Tag Archives: job

  • 0
career lane

Career Lane, Should You Stay In It?

Tags : 

People often suggest, “Stay in your lane.” Should you stay in your career lane, make a shift, or be wider, broader, and demonstrate many skills?

Occasionally I will catch a dog show on TV. They’ll use words like, best in class, best of breed, or best in show.

What does it take to be at the top of the group? What about your personal best? Who is the competition?

About Numbers

How can you get promoted, get selected for an interview or become the successful candidate?

Let’s assume you are in sales. What is your goal? To achieve the top three or five percent of your entire team? To be number one? Out of how many?

Getting to the top five percent would mean being number one or number two, out of forty. The bigger the field gets, the more people you must rise above.

Competition

Competition to get selected for an interview and get the job can be brutal. Our digital age means the number of competitors is usually large.

People may think, “Maybe my career shouldn’t be in sales, but it could be sales related. I can apply myself to more than one area.”

The thought is when we broaden our scope, we’ve just created more chances. The irony is, doing this increases the competition, it dilutes your focus, and has made getting selected as a best in show even harder.

Career Lane

Making a career change is fine. I’ve done it three times across a thirty plus year career.

What is important is to pick a lane. Stick with it long enough to make a proper evaluation. Be consistent and stay focused.

Best of breed is easier than best in show.

You can be a big fish in a small pond. If you decide to jump into the ocean is it an entirely new game.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • -
two career paths

Two Career Paths, Which Is Yours?

Tags : 

If you had a choice which path would you choose? It is a question that many of us ponder each day. Not always consciously, but we’re working on it in the background. There are at least two career paths, which one are you on?

Sometimes the problem is that there is a goal in mind, but the path, plan, or process remains elusive.

Become the manager of the department.

Get the advanced degree in my field and pivot. 

Find a job doing the work I love.

Two Career Paths

The first path is simple. Put in some effort, land a job, do the work, and see where things go. Sometimes this is a career. It is easy to go through the motions each day.

Good effort at work. Enjoy a little free time here and there. Spend time with the kids. Have a hobby or take a vacation.

It isn’t your dream job, but it is work. It doesn’t pay what you want, but you are surviving. Suddenly weeks turn into months and months to years.

It’s a job and you’re doing alright. Life rolls on.

The second path is different. It has purpose. It may include a journey down the first path, but there is a different kind of objective. The objective is to use the first path to get to the second path.

Career Strategy

If you have a goal, you need a plan. When you have a goal and a plan, you need to execute. As you execute you must compare outcomes to timelines and milestones. Adjust, and move forward. Failure to do any of this puts you back on the first path.

Many will suggest it all depends on how bad you want it.

I would suggest that the recipe for success also includes commitment, discipline, and self-confidence. You’ll need to add in accountability and belief to get the best flavor.

You can let your career happen to you, or you can make your career work for you. Neither choice is wrong. Just remember, it is a choice.

What path are you on?

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • -
changing everything

When Changing Everything Doesn’t Make a Difference

Tags : 

New curtains may help, perhaps a new sofa, or a remodeled kitchen. Maybe it will take a new job, a new boss, or a total career shift. Changing everything may not make the difference you seek.

It’s funny where we place the blame. We look to our clothes, look in the closet, or sign up for the job postings feed. The thought is that this is what matters the most.

Of course, change can be good. It can make a significant difference. Change can be positive and leave behind the negative. What may matter most is understanding the root cause of why change feels required.

Understanding Your Change

Listening is an amazing thing. What you hear can make the difference for what you do. Even listening to yourself can be more valuable (or destructive) than what many people realize.

By now we’ve all heard that money can’t buy happiness. We know it as a truism. We see some of the wealthiest people still seeking happiness and living in a deeply depressive state of mind.

On the flip side we see some of the kindest, gentlest people who seem to have little more than the clothes on their back, and they are happy.

Certainly, money can matter, and so can people, relationships, faith, and hope.

Perhaps it is time to think twice about what you are changing. Think about the reasons why. Not the reasons you are justifying it, but the true reason why. And yes, there is a difference between the two.

