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  • The Career Decoder Quiz unlocks your professional strengths and potential. I’m going to walk you through three ways you can use your results to improve your own career happiness, success, and satisfaction.

    I built the Career Decoder Quiz back in 2015 and, as of today, hundreds of thousands of people have taken the quiz. When I first shared it with our members and followers, I got a comment from someone on LinkedIn with a PhD in psychology who said their results were spot-on accurate. It truly made my day because I always knew that this information was important and accurate but it’s very validating when you hear other individuals saying that as well.

    How To Use The Career Decoder Quiz To Unlock Professional Success

    The Career Decoder Quiz is all about your workplace personas. Your workplace personas explain how you like to add value and how you like to create value and results for your employer when you’re doing work. And this is important to understand because you’re not an employee. You’re a business-of-one, and you’re selling your services to the employer. You want to be able to sell services that you enjoy providing. That’s how you find satisfaction in your career.

    I’ve worked with thousands of people over the last 20 years. I’ve been a career coach for a long time, and I know that the number one reason people are so unhappy is that they’re not internally motivated by their work. The technical term is “intrinsic motivation.” It means it’s work you desire to do and that’s exactly what the career decoder results reveal. You’re going to feel more satisfied naturally when you’re doing the kind of work your results say you should do.

    When we work with people inside the Work It DAILY platform, when our career coaches help our members, what we normally find is that they’re doing work that is not leveraging their top two or three workplace personas. The Career Decoder Quiz is going to tell you you’re top personas. When you get your results, anything that scores 20% or higher means it’s a strength of yours. It’s a persona that you prefer to leverage. Some people only have one. Some people have a couple of them. But you can’t be all eight, so you’re going to see what you prefer to do and how you prefer to deliver that value.

    The first way (and probably the most important way) you should be using the results of the Career Decoder Quiz is to get very clear on the kind of work you want to do.

    We had a client take the Career Decoder Quiz. He was a very successful executive. In his current role, he was known as an Optimizer. (That’s one of the eight workplace personas.) He was very good at looking at problems in the company and fixing them. But he wasn’t fulfilled in this work. When he took our quiz, it turned out that his top three workplace personas were Mentor, Visionary, and Educator.

    What he preferred to do was coach others. He preferred to share a vision, help people connect the dots, and see things that they couldn’t see on their own. He also wanted to close gaps in knowledge and information.

    So what we did was work together to quantify his skills and abilities in these three areas—the ways he preferred to work—and then he went to his leadership team and expressed the fact that he really wanted to find work within the organization that allowed him to leverage these three areas. And, lo and behold, the executive team said to him, “We’ve been waiting for you to say this.” He was shocked. They were very happy with him in the Optimizer role and he seemed to be happy in the Optimizer role, so why would they’ve changed things? It wasn’t until he expressed his desire to do work that was in line with how he felt satisfaction that he was able to get results.

    I see this every single day inside the Work It DAILY platform as we coach people on their careers, helping them better understand themselves, and this is just one of the ways that we do it.

    The second way you need to leverage the results you get from the Career Decoder Quiz is to use them in all your career tools (resume, cover letter, LinkedIn profile, etc.).

    As a business-of-one, you have to market yourself to employers, and the way you market yourself is with things like your resume, LinkedIn profile, cover letters, answers in your interview prep, and elevator pitch when networking. A lot of people tend to have the “everything and the kitchen sink” mentality where they put everything they’ve ever done in all of these career tools. They want to present themselves as a Jack or Jill of all trades. That is a fatal error. You need to brand yourself as a specialist, and, more importantly, as a specialist doing the kind of work you want to be doing. The Career Decoder results are what enable you to do that.

    Now, a lot of people get their results and suddenly change their LinkedIn headline to “I’m a Builder, Mentor, Superconnector,” or in their resume they write that they are an Educator or Warrior or Researcher. That’s not what I want you to do. That’s actually pretty hokey and that’s not what this was intended for.

    Instead, take a look at your top personas. You’ll realize those personas are really verbs. So if you’re a Builder, then you want to go through your tools and quantify your experience building things: “I’ve built X systems.” Or if you’re an Educator, “I’ve taught X number,” or “I trained X number of people.” Or if you’re a Superconnector, “I’ve connected X number of customers/vendors.”

    You want to look at how you move the needle in your career. You want to quantify your accomplishments and work experience using the terms that align with your top workplace personas. Quantifying these things and branding yourself this way is how you’re going to send the message that this is your specialty, this is how you like to create value, and you can prove it.

    The third way you can leverage these results and improve your professional satisfaction is by understanding or getting familiar with your co-workers’ personas.

    It’s important that you know how to leverage the strengths of other people. And let me explain why.

    When you know what your strengths are, you’re going to have more confidence, and when you know the strengths of others, you know how to tap into them and collaborate better. This is what companies are looking for—their top resources working well together and creating much better results.

