Guest Post: Advancing Your Career Outside of 9 to 5

9-5, 9 to 5, clock, work clock

Working to advance your career is a job in itself. Unfortunately, it’s just not a 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. thing. Ninety percent of people go to their job, grab their coffee mug, do what is asked of them and then leave at 5 p.m. – most of the time it’s probably 4:58 p.m. That means there is a tremendous opportunity for young professionals to fast track their career by being in the 10 percent of people who do just a little more.  I don’t know about you, but I’m young, have way too much energy and have things I want to do in my life and career.  I want to be in that 10 percent!

So, what can we young pros do to make sure we are advancing our career outside of our typical 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.work day?  Here are some thoughts: Continue reading

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Your Career Journey: Avoid Thinking in Short-Term

A couple of months ago we wrote a blog “All About Passion with @garyvee and Steve Jobs.” We received a great comment back from an individual saying that as a recent college graduate, he would like to take a job that he was passionate about. The question remains if it’s a possibility in this economic climate.

I believe this person brings up an excellent point…I have been helping people along the hiring journey for a long time. Often, when a person receives one or multiple job offers, they are only thinking about the short-term gain (new job title, increase in salary, learning a new technology, etc).

My philosophy is to have candidates also look at the long-term effects: Continue reading

Tribute to My Parents: 38 Years of Service

This past weekend the community where I grew up celebrated my parent’s retirement. It was a wonderful celebration filled with great food and conversation. Some 450 people attended the event and it was amazing to see that multiple generations of families came to say good bye! I come from a long legacy of entrepreneurs. My great grandfather, Whiting (that’s where I got the company name from), owned his own cabinet business for over 30 years, and my parents had the family business for 38 years!

I think it’s amazing to be in one role for so long plus remain committed and passionate about what you do!

I had an opportunity to speak at the event on Sunday on behalf of the family to say thank you to my parents as well as the community where the business took place. I would like to share my comments with you and dedicate this blog to Neil and Fran Frood, Congratulations on your retirement!

I would like to take everyone on a journey so here is how I have heard the story go…. Continue reading

BlogHer’10: Interview with GenY @chipassionistas

BlogHer 2010, @chipassionistas, Jill felska, Jenn Korducki

@Jskow1, @felska, and @jennkorducki at BlogHer '10

At the 2010 BlogHer conference in New York City, I was excited to attend my very first session on “Gen Y Passionistas: Making Your Passion ‘Work’ For You”. Being a GenYer myself, I wanted to hear other impressions about the topic. I researched the two speakers and found it interesting how they began a business without a business degree. At the panel, I got to know how they reached that stage of where they are today.

One year ago, the @chipassionistas: Jill Felska and Jenn Korducki, founded Pursuing Our Passion (POP!) Social Media Inc. Providing branding services and media strategies for clients. They decided to take the risk of starting their own business by establishing a brand through their sweat and drive of wanting to help people. The entrepreneurs learned to trust their gut in the beginning of their journey, remaining optimistic at all times. Their advice for GenYers is to “focus on what leaves you energized at the end of the day.”

I had the opportunity to speak with the @chipassionistas about their process and prospective in creating their own business at such an early stage in their career. Here are a few of their responses on the topic:

Some words of inspiration from Jill that she heard from an old professor of hers: “I like to think of it as ‘Thank God It’s Monday, not TGIF’ because you should be able to enjoy all seven days of the week, not only two.” No matter what kind of career you have, it’s always a great feeling to wake up each morning with energy to go to work!

Yikes! I Have an Interview Tomorrow, What Do I Do?


Have you ever been scheduled for an interview at the last minute?  Now that interview is tomorrow? Stop everything you’re doing and FOCUS!

Perfect Your Resume.

For starters, double check your resume and make sure it’s up-to-date. Read through your resume word for word, and be ready to be asked any questions about the tiniest detail of your resume.

For example, I felt I was well prepared for my very first phone interview…so I thought. At the very bottom of my resume under my ‘Skills’ section, I had Adobe Photoshop. I was asked what I had done with the program. My issue- I hadn’t used it in over two years!  It’s something I never learned in business classes, but picked up from watching a friend.

If you think you’ll get stuck when asked a question about a detail on your resume, take it out.

Know what you want from this job.

Always go into an interview with a career goal in mind. Employers can’t figure it out for you. In just about half of my old interviews, I was asked the same question, “Where do you want to be in 5 years?” It’s scary to think about, because everyone thinks in the short-term point of view. But if you have a career goal already intact and a passion for the particular position, share it with the interviewer! Employers want to know that you think in the future with long-term goals. They want to see what you have to offer the organization, what’s important to you, your qualities, and your enthusiasm for their field. Continue reading

Are Employers Passionate Enough?

As the economy begins its slow recovery, more employees today are considering promotions and higher salaries. According to the WSJ, 42% of surveyed employees want a pay raise, and 11% are looking for a promotion.  Now think about your business.  Is your company experiencing these same symptoms that can lead to high turnover rate?

The employees might have the passion for their career, but maybe employers lack the passion for their employees. The circle of passion within a business needs to be kept intact. The only way to keep this flow of passion going and, in turn, a low employee churn rate, is to invest your passion into making your employees feel valued, and keeping them engaged in the progression of the business.

In order to retain your talent pool, the focus needs to be on building employee morale and allowing them to thrive in a culturally positive workplace. Continue reading

All About Passion with @garyvee and Steve Jobs

Take a moment and think about what makes your heart race, or how you feel as the adrenalin surges though your body. It sure is an energizing feeling!

I have had many conversations with folks that are looking for their next job or have a pending offer, but the position or company does not get them excited. They tell me it’s a job. And since we are in a recession, they feel pressured to take the offer.

It’s a scary time, but I do feel that the market is turning and there are opportunities out there for folks. Yes, it takes more time. You have to really dig for the lead, but they do exist! For instance, the Wall Street Journal reported that New York City’s unemployment rate has decreased to 9.6% in a couple of months, below the nation’s average of 9.7%. Continue reading

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