Keppie Careers http://www.keppiecareers.com Social media speaker, social media consultant, job search coach Tue, 19 Aug 2014 15:18:49 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.4 How a Digital Detox Can Help Your Career http://www.keppiecareers.com/digital-detox-can-help-career/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/digital-detox-can-help-career/#comments Tue, 12 Aug 2014 10:30:00 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=12167 How interconnected do you need to be? Have you thought about how being tethered to mobile devices may impact your career and wellbeing? This is a guest post by Lindsey Pollak, a bestselling author, Millennial workplace expert and spokesperson for...

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How interconnected do you need to be? Have you thought about how being tethered to mobile devices may impact your career and wellbeing? This is a guest post by Lindsey Pollak, a bestselling author, Millennial workplace expert and spokesperson for The Hartford’s My Tomorrow campaign.

Last year, 2013, marked the first year that Americans spent more time online on our mobile devices than on our computers. Millennials, not surprisingly, lead the pack in mobile—spending the most time shopping, texting and reading the news through their smartphones and other devices. This past February, Facebook announced that it would be acquiring the private text messaging service, WhatsApp, for a whopping $19 billion, demonstrating the tremendous value of owning mobile eyeballs.

Naturally, the mobile mania has made its way into the workplace, enabling employees to work anytime, anywhere. This has created a need for companies to incorporate flexibility around typical workplace hours and environments as well, making company policy on mobility and flexibility a necessity. Flexibility around the use of mobile has become an expectation for young workers in particular when evaluating potential employers.

Despite this mobile mania, Millennials are recognizing that unplugging from time to time is just as important as maintaining their social savviness, particularly as they rise in their careers. They believe it’s important for leaders to be tech-savvy, but not tech-reliant. Eighty-six percent of Millennials in The Hartford’s 2013 Leadership Survey said the use of social media holds some importance to being an effective leader, but they clearly do not view it as a major contributor. Just 22 percent said it is very important or absolutely critical.

As we all know, the lure of social media is hard to ignore at work or at home. Mobile is all around us – literally – so it’s important to take time away from our screens. A digital detox can keep your health up, stress down and refresh you so you can improve your productivity. And, believe it or not, taking a break from electronics can actually increase productivity and keep you on track with tasks. In a recent survey conducted by meQuilibrium, 50 percent of the respondents checked their work email outside the office, while at the same time 73 percent felt that using electronic devices contributed to stress in their lives.

What does a digital detox entail? Take a day off or a week off, whichever you believe will be most beneficial, and remove your work email from your phone. Check your email only at designated times during the day. Take a break from social media sites, e-newsletters, Candy Crush and even the habit of checking your weather app multiple times a day. You’ll likely find, when you are finished with your detox, you’ll feel renewed and will be able to approach tasks with a newfound energy or sense of clarity. If you cut out the use of digital tools, you also might be surprised at how much you can get done without them.

If you’re nervous about completely unplugging, start with a mini-detox during your first couple of hours after work. Try to use the time to relax and unwind from your day – not as a continuation of the last task you were working on, or to finish up the one last deliverable. Sometimes in order to objectively view a problem or business strategy you need to take a step back and view it from the outside. Removing yourself from the office, physically and digitally, is a great way to do that.

Learn more about Lindsey Pollak and read about her upcoming book, Becoming the Boss: New Rules for the Next Generation of Leaders, by visiting her website.

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What happens when you lie on your resume http://www.keppiecareers.com/happens-lie-resume/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/happens-lie-resume/#comments Thu, 07 Aug 2014 10:30:12 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11966 “Seeking liars; apply within.” An unlikely headline for any job. While some employers may be lazy and fail to confirm credentials before hiring certain applicants, people who embellish their qualifications or lie about them are always at risk for losing...

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“Seeking liars; apply within.” An unlikely headline for any job. While some employers may be lazy and fail to confirm credentials before hiring certain applicants, people who embellish their qualifications or lie about them are always at risk for losing their positions — even after having worked in the job for years.

Case in point, news reports indicate that Steve Masiello’s coaching career has gone into limbo because the University of South Florida (USF) decided to verify his credentials before extending a formal offer to recruit him away from his current position at Manhattan College. Clearly, based on his bio posted on his current employer’s website, he was representing himself as having a bachelor’s degree. A background check uncovered the lie; he never graduated. Now, he stands to lose the offer to join USF he is on leave from his current job as a result. One lie could result in two lost jobs.

