5 Steps to Set Clear Goals to Find Jobs

To achieve a goal, there is a process that you should implement. This process is to streamline and analyze your objectives. Begin at the very beginning at the smallest, specific part. These are the most important steps to take to meet the guidelines. An objective is a way of knowing what action or plan is to be taken and identifying the expected results. This plan provides a set of directions so that making the decision will not be as complicated as when the goal is just being considered.

Peter Ducker documented a book published in 1954 entitled Practiced Management wherein MBO which stands for Management by Objectives, was introduced. This is a program that consists of simple but very useful processes in order to meet commitments in an organization. Never worry, as this is also applicable to personal plans.

MBO consists of 5 steps:

1. It should be SPECIFIC. It is better to accomplish one goal at a time rather than thinking of several different plans at one time. A single objective cannot be derived if there are two or more results expected. What’s important is that there is a need to clarify what is to be achieved and should have your full attention. This must be taken as seriously as possible.

2. It should be MEASURABLE. A lot of things that are not tangible are hard to measure and there are things that are really measurable for the mere fact that it includes numbers or ratings. Take the service crews for example, it is hard to measure how the service was delivered but if the number of complaints is counted then there is a specific number that can be used to rate the effectiveness of the service.

In offices, the number of tasks or assignments that were accomplished is used as basis for the measurement. Cooperation, though a very vague word can also be measured by means of getting a subordinate and peer survey. How fast or delayed assistance was provided to a certain individual is enough to provide information on how situations can be measured. Try not to use general terms when making an objective statement. It should be something clear and specific like: to write, to recite, to perform, to fix, to process, to designate, to purchase, to choose, to reprogram, etc.

3. It should be ATTAINABLE. The resources available give information on how an objective can be attained. This must be something that is derived from fact and very realistic. It could be that a certain objective is indeed realistic but the time frame to reap the result may not be. It is better to say objectives that can be factual for this promotes motivation rather than an objective taken from belief as this may cause unexpected failure and feeling of discouragement.

4. It should be RESULT-ORIENTED. An objective should be stated clearly so that the expectation is clear. Focus on the end result as this will be the guide whether or not the objective to reach the goal is effective and meaningful. Is this objective going to help an individual grow or succeed? Will it be beneficial to all concerned? Once the success has been attained and all the plans were completed then it is a success.

5. It should be TIME BOUND. There should be a limit to all the things needed to be accomplished. This matters since the root of any plan can be traceable. This will also tell if the objective is effective enough not to cause any delay. There will also be more of the sense of fulfillment once a goal is attained with the objectives set earlier than a deadline.

To sum it all up, develop an objective that is easily measured, can be attained, with a limited time, this will help in determining if the objective is realistic enough, meaningful, and proven to be worthwhile to everyone involved. A chart or journal can be kept to keep track of any opportunities and strengths that were met along the way. This will also indicate the time that was consumed and the length of the objective developed. A successful objective helps motivate the individual or the group involved toward greater achievements.


FAQs on Thank You Notes

Career advisers tell jobseekers to send a thank you note after an interview. To address the most frequently asked questions on how and what to send in a thank you note, here are some give aways.

  • Won't the employer think that an applicant is desperate and a sissy applicant if he sends a thank-you letter?

    Of course not. Rarely does an employer not pleased to receive a thank-you letter. It is considered as a common way of showing politeness, a gesture of courtesy, one way to outshine the rest of the interviewees, and a way to keep your name upfront.

  • Will it not jeopardize the possibility of getting the job?

    Not in most cases, but it could in some point of time. So why take the chance? (so they ask) The answer: Most bosses wavers between the last two most promising applicants, a student and experienced officer for example, after the final interview for a certain position. But when the boss gets a thank-you letter from the student, it made all the difference. Because of that simple well mannered gesture, the student lands on the job.

  • Can it be handwritten or should it be typewritten?

