career coaching Archives | Life Coach Library

Use Your Professional Network for Job Success

Career & Business, Life Coach Library
professional networking

In uncertain times like these, it is wise to maximize the use of your social and professional network to aid in a  job search.  A recent survey conducted on LinkedIn reveals that more than 80% of people found their job using networking effectively.

Whether it is your father, who helps you set up a connection with a top-rated company in the city or your friend, who opens the door to land a high-profile job in his uncle’s company, the best jobs are seldom listed in the classifieds. Sometimes we have vast professional networks through social platforms like LinkedIn,  yet other times we enlist the resources of specialized recruiters or career coaches to help us get a great job.  

Whether you’re unemployed and seeking a job or looking to make a total career change, your social interactions can pay dividends in these endeavors. 

The value of professional networking

Most people are aware of the importance of having a strong network in a job search, but very few people know how to do it well.

As per a recent survey, 50% of respondents agreed that they heard about new jobs via their connections, whereas only 37% learned about the new opportunities from advertisements.  

The key is to develop multiple contacts – family, alumni, neighbors, friends, colleagues in your industry, and other sectors, and then build solid relationships with them.

Before the pandemic, attending in-person professional networking events was vital.  The value of human interaction has not changed; only the modality we use to create it.  Events are still taking place, but they’re online.  If there’s an upside to staying home, it should be more convenient to attend as they’re happening wherever you and your computer are 😉.  Try to participate in a variety of events whenever you have time. 

Find groups and events

professional networking

If you don’t belong to any groups or you don’t know where these events are, try an online search for organizations related to your industry.   Also, you can browse apps like Meetup to broaden both your social and professional networks.  A popular group among professionals in various industries and worth checking out is Toast Masters.  

In the future, when social distancing regulations relax some, there will (hopefully) be live events that you can attend.  If you happen to be the reserved type, a great way to break the ice is to volunteer to get involved.   Why not offer to sit at the registration table? Then you get the opportunity to meet and greet all the participants and may find smart ways to start a healthy conversation and bump up your communication skills.

Have a networking plan

Get the best return for your investment of time in attending networking events.  Have a specific goal in mind when you attend.   Are you there just to gather information and learn?  If so, write down a list of questions before hand so you can get them answered.   If your goal is to talk to people in a chosen industry, decide on the number of people you are setting out to connect.  Let’s say you decide on five.  Set your intention to get the names and contact information for a minimum of five people; it’s always okay to get more.   You could also set a goal to give your contact information to at least five different people too. It is amazing to learn that many other participants share common goals with you. Try engaging with them by sharing your business cards or email details.

Be prepared

 Plan your “elevator speech” in advance so that you can make a great first impression and get your point across quickly.  Time is money, and everyone is there for a reason.  When it comes to anything business related, best practice is concise and to the point. In short, don’t attend an event aimlessly, have a strategy in place from the start.

Real professional networking happens after the event

Too often, job seekers do not “work” their network proactively. They get names and numbers, but they don’t follow up, or they don’t follow up enough. These relationships take time and consistency.  It’s hard to reach out to someone you haven’t connected with for months or years.  Commit to making monthly contact.  Contact doesn’t have to be extensive; a short and sweet email or message on social media is enough.   If you don’t know what to say, offer your help to them. No one gets offended by a no-strings-attached shout out.  Reach out to all of your contacts about your job search.  Of course, if you need to be discreet about it, choose wisely; the point is to be polite yet assertive.   Your will impress your contacts with your energy, and you might be delighted to know how each one of them can give some valuable input.

Consider every social gathering an opportunity.  There certainly are fewer face-to-face gatherings now, so take advantage of online meetings and get-togethers. Opportunities can exist anywhere; it’s you who needs to stay active enough to identify them.

You may like: 100 Best Jobs
professional networking

Professional networking will help your boat to sail in the right direction.  Make sure you create an inventory of accomplishments and work history that you can share with relevant contacts when the opportunities present themselves.  

Stay aware, stay active, and position yourself strategically to land that dream job.  

