44% Of Employees “Unsatisfied”

Wednesday, 30. May 2012

According to a recent article at Forbes.com, 44% of employees are unsatisfied with their current jobs. As Susan Adams writes in her article, “New Survey: Majority of Employees Dissatisfied”, even while unhappy, many employees feel stuck, afraid to make a career change, due largely to the current job economy.

Most articles you will read about professionally written resumes will focus on how to get a potential employer’s attention. Very few give tips on making sure the right employer pays attention…and the wrong ones don’t.

For instance, many people say that I am a team player. But really, that is just a code word for loyalty. Not everyone plays well in a team and not every workplace is good for team players. Some people work better on their own, and some workplaces leave employees to work on their own. Some individual bosses like to micromanage, while others like to give direction and kick you out of the nest.

In order to find a work environment that will make you happy you need to be upfront, honest, and specific about your preferred working style. Many new hires have the tendency to try to be the type of worker that they think the employer is looking for, even if they know it will not make them happy in the long run.

Catering your perceived working style and preferences to a new employer will not help you to attract the right kind of employers, the ones you would actually enjoy working for.

By not being upfront about your work environment preferences you will likely become one of the 44% – dissatisfied with the one thing you spend the most waking hours doing, your job.

Billboard Cover Letter: When A Resume Is Just Not Enough

Wednesday, 9. May 2012

Let’s face it, with the ever-present recession and slowed economy, finding a job is tough. So how do you stand out from the crowd? A professionally written resume is a good start, but what happens when a resume is just not enough? Well it’s time to get a little creative.

Take these job seekers for example. Tifani and David have gone above and beyond to get noticed with their billboard, which was placed off of Hwy 80 in Sacramento, CA:

Tifani Goldsmith, a Sacramento native, states that the billboard idea originally came from David, when they both agreed that the investment to market themselves was priceless.

A billboard can be a very creative way to get the word out that you are looking for work when a resume is not enough. Think of it as a unique, if not very expensive, cover letter. But as Tifani pointed out, it can be well worth the investment, especially if it only takes a month instead of four months to land a job.

Since both Tifani and David’s websites are no longer active we can only hope that their investment paid off.

Pasha Stocking was also ‘unemployed and seeking employment’:

After being unemployed for over 10 months, she decided to take matters into her own hands. She created a website and rented a 14×48 foot billboard that was located on Interstate 95 in Fairfield County, CT. Although the campaign was a media success, Pasha was unable to gain ‘suitable employment’ and decided to venture out on her own. She now runs her own Public Relations and Marketing firm called PR Bar.

Although we are unsure if Tifani and David’s investment actually paid off, Pasha’s billboard did not seem to attract the type of work that she was looking for. So what was wrong with these billboards? The features, benefits, and the unique selling propositions are all “I am unemployed”. You wouldn’t focus your cover letter or resume on your status as being unemployed. Why not put a more effective message, like “Hire Me – results driven sales manager between assignments” or “Hire Me – full-time accountant available immediately”.

Here is an example of billboard that sends the right message:

Mark Heuer rented his billboard in, what he describes as a time of “desperation as he was seeking his next career opportunity”. The beginning of the economic downturn in 2008 was hard on everyone, but instead of letting it overtake him Mark came up with a creative way to change careers with his 16×60 foot billboard that was located in Milwaukee, WI, and with the right message, he successfully made that change.

Are Online MBA Programs the Real Deal?

Thursday, 3. May 2012

When you’re enrolled in online MBA classes, you can pace yourself. Put dinner in the oven, park the kids in front of their homework, and sit down to your computer. Gas prices don’t bother you; you’re not going anywhere. But is the degree you earn this way legitimate; is it worth as much as a degree you would earn on a university campus?

Experts say yes, and increasingly so, though online degrees given by traditional brick and mortar schools may be better for your resume over degrees given by for-profit online schools. Overall, PayScale says, people with online MBAs earn as much as people with traditional MBAs, and there may even be some advantages to the online process above and beyond convenience. While there is a sacrifice of face-to-face time with peers and faculty, the online MBA might be a solid career move for anyone who can’t afford the time and money involved in getting a traditional degree.

One disadvantage of for-profit schools such as the University of Phoenix and Kaplan University is that they are not, USA Today says, accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), which the academic community looks to as the benchmark for business school quality.

But several traditional schools which are accredited by the AACSB have developed online programs in recent years. Online programs offered by the University of North Carolina, Pennsylvania State, and Indiana University, among others, are comparable to the programs these schools offer on campus; the admissions standards are the same, or in the case of Penn State, more rigorous for online. The programs are also generally taught by the same professors who teach on-campus courses, in the interest of maintaining consistency between graduates. And, apparently, a diploma from such a program usually won’t indicate whether it was received for online work, which does away with one potential drawback.

But there are advantages to all online degrees. Online learning, which requires self-motivation, is seen by many as more rigorous than traditional learning, and it draws a type of student who is more disciplined. According to wahm.com, while the interactive classroom environment of traditional programs, where students may work together on assignments, mimics the real world, so, in our technological age, does online learning. Students interact with each other and professors by e-mail, chat, and sometimes telephone, much as a business executive might interact with clients from his office.

Chris Consorte, who, according to PayScale, teaches both online and traditional MBA students, says that in his experience there’s no difference in salaries. “I find it depends on the person. A very aggressive student usually leverages his or her degree and finds a job making more and more money.” As time goes on, online MBAs will probably be seen as more and more legitimate by employers, making the convenience of pursuing one even more advantageous.

Guest post by Drew Hendricks, who is a really neato dude (he even admits it himself).  Catch him at @AdvertisingBlog on Twitter