best apps career

10 Best Apps to Help You Grow Your Career

Grow your career with incredible apps

Welcome to the digital revolution. The world of possibilities courtesy of apps. There are millions of apps in the world right now and more are being churned out by the minute. This only makes your life easier because you might just get an app to help you drown the noise of your annoying boss. While your list of new year’s resolutions remains largely unticked, we would like to help you work towards that item that is career growth in 2017, with the help of apps.

Here are 10 apps that can greatly help you work towards attaining career growth this year.

 

Fitness apps

A healthy mind is definitely a must-have if you want to improve your performance and get that promotion you have been eyeing. Fitness helps you achieve alertness, boost your brain power and helps you sleep better.

If you have been planning to grow your career this year, these are fitness benefits you could definitely do with. You need to develop a regular workout schedule and routine, and apps such as Tabata and Move Tracker will come in very handy. Health and fitness apps are available on Google Play Store and Apple App Store as free to download, freemiums or premiums.

So, combine that goal to lose weight this year with the goal of growing your career with health and fitness apps and kill 2 birds with 1 app.

 

Team collaboration apps

In your journey towards career growth, you will need the help of your colleagues. To achieve this, you will need proper team collaboration and coordination on projects to ensure that tasks are carried out fast and effectively. Team collaboration apps help in assigning duties and responsibilities and tracking the activities.

Apps such as salesforce, Trello and Asana, are great for managing team activities and they can also help you keep track of remote teams.

Your way to success is paved with helpful team members and you can walk towards your growth strategy with the help of team collaboration apps.

 

TedTalks app

Every great idea in the world came from a person who saw an opportunity and devised a unique way of solving an existing problem. Well, with Tedtalks, you get the inside story behind some of the most brilliant ideas in the world and history, from the people who devised these ideas.

TedTalks are great learning platforms and to grow your career, you will need to learn how great ideas were developed and build on them or apply these ideas to your work.

You can now watch and save videos of your choice in the TedTalks series on your smartphone thanks to the Ted Talks app. This free to download app is available on Google Play Store and Apple App Store.

 

Habit-forming apps

Once you decide to achieve career growth by the end of the year, you will need to break down milestones into small tasks and achievable goals that drive you closer to your dream. This will mean getting into small habits that can be hard to form and maintain.

With the help of apps such as Habit Factor, Habitlock and Momentum, you can now get into habits such as studying, healthy living and vacation times and track them closely so that you can see how well you are progressing.

These apps help you know what is lagging behind and what needs improvement. They are available on Google Play Store and Apple App Store and they are either free to download, freemiums or premium, depending on your taste and preference.

 

Brainstorming apps

Your mind is an app because it creates ideas and stores them. However, it is a faulty app because sometimes it creates ideas and then deletes them or stores them in a folder that can prove hard to retrieve. While this great app is free, it has its own shortcomings and needs helps.

There are some great apps available on Apple Apps Store and Google Play Store that help you note down great ideas on the go or great points in a meeting. These apps ensure that you do not forget that idea that will help you improve your work and keep track of your brainstorming activities.

Apps such as Penzu, Xmind, and Freemind are available for free or as premiums or as freemiums. Download one today and stay on course.

 

Book reading apps

It goes without saying that to grow your career, you need to improve your knowledge. One way of doing this is by reading books that are in line with your career, motivational books or even entertainment books. Carrying a book around can be cumbersome and some books may not also be available in bookstores when you need them.

Enter the digital era, with apps such as Universal Book Reader, PocketBook Reader, EBookDroid, and Kobo, which are available in free to download, freemiums, or premium. They are also available on Google Play Store and Apple App Store so now, you can expand your knowledge conveniently and be on your way to growth.

 

Apps for tracking time

RescueTime automatically tracks how you spend (or waste) your time on your mobile. If you’re aiming for a promotion, knowing when you are most productive and what distracts you, helps you to make a better impression on your boss while maintaining a work-life balance. Looking to switch jobs? The app can help you to spend the right amount of time job hunting.

 

Apps for revamping your resume

When applying for a new job, you should always take a look at your resume and likely give it an upgrade. The VisualCV app helps your CV stand out from the crowd with professionally designed templates which can be populated with your existing data.

Looking for something even more creative? Try out Vizualize.me to turn your resume into a stylish visual that conveys your work history and skills at a glance. But you will need a desktop to run this app.

 

Slideshare

This helpful app is great for networking and sharing knowledge with professionals in your field. Designed to let you consume and share information in the form of slides, this app is great for you if you want to grow your career as you get to find information about your profession, which can help you improve your performance.

You can also share information and get insights from industry experts on the information you have. It is available on Apple Apps Store and Google Play Store and is free to download.

 

The BrighterMonday App

Fresh on the market, this is the app for the future. You have probably decided that the way to growth this year is by finding a new job and what better way to do it than to have the app that brings you the latest jobs that match your credentials? Definitely through the BrighterMonday App. This app is free to download and it is available on Google Play Store. It has interesting features such as:

  • Push notifications (which alert you when a job matching your credentials is available)
  • Anonymous viewer (allowing you to view jobs without signing in)
  • Create, edit and view job seeker profile
  • Search and view available jobs
  • Apply for jobs

A first of its kind, this app is definitely your best companion while job hunting and working towards achieving career growth this year. Simply search for the BrighterMonday App on Google Play Store, download it and start applying for your dream job now.

Which apps do you use to improve your life?

 

Work-Life Balance; Is It Possible To Balance Life And Work?

How to strike a balance between life and work

Today, being able to balance life at work and outside work is becoming almost an impossibility. This could be blamed on the scarcity of jobs forcing many people in the workforce to dedicate their lives to their work in fear of losing it,as well as technological advancements that allow people to work from anywhere and anytime.

Although dedicating your life to your work in a bid to earn enough income to sustain you may seem the right and logical thing to do, it is very important to dedicate some time to yourself, your family as well as your hobbies outside your work. Work-life balance has very important benefits both to your health and your productivity at work and these include:

  • You will be able to be more creative since you have enough time to rejuvenate
  • Being more creative will in turn increase your productivity at work
  • You will be happier, healthier and less stressed about your work
  • You are bound to be more attentive with a balanced life. This means that while at work you will not be distracted and you will pay enough attention to your work that will allow you to perform better since you will be fully concentrated on it
  • Work-life balance also contributes to the growth of your relationships both at home and at work. You are able to build and maintain relationships with all the important people in your life which is important in helping you build a strong support system, which you need to succeed
  • You will be less affected by burnouts from work stress that could encroach on your personal time

Now that you know the benefits of work-life balance, how do you achieve it? Here are some tips we suggest you could follow:

1.Plan

The most important thing you need to do in order to achieve work-life balance is to plan your time. Using your calendar or diary, note the tasks you have to do in a day or week, ensuring the tasks are balanced between those related to your work and outside of your work.  