If you don’t want to be looking over your shoulder or hoping no one in HR gets suspicious and decides to audit their files, avoid these whoppers on your resume:

Lies About Past Employers

Do not lie about where you worked, even if you think it sounds impressive to pad your resume with big-name employers. It’s very easy to verify employment, even via a quick review of LinkedIn contacts and an email or two.

Lies of Omission

If you think failing to mention key points will keep you out of trouble, think again. “You never actually asked me if I graduated with a degree” will not serve as a good excuse if you’re approached about lying about your academic credentials that may be listed in an ambiguous manner on your resume. Leaving dates off your resume and failing to disclose other details is not wise.

As illustrated in Masiello’s case, these lies can come back to bite you, even after you’ve been in a job. In fact, there was a case of a dean at MIT who resigned her post after working there for 28 years when the university audited its files and learned she did not have degrees from the three schools listed on her initial resume.

Half-Truths

Plan to leave a job off your resume because you were only there for a short time? Keep in mind, there is a lot of scrutiny on new hires, and if a company conducts a background check, you’ll need to be prepared to explain why you didn’t want anyone to know you worked in that company. You don’t want to raise any red flags or spook employers who might wonder what else they don’t know about you before they hire you.

Little Embellishments

You’ve likely read about how personal branding is an important part of marketing yourself for a job, but you may have incorrectly assumed boosting your qualifications was part of growing your brand. Avoid embellishing your titles, your mentors or your skills and accomplishments on your resume and you’re much more likely to land in a job that’s the right fit for you. Avoid this big job search mistake to find – and keep – your next job.

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

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Can you “text in” sick at work? http://www.keppiecareers.com/can-text-sick-work/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/can-text-sick-work/#comments Tue, 05 Aug 2014 10:30:10 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11972 No matter where you work, knowing how to communicate effectively with your boss, colleagues and clients is key to your continued success. However, with so many different mechanisms to get in touch with people, it isn’t always easy to choose the most appropriate...

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Don't text while drivingNo matter where you work, knowing how to communicate effectively with your boss, colleagues and clients is key to your continued success. However, with so many different mechanisms to get in touch with people, it isn’t always easy to choose the most appropriate tools to communicate. For the traditionalists, in-person communication has always trumped all other methods, including other long-standing options, such as telephone and email.

However, what if your boss or team reside in far-flung spots all over the globe – or at least all over town? Many people rarely, if ever, see their colleagues in person due to telecommuting and team members based in different places. When in-person interaction requires an airplane ride, you need to consider other appropriate methods to get in touch. The tricky thing: it’s not always obvious what’s appropriate and what is not.

Go-to communication in lieu of in-person meetings now can include: phone, email, text, direct messages (via Twitter), Facebook messages, or, in some cases, even Instagram, SnapChat,Whatsapp or other texting applications. Some people even communicate with their bosses by simply sending an image via text!

However, just because you can doesn’t mean you should. In an environment where there are so many methods to connect and communicate, it’s even more important to evaluate the best tools to use when engaging professionally with your boss or co-workers.

Consider these scenarios and make a decision about how to communicate based on your circumstances:

“Calling in” sick.
This could be a misnomer in the future, if talking on the phone becomes less typical and texting even more accepted. Unless your boss specifically requested you to communicate your sick days via text, it’s generally expected that a sick day requires a phone call. Of course, there are many exceptions. Maybe your boss is in a different time zone or calling isn’t practical. Consider other, more permanent options to communicate, such as email, in those cases. Even if you don’t text, however, keep an open mind and be aware that texting is becoming more accepted in many work environment. If your boss wants you to “text” in sick, don’t balk.

Sharing good news.
It’s always fun to share good news on the phone or in person, but good news may give the communicator a “pass” on worrying about appropriate tools. The better the news, the more excited someone will be to learn about it and the less likely the recipient is to analyze whether or not you should have communicated it in a different way.

While you should absolutely be attentive to the typical methods of communicating, unless your boss never checks texts, it’s unlikely anyone will complain if you text a screen shot of your great sales numbers or a photo representing a big win. Consider following it up with a more formal update, such as via email or phone.