Changing Everything

Changing everything and starting new seems like a good plan.

It is the new furniture, car, or job. It feels good, for a while.

Then suddenly, it just feels the same again.

People waste a lot of energy on changing everything. It may all be possible by changing just one thing.

What is your one thing?

-DEG

Do you need help discovering the one thing for your career or business? Coaching can help.

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • -
career strategy fails

What Will You Do If Your Career Strategy Fails?

Tags : 

Are you in full stride for your career? Have you been thinking about making a change? It is common to feel indecisive or stuck. Have you thought about what you’ll do if your career strategy fails?

Nearly everyone has jumped out of something. They’ve left the meeting early, dropped a class in school, or given up on a personal relationship.

They’ve bailed.

Getting In or Getting Out

Getting involved in something is easy. You raise your hand, give a nod, or click to sign up. What do you do if you want out?

Most people who walk into a room, leave by the same door. Jump in your car, you get out the same way you got in.

In our career, we’re told, “Don’t burn your bridges.”

If you’re unhappy there is a way out. It may very well be through the same door you got in. Do you want to bail or is it just a rough patch?

What Matters Most?

Organizational culture matters. Your boss matters. Neither usually change easily or quickly. Both are common reasons for leaving.

What if you decided that leaving didn’t support your long-term strategy. Could it make more sense to tough it out? What can you learn from any adversity connected to the situation? Is there something to value about staying a little longer?

It’s a tough spot. Do you feel like your career strategy is off? Does it feel like things have broken down and are not repairable?

A bump may not be failure.

Career Strategy Fails

What causes people to leave the meeting, drop a class, or walk-out on a relationship that may not be perfect? Often, there is a time to move on. The best question may be, “Is it now?”

Here are my thoughts. Don’t stay because you feel that you don’t have a choice. Don’t go just because you can. Remain connected to your strategy for growth.

Happiness matters, but a couple of bad days may not be a sign that your strategy is failing.

Don’t sacrifice long-term goals for short-term feel goods.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • 2
career story

How Are You Creating Your Career Story?

Tags : 

Everyone has a story, right? What is your story? I hear a lot of stories about doom and gloom. I hear a lot of embellished stories, and stories that may not even be real. What is your career story?

Career Story

If you aren’t happy with your story, the good news is that you can change it. It really doesn’t matter if you’re early in your career, mid-career, or even in the sunset. Your career is about your story.

We have stories all around us. There are biblical stories, stories of the land before time, and stories about developing nations, economies, and intellect. Your career is not about a single moment. It’s built across time.

If you don’t like how your story is starting you can change it. If you don’t like the flow, or the emerging ending, you can change it.

Sometimes the biggest hurdle is understanding your career is not a job. It is not a place, a city, a town, or an industry sector. It is something you’re building.

Seeking Change

If you feel that you need to do something different, don’t wait. You’re going to have to get involved. Make changes, grow your network, find more moments that build your story.

It may begin with what you’re telling yourself. Have you assessed your competencies? Do you need new skills, retraining, or updating? Perhaps.

Keep in mind however, that many people get the opportunity of a lifetime in an area that they aren’t so skilled. And now you’re asking, “How?”

The answer is easy, they have some boxes checked, but they are using their relationships (networking) to create the next opportunity.

What is your next moment? What if you look for the next part of your story, instead of a job. Invest in doing something that feels natural, feels good, and creates connection?

It’s time to build more of your story. People are waiting to hear it.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • 4
overlooked

Overlooked, Why Fitting In May Leave You Out

Tags : 

It starts with the job offer. The day your employer decides to extend you a job offer may be the first moment you become stuck. Do you feel like you are being overlooked for advancement? Are you wondering what you can do now?

Not everyone is trying to build a respectable career, some only want to supplement the family income. The truth is that most organizations need some of both types of employees.

Point of Hire

When you ask the hiring manager for the behind the scenes honesty about job applicant choices it probably won’t be long until they use the word, fit. Employers are looking for the best fit for the current job opening.

Both potential candidates and employers struggle with finding the right balance of fit versus satisfying future needs.