If you’re looking for new ways to be proactive about your career, we invite you to talk to up to 3 experienced career coaches on us!   Our coaches are experts at helping people like you plan smart careers that are rewarding and fulfilling.  It’s free to register, and there is no obligation.  

I Hate My Job!

Why Career Coaching is a Must for Developers and Freelancers

Career & Business
developers need career coaches

This article was initially published by JetCake.

The benefits of career coaching have shown to be invaluable in almost every industry and are a must-have for developers.  Forbes, Inc., recently published statistics reporting that over 70% of those who receive coaching see improvements in their work performance, communication skills, relationships, and more often than not, recoup their investment.

Many of the worlds most famous CEOs, including Bill Gates and Steve Jobs,  have worked with career coaches.   They had the personal insight to know that having object feedback and accountability could be the difference between excellence and mediocrity.  They worked with coaches to develop communication skills, business concepts and clalrify their vision.  While coaching was once considered a luxury service for the elite, mainstream professionals frequently advance their careers and personal goals by working with a coach.    Today, professionals in every industry, including developers and programmers work with coaches to sharpen their resume,  gain feedback on their “blind spots”, advance in supporting skill sets, and clearly define their career trajectory.

Coaching takes many forms, from collaborating with trusted peers, having a mentor, and formally hiring a professional coach to get the most personalized attention and expertise one can.   In today’s uber busy and digital world, most of the coaching takes place right on your smartphone or tablet.

Being a successful freelancer takes so much more than being an excellent developer.   You need a strategy to market yourself and juggle the many tasks of going out on your own.  You might be a fantastic coder, but do you have all the skills needed to stand out?  If you’re ready to be proactive to stay ahead of the competion,  the impact of coaching is  invaluable. Here’s why every developer needs career coaching along the way. 

A Coach will help you develop your soft skills

When it comes to skills that employers seek most, tech and coding skills dominate LinkedIn’s 2019 list of skills sought after by employers’. That’s great news for developers.   Finding work will be relatively easy for you as your skillset is in high demand.   Scarce are developers who cannot get by.  However, do you want to get by, or do you want to be wildly successful?  Do you want to pick up a few gigs here and there, or do you want to thrive and have a constant stream of business?   What’s your vision for tomorrow, next year, and five years from now?    How are you going to make yourself stand out from the crowd?  

It doesn’t matter what industry you are in, having the right soft skills are in equal demand to honed professional talent.  This is what separates the good from the great.  Many developers and programmers focus on their hard skills but ignore this area of professional development.     

Read: Best Tips for Working From Home

According to Linkedin, the most in-demand soft skills are collaboration with team members and management, being able to think outside of the box, an eye for detail and accuracy, time management & organizational skills, and being adaptive and responsive. When a recruiter interviews dozens of candidates for one highly sought-after position, guess who stands out?   They one who delivers “all that AND the bag of chips.” In other words, the total package.

Certified Business and Career Coaches are experts at helping clients by preparing them for nuanced, real-world situations that will hone communication skills and develop them to measure up in multiple skill areas.  The jobs are out there and you can gain a competitive advantage in the job market by becoming a seasoned candidate with various skillsets. 

A Coach will save you time and money in developing your career

There’s no shortage of demand for developers which makes it very easy to let yourself rest in a comfort zone.  You might be lucky enough that opportunities seem to find you more than you actively seek them.   If that’s you, kudos, but don’t take it for granted.   Inevitably competition will grow, the “fit” will survive, but only the “fittest” will excel!   A career coach can help freelance developers, and tech professionals connect to more extensive networks, navigate career changes, win proposals on more significant projects, and discern what types of companies are most suited to your talents and preferences.    

A Coach will help you “future-proof” your skillset 

What worked yesterday doesn’t necessarily work today, and what works today may not work tomorrow.  The tech industry is continuously growing and changing, and if you want to stay in the race, your skills must too.   Easier said than done when  you’re focused on work projects of the day, so how can you be proactive and sharpen your skills to be ready for tomorrow?

