“Remodeling” Your Career in 2022

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Today, while mindlessly browsing through social media, I came across an article containing a list of home trends that “are on their way out”.  Since I have just recently updated several areas of my home, I was intrigued and moved forward with reading, hoping that one of my remodeling projects wasn’t on the “out” list. I had only read a few snippets of the article when my mind wandered back to work, and I thought about what types of job search and resume trends have also been sent to pasture over the years? The following are some of the “ins/outs” to be thinking about as you embark on your next career “remodeling” project.

Your Resume:

In: Career Summary

Out: Objective

Starting at the top of your resume with the word “Objective” that tells the reader what you are “seeking” in your next career move is a big no-no, and OMG, so bland and boring. Just don’t. Instead, craft a compelling, leadership-focused, and keyword-saturated career summary that packs a punch and pulls the reader in wanting to learn more about you.

In: Accomplishments

Out: Daily job responsibilities

While you were hired to do certain tasks, those are not all that should be on your resume. Today’s resumes need to be accomplishment- and not task-focused. Use your career history section to show readers the impact you made in your past roles. Did your efforts result in revenue generation? Improvements in efficiency/productivity? Sharing the results of your work on your resume only enhances the reader’s understanding of the potential you have and the value you can offer in future roles.

 

Your Online Persona:

In: Presence on LinkedIn

Out: No presence on LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the world’s premier professional networking site for a reason – it works. Whether you’re actively seeking a new job or just trying to build your brand and connect with peers in your field, LinkedIn is where you need to be. Sign up for initial services is free, and if you need additional features and can afford them, LinkedIn has them ready for you. Be sure you fill out all relevant sections to build your profile, and make your content engaging so that it builds your brand appropriately and markets you for you jobs in your field.

 

Your Job Search Acumen:

In: Networking, Recruiters, Resume Distribution

Out: Sitting by the phone

So many of our clients tell us that they aren’t getting calls for interviews. So, we ask, what are YOU doing to put yourself out there as a viable candidate? Just applying for a job doesn’t always do the trick. You need to apply, follow-up, and keep looking until you start hearing back from companies and actually have interviews set up. Even if you get an interview scheduled-that doesn’t mean you’re going to get the job. It’s up to you to keep applying, networking, etc. until you land your dream job. Sitting by the phone day after day waiting for a call from the one company you applied to will only result in frustration and more than likely, no further along in your job search. Find a recruiter, network on professional sites like LinkedIn, and just get yourself out there. If you don’t know where to find a recruiter on your own, find a company that offers a resume distribution service where your resume can be sent out to literally thousands of recruiters in a matter of minutes.

YOU control the pace of your search and the number of places you apply. Make a list of companies and track when you applied, if you heard back, interview schedules, etc. If you are unemployed, your job search should be treated as a full-time job and deserves focus and time to get you to the next level.

 

Where to Find Jobs:

In: LinkedIn, Networking, Online Job Boards and Employment Sites

Out: One source shopping

Don’t just peruse your local newspaper (although many still do have a “Help Wanted” section) to look for jobs. Go online! Talk to your colleagues, family, and friends. Ask if they know of openings! Look on well-known job search sites and see what’s out there. Join groups and set-up alerts to be notified when a job that matches your skills/qualifications becomes available. LinkedIn has their own “Jobs” section to peruse. Use it to see what is available in your field/area. Have a specific company you’re targeting? Go directly to their website-you still may be redirected to another job search engine to apply, so make sure you apply per their instructions. If a job posting says “don’t call”, then don’t call. Always follow the application directions, because if you don’t, you may eliminate your candidacy up front. If you don’t have access to the internet, go to the library and use their tools/internet to look for jobs-just remember to completely logout out of any public computer so your personal information is not compromised.

 

Your Ability to Navigate the Job Market:

In: Knowing someone on the inside.

Out: What you know and what you have done will automatically get you in the door for an interview.

You have heard the saying “It’s not always what you know, sometimes it’s who you know…”? People would not still be repeating this phrase in the job market if there wasn’t some truth to it. In today’s competitive job market, many companies have a candidate in mind even before they post a job. YOU want to try to be that candidate. If you have a friend or former co-worker on the inside of a company you’re targeting, reach out to them. If they can give you some inside information to get you in the door – that’s great. Just be sure your contact has a good reputation with the company leadership. Otherwise, your credibility as a viable candidate may have just gone out the window.

