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Archive for November, 2005

We’ve all been there.  You run into an acquaintance you met a few months back, and although you remember meeting him, you’re desperately trying to remember his name.

Besides being embarrassing, forgetting an important name can deal a blow to your career.  Remembering names helps you build instant rapport with new contacts and makes a good impression on employers.

Not everyone is great with names, but there are a few tricks that can help names stick.  Try them out with new contacts you meet this Thanksgiving weekend.  You might leave a lasting impression that could help you land your next position.

1. Be interested.  Many of us are too self-focused to even catch the other person’s name when we’re being introduced.  Pay attention.

2. Verify.  Even if her nametag says “Abigail,” she may prefer to be called “Abby.”

3. Picture the name written across their forehead.

4. Imagine writing the name.

5. Relate the name.  Try to associate a person’s name with a familiar image or famous person.

6. Use it frequently. Try to use the name three or four times during your conversation.

7. Record the name in a "new contacts" file. Review it now and then, especially when you will be attending a conference or meeting where you may see these individuals again.

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I’m a sucker for online quizzes.  When I’m bored at home, and there’s nothing on TV, I’ll take just about any quiz anyone sends my way.  They’re fun, silly and a great way to kill time.

CareerBuilder.com has some quizzes of our own – and these ones will help you answer questions much more pertinent to your job search than “What type of shoe are you?” (I’m a stiletto, by the way.)

These short quizzes will help you identify your job search savvy, your workplace personality and other traits important to your career.  And they’re every bit as fun to answer.

Click here to begin.

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Finals are coming up for many of you in the next couple of weeks.  You know what that means:  stress, sleep deprivation and way too many hours in the library.  But it also signals the end is near, and you’re just a couple of weeks away from at least three weeks of freedom.

After all the hard work you just finished, it’s tempting to spend your entire holiday break partying, watching TV and reading trashy magazines (I’m a sucker for US Weekly).  But those textbooks and rent aren’t going to pay for themselves, and this is a perfect time to find a seasonal job.

According to a CareerBuilder.com survey, 58 percent of hiring managers plan to hire seasonal employees in the fourth quarter.  And while heading to the mall is an obvious place to start looking, not all seasonal jobs are in retail.   The most popular positions for seasonal recruitment also include hospitality, shipping/delivery, administrative/clerical, customer service, food preparation and sales.

Some tips for finding seasonal work:

·         Start applying early – Many hiring mangers fill their jobs within two weeks.

·         Show enthusiasm – Focus on new skills and opportunities you’ll get, not the store discount.

·         Dress the part – If you’re applying for a retail job, show up in a professional outfit from that store.

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Is stressing out over midterms and finals worth it?  I’ll be the first to admit I got obsessed with my grades during the latter half of college.  In fact, I drove myself crazy until I turned in my very last final – even after I received a post-graduation job offer.

My rationale was that I didn’t want to exclude myself from any jobs based on my GPA.  While I don’t regret working hard and graduating with respectable grades, it turns out employers aren’t as obsessed with academics as I was.

According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, even though 70 percent of employers say they do have GPA cutoffs, the largest group requires only a 3.0 (compare that to the 3.8 average at Harvard med school). 

If your GPA isn’t exactly brag-worthy, there are things you can do to minimize or downplay its impact on your job search.  Click here for some tips.

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This early in the school year, many students haven’t given a second thought to their job searches yet.  But if you’re interested in a consulting job, you had better get started.

Consulting firms’ recruitment cycles are now in full swing.  Here are some questions that Vault.com suggests you ask yourself before accepting a job as a consultant:

·        Do you work well in teams?
Consultants don’t work alone. They frequently brainstorm with colleagues, work with employees at the client company, or collaborate with consultants from other companies hired by the client.

·        Do you multi-task well?
Not only are consulting assignments frantic, but you might also be assigned to more than one project at once.

·        Speaking of friends, do you like talking to people?
Enjoying meetings, talking to experts, explaining your views, persuasion and making impromptu presentations will get you far in consulting.

·        Did you love school?
Did you really like going to class and doing your homework? There’s a high correlation between academic curiosity and enjoyment of consulting.

Read more about consulting jobs…

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It’s just getting cold enough to break out your sweaters.  So why am I talking about summer internships already?

Because even if you haven’t started planning for next summer, many employers have.  A search for “summer intern” on CareerBuilder.com turned up about 150 job listings… and it’s only November.

Getting a summer internship is a win-win for college students, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers.  Nearly 98 percent of companies responding to a recent NACE study said they pay their interns, reporting they paid their undergraduates an average of $15.44 an hour.

Having internship experience can also help you get hired after graduation.  Employers reported that nearly three out of five of their new hires last year had internship experience.

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Start searching for your internship now.

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