How a Mentor Can Accelerate Your Career

How a Mentor Can Accelerate Your Career

At the beginning of your professional career, everything in front of you can appear daunting. During these formative years, you are deciding what you want to do, who you want to be and where you are going to start. Many of us change our minds about our future career before we hit the workforce, and then there are, of course, job changes throughout your career.

The overwhelming stress of this phase can be alleviated by finding a mentor to give you guidance and help you achieve your career goals. Learning from a successful mentor in your field of interest can elevate both your professional capabilities and confidence better than any Internet search results or well-intentioned parental advice.

Read on to learn more about the benefits of having a mentor in this competitive job market, as well as tips on how to find a mentor…

Companies won’t even look at resumes of the long-term unemployed

Companies won’t even look at resumes of the long-term unemployed

“Here’s one big reason why America’s unemployment crisis may be here to stay. Thanks to the lasting effects of the recession, there are currently 4.7 million workers who have been out of work for at least 27 weeks. And new research suggests that employers will almost never consider hiring them.” 

Click the title to read the full story but my takeaway here is that, like in London, you need to MIND THE GAPS!  Fill the holes in your resume through volunteer opportunities, temp or part-time work. It may not be preferable, but it keeps your skills sharp, your network growing, and your ambitions evident as you continue the pursuit of happiness. 

Accelerate Your Learning

Accelerate Your LearningYou have just entered into a new role and feel a need to add value NOW.  Before you put the cart ahead of the horse, stop doing and start listening.  This step will ensure that you move forward with an the information you need to make appropriate contributions. Figure out what you need to know about your new organization and then learn it as rapidly as you can.

Plan to learn.  This means figuring out in advance what the important questions are so that you can best answer them.

Identify your personal “learning disabilities”, i.e., the potentially crippling internal blocks to your own learning and development.  Be in touch with your strengths and weaknesses.  Be self aware.

Displaying a genuine ability to listen often translates into increased credibility and influence.

Learn to identify actionable insights: knowledge that enables you to make better decisions earlier.

Make a learning agenda to identify what you want to learn and a learning plan to establish how you intend to learn it.

-Paraphrased from The First 90 Days but Michael Watkins

What if Your Boss Tracked Your Sleep, Diet, and Exercise?

What if Your Boss Tracked Your Sleep, Diet, and Exercise?

Excerpt from full text:

““Sirens are going off in my head. There’s certainly the potential for abuse,” says Beth Givens, the director of Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, a not-for-profit privacy advocate based in San Diego, explaining that employees shouldn’t use such a system unless there’s an “iron-clad” privacy statement that prevents the company from making HR decisions based on the health data.”

If nothing else, Citizen’s decision to explore health metrics to drive productivity and engagement demonstrates the company’s commitment to health and wellness, as well as data-driven decision making.  Currently only 10% (8 of 80 employees) have volunteered as guinea pigs for this program, still in its admittedly nascent stages.  Yet, this novel health tracking offering could reap great returns to the employer.  After all, healthy people are happy people and happy people get things done, right?

What do you think: do the potential benefits to the employer outweigh the legal headaches and privacy issues? 



Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

I want to start sharing books that have been helpful to me both personally and professionally. Let’s start with my favorite coffee table read: “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff” by Dr. Richard Carlson. This 1990s best-seller is part psychobabble, part Zen, part common sense, and yet it contains countless vignettes to help keep you mentally and physically prepared for whatever life has to throw your way. This is a book I read over and over again to remind myself that “hey, it’s all small stuff!”