Posts tagged: career branding

Happily Employed 101: Decide Who You Are BEFORE Deciding What You’ll DO!

The Career Engineer

As of June 2014, approximately 9.5 million Americans are unemployed in the United States. As a re-careering employee you may be wondering, “In this 21st century labor market, is it possible to have the “American Dream” and be successful in the workforce and in life?” Absolutely! The proof is in the person. Look at Oprah, Bill Gates, Tyler Perry, and Sam Walton. They’ve found the way. In a nutshell, they focused on their potential, not the economic indicators.  Successful people discovered who they were “BEFORE” they decided what they would do. It’s deeper than a job with these folks. It’s about delivering their passion, purpose, personality, and potential. I’m convinced that the individuals listed above no longer have to go to work everyday. They work hard, but their careers have become another dimension of their personalities pushed beyond the “average” functioning levels. Successful people consistently strive to produce at 100 percent utilizing a true blend of purpose and occupation.

 

What about the rest of us, can we attain that level of synergy in our professional career and life?   Absolutely. However, understand that success does not come without cost. Our cost, we must make a personal commitment to explore ourselves at deeper levels than we ever imagined. The actual price is the authentic desire to uncover our wants and needs, in order to let go of old habits, and gain new experiences.   I challenge you, find out who you are “before” deciding what you’ll do.  The next seven steps to self-discovery that follow will help you to discover who you are in work and in life. Remember, it’s deeper than a job…it’s about discovering “you.”

  1. Accept Who You Are: The ability to be comfortable in your own skin, and to find your  own niche, is a must for today’s competitive world. There is no one on this planet just like you. Learn to embrace and accept your originality, your body composition, the hue of your complexion, your voice, your essence, and your professional style. Once you have accepted “who you are,” you can begin to share “what you bring” to the workforce, relationships, and the world. Your unique “brand”is a selling point that you must deliver in all of your networking experiences. Be the pacesetter who drives class and style. Set your standards and leave the crowd behind.  TCE Power Statement: Failure Happens When You Try To Become Something You Are Not.
  1. Tap into Your Gifts and Talents:   If you don’t like something, you won’t do it very well. In order to find your “fit” with a particular employer, you need to explore your interests, desires, natural gifts and acquired talents. Consider the following questions and write your responses. In what areas of your life have you received compliments with minimal efforts? What do you enjoy? What relaxes you? What would you do for free? How do you feel when you are doing “that” activity? Do you “dream out loud?” How would you describe your ideal environment? If all of your debts were paid, and you could do anything in the world, what would it be?  Your answers may open the door for you to discover the best fit for your personality in the work environment. For instance, I enjoy helping people discover themselves. I need flexible, relaxed environments, open spaces, vibrant colors, limited supervision, and the ability to “go with it.” I would not be successful working in the Patent and Copyright Office for the Federal Government (even if it’s a GS-12 position), there are too many limitations. The result of an improper fit is friction, in which case, poor performance and/or termination would likely follow. TCE Power Statement: In The World of Success or Failure, Your Fit Makes The Difference.
  1. Discover Your Strengths/Know Your Limitations: You can’t sell what you don’t know. Let’s uncover your power. Consider the following examples to start your strength building process.  Are you comfortable speaking in front of groups, keen with numbers, academically solid, business savvy, or an excellent leader? Don’t discount your soft skills (compassion, drive, patience), combine them with the hard skills listed above. To determine your limitations, use the same techniques as above to find areas that are underdeveloped and need strengthening.   Once you have completed the above task, sell your strengths and minimize your limitations. Example: Strength: communication skills, Limitation: rapid speech (by product of a Yankee upbringing). Plan – be aware and conscious of speech rate while delivering my messages. No one will know, employer or otherwise, the areas of your life that need work, unless you decide to tell them. TCE Power statement: The Road To Success Is Always Under Construction.  
  1. Declare What You Don’t Want to Do: Fact:I don’t like okra. Therefore, I don’t eat okra, I enjoy collards instead. If you don’t like something, stop pursuing it. First step, declare 3 areas that you have “zero” interest in working.Let your flood gates open and list the industries, environments, job titles for which you have “zero” interest. Next step, do not apply for an opportunity in any of the areas you have listed in this exploration. If you don’t want to work nights and weekends, then don’t pursue the service industry (management or otherwise). If you have a more circular personality and need freedom and energy from others, don’t look for opportunities in a linear environment where order and routine is the norm. Your declarations will release you to pursue those areas where your interest, gifts, talents, and strengths can shine. Retention is more important than recruitment. TCE Power statement: When You Love What You Do, You Will Never be Forced to Go to Work Everyday.
  1. Acknowledge Your Power Source: In our academic pursuits, relationships, and work lives most of our actions are determined by some form of motivation.   In other words, “if I do this…what’s in it for me?”   Find the origins of your motivation, consider these questions. Are you internally or externally focused? What motivates your successes? What compels you to select particular programs? What drives you? What fuels your passion? What keeps you connected to the things you love to do? Knowing where your passion originates is a career selling point. Some industries are looking for internal motivation, (helping profession, education, sciences, and arts). Other industries need the externally motivated, (PR/marketing, entertainment, business, legal profession). A quick note of caution, understand that your “fuel source” must be replenished or you will run on empty. The technical term for not refueling is “burnout”– don’t let it happen to you.  TCE Power Statement: Find Your Life’s Work Not a Work Life!
  1. Deliver Your Ambition and Accomplishments: Today’s employers are looking for that top 10 – 30% employee who can perform in the marketplace. Make sure you have what it takes to meet their needs—be a “performer”, not just a “presenter.” Be an “employee”, not just a “candidate.” Expect HR associates to dig deeper and ask questions regarding performance, achievements, initiative and leadership potential. Hiring managers and recruiters are aware that candidates can “shine” in a one-hour interview, but what about the long haul? You must make sure that your career search tools combine what you can do, with what you’ve got. You must showcase your accomplishments, how you achieved them, and your next steps.   Be prepared to demonstrate your contributions, projects managed, and how you “stepped out of the boat” at various levels (individual, group, community). To have nothing… won’t do.   If you are struggling in the performance/accomplishment area, now is the time to “get on top of that.” Get involved and become active in the community. Join professional groups and associations. Find volunteer opportunities that meet your life mission and academic standards. Don’t just take a back seat, secure a position of leadership and develop those skills and accomplishments. Power Statement: Work Like You Have a Purpose.
  1. Manage “Your” Business: Successful people see themselves as an enterprise; they act and think like a business. They value performance, change management, accomplishments, quality, self-management, time-management, community service, and reputation. You are a business—an enterprise with a quality based product line, and skilled knowledge base. Your resume should function as your brochure, highlighting your strengths and minimizing your limitations. Your interviews are to be considered “sales” meeting where you share your core products (passion, purpose, personality, potential, and performance) with a potential vendor. Your image, dress, and conduct should be consistent with your business standards. Your follow-up contact (thank you letter and/or follow-up call) will close the deal, and leave a lasting professional impression on the employer.   Membership does have its privileges. Join the “Top 10 – 30% Club” or settle for the average career seeker club…you decide. TCE Power Statement: Your Reputation Will Outweigh a Resume Any Day!

