style="font-size:13px;color:#000000;">

The Job Shapers Network Launches One Week From Today!

job shapers, career network

I want to remind everyone to register for the first meeting of the Job Shapers Network – St. Louis’ newest and most unique career network!

Learn all about Job Shapers Network, then register here. And of course, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact me.

Meeting Date:

Thursday, September 3rd (and the first Thursday of every month for 8 months)

Meeting Place:

Kirkwood United Church of Christ,
1603 Dougherty Ferry Rd.
Kirkwood, MO 63122

Meeting Time:

7:30am to 8:30 am. Doors open at 7am.

Registration/Cost:

Online payment of $20.00/ MasterCard or Visa
Registration at the door: Cash or Check only.
Space is limited so online registration is encouraged.

Special Pricing:

Reduced rate of $15.00 a session if registered for the full 8 months.

7 Ways To Manage Change With Employees Successfully

career change, change, management

Image by iosphere, via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

As I’ve written before, change is one of the hardest – but most important – things to lead successfully in the workplace.

Even when the change is going to have a clear positive impact, people simply don’t like change, and too often resist it without even giving the change a chance.

I talk a lot about how to manage change in my book RINGMASTER, but right now I want to point you toward an article titled “7 Ways To Engage Employees In Change Management.”

The article does a great job of breaking down some very tangible cause and effect scenarios in change management, making a great case for why these 7 tips are essential:

  1. Solicit buy-in prior to launch.
  2. Communicate consistently.
  3. Lead by example.
  4. Reinforce and remind.
  5. Establish accountability.
  6. Invite employee feedback.
  7. Measure and celebrate progress.

Read the whole article to fully grasp the insight inherent in these tips, and ask yourself – “Is this how I’m managing change?” or “Is this how my manager is handling change?”

If not, you have some actionable steps you can take right away to better directing change in your workplace!

And as you consider how to reach your career goals, don’t forget to register for the Job Shapers Network meeting on Sept 3rd!

Register For The First Job Shapers Network Meeting on September 3rd!

job shapers, career network

The very first Job Shapers Network meeting is coming up – Thursday, September 3rd! Below is all you need to know about the Job Shapers Network, starting with all the registration info you need:

Meeting Place:

Kirkwood United Church of Christ,
1603 Dougherty Ferry Rd.
Kirkwood, MO 63122

Meeting Time:

7:30am to 8:30 am. Doors open at 7am.

Registration/Cost:

Online payment of $20.00/ MasterCard or Visa
Registration at the door: Cash or Check only.
Space is limited, so you’re encouraged to register here now.

Special Pricing:

Reduced rate of $15.00 a session if registered for the full 8 months

Why Job Shapers Network?:

Do you desire growth, development, acknowledgement, rewards and fulfillment in your career? Are you looking for recognition as a top performer in your workplace? If so, the Job Shapers Network was designed for you.

What will this group do for you?

Introduce you to new ideas about how to shape or “reshape” your job, creating a career path that’s satisfying for you and adds value to your organization. We’ll go beyond vague “advice” to provide tangible, individual steps that propel you forward in your career journey.
Of course, these seminars are also useful to people who are considering a job change, but this is not designed to be a job seekers group.

How will we do it?

Through rich content and a thought-provoking, monthly one-hour career strategy session, we’ll introduce action steps that will lead to personal career growth.

Why is this network necessary?

Sometimes even successful professionals who are reaping the rewards of a job well done – and praise from others in their organization – can’t shake the nagging feeling that they could do more. They’re just not sure what. And there are other reasons why people find themselves without direction in a job, not knowing how to develop one’s self. Some might even feel dissatisfied, going nowhere, or like they’re just maintaining the status quo in their current job. Maybe you’ve found yourself thrust into a new role without really considering whether it is a good move for you. It’s also possible your organization just went through a major change or restructure, and there’s been no time for anyone to sufficiently communicate about how your individual career aspirations fit with this change. In either of these examples, a desire to remain employed, potentially increased compensation, and/or a belief that the new job might be a “resume builder” may tempt you to stay. But if things don’t pan out as expected, job burnout could be next on your resume!

But this can be avoided, and the answer comes in driving your own career development, rather than just going with the flow or waiting to see what comes your way. Taking an active leadership role in your career plan isn’t just a good idea. It’s the whole idea. You can’t afford to gamble on the hope that your company will direct your career for you without your participation.

That’s why I created the “Job Shapers Network” – to empower professionals with the skills and strategies necessary to “reshape” their careers by directing their job, role and career growth without having to abandon the positive potential of one’s current organization.

I hope to see you September 3rd!

3 Secrets To Networking Success

professional networking, networking

Image by digitalart, via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I always tell my Career Coaching clients and seminar audiences that networking is not about getting names, business cards or phone numbers – it’s about building authentic relationships.

In a sea of networking-themed blog posts and news articles by “experts”, it’s rare that I see someone write something that I am 100% on board with – which is why I want to direct your attention to an article by Linda Citroen.

In the article, she breaks down 3 “secrets” about networking that are affirming, actionable and from my experience, dead-on true!

I especially likes that she provides tangible advice that you can put into action immediately. For example, when revealing that your contacts do indeed want to hear from you, she writes:

You are not burdening your network by letting them know how you are. Here are a few times to reach back out to those who helped you:

  • You got a promotion.
  • You landed the job.
  • You’ve been on the job for six months and are starting to feel comfortable there.
  • The connection they referred you to turned into a coffee meeting and a possible work relationship down the road.
  • You still struggle with the issues you sought their advice on.
  • You feel overwhelmed with gratitude and need to tell someone.
  • You have a colleague who benefited from your coaching or mentoring.
  • You need a pep talk.

