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Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Tips for Dealing with the World Cup at Work

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Got any soccer fans in your office? Are you doing business or looking for a job internationally? Then you might want to pay attention to the following piece of information: the soccer World Cup starts next week. While that might not be of much interest to many in the U.S., it’s a really big deal just about everywhere else on the planet: so big, in fact, that more people are expected to watch it than the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

official world cup 2010 logo
So what’s that got to do with doing business or finding a job? A few things, actually, which are summarized as points to bear in mind below:

Check the schedule

Imagine if your team made it to the Super Bowl, and they held it in the middle of the day on a Thursday. Even if you went to work, you’d want to follow that game, right? That’s essentially the scenario desk-bound fans around the world face between June 11 and July 11 this year. The tournament is being held in South Africa, which poses obvious logistical challenges for fans not on the same continent. And—at least in the early stages—games take place seven days a week, meaning your overseas contacts may well be surreptitiously (or openly) watching the big game at what might seem like a ridiculous hour.

So before calling a client in Brazil or a potential job lead in England you probably want to check to see if their team (or a major contender for the title) is playing. Because even if you get them on the phone, or into a meeting, you probably won’t have their full attention. View the official Fifa schedule.

Be prepared to wait for things

It’s an established fact by now that productivity dips during major sporting events that coincide with office hours. Whether it’s March Madness, the opening rounds of a major golf tournament or a Grand Slam tennis event, people who follow the sport will likely have one eye—if not both of them—on the events. So that email you need an answer to might not get dealt with as urgently as you’re used to. The good news? Soccer is usually a quick affair: 90 minutes for the game, plus a half-time break. Even games that drag on to extra time and penalty shootout eliminations only last two and a half hours.

Follow the results

Sure, it might not be your favorite game, but there are a couple of good reasons to follow the results: first, the U.S. is participating. And, second, it never hurts to be able to congratulate or commiserate with a contact from elsewhere as their team progresses or gets eliminated. Which leads us to:

If you can’t beat them, join them

Especially if you’ll be spending time abroad during the World Cup. It’s going to be everywhere, so you may as well accept the reality. Who knows? You might even like it: there has to be some reason it’s the world favorite game, right?

Oh…and while you’re at it:

Call it “football”

At least when you’re talking to someone outside the US. That’s how it’s known almost everywhere else, and even if they know you call it “soccer,” they’ll appreciate the gesture.


Career Strategy: How to Keep Up with Change

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This pyramid, where you used to be on top has turned upside down. You have a choice: you can play in that game or you can not play in that game. But the game is happening.“—Andreas Weigend, speaking on the intersection between technology and marketing, and how the paradigm of learning within companies has shifted.

Specifically–as you’ll see if you watch the full video–Weigend is addressing the need for older employees to keep in touch with younger colleagues in order to learn about the emerging technologies they use. The idea, of course, is that the older employees can create value by leveraging those technologies in conjunction their own experience.

In case you’re wondering who this Andreas Weigend chap is, he’s a former Chief Scientist at Amazon.com, and a current leading academic in the field of marketing. He is addressing the upcoming World Innovation Forum–which Vault will be covering–on the following issues:

  • Marketing in the web 2.0: Beyond cutting costs and optimizing business processes
  • What are the implications for new business models products and services?
  • A world of abundance: Making the most of quantitative and qualitative data
  • Social networks and the new uses of data: The power of social recommendations and behavioral targeting
  • Lessons from the inside: What we can learn from Amazon

The Bar is a Beautiful Place (For Finding Work)

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Cocktail bar

AP Photo/Jens Meyer

Here’s a trend we’re hoping catches on: a blogger over at CNBC has discovered perhaps the ultimate resource for job-seekers: an unemployment center located in a bar.

The bad news (at least for most of us): the center at present is focusing solely on helping Irish immigrants to find work—an understandable decision given that it’s located in O’Casey’s Irish Pub on E.41st St in New York, and organized by a group of Irish ex-pats.

We’ve already seen the rise of the pink slip cocktail mixer—particularly on Wall Street—since the onset of the recession. But imagine the possibilities if the phenomenon should happen to catch on and spread to other groups. Think how much easier it would be to network in a venue that’s made for it—and where there’s a ready supply of social lubricant on tap. And think of the added benefits for recruiters—once they’d taken the mandatory training teaching them exactly what they can learn about someone from their drink, of course.

Example: ” The rum drinker is an adventurous type. Think Hunter Thompson. Think Jack Kerouac. Think hot summer day with the sun setting.”