After writing down the tasks, prioritise them and allocate the appropriate amount of time you think you will take to achieve each of the tasks and ensure that the plan is followed. It is also advisable to allocate some extra time just in case anything else is to come up.

Having a plan in place helps you to organise your tasks better, helps you to complete them in time and helps you recall any tasks you may have forgotten. With a balanced plan in place, there is no doubt you will be able to achieve work-life balance.

2.Do not let tasks overflow

Now that you have a plan in place, ensure that tasks meant for work are performed within the time allocated to them and those tasks meant to be done with your family or outside of work are also kept that way.

It is recommended that while at home you are not replying emails or performing work tasks and while at work, your attention as well, is focused on work and not anything outside of work.

Adopting this will allow you to give full attention where it is due when you are both at work or at home.

3.Have boundaries

otherside

If it happens on an extreme that the extra roles are coming in too quickly and beginning to take a toll on your health and personal responsibilities, learn to politely say, ‘No’ to your boss or colleagues that may be piling their work on you.

Set boundaries and avoid being a, ‘yes man’ to everyone, all the time. Know your boundaries, prioritise your tasks and should anything disrupt your plan that is not too urgent, be sure to finish what you had planned to do before you go ahead and do it.  

With your boundaries set in place, your colleagues and boss are bound to respect you more and encroach less on your personal life outside of work.

4.Work smart

Success is in working smart and not necessarily hard or working too much. Assess your kind of work and figure out ways you could be able to do it smarter in a less strenuous and more productive way.

Being able to also prioritise your tasks can help you to know where exactly you need to focus which can allow you to learn to take on the more important tasks and leave out the less important ones.

Technological advances and further training in your field can also help you do this effectively.

5.Learn to delegate

Understand that you do not have to do everything on your own. If there is someone that has a similar skill set as you, learn to delegate tasks to them.

The best way to go about this is to prioritise each of your tasks and figure out those you can delegate. Delegating allows you to focus on the more important tasks and helps you avoid being stressed out trying to do everything.

6.Do not strive to be a perfectionist

Some people do not let tasks go as they strive to ensure that they are perfect. In as much as this may seem like a good thing, it could be negative as you may end up spending so much time on detail that is not that relevant and could leave you stressed out instead.

As demands increase, it is very difficult for you to ensure everything is perfect. The best way to go about work is not to strive for perfectionism but excellence as you will often be worn out trying to be perfect.

7.Make time outside of work a priority for yourself as well

make time

Just like your work is a priority, time for yourself outside work should also be a priority as it has a ripple effect on how you will perform your work.

Ensure that you have time for your family, time to meet up with friends, time to take a vacation, to exercise, meditate or simply sleep in.
All this time outside work helps you rejuvenate, be more creative and more productive at work as well as helps you maintain other important relationships outside of work that you need in order to succeed.

8.Unplug

With recent technological and telecommunication advancements, people work more which ends up intruding on their personal time. With such developments, you are bound to get email and phone notifications that interrupt your time off.

To deal with this, one should be resilient enough to either completely put off their laptop or phone or refuse to answer any notifications related to work while at home. Getting into this habit will help you have more uninterrupted time outside of work.

In as much as work is important and puts food on the table, it is also important for you to understand that other aspects of your life outside of work are also important. Make it a point to balance your life and work beginning today!

 

Career Women; Tips You Need To Soar In Your Career

Career And Business Tips Women Need To Succeed

Despite the fact that more women are in the workforce than there were before, the ratio of men pursuing careers and business continues to remain higher compared to that of women. This could be attributed to the fact that women seem to be faced with more challenges that hinder their career growth such as gender stereotypes and trying to balance their families and work. However, even in the face of these problems, some women have maneuvered and managed to become some of the most powerful people in the world today. You too could become one of these women in your career and business with the right guidance.

The first step to succeeding in your career as a woman is, to be aware of some of the challenges you could face. These include;

Societal gender bias; unfortunately, the notion that certain careers such as, engineering are best suited for men and that men are considered to be better leaders, still exists in many African cultures. This notion is one that continues to prevail and hinders women from breaking the glass ceiling.

As a woman, knowing this enables you to understand why you may be treated the way you are at your workplace and what steps you could take to prove your worth and reach for your aspirations.

Work and life balance; this challenge mostly affects women with families. As a woman with children, there is no doubt you are bound to find it difficult to balance raising your children and holding an 8.00am to 5.00pm job. However, with proper planning, prioritising and a helpful support system,  it is very possible.

This challenge also affects pregnant mothers who may often have to take off over 60 days of maternity leave. Some organisations consider this time lost and, therefore, prefer to hire men as they are sure they will not take as much time off due to pregnancy, but dedicate all their efforts to the organisation.

Sexual harassment issues; women are more likely to be victims of sexual harassment than men at the workplace. Sexual harassment could take many forms such as rape, suggestive comments, and verbal insults. All these affect women both emotionally and physically, to the point that they feel compelled to exit an organisation. As a woman, it is important for you to stand up for yourself when you are sexually harassed and take appropriate action.

Furthermore, you need to demand that your rights are protected and upheld in your workplace.

Very few role models; unlike the men that, have many role models who are willing to mentor them and therefore benefit from the old-boys networks with influential men, women have few female professionals to look up to. The main cause of this may not be because there aren’t any women holding important positions in power or business but because most successful women are simply not willing to mentor fellow women. With such a dilemma, women are forced to rely on male mentors whom they may often feel disconnected from. To succeed as a woman, the role of a female mentor is important. It is advisable for you to find one.

The nature of alpha men; the challenge women face when working with alpha males is that they often find it difficult to take criticism from a woman or to be led by a woman. Because of their ego, such men may often make it difficult for you to succeed in your career. The best way to handle them is to understand their nature and find a way to work with them without bruising their ego.

The nature of women; many times, society considers women to be weak and lenient because of their emotional side. This nature of women may sometimes have a negative role on women’s career growth as they are often considered to be too emotional and not strong enough to handle seemingly challenging positions. As a woman, the best way to handle this nature is not to try and become a man but to embrace your nature and exercise emotional maturity and control.

Office gossip; many times when a woman moves up the ladder in her career, she will be the subject of office gossip. While some people may attribute her success to her hard work, others could claim that since she is a lady, she must have bribed her way up There is bound to be some gossip about how she got to the top and the way she does her work. As a woman, you have to be aware of this and find ways to appropriately handle gossip without losing control.

Knowing the exact challenges you could face whether general or work-specific, gives you a glimpse into the territory you will be in and how exactly to handle it accordingly. It helps you as a  manager, to better understand the challenges the women in your team go through, and identifying areas you can empower them to excel.