    Actually, it does not matter. What's important is the thought of doing it. It must be tailored to your prospective company and the officer who made the interview. Thus, respect is further established. However, if the company, interviewer or the position being applied calls for a formal business letter, then do so. Mostly, a handwritten note is okay if the interviewer and the applicant have built rapport.

  • Will it be okay to e-mail the thank you note?

    First thoughts indicate that this is a big NO. However, it depends on the company's culture. If the people in the company use e-mail in all of their communication and correspondence, then it should be acceptable. This will also apply if the company is into fast decision making when hiring applicants. Always remember that even if e-mails fit in with the culture of the company, it's still a better idea to follow up the email with a hard copy of your thank you.

  • So you can just save yourself from trouble since "anything goes" right?

    NO. On the other side of the previous story, there are prospective applicants who were almost on the verge of being hired but suddenly hit the skids after sending in a sloppy, ill-fixed thank you letters, with many typographical errors and misspelled words. A part of having a good communication skill is being able to write effectively and companies do not need employees who have to be taught simple writing skills.

  • Will a borrowed thank-you letter do?

    Yes, borrowing is one thing. But make sure to look at the basic structure of the letter. Never plagiarize the whole letter as it may be applicable to the one person but not for the other. Surely, there are employers who can distinguish a thank-you note that has been copied or not.

  • If it was a panel interview should thank you letters be sent to all interviewers?

    Frankly, that's the best. The same letter to each is as essential as making one for each. All you have to do is edit some phrases for individuality in case the interviewers would bump in to each other and compare the notes they received.

  • How soon should a thank-you note be sent?

    The golden rule is to send thank you notes within 24 hours after the interview.

  • Will it still be okay to mail the thank you note if the hiring decision will be made sooner than when the mailed thank you note is received?

    Come to think of it, if the mail is too pre-historic for the hiring decision makers, then find a much speedy way: it can be via e-mail, fax, express delivery or personal delivery. In fact, if you have hand delivered the thank you note, it can leave a great impression.

  • What if there's already an offer before even sending the thank you notes?

    It's still better to send the thank you notes as this can be used to accept or decline the offer. This could also be a confirmation of your agreement and/or understanding of the offer they have given (salary, benefits, other compensation, starting date, vacations, etc.), this way any discrepancies can be straightened out before even starting for the job.

Always find a way to make it as personalized as possible. Try to think out of the box, you may even adapt what you have observed the interviewer has in the office during the interview. Sending an article that you think the interviewer could be interested in is also another suggestion.

Whatever method you use, make it fast and professional.


Do not Think About Money

How can one person "think out of the box?" This should be done independently, but how? Here's an example: Cut a cake into eight slices but you have to make no more than three cuts. Most people will have trouble coming up with a way to cut the cake. But to solve this, you have to change the way you look at the cake and how to cut it. One perfect solution is to cut the cake into two equal sizes and put the other half on top of the other. Cut it again in half then stack the other half pieces on top of one another and cut them again. There you go, that's thinking out of the box.

Another example of thinking out of a box is this: Here are four words... subtract, multiply, add, decrease... Now which one does not belong to the group? Mostly people would right away say that the word "decrease" does not belong. Why? Because all the other three words are mathematical jargons and the latter is not. Well, that's not thinking out of the box, if you think out of the box, the answer would be the word "add" since it only has three letters while all the other have six and more. You could give a lot of right answers but the one that shows more creativity stands out.

The prevailing component in the way our minds work is inserting some changes from past experiences and processes. Another good sample is when you are asked two days that starts with the letter "T". Your answer would probably be Tuesday and Thursday. Hey, how about Tomorrow and Today? Well, that is out of the box all right. Companies try to test a new product and are sure they are getting a design at a reasonable cost. They look at things in the business and think that objectives will work just as planned. But these things sound monotonous already, for they only think using the past as patterns. Patterns are helpful since they help finish tasks such as driving, eating or drinking. However, these are the same patterns that make it hard for people to think out of the box and create alternative solutions to a dilemma especially when challenged with unwanted data.