In other words, not the best choice if you’re trying to land a position in, say, accounting compliance.

Another example, from a different article by the same writer as the last: “Beer is the most ambiguous of drinks. It is the everyman drink. So it’s sometimes hard to decode exactly who the beer drinker is.”

One to open up with, perhaps, as you get to know whether your recruiter is looking for the sort of “traditionalist” who drinks gin or is more in the market for a martini-sipping “sophisticate.”

Let us know your thoughts: have you gone/would you go to a bar to look for a job? What signals do people’s drink choices send out? And—perhaps most importantly—are there any definite no-no’s in terms of bar etiquette that one would want to keep in mind when trying to land, or just get some networking done, in a pub setting?

Vault.com Offers Free Job Search/Career Management Webinar – April 30, 2010, 12-1pm

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Despite news that first-time jobless claims have taken a dip last week, the national unemployment rate continues to hold steady at 9.7%.  Finding a job is still a priority for so many Americans and Vault.com is taking another step in its quest to help them get back to work with another in a series of broad-based free webinars that will allow job seekers to ask former recruiters anything.

The webinar, slated for Friday, April 30, 2010, from 12 to 1 p.m. coinciding with the traditional lunch break, is designed to provide career information, advice and resources to help students entering the workforce and employed professionals land their next job.  The monthly free webinars offer users a taste of what is offered during the more focused webinars offered each week at $27.  Last month, over 1,000 participants signed up for the free career guidance. You must register to participate.  Go to http://www.vault.com/SixFigureStart.html.

“Despite signs of an economic recovery, job seekers still find themselves in a challenging and highly competitive marketplace.  Vault has a long history of providing the critical insight and information to enable high potential candidates to build and execute a well planned job search strategy.  Vault’s proven tools help candidates identify the right industry, the right role and the right company,” said Claude Sheer, Vault CEO.  “Our career experts will pack this one hour session with experiences and strategies built over a combined 40 years of career management experience.”

Vault career experts and SixFigureStart co-founders Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio and Caroline Ceniza-Levine are former Fortune 500 recruiters who have led staffing groups at Citigroup, Warner-Lambert-Pfizer, Merrill Lynch and Time Inc.  Together, the duo will be on hand to provide resume writing, interview preparation, and other job search-related advice.  They are prepared to answer the toughest job search quandaries for those at the executive level to those beginning their first job search.

Participants can look forward to discovering answers to some of the following questions:

  • I am losing jobs after getting to the final round of the interview process.  What am I doing wrong?
  • How do I respond when a job posting asks for a salary history and requirements?
  • I am working full-time.  What’s the best way to manage time during a part-time job search?
  • I am miserable in my new job after less than six months.  How can I leave without damaging future prospects?

“The job search is tough and only candidates with exceptional job search skills are getting placed,” said Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio.  “Taking part in these webinars will give you the edge needed to beat the competition, and there is a lot of competition out there, from the employed to the unemployed; and let’s not forget the college graduates that will be hitting the job marketplace in May.  Get all the critical advice you need during your lunch break.”

While this webinar is free, space is limited and filled on a first come, first served basis.  Vault encourages all participants to go to http://www.vault.com/SixFigureStart.html for more information and to register immediately as each webinar is announced.  Submit your questions in advance to info@sixfigurestart.com or pose them during the webinar.  Questions submitted in advance will be answered first.

Tweeting Your Job Out the Window

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Remember the sheaf of papers you signed off on when you started work? Somewhere in there was your company’s official Ethics Policy. Yeah, feel the yawn coming? And that’s why nine out of 10 new hires simply sign off on that paper without given it more than a cursory glance. But today this policy may be under attack.

At an event hosted by The Conference Board last week on Business Ethics & Compliance, I heard ethics and compliance officers from different industries discuss their industry-respective takes on regulatory reform and challenges of instilling ethical behavior in the workplace. And somewhere in the middle there was suddenly a confession from one of the panelists. One that surprised me not only because of their acknowledged bafflement with it but also what followed as an honest confession of not knowing how to deal with it. They were referring to the new phenomenon called social media.

With Facebook and Twitter blurring the line between personal and private, companies have to deal with a new challenge for their ethics policies, including confidentiality, privacy policies, and reduced productivity. How much company information is it okay for someone to post on their Facebook status, if at all? Is discussing their daily work on a public forum considered a breach of confidentiality? And what if this includes a client name or a product in the making? Lawsuit written all over it?