It is very important to research as much as you can about the business and career you hope to get into, in order to equip yourself with all the necessary information you need.

So, what tips do you need to grow and succeed in your career path as a woman?

1.Acquire as much education and training in the field you want to grow in, as possible:

Gone are the days when education was something reserved for men. Today, women are allowed to gain education up to whatever level they wish. Knowing and pursuing professional courses and training in your area of expertise gives you the credibility and knowledge you need to perform highly in your career and grow in it.

2.Find a mentor to give you guidance:

Find a female mentor in your field or business that could give you a glimpse of how things work. A female mentor will also be able to objectively give you the necessary information about any challenges you could face as a woman in that field since they too are women and have experience in the field. Be sure to pick a mentor that will help you grow in your career and not derail you.

3.Seek male mentors as well:

Do not only learn from the women in your career. Make friends with the men as well and learn from them. These men are not meant to be your competition but rather your support system. Knowing this and not viewing them as the enemy but people you can learn from, will further help you build strong networks that could help you grow in your career.

4.Be confident:

Confidence is a very powerful tool. If you are qualified and you know it; be confident and share your opinions. If someone tries to sexually harass you or disrespect you; be confident enough to stand up for yourself. Your confidence will help you gain the respect and attention you want to grow your career and business.

5.Work hard:

Contrary to popular belief, simply being a woman and being considered as the weaker sex will not make it easy for you to climb the career ladder. This notion may sometimes work to your advantage but in order to gain the respect you deserve and the confidence of the employees you lead, you have to work hard. Let your growth be highlighted by the fact that you are a hardworking lady and not someone that has had it easy.

6.Find your unique aspect:

Employers today want to hire creative people that have unique talents and ideas. Find what makes you unique and cultivate it. This will help you get noticed and give you an edge over your competition, that includes both your fellow female and male counterparts. Do not aim to be like everyone else, aim to be you; different.

7.Use the ‘scarcity of women in the workforce’ to your advantage:

Do not get intimidated simply because there are very few women in the career you want to pursue. Instead, channel all this to your advantage and use it to get noticed. Chances are high you are bound to get noticed as one of the few women aiming to succeed in your career which could open more doors for you.

8.Command respect in the way you dress:

As a woman, it is unfortunate that the way you dress has a great impact on the perception and impression people make of you.Dress modestly and in a way that will command respect. Dressing inappropriately may get you all the attention you could desire but will make others doubt your professionalism and ability, which could affect your career negatively.  

9.Possess the right communication and interpersonal skills:

The key to succeeding in any workplace is proper and effective communication. Gaining the right communication and interpersonal skills will make it easier for you to interact with people and build better relationships; an important  factor that can help you grow in your career.

10.Practice planning and prioritising:

As a woman, it is important that you find a way to balance your work, family and other aspects of your life. The best way to do this is to learn to plan, prioritise and delegate tasks in your day as well as your career in general. With planning, you will be able to achieve all you need to and live a healthy and less stressful life.

11.Be respectful and humble:

Regardless of the position in the organisational hierarchy, you hold, be respectful to everyone. Learn to speak to people respectfully even when you may be rebuking them and remember to be humble about your achievements. Being respectful and humble is able to get you the support you need to grow in your career much faster than being disrespectful and being a braggart.

12.Embrace your nature as a woman:

The mistake many women make in their careers is to try and adopt the nature of a man. Yes, you may be able to hold the same leadership position as a man but you may not necessarily have to follow the way he does things. If, as a woman, you tend to  tap into your emotions in order to make decisions, embrace that. Know how to control your emotions and use this ability and your nature to your advantage.

13.Do not be a pushover:

Learn to be an independent mind as a woman. You do not have to follow or do what people say you must do if you do not believe they are right. Be a strong woman in your character and not one that can easily be swayed.

  1. Learn from every experience you can get and aspire for more:

Whatever position you may hold, remember to learn from it whether you whether you enjoy the task or not. Seek to gain experience in your field of work and pick important lessons from every situation.This experience could just be your stepping stone to a greater career

15.Do not drag down other women or anyone:

Should you end up succeeding in your career or business, do not be the kind of person who despises fellow women or others below you, simply because you are among the few women that have made it. Instead, seek to mentor others and teach them the lessons you have learned.

Do not be afraid to break the glass ceiling in your career and business. Aim to succeed and be the best. Start today!

Unemployment in Uganda; how to survive the scourge

Tips on how to beat the unemployment scourge

Unemployment in Uganda is at an estimated rate of 80% and affects both fresh graduates and other entry-level job seekers. Take an example of Jane who graduated with a second class upper degree and envisioned herself having a job right after campus. Unfortunately, this has not been the case as she has been unemployed for over 2 years despite the fact that she has applied to over 50 companies.

Like Jane, applying to so many companies despite having the best grades does not necessarily guarantee you a job. This is because the ratio of job seekers to the jobs available is high making the competition for these few jobs very stiff.

However, this does not mean that you have to take the same course as Jane. You can rise above this scourge and become one of the few Ugandans that are employed. Here are some smart ways you could follow to ensure that you do not remain in the unemployment bracket for too long.

1.Target your job search:

1

Applying to every company for every job offer there is does not guarantee you a job. The smart move here is to apply for job vacancies that relate to your field and the skills you have. This helps you to save time and to apply for jobs that you have a higher chance of getting.

Targeting your job search also entails targeting your Cv to fit the job offer for which you are applying. Find a Cv template most relevant to you and tailor it to the job you are applying for. All this will help you stand out of your competition.

2.Exploit your networks:

Whether it is your family members or friends, letting them know that you are looking for a job and what kind of job you seek could be one step to getting you into employment. The people you know could just refer you to a job application they have seen or a potential employer that could offer you a job.

Here are some pointers that could encourage you to exploit the networks you have:

  • One of the channels companies today use to hire people is, ‘employee referrals’; in many cases, employees of a company are the first to be informed when a job vacancy is available. They have the option of applying for the job offer or letting someone they know about the offer who could be you.
  • Companies are much more likely to hire referred candidates; companies trust their employees and believe that the people they refer are indeed competent. To better your chances, form networks within the fields and companies you would like to work for.

 

  • More influential people have more power; being referred by top-level executives in a company gives you a better chance to be hired as these people’s opinions are trusted more. Ensure you have such kinds of people in your networks.
  • The people referring you present you in a positive light; when someone is referring you, they are more likely to say good things about you. You could exploit the positive information about you to bargain for the best working conditions and present yourself as someone that is valuable.

The best networks are those that are able to get you ahead in life. Be sure to create and maintain friendships with the right people that could help your career growth.

  1. Exploit job sites:

Gone are the days when you would have to spend so much energy and money to look for a job. With job sites such as Brightermonday Uganda, you can apply to companies without having to spend too much money or energy dropping off your application. Furthermore, with job sites you are able to get the latest information about the job offers in the market.  