Asking for a Raise
Some things haven’t shifted with the times. It’s unlikely even the most text friendly boss will want to receive a request for a raise via text, or even email. It’s best to communicate this type of request either in person, if possible, or on the phone if an in-person meeting isn’t feasible.

Constantly evaluate.
The best approach for any professional is to ask in advance about preferred ways to communicate. If you see people are changing how they communicate, re-assess and ask if you have questions about what’s expected and acceptable. Even though many bosses would balk at a text to “call in” sick, it’s possible your situation is different, or you have a supervisor who doesn’t fit a typical mold. As more communication options become available, the onus will always be on the individual to evaluate and make the best choice based on his or her own circumstances.

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

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Strangest reasons to miss work http://www.keppiecareers.com/strangest-reasons-miss-work/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/strangest-reasons-miss-work/#comments Thu, 31 Jul 2014 10:30:47 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11970 Is work becoming tiresome? Do you need a “mental health day” and a break from your job and co-workers? Sometimes, just calling in sick (cough, cough) doesn’t seem inventive or interesting enough, and you ramp it up a bit by...

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file000671618538Is work becoming tiresome? Do you need a “mental health day” and a break from your job and co-workers? Sometimes, just calling in sick (cough, cough) doesn’t seem inventive or interesting enough, and you ramp it up a bit by offering a more interesting excuse.

Before you decide to call in sick (when you’re not really sick), or provide another excuse to stay home, keep in mind that some distrusting employers may decide to check up on you. A survey from Career Builder found 30% of employers checked in on employees to make sure they weren’t making up excuses to miss work. The survey found 64% required a doctor’s note for being sick, 48% called the employee during the missed day of work, 19% snooped on social media posts, 17% asked another employee to call the worker and 15% reported that they had driven by the employee’s house. (Presumably to determine if the person was actually at home or not.)

Recently, a man in Florida went so far as to fake a home burglary to avoid going into work. Apparently, he did not know that reporting a false crime was actually illegal; he wound up in jail.

Most people don’t go to such lengths to avoid work, but they do come up with some interesting excuses. Have you ever heard (or used) any of these:

“I was so overwrought because my team lost last night, I just couldn’t get out of bed.” There’s a reason the term “fan” comes from the work “fanatic,” but even the most die-hard fans would balk at this excuse for missing work.

“There was a squirrel in my house and I needed to wait for animal control. They took all day to get there.” It sounds crazy, but it is possible for outdoor animals to find their way into the house. Would you really want to leave home with a squirrel roaming your house? However, if this is true, it may be wise to post some timely pictures on social media of the squirrel chowing down on your cat’s food in the kitchen.

“The cat got out and is hiding under the deck.” If you have animal lovers in your office, they probably wouldn’t expect you to leave your indoor cat outdoors for the day. However, as with the squirrel, you better have some photos, and does it really take you the whole day to rescue your cat?

“There’s a sinkhole in my yard.” What sounds like a crazy excuse could actually be true, but this is pretty easy to confirm, especially if your employer is the “drive by to check on you” type.

“I didn’t have a thing to wear.” Even if you work in a fashion conscious environment, this is unlikely to hold water as a reasonable excuse to stay home from work. Similarly, “I can’t find my shoes” will not garner much sympathy.

“The electricity went out and I can’t open my garage door.” Even if you’re not particularly handy, it shouldn’t be too difficult to disable to automatic garage door. Alternatively, consider other transportation options, such as a cab or a ride with a friend.

Even if you work in a creative industry, make sure you’re using your skills to your advantage, and not to get you in trouble with your boss and colleagues. Don’t be the one in the office best known for reasons NOT to come to work!

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

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When you should use “reply all” http://www.keppiecareers.com/use-reply/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/use-reply/#comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 10:30:29 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11968 While some say email is a dying breed (some colleges don’t even assign students email addresses), the fact is, many people still rely on email for personal and work communication. Even though this avenue of communication is considered a dinosaur by...