As you are “remodeling” your career path, be sure the tools you are using and trends you are following are not outdated, so that you can optimize the time and effort you are putting forth as you pursue your dream job. If you are struggling with your career remodeling project, hire a professional. You would do it for your home improvement projects–why not for your career improvement projects?

 

 

Career Change Can Happen at Any Time…Will YOU Be Ready?

Career & Workplace

Recently, I was speaking with a client who was eager to get out of the industry she had worked in for 20+ years to follow her dreams of becoming an Interior Design/Home Improvement/House Flipping professional. As she had spent her entire career as a Purchasing Agent in the Automotive industry, she wasn’t sure how to start her journey into a more creative field, especially when she had been in the same one for so many years.

It’s actually quite easy. When making a career change, especially to a completely new industry, it’s important to focus on highlighting your transferrable skills and some of your biggest career accomplishments on your resume and LinkedIn profile. Here are some quick steps to get you moving forward to the job of your dreams:

  • Change up the format of your current resume – create a format that makes your transferrable skills stand out (don’t let the need to follow tradition scare you!) and ensure that those skills and best leadership qualifications are highlighted in your career summary, branding statement, and keyword list (areas of expertise, core competencies, etc.).
  • Transferrable skills – so many clients have told me “this is what I want to do, but I don’t think I’m qualified”, when actually – they really are. It just requires some thought and creative writing (which is why she hired a professional service). When making a career change, it’s imperative that you include skills you’ve used in your current field that could be applied to the next one. Organizational Development, Brand Development & Promotion, Project Management, Budget Administration, Process Improvement, Team Collaboration, Vendor Relations, Inventory Procurement, Cost Control, Negotiation Strategies, etc. These are all areas of expertise used across industries.
  • Show where you have made an impact – at any point in your career, you should be able to show where you’ve made an impact to the organization(s) you’ve worked for. Quantifiable results work well when you highlight your accomplishments in a “Career Highlights” section on your resume. Sales goals? Cost savings initiatives? Process or program improvements? Building partnerships that result in revenue growth for your company? Add financial or numerical values where you can, and show the impact you’ve made on the organization’s bottom line!
  • Education and credentials – this is another one that holds people back. Just because your degree is in one area doesn’t mean you can’t excel in another! Don’t let a label from 20 years ago hold you back! On-the-job training, experience, professional development, etc. are all things that can show you have diversity in what you know and what you are capable of doing in any field! There are also tons of online certifications and skill development you can get to prepare for and show you’re eager to learn about your new field. For this particular client, she was getting her real estate license to get some more experience in the industry, staging, client relations, etc. which will make her a more marketable asset for her clients, etc.
  • LinkedIn – As with your resume, your LinkedIn profile is your tool for getting noticed – but more importantly, this platform allows you to get noticed on a global scale with basically a click of a mouse. Make sure your profile is optimized with key terms and highlights using language recognized in your future industry. Even if you don’t have the licensing or certifications you need right away, you can still show that you are working toward those goals. Include links to projects you’ve completed to give readers a visual view of your creative style, published works, projects, etc.  There is a lot of room for information on LinkedIn, and you need to ensure you are using the site to showcase you in the best ways possible. NOTE: LinkedIn is a huge source for not only finding jobs and connecting with colleagues and other friends, but also for networking and joining groups within your new industry. The more you network and learn, the faster you will grow in your field.
  • Social Media – in addition to LinkedIn, you can market your skills, experience, and accomplishments on multiple sites to get your name out there. Start a business page, use creative content, and be sure to brand yourself appropriately – even when you are limited in the character amounts you can use – you can still find something short and sweet to speak to your abilities. Effective branding is key in getting noticed and pulling the reader in to want to learn more about you!

Don’t let age, lack of formal experience, or anything else keep you from pursuing your dream job. If you’re willing to learn and work hard, you can do whatever you want in your career and in life – you just need to prepare for the change, ramp up all of your marketing tools, and hit the ground running with a positive “I’ve got this” attitude.

You know the phrase…”it’s never too late to teach a dog new tricks”…it became a popular phrase for a reason. Take ownership of that mindset and rock your new career!