    By recognizing the talents of others and knowing to leverage them in concert with yours, you’re going to gain a lot of trust, respect, and credibility within the organization.

    I see a lot of people plateau in their careers because they get so focused on what they’re good at and how they win that they lose sight of the fact that in order to get to the next level in their career, they need to partner with others. They need to be able to leverage the strengths of others. You can’t be all eight personas. You’re going to need all eight of those personas in the workplace. So if you want to get ahead in your career you need to put your ego aside. You need to leverage your own strengths, your own personas, and you need to leverage those of your teammates. Your credibility, the trust and the respect that you’re going to get, is gonna skyrocket. And, of course, that’s going to make you much happier on the job.

    Those are the three ways you can leverage the Career Decoder results. Discovering your workplace personas is so empowering. And we don’t just use the Career Decoder Quiz with job seekers and professionals. We also use it with employers. They use it with their staff to help them better understand their teammates. And if you’re a leader, not only should you take this quiz, but you should also give it to all of your employees and learn their results so that you can tap into their strengths and make sure they’re happy on the job.

    I hope this free quiz helps you, your coworkers, and your leaders. If you want to work one-on-one with our coaches and learn more about your results, join us inside Work It DAILY today. Let us be your guide toward a happier, more satisfying career.

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

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  • Are you sick and tired of depending on other people for your career success? Good! The only person in charge of your success is you.

    If you’re feeling trapped by a job you hate, a bad boss, insulting pay, or all of the above, it’s time you take ownership of your career. But where do you start?

    Here are three things you can do to start taking control of your career today:

    Take Inventory Of Your Skill Sets

    What are you known for? What are your best skills? What accomplishments are you most proud of? What are your best qualities?

    Take some time to list your best skill sets, and how you use those skill sets to add value to a company. Think of all the quantifiable examples of the times your skills have helped previous employers and other examples of your skill sets standing out from everyone else’s.

    Organizing all of this information will help you build your personal brand and organize how you want to market yourself as a business-of-one to employers.

    Start Being Proactive In Your Career

    A young professional has a career conversation with her boss

    If you want to take ownership of your career, you need to stop being reactive and start being proactive. Reactive activities include but aren’t limited to the following: waiting for your boss to give you a promotion, waiting for recruiters to reach out to you with new opportunities, or waiting for employers to email you back about your resume.

    Notice that all of these “job search activities” started with the word “waiting.” Newsflash: Waiting doesn’t get results. Taking action does.

    Instead, set up a meeting with your boss to discuss advancement opportunities or make a bucket list of companies that you want to work at, and then reach out to employees at those companies to connect, and maybe even set up informational interviews.

    It’s also important to submit your cover letter and resume to an actual person when applying for a job, and following up with that hiring staff.

    Build Your Professional Network

    Man on phone and laptop builds his professional network

    The old saying, “It’s who you know,” has never rung more true. Get by with a little help from your career friends! Focus your efforts on building your professional network. Meet new people within your industry and bucket list companies. Start conversations and build relationships with them.

    Even if you’re not ready to find a new job or change careers yet, having these people in the wings as references, mentors, and professional contacts will help you tremendously. They can provide tips and insight, act as a sounding board for ideas, and even hook you up with a job. Just make sure you help them out in return!

    Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone

    Young happy professional stands out in the job market by stepping out of her comfort zone

    Part of your new, proactive approach is to step out of your comfort zone. Many people hold themselves back solely because they are afraid of what people might think. But remember, nothing will change if you don’t!

    Make an effort to put yourself out there and meet new people. Set up informational interviews with like-minded professionals, strike up a conversation with someone at a conference, and attend in-person or virtual networking events.

    If you’re ready to achieve career success, take ownership of your career today by following the tips above. What is your business-of-one capable of?

    Need more help with your career?

    Become a member to learn how to UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

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  • Staying active at work can be a real challenge. It’s easy to get sidetracked with projects and meetings and not even realize you’ve been sitting for a couple (or more!) hours. So, how can busy professionals be more active during the work day?

    Thankfully, there are a few simple ways you can change your daily routine so that it is more active and you are less sedentary. We all know how important it is to be active throughout the day so we are expending energy, moving our joints, working our muscles, and staying flexible. With that in mind, here are four tips to be more active at work today!

    Track Your Steps & Calorie Burn

    Our first tip is to have something to track your steps and calorie burn throughout the day. You can use an Apple Watch, a Fitbit, or just a pedometer so that you have something monitoring your activity level and telling you that you’re moving enough.

    Plus, it feels like a real accomplishment when you know you’ve met your goal of 10,000 or 20,000 steps!