But the No. 1 concern, according to the panel—which comprised of ethics officers from PricewaterhouseCoopers, Lincoln Financial and PepsiCo—was where to draw the line between personal and professional. One of the key speakers was Jude Curtis, the chief ethics and compliance officer at PricewaterhouseCoopers, who discussed his team’s efforts in putting together an official “Social Media Policy.”  Curtis also added that PwC considered their employees’ presence on social networking sites serious enough to set up a Social Media Steering Group, which is tasked with continually reviewing their policy as the field evolves.

Pepsi’s VP of Compliance, Stephen Noughton added yet another dimension to the discussion by expressing his concern: Does a potential candidate’s presence on social media deserve a place in the traditional background check? While the jury is out on this one, as a jobseeker, does that worry us? With industry experts citing social media key for your career success, I’m willing to bet yes on that one.

Finally, the last segment to this conversation:  We are all asked to sign a “Code of Conduct” at work, however, what happens when we flip this? What about the board signing an ethics policy that asks them to adhere to the triple bottom line principal when making any strategic decisions? Sound untraditional? Well, it is, but it might not be for too long as corporate social responsibility gets concretely defined across board rooms and shifts from pure advocacy quests to instrumentally changing strategic direction at corporations.

Ethics will soon have to bridge the gap from being solely an individual responsibility to a conscious common denominator in our business decisions as well. If you understand business terminology better, it’s also called sustainable capitalism.

Posted by Aman Singh Das, In Good Company

Five Upcoming Green Career Events You Can’t Miss

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Getting a job in the green economy means networking. After all people hire people, not resumes. When it comes to green conferences there are several upcoming events that I can’t wait to check out. If you want a green job, these are the events you should be attending. Not only will you learn a lot about going green, but you’ll make some great contacts to grow your green network.

1. Good Jobs Green Jobs

When: May 4-6, 2010
Where: Washington D.C.
Website

This event is expected to attract almost 4,000 people and features several speakers from the federal government including Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Colorado Governor Bill Ritter. The conference takes place over three days and feature several workshops and tracks centered on growing green jobs. Registration is $165 for two-and-a-half days of more than 100 workshops, the Green Innovation Expo (with dozens of companies) on May 5th, and Green Jobs Advocacy Day on May 6th. Click here to hear a podcast about this event.

2. Windpower 2010

When: May 23-26, 2010
Where: Dallas
Website

Green Jobs

This is perhaps the biggest event to be held all year. According to their website, last year’s event drew 23,000 attendees and 1,280 exhibitors. Former President Bush is the featured speaker. After looking at the speaker and exhibitor list, anybody who is anyone is going to be there. Texas is the wind power capital of the U.S. (about 20 percent of the state’s power comes from wind). If you want to work in wind this is the conference for you.

3. The National Solar Conference

When: May 17-22, 2010
Where: Phoenix
Website

Arizona is mad for solar so it’s no surprise this event takes place in Phoenix, organized by the American Solar Energy Society. According to the website the show is now in its 39th year, the SOLAR 2010 program will be developed by solar energy experts in all topical areas—technology, buildings, policy, professional education, workforce development and consumer education. Many sessions will offer continuing education credits for architects, installers, engineers, and more.

4. Alternative Fuels & Vehicles National Conference + Expo

When: May 9-12, 2010
Where: Las Vegas
Website

We all know that electric, hybrid and hydrogen cars are coming and this conference is the preview to that world. AF&V 2010 showcases natural gas, ethanol, biodiesel, propane, electricity, and hydrogen, and their companion vehicles. The Conference embraces advanced technologies that result in fuel efficiency, petroleum displacement and emissions improvements. Included are hybrid-electric and plug-in hybrid technologies; blends, including hydrogen; fuel cells; and, idle-reduction devices. All of these are featured as part of the diverse program, Expo Hall and Ride-n-Drive.

5. Green Buildings NY

When: June 16-17, 2010
Where: New York, NY
Website

Serving the world’s largest real estate market, GreenBuildingsNY educates building and design professionals on the latest innovations around green products, services and regulations. Over 500 vendors will be in the exhibit hall at the Javits center.

Visit the event section of GreenJobSpider.com for a complete list of 2010 green conferences.

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—Chris Russell is a ten year veteran of the online job search business. His latest project is GreenJobSpider.com: the search engine for green jobs.

