April 9, 2014
By Hannah Hamilton
Monster Contributing Writer
When you’re writing your resume, it’s best to avoid the cliche words that hiring managers and recruiters see over and over again. Even if you feel the terms are accurate, there is usually a livelier, more original way to describe yourself.
Here are five words and phrases you should avoid putting on your resume.
Describing vaguely positive traits in a resume doesn’t prove your worth and may even undermine your value as a candidate in failing to show how you’re different. Focus on concrete skills and accomplishments instead of relying on personal description through adjectives, says David Allocco, a business development and operations executive at PierceGray, Inc.
“I would avoid the term ‘hard worker’ as it’s general and something anyone could apply to themselves,” Allocco says. “Instead, highlight actual accomplishments and results you can show off to potential employers. They like seeing data-driven numbers as opposed to general blanket statements.”
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March 31, 2014
By Sheila Moss : Source : The Citizen
Why are we always in a hurry? We get up in the morning and hurry to get ready for work even if it means falling over the dog and drinking instant breakfast on the road while talking on the cell phone about things that can’t wait until we get to work.
Of course, everyone on the interstate is in a hurry. Why are they in such a hurry to get to work? They must like working a whole lot better than I do. But I have to hurry even if I don’t want to so I don’t get rear-ended, dirty looks, or horns blown at me to get out of the way. Speed is often a contributor to accidents. But we speed, risk traffic tickets, accidents, and injury just because we are in a hurry.
At work, we hurry through the day. No matter how much we have to do there is never enough time. We hurry through our “to do” list to get to the next task, and then hurry through it as well. Work-related stress increases chance of stroke, heart attack, and even death, but we don’t have time to worry about that as we are in a hurry.
Maybe we are in a hurry to get to lunch. We didn’t eat much breakfast because we didn’t have time. Fast food is the most popular kind of eating out because it doesn’t take as long. We hurry through lunch so we can get back to work.
The same people that are in a hurry to get to work in the morning are also in a hurry to get back home at night. And we thought they liked work. But it seems they only like being in a hurry. Traffic is a nightmare with everyone rushing to get home. What do they have to do at home… Probably nothing.
We usually don’t want to take time to cook dinner. If we cook, it is most likely some of the convenience foods that are at least partly prepared in advance.
These are better because we can fix them fast and get the food ready in a hurry. We can no longer imagine life without a microwave to fix food in a hurry.
What if we are in too big a hurry to cook and decide to eat out? If the wait is too long, we look for another place. If the food doesn’t arrive quickly we mumble and complain because it is taking too long. Good service has come to be just as important as good food, and good service means timely service for busy people in a hurry.
Of course, if there are errands to do, we hurry to get them done so we can get back home in a hurry. If we shop, we do it in a hurry and complain about waiting in lines. Some stores have express lines for people who are in a hurry and didn’t buy much. Nowadays, they even have do-it-yourself checkout for the people who are in too much of a hurry to go through the express lines.
We live life in the fast lane, always in a hurry. We use email and send instant messages. We don’t have time to answer the phone so we let the voice mail get it. We have rush hours, express mail, jiffy lubs, instant rebates, overnight delivery, quick shops, and speedy service. Why? Because we are in a hurry! We live in a fast age, information flies, and so do we. In spite of all the time we save, we never seem to have enough.
And that’s why I’m going to quit now. I have deadline to meet and – you guessed it – I’m in a hurry.
March 28, 2014
It was before i stepped out of the room when i heard a heard voice calling my name, i was not even sure if my name was the one called and spotted from the crowd of wonderful and determined group of talented individuals.
I nearly actually forgot that i already signed up for a stand up poem reciting, it wasn`t a competition but it looked like one when every one who went on stage was as better than the previous one.
I struggled to understand what i actually had in mind before i start presenting my own short poem that i wrote within five minutes when i entered the stand up poem reciting room.
Every one seemed so content and that gave me the courage to stand, despite being scared what other people would think of my poem which was
“Hard times are coming
the beginning of the battle
soon you must tie your shoe lace
many comes with the same aim
shooting for your replacement
fighting is the sole way
I’m still too young to die
poorly the light of the future burns
ashes block our eyes
who is to clean the mess, the roads to clean
remain of the veterans,claim for their rights
their wishes and ambition died right after
who is to take the dying wishes to paradise?
i`m still too young to die
whoever tried, ended up in hands of the few
no democracy and rights to live
choices are made by strong people
that we follow what they say
they become fat for our works
production of our own we get nothing out of it
who is to protect our production?