    Park Farther Away From Your Destination

    via GIPHY

    It’s all about squeezing more activity into what you already do. When you’re running errands or going to work, for example, instead of looking for one of the closest parking spots, try to park as far from the door as possible (if it’s safe!).

    Just think how many more steps you’ll walk if you do this all day long!

    Take The Stairs

    via GIPHY

    Our next tip is stairs, stairs, stairs. Wherever you are—at work or at home—always take the stairs.

    It may take you a little longer, and you may be out of breath at the top, but it’s worth it. Taking the stairs is so beneficial to your overall health and cardiovascular system. Make it a goal to take the stairs at least once a day, if not two, three, or four times.

    Start now, and see how much easier it is to walk up the stairs in a month’s time.

    Add Activities To The Ones You Already Do During The Day

    via GIPHY

    Lastly, try adding some type of activity to activities you already do.

    For example, we all go to the bathroom. So, before or after every visit to the bathroom, do something. Whether it’s squats, lunges, push-ups, or another body weight resistance exercise, you’ll be sure to get moving if you make it a goal to do so!

    We hope this motivates you to add a little more activity to your busy workday. If you don’t have time to go to the gym, you can still incorporate physical activity into your existing daily routine.

    Over time, making these small changes to your daily routine will make a big difference!

    Like what you learned today? Be sure to follow Amber on Instagram @AccentuateWellness, or like her Facebook page to discover more fun workouts, healthy recipes, and helpful lifestyle tips!

    Download her FREE at-home workout guide now!

    Note: Individuals should always speak to their physician before making any significant dietary or lifestyle changes.

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

    We hope this motivates you to add a little more activity to your busy workday. If you don’t have time to go to the gym, you can still incorporate physical activity into your existing daily routine.

    Over time, making these small changes to your daily routine will make a big difference!

    Like what you learned today? Be sure to follow Amber on Instagram @AccentuateWellness, or like her Facebook page to discover more fun workouts, healthy recipes, and helpful lifestyle tips!

    Download her FREE at-home workout guide now!

    Note: Individuals should always speak to their physician before making any significant dietary or lifestyle changes.

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  • Recruiters look at dozens of resumes a day. If they see something they don’t like, your resume could wind up in the “no” pile in just seconds.

    Here are a few tips you should follow to make your resume better than the rest, standing out from all that competition!

    1. Make Sure Your Resume Is Error-Free

    We know that sounds like a no-brainer, but you might be surprised by the number of resumes that have a spacing issue, a punctuation error, or even a misspelling. The problem is that you have looked at your resume so many times, your brain knows what it is supposed to say, but in reality, it says something else.

    Get several people to proofread your resume, and have them read it for different purposes. One person should read for grammar, for example, and another should read for punctuation and spelling. You cannot afford to send a resume to employers with mistakes. Any superficial error can severely hurt your chances of getting a call for that job.

    2. Align Your Resume With The Description Of The Job You’re Applying For

    Hiring manager asks about a job applicant's resume in an interview

    Too often people think that their resume is a “one-and-done” proposition. Not so! You should customize your resume for every job each time you apply.

    Match up keywords from the job description with keywords in your resume. Make sure that your achievements and successes indicate that you are an excellent candidate for the job you’re applying for. You need to tweak your resume for every single job posting. There are no exceptions.

    3. Make Your Resume Sleek

    Woman reviews a resume

    Some people think the trick to a great resume is to stuff as many accomplishments into it as possible by using tiny font and stretching the margins to the limit. The result is a resume that is difficult to read and looks cluttered and clunky. Those resumes will wind up in the “no” pile because the hiring manager doesn’t care enough to search the document for truly relevant information. They also don’t have time to waste when there are dozens of other resumes to review.

    Your resume should have a clean and contemporary look and feel. Use lots of white space and be as concise as possible. Also, use clean-looking fonts like Calibri or Arial.

    4. Use Keywords Strategically

    Woman on laptop works on her resume

    Check the job description carefully for each position you’re applying for. Then, use keywords in your resume that match the keywords in the job description. Also, you may find it helpful to use free word cloud tools to identify the keywords that are used most frequently in the job description. Adding those keywords to your resume will make it easier for your resume to get past the ATS.

    Recruiters and hiring managers are looking for individuals who are a good match for their job openings. Don’t make them guess whether or not you have the required skills or experience. Your resume should get them curious to know more about your qualifications. At the end of the day, the goal of your resume is to get the employer to call you. It won’t be the thing that gets you the job, but it will be what gets you an interview.

    5. Describe Accomplishments, Not Responsibilities

    Man on laptop looks for a job while writing his resume

    Avoid using the word “responsible” in your resume. Instead, concentrate on specific and quantifiable accomplishments. For example, which sounds more impressive:

    • Responsible for manufacturing production with proven record of exceeding expectations.
    • Managed 5 different teams over the course of 10+ years resulting in $50 million in new sales along with a 30% reduction in waste.
    If you said the second bullet point, you picked the right one. That’s what hiring managers are looking for on a resume.