Copyright © June 2014 by Francina R. Harrison, MSW

 

Francina R. Harrison, MSW The Career Engineer® (TCE) is an National Career, Business & eNetworking Expert, Author, Speaker, TV/Radio personality and the visionary behind the award-winning www.TCEnow.com The Career Engineer’s expertise has been featured on the TJMS, Tavis Smiley Show, BlackEnterprise.com, Chicago Tribune, Fox TV, NBC affiliates & hundreds of sites on the Internet.   Contact TCE @ 757-745-4823 or info@tcenow.com

 

 

TCE “Tough Love”: Overqualified/Under-qualified – Think Again!

“The reason I can’t get hired is because I am overqualified for the jobs down here!” (Career Seeker in Virginia).   Have you ever heard or used this statement before?  Have you felt or thought that you are NOT getting anywhere because you bring either  “to much” or “to little” to the table?   No doubt…the 21st century job market is a challenge, but not impossible. We have a saying in TCE Land, “In order to increase your employability, you have to reduce your competition.”  It’s this simple and/or complicated formula that can make ALL the difference in winning your next amazing Monday morning opportunity.

So…with that being said, have you really MAXIMIZED your career brand to it’s BEST potential?  Are you in the right marketplace for the value that YOU bring? Have you done, EVERYTHING you can to ensure your are IN-DEMAND versus DEMANDING a job? After all of these questions, do you STILL think  or FEEL that you are being passed up and ignored in the market aka” overqualified/under qualified?”  Well, never fear…The Career Engineer is here to share “her “tough love” on the overqualified/under qualified dilemma (note to self…it’s a myth!)