Post-COVID Benefits to Expect from Your Next Employer

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The COVID-19 pandemic will have lasting effects on the workforce in more ways than one. With stay-at-home orders forcing consumers to stay at home and non-essential workers to work remotely, or in a worst-case scenario, be furloughed or laid off, businesses have had to find creative ways to reel in customers and retain top talent.

For business owners, in order for your company to survive post-pandemic, you’re going to need to reimagine your benefits package to incentivize your workers to stay at your company. The coronavirus pandemic has shown many faults in our society, such as a need for healthcare, childcare, and other essential basic needs, which means finding new ways to alleviate some burdens can help bring in and retain top talent that can help grow your business.

Employees will also remember the actions you take during these unprecedented times. In order for your legacy to live on, you need to adjust to the new normal employees are expected to adapt to in the post-pandemic era. And as a prospective job candidate, it’s important to look at what companies did for their employees to help them navigate the pandemic. Whether you’re a business owner or a job hunter, these are some post-COVID benefits you should expect from your next employer.

  1. Healthcare

America is one of the only countries on the planet where citizens can get health coverage through their employers. While not mandated by law, depending on the size of your company, providing employer-sponsored healthcare to your staff will not only allow them to get the help they need when they’re sick but will show you care about their basic human needs.

One aspect of life the coronavirus has brought to light is that far too many people don’t have adequate healthcare. COVID exposed the American healthcare system’s fragility when millions of workers were left without a job during a deadly pandemic. With that said, employees are going to search for companies that offer comprehensive healthcare plans that will keep them safe and stable, even during unexpected medical emergencies.

As an employer, it’s best to find a provider that offers broad coverage rather than narrow, as it will appeal to a larger pool of workers and provide more options. After all, no one’s body is the same, so the more healthcare options your employees have, the better. The last thing an employee wants is to be stuck with a tough decision to get care that they can’t afford.

  1. Child care

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced millions of Americans across the country to abide by stay-at-home orders and quarantine until the virus is under control. While many states are reopening with certain measures in place, such as social distancing and mask-wearing, we’re not back to the normal we were once so comfortable with. One of the major disruptions that came about the pandemic was school and daycare closures, leading many students to learn remotely from the comfort of their homes. The problem? What do parents with essential jobs do?

Many families had to make hard sacrifices to determine how to take care of the children while still going to work and making money. Some had to make the difficult decision of quitting their job altogether, while others had to rearrange their schedules or find a new job where they could be home with their children while they learned.

Post-pandemic, many workers are going to look for employers who offer some sort of child care assistance to maintain a better work-life balance. This can take a few forms, such as having an on-site daycare facility where parents can drop their kids off, providing monetary assistance to cover expensive daycare costs, or giving workers flexible schedules that allow them to drop off and pick up their children when daycare facilities and schools close. Offering child care assistance will go a long way for many working parents. It will help ease stress and allow them to save for other life expenses, such as purchasing a new home, building a trust fund, buying a car, or going on vacation.

  1. Student loan assistance

Many employers require applicants to meet certain qualifications in order to be hired for a job. One of the most common qualifications is holding a bachelor’s degree, or in some cases, a master’s degree or beyond. While business owners need workers who have the education and knowledge to perform certain tasks in their job, it comes at a pretty hefty expense on behalf of the employee. College tuition costs are at an all-time high, and today’s students are graduating with more debt than any other generation before them.

One way to attract and retain top talent is by offering student loan assistance. And for recent grads swimming in mounds of student loan debt, finding an employer who offers student loan assistance can be extremely beneficial finance-wise.

With the coronavirus stifling the economy, many employees with student loan debt are finding themselves struggling to get by. While interest and payments have been halted on federal student loans, those with private student loans might still be required to make their monthly payments. Workers need assistance, and they need it now, so offering some sort of monetary aid will go a long way. Even better, the one-time stimulus bill includes tax benefits for employers who offer student loan debt assistance, meaning you can save a significant amount of money on your taxes when Uncle Sam comes knocking at your door.

Wrapping up

We’re still in the midst of an unprecedented global pandemic, which has had crippling effects on the economy and workers around the world. While businesses have had their own fair share of challenges during these times, one way to bounce back and recover is ensuring employees’ needs are met.

