk. Your jaw is clenched, your fists are balled up, and you have a scowl permanently parked on your face.

What’s the bad part about this (other than the fact that you’re having a plain ol’ crappy time)? Well, a toxic attitude can spread faster than that juicy office gossip about Susan’s long, closed-door meeting with her boss.

Yes, bad days are contagious—particularly in a working environment. And, if you don’t nip your infectious mood in the bud, it’ll be that much harder for you to snap out of it when everyone else around you is feeling grumpy.

You need to get your attitude in check—and fast.

Here’s how:

1. Avoid Venting

It’s human nature—when you’re having a terrible time in the office, you’re eager to air your grievances to the first person who will listen. You want to grab your closest co-worker and take a quick break by for a little whisper session about how awful things are going.

This might be comforting to you, but it’s bound to spread some negativity throughout your office. Before you know it, that close colleague of yours is just as irritated or worked up as you—and the domino effect continues.

While there are some productive ways to vent in the office every now and then, sometimes it’s better to shut your mouth and keep those complaints to your self. As Muse Senior Editor, Stacey Lastoe says in her piece on keeping a grumpy demeanor under wraps, “The key to keeping your unpleasant mood in check during the workday is to say as little as possible. By staying quiet, you avoid the risk of opening your mouth and saying the first snarky thing that comes to mind.”

If you absolutely need to get something off your chest? Consider cranking out an email that contains all of your thoughts and frustrations—but never actually hit “send.” That way, you can get all of that negativity out of your own brain (meaning you can take a deep breath and “move on”), without running the risk of spreading those bad vibes around your office.

2. Take a Break

The downward spiral of negativity moves quickly. A bad meeting turns into a bad morning, which turns into a bad day—which can easily turn into an entire bad week (should I keep going?).

Sometimes, you need to do something to throw a wrench into this cycle and nip your cranky attitude in the bud so that you can come back to the office feeling like the positive and eager professional that you are (rather than dragging both yourself and your co-workers down).

One of the best ways to do just that is to get up and take a break. Go outside and take a walk, run an errand, or head out for a quick cup of coffee. Do anything that will get you away from your desk and give you a chance to press the reset button.

Research shows that attempting to continue to stay focused on the task at hand will only lead to increased fatigue and an even worse mood—and that won’t do anybody any favors (including you). So, stand up and give yourself a pause to get your attitude adjusted. In the end, that’s much better than trying to power through.

3. Perform a Random Act of Kindness

No matter how bad things are going, you know that you don’t want your crabby mood to negatively impact everybody else you work with. And, one of the very best ways to give the vibe around the office a boost (and your own outlook in the process) is to perform a random act of kindness. In fact, research shows that these small niceties actually raise your dopamine levels—making you feel way better in the process.

Leave a pack of candy from the vending machine on your colleague’s desk, or pick up some coffee for the rest of your team. Or, take on the dirty work and clean out the breakroom microwave for everybody.

Doing something nice and unexpected will flip the script on your sour attitude and spread some enthusiasm and positivity around the office. Plus, it’ll not only put a smile on your co-worker’s faces, but likely on yours, too.

4. Fake it ’Til You Make it

You’ve probably heard this expression before, and it still rings true. Don’t let your bad mood rule your entire day and your interactions in the office. Instead, put on your most convincing happy face and push through.

Is appearing upbeat and excited easy when you’re feeling down? Definitely not. But, it’s still better than sending the outlook of your entire office (and your reputation) into a nosedive with one snide comment or pesky complaint.

Even better? Science says that smiling (even when you don’t feel like it) can actually help to improve your mood. So, it might be just what you need to turn that awful day of yours around.

Bad days come after the best of us. And, while having one every now and then is totally normal, it’s better for you and everybody else if you don’t let it spread like wildfire among your colleagues. Because at the end of this no-good, rotten day, that’ll only make you feel worse.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/how-to-make-sure-your-bad-day-doesnt-turn-you-into-the-office-buzzkill

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

 

4 Questions Smart People Ask About Side Gigs (So They Don’t Lose Their Jobs)

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Even though you love your day job, you’ve got some big ideas for a new passion project. Or maybe you’re saving for a big trip and looking for cash flow outside of your career. Or perhaps you’re trying to monetize a hobby you love.