Here are some TCE tips to bust this myth in your job search:

  • NOT IN THE RIGHT MARKET:  Researching and defining YOUR market is the name of the game!   A successful career brand should produce meetings in the markets that fit your knowledge, skills or abilities. If you believe you are not hired because you are OVERQUALIFIED or UNDER QUALIFIED, review your career marketing plan, make some changes and get some help!
  • TRANSITIONING – MAXIMIZE TRANSFERABLE SKILLS:  Still using the same “blah, blah” words?  Here are some examples to get your juices flowing: fiscal accountability, project management, vendor management, business development, technology aptitude, public speaking, training, administration, etc.
  • A SLOW JOB SEARCH IS (30) MONTHLY CONTACTS: Two (2) contacts a week is NOT a job search, IT’S A PRETEND SEARCH!  Develop a targeted and strategic market between 30 – 100 employers and get your quality/performance brand…out there!  No this is NOT impossible to do (yes, I heard you!)
  • TCE NETWORKING 101: “It’s NOT Who You KNOW, It’s Who KNOWS YOU!” Diversify your networking circles and increase your brand power.  Even in this day of super technology, there is NOTHING like the human-to-human connection. Want to be a REALationship networker, check out the TCE Career & Business Network Today.
  • TCE JOB SEARCH TIP:  Use the  TCEJobStop as part of your sourcing strategy:   (Fresh Jobs shared daily here and across the USA)

“Don’t Get Anxious – Get Prepared” The Career Engineer: http://TCEnow.com Email: info@TCEnow.com 757-745-4TCE (4823), Twitter @CareerEngineer, Like Us on Facebook.com/dontgetanxious

News Alert: The Career Engineer is an Approved “Helper” on Google HelpOuts!

As we say in TCE Land, “PushUp!” We are HONORED to be an approved professional Helper in the Google HelpOut Community. We can NOW serve YOU with innovation directly from your Google Hangout Powered devices from the privacy of your OWN space.  This not only helps us to REACH you more effectively…but we are AMPD about using our cool, new …toys!

We will share MORE about this exciting news during our TCE LIVE Broadcast this evening, so don’t you miss it! Click below and check out our TCE Career Re-engineering HelpOut

TCE Radio Chats w/Chaz Pitts-Kyser, Author of Careeranista, Are You Ready To Get Hired?

Today on TCE Radio we featured author Chaz Pitts-Kyser on our show as she talked about her new book “Careeranista:  The Woman’s Guide to Success After College”:

ABOUT OUR GUEST!

Ms. Pitts-Kyser is the founder of Careeranista, a company created to inspire, support, and educate women in their quest to lead more fulfilling lives; and a writer and speaker with a passion for empowering college students and young professionals to achieve personal and career success. As a keynote speaker and workshop facilitator, she is known for inspiring, educating, and entertaining her audience through her interactive presentation style, and she has spoken at universities and conferences throughout the United States.

Find Additional Jobs Podcasts with The Career Engineer on BlogTalkRadio

TCE Top 5 Networking Disasters a “TCE Tough Love” Segment

Your Career Engineer was on TV today sharing some Networking blunders that can keep ALL OF US, in the “I have no money and I am broke” line.  You know that I don’t want that to happen, so here is the segment from today’s show that  describes those “Networking Disaster Personas.”   Make sure that YOU are not one of…THEM!  I also have a YouTube video, How to Network Like a Rock Star, check it out that shares a bit more of this TCE style.  Plus in my youtube video I look directly into the camera…I am not a fan of profile views…YUK!

  • The STALKER:  You want THAT Connection & think you are ENTITLED too it…BUT stop “following” the “A Gamers” around…It’s very irritating and does more HARM than good!   TCE Tip: Stop it!
  • The BUSTER:  You see a conversation and just BUST into it without a tasteful and tactful entrance!  You are now…toast!  TCE Tip:  It’s called impulse control!
  • THE KIDNAPPER:  Stop holding one-person hostage all night, they are there to meet OTHER people!  Monopoly is a board game you play with your family…does not work at networking events. .  TCE Tip:  It’s OK to Let them Go…
  • The FAKER:  Stop using champagne words with an orange juice brand!   Who are you trying to impress…the AIR?   Pretending to be a PERFORMER is a dangerous move.  TCE Tip:  There is a true value…. in being REAL!  
  • LIFE STORY TELLER: Not interested in your activities since birth (Over share warning).  Find your 60-second introduction, followed by an up to 5 min performance/tactful chat.  If you don’t have one…Go home or…get coached by TCE!

