Character as Well as Capability

Character as Well as Capability
Recently, an employment consultant was discussing a new trend in job interviewing. She noted that in this age of cookie-cutter, online resumes and responses, employers are looking for a way to differentiate one capable candidate from another. The answer may be character. How can character be defined and determined? How can you, as a candidate for a job prepare for this new interview thread? Several questions may provide some guidance: • Tell me about an autobiography you have read? What ... Read more
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How to Leave a Job…and Your Work Friends

How to Leave a Job…and Your Work Friends
“Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver, the other gold.” —Joseph Parry (1841-1903) You knew the time was right to leave your current position, and you worked hard to find a new job that moved your career forward. Despite the rightness of your decision, it does mean change, and even positive change can be difficult to manage. You’ve adjusted your schedule, your commute, and your work content.  Now what do you do about your work friendships? • First of all, ... Read more
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Disappointment and How to Deal With It

Disappointment and How to Deal With It
Do any of these situations sound familiar? •You get turned down at your first choice graduate school. •You find your partner is still texting his ex. •You fail a required licensure exam. •You are passed over for promotion. •Your sibling swears she no longer drinks then gets stopped for a DUI. •You bet money you couldn’t afford on the office pool, and your team loses. What happened in these situations? Could your disappointment have been predicted or even prevented? What can you do to ... Read more
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Are you a Conflict Avoider, Enabler, or Intervener?

Are you a Conflict Avoider, Enabler, or Intervener?
Each of us responds to conflict in our own way. Many people are uncomfortable with conflict. They try hard to avoid it, sometimes even denying that it exists. Others see conflict as a necessary part of everyday life, especially work life, and they become fairly adept at defusing it or negotiating compromises. Others are excellent manipulators, and they attempt to resolve the conflict by manipulating others or the situation, sometimes in an underhanded way. Still others use the power of ... Read more
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Every Pitch Has a Purpose

Every Pitch Has a Purpose
Recently I was watching a high school baseball game. One young pitcher was quite talented, and several people were talking about how well he used and sequenced different types of pitches (for those of you who don’t follow baseball — curved balls, change-up, fast balls, etc.). One man made the statement, “Every pitch has a purpose.” That made me think about the various types of pitches and how important they can be in our professional careers. We have all heard ... Read more
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Tell Me About Your Health Insurance

Tell Me About Your Health Insurance
You have just been offered a new job. You ask about the salary, the probation period, and vacation time. The human resources representative mentions there is also  a health insurance plan, but you are young and healthy, and it doesn’t seem nearly as important as the other benefits. Aren’t most health plans fairly alike any way? Actually, no. Health plans are quite variable. As someone prominent said quite recently, “Who knew health insurance was so complex?” You may ... Read more
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Surviving a Lunch Job Interview

Surviving a Lunch Job Interview
Job interviews are hard. You should  be at the top of your game  regarding good communication and careful self-promotion. You should research and choose astute and insightful questions. You need to appear interested, but not overly eager, and you need to blend respect and engagement. No matter how hard a regular office interview is, being interviewed during a meal adds a layer of stress and caution. Interaction during a meal may appear less formal, but you should never think it is less ... Read more
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Is Your Stress Real or Manufactured?

Is Your Stress Real or Manufactured?
April is Stress Awareness Month (who knew?). I am a bit surprised that we need a special month to highlight stress. It seems like stress is front and center in our lives on a daily basis. In addition, there is a huge anti-stress industry out there that bombards us with options and products from massages to gyms to meditation to essential oils. There are many causes of stress — financial stress, relationship stress, and work stress are big ones. Often  stress in one area compounds ... Read more
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Is Integrity Dead?

Is Integrity Dead?
We witness more and more national events that lack integrity, that include cheating, untruths, and cover-ups. Even concepts like “fake news” and “alternative facts” have crept into our daily lexicon. We have experts denying the importance of climate change. We turn a blind eye toward starving children in Africa and other countries. We revise standards downward as opportune. What we see in the media makes us wonder if anything is real anymore. We see manufacturing ... Read more
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Expertise: Do You Really Have Any?

Expertise: Do You Really Have Any?
There’s a new book out called “The Death of Expertise: The Campaign Against Established Knowledge and Why it Matters” by Tom Nichols (2017). In it Nichols states: “These are dangerous times. Never have so many people had access to so much knowledge , and yet been so resistant to learning anything.” “That reminded me of Malcolm Gladwell’s book from a decade ago (2008) that dealt with becoming an expert. In “Outliers: The Story of ... Read more
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