I’m still to young to die
few take offices for the hidden interests
education look for a patriot to take
no one seems strong,to take it to the field
it is being used for personal stuff
is it really the meaning of it
tree fruits encourages many
knowing not that they are seasonally
many brave minds are blocked , who is to unblock them?
I`m still too young to die
some strength died for many blood
spirits that left them have no home
looking for a successor no one comes
fear of death engrave our rights
corrupt of leaders ,poverty prevails
revolution is the solution
new faces on the island,.save us all
who is to take us all into that island?
I’m still too young to die.”
Well, afterward the crowd clapped at last, thought it was lame for every one to ditch the truth that we are all living, the truth that we do not owe anyone anything but ourselves.
Time to letting ourselves stand and fight for what we believe in instead of fighting so hard to achieve someone else dream, it feels irresponsible pushing someone too hard towards something they do not often get along with. The reality will always prevail, you cant grow seed on the tarmac road is the truth and that will never change.
Its time to stand up now and do what makes you happy, remember, we all are too young to die, Live your moments, its either now or never.
March 13, 2014
Distractions are more costly than you think. Here are four ways to root them out of your day.
How many times a day would you say you’re distracted from your work? Five? Ten? Any idea how costly these distractions really are?
A 2007 study by Basex estimated that distractions cost U.S. businesses $588 billion per year. And what with the popularity of mobile devices making it much too easy to disrupt anyone’s day, my guess is it’s much higher by now.
So what do you think these distractions amount to in time and money, never mind sanity? Do you believe that a five-minute interruption robs you of only five minutes? Nope. It takes the human brain about seven minutes to refocus, so you’re looking at a whopping 12 minutes.
If that doesn’t seem like much, look at it this way. Let’s say that you allow employees, clients, friends, and family members free access to you all day long. And let’s say that you keep your email and social media sites open while you work. I’m going to take a modest guess of this leading to about 20 distractions a day. Now I’ll estimate that you get side-tracked for about four minutes each time you drift off course, (laughable, I know). Add those seven minutes it takes to regain your focus and that’s over three-and-a-half hours a day. To be exact, based on 260 work days in a year, it’s 952 hours. Imagine what you could do with some of that time back in your day.
Realistically, many of these interruptions are legit and need to be addressed, and many do not. But you get the point. These phone calls, knocks on the door, and your constant attention to social media and email are costing you–big time.
So what can you do about it? It’s not just a matter of designating times to check emails and return calls. That would be far too easy. What about all of those people who “need” you all day long? As I tell my clients, you teach people how to treat you. When you develop the pattern of taking calls from mom, giving clients and employees instant access to you, and jumping to attention every time your text notification sings to you, you’re teaching people that it’s OK to interrupt you as often as they please.
Now it’s not going to be easy to change their behavior, or your own, but the payoff is well worth it. Here are a few things that may help.
Keep employees and contractors well informed.
If you have standard operating procedures in place, along with scheduled meetings and project guidelines, your team should be able to find most of their answers without interrupting you. Get employees involved in creating these documents so they are well aware of their existence. When someone knocks on your door for an answer to something that is already in writing don’t give it to them. Politely request that they check the manual instead and that they continue to do so in the future. Also let them know when you cannot be interrupted and give yourself two-hour windows of time to focus on your projects.
Explain the new rules to friends and family.
Those who care for you will understand what’s at stake here. Tell them that you are excited about all of the opportunities to grow your business and that you intend to get hyper-focused. Let them know that they can help. To make it easier for them offer a window of time during the day when you’ll be available for a brief chat, like after hours.
Create customer service policies.
How many large corporations can you call and gain instant access to the owner or CEO? Right. So why do you give your clients instant access to you? Think of the message it sends. If you make the mistake of being at your clients’ beck and call they will perceive that you don’t have any other business. Let them leave a voicemail and designate a time or two each day to return those calls. Another advantage here is that you won’t be caught off guard. Typically, they will leave some hint about what they want to discuss and you will have the answers when you return their call.
Understand your avoidance tendencies.
You may tell yourself that you have to stay on top of email and social media updates all day long, but I’m going to challenge you on that. In my experience most entrepreneurs use this misguided belief to avoid doing what they should be doing. Keep your action list up to date to make it easier to choose your next task and when you get into the avoidance mode take a moment to consider why. Once you face your avoidance head on it may kick you into a higher gear. If this issue surfaces frequently, it’s time for a coach.
March 5, 2014
It was an unusually busy day for the hospital staff on the sixth floor. Ten new patients were admitted and Nurse Susan spent the morning and afternoon checking them in.