Employees who feel valued by their employers are often more productive and have higher levels of satisfaction, which means taking care of these needs is a win-win for both parties. These three post-COVID benefits are just some of the benefits you can expect from your next employer. While this list is non-exhaustive, it serves as a good starting point for what to expect from an employer.

Samantha Rupp holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. She is the managing editor for 365 Business Tips as well as runs a personal blog, Mixed Bits Media. She lives in San Diego, California and enjoys spending time on the beach, reading up on current industry trends, and traveling.

 

7 Skills to Acquire During Quarantine That Can Boost Your Resume

Career & WorkplaceGuest Posts

If you’re one of the millions of Americans who’s been under some level of COVID-19 quarantine restrictions over the last several months, you’re probably starting to feel a little restless these days. You’ve organized the garage, participated in virtual happy hours, and run out of stuff to stream — now what?

Whether you’re on the job hunt after becoming unemployed or you’re just on a mission to find something bigger and better, you’re in the right place! In this post, we’ll show you some ways to resolve both your boredom and ramp up your resume during quarantine. From certificates to skills, read on to find out the top seven things you can do to boost your resume without ever leaving your couch!

  1. Web Design and Management

When employers think about the qualities of a good employee, the words “driven,” “self-motivated,” and “passionate” often come to mind. So, what better way to impress a potential employer than by showing off some self-taught skills? With a little help, of course…

In the digital age, experience with web design and management is an invaluable skill worth reaching for. And thanks to the same technology, it’s easier than ever to learn how to build, design, and launch a website at your own, self-guided pace. What’s more, your practice site can become your very own living portfolio where you can host your resume, work samples, contact details, social media links, and more.

Here are some of the top-rated online web design courses and platforms to choose from:

  • Webflow University
  • UDemy
  • SkillShare
  • Coursera

If you want to build from templates rather than code your way from the ground up, you might check out user-friendly platforms like Squarespace, WordPress, and Wix.

  1. Visual Design

If you’re looking for a career in the creative realm, a great way to boost your skills is to get hands-on with design. Photo editing, illustrating, and designing page layouts are just a few of the things you can learn using the Adobe Suite program.

  1. Language

Knowing how to read, write, and speak in another language is always a great skill to have, no matter what kind of work you do. In fact, many workplaces will pay employees more if they know a second language, especially if it’s a language commonly used in the region.

What’s more, learning a foreign language opens the door for more travel opportunities and could even present the option for you to work abroad if you’re interested.

Thanks to the convenience of mobile apps and increasingly easy user interface, learning a new language while you’re on-the-go or at home is fun and easy to do. Check out these popular apps to get started:

  • Duolingo
  • Babbel
  • Busuu
  • Memrise
  • HelloTalk

 ProTip: As you start to learn the foundations of a foreign language, you can start to expand your learning tools by watching foreign films or television shows, cooking from foreign cookbooks, or reading books in a new language. If you’ve been looking for ways to stay entertained during quarantine, learning a language is one of the best (and most productive) things you can do!

  1. Social Media Management

It’s no secret that social media practically runs the world as we know it these days. From Instagram and Snapchat to TikTok, Twitter, and Facebook, there’s a social network out there for everyone; there are even social networks for career seekers. Heck, you might even be a member of all of the above!

Whether you’re in the marketing and communications world or just have a passion for social media, there are plenty of ways you can leverage your social skills in the workplace. Learning how to craft custom content, engage with users, and monitor performance can open the door for new job responsibilities and give your resume the added edge it needs to make it into the final round.

The best part? There are tons of free resources out there to help you get started:

  • For video storytelling, check out Social Creators
  • For social media and digital marketing in general, try Acadium
  • For help with Facebook ads, visit Facebook Blueprint
  • To learn more about ad performance, use Google Analytics Academy
  • To learn the foundations of content marketing, check out Hubspot Academy
  • For information on scheduling content and increasing engagement, try Hootsuite Academy
  1. UX/UI

UX, or user experience, applies to a lot of different industries and professions, including web design, software development, and product design. In essence, UX is the practice of improving a user’s experience with a product, whether that means button placement or page hierarchy on a website, the functionality or packaging of a product, or some other aspect that alters how a customer interacts with a product.