 

The Journey is More Important Than the Destination

The Career Engineer

The BEST is YET To Come!  (Remembering Bishop William D. Scott Today)

TCE “hum…”Moment:  So…I had a moment of reflection this afternoon and became a bit overwhelmed with gratitude/appreciation for everything I/we have experienced since we started The Career Engineer TCE.  Of course,  if you are a techie addict like me, when you get these feelings and you have a MacBook Pro, you start playing with your limited creativity and this powerful graphic computer.  As I was “thinking and playing with creativity”  I remember something that Bishop Scott (My pastor who left this world to soon a few months ago) said to me about all the @$#!%  (that’s my language upgrade,  not his) I experienced in 2013.

Gone But Not Forgotten, Bishop William D. Scott

You remember 2013…it was full of  sequestration, shutdown, fiscal cliff drama, lame duck congress,  contract losses,  job losses, losing loved ones…it was a tough time.  But before Bishop left this earth he would say “over and over” again to the congregation…and a few days before his death my last words from him was “Francina — You Ain’t SEEN Nothing Yet, The BEST is YET To Come!’ So enjoy this “very fast pace – 45 second” reflection of some of the GREAT places and spaces that my GOD has allowed this “average girl who does not know how to quit” to experience.  Sometimes it’s good to reflect on where you started…and what’ you’ve been through;  as the journey can be more important than the destination (another wisdom note from Bishop Scott).  Oh …and we are NOT done yet! Because My BEST is STILL…Coming!

 

TCE Career Super Bowl 2014: Are You In It to Win It?

The Big Game this year showcases a showdown between extreme experience (Old Lion – Manning) versus a fresh new perspective (New Lion – Wilson).  Both candidates’ aka NFL teams want the job (the Super Bowl Ring); but the REAL question is…who has what it takes to win it!  What has more value …experience or performance (or are both equally important?)  

The same can be true in our careers, at the end of the day, the Super Bowl and Your Job Search will always comes down to who wants it more…and who SELLS it BEST. So The Career Engineer says to the TEAM that wants to win…Let’s Go Get It!   (PushUp to TCE VA Member “Ms. Lady V” who helped me…with this SuperBowl content!)

 Here’s How You Win The 2014 Big Career Game…TCE Style! 

  • Decide That You are Playing to WIN!  Positive mindset is essential (Think and Act like a Winner). “As a Job Seeker Thinks…so He/She is”
  • Block & Tackle:  Have REAL answers for the TOUGH questions. (Know Your Barriers to Employment or do you have FEAR of Success).
  • Don’t Fumble:  Practice & Plan (You’ MUST have a Game Plan…always; even if the response is NO!)
  • When Someone Throws You the Ball…Catch It!  Focused Action, Focused A-Game, and a Powerful Follow-up …  can WIN the game!
  • Ready to FIND another Team?    Use the TCEJobStop (One of the BEST Career Search Niche Boards!)

 

 

 

 

736 LIVE Viewers Learned HOW to Make 2014 the Best Year Ever! How About You?

TCE on abc tvOver 736 LIVE Viewers , from across the USA and abroad…can’t be wrong!  Now is the time to start your 2014 Career & Business Season and “The Career Engineer is here to help.  In 40 minutes, TCE delivered FACTS, Employment/Biz NEWS, RESOURCES, BOOSTERS & PITFALLS in this TCE broadcast  to ensure that 2014 is the BEST YEAR EVER! The remaining 10 minutes or so were responses to organic question, LIVE MOMENTS of FUN and virtual networking.. (make sure you click “archive chat” when you  view the broadcast to see  websites and links of our RSVP’d viewers).  Now here comes the REAL question…ARE YOU READY to make the 52  Monday mornings in 2014….AWESOME? TCE gives you the directive and the charge to FIRE-UP your brand and make it happen (yes all of this in less time than it takes for you to fill out a quality job application or apply for a business loan!) Here are some concepts that TCE hit home in the broadcast  (oh… and we POWER NETWORKED…too!)  Big PushUp & ShoutOut to Tonnie Harrison Lady V (TCE Ambassador) and Opal the Gem  (TCE Ambassador/FlyGirl)  for their support!