Job sites not only make the application process easy for you but could just give the advice you need to help you stay ahead of your competition. Make use of them today.

  1. Exploit social media:

social media

 

Social media is another smart way you could get information about the latest jobs in the labor market. Many companies advertise their vacant positions on platforms such as facebook, twitter, and LinkedIn.

Furthermore, who you present yourself as on your social media accounts could either land you a job or not. To determine this, here are some questions you should ask yourself;

  • Is my social media persona appealing to a professional?
  • Are my social posts respectful?
  • Does the information on my social media profiles sell me and the rare skills I have?
  • Are my connections and networks on social media relevant?
  • Can I exploit these connections (followers and friends) to my advantage?
  • When someone checks out my profile, what do they think?
  • Do the pictures I post portray me as a professional?

Remember to clean your social media accounts and ensure they present you as a professional person. Many employers today consider what you represent on your social media accounts to hire you.

Social media is not just used to communicate. Use it to land your dream job.

5.Exploit your talent and hobbies:

Do you like to sing, can you dance or tailor clothes? The talents you possess make you unique from other job seekers and could be your source of income.

Here are some steps to follow should you ever think of turning your talent into a career:

Step 1. Find out what makes you unique; Figure out what talent you have that is rare and makes you stand out. Even when you could be able to do what everyone else can do, find out what makes your service unique. That uniqueness is what will help you stay ahead of your competition.

Step 2. Research and Develop that talent; now that you know what makes you stand out, continuously improve that unique talent. This helps you master your art and gain more expertise about it.

It is also important to find out as much information as you can about the kind of business you would want to get into in relation to your talent.This exposes you to the strengths and gives you insight on how you can minimize the risks you could encounter as you turn your talent into a career.

Step 3. Find out what your potential market needs; say there are so many designers in the market, what unique designs do you think you can come up with that your potential consumers could like and need? It is very important to study the market you are going into. This means, knowing your competitors, what they offer as well as what new creative ideas you could bring. This all makes you stand out.

Step 4. Advertise what you have to offer and take over the market; starting a business can be very scary. However, it pays off in the long run if you follow the right steps. Advertise what you have through medias such as social media and word of mouth after which you can then begin to provide your service. Be sure to give it your best so that you can retain the customers you get and gain more.

  1. Exploit growing trends:

In the past, trends such as creating and running businesses online were not that big. However, these trends have grown and many people earn a lot of money from them. Knowing the latest trends such as digital marketing and exploiting them to your advantage could just provide you employment.

Although some of these trends may not earn as much money as the traditional jobs at the moment, there is no doubt that they will be much more relevant in the future. Why not jump onto them now and secure your future?

7.Exploit internship and volunteering opportunities:

Some internship and volunteering opportunities pay very little or nothing at all which could be very discouraging for you as a job seeker. However, you should look at the bigger picture. In as much as these opportunities may not earn you a lot of money, they give you the invaluable experience you will need in your job search.

Ensure you learn as much as you can from these opportunities and add them to your Cv. They often represent the experience you could have gained from a particular job. Furthermore, some companies provide impressive interns with permanent jobs after their internship period. Therefore, should you be given such opportunities, take them on and do your best.

8.Exploit the time you have to improve yourself;

make time

Without a job or school to go to, you are bound to have loads of free time. What you do in this free time could help you gain skills and knowledge that could be relevant for you in the future. Instead of watching television the whole day or sleeping, use the time to find more information about how you can grow your career, better your Cv or how to better handle interviews.

You could also enroll for free online courses or attend workshops from which you could gain more information and network with potential employers. Whatever free time you have, ensure that you are exploiting to help you be a better person.

9.Be optimistic:

One of the reasons some job seekers lose out on job offers is because they become too pessimistic and simply stop their job search. Much as the job search process is one that can be very frustrating at times, do not give up. Keep applying and hoping that one day you will land your dream job. The kind of attitude you have as a job seeker could just help you or derail you. Be persistent and patient; it always pays off.

Getting a job in Uganda is not easy. However, the smart tips above could just make the job search process easy for you and help you avoid being unemployed for such a long time as Jane. Apply them in your life right away.

Ways You Never Knew Social Media Affects Your Job Search.

How Social Media Can Impact on Your Job Search.

The use of social media has become a fast growing trend in both business and people’s personal lives today. From easing communication to helping business brands to grow their presence, social media has also helped job seekers to find their dream jobs. With many companies frequently sharing their job opportunities on their social media platforms, job seekers today are able to get information about the latest job opportunities in the market faster.

Many employers and recruiters have also resorted to using social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Google +, Instagram, Blogs, to mention but a few to search for possible candidates and find out more information about the people they are hiring. A fact to support this is; a 2015 “CareerBuilder” survey of more than 2000 hiring managers and HR professionals that reported that 52% of employers use social networking sites to research information about job candidates and one-third of these happened to find information that made them more likely to hire a candidate.

This, therefore shows, that what you put on your social media platforms says a lot about you and could affect what a possible recruiter thinks about you. Checking your social media platforms enables a recruiter to know more about:

  • Your interests and skills.
  • How well you communicate.
  • Any unprofessional hobbies you could have such as using illegal substances or alcohol.
  • Your education and work background.
  • Your opinions about the industry.

Whatever you put on your social media platforms, remember someone out there that could be a possible employer is watching. Portray yourself in the most professional way. As you make good use of social media, it is important to desist from the following habits.

Slandering people and brands on social media; the person or brand you once publicly slandered could just be your future employer. Slandering anyone publicly depicts you as a rude and an immature person. Should you have an issue with anyone, handling it in person or through an inbox or DM is the wise thing to do.

Taking part in every trending topic; not every trending topic or hashtag is positive. Some topics are quite controversial and you jumping onto them could often present you in a negative light. Be careful what trend you jump on and what exactly you contribute to it.

Posting Negative personal opinions about your work; no matter how much you hate your job or boss, social media is not the place to vent your feelings. An employer could pick up on this and get the impression that you could do the same while working for them which would have negative effects on their company’s brand.

Posting pictures while indulging in negative hobbies; should your hobbies entail drinking a lot of alcohol or taking illegal substances, social media is not the place to show that side of you. Should you put up information about your hobbies ensure that they depict you in a positive way.

Discussing confidential information; let’s say your boss has made you angry or you have been laid off from your job, no matter how angry you may be, it is not right for you to put up confidential information about the company that hired you. This depicts you as someone that cannot be trusted and would not keep the confidentiality clause of any other company.

Knowing what you should and should not post on your platforms is the first step in creating a compelling profile any recruiter can resonate with. How you then use your social media presence to your advantage is what makes you stand out enough to land that dream job. So how can you use social media to your advantage when it comes to hunting for your job?