    6. Use “Power” Words

    Hiring managers discuss a job candidate's resume during an interview

    Demonstrate that you are a person of action. Rather than being “responsible for” something, use words like “advised,” “led,” “launched,” “executed,” “generated,” “planned,” “produced,” etc. These powerful resume words (and others like them) demonstrate your ability to perform on the job and your specific role in previous jobs. Strong action words validate your capabilities and specific duties you have performed.

    Consider which is better:

    • Responsible for launch of a new product.
    • Initiated and led new product-launch that resulted in $20 million in revenue.
    Don’t forget that your resume represents who you are and what you can do when you can’t be there in person to explain all of that to a recruiter or hiring manager. Your resume is just one of hundreds that fly into a company on any given day. You need to stand out from the crowd, and it is your responsibility to make that happen. By following the tips above, you’ll be sure to create a resume that’s better than the rest.

    Need more help with your job search?

    Become a member to learn how to land a job and UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.
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  • This may be controversial, but as a 20-year career coaching veteran, I think one of the biggest mistakes people are making post-pandemic is they are overly focused on trying to pursue career happiness when in reality you should be focused on building career resilience.

    Career Happiness Is Elusive. Building Career Resilience Will Give You Career Satisfaction.

    There are three reasons why career happiness is very difficult to achieve. First, career happiness is a state of mind. So if you’re sitting here and wondering, “How can I just be happier in my career today?” you can’t. Instead, certain things need to happen that are going to make you stronger and more resilient, feel more in control, and give you more satisfaction.

    Career satisfaction will make you feel happy.

    The second reason you should quit trying to pursue career happiness is that it constantly evolves. It’s like a moving target. The moment that you start to feel happy, the situation will change, or your circumstances will change. So it’s not a one-and-done sort of thing. Many people struggle with the concept of “happiness,” and say something like, “I was happy here and now I’m not. I’ll never be able to achieve this.” That’s not true at all. Happiness is a constantly moving state.

    The third reason you don’t want to focus on career happiness is that it’s different for every person. I coach people every day who tell me they tried something that worked for someone else, but they didn’t get the same results, and now they feel bad about it—about themselves, their situation, etc. You can’t compare someone else’s success, someone else’s perceived happiness, with your own ideas of success and happiness.

    Career happiness just isn’t the right thing to pursue for all three of these reasons.

    So, what do you do instead? You focus on building up your career resilience. Why do you do that? Because the stronger you get, the more in control you will feel, and the more satisfied you will be with your career—and that will make you feel happy.

    How To Build Career Resilience

    Happy man at his dream job

    There are three things you need to build career resilience. First is the environment. You need to surround yourself with a community of people who are all focusing on career resilience as well. What happens is you end up learning from these people. In fact, they show you things you didn’t know you needed to know. But also, candidly, you look around the room and you go, “These people aren’t any better than me. I can do this.” And that’s going to give you motivation, which many people lack.

    The second thing you’re going to need is coaching. You’re going to need people who have done this, who have hacks, who have tips, who have tricks, who are keeping up with the latest techniques, who can understand your particular situation and get you the advice you need. Think about all the people in your life you use when you can’t get results on your own. They’re essentially coaches. That’s what you need right now to get you to the next level. If you think about it, coaching isn’t a sign of weakness. It’s the path to greatness, especially in things like sports. And this is no different. You’re playing a sport here in your career.

    The third thing that you’re going to need is knowledge. Knowledge is power. Knowledge is the one thing nobody can take away from you. Employers can never take away your knowledge. That’s your power. That’s your value. That’s your worth when it comes to work.

    When you gain new insights, when you learn new things, it is going to make you much smarter. You’re going to make more informed decisions, and you’re going to take yourself from being an employee who feels like they don’t have any power to an employee who realizes they’re a business-of-one, and you want to be a partner with that employer. They’re not any better than you. You want to partner up, and you want the mutual trust and respect that you deserve. But that only comes when you build up that resiliency.

    I like to call people who build career resiliency “Workplace Renegades” because they get off the hamster treadmill, think for themselves, and learn how to take ownership of their carer using the right environment, the right community, the right education, the right courses and knowledge, and then the right coaching, the right support.

    If you would like some help building resiliency in your career, become a Work It DAILY member today. Sign up for our 7-day FREE trial and see how easy it is to get the results you want and deserve.

    Good luck, and go get ’em!

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  • The pressures of meeting deadlines, achieving goals, navigating office politics, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance can often lead to overwhelming levels of stress. However, it’s crucial to remember that managing stress at work is not only essential for our mental and physical well-being but also for our overall job performance and satisfaction. So, how can we effectively manage stress at work? What stress management tips actually help?