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file5551237405366While some say email is a dying breed (some colleges don’t even assign students email addresses), the fact is, many people still rely on email for personal and work communication. Even though this avenue of communication is considered a dinosaur by those shifting to texting or direct messaging for their main modes of keeping in touch, there are still etiquette elements that confuse some users and cause consternation among their peers and colleagues. Chief among them is “reply all.”

Innocuous enough, on the surface, “reply all” is a great convenience. Instead of typing everyone’s email address on a distribution, you can easily send an email to everyone on the list. However, we’ve all heard stories of how things can easily go awry when people mistakenly reply to an entire list instead of one person.

No one likes to get emails they don’t need to see, and even if the solution is a swift tap of the “delete” button, using “reply to all” on email messages can irritate people. Consider these situations and think twice before you send your next email to everyone on the possible recipient list.

Find a job in communications

Who needs to know?

Do “reply all” when everyone receiving the email really needs to know what you have to say. For example, when your boss asks everyone on the team via email to step up to handle a particular, timely project. Reply to all if you’re volunteering so no one else does extra work you are already handling. However, if you are too busy, or have three other projects on your docket and cannot pick up the extra work, there is no need to reply to all. No one else needs to know what you’re doing; just reply to your boss to let her know you aren’t planning to take on the project unless you hear back from her.

Thanks.

When you’re just saying “thanks,” or a similar message, it’s usually not necessary for everyone to see it. Don’t reply all with inconsequential information or notes; send those directly to the people who need to see them only. Otherwise, you’ll likely inspire everyone else to roll their eyes in disdain when they open your email to find it contains nothing of consequence.

Personal comments.

If you’re adding a personal comment to your note, don’t include it in a “reply to all” message. For example, if you’re asking how a person’s date went last night, or commenting on a particular personal detail, send it only to the person intended, not to the whole office.

Angry emails.

Don’t reply to all if you are angry. Generally, it’s best to avoid responding to anything in writing if you are upset, but it’s even more dangerous to blanket the whole office with an email written in the heat of the moment.

Snarky messages.

By the same token, do not use reply all if you are being snarky, scolding or disrespectful. Keep in mind, anything you put in writing can and will be used against you. Sending a less-than-kind message out to a whole list of people increases the chances that you’ll regret it later.

Bottom line.

Always think before sending a message to a group and ask yourself if anything in the message is appropriate for everyone on the distribution list. Then, question whether or not everyone on the list would appreciate the contents of the information: do they need to have this email? If not, change your reply to reach only the necessary recipients, and everyone will be happier.

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

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Are recruiters using Facebook? http://www.keppiecareers.com/are-recruiters-using-facebook/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/are-recruiters-using-facebook/#comments Thu, 24 Jul 2014 10:30:48 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11960 Do you know what recruiters like more than anything? Easy access to find quality candidates and few barriers to entry. Do you know one way you can provide this? Use Facebook as a professional platform. Unless you’ve been living under...

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file1111243438731Do you know what recruiters like more than anything? Easy access to find quality candidates and few barriers to entry. Do you know one way you can provide this? Use Facebook as a professional platform.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know posting unprofessional information on Facebook can prevent you from landing a job. Employers don’t like profanity, comments about illegal drugs, posts of a sexual nature or excessive misspellings and bad grammar. What they do like, according to Jobvite’s research, is to be able to find you online and to learn about you. If you put time, effort and energy into creating some public information in Facebook, you could find yourself with a new job sooner than you thought.

Recruiters are looking for you.
Recruiters will source new hires where ever they can find them. With the exponential number of people using Facebook and the amount of time they spend there, it isn’t surprising to learn from Undercover Recruiter that 70 percent of recruiters say they connect better with potential jobseekers due to widespread use of Facebook and 85 percent of recruiters using Facebook recommend it as a tool to other recruiters. (Tweet this stat.)

Companies are spending a lot of time, effort and money to connect with you on Facebook. They want you to “like” their career pages, and they hope you’ll post smart messages there. Don’t disappoint them.

Make your information available.
You don’t have to post your vacation photos for everyone to see, but if you want to be found, it’s a good idea to allow certain sections of your Facebook profile to be public, including: Work and Education, Professional Skills and Contact information. Not only will this make it possible for people looking for someone with your skills to find you, it also provides professional information that will help people in your network connect with you when they are in job search mode.

