career tips

[caption id="attachment_18626" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="What impact will Brexit have on the UK job market?"] [/caption] Many are wondering what the impact of Brexit will be on the UK job market. Here's what we understand: EU citizens in UK The Office of National Statistics has revealed that the number of EU citizens migrating to the UK for work has fallen to its lowest level in four years. Equally, record numbers of EU citizens are leaving or plan to leave the UK ahead the Brexit date of 29 March 2019. This has led to disruption in the labour market with employers struggling to retain and replace ‘Brexiting’ staff. The industries which appear to have been most affected are engineering, IT, hospitality and the health & social care sectors. Skills shortages While the Brexit camp may argue this presents a great opportunity for UK citizens to step into these roles, the reality is a little different. The...

[caption id="attachment_18425" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Hiding won't help!"][/caption] The biggest fear interviewees have not having the ‘right’ answers. The best way to overcome this is to consider the kinds of questions your interviewers are likely to ask and to think about how you will respond. Let’s look at some typical interview questions that leave interviewers shifting uncomfortably in their seats and how best to answer them. What do you know about us and what we do? Many hiring managers cite this as one of the most critical questions asked when interviewing candidates. One manging director went so far as to say that if a candidate was unable to answer this question appropriately it was a deal breaker. No matter how well they performed throughout the rest of the interview, they would not be hired. What is the right approach to responding to this question? Firstly, you will need to have done your homework by spending...

[caption id="attachment_18417" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Making LinkedIn your own is easy"] [/caption] When you first set up your LinkedIn account, you are allocated a randomly selected URL consisting of your name followed by a bunch of numbers. This not only makes your URL long, it is difficult to share with others and looks unprofessional. Since most employers will review your LinkedIn profile as part of the hiring process, it’s vital you do everything you can to ensure your profile shines. Customising your LinkedIn profile URL is a simple and quick way to shows: You’re a professional Have good attention to detail You care about making a good impression Another reason why you should customise your LinkedIn profile is that it makes you easier to find which is particularly important if you have a common name. Customising your LinkedIn URL can make the difference between coming up in the first page of search results for your name rather...

[caption id="attachment_18503" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="A satisfying life with more than one job"] [/caption] Our fast-paced lifestyles, quest for work-life balance and economic uncertainty has led many of us seeking alternatives to traditional ways of working. For a growing number of people, the answer has been to adopt a portfolio career. What is a portfolio career? A portfolio career is the term used to describe how rather than having a single job, you can develop a portfolio of different jobs to meet your personal, career and financial goals. A portfolio career can be made up of part or full-time employment, casual work, contract work, freelancing or running your own business. The number of jobs you have is up to you. Your portfolio career could be made up of two or more roles carrying out similar types of work, or pursuing activities in different sectors and roles. Portfolio working allows you to tap into your skills, attributes and experience in...

[caption id="attachment_18523" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Do you have an elevator pitch ready for when the opportunity arises?"] [/caption] What is an elevator pitch? The term elevator pitch evolved as a way to describe a 30 second spiel about who you are, what you have to offer and why someone should hire you. The premise is that if you were ever lucky enough to share a 30 second elevator ride with someone with the potential to hire you, you could confidently describe why they should. How do I create a good elevator pitch? By far the easiest and most effective way to create your own elevator pitch is to first identify your unique selling points. Try brainstorming on a sheet of paper or digitally if you prefer. Identify all those things that describe your skills, abilities, experience, interests, passions etc. Think about your accomplishments and include these in your pitch to really make you stand out. Have...

[caption id="attachment_18573" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Have you updated your profile lately?"] [/caption] How long has it been since you updated your LinkedIn profile? If your answer is months or years (shame on you), now is the time to turn the spotlight on your LinkedIn profile and give it the shiny New Year’s makeover it deserves. Here are ten ways to make sure your LinkedIn profile stands out from the crowd: 1. ADD A RECENT PHOTO If your LinkedIn profile photo is more than 2 years old, it is out of date. Make sure your photo is not one of you out on the town holding a wineglass, but one that portrays you as the professional you really are. 2. MAKE YOUR PROFESSIONAL HEADLINE WORK FOR YOU Although your entire profile should be keyword-rich, making your Personal Headline as keyword-rich as possible will go a long way towards getting noticed. When someone searches for someone using key words...

[caption id="attachment_18593" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="You have less than 8 seconds to create a good first impression"] [/caption] You might already be aware that you have less than 8 seconds to create a good first impression during a job interview. What you might not know is how to create a good first impression and be remembered a smartly dressed, well-presented professional. The Basics Avoid eating strongly flavoured foods before your interview. This is particularly important if your interview is scheduled after lunchtime. Stick with a simple sandwich or salad minus garlicky spreads or dressings. Be sure to check your teeth before the interview, that you have no food or lipstick stuck to them. Hair should be freshly washed and neatly styled. If you're a woman you might find wearing your hair in an up-style more manageable with the added benefit of removing the temptation of fussing with it before or during the interview. Women should stick...

[caption id="attachment_18628" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Even in tough times you can advance your career"] [/caption] You might think tough economic times mean that any plans for advancing your career are on hold. In fact, the current economic climate provides an ideal opportunity for you to take advantage of the situation. Here are some ideas to help you advance your career: Gain new skills We have all heard the countless stories about dwindling numbers of workers and the increased workloads within organisations. If you find yourself in this situation, rather than seeing it as an overwhelming threat, try looking at the opportunities the situation presents. Taking on extra duties could enable you to develop new skills which will make you more marketable or provide leverage to ask for a pay rise and higher status. Grasp any opportunities that arise to job shadow or receive on-the-job training and mentoring from other staff members. Be on the lookout...

[caption id="attachment_18631" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Tips for the best cover letter"] [/caption] Many job seekers struggle when writing a cover letter. Here's my top ten cover letter writing tips to help guide the process. Your cover letter should be in a standard business format. Don’t use borders or fancy fonts, stick with a standard business font such as Arial or Times New Roman; Include your name, address, telephone numbers and email at the top of the letter; Address the letter to a specific person if possible paying special attention to make sure you use the correct spelling of their name; Include any position reference numbers and the position title; If responding to a job advertisement, use it as a guide to help you write your cover letter being sure to give examples of how you fit the requirements mentioned in the advertisement; Try and keep your cover letter to one page in length. Use plain English and...

[caption id="attachment_18655" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The right questions to ask are important"] [/caption] If you struggle when asked if you have any questions for the interviewer/s at the end of a job interview you're not alone. Many of us struggle to come up with intelligent and relevant questions at this most critical time. At the end of most job interviews, it’s likely you’ll be asked something like “Do you have any questions for us?” The wrong answer is: “No, I think you’ve covered everything.” The right answer is to ask relevant questions that demonstrate your genuine interest in the position. You can ask questions that relate to the company, the team or the role itself. Here are some examples of questions to ask at a job interview: Questions about the company [to help you learn more about the company including staff turnover, work environment/culture, challenges and future plans] How long have you worked for the company? What...