One important move to break the pattern is trying to reverse patterns, designs or solutions and arouse new interest. Take thing as they are and turn them inside out, upside down, or simply turn them around and you'll be surprised with the result. This was Henry Ford's personal experience. His conventional plan was to just "bring people to work." He tried to change all this into: "bring work to the people." This plan generated more revenues.

Another way to bring out other solutions to simple problems and situations is to not think about the subject. If you want to bring about something more creative, think not of the part of the problem itself, rather, think of people or subjects in motion and then use the abstract formation or design as a stimulus for a new design.

But to think out of the box, never shy away from the fact that some of your ideas could really be crazy enough. This could break rigidity of thinking and present a way to sift the harebrained and irrational. This gives the thinker more freedom to think out of the box and reinvent things in way they have never been arranged before. What you could do is list several odd or absurd ideas about a certain problem.

Letting go of the question will release the stress you are undergoing by trying to “squeeze” the creativity. Once you let it go, all the power of the universe is free to find a solution and the solution will come to you when you least expect it.

In much more real life scenarios, you could think out of the box for fun. You can practice fun trouble-making stuff without hurting anyone by saying or doing the unexpected. But make sure that you do this first to persons you already know to avoid conflicts and negative confrontations. Say, a buddy asks for the time, automatically you would look at your wrist watch which is a result of the stimulus-response theory. Thinking out of the box, why not say something crazy like, "Oh it's time for a vengeance," then head toward the door. Watch their reaction as they go into total confusion and trance as you have totally mixed things up in their heads and interrupted their thinking pattern. (Don't forget to apologize afterwards)

Thinking out of the Box or usually known as creative thinking seeks to design new and really creative arrangement of elements to produce a work of art. Being an out of the box thinker can be a rewarding profession. This is dangerous, but it could be one of your strengths in no time. If the herd is going to the right, you go the other way.

Remember that you could be genius in your own way. Your thoughts come from deep reaches and these totally different ideas are clever enough to make a difference in the end. Being creative and out of the box is wild sometimes, but could move you through growth and self-development. You'll be surprised at how easy and differently it will be for you to fix and try to solve things away from the tried-and-true habits. Let your thinking out of the old box be your guide to a new and better, wonderful approach to life.


7 Easy Steps to Improve their Skills in Job Interviews

In the midst of technological advancement nowadays, the "back-to-basics" rule still applies when it comes to getting hired for a job. It does not matter if you are planning to apply for a million-dollar company or a small, independent firm. When you face an interviewer, it all boils down to how you present yourself. This is the deciding factor whether you will get hired or not.

So you have distributed your resume to prospective employers and you have determined the correct job to apply for. The next step is to schedule the job interview.

You can make the acquaintance of the assistant or the receptionist when you schedule for the interview, either by phone or personally. Be friendly and polite, as these people might provide information that can be essential to getting that job or, even just give you a background of the company or your prospective boss.

Finally, you show up for the interview.

The basic traits of being prompt, how you speak and carry yourself and even how you dress are all factors that contribute in making a lasting impression that will eventually get you hired.

Here are 7 easy steps on how you can improve your interviewing skills:

  • 1.) Prepare for the interview

    First, dress appropriately. Once the interviewer walks into the room, or once you walk into the room to be interviewed, your appearance will be the first thing to make the impact. Dress appropriately, check your grooming and mind your posture.

    Second, practice basic courtesy. Know where the interview will be held and be there with ample time to prepare yourself before the scheduled interview. Turn your phone off to avoid unnecessary distractions.

  • 2.) Research

    Use all your resources to make sure that you know the basics about the company. You would not want to be caught unprepared when asked about how you heard or what you know about the company that you are applying for.

    Learn about your potential employer. In your mind, develop a clear picture of the company profile.