Another benefit of making this data public, it allows you to engage with Glassdoor.com’s“Inside Connections” tool, which provides job seekers access to their Facebook networks to identify people who work at companies with interesting jobs. When people in your network provide public professional data on Facebook, you’ll also be able to access information from friends of friends for networking purposes via this tool. Clearly, making these items public on Facebook helps you be found as well as enhances networking opportunities. Since four in ten job seekers found their favorite or best job through personal connections, don’t ignore this opportunity to tap your online network.

Give them a little something.
Since many recruiters want to know a little something about you beyond what’s on your resume, why not give them a little professional information? Create public updates in your private Facebook page and you have the opportunity to post and share certain items that will be easy for people you do not know to find. This is easy to do.

Follow the link on the top of your Facebook page to check your privacy settings.

Once there, click on the icon that says “Followers” on the left side of the screen. Then, under Who Can Follow Me, select the drop down that says “Everybody.”

This will give you an option to create public updates and for people to “follow” your public updates. Public updates can include links to news about your industry. If you’re in customer service, you can occasionally post a public update about the latest customer service trends. If you are a bank teller, you can post links about your company’s financials.

Answer the key question.
There’s no more important question to answer for job seekers than, “How can I help employers find me?” Facebook could be one way to answer it.

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

 

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Is it a good idea to work for a friend? http://www.keppiecareers.com/good-idea-work-friend/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/good-idea-work-friend/#comments Tue, 22 Jul 2014 10:30:21 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11958 You need a job, and a friend needs some help. Perhaps it’s a match made in heaven. Or, it’s the beginning of a nightmare you wish you never began. Does working for a friend offer potential or pitfalls? Is it a good...

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file9571236549144You need a job, and a friend needs some help. Perhaps it’s a match made in heaven. Or, it’s the beginning of a nightmare you wish you never began. Does working for a friend offer potential or pitfalls?

Is it a good idea to work for a friend? In certain circumstances, where the stars all align, it can be great. If you plan ahead and consider potential pitfalls, you’ll have a better chance of thriving in this work situation.

Consider the worst-case scenario. 
If things don’t work out, how will you feel if you lose the friendship? If you’re considering working for your very best friend, it may be too much of a risk.

What’s your history with the friend? 
One of the good things about working for a friend is that you may be able to rely on your knowledge to predict how she will be as a boss. Use what you know about your friend to decide if your relationship could overcome a professional disagreement or split. Does your friend hold grudges? Is he very dogmatic and only sees things his way? Have you experienced any difficulties or disagreements in your friendship in the past, and were you able to get past them? If your friendship has never been stressed and tested, it may not be the best idea to start now. However, if you know you can argue like cats and dogs and still “kiss and make up,” perhaps it’s worth the risk.

Make sure you are qualified. 
Usually, it’s up to the boss to decide if you’re qualified for the job. However, when you’re considering working for a friend, it’s a good idea to be responsible for figuring out if you’re a good match for the job. (Tweet this thought.) Your friend may give you a generous benefit of the doubt or assume you know certain things you really don’t. Be clear about the job description and how you can help accomplish the goals. If you can’t solve the organization’s problems, don’t take the job.

Get it in writing. 
Nothing is worse than ruining a good friendship over a misunderstanding. If you don’t already have one, ask for a definition of your job in writing. It’s important for everyone to understand what you are hired to do, and having it in writing means there’s no room for questions later.

Expect conflict. 
It’s not unusual for people who know each other well to eliminate professionally appropriate filters from conversation. Expect it will be tense at times. Conflict isn’t always a bad thing, and you can always agree to disagree.

Communicate.
Communicating clearly will be important before you decide to take a job working for your friend, and it will be even more important once you are working for him or her.

Make a well-informed decision. 
Without a crystal ball, you’ll never know if working for a friend will work out or not until you try. Just be sure you don’t go in blindly and overlook potential trouble spots and red flags.

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

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Is it okay to swear at work? http://www.keppiecareers.com/okay-swear-work/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/okay-swear-work/#comments Thu, 17 Jul 2014 10:30:42 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11956 It wouldn’t be surprising if you’ve heard what used to be language reserved for the locker room at work. As what used to be considered vulgar language makes its way into popular culture and finds its way on TV, many...