1.Have a strong social media presence:

Do you have a social media account? If not, it is important for you to create one as soon as possible as it will not only help employers notice you but will also help you grow important social networks that could contribute to your job search.

2.Portray who you really are:

Many companies today are hiring people based on their personality because it is a very important aspect in determining one’s performance and how they interact with the rest of their team members.

Different personalities thrive in different situations. Therefore, before a recruiter hires someone, they have to be sure that the person actually fits the work situation regardless of the experience they may have. One of the ways a recruiter can know more about you is through your posts on your social media platform. What you post about says a lot about who you are as a person.

It is, therefore, important for you to portray your personality strengths through each of the posts you put up on social media. It is also wise to portray who you really are and not the fake version of yourself. Should there be a difference between who you are and your social media presence, chances are high a recruiter could end up hiring you for a job that is not fit for your personality.

3.Portray yourself as a professional person:

What you post about, your bio, as well as, your profile picture all give an employer a glimpse of your professionalism.  Employers prefer to work with people who are professional and have a bit of work ethics. Even when you may showcase your fun side on your social media platforms, always remember to be professional in what you post, how you post it and the pictures you upload.

4.Showcase your good communication skills:

The kind of language, speech, and punctuation you use in your posts reflects the kind of communications you have or may lack. Any employer would like to hire someone that is able to write grammatically correct English in their reports or proposals. Your posts could give the recruiters a glimpse of that.

5.Portray how versatile you are:

Recruiters want to hire people that are well-rounded because they believe these people can contribute a lot more to companies. It is important to have a social media presence that is well-balanced and presents you as someone that has a wide range of interests and skills. You can do this by sharing updates about voluntary activities and other groups you could be a part of  outside your work.

6.Portray your creativity:

Creativity has become another important aspect employers look for when hiring employees. Employers are looking for people who are different and think outside the box because they believe they can move their companies forward. Endeavor to be different and smart in the way you post updates or how you present the  resumes you choose to upload on your social media platforms.

7.Post good and strong references and recommendations about yourself:

Just like a business, you too need to grow your brand as a person and one of the major ways to do that is, through sharing great recommendations from your different references. Be sure to pick references and recommendations from people that have a positive influence in society and will most likely leave a lasting impression on anyone reading your bio. Social media platforms such as, Linkedin allow for this and you should use it to your advantage.

8.Showcase your different achievements:

Employers often use your social media platforms as a cheap and simple measure to carry out background checks. Having updates or pictures showing the achievements you previously highlighted in your resume gives the employer more proof about what you said about yourself. On the other hand, the employer can also be able to get a glimpse of the achievements you may not have highlighted in your resume.

9.Use your social media presence to find out more about the company you would like to work for:

Many companies today aim at building a strong social media presence that allows for their clients to interact with them better. With your social media platforms, you can delve more into what the company is all about by actually interacting with them on social media.

This not only gives you important information about the company that could set you apart from your competition but could also show a recruiter that you are really interested in what the company is all about.

10.Aim at building a large following:

According to a 2015 “CareerBuilder” survey of more than 2000 hiring managers and HR professionals, 14% of employers see a large following as a positive thing. A large following means you are influential to the community and have important networks that an employer could tap into to grow their business.

The best way to build an influential following is by sharing information that is actually valuable and important.

The digital world we live in today requires everyone to have a social media presence as it goes a long way in helping you stay connected to the whole world and enables you to stay informed. For a job seeker, a good social media presence could just be what you need to stand out of the crowd. Social media will not just help you in your job search but could be something you could earn from.

We urge you to, therefore, create a strong social media presence for your personal brand. It is bound to take you heights.

12 Questions To Ask Before Choosing A Career Path.

Choosing A Career Path.

Choosing the right career path is one of those situations that is very confusing and nerve-wracking. Apart from your own ideas of what you would want to do in the next 40 years, there are people in your life who feel they know better and seek to advise you on which way to go. Although other people’s opinions could be relevant, you need to know that choosing a career path is a decision they have to make on their own.  Before deciding what exactly you need to do, it is important to answer some questions. This step is crucial in determining the kind of decision you will make that will, in turn, affect the rest of your career.

The best career path is one that is not only able to help you pay your bills but actually brings you satisfaction and joy doing it. Should you choose a wrong career path, you will be prone to a very sad life full of regret, low motivation, and sadness. If later into your career you feel that you have made the wrong decision, it is never too late. Here are some questions you need to ask yourself before you make a final decision.

  1. Who am I choosing this career for?

It is very common for parents and teachers/lecturers to influence people into careers. Even when these other parties may have the best interests for you, it is important for you to remember to pick the information that works and is most relevant to them but not let other people’s opinions influence their own.

Your career defines most of your life. It is a journey only you will have to take and you, therefore, have to know what is best for you and what you actually want to do regardless of what everyone else may think.

  1. Is this career in line with my interests?

When choosing a career, it is important to find something that is in line with your interests as you are bound to be more passionate about it. One of the reasons why some people’s careers are more successful than others is because those people are passionate about them.

With a career that you are interested in and passionate about, there is no doubt you will seek to pursue it above expectations and will most likely persevere during the hard times.

  1. Am I able to perform the tasks within this career?

Being passionate about something and actually being able to do it are two different things. For example, you may be passionate about music but do not have a great singing voice to be successful in the arts’ career. Knowing your abilities is what determines whether you will actually do great in this career. Pick something you can do.

  1. Is this career in line with my values?

Most people’s lives and decisions are guided by the values they have in life. Do you know what your values really are and do you think they will match the career path you are taking?

Being able to answer this question and making the right decision in relation to your career helps you feel more comfortable and proud of the career you have chosen. Should you pick a career that is not in line with your values, chances are high you will always feel uncomfortable and doubtful as your values and what you stand for contradict what you are actually doing.

  1. Does my personality fit this career path?

Certain careers are fit for introverts while others tend to suit the extroverts. What is your personality and does your personality fit the career path you are thinking of taking?

Personality is very important as it goes a long way in determining whether you will perform well in your career or will not. For example; if you want to pursue a career in customer relations, are you the kind that likes people or an introvert that prefers being on their own? Should you be introvert, you will most likely not know how to handle customers.

To handle this better, you could take a personality test or a career quiz that could help you figure out some career options best suited for your personality.

  1. Does my education/training suit my career path?

Many times people are often advised to choose a degree or course that matches what they actually want to pursue for the rest of their lives.

Choosing a career that is in line with your education not only gives you the introductory knowledge you need to perform in that career, but will increase your chances of growing in that career. When many recruiters are selecting possible candidates they often look at one’s education to see whether it is in line with the job. Having the necessary credentials sets you apart from everyone else in the career you are pursuing.