    We recently asked our leading executives for their best tips on how to manage stress at work.

    Here are their responses…

    Michael Willis, Sports Business Operations Executive

    In this argument, we will explore how embracing tension with a calculated risk-taking approach can not only make you a better manager of stress but also propel your career to new heights.

    1. Stress as a Natural Byproduct of Ambition: Consider this: Stress often arises when we push our boundaries, take on challenging projects, or strive for ambitious goals. In such scenarios, stress is not a sign of failure but rather evidence of our commitment to growth and excellence. By accepting stress as a natural byproduct of ambition, we can shift our perspective and view it as an opportunity rather than an obstacle.

    2. Stress as a Source of Motivation: Stress, when managed effectively, can serve as a powerful motivator. It can push us to think creatively, find innovative solutions, and unlock hidden reserves of resilience. By reframing stress as a motivator, individuals can channel their energy into productive endeavors, ultimately increasing their chances of achieving their goals.

    3. Calculated Risk-Taking: Embracing stress involves calculated risk-taking. Rather than shying away from challenging situations, consider them as opportunities to grow. When you take calculated risks at work, you open the door to innovation and transformation. Remember, some of the greatest success stories in business were born out of taking risks in high-stress environments.

    4. Stress-Resilience as a Skill: Managing stress at work is not about eliminating it but developing resilience to handle it effectively. Like any other skill, stress resilience can be cultivated through experience and learning. By approaching stressful situations as opportunities to sharpen your strength, you not only manage stress better but also build a valuable skill set that can be applied throughout your career.

    5. The Competitive Advantage of Stress-Embracers: In a world where competition is fierce, those who can effectively manage stress while embracing calculated risks often stand out. They demonstrate their ability to adapt to challenging circumstances, inspire team confidence, and lead resiliently. This competitive advantage can lead to career advancements, greater responsibilities, and increased recognition.

    In conclusion, stress at work should not be viewed as an enemy to be defeated but as a companion on your journey to success.

    Michael Willis has 18+ years of experience working with accounting & sports organizations and has managed P&Ls of $10M – $125M+ with budgets of $3M-$50M+. He worked for the NFL for 22 1/2 years, mainly with the game officials working on the financial/accounting side of the business.

    Lisa Perry, Global Marketing Executive

    Woman meditates/calms herself down at work to manage stress

    Can you relate to this? You work in a fast-paced company with tight deadlines, long hours, and multiple project setbacks. You miss deadlines, and your co-workers are constantly catching up on shared assignments. If any of this sounds familiar, you probably know what it feels like to be stressed on the job. Here are five tips for how to manage stress at work:

    Self-Awareness: The first step is to recognize the signs of stress, which starts with self-awareness. Stress can manifest differently, but common symptoms include irritability, fatigue, headaches, or stomach pains. Research shows that 95% of us believe we are self-aware, yet the actual number is 10 or 15%. Most of us are oblivious to how it’s affecting us and how others truly perceive us. Why is this important? Because when you become self-aware, it allows you to reshape how you present yourself to the world by aligning your self-perception with the perception of others.

    Mindfulness & Meditation: Taking just a few minutes daily to focus on your breath, clear your mind, and be present can significantly reduce stress levels. As a type A person who struggles to unwind during high-stress situations, taking a moment to count slowly to 20 can be quite therapeutic. Identify tools (i.e., deep breathing exercises, guided meditation, mindfulness apps) to integrate into your day that aid in stress reduction and promote being present.

    Self-Care Matters: Prioritize a well-rounded approach, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, and sufficient sleep. Your food choices can influence stress levels; avoid excessive caffeine and sugar as they can contribute to anxiety. Opt for nutrient-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Eating balanced meals helps stabilize mood and energy levels. Regular physical activity offers various benefits, one being stress reduction. Exercise triggers the release of endorphins, natural stress relievers. Quick walks during breaks or desk stretches can significantly improve your well-being. Strive for seven to nine hours of sleep per night, as recommended by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI). Sleep deficiency can impair productivity, focus, and decision-making. High-quality sleep is crucial for effective stress management.

    Stay Calm: Amid conflict, maintaining composure is vital. By staying calm and removing emotion, you can take an objective step back to evaluate the situation effectively and find constructive solutions. Most importantly, it will make the people around you feel safe, secure, and confident in your leadership.

    Maintain Control Over Your Reactions: There are things in life that are out of our control, like an angry co-worker reacting to your project. What you can control is your response, handling the situation, and managing your emotions, which ultimately reduces stress. When faced with someone’s unhappiness or criticism, adopt a curious and empathetic approach:

    • Ask, “What makes you feel that way?”
    • Express understanding, “It sounds like something I said was offensive to you.”
    • Replace defensiveness with curiosity.
    • Stay inquisitive and keep asking questions.