Interested in UX or UI? Check out these resources:

  • DesignLab
  • Xterra
  • Career Foundry
  • Interaction Design
  1. Public Speaking

Almost nobody likes to do it, but nearly every employer is looking for someone who’s good at it. That’s right, we’re talking about public speaking. No matter what field you’re working in, chances are, there is some element of public speaking necessary in one way or another, whether that’s through in-house presentations, project proposals, PR, or just team collaboration.

If you’re not ready to jump up in front of a classroom of people, learning the foundations of public speaking online may be your best bet! Coursera, Forbes, Udemy, and LinkedIn Learning all offer virtual courses in public speaking.

 Bonus: Not only will public speaking skills set you up for success within a workplace environment, it can also help you gain the confidence and knack to nail your next interview.

Wrapping Up

While life in quarantine seems to only drag on as the months move by, there are plenty of productive things you can do with your time. By working to build your professional skills online, you can ramp up your resume, increase your value as a professional, and keep yourself occupied and engaged.

Feel free to use these seven tips and resources as a guide to get you started, and don’t forget to share your experience in the comment section!

Sophie Sirois is a writer based in San Diego, CA, currently writing content for 365businesstips.com. With her Bachelors of Art in Strategic Communication behind her, Sophie began working in the content marketing sphere and has been crafting unique, informative, and click-worthy content ever since.

Is There Really Ageism in the Workplace?

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If you are a 50+-year-old worker, you have probably experienced some ageism at work. Whether you have been passed over for a promotion, perceived as someone who isn’t current on the latest trends, or not included in the water cooler discussions, negative perceptions about seniors are common.

But how do you know which are true and which are assumptions? If you want to address them, you need to know what people actually think. ResumeLab polled 900+ Americans to find out just how ageist we are. You can look at the complete results on their website, along with the graphic showing the highlights. Here is what they found:

Though about 50% think older workers are resistant to change and are less healthy, independent studies actually show this is FALSE.

People (45%) think older workers aren’t interested in additional training or career development. This actually TRUE.

Younger workers think older workers look down on them, 41%. Not enough evidence to support either way.

About 40% think older workers are more expensive to train or retrain. Primarily TRUE.

With this information, if you are an older worker, it is imperative that your resume dispels these stereotypes. You must communicate your ability to be current, up on the latest trends, a life-long learner, and willing to mentor others.

Older Workers Study

 

ResumeLab is a resume advice site with over 250 detailed guides. See our experts featured in Business News Daily & TechRepublic, Inc.

 

Workplace 2020 – The Year of the “Hybrid” Working Environment

Career & WorkplaceWork/Family Balance

While many Americans started 2020 commuting to their jobs, the onset of a global pandemic quickly showed just as many that their jobs can be done from remote locations. As “stay-at-home” orders shut down state after state, extending a short-term change in the workplace environment from on-site to virtual, a lot of companies have realized that there may be some benefits to not having their employees return to the corporate office full-time. As the new “hybrid” working environment is making itself more popular, it’s very clear that there is an adjustment period for the company, the employees, and their families.

“Working from home” has long been a term associated with parents who want to stay home with their kids and make a little side money.  However, this virtual working concept was already gaining popularity in the past few years as technology applications were created to help companies connect across the global, cutting down on travel, and ultimately costs. While workplaces were starting to see the benefits of having their workers move to a remote environment, most were not prepared to have to do so immediately in 2020-and it has been a rough adjustment for many. Now that states are opening back up, some organizations are starting a “hybrid” workplace concept, meaning they are having their employees work from home, and at the office.

We have talked to some of our colleagues and corporate clients about the ups and downs of switching to a remote/hybrid working environment, and asked them to share their personal insight as to how to navigate the obstacles and challenges, as well as the perks of having a home office for the first time.  Here are some of their tips to help make your new “workplace” as productive and normal as your former office was.