Furthermore, under this question, you should also ask yourself whether you are capable and willing to get more training and education to further increase your credentials as far as the career path you want to pursue is concerned.

  1. What kind of autonomy and control do I want in my career?

There are types of people that work better under supervision and do not mind being directed by someone else and other types of people that absolutely hate being controlled.

Knowing what type of person you are and whether or not you are capable of handling your independence productively will help you pursue the career best for it for you. For example, if you are the kind of person that does not like being under the control of other people, it is best to pursue your own business while if you are the kind of person that may not have the best management skills or the discipline to work in less-autonomous environment, it would be best to choose a career where you have guidance from other people.

  1. Are there jobs in the career path I want to take?

Knowing the availability of the jobs within your career and the competition for them further guides you on what you need to do to get those available jobs as well as stay apart of your competition.

Choosing a career path that has more job opportunities is very advantageous for you as you have more opportunities to practice and grow in that career. However even when there may be very few jobs in the career path you hope to pursue, do not give up on the path if that is what you want. Find ways on what you can do better and perhaps create even more job opportunities for other people.

  1. Am I willing to go to/live where the jobs in my career are?

In some careers, growing and getting a job means having to change locations or frequently travel. Are you willing to do whatever it takes for your career which may sometimes include moving miles away?

Are you the kind of person that likes to travel or perhaps is comfortable not traveling? Knowing this about yourself will also guide you further in picking the best career choice for you.

  1. Is the type of career you are choosing to follow growing or dwindling?

Whatever career you choose, you need one that will last for a long time and is steadily growing. Even when the career may not be as active at the moment but is growing and has much more future, it is much better than a career that is dwindling and may slowly become extinct.

Also, choose a career that is not stagnant as it will make your career stagnant as well but one that has the prospect for growth and will enable you to grow as well.

  1. Do I have other career options similar to the career path I am thinking of pursuing?

Should the career you have chosen to follow become extinct all of a sudden or should you realize it may have been a mistake, what would be your next option?

It is important to always have a plan B in case the worst happens. The best way to do this is to pick a career from which you can gain a variety of soft skills that you can easily transfer to other careers.This gives you more options to pick from or go to should their first option fail.  

  1. Does this career fulfill my financial needs?

For many, this is the most important factor in choosing a career path because it seems to be the most realistic. Whatever career you choose, you should ensure that it will actually be able to help you meet your needs for a long time and enable you to pay your daily bills.

A career that may not be able to do this will often leave you frustrated and regret the decisions they have made. However, at the same time, your financial needs should not be the only thing that drives the career choice they choose.

After answering these questions objectively, you are sure to gather all the necessary information you need to make a final decision. After choosing that career path we urge you to go ahead and fight to succeed in it and be the best you can be. We wish you the best of luck.

 

Performance Appraisals; Successfully Prepare for One.

Successfully Prepare For Your Next Performance Appraisal.

Performance appraisals are one of those much-dreaded meetings for any employee. However, they need not be a scary experience for you. Preparation is the secret! If one has prepared well for their performance appraisal, they are not only relaxed during the whole process but are at a higher chance of getting a better review.

If you are wondering what a performance appraisal really is, well in a nutshell; this is simply a time when an employee meets with their line manager or boss to assess their performance; how far they have come; what their future prospects are; the areas they need to improve on and how the company can be able to help them improve.

Regardless of the type of performance appraisal system, an employer chooses to use, one should note that this process, in general, is meant to rate their work performance which in turn affects other factors such as pay raise or one’s career progression.

Knowing how much impact your performance appraisal could have, preparation for it is key because:

  • It  puts you in a better position to attain a positive score as you are much more relaxed and able to answer questions more objectively.
  • Presents you as a pro-active rather than re-active worker. Many employers today seek to have more pro-active employees that are able to move the company forward.
  • Helps you avoid any surprises or if there are, you are still in a better position to handle them. There is nothing much more terrifying than having to handle a surprise question when you are off guard and unprepared.

So how does one prepare for their performance appraisal?

Step 1: Review Your Job Description

The first document that gives anyone information about their job role in terms of their title and the tasks they are required to perform in that job is a “job description”. Getting back to this document helps one to understand their role more, what it entails and more importantly if they have been able to or not been able to carry out their job role as stipulated by your job description.

This step is very important because many supervisors or managers judge employees based on their job description. Therefore, it is important for one to be very well aware of one of the major yardsticks such as this that their line manager will use to assess their performance. This helps put them in a better place to prepare for any questions they could ask.

Step 2: Review Your Previous Performance Appraisals and Journals

One major way for one to show their employer that they are steadily progressing in their career is being able to perform better than they did in their previous performance appraisals.

Being able to perform better begins with one reviewing their previous performance appraisals; how they performed; what areas they needed to work on; have they bettered themselves in those areas and many other factors. By knowing one’s previous performance, one not only places themselves in a better position to perform better on the job way before their appraisal but also enables one to figure out how they can better answer the questions they failed to answer best the previous time.

A better way to keep one’s performance records is by using performance journals. These give one more recent and detailed information about their performance that also helps them evaluate their performance. Keeping and reviewing previous performance appraisals and work or performance journals is very important in the self-evaluation step of any performance appraisal process.

Step 3: Prepare Your List of Accomplishments

Having been able to gather all the necessary information one needs about their previous performance, it is easy to point out their work successes and accomplishments.

Quite often employers will pose the question about what achievements one has had so far. Being able to answer this question confidently with your achievements off head and well detailed not only shows that you are actually honest about your accomplishments but also places you in a more positive light. No matter how small an accomplishment may be, always be sure to note it down in detail. It could set you apart from every other employee.

Step 4: Prepare a List of Your Shortcomings as well

Quite often, there will be shortcomings for anyone as they take on their work tasks. However, these shortcomings do not necessarily mean one is a failure or an underperformer at their job.

Some of these shortcomings could be unavoidable or partly one’s fault. Regardless of the reason for their existence,  being able to cite these shortcomings and reasons as to why they were present portrays one as an individual with a positive mindset. It presents one as open to positive criticism with the aim of becoming better.

Knowing this information also helps one easily answer the questions concerning why they were unable to complete their given task and therefore are better placed to request for any support they many need from their employer or supervisor.

Step 5: Perform a Self-Evaluation of Yourself

While some companies allow for this step before the actual performance appraisal meeting, others do not and it is up to the employee to do it on their own. Whatever the situation, one cannot afford to miss out this step because it is very crucial.

With this step, one usually uses a form that may be similar to or the same as that of the line-manager to also rate their performance. While rating themselves, one needs, to be honest and factual as this is meant for them to give their perception of their performance.

Having evaluated and rated oneself, it is then important for one to share their ratings with their supervisor. This enables the supervisor to bridge any gaps between the employee’s ratings and their ratings during the appraisal.

