These Four Tips Will Help You Get Your Friend a Job

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Referring a friend to a new job may sound easy enough, but some referrals are more effective than others. Sure, you could just forward a resume and maybe include a nice note endorsing your friend, but what else can you do to give your friend the best shot at getting the job? These four steps will help you to help your friend, and if you’re looking for work yourself, consider forwarding this to friends who want to help you! Continue reading “These Four Tips Will Help You Get Your Friend a Job”

How to Nail “The Hello” and Get the Job

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Want to know the secret to getting a leg up on your competition during a job interview? It’s all about how you handle the initial meeting with the hiring manager, also known as “The Hello.” Studies have shown that everything from the handshake to the smile of the initial hello shapes the way that hiring managers think of candidates during the interview. Here is the advice you need to nail “The Hello” and get your interview off in the right direction: Continue reading “How to Nail “The Hello” and Get the Job”

Why Thanksgiving Weekend Is Prime Time For Your Job Search

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Thanksgiving weekend is not the time to completely check out of your job search. It fact, in between football, shopping, and having thirds of pumpkin pie, you should carve some time to take advantage of some of the opportunities that are unique to the weekend. Here are three reasons Thanksgiving weekend is stuffed full of great opportunities for your job search: Continue reading “Why Thanksgiving Weekend Is Prime Time For Your Job Search”

Four Insider Tips On How To Maintain Your Mentor Relationship

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When someone agrees to be your mentor, they are excited to use their experience and expertise to help you progress through your career. They believe in you and are willing to put in the time to help you succeed. Because you want to keep the mentor/mentee relationship as mutually beneficial as possible, it is important that you take steps to maintain your relationship. Here are four items that you should do to help keep the relationship fresh and running smoothly.

Align Your Goals with Your Mentor’s Abilities So You Know Where to Focus

Because of the limited time you’ll have with  your mentor each week/monthly, focus on how they can best help you. No mentor can meet all of your needs, so go back to why you wanted them as a mentor and how their knowledge and experience aligns with your goals. Create a plan for what you’re hoping to accomplish so you can shape the relationship towards those objectives.

Work with Your Mentor to Articulate Goals You Are Looking To Accomplish

Once you have your initial plan, schedule a meeting or phone call with your mentor to discuss what you’re hoping to accomplish. There should be a lot of give and take in this initial meeting. You’ve come with a plan, but you don’t know what you don’t know, and the reality is that no plan is set in stone. Every relationship will go in unexpected directions and that can be a good thing, so stay flexible and roll with it. Coming out of this meeting you will ideally have a set of long and short term goals and a rough timeframe for working on them.

Establish Norms

Most professionals have very full calendars, so in the same goals meeting, you need to establish how you can best communicate with your mentor and how they would prefer to work with you. Some may just want to meet in person once a month, while exchanging e-mails as needed, while others may want to have a 15 minute phone call on Saturday morning to talk about your progress. This schedule will also establish what their expectations are in terms of communication. Some mentors might want you to call or e-mail them whenever you have a question, while others may want to keep any questions until specific meeting times.

Show Your Appreciation

Most mentors will be working with you out of a genuine desire to be helpful. This means that one of the best ways to thank your mentor is to make sure they understand how and to what extent they are actually helping you. Share what you’ve learned. Share the impact they have had on your life. Share your wins. And, don’t forget the little things. A classic thank you card can do wonders, and so can a simple thank you at the end of each meeting. They may not be looking for praise and appreciation, but they will still like to hear it.

3 Things You Must Say To Someone You Want To Be Your Mentor

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People who have climbed the corporate ladder understand the value of having a mentor, and are usually willing to help young professionals gain the upper hand in their career. While most people are open to the idea of being a mentor, you want to ask them in the right way. Here are three important things to say to someone who you want to be your mentor.

“I’ve admired your career path, and it is something that I would like to emulate.”