    By implementing these five tips, you can transform a stressful work environment into a place of balance, productivity, and well-being. If you found this helpful, I invite you to explore my book How to Develop a Brand Strategy and insightful brand marketing articles.

    Lisa Perry helps companies drive revenue by using consumer trends, insights, and data analytics to innovate their approach to marketing.

    How do you manage stress at work? Join the conversation inside Work It DAILY’s Elite Program.

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  • Understanding one’s stage of self-awareness development as an executive coach who facilitates leaders to practice conscious leadership is crucial. My own developmental journey emphasized the need to pay attention to how my beliefs and assumptions enabled my effectiveness in varied contexts and interactions.

    I realized the importance of aligning my developmental stage with my role and goals. As a learning practitioner, it was clear to me that unless I became able to make sense of my own way of being and acting at a level essential for enabling others to transform, I would not be acting with a high degree of integrity. Nor would I be effective.

    What provoked the realization that I was stuck in a level of mindset that was not going to serve me was my encounter with one of the leaders of consultancy that I was seeking to join.

    My Pivotal Moment

    Soft skills, growth, development concept

    During an interview, the company director asked me, “What are your strengths?” Proudly, I responded, “According to my StrengthsFinder, my strengths are Activator, Communication, Connectedness, Woo, and Positivity.” I believed I was showcasing my expertise. However, my ego took a hit when the director responded, “I don’t want you to define yourself by an instrument. I want to know your essence, who you are.”

    My Transformation Journey

    Growth, development, self-transformation concept

    Despite the rocky start, I was hired. At the beginning of our professional relationship, the director played the bad cop, challenging my tendency to act as the subject matter expert. He aimed to unveil my authentic self, and this feedback served as a wake-up call for me to reflect on who I truly was.

    At this point, I needed a framework that I could understand that would help me find my way to what many call a “later stage of meaning-making.” Enter Robert Kegan’s five stages of adult development, a framework that, despite my conceptual understanding, revealed a disparity between my self-assessment and reality. Believing I was at a stage referred to as Self-Authoring Mind focused on what I could create of value according to my own standards, I discovered I was operating from the perspective of Socialized Mind, which draws self-esteem and orientation based on how others would judge me.

    I engaged the support of an executive coach, driven by my eagerness to learn, enabling a breakthrough that helped me transition from a Socialized Mind to Self-Authoring Mind. I was able to free myself from always needing to know the answers, to be more comfortable with the ambiguity of not knowing, and to be more collaboratively accepting of others’ perspectives.

    Power Of Coaching In My Journey

    Coaching, mentoring, guidance concept

    This experience highlighted the power of coaching that fosters self-awareness and transformation. I acknowledged that I wouldn’t have progressed to higher stages without my coach’s guidance. This personal evolution equipped me with the wisdom to help others grow.

    Another resource, Jennifer Garvey Berger’s book Changing on the Job: Developing Leaders for a Complex World, deepened my understanding of transformation. It guided me on how to assist others in identifying their level of development and fostering corresponding growth.

    My journey underscored the importance of self-awareness, coaching, and aligning developmental stages with professional roles. This experience fueled my passion for enabling others to navigate their transformative journeys.

    Your Journey

    Growth, professional development concept

    As you reflect on my journey of self-discovery and professional growth, consider your own path. What stage of development are you in, and where do you feel called to be to lead more effectively? Are you ready to embrace the transformative power of coaching, self-reflection, and continuous learning?

    If you’re ready to unlock your full potential, take the first step today. Seek a coach, explore relevant literature, and commit to your own evolution. Remember, the journey to self-awareness and authentic leadership is ongoing—embrace it and you will empower yourself to inspire meaningful change in both your professional and personal spheres. Your transformative journey awaits!

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  • You’ve been applying for jobs every day, but you feel stuck. Your job search isn’t going anywhere. You submit job applications but never hear back from employers. Why aren’t you getting interviews? What are you doing wrong? Is it your resume?

    Chances are, your resume is to blame.

    It’s very easy for job seekers to make common mistakes on their resume, unknowingly making it harder for them to get their job application in front of the hiring manager. Can your resume get past the ATS? Will your resume stand out to hiring managers in those first few seconds?

    Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to prevent your resume from getting tossed. Here are three reasons why your resume isn’t working, and how to fix them:

    1. You Don’t Have Enough Keywords

    Most companies use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to sort through all of the resumes they receive for their job postings. One of the ways they determine which job candidates are qualified for a specific job is by looking at the keywords they’ve included on their resume.

    How many keywords on your resume match the keywords in the job description? If you don’t have enough of the right keywords on your resume, you’ll get screened out of the hiring process by the ATS. This means your resume will get tossed without it ever crossing the hiring manager’s desk.

    If you’re not getting contacted by employers, not having enough keywords (or the right keywords) on your resume could be the reason why.