Read the article for more solid networking advice, and please comments with any success stories you’ve had networking in this manner!

One of The Hottest Hiring Demographics – Women Over 50?!

how older women are getting hired

Image by stockimages, via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

We hear it all the time, from the media and from first-hand accounts – people over 50 have a hard time getting a new job, and women are discriminated against in the hiring process.

While I’m not here to try to “debunk” either of these common beliefs (because I’ve too often seen proof of each), I do want to share this recent article that claims women over the age of 50 are becoming one of the hiring market’s hottest demographics.

The article begins by stating what too many of us already know:

Statistics show that women ages 50 to 64 face a high rate of long-term unemployment and have difficulty finding the jobs they want to lead financially healthy lives.

But the article goes on to point out some more optimistic news for women over 50:

…more and more employers are identifying you as “prime talent.” You work harder, stay on the job longer, and have the soft skills they need. If you are actively looking for full-time work, this is a great time to prepare yourself for the job you want.

The article takes the stance that “lifelong learning” is the key, investing in continued education, programs and networks (like the new Job Shapers Network in St. Louis). I think that’s a fair opinion, but really feel the heart of the matter is identifying the unique value only you can offer regardless of your gender. But to the article’s point, if maintaining that unique value means continued education and growth, by all means pursue it!

Are you a woman over 50? Does this news come as a surprise to you? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

Big News – The Job Shapers Network Is Coming To St. Louis!

job shapers, career network

I’m very excited to announce that the Job Shapers Network is coming to St. Louis.

What is Job Shapers? As this article in the St Louis Post-Dispatch states:

Throughout St. Louis, you can find associations that focus on trends within your industry, help you learn new compliance standards, or help job seekers find support. But there isn’t a network like this to help employed professionals work smarter, develop themselves and shape their current jobs — until now.

The Job Shapers Network is the only one of its kind in our area, designed to provide professionals with career development strategies that will help them thrive in their workplace.

I have no doubt that this organization will be helpful for professionals at any point of their career. Learn more about the network, and don’t miss the first meeting on Thursday, September 3rd at the Kirkwood United Church of Christ at 7:30am.

Register now, or reach out to me with any questions!

Take The Career Compulsive Disorder Quiz

overworked, overworked career

Image by jesadaphorn, via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I’m all for committing to your career. Putting in the hours and doing the job right is what often leads to you ultimately landing your goals.

But how do you know if you’re TOO committed for your own good?

The Today Show site ran an interesting article/quiz the other day that calls out some concerning statistics on this topic:

According to a survey conducted by Harvard Business Review, half of professionals are putting in 65 hours of work per week. On top of that, nearly half of all employees check work email on weekends or when out sick.

Does this sound familiar to you? If so, maybe you have Career Compulsive Disorder! But to find out for sure, you can take the quiz that Today has featured in the article.

Work/life balance is important. Don’t wait until you’ve worked your life away to realize that.

August CAREEReport: How To Shape Your Career

Career ReportThe August CAREEReport is out, and with it comes some big news!

Discover a new St. Louis network that could totally revolutionize how you find satisfaction in your career.

Get insight into how leaders can initiate change in the workplace.

Uncover 5 signs that your job search is in trouble.

Find out what one word employees dread hearing most.

And see an inspirational story of how one woman shaped her career for the better.

Subscribe to CAREEReport here for future newsletters!

How To Understand Workplace Politics and Reward Systems

job promotion, work culture, workplace

Image by nongpimmy, via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Workplace politics and cultural rewards are a very real and specific part of any workplace.

Upon taking a new job, find out quickly what spoken or unspoken rules govern the place. For example, some companies are very open about their internal organizational hierarchy: who reports to whom, how management is structured, or which channels new rules and processes must pass through before they can be okayed and implemented. Other companies are very closed off about such things and don’t really make their hierarchies known.

Likewise, some higher-ups give their employees chances and room galore to make mistakes and learn from them, while others adhere to a strict three-strikes and-you’re-out policy. Observe how business is done and look for who “holds the keys,” so to speak; that is, who is the real decision maker. What might surprise you is that it’s not always the top dog!

Take note of which people make decisions that go beyond the normal scope of their job descriptions. At meetings, look for which employees are allowed more autonomy to speak and make suggestions in front of their superiors. Present choices. Often you get a better outcome if you offer an array of solutions to the decision maker.

Some bosses might feel hemmed in when an employee tells them there is only one possible solution to a problem. Keep your goals in line with company goals. If you feel that your efforts to create new processes and develop better ways of doing business fall on deaf ears, it could be that your goals do not line up with those held by the department or company.

Some companies value sticking to the tried-and-true more than they value innovation. Often we think that we have great solutions, but if they don’t match the director’s or VP’s ideals, you could find yourself doing a lot of work for nothing.

Want to know more about this topic? Check out m book, From Cornered To Corner Office.

The Word Employees Dread Hearing Most

change, workplace change, employee fear

Image by stockimages, via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again – CHANGE may be the most dreadful, burdening, concerning word an employee can hear in the workplace.

But it can also be one of the most powerful.

The reason change is such a feared word is because in the minds of employees, it’s a mandated set of rules, procedures, ways of doing things or a shift in structure that will rock their work world. They’re used to doing things one way, and they don’t want to have that changed without their say!

That’s why I love this take from Fortune contributor Karen Tegar Padir. Padir states:

Change in the workplace should make employees feel excited, not uneasy.

This is much easier said than implemented, but YES, ideally you can introduce and communicate change to your team in a way that gets them excited about what’s coming instead of worrying about it. Padir calls out a few specific points to keep in mind:

1. Maintain focus.

2. Define change as an “opportunity.”

3. Create win-win scenarios.

Read the whole article for more insight into how you can make change something employees get excited about.