  • Establish your workspace in your home. Try to find a room separate from living, dining, or sleeping spaces so that you truly feel like you are in an office setting. Make sure your modem and router are both up to speed and that your wireless connection is strong enough for your occupational needs in your new office space. If you are lucky enough to have a door to your workspace, make sure your family members or roommates know that when the door is shut, you are not to be disturbed.
  • Know your virtual communication applications. What programs will your company be using for team meetings and communications? Zoom? Webex? Find out what you will be using the most for teleconferencing and give yourself a quick tutorial so you don’t miss out on important information and events.
  • Stay organized. If you are an employee that is having to learn the “hybrid” concept for the first time, organization will be key. Find a way to keep important files and notes electronically in a shared drive or database so that you are not constantly moving piles of papers to and from your work environments. Have everything on your laptop ready to go so that wherever you have to be logistically, you still have access to everything you need for meetings.
  • Create a schedule. There will be times when you are going to be required to be in the office for in-person meetings. Work with your supervisors and colleagues to find common days and times to be in the office, when necessary.  As the whole purpose of social distancing is to limit contact, be sure that you are only including the people who absolutely need to be sitting in the conference room and any others can be brought in from their remote locations.
  • Plan for changes in your salary/benefits. If a car allowance is part of your monthly income, you need to be prepared that the amount you’re currently getting may be reduced or eliminated altogether. I mean, you’re not driving to work full-time anymore, so why should the company be compensating for you to do so? As our economy has taken a huge hit due to the global pandemic, more and more companies will be doing anything they can to cut costs to make up for their financial losses. Headcount and benefits are usually the top costs in many organizations, so these will be the first areas to see cuts.
  • Be prepared for the future. If your company doesn’t need you to come into the office on a full-time, they may also realize that they don’t need you to work full-time anymore. Then, eventually you may not even be needed part-time. Meaning…you just got laid off…permanently. Start planning now for a potential job change..today. Reduce your spending and find ways to stockpile some cash, should you find yourself unemployed. Update your resume and LinkedIn profile so you are ready to hit the ground running if you need to start looking for a new job. Network amongst your peer group, family members, and colleagues to see what is out there in your industry and beyond. While some companies are going under, there are just as many thriving and adding to their workforce.

As we continue to try to live and work during these “uncertain times” caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, being prepared for the unknown will be key to surviving. The new “hybrid” work environment concept that has been a direct result of what’s going on in the world will be a win for some and a huge loss for others. Hopefully these tips will help to ensure that you are one of the “winners” in 2020.

 

11 Ways to Improve a Healthy Work-Life Balance

Career & WorkplaceGuest Posts

Are you getting overwhelmed by workplace stress and the pressure of family and friends? A positive work-life balance can help you create more time for your work and other things in your life. The busier you get, the harder it is for you to prioritize between your work and personal life. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is essential because it improves your overall health and relationships. It also enhances your productivity and attitude toward new work-life challenges.

Despite the pressure to have it all, it is not easy to achieve and maintain a healthy work-life balance. Here are 11 ways to make that improvement.

Employee attendance tracking for a healthy work-life balance

It is a good idea to avoid conflict at work. Fortunately, there are tools and effective work-life management strategies that allow you to reduce the effects of stress. Likewise, these tools can be used to strengthen the workforce in your organization, which will boost the productivity of your employees.

One of the benefits of using employee attendance tracking is that it allows the manager to embrace remote working. Attendance tracking apps have a remote clocking feature that allows your employees to be accountable without restrictions. Besides, these attendance tracking tools can help your team become more productive and improve morale. By reducing the time it takes to wait for vacation and time-off approval, employees become productive, and the work environment becomes happier.

By far, one of the most critical benefits of attendance tracking is the ability to identify goals and objectives by reviewing imbalances in hours worked. The big picture in this insight is the identification of payroll savings and better decision-making. Both are important because they allow the manager to identify and act on the activities that are eroding the company’s culture.

How to Improve a Work-Life Balance?

Unfortunately, many people don’t place enough importance on their mental health. The importance of maintaining a healthy work-life balance is prevalent at a time when studies show that stress-related illnesses and depression are on the rise. Money can create happiness some times, but spending all your time working pushes you further from happiness. Here are 11 tips to help you improve work-life balance.

  1. Meet the needs of your employees

Employees are the lifeblood of any organization. So if you are not meeting their needs, then you are bound to increase your work-related stress. Here are tips for fostering better mental and physical health of your team:

  • Provide child care perks
  • Ensure your employees take paid leave
  • Survey balance-related factors
  1. Educate your staff

Unfortunately, small business doesn’t spend as much to educate their employees on better work-life balance as large organizations. For a business to succeed, the employees have to maintain a healthy work-life balance. Offer seminars on how work-life balance is important and how to achieve it.

  1. Lookout for employee well-being

If you want to improve work-life balance in your organization, look out for employee well-being through social support. That’s a sound business decision, and companies around the world are acknowledging it. Why? The reason is that employee well-being is linked to engagement and productivity.

