Monday, July 21, 2014

Career Building: 3 Things to Do This Week:
Find a Good Boss During Your Next Job Search

Figuring out if a potential boss's management style jives with
your working style is important, and with these tips from
experts, just might be doable before you begin the job.
If you are in the middle of your career and thinking about finding a new job, this week’s tips are for you. For this job search, you are no longer looking for your first job, the job that gets your professional life started, the one that provides money for your car payment. This time, you are looking for a job that will let you give back to your profession.

You have read the job descriptions, tailored your cover letter, and sweated over whether you feel like the perfect candidate for them. This time, take a little time to ensure the relationship is more mutual. That the job you are interviewing for is the right job for you—not just the job you think is right for you based on what you read on paper. Below are three things to consider when you search:

Will this boss help your career?

The Muse challenges you to ask about management style and to check out the boss when you interview. Career coach Michael Seaver recommends straight-up choosing a boss instead of the job. He writes, “By focusing on who your boss will be above most other criteria (e.g. total compensation, responsibility, advancement opportunities, location) changes how you pursue jobs and how happy you’ll be once you select one.”

Ask a potential boss questions.

For this search, you not trying to get your foot in the door as much as you are looking for a place where you can do good work. You already established your career. This time when you interview, prepare your own list of criteria for evaluating an office and its manger. Ask a potential boss about their professional background and to take in the office d├ęcor.

Conduct your own "reference-check" 

In some situations, David Reese recommends checking references of managers. He admits this might be appropriate for only senior management, but conducting a stealth reference check might also work. Do you know anyone who is or has worked for this manager? The idea of trying to figure out whether you will have chemistry with a future manager is an important one, especially if this job search is not just a job-changer, but a career-changer.

Managers are looking for people who will help achieve their goals. You want to find a job where helping a manager will also help you boost your career, too.


Tuesday, July 08, 2014

New office supplies for summer: yoobi!

Target is now selling yoobi school supplies, vibrant fun colors that are perfect for summer and for stating college this fall.



Yoobi means “one for you, one for me.”

For every item purchased, one item will be donated to a U.S. classroom in need.


I’m not sure exactly what a classroom needs with a fuzzy pencil case...


...but who can resist?

I picked up some things for my cousin who is starting college in the fall. These puzzle pieces include push pins, paper clips, and binder clips:


I have been using these notebooks this summer for my research notes:


This colorful supply kit is perfect for a backpack:



Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Lawyers are Scary (Not Really):
Why We Don't Like to Hire Them

"Environmental Law Practice Guide"
Books like these take all the fun out of feeling good
about simply recycling. Creative-commons licensed photo
by flickr.com user umjanedoan.
I used to work for lawyers. During my last job search in the legal profession, I had a third interview for a job I semi-wanted. An attorney that I knew wanted to hire the other candidate asked me, "We sometimes get stressed and yell. How do you handle that?" I replied honestly, "I usually yell back." I didn't get the job, but it wasn't a surprise. Like I said, the recruiter already told me this particular attorney disliked me. Five years before, that knowledge would have been devastating. At the time, I was at a career crossroads, and interviewing for this job was one piece in finding my path.

The only reason I had enough nerve to honestly say that I would yell back was that I worked on a case a few years before with an attorney in NYC who said, "I need to let you know that as things get going, I sometimes yell." He went on to say something about it being a bad habit brought on by stress. I shrugged it off and said, "Then I guess you need to know that I sometimes yell back." The attorney chortled and we got along great. I remember nothing about the case except that conversation.

I gained a lot of confidence working for lawyers, so I understand their work.

The truth is that people do not like to hire lawyers or doctors. The main reason is that the billing is ambiguous and expensive. Soon I’ll tackle a work-around for the ambiguous billing issue, but this post is going to focus on the other reasons people do not like to hire lawyers.

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