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Don't Say That jar, collecting coins for bad wordsIt wouldn’t be surprising if you’ve heard what used to be language reserved for the locker room at work. As what used to be considered vulgar language makes its way into popular culture and finds its way on TV, many believe it’s appropriate for professional settings, too.

Academic research validates that, sometimes, swearing does not negatively affect credibility. Forbes reported on a study by Cory R. Scherer and Brad J. Sagarin, who were at Northern Illinois University. Students listened to three speeches, and the two whose speakers cursed scored as being more persuasive than the speech without curse words.

In their study “Swearing at Work and Permissive Leadership Culture: When Anti-Social Becomes Social and Incivility Is Acceptable,” researchers Yehuda Baruch and Stuart Jenkins, of University of East Anglia in the U.K., discovered that swearing at work can actually help workers bond together, improve team spirit and form relationships. Especially if it’s unexpected, swearing can win attention (both positive and negative) and the user may gain authority, even if just for the moment.

If swearing can win friends and influence people, is it ever a big mistake?

In cases where professionals are expected to refrain from impulsivity, cursing at work may be damaging. If your job is to appear in control at all times, randomly letting out a stream of expletives is not going to enhance your credibility or trustworthiness. Additionally, keep in mind, some will view your use of profanity as a weapon to try to dominate a situation or to aggressively seize power from more polite peers.

There are also gradations of swearing, and some may be more acceptable at work than others. For example, saying, “sh**” after spilling a glass of water on yourself is unlikely to raise many eyebrows. Cursing someone out because they’ve made a mistake, on the other hand, could get you in trouble, even in the most profanity-friendly workplaces.

Should you drop the “F-bomb” at work? Interestingly, a survey on the Today Show’s website suggests no, by a vote of 31% to 69%.

Unless it is clear (for example, in many trading floors in the financial sector or on a loading dock) that swearing is an acceptable and expected way of communicating in your workplace, with so many potential uncertainties, including gender dynamics, individual preferences and the emotional responses possible, the best advice is to use profanity sparingly, if at all, when you’re at work.

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

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Things that drive you crazy about corporate life http://www.keppiecareers.com/crazy-corporate-life/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/crazy-corporate-life/#comments Tue, 15 Jul 2014 10:30:12 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11954 What drives you crazy about the corporate world? In an environment where conformity seems to be the rule, you may have even caught yourself participating in some of these hated rituals – even as you mock them to friends in...

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file0001344010980What drives you crazy about the corporate world? In an environment where conformity seems to be the rule, you may have even caught yourself participating in some of these hated rituals – even as you mock them to friends in happy hour after work. In the new, third edition of her book, They Don’t Teach Corporate in College, Alexandra Levit points out these conventions and traditions we love to hate.

1. Corporate Déjà Vu. It seems as though it’s a requirement in business that you spend huge amounts of time reporting the same information in a dozen different formats, attending status meetings where conversation from the week before is repeated word for word and where you put out the same fires, because your department doesn’t learn from its mistakes.

2. Name dropping. Also known as “invoking syndrome,” this occurs when colleagues try to persuade you to do what they want by name-dropping someone higher up. Whether the executive manager was actually involved or not, invoking him is a manipulative tactic used to get you to bend to your colleagues’ wishes. For example: “Really? Well, I spoke to the CEO last night, and he told me we have to do the event this way.”

3. Ego-mania. When certain people reach a high level in a company, they think that they are better than everyone else and that they are entitled to be treated like a god. Regardless of the issue, they believe they are always right and that they can’t possibly learn anything from someone lower on the chain.

4. Corporate jargon. If you think everyone in the business world speaks your language, think again. The business world’s language is one of subtlety, filled with euphemisms and pet phrases to cleverly disguise what people actually mean.

5. BureaucracyHow many departments does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Corporate business has a lengthy approval process for everything, and companies delight in changing those processes constantly so that you’re never sure which 10 departments you need to consult before a decision can be made.

6. Hypocrisy. Don’t you just love the way some companies tout values such as quality, entrepreneurship, innovation and integrity, when they would be perfectly happy if their employees just kept quiet and never suggested a disruptive change?

7. Uncommon Sense. Is common sense dead in the business world? People might make a joke of it, but this dearth of logical thought is kind of sad. It’s also frustrating when the obviously correct way to do something is staring everyone right in the face, and no one sees it.