“Coaches can use assessments to identify strengths and weaknesses, both in terms of personality and skillsets. They can also help job seekers understand how a skill can be applied in a different way to a new job,” writes TechRepublic

Business and Career Coaches stay current on what recruiters and industry leaders are looking for and can help you see where your skills might be outdated.  They will help you sharpen your presentation skills for the interview.    Some coaches will also take it a step further and place a developer in a job.

In short, the longevity of your professional status comes down to staying ahead of the curve in both technological and professional skills.    Savvy developers take advantage of coaching to stay in high demand!

Ready to be proactive in your career?  Try coaching RISK-FREE.

If You’re Not Achieving Your Goals, It’s Time To Look Inside

Career & Business, Personal Growth
achieve your goals

Can you believe there are only a few weeks left before the New Year is upon us?  Is your life today as you hoped it would be this time last year? Have you kept your New Year’s promises and made the changes you were so enthusiastic about?  Or, are you among the many who wanted change, wanted results,  had powerful intentions, but once again, you didn’t go the distance and achieve your goals?

The definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results,” Albert Einstein.  The truth is, if you want change, it’s you that needs to change.   No one is saying this is easy; old habits and old beliefs die hard.  The key to powerful, lasting change is having a clear vision and setting compelling goals.

Even though most people understand goal setting on a rational level, a whopping 80% of people never set clearly defined goals.  If that’s not bad enough, of the 20% who do set goals, nearly 70% of them never reach them.  Why not?  There are several possible reasons.   Sometimes there are outside circumstances that they genuinely have no control over. Still, the reality of it is the biggest obstacle to reaching the personal and professional growth we aspire to lives between your ears.  The typical culprits are lack of commitment, inactivity, or perhaps having too many goals. But even if these things are in perfect order, you could still miss the mark.

Here’s why:

  1. You need a change in attitude and to address self-limiting beliefs: Using the same thinking that got you “here” isn’t going to get out.  When you want something new on the outside, you need to create something new on the inside.  Most of our thought process runs in the unconscious, and that’s is where many damaging thoughts camp out.   Think of these limiting beliefs as pesky weeds which, until pulled out from their root, keep coming back and airing their ugly head. Typical examples are believing you’re someone you’re not; you’re not good enough, not smart enough, too young/too old, or some such disempowering label. Until that limiting belief is discovered and replaced with something positive and empowering, you are set up for failure.
  2. You fear failure, or even worse, you fear success: Some people are afraid they will fail, but the fear of success undermines even more people.  If they fail, they anticipate people labeling them a failure or a loser. If they succeed, they think people may be envious and treat them differently, perhaps negatively or that they can’t keep up the pace and will humiliate themselves.  As cliché as it may be, deep down, they might believe they’re unworthy of attaining the goal and, consciously or unconsciously sabotage themselves.   Either way, if you lack faith yourself and your potential, why would you even invest your energy and make the kind of non-negotiable commitment needed for success?   If you can’t give everything you’ve got, what can you expect to get back?
  3. You’re not being true to yourself, and there is a conflict with your core values and/or life purpose. Are you doing what you are passionate about or what you think you should be doing?   Are you trying to please yourself or someone else?   Get clear about your core values and life purpose because they will serve as a compass, pointing out what it means to be true to yourself.  If you are living in conflict with your core values, you create stress, like running against the wind or trying to swim against the current.  It leads to frustration and disenchantment.  When you live “on purpose,” you will be amazed how easily things can fall into place.  You still have to work hard and very hard at that.  However, your motivation will be stronger and last longer because you are doing what you love to do, what you are good at, and accomplishing what is important to you. You are making a difference in the world.   These are the key ingredients to finding success, joy, and fulfillment. 

The most common characteristic amongst successful people is the ability to take 100% responsibility for their lives, including their achievements, the results they produce, the quality of their relationships, their health and well- being, their income, and everything else. They are goal-oriented and take action.  When stuck, they don’t blame people, places or circumstances, they reassess and readjust and keep going.  Even if things do not go as they hoped, they do not feed themselves the lies ‘I am a loser, I am a failure, or I can’t achieve anything.’ They redefine their failure as a success by looking at the reality of the situation, learning from it, and pressing on. 