    The Solution: Include keywords from the job description on your resume. What skills, technologies, and experience are employers looking for? How many of these skills do you possess? Are you familiar with any of the technologies/software you’d be using on the job? Do you have the right kind of experience?

    Once you identify what you need for the position you want to apply for, make sure you customize your resume for that specific job so you give yourself the best possible chance to get past the ATS and impress hiring managers. List relevant skills in the top fold of your resume (avoid keyword stuffing) and be sure to use the terms mentioned in the job description on your resume, if applicable.

    2. You’re Using An Outdated Resume Format

    Woman on laptop realizes her resume isn't working

    Another reason why your resume might not be working is because you’re using an outdated resume format. Similar to the first reason, your resume format could be preventing the ATS from effectively reviewing the information on your resume. But if your resume does get past the ATS with an outdated format, hiring managers could still take a look at your resume, see that it’s outdated and hard to read, and then decide to toss your resume because you didn’t make it easy for them to get the information they need about you.

    With an outdated resume format, you also run the risk of looking old and out of touch, which won’t help your case if you’re already worried about age discrimination.

    If your resume isn’t easy to read and it doesn’t stand out to hiring managers in the first few seconds it’s getting reviewed, you won’t get contacted. Employers simply won’t be able to determine whether you’re qualified for the job or not because you didn’t make it easy for them to find that information.

    The Solution: To ensure your resume gets past the ATS and stands out to hiring managers, use an updated resume format. Pay attention to how you’re formatting each section of your resume and make sure the formatting is consistent throughout the document. Focus on using bullet points in your “Work History” section, delete lengthy paragraphs, and don’t force your resume onto one page. This will help you make sure there’s enough white space on your resume so it’s easier to read.

    When in doubt, a simple, clean resume format is the best option.

    3. You Aren’t Quantifying Your Work Experience

    Woman on laptop frustrated and thinks that her resume isn't working

    Let’s assume you had enough keywords on your resume that it got past the ATS. Let’s also assume you used an updated resume format. Now that your resume is in the hiring manager’s hands, and all the information on it is easy to read, how are you standing out from the competition? Does your work experience prove that you’d be a valuable employee? What is the service you provide as a business-of-one? What is your specialty? Do you get results? What have you accomplished?

    If you’re not quantifying your work experience on your resume, you’re going to have a harder time impressing hiring managers. Quantifiable information allows hiring managers to measure the degree of knowledge and skills you have to offer. It’s a way to inform them about what and how much you can bring to the table.

    The Solution: Learn how to quantify your work experience on your resume. Think about what you’ve accomplished in your career. Look at the bullet points in the “Work History” section of your resume and try to include at least one number for each.

    Including numbers on your resume not only shows hiring managers what you can do, but they also help your resume stand out since numbers break up text and grab peoples’ attention. If you can’t quantify something, it doesn’t belong on your resume.

    As a job seeker, nothing is more frustrating than spending hours applying for jobs only to never hear back from employers. If your resume isn’t working, it’s probably due to one (or more) of the reasons above. Follow our tips so you can avoid these resume mistakes and finally land the job you want!

    Need more help with your job search?

    Become a member to learn how to land a job and UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

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  • The thought of conducting a job search right now is probably very intimidating for most professionals—and a little frightening. While there are many things that could be scaring you about your job search, you can’t let those fears impact your career, especially when you can easily overcome them with the right tools, tips, and strategies.

    If the phrase “looking for a job” strikes fear into your heart, don’t worry. Here’s how to overcome your job search fears this fall, just in time for Halloween!

    Fear #1: Employers Won’t Call You Back

    You’re putting so much time and effort into your job search, but what if employers never call you back? This is a common fear for many professionals, and for good reason.

    A lot of job seekers do spend hours a day applying for jobs only to never hear back from employers. There are a few reasons why this might be happening: your resume didn’t make it past the ATS, your cover letter didn’t stand out to hiring managers, and/or you didn’t adequately market your skills and experience to employers or demonstrate your value as a business-of-one.

    How To Overcome This Fear:

    Fear #2: You’ll Bomb The Job Interview

    Woman is stressed as she waits for her job interview

    This is a fear that probably keeps you up at night. You’ve finally found a job you like and landed an interview with the company. But what if you bomb the job interview? What if you ruin your chances of getting a job offer?

    Confidence is key in a job interview, and you can’t be confident without proper interview preparation.

    How To Overcome This Fear:

    Fear #3: You’ll Accept The Wrong Job Offer

    Job seeker on laptop dealing with job search fears

    If you’ve been looking for a job for a while, you might feel desperate. This puts you in a vulnerable spot, but you should avoid settling for a job if you can.

    On the flip side, you might have multiple job offers and need to decide which one is right for you. Do you feel empowered to make the right decision?