    Make sure that you prepared answers to a few basic questions, but do not sound scripted. This happens when you rehearse what you will be saying word for word. It is enough that you have an overview of what you will impart to the interviewer, and it is better to be spontaneous.

  • 3.) Be cool

    Step forward so that you are now seated and the interview is about to begin. Make a great first impression by maintaining eye contact, giving the interviewer a firm handshake, a friendly smile and a polite greeting. Sit only when you are asked to do so and do not forget to thank the interviewer for taking time off of his or her busy schedule to interview you.

    Make sure to start on a positive note and set the proper expectations.

  • 4.) Do not sell yourself short

    In the course of the interview, answer the questions briefly and accurately. The key is to be honest.

    Make sure that as a prospective employee, you impart to your future employer what you really are and what you can do for the company, not the other way around. Stay positive and do not give a bad impression about your previous employer.

    If you are applying for your first job, do not let your lack of experience hinder you from gaining the advantage against more experienced applicants. What you lack in experience, make up for in confidence and eagerness to learn.

    You may also put yourself in the employer's shoes. Ask yourself, if I were on the other side of this desk, what qualities should I look for in a potential employee? Would I profit if he works for me and can he contribute to the development of the company?

    Do not be afraid to sell yourself but do not be overconfident. Just project an air that you are sure of yourself and your capabilities.

  • 5.) Ask questions

    Should you encounter a difficult interviewer, do not be intimidated. One who does not let you put in a word edgewise should be lightly reminded that you should do most of the talking since he is the one who needs to learn more about you.

  • 6.) Wrap it up

    As you near the end of the interview, make sure that all bases are covered. Now is not the time to discuss or even ask about the salary and the benefits that you will receive once employed. There is ample time for that once you do get the position and you are discussing the job offer.

    Wrap things up by summarizing your strengths and pointing out your positive traits. Finally, as you end the interview, make sure to thank the interviewer again for his or her time, thus leaving a lasting impression.

  • 7.) Follow up

    Send that all-important thank you note after the interview. Thank the interviewer for the time that he took with you and for giving you that opportunity. Make sure that you know who to contact for follow-up of the results.

A lot of research has been made about the interviewing process. Here is a brief run-through:

First, you make a schedule for the interview.
Then, you are there in the office and you are seen by the interviewee.
The interview itself then transpires.
Next is the closing, then you follow-up with a thank-you-note.
You eventually get accepted and you discuss, negotiate for and sign-up the job offer.
You may notice that the interviewing takes up a great deal of the getting-hired process, so you might as well polish up your interviewing skills on your way to getting that dream job.


Dressing for Interview Success

Prepare and practice for an interview. After the date and venue has been set, allow time for enough preparation for the big day. Remember that first impressions do last, so the way an applicant look really does matter. Employers could easily give the verdict based on the manner of dressing during the initial interview.

Better questions and service can be received if the appearance itself commands respect. It is important to consider the surroundings of the company granting you an interview. There is no reason to be over dressed or poorly dressed during this very significant day. In fact, it is a good rule of thumb to always dress appropriately for any situation. All to often appearance is glossed over. Some might say that the inner characteristics of the person matter more, but in reality, you only have one opportunity for a first impression. Make it count!

Although there are specific guidelines that can be followed, these does not apply to all states like New York for example, where people wear trendy up to extreme styles that are far away from the usual fashion rules common people know. The rule of thumb should be to wear something that could boost more confidence.