But you got the job. Six months ago, or ten years ago, and you’re looking for the sure-fire method to advance your career.

Seeking Advancement

There are really only two answers for this situation. One is that this employer is not where you should hang your hat and you should seek a new employer. The other is, that you need to be the best choice for advancement.

Neither answer may be easy, but from my experiences those are the cards you hold in your hand.

Assuming you want to stay with the current employer you must become the best fit for the new or advanced role. That typically occurs with proof.

Proof that you have the knowledge, skills, and abilities, or that you are prepared to get them. It also means the right attitude and continuous demonstration of commitment.

Overlooked

For the organization, perfect employees are often hard to come by, but perfection is usually not their goal.

Prove that you are the best fit and you’ll succeed.

If you are certain that you’ve been crossed off the opportunity for advancement list and that you may be overlooked forever. You probably should consider doing everything you can to continue to fit, but privately you should consider seeking a different employer.

It starts at the point of hire. If the fit is exactly what they need and that need or additional opportunities do not develop across time, fitting in may leave you out.

Out of what? Out of opportunity since you are the best fit for the [current] job.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten RespectNavigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • -
job candidates

Job Candidates and Picking The Right One

Tags : 

So many choices, which will you choose? Job candidates often come by the dozens, or even more. What factors or indicators do you use? Best resume, most personable, or the one who appears to be the best fit with your culture?

Certainly, all your choices are often connected with the specific job. Not all jobs in your workplace are the same. They are not always seeking the same level of skills or talent, and not all of them will hold the same potential for growth.

How do you decide?

Irony of Choice

Go to your local grocery store or farmers market, who has the best watermelon? The crate has fifteen or twenty, which one is the best? Searching from the presentation is challenging, it is hard to know what is inside.

Banana’s they are another story. As they ripen, which bunch will be the best? You have dozens to choose from, the pick is yours.

Do you take a chance? What is your best guess? How often are you successful?

Job Candidates

It may be true with people too. We search around on the surface. We look at the outside, the packaging, the presentation, and the stand out.

Pushed against time, we feel pressured to make the decision sooner rather than later. We want the best pick.

We may review resumes, curriculum vitae, and let technology do some of our filtering. Telephone calls are scheduled, we may hold face-to-face interviews, and we may spend a little time scouring the web for any bad press.

Clothing is often judged, the presence, the fit, and an assessment of the feeling. Is there comfort, appropriate confidence, and how will we get along?

References may be checked and for some candidates we may ask around. Who knows this person and what will they say about them?

Do you make the right choices?

The Right Pick

You can take your best guess with the watermelon or bananas, neither will last for very long.

Who is the best job candidate? How will they change across time?

It seems you really have two indicators, what you see on the surface and what you will get.

Remember that the grocer often chooses what you’ll see.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • -
your salary

Your Salary and What It Should Be

Tags : 

People want to make money. At least, most people do. Many want to pile on gobs and gobs of it. They need to pay for a car, a house, and their food. Is your salary what it should be?

There are always some fundamental factors involved in the work that you do. Certainly, the level of skill and talent are important. Universities, trade schools, and certificate programs enroll lots of people every year. Each person is determined to become of more value.

What Matters

If you are in the distribution business, or the retail sector, a degree in engineering may not matter that much.

If you are in the manufacturing sector, the fact that you can shoot 3-point baskets all day long or sing the lead role at the community theatre may not matter that much.

Your salary is important to you. Your job or the job that you seek has likely been classified by the organization as having a value and an associated salary. For nearly all jobs it is not about what you can do, but more about what the organization needs from you.

Your Salary

The best path for anyone insistent on earning more money is not to push their employer. It is to fulfill the employers needs the best.

Here are a few of many ways this can happen:

  1. Bring more awareness to your job role by consistently doing great things that attract attention because they are of great value to the employer.
  2. Improve your own skills to align with the needs and demands of the employer and arrive ready to give.
  3. Be compelling enough with your work that the employer believes the risk of losing you is more expensive than replacing you.

The third one is the trickiest. It has significant risk.

