Job Search Series – References Upon Request

“A good reference can seal the deal for a candidate.”
~ Shawn VanDerziel,
Chief Human Resources Officer and Chief of Staff at Chicago’s Field Museum (Renowned U.S. natural history museum and home base of the celebrated archaeologist / adventurer of the Indiana Jones movies) 

A key element of the job search is one’s references; yet candidates often fail to give this component the attention it deserves. Neglecting to research, update and nurture your references can trip you up just as you’re about to cross the finish line. 

Job Search Series – Going For The Gold

"Not that you root for failure," Vasgersian said,
 "but he needs one more crash to guarantee a spot in the next round."
 ~ NBC 2014 Winter Olympics Announcer Matt Vasgersian   

The above-captioned statement was uttered during the men’s freestyle aerial ski jumps last week in Sochi during the play-by-play commentary. The speculation was that for American Mac Bohonnon to qualify for the finals one of his competitors would have to make a mistake, thereby making Mr. Bohonnon’s point score sufficient. No sooner were these words spoken when Renato Ulrich of Switzerland took his turn at the aerials and crashed. 

Job Search Series – Your Positioning Statement

“Today you are You, that is truer than true.
There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”

Dr. SeussHappy Birthday to You!

Now that you have completed your prototype resume that you will customize for each position to which you apply, and have an understanding of the principles of the cover letter (see the previous three guest posts by Lyn Nelson), let’s turn now to your positioning statement. This composition is also referred to as your 30-second elevator pitch because it should be short and concise enough to recite between floors as you are riding up or down in an elevator – because you never know when you will run into someone important and you only have a few seconds to take advantage of the opportunity to make your case. 

Goodbye Parents, Hello College – Part 2

  You say "Goodbye" and I say "Hello.  Hello, hello."
 Hello, Goodbye, by the Beatles

You’ve already visited your campus, taken the tours, met with some key people, attended orientation sessions, received your welcome packet, activated whatever needs to be activated – or are in the process of doing so – discussed and negotiated various subjects with your parents, met your new roommate and your RA, and so on. If you haven’t completed all of the aforementioned, let’s start with your parents: 

National Etiquette Week 2013

“O, Times! O, Manners! It is my opinion
That you are changing sadly your dominion
I mean the reign of manners hath long ceased,
For men have none at all, or bad at least…

~ Edgar Allan Poe, Poetry, Tales and Selected Essays

If Mr. Poe was bemoaning the decline of manners in the 19th Century, perhaps there has always been an element of incivility in society. We are most certainly hearing an outcry about the widespread lack of common courtesy in the early 21st Century. However, we know now, as the learned knew back then, that those who master etiquette skills generally are more successful in their social and business lives. 

And, now there is something in which Mr. Poe most likely would have been happy to participate: National Etiquette Week (NEW), which is being observed during this week, May 13-17. 

Women’s History Month – The Rise of the Boss Lady

But Do We Like Her?

From Diana Christensen (Network, 1976) and Katharine Parker (Working Girl, 1988) to Miranda Priestly (The Devil Wears Prada, 2006) and M (James Bond, 1995-2012), the female boss has been portrayed in the movies as immoral, back-stabbing, fire-breathing and unfeeling, to the point of being unflinchingly prepared to send even her most prized employee to his death without a backward glance. (Although in the case of M, we might be prepared to forgive her.)

Dining Etiquette Series – Who Sits Next To Whom?

They then started the two-by-two procession into the dining room,
where the butler held the seating chart and footmen
 were present to push in chairs.

~ Description of dinner seating at Downton Abbey,
 Providence Journal Blog

Although you might have your preferences of who you'd like to sit next to at a Downton Abbey dinner, the seating chart will be in the hands of the butler.  Arranged seating is the norm at very formal dinners, where you will find your name neatly written, often in calligraphy on a little card above the place setting.  At Downton Abbey, the White House or Buckingham Palace you should also expect to escort or be escorted into the dining room where dinner will be served elegantly by a wait staff dressed in formal attire. Nothing much has changed over the years.

The Holiday Office Party

How To Enjoy Yourself While Keeping Your Career Intact

The holiday season is here again, and with it the usual round of festivities, including the notorious annual office party, known in many modern savvy circles as “the annual business holiday party.”  Companies sponsor this annual event to demonstrate appreciation to their employees; but underneath the good intentions lurk all sorts of minefields and pitfalls for the unwary employee. 

Your Internet Presence – Part 10: Mobile Etiquette




The Intel Corporation, which manufactures the processors in today’s popular mobile devices, in association with The Emily Post Institute has conducted its first international survey on “Mobile Etiquette."  Accordingly, it seems fitting to close (for now) this series on Your Internet Presence with an examination of how people are managing their mobile devices worldwide.

Your Internet Presence – Part 8: Facebook Politics

Politics Schmolitics

I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend.
~Thomas Jefferson

One major pitfall of online social networking occurs when voicing one’s opinion on a hot topic.  It’s bad enough when you read many of the viewpoints by strangers who post comments online on The Huffington Post, Yahoo! and Google, especially those that contain profanity, hurl insults and are short on facts.

But what happens when you read differing political beliefs by your friends on your Facebook page?