  1. Make working hours flexible

Herein, employees have scheduling freedom that allows them to fulfill the obligations of their positions on their own time. Flexibility has countless benefits to organizations, and a lot of companies are taking note. This is an excellent way to encourage work-life balance outside the office environment.

  1. Embrace remote working

Your employees don’t need to dress in company attire and commute through traffic to work to stay productive. There are a lot of benefits of remote working to businesses. Most importantly, the employees are more productive and maintain a healthy work-life balance.

  1. Promote quality over quantity

As a business manager, you should encourage your employees to work efficiently instead of doing more work. Doing more work and working smart are not the same. Besides, doing a lot of work damages the morale of the employees.

  1. Bring them home to work

Maintaining a healthy balance between your work and personal life is no easy task. That’s why many organizations encourage employees to carry their work home. This approach allows the employee to spend more time with their family, which also makes them happier.

  1. Encourage employees to practice healthy living

It is no secret that employees are the best asset an organization holds. Hence, placing a deeper emphasis on employee wellness can encourage engagement in the workplace and improve productivity. Also, an integral aspect of promoting a healthier work-life balance is healthy living.

  1. Prioritize financial education

Financial stress can have a deep impact on employees’ performance away from home. As such, improving the financial literacy of your employees can have far-reaching implications in your company’s success.

  1. Promote creativity

Encouraging your employees to be more creative can spur innovation within your organization. Therefore, promoting a healthy work-life balance through creativity can lead to an actively engaged workforce.

  1. Lead by example

Even when you tell your employees that you encourage healthier living, that doesn’t mean they’ll follow everything you say. You have to lead by example if you want to connect with your staff. If your employees see that you value healthier foods over other junk options, they will prioritize theirs.

Bottom line

There are a lot of ways to separate your personal and professional lives without having them encroach on each other. Which one are you looking forward to implementing most?

Author’s BIO: Lori Wade is a journalist from Louisville. She is a content writer who has experience in small editions. Lori is now engaged in news and conceptual articles on the topic of business. If you are interested in an entrepreneur or lifestyle, you can find her on Twitter & LinkedIn. She has good experience and knowledge in the field. 

Leadership Tools for Executives Seeking New Opportunities

Career & Workplace

 

Taking on a new leadership opportunity can come with undue stress surrounding the demands and qualifications of the role. Familiarizing yourself with the common tools executives use to operate at their full potential can make a major difference in your confidence entering the new position. Use the strategies listed below to give yourself a head start on your new career step and get you ready to be the best leader you can be!

 Strategic Thinking and Decision-Making

Every individual has a different skill set and expertise that makes them fit-to-hire within given leadership roles. Leadership responsibilities can be some of the most demanding, and can require the right kind of professional characteristics and skills to reap beneficial results. It calls for prompt and accurate decision-making and strategic thinking to devise the right solutions for issues that may arise internally and externally, as well as the ability to be innovative and find creative solutions to complex problems. Supporting innovation amongst employees and team members is also crucial to gain a wide set of perspectives and expertise, and resolve issues that depend on broader or more focused thinking.

Strategic thinking is another attribute that allows for the design of forecasting and prevention methods that combat possible challenges. It can be used by leaders to address internal team changes, concerns, advancement opportunities, and to instill proper conflict management and resolution strategies. Strategic thinking also applies to external factors by helping to monitor competitors entering the market and determining the best course of action internally to address new demands and differentiating factors. This can lead to more forward-thinking production planning to remain relevant and on top of changing trends to be a market leader.

To determine whether or not you are a strategic thinker, review these qualifying characteristics:

  • Strategic leaders do not try to fit the mold. They think outside the box, even if it is unpopular to do so, to take calculated risks.
  • They learn from their experiences to implement tried and true improvements and prevention methods that could yield better results.
  • They push themselves and their teams to accept new challenges. They believe in their team, having full confidence that their efforts will lead them to success.
  • They keep a positive attitude, seek opportunities, and seize them. They do not let fear of failure dictate their actions, but instead, push past comfort zones to seek better results.
  • Strategic thinking leaders are forward-thinking influencers. They influence decision-making and set a purpose-driven example by driving team members to trust the process, and believe in what their leaders are striving toward.