Be mindful of how employees are treated. Are they tools to complete a job or are they bringing value that can’t easily be replaced?

Value is based on perception. So is the salary range of your job.

The difference between being the cheapest solution or the most expensive solution is always based of the perceived value of the buyer.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten RespectNavigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • -
job descriptions

Job Descriptions For The Small Business

Tags : 

According to the Small Business Administration small businesses make up 99.7% of U.S. employer firms. Chances are good that you, or someone you know is employed by a small business. Are job descriptions really necessary for the small business?

C-Suite View

Many small business CEO’s are not so motivated to have job descriptions in place. Unfortunately, some just don’t connect with the reasons why it matters. They may consider it to be a nuisance, and just another reason to avoid human resource subjects.

Too much red tape, a waste of time, and not connected with making money (in their mind) so the ROI just doesn’t seem to justify the effort.

Interesting, because this same demographic is represented in much of my client base. I am often working with them to help improve morale, reduce employee turnover, and grow their business. Is the lack of job descriptions part of this problem?

Job Descriptions

Job descriptions can serve many different functions. Of course, they are largely designed to help the employee understand the expectations of their job. In many other ways they provide vital links for organizational success.

Here are a few of my favorite ways formal job descriptions contribute to organizational health, they:

  • provide clarity to the employee of what is expected;
  • ensure that every job has a purpose and that the purpose is connected to the mission;
  • appropriately motivate employees and create pride in their work;
  • set standards for roles that link to strategies for growth;
  • help establish qualitative (perhaps quantitative) measurements.

Many job descriptions are a collection of statements with creative verb usage. For a manager, we may see many statements that include words such as: manage, direct, or supervise.

Regardless of job level, the best organizations are getting even more creative to include cultural factors that are important for the organization. So we now see softer words such as: add energy to, encourage, and engage.

Job descriptions matter. Yes, they matter for small businesses too.

Organizations that want people to take pride in their work must first take pride in their people.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten RespectNavigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


  • -
hard work

Hard Work Is The Best Way To Get Lucky

Tags : 

Do you count on luck to carry you forward? Does hard work have anything to do with luck?

Look around on your daily commute. There is someone thinking that they need more luck. They need luck to get a better job, advance in their career, or find a way to rapidly increase their retirement account.

Do People Get Lucky?

It does happen. Publishers Clearing House claims it will release $7k a week for life to someone who finds luck. The convenience store is always selling lottery tickets.

Some will flock to the store that sells winning tickets, because of course, that store is lucky.

Luck probably has something to do with your odds, your chance of winning, right? Can you get lucky with your career? Is it really all about luck?

Often your odds of winning in any kind of large lottery pool are slim. Buy a single ticket or buy ten. It doesn’t change your odds very much.

Lucky Job

Are people lucky with their job? Do they get the best job because they are lucky? Those who are in stop and go traffic, or cruising along on the interstate, will they get lucky? What about the people on the train or those boarding the plane, will they get lucky?

I don’t believe much in luck. I seldom play the lottery. However, I do believe that we can put ourselves into better positions to get lucky.

The singing sensation probably sings more in order to get the lucky break to be discovered.

An entrepreneur or an inventor knows that more visibility will increase their odds of market success.

People counting on luck to find a new job are probably putting themselves into a position that allows luck to work in their favor. Perhaps more networking, replying to job ads, or doing more of their best work.

Hard Work

Will hard work help you get lucky? What will increase your odds?

Don’t quit too early, don’t give up too soon. The harder you work the better your chances.

Luck rarely happens to those who are not giving luck a chance.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


Search This Website

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Upcoming Public Events

  1. Leadership – Generational Leadership Summit

    February 5 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
  2. Navigating Generations – Clarion University SBDC

    April 23 @ 8:30 am - 12:00 pm
  3. WBHRS (West Branch SHRM) Event

    May 8 @ 8:00 am - 9:30 am

Blog (Filter) Categories

Follow me on Twitter

Assessment Services and Tools

Strategic, Competency, or Needs Assessments, DiSC Assessments, 360 Feedback, and more. Learn more