Step 6: List Down the Areas you Need Improvement

Are there any areas you think you can perform better based on your previous performance?

If yes, what are those areas then and what do you need to help you get there?

Being able to answer these two questions places one in a better place to request for any further support from their supervisor or employer in order for them to perform better. This support could be in terms of training, job shadowing opportunities, short courses to mention but a few.

One of the major objectives of a performance appraisal is how the company can help one as an employee to better perform their job. One being able to clearly cite the areas they need to improve and what they need is one step to fulfilling this objective.

Step 7;  Highlight Your Goals:

Every employer wants to see their employees grow and add more to their company hence have the will to aspire to be better and do more. Being able to highlight some future goals and express them to your supervisor presents you as an employee that is willing to grow and will, therefore, help the company grow.

The most important step to figuring out one’s goals is being able to have both a short term and long term career or work plan in place. Based on these plans, one is, therefore, able to identify what they need to do to fulfill these plans which are their goals.

This step also enables one to assess the goals they have been able to attain as well as those they have not been able to attain and what they need to do to attain them. Growth also means making an effort to continuously set new goals after being able to achieve previous goals.

Step 8; Let your Supervisor Know About your Preparation So far:

Sharing your preparation process with your supervisor not only presents you as someone that takes the appraisal process seriously but also helps your supervisor to also better prepare for this crucial meeting and removes any differences in opinion you both may have.

Step 9; Be Open Minded:

Being open minded helps one answer questions more objectively and without any bias. If one is too negative minded about their performance appraisal, chances are high they will be nervous and therefore will not be in a better position to answer the questions asked.

On the other hand as well, if one only expects the best out of the appraisal, chances are high that they will not be open to receiving constructive criticism hence will tend to be too defensive which is a negative thing.

Being open minded and objective puts one in a better position to celebrate their accomplishments as well as accept criticism to grow in their career.

Step 10; Make a Decision About Whether Or Not To Discuss Pay:

Pay raise is highly associated with one’s performance appraisal. It is usually advisable to make any demands about pay prior to the performance appraisal.

If one follows the above steps closely, there is no doubt they are able to know exactly what pay demands they need to make before their performance appraisal meeting. However, everyone should note that at the end of the day, their performance appraisal will often determine whether they get a pay raise, decrease or their pay remains the same. Therefore, whatever demands or questions one should have should be in line with both their self-evaluation and their performance review.

Following these steps will enable one answer the various questions they will encounter during their performance appraisal meeting confidently without too much difficulty. That said, do note that the success of any performance appraisal is not only in how well one is prepared to answer the questions they are asked but how one actually performs their job. One’s performance on the job is the basis of all this, make sure it is the best.  

 

Preparing For Your Career What Does It Entail.

What secret is the best for getting a job?

It is almost certain that most of the readers on this blog are looking for a “Secret” to finding jobs without stress. In fact, chances are that you are reading this because you are looking for that “Secret”.  Marketing professional relish the term secret because it carries a huge sense of mystery and easily entices their potential clientele.

It is interesting because when you do not have something, when it is not in your hands, when it seems like you do not have the means or the way of getting it, then it must be hidden.  And if any ‘expert’ could find a way of cracking the code and provide you the secrets to uncovering what you perceive to be hidden, then you can buy the purported solution with minimal objections.

How ‘Lucky’ are you?

Today, many youths are gambling away their futures on sports betting.  It is a major daily mind game that is making the proprietors of these types of businesses very rich, yet rewarding very few participants over long periods of time.

When it comes to your career, chances are that you could be playing the gamble. You could be betting your success on luck. Probably, you are hoping that you will be lucky one day, get an interview and when that happens, you are betting that the interviewing panel would have grace and Mercy on you and give you an opportunity.

Who is in Control of Your Fate?

You see, hope alone is not a complete strategy! Grace and Mercy are not in your control. Contrary to popular belief, luck is not something that you experience by chance. No, luck is what you attract and create by a series of focused, sustained and consistent activities.

This brings us to this powerful “P” word. By now you must have guessed it. Let’s introduce you to someone who will mentor us today. He was born in 4BC and died in 65AD in Rome Italy. He was a Roman Stoic philosopher, statesman, dramatist, and in one work humorist, of the Silver Age of Latin literature. He was a tutor and later advisor to Emperor Nero. His name is Lius Seneca. This is what he said:

“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”

Your key word today is “Preparation”

You see, there are two things about you that a potential employer is looking for:

 

  • Facts about you
  • Stories about you

Unfortunately, many people think that just presenting the facts to the interview panel would be enough to get the job. You would be wrong. Facts are things like your age, your academic qualifications, your gender, your work experience, where you live, and so on.

Your Stories are the Difference Maker in Interviews

Stories however are what move many employers to hire you. What are the stories we are talking about? These are your interpretation of facts and the experiences you have created for yourself. The more you have of these, the more it increases your chances and your luck.

The only way you get this is through “Preparation”. Unfortunately, many people think that to prepare for an interview, you need to work on your CV and your presentation skills and so on. Today, Google is giving millions of CV templates for free and anybody can create a good CV in less than 20 minutes (but still we have hoards of people with pathetic CVs).

When you get into a job interview, the interviewing panel uses the facts found in your CV to ask you questions in order to know what kind of stories you are telling yourself and the world. The thing is that our general make-up is not merely of the facts of our lives, but of the stories that we tell of these facts.

So the question to you today is: How else, apart from crafting your CV are you preparing yourself to be lucky?

Here are some thought starters:

  • Your outlook on life: Preparation to succeed in life versus preparation to pass an interview
  • The kind of person you are becoming: Whom do you see yourself as and how are you showing it up in your life right now? Do you see yourself as a Manager? Are you already behaving like you are a Manager?
  • The kind of personal attributes that you are working on: Behaviors that you are expanding, stopping or starting.
  • Your Giving: What are you giving to the world right now? Internships? Volunteering? Personal business startup?
  • Your Growing: What are you reading? What seminars are you attending? What mastermind groups are you a part of?

The thing with preparation is that you might not see the results tomorrow or even next month. But when your chance comes, people will see that you are ready and that is how you can really get lucky in your job interviews. Over to you.

How To Find a Job When You Don’t Have Any Experience.

One of the most frustrating situations a job seeker can find themselves in is when they’re told that they don’t have enough experience for the role. Sigh… I’ve been there; maybe we all have at some stage. It’s very discouraging as it’s hard to get experience if no one is prepared to take a chance on you.

But there are some things that you can do to help get yourself out of this career pothole and back on track to success. Here are some of the things that helped me to move forward when I was in this situation.

convince

  1. Convince Yourself First

Start with yourself. If you don’t believe that you deserve the job then you won’t have a hope of convincing anyone else either. Work out why it is you want this job so badly? Hopefully, there’s more motivating you than a good salary!