Her friend Sharron, an aide, prepared ten rooms for the patients and made sure they were comfortable. After they were finished she grabbed Sharron and said, “We deserve a break. Let’s go eat.”
Sitting across from each other in the noisy cafeteria, Susan noticed Sharron absently wiping the moisture off the outside of her glass with her thumbs. Her face reflected a weariness that came from more than just a busy day.
“You’re pretty quiet. Are you tired, or is something wrong?” – Susan asked.
Sharron hesitated. However, seeing the sincere concern in her friend’s face, she confessed, “I can’t do this the rest of my life, Susan. I have to find a higher-paying job to provide for my family. We barely get by. If it weren’t for my parents keeping my kids, well, we wouldn’t make it.”
Susan noticed the bruises on Sharron’s wrists peeking out from under her jacket.
“What about your husband?”
“We can’t count on him. He can’t seem to hold a job. He’s got . . . problems.”
“Sharron, you’re so good with patients, and you love working here. Why don’t you go to school and become a nurse? There’s financial help available, and I’m sure your parents would agree to keep the kids while you are in class.”
“It’s too late for me, Susan; I’m too old for school. I’ve always wanted to be a nurse, that’s why I took this job as an aide; at least I get to care for patients.”
“How old are you?” – Susan asked.
“Let’s just say I’m thirty-something.”
Susan pointed at the bruises on Sharron’s wrists. “I’m familiar with ‘problems’ like these. Honey, it’s never too late to become what you’ve dreamed of. Let me tell you how I know.”
Susan began sharing a part of her life few knew about. It was something she normally didn’t talk about, only when it helped someone else.
“I first married when I was thirteen years old and in the eighth grade.”
“My husband was twenty-two. I had no idea he was violently abusive. We were married six years and I had three sons. One night my husband beat me so savagely he knocked out all my front teeth. I grabbed the boys and left.
“At the divorce settlement, the judge gave our sons to my husband because I was only nineteen and he felt I couldn’t provide for them. The shock of him taking my babies left me gasping for air. To make things worse, my ex took the boys and moved, cutting all contact I had with them.
“Just like the judge predicted, I struggled to make ends meet. I found work as a waitress, working for tips only. Many days my meals consisted of milk and crackers. The most difficult thing was the emptiness in my soul. I lived in a tiny one-room apartment and the loneliness would overwhelm me. I longed to play with my babies and hear them laugh.”
She paused. Even after four decades, the memory was still painful. Sharron’s eyes filled with tears as she reached out to comfort Susan. Now it didn’t matter if the bruises showed.
Susan continued, “I soon discovered that waitresses with grim faces didn’t get tips, so I hid behind a smiling mask and pressed on. I remarried and had a daughter. She became my reason for living, until she went to college.
“Then I was back where I started, not knowing what to do with myself – until the day my mother had surgery. I watched the nurses care for her and thought: I can do that. The problem was, I only had an eighth-grade education. Going back to high school seemed like a huge mountain to conquer. I decided to take small steps toward my goal. The first step was to get my GED. My daughter used to laugh at how our roles reversed. Now I was burning the midnight oil and asking her questions.”
Susan paused and looked directly in Sharron’s eyes. “I received my diploma when I was forty-six years old.”
Tears streamed down Sharron’s cheeks. Here was someone offering the key that might unlock the door in her dark life.
“The next step was to enroll in nursing school. For two long years I studied, cried and tried to quit. But my family wouldn’t let me. I remember calling my daughter and yelling, ‘Do you realize how many bones are in the human body, and I have to know them all! I can’t do this, I’m forty-six years old!’ But I did. Sharron, I can’t tell you how wonderful it felt when I received my cap and pin.”
Sharron’s lunch was cold, and the ice had melted in her tea by the time Susan finished talking. Reaching across the table and taking Sharron’s hands, Susan said, “You don’t have to put up with abuse. Don’t be a victim – take charge. You will be an excellent nurse. We will climb this mountain together.”
Sharron wiped her mascara-stained face with her napkin. “I had no idea you suffered so much pain. You seem like someone who has always had it together.”
“I guess I’ve developed an appreciation for the hardships of my life,” Susan answered. “If I use them to help others, then I really haven’t lost a thing. Sharron, promise me that you will go to school and become a nurse. Then help others by sharing your experiences.”
Sharron promised. In a few years she became a registered nurse and worked alongside her friend until Susan retired. Sharron never forgot her colleague or the rest of her promise.
Now Sharron sits across the table taking the hands of those who are bruised in body and soul, telling them, “It’s never too late. We will climb this mountain together.”
By Linda Carol Apple
Chicken Soup for the Soul: Living Your Dreams