    How To Overcome This Fear:

    By following the tips above, you’ll successfully overcome any job search fears you may have, and you’ll realize the job search isn’t as scary as it seems!

    Need more help with your job search?

    Become a member to learn how to land a job and UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

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  • The most common mistake I see people make after a few weeks or a month of job search is they turn inward. What do I mean by that? Well, the job search already feels really stressful to people, so you muster up the energy, you take time out of your schedule to do something you’re not really excited about, and you start putting yourself out there…only to get nothing back.

    You apply for jobs. You don’t hear back. You’re not seeing the traction. So you turn inward. You go, “What’s wrong with me? What am I doing wrong? How can I fix this?”

    If you could fix this yourself, you would—and you know that.

    There’s this internal struggle that go on. There’s a fear. There’s a confusion. We turn inward. It is literally the worst thing you can do. And let me tell you why…

    Turning Inward Will Make Your Job Search Longer

    You’re going to keep turning inward, and you’re probably going to do that for another five months. I know this because the natural mark (we have studied this at Work It DAILY) where people finally break down and reach out for help is six months.

    It’ll probably take you six months of job search failure before you’ll stop turning inward and having this internal struggle and say to yourself, “I need some help.”

    Now, the sad part about this is a lot of people swing completely in the other direction because, for those six months, you were doing it by yourself, so now you think the answer is to have it done for you. Therefore, you might overpay to have your resume or LinkedIn profile written, only for that to not work either.

    You see, in order for you to really solve your problem, you’re going to need to learn a few things to get the results you want in your job search, and they’re going to need to be slightly customized for your situation. The better solution is to get some help from a career coach who will do it with you.

    A career coach is going to teach you what you need to do in order to land that job. You don’t learn these things in school, so you’re going to want that help. And this is knowledge no one can ever take away from you. As you learn these things, it’ll just make you a better job seeker. And every job is temporary, so you’re probably going have to do this at least one or two more times in your life, so why not learn it now?

    Stop turning inward. It’s time to get some help so you don’t waste six months of your life not getting the results you’re looking for.

    The number one thing people say to me when they join Work It DAILY is, “Why didn’t I do this sooner?” So don’t be one of those people, okay? Get some help. You don’t have to go it alone.

    Check out my affordable career coaching options here.

    Good luck, and go get ’em!

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  • You just got a new LinkedIn connection—woo-hoo! Okay, now what? How can you start building your professional relationship with this person so you add value to each other’s network?

    Here are some tips for getting a dialogue started with new LinkedIn connections…

    1. Start With Your Subject Line

    If you’re having trouble thinking of what to say in your initial message to your new LinkedIn connection, start with your subject line and then elaborate.

    You can say something as simple as “Thanks for connecting!” or even “It’s great to meet you!” If you enjoyed an article they wrote or shared, you can say something like, “Loved your article!” or “Thanks for sharing your insight!”

    If you met your new LinkedIn connection in person at a networking event, mention something specific like, “It was great to meet you yesterday at the ABC Event!” or “Wanted to continue our conversation from yesterday.”

    2. Introduce (Or Reintroduce) Yourself

    via GIPHY

    Send your new connections a brief message to introduce yourself, or reintroduce yourself if you’ve previously met. This will give them a refresher and will help jog their memory from when you last spoke.

    3. Mention Things You Have In Common

    via GIPHY

    Take a look at your new LinkedIn connection’s profile and see what you have in common. Do you share a similar skill set? Do you volunteer for the same organization?

    Find something you share and start a conversation around it. It will make it easier for you to break into a real dialogue. Plus, it will help build a stronger personal connection between the two of you.

    4. Offer Your Support

    via GIPHY

    In order to have a strong network, you need to constantly offer value to it. When you meet a new connection, make it clear that you’ll be a valuable contributor to his or her network.

    You can say something like, “Please let me know how I can help you achieve your goals,” or “I’d be happy to support you in any way I can.”

    5. Don’t Ask For Favors Just Yet

    via GIPHY

    Don’t ask for anything right off the bat. It makes you look greedy.

    It’s important to build a relationship with this person before you ask for any favors. They’ll be more likely to help you out once they know who you are and that you’ll return the favor.

    Don’t be afraid to start a conversation with a LinkedIn connection ever again. Use these tips, and you’ll successfully grow your professional network.

    Need more help with your career?

    Become a member to learn how to UNLEASH your true potential to get what you want from work!

    This article was originally published at an earlier date.

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  • When it comes to your job, do you feel trapped, helpless, and out of options? Stop letting your career hold you hostage! The Professional Independence Project is a month-long series designed to help you kickstart your journey to becoming more professionally independent. It’s the ultimate bootcamp for feeling in control of your career. In 30 days, you’ll transform yourself with our tools and resources. And the best part? It’s free to those who sign up for our daily emails.

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