  • Jot down what it is that interests you while capturing your passion & enthusiasm.
  • Link your skills & abilities to the job spec.
  • Note what unique qualities you personally can bring to the company & role.

By the time you have done this, you should believe that you, at least, deserve a shot at an interview for the role. But if you weren’t successful at convincing yourself that you’re ready for the job but know that you’d like to be, then start working on applicable skills that will help you to become ready.

strength

  1. Focus on Your Strengths

When your experience is limited, or non-existent, it can be a better idea to opt for a skills-based resume. This lets an employer see what you’re capable of and how it is relevant to the role, without necessarily needing to detail vast swathes of previous experience.

Everyone has strengths, but sometimes it isn’t clear how what we have done in the past is relevant to a new role. Chances are you do have experience in some areas that will stand to you in the position you’re currently applying for. When you’re compiling your resume focus on the strengths that you do have. If you have had any type of customer facing role in the past then customer service is a strength for your resume. What else? Do your friends cite you as a good listener or a problem solver? These are all useful skills that any employer wants to see on a resume.

  1. Examine the Job Path

There is a traditional route into every career; this is the way most school leavers train to do the job you want. Luckily, there are also usually back doors into careers for those of us who didn’t opt for this career from day one. Familiarize yourself with both the traditional route and the backdoor approaches; a career advisor can help you. You may not be in a position to retrain for a number of years, but the backdoor route may offer some feasible choices.

Perhaps there is a part-time course which will make you more appealing to recruiters. Alternatively, there might be an option to start work in a related role (that you might have more experience for) and transition into your perfect role within the same company. Some companies might even offer to pay for you to study at night so that you can make that move.

short

  1. Offer Your Services for Short-Term Work

For job seekers who need to start working as soon as possible, the suggestion that they make themselves available for internships or other types of unpaid work can be disappointing and downright impractical for some. Instead of committing yourself to a six or nine-month intern program, consider approaching individual employers to offer your services for a short period of voluntary work. When an organization is stuck for staff to carry out a specific task they might ask you to do it instead of hiring an expensive temporary worker from an agency. Giving your best while on these short assignments can showcase your abilities while you clock up some great referees for your resume. You can hand pick the companies yourself and remain in control if a position comes up.

mutual

  1. Network Your Way into a Position

This is an often overlooked way to give your job search a boost. If you are trying to break into a new career go to networking events where you can meet and talk to those who are already established in the industry. Go along with the simple objective of chatting with new people. Bring a business card along so that you can hand it out to your new connections. Explain that you are just starting out and that you’re excited to be there. Your personality & passion are your greatest tools in this situation. If you make a lasting impression with a well-placed industry professional you never know what might come of it.

Trying to land that first job when you’re straight out of school or college, or when you’ve made a career change can be difficult. It can require you to dig deep for self-belief, but when you know that you can do the job in question, it is merely a case of convincing other people that you can. This might take a little longer than we would like, but it can be done. Don’t give up, the more proactive you are in helping yourself, the more favorably potential employers will look on you.

How To Remain Relevant In Today’s Modern Workforce.

Imagine; you have qualified for a job in your dream company and you beat all other candidates.  On the day you report to work, you are so eager to start work right away. But when you meet your manager, they inform you that they do not have a job description for your role but they want you to show up every day and get paid at the end of the month. What would you end up doing in this moment and in the long run? I know this cannot go down well quietly. I picture this dialogue between the winning candidate and their manager:

“What do you mean by ‘We don’t have a job description for you’?”

“We simply don’t have one. What is not clear about that?”

“Everything! What did you expect the person you were interviewing to do after they got the job? Don’t you have anything like a contract?”

“Oh! I had forgotten that part. We do.” The manager pulls out a paper from the drawer and hands you a two-year contract for signing. But the contract still doesn’t outline any responsibility. The salary is good. Everything on the contract is fine but for one clause at the end which says, “The organization retains the right to terminate the contract anytime.”

What would you end up doing at this moment and in the long run? Would you storm out of the organization in protest, or would you stay around, do nothing and earn free money?

Well it sounds ridiculous that an organization can think about conducting interviews for a role for which they don’t have responsibilities for? Many organizations will advertise a job with a list of responsibilities the applicant will expect. It is the norm and that is why many job seekers wait until organizations figure out what they want and advertise it.

The mere fact that job seekers give organizations space to advertise jobs is in itself an indication that there are not so many people storming organizations to offer solutions. The needs of organizations are insatiable. Their needs are ever changing. The constant advancements in technology, globalization, communication channels, social lives of people, education and many other social and occupational lifestyles have kept organization on their toes. When I began working in 2007, social media was not so popular. When it became popular, it was regarded as a platform for idlers. Today every organization is striving to have a presence on social media platforms. Who knew about this change 10 years ago?

If you want to be relevant in today’s world, don’t live in the past. Don’t be stuck on how you used to do things before. In fact don’t even live in the present. The present is already congested and many people are already competing in it. Live in the future. Anticipate the needs of organizations in the future and solve them before they reach there. It is our cardinal duty as schooled professionals. We are educated to ease the pain that organizations go through. Organizations are not certain how they will be working 10 years from now. Trust me; in 10 years from now, there will be a significant difference from how work is being done today. That means their needs will also have shifted. This future is not so clear for so many organizations. But it has to be clear for us as professionals.

If you went around visiting organizations trying to find out what they really need, and how you can be helpful, they will inform you that they are fully staffed. But what if you visited the same organizations telling them you have a solution that can speed up their work, how many would be willing to listen? Or how many will tell you they are fully staffed?

Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Inc. and one of the greatest inventors the world will not easily erase from its history had this to say about finding out what your client’s next need is: “Some people say, ‘Give customers what they want.’ But that is not my approach. Our job is to figure out what they’re to want before they do. I think Henry Ford once said, “If I’d asked customers what they wanted, they would have told me, ‘A faster horse!’ People don’t know what they want until you show it to them. That’s why I never rely on market research. Our task is to read things that are not yet on the page.”

No one knows what they will need tomorrow. But if someone establishes themselves as a person who figures out our needs before we are aware of them, they establish themselves as leaders. You don’t need a job with a list of responsibilities to be relevant. All you need is a solution that solves a challenge in an organization.

TASK: Today, go to Google and search Organizational challenges in the 21st century. Pick out one challenge that you either have a passion for or one that falls within your academic area of expertise. Ask friends who are employed about how that challenge manifests in their organizations and how it is being addressed. If you have a different opinion on how to solve it, there you are. You have just landed yourself a job. Draft your solution and walk to these organizations and either ask for a job or opportunity to train concerned departments. If in your opinion, the challenge you chose is already solved, find another one. All the best!