Whatever the case, side gigs—no matter what form they take—are becoming a smart move both financially and career-wise. And the smartest people know there are a few questions you should ask before diving in if you’re currently employed full-time.

1. Are Side Hustles Even Allowed at My Company?

In an economy where 39% of working Millennials have started their own gig on the side, smart employers understand that bans on outside projects can stifle creativity, push employees underground, and create a culture of distrust. They also know they stand to lose out on really exceptional and industrious people. After all, it takes some serious drive to add more work to your plate when you could spend your evenings lounging around instead.

But before moving ahead, you need to scan through the fine print on your contract and the company handbook to make sure you’re in the clear legally. Read carefully to make sure there isn’t a potential conflict of interest (more on this below!) or specific policies such as a non-compete clause. Look specifically for sections that discuss how long the non-compete applies, what type of work you are prohibited from doing, and whether or not the non-compete is only regional.

If you don’t, you could be setting yourself up to get fired or worse, sued. Unless your side hustle is in the exact same line of work as your day job, it probably won’t be an issue—but better to be safe than sorry.

2. How Do I Know if There’s a Conflict of Interest?

The simple, no-mess way to avoid any potential conflicts of interest is to set up a meeting with human resources or your corporate legal rep.

There’s no need to go into specifics about the clients, the size of your projects, or what they are paying you. But a quick rundown of the basic information will help you avoid some of the major pitfalls, such as poaching your company’s clients, unintentionally stealing intellectual property, or using their resources on your side gig (yes, including that work-issued laptop that you bring home to watch Netflix on).

3. Do I Have to Tell My Boss? My Company? HR?

If what you plan to do is allowed by your company, then there’s no reason why you necessarily need to disclose your side hustle. But although it isn’t legally necessary to tell folks, it’s more than likely—with social media—that one of your co-workers will find out.

If your office is one where a Facebook discovery could lead to an awkward conversation with your boss, save yourself in advance by just giving them a heads-up that you’re working on something outside the office.

Use this opportunity to explain how the skills you stand to gain from your side hustle will benefit your employer, your project team, or the company down the road. Pitching your side project this way will temper your supervisor’s fears that you’ve become disenchanted with your job and make him or her focus on the value of your entrepreneurial spirit. Who knows, they might even have some helpful advice or potential connections.

This will not only ease any anxiety you might be feeling about doing something sneaky, but will also prevent your supervisor from feeling that you were dishonest or shady with them. The last thing you want is them blaming a recent mistake on the fact you’re not focused.

4. How Can I Make it Clear to My Manager That I’m Still 100% Into My Current Job?

Depending on who you’re talking with, the term “side hustle” can come off as a dirty word. While rare nowadays, there are still those who think an employee won’t be able to give his or her best effort at a nine-to-five job while also focusing on a part-time business venture. That by having a side project, you are in some ways cheating on your employer.

The best way to put your boss at ease is to have that initial “Here’s what I’m working on conversation” and assure them of your commitment. Then, set strict boundaries for yourself and stick to them. Keep in mind that after this discussion, your performance at work might be viewed under a microscope, so you need to be sure you’re on time for meetings, hitting your deadlines, and just generally firing on all cylinders.

And know this: No supervisor, no matter how open he or she is to your project—will be pleased if they catch you working on your own business on their dime, especially if you’re not hitting all your goals at work.

It can be exhausting to put in a full day and then turn around to work on your side hustle all night. But because it can be such a rewarding way to gain valuable skills, supplement your income, or make you feel great, you should try to make it happen. Because if you do all of the above—checking to make sure you’re not doing anything unethical or illegal and talking to your boss—there’s nothing really stopping you.

https://www.themuse.com/advice/4-questions-smart-people-ask-about-side-gigs-so-they-dont-lose-their-jobs

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