Insider Job Search and Interview Tips from Top Recruiters

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While the national unemployment rate remains at 9.7%, career experts are noticing more activity of late with many companies looking to hire in anticipation of a prolonged recovery.  But in a difficult economy, these same companies are being extra selective as to who they let in the front door, and only those with excellent job search skills are getting hired.  To address the needs of job seekers, Vault.com and SixFigureStart teamed up to offer a free webinar earlier today to provide resume writing, interview preparation, and other job search-related advice from Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio and Caroline Ceniza-Levine, former Fortune 500 recruiters who have led staffing groups at Citigroup, Warner-Lambert-Pfizer, Merrill Lynch and Time Inc.

Straight into the webinar, Caroline squashed the notion that there is a hostile relationship between recruiters and job seekers.  She assured the 1,163 webinar attendees that recruiters want applicants to get the job and informed listeners that they are 80% responsible for the outcome of the interview.  She added that most recruiters can tell within the first few minutes of an interview whether they would hire that person. That’s bad news if an applicant is a late starter or has a tendency to ramble for 15 minutes before hitting the real meat of what makes them a good prospect.

For those that do get past the initial stages, Connie also addressed the ego issue where applicants feel they are almost guaranteed to get the job once they get into the final round of interviews. She noted that if four people are considered perfect for the job, they are all on equal ground with clean slates heading into the decision-making rounds.

In between the first and final rounds, both Caroline and Connie expressed the need to maintain contact.  Caroline expressed shock at the questions of some guests who wondered if a thank you note is necessary after an interview, a telling sign that even the obvious rules are not always obvious to all job seekers.  Caroline believes the thank you note is more than a simple showing of appreciation, but an opportunity to take the discussion from the interview to a whole new level.  In addition, she added that it is not only important to stay in contact with the recruiter, but with everyone involved in the decision-making process.  While applicants are 80% responsible for the outcome of an interview, nullifying the 20% that is out of your hands is just as important.  Anything an applicant can do in the “white-space” between one interview and the next can eliminate the “out of sight, out of mind” philosophy some may have toward you.

On the networking front, Connie noted that it is always important to stay in close touch with notable contacts, from parents to former professors to a friend from the gym – whether it be a warm holiday greeting or a question about their plans for the summer; stay on their radar.

Here are more tips from the webinar:

Top 5 Needed Strengths for the Interview: Analytical Skills, Communication Skills, Teamwork, Integrity, Creative Problem Solving – applicants must be prepared to demonstrate examples of each.

Tips on References: Most applicants don’t think about references until asked.  They should be thought about well in advance – who will best be able to promote you in the eyes of those responsible for hiring you.  According to Caroline and Connie, it is ok to coach your references who may not know exactly what specific examples to address in order to help you get the job.

Four Things You Need To Get the Job: Networking Smarts, Excellent Research Skills, Strong Marketing Materials, Quality Follow-up Skills.

Volunteer vs. Temp Work: You do not have to say you volunteered at a company.  The substance of the work you performed is more important.

Salary Negotiation: According to Connie, everything is up for negotiation and she has never seen anyone withdraw a job if someone asked for more money.

Cheat Resume Trick: Put keywords at the bottom of your resume, such as investment banking or private equity, and then turn that type white, so they are invisible to the naked eye, but viewable by programs filtering out candidates based on keywords and advancing those who meet the criteria to the next level.

To hear more from the seminar, including additional advice, explanations and helpful anecdotes, download the webinar at http://ds1.downloadtech.net/cn1086/audio/15842354671239-001.mp3

Vault is offering additional webinars.  Those who would like more pointed advice about the interview process should check out the following two offerings (note, these are not free webinars and cost $27 to participate):

Master the Interview, Part 1:  How to Ace Any Interview – Thursday, April 1st from 12-1pm EST

Get a recruiter’s perspective on how the process really works

  • What are the top 5 things you should do during an interview?
  • What are the biggest mistakes and how to avoid them?
  • What are the different types of interviews?
  • How can you ace any interview and get to the 2nd round?

Presenter:       Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio

Cost:      $27, includes live call and downloadable Mp3 recording

Click here to register

Master the Interview, Part 2:  12 Most Common Interview Questions Decoded Friday, April 9th from 12-1pm EST

What are the 12 most popular interview questions and what do employers really want to know when they ask them?

  • There is an endless amount of questions you might be asked.  What are the 3 types of questions and the best approach for each;
  • You know you need to give examples.  What are the 5 pieces of information that make up a comprehensive example;
  • Interviews are stressful!  What strategies and tips can help you be your best right at the start of the interview?

Presenter: Caroline Ceniza-Levine

Cost:      $27, includes live call and downloadable Mp3 recording

Click here to register

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