8. Nonsensical Change. Every now and then, companies will decide to throw their departments up in the air and see where all the pieces land. Yes, it’s the reorganization (otherwise known as the dreaded re-org). Despite the fact that it results in mass confusion, greatly decreased productivity and low employee morale, companies continue to do it year after year.

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

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Is it important to have privacy on LinkedIn? http://www.keppiecareers.com/privacy-linked-in/ http://www.keppiecareers.com/privacy-linked-in/#comments Thu, 10 Jul 2014 10:30:39 +0000 http://www.keppiecareers.com/?p=11952 Privacy. Clearly, it’s fleeting in our “tell all,” “share everything on social media” society. As the fine line between the personal and the professional (is there even a line at all?) becomes less and less significant, it’s even more important...

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DSCN8580Privacy. Clearly, it’s fleeting in our “tell all,” “share everything on social media” society. As the fine line between the personal and the professional (is there even a line at all?) becomes less and less significant, it’s even more important to be vigilant so you know what you are sharing, with whom and potential consequences. Make no mistake about it: it’s up to you to manage your online identify and privacy.

One of the main benefits of using social media is it allows you to be found. In fact, it’s a main tenet of social media; your goal online should be to be discovered, and to magnetically attract people you want to hire you for jobs or consulting opportunities. Traditional media outlets would have you believe the worst thing you can do for your career is post information on social media. They feature big mistakes people make online leading to loss of income and jobs as representative reasons to stay offline.

However, for job seekers and business owners, it’s dangerous to don the online equivalent of Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak. Professional goals are difficult to accomplish if privacy settings are locked down to the point they effectively render the profiles useless. However, reducing privacy puts the onus on the user to understand ramifications of not sharing information they make private.

LinkedIn is clearly a key player in your professional online identity. Your goal on LinkedIn is to connect and engage with people; it’s expected that you will have a LinkedIn profile. Generally speaking, the best advice is to peruse privacy settings and choose the most open (least private) choice. Doing so positions you to be found more easily, and potentially to be invited to apply for opportunities. However, each individual user will have specific goals and reasons to share or want to hide certain information online. Overly tight privacy settings on LinkedIn can lead you to miss opportunities. These tips will help. (Tweet this thought.)

Review and scrutinize your choices on these settings in particular:

Turn on/off your activity broadcasts.
If you’re running an illicit job search, and planning to conduct a major overhaul of your LinkedIn profile, turn this off before making changes if you are worried it will alert your current boss. Consider turning it back on after your profile overhaul is complete.

Because LinkedIn will send out a message announcing that you have a new job if you update your job titles or add a project to your “experience” section, others who sometimes get dinged by this setting are people who own businesses and decide to change their official titles or people in jobs who update their job titles to be more descriptive or interesting. The last thing this group wants is for people to think they’ve taken new positions.

Communications.
Be alert and aware of how LinkedIn works by keeping an eye on messages you receive from the network. Check the “Communications” tab under settings to ensure you do receive the type of messages that will help you decide what you want to share with others.

Select what others see when you’ve viewed their profile. If you’re doing some “undercover” research on colleagues or competitors, feel free to set this to “anonymous.” However, leaving the setting locked down prevents you from seeing who is viewing your profile, and that represents lost opportunities. In general, it can be a good idea to let people know you’ve viewed their profile, especially before an interview. It makes you appear to be thorough and diligent about your research.

Select who can see your connections.
Some people worry they’ll compromise their privacy by allowing people to know who is connected to them. If you are in such a cut-throat field that your livelihood is in jeopardy if your connections are revealed, by all means, make this private. However, keep in mind, if everyone locked down this setting, networking on LinkedIn would be severely thwarted.

Change your photo profile and visibility.
This is a non-negotiable: your photo should be viewable for “everyone.” Otherwise, people who may want to learn more about you may be discouraged from reaching out because they see the default “shadow face” LinkedIn inserts in lieu of a picture.

Don’t forget to keep an eye on privacy settings; don’t set them and forget them. Be vigilant and make sure your settings match your goals, and you’ll be more likely to win new opportunities.

Originally appeared on AOLJobs.com.

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