 Management Strategies and Tools

Technology is making waves in modern business, demanding new leaders to familiarize themselves with the right tools that get the job done. The main role of tech-based tools in leadership is to keep projects and strategies organized and easily accessible. They also provide data collection to further streamline leadership decision-making and forecast future trends that could impact the internal operations.

Managing financials is one of the major responsibilities bestowed upon leaders, so having the right organizational tools to manage financial information is key to accurate project planning, payroll, and budgeting. Management tools like ERP systems include modules that cover all major aspects of financial management. Familiarize yourself with these tools taking the business world by storm to bring in a fresh perspective on ways to properly utilize its features to improve operational productivity, better outline future project plans and forecast possible budget constraints.  CRM software can also be used for external operations to ensure that all client relationships stay organized and production meets their demands to remain competitive in your company’s given market.

Managing tools do not always consist of tech-based software, but can focus on team building strategies as well. Research varying ways of engaging employees to learn their individual strengths and weaknesses and adjust your leadership approach accordingly. For example, introverted employees may prefer more authoritative leadership, while more independent team members may prefer the opportunity to engage in knowledge and power-sharing methods. With this knowledge, you can build a more effective team and connect with employees on both personal and professional levels to build trust. Be sure to be genuine, open, well-informed, and accessible to team members, and share your credentials to instill their confidence in your direction. Be goal driven to find purpose in everyday work and influence your team to seek shared goals by acting as a coach. Do not assume you have all the answers, and take employee input and ideas into consideration. Studies show that engaged employees are 87% less likely to leave an organization.  Modern leaders are transforming traditional leadership by supporting collaborative, authentic, and creative work environments where professionals can flourish and share their expertise on a fair and even playing field.

 Training and Team Building

Proper leadership training will most likely take place post-hiring, but it is still good practice to review the training materials and process prior to acceptance of the role. Begin by learning core leadership practices and processes, and understand the different leadership styles  to determine which you identify with most. These styles consist of:

  • Autocratic Leaders…create clear strategies and expectations and perform decision-making processes on their own. These leaders are prone to micromanaging, and this style is the least desirable.
  • Delegative Leaders…allow teams to make decisions together with a collaborative style.
  • Participative Leaders…balance between the first two styles of leadership. They provide guidance and set standards for their teams, but take into account ideas, feedback, and input from team members in decision-making processes.

Having a grasp on ways to train prospective team members is important. Recognizing each individual’s specific skills and strengths will help you delegate  tasks accordingly and can result in higher levels of efficiency and productivity. If a team member wants to broaden their skills in order to take on new challenges, determine a comprehensive training program that offers both in-person and online courses that are accessible and can be completed in a timely manner to get your team up and running as promptly as possible. A communication strategy also helps with training initiatives by opening the flow of information from team members to leaders, and supplies transparent feedback and insight into training offerings to implement improvements in problem areas. Clear communication also creates channels to review goals and timelines to ensure the team is up-to-date on current deadlines and processes.

Building motivation amongst team members requires realistic goal setting and recognition of both small and large achievements. By outlining a goal- orientated strategy, team members are able to envision their role in making impactful decisions and innovative thinking to develop calculated action that brings the team closer to its common goal. As a leader, you need to set an example and remain transparent about expectations and team or process changes. Team building activities are a great way to keep all team members informed of these changes, and allows for recognition to be shared regarding milestones and accomplishments. 35% of professionals surveyed in a recent study found that gratitude and recognition boosted their overall productivity. Fostering positive morale and motivation helps keep you and your team members happy, productive, and moving forward toward common goals.

 The Future of Leadership

Keeping a weathered eye on the leadership horizon before applying to a new role is key to understanding where leadership techniques are headed and if your skill set and personal attributes align with future demands. With the adoption of automated tools, artificial intelligence, and emerging technologies changing the game, the pace and rate of change is increasing. This can easily become  overwhelming when trying to evolve a strategy and team to meet or surpass these demands. Team skills and expertise will need to reach higher standards and be tech-driven. The need for technology knowledge is key to growth and steady positive performance. Overarching goals and objectives are based on these future trends and market demands, so perform in-depth research on up-and-coming leadership tools that may be seeing a digital transformation in coming years. Boost your own skills to remain competitive amongst other candidates and prepare yourself for being a leader in a tech-driven world.