Even if a potential mentor knows you well, it’s still important to let them know why you want their mentorship. When asking them, give reasons why you think they would make a great mentor, and what in their career path you want to emulate. This isn’t just important in terms of giving them a reason to accept your request, but it also lets them know what you are looking to get from them long-term. You don’t need to go into too much detail, but give them reasons to say yes.

“I am looking for advice and guidance, if I have a question is it ok if I reach out to you for a brief 10 minute conversation, at your convenience?”

It’s safe to assume that your potential mentor is very busy. Whether they are still working or retired, taking on a protégé means that they have to devote time to you and your questions. It’s not that they don’t want to do it; it’s a matter of whether they have the time. With this in mind, explain that you will look for advice at their convenience. Maybe that means a 10-minute phone call on a Friday morning, or a quick text or email. Let them know that you are working on their schedule and that you don’t expect them to drop everything to answer a question. Even if your potential mentor seems eager to help, remind them that this won’t take much of their time.

 “Thank you very much.”

It is important that your potential mentor knows how appreciative you are of their time. While they may like the idea of mentoring someone rising through the ranks, they are also investing their time, so reminding them that you appreciate what they are doing is important. Mentors aren’t looking for gifts or accolades; a simple “thank you” will do wonders.

Why You Need a Mentor (and how to find one)

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Everyone needs a little help climbing the career ladder, which is why having the right mentor so important. No matter where you are in your career, having someone to give you advice is always a welcome thing. A mentor won’t just help you weigh the pros and cons of big career moves, they can advise you on the little things that matter on your path.

Who Makes A Good Mentor?

You are looking to your mentor to help you become more successful, so it stands to reason that you should look for people who have already achieved success themselves. The mentor/protégé relationship is built on great communication, so your mentor should be somebody with whom you can communicate easily. Your mentor should be somebody who will listen to you so that they can fully hear and understand your goals and challenges so the advice they dispense is relevant. It can also help to find somebody with similar values, so think about what’s important to you and find people who have demonstrated that is important to them as well. Most important, your mentor must be somebody who wants to help. They will be investing time into your success, and so you need to find somebody who cares about you enough to make that investment.

Finding Mentors within Your Current Company

There are likely people at your own company that you admire and respect, and whether it’s a manager, a higher-up in another department, or even the company owner, they are typically happy to dispense advice. Even if you never gave them the tag of “mentor,” they may already be guiding you on your career path. The great thing about having a mentor at your office is that they work with you regularly, so they have experience with your strength and weaknesses. They also know the company and can give you actionable advice on how to move up the ladder. While they  may not be the right person to talk to if you are looking to make a move outside of the company, when it comes to getting the most out of your current job, they can be a great asset. It’s also worth noting that many companies have a formal mentorship program, meaning that they can set you up with a senior employee within the company who can help guide you.

When Looking Outside Of The Company, Consider Your Options

Social media sites like LinkedIn are great for finding mentors. If you have a connection in mind that you would like to talk to about your career path, all you have to do is send them a brief message asking for their input. While some may be too busy to become a full-time mentor, many will be happy to expand the conversation to e-mail or phone. Networking groups are also great places to find mentors, as are conferences and career seminars. Hiring Advisors from staffing companies like AppleOne can also be a great source of mentorship, as they are experts at guiding people on their career path on a daily basis. Remember, it’s fine to have multiple mentors, especially if they can give you different experiences to pull from.

Look for the next article in our series on how to approach a mentor and develop the relationship.

What Your Dating Style Says About Your Professional Persona

Whether or not we admit it, we all have habits that follow us through our romantic endeavors. Some of us have a “type,” while others’ relationships always seem to fall apart for the same reasons. While these coupling patterns don’t always serve us in our search for “The One,” they can be surprisingly useful in our search for “The Job.” Which dater-turned-jobseeker are you? Continue reading “What Your Dating Style Says About Your Professional Persona”

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