While no one can create your success but you, you’d don’t have to do it alone.  If you’re ready to go all the way and move past your fears, consider reaching out to a professional coach. Overcoming the limiting beliefs that interfere with success is what life coaches specialize in. 

Reach out and receive a free consultation to experience the impact a coach can have!

Written and submitted by:

Robbie Carlson

Professional Life and Leadership Coach

“Helping women leaders create successful careers and extraordinary lives.”

www.robbiekcarlson.com

6 Steps to Achieving Financial Security

ENGAGE AND RETAIN YOUR EMPLOYEES

Career & Business
keep employees engaged

Organizations today need to rely on the commitment and engagement of their employees in order to thrive.

Sadly, only 15% of employees worldwide are engaged in their jobs according to a Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace report. Equally concerning is the high cost of turnover. In a 2018 Retention Report: Truth and Trends in Turnover revealed that U.S. employers were expected to pay $600 billion in turnover costs in 2018 predicted to increase to $680 billion by 2020 according to the study. (Tarallo, M., 2018).

If this trend continues, organizations will struggle to survive. With the way our economy is today, more jobs available than people to fill them, organizations will find themselves struggling if they cannot retain their employees. I wholeheartedly believe that engaged employees are a company’s most important asset. Leaders need to make employee engagement a core responsibility knowing that it is an investment in the organization.

Here are five tips to consider for engaging and retaining your employees:

1. Be the leader employees want to follow.

Numerous studies show that the number one reason employees leave their jobs is because of their supervisor. Leadership matters. We need to continually invest in our own professional development so we can be the leader our employees want to follow. We all have areas for improvement.

Employees often complain that their supervisor does not listen to them. Effective communication is a critical leadership skill and this doesn’t just equate to speaking. Active listening is incredibly important. Take time from your busy schedule to listen to your employees. They want to be heard and know that their thoughts and opinions matter. To keep employees engaged, leaders must show their employees they can be trusted. They must be approachable and show their employees that they genuinely care about them.

2. Start early. Employee engagement and retention starts upon hire.

Retention efforts should start on day one. Create a robust onboarding and training process so new employees can acquire the necessary knowledge, skills and behaviors to become engaged members of the team. Effective onboarding also reduces employee ramp-up time. New employees should know exactly what is expected of them, and have the appropriate resources and training to help them be successful. Consider assigning a new employee a buddy, someone who can show them around, introduce them to others and make them feel welcome.

3. Mentor and coach your employees.

Don’t wait for the annual performance review to provide performance feedback to your employees. Meet often especially in the first year. Take the opportunity to coach for performance improvement. Nurture the strengths and talents of your staff. Help your employees create a career plan and give them opportunities to grow. Make it part of your mission as a leader to help your employees attain their career aspirations. If career advancement is part of their career plan, mentor and prepare them for the next level. When appropriate, give your employees new experiences by having them accompany you to meetings and appointments.

Mentoring builds loyalty, helps employees feel valued, and is engaging.

4. Recognize accomplishments.

Everyone needs to feel valued. Recognizing accomplishments and showing appreciation goes a long way towards driving employee engagement. Employees will want to stay with you for the long haul. Recognition also helps reinforce what you’d like to see the employee do more of. Recognizing accomplishments could be a simple thank you or a nice handwritten note. It’s also important to know what kind of recognition means the most to your employees. Some may like to be publicly recognized while others may simply prefer one-on-one recognition.

5. Inspire, demonstrate your passion and commitment.

Be able to communicate a powerful vision for the company. Show your commitment and enthusiasm for the mission and vision of the company. What really matters is when leaders can create enthusiasm and empower their employees. Your enthusiasm can be contagious!

Are you ready to advance with a coach?

Life Coach Library was designed by coaches who have been clients and know how to work with busy professionals. Now you can conveniently experience the impact a coach can make and without risk. Simply register, fill out a questionnaire so that our coaches can get a snapshot of you and your goals, and receive up to three coaching consultations from certified coaches who specialize in your area of need.

Submitted by Robbie K. Carlson – Life & Leadership Coach http://robbiekcarlson.com/

Save Filter
×
Menu
Account