  • DEFINE and WALK INTO YOUR PURPOSE (Do You..stop the FAKE it to Make It Model!),
  • DELIVER YOUR PASSION (the REAL AUTHENTIC YOU)
  • Connect with the RIGHT folks and learn how to POWER DISCONNECT (yes time to unload)
  • Get in the RIGHT POSITION to change the Game…forever!  (Timing/REALationships are everything)

Watch this LIVE SPREECAST and start your transition today!

TCE 2014 Theme “You Ain’t SEEN Nothing Yet…The BEST is YET To Come”

 

Five Keys to Getting the Job Your Deserve (Ask The Career Engineer)

According to the US Department of Labor, approximately 11 million Americans are still unemployed. Now the American worker is faced with finding the American Dream in the ultra-competitive, “employer choice” career market of today. How do you compete in this global marketplace? What is the career getting “formula” for today’s workforce? It’s simple, increase your employability and decrease your competition. This “formula” is necessary in order for you to increase your potentials and become the employee that companies want. The self-aware, performance-based employee, who uses action-oriented career strategies, will “reduce” their competition and increase employment opportunities. Not a performance employee…use the below strategies to improve your results.

1. Companies today are looking for that top 10 – 30% employee. Make sure you have what it takes to meet their needs. You must become “performers” and not just “presenters.” Companies want “employees” and not just “candidates.”

2. Expect performance based/behavioral interviewing. Nowadays, expect HR associates to “dig deeper” and ask questions regarding performance, achievements, initiative and leadership potential. Hiring managers and recruiters are aware that candidates can “shine” in a one-hour interview.

3. Be prepared to deliver salesmanship. You must make sure that your career search tools are sharing “what you have done with what you’ve got.” You must showcase your accomplishments, how you achieved them, and your next steps.

4. Accomplishments are mandatory. Be prepared to demonstrate your contributions, projects managed and how you “stepped out of the box” at various levels (individual, team and/or community). To have nothing… will not do.

5. Stability is very important today. If you have gaps, be prepared to explain. However, keep it business savvy and honest. Volunteering during an employment gap could actually work in your favor.

A Case for Volunteering: Find an organization that supports your life philosophy and offer some method of active contribution. Volunteering can also assist in your social networking, skill development and at times “personal” sense of worth. One of the best benefits of volunteering is that it helps with “gap” information and keeps you active. Plus, employers are impressed with sincere volunteers as it demonstrates your civic awareness and responsibilities. Check out Volunteermatch.org

A Case for Networking: Most employment resources will cite that networking accounts for 50 percent of all employment leads and subsequent hires. Networking is a skill that you must develop for life. Join professional associations that are in your industry, volunteer organizations, sports/recreational groups, faith groups or join a school’s PTA. Let your network know that you are in the employment market and don’t keep your career search a secret. Update your professional social media platform by joining networks such as www.facebook.com, www.linkedin.com or www.Twitter.com These are free professional networking sites and you can connect with professionals on a global scale.

Have a question for The Career Engineer ?  Then submit them to questions@TCEnow.com

All I Want for the Christmas is a Brand New Job!

Happy Thanksgiving!  Go From Seasonal  – Full time Worker…TCE Style

All I want for Christmas is a brand new Job!  Have you heard that the job hunt and connections REALLY slow down during the holidays? NOT!  In fact it’s a GREAT time to either PREPARE or MAKE critical connections.  The Career Engineer  is here…to share some “pre-turkey” Career Movement Tips during the holiday season.

TCE Holiday Career Winning Tips

  • Sustainable Businesses Create Sustainable Jobs (TCE Hint:  Seek out GREAT Businesses – They Need GREAT talent)
  • Seasonal help Ideas:   Logistics(Shipping), tax preparation services, Retail, Staffing/recruiting and   business Development (Sales).
  • Seasonal employees HAVE the Opportunity to Showcase Their Value/Performance (Make sure you Shine!)
  • Competition is EXTREME, BUT the seasonal worker has the advantage…USE IT!!
  • Major shipping companies such as FedEx, UPS and retailers have upgraded seasonal employers to FTE (not just support but in staff positions)!

Holiday Career & Biz Hunting Links:

“Don’t Get Anxious – Get Prepared”  The Career Engineerhttp://TCEnow.com  Email:  info@TCEnow.com  757-745-4TCE , Twitter @CareerEngineer

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