Below are the top ten do's and don'ts during an interview:

  • Ø Avoid wild colored nail polish before the interview. The same goes with long nails that could easily turn off some conservative employers. These should be neat and very tidy looking.
  • Ø Never wear jewelry that rattles and jiggles as you speak and move. Try not to wear two or more rings or earrings. Piercing aside from the ears is also a no.
  • Ø Professional hairdo also counts
  • Ø If you are a woman, wear closed shoes. Heels are very appropriate as this gives more confidence to an individual and sense of respect is also provided once they see the person wearing them.
  • Ø Again, for the ladies, never bare those newly shaven legs. If possible, use stockings regardless of the temperature. But make sure not to use fancy colored ones. Only use those made for neutral looking legs. These should also match the shoes.
  • Ø Remember that a good suit or dress brings more confidence as well. This will also allow more comfort and chance for the applicant to answer comfortably or with ease.
  • Ø Avoid short skirts for women. Wearing pants or leggings are a no, no during interviews.
  • Ø Wear the appropriate blazers just as long as they do not look fashion outdated. Do not use any leather coats or jackets.
  • Ø For men, the tie is still appropriate. Avoid using turtlenecks. If there is no suit and tie available, use a collared shirt or white long sleeves.
  • Ø Men must not use too much aftershave.
  • Ø Women should be using bags that are not too bright and conspicuous. These should be conservative and matching the dress.
  • Ø Any briefcase used must be in perfect condition.

The way a person looks equal the message he is trying to convey. During the interview, this can either become a plus factor for the applicant or big loss. Know for a fact that the way an applicant should look must be appealing, fashionable but not loud.

Consider the latest trends in the area or location where the prospective job is located. One aspect that is a part of how employer picks a new hire is based on the physical attributes of the applicant. From the way the hands were shaken, keeping an eye contact, the way the posture was maintained, the smile was delivered up to the manner of dressing is being rated already.

Regardless of your personal career background, skills, and underlying talents, if the first impression was never striking enough to make an outstanding appeal to the interviewers, nothing else counts. This can be the potential employers’ initial interpretation of how an applicant will do on the job.

Whether that perception is “fair” is irrelevant. Do you want the job? Look the part and your chances for success are much greater!


References Getting Contacts List

You may find it hard to use networking to find a job if you can't rely on your warm contacts to give you the information you need. At times, you would have to ask your warm contacts to refer you to at least two people that they know who will be able to give you the information you needed.

However, there are times that your warm contact, particularly those who don't know you well, may not readily provide you with the information. Some of your warm contacts may feel reluctant about vouching for you to their other contacts.

Because of this, you may find it difficult to use your network. To make networking and getting referrals an easy task for you, here are a few tips.

* Nurture your warm contacts

Before you even need your warm contacts or before you even ask for help, keep in touch with your warm contacts. You may send notes or greetings from time to time, call to "catch up" on them, invite them to lunch, be interested or help in their business or do anything just to cultivate your connection with them.

In this way, by the time you need help, they can remember you and can more readily give information about their other contacts that will be able to help you.

* Be polite

Since you might not have close personal relationships with some of your valuable warm contacts, it is inappropriate to just give them a call and ask them for information about your field of interest.

Sometimes, sending a note in advance, or asking to meet them for lunch is a better way to ask for their help.

* Listen to them

Most of the time, even if your warm contact knows little in the field where you are trying to find a job, they might offer you advice. Be polite and interested in what they are saying. Who knows, the information that they are giving may be valuable to you in the future.

There are times that your warm contacts may be telling you tips on what manner will work best when you talk to the persons to whom you are being referred. Your warm contacts may also imply what qualities and qualifications the person is looking for.

* Ask for at least two referrals

Before you ask for referrals, make sure that your warm contact had said everything that he or she can say about your field of interest.

Even if they know little about that field, it is impolite if you cut them short while they are speaking to ask if they know somebody who will be able to help you.

If they weren't able to refer you to at least one of their contacts, thoughtfully ask them why they couldn't do so. They may give you answers that may include indirect comments or suggestions. They may also indicate a lack of confidence in your work strategy. If this is so, you may have to make follow ups with them to prove that you are indeed credible and match their requirements.

However, there are also times when they can't refer you to their contacts because they just don't know anybody who might have the information or might be interested in the product.

In this case, ask them to keep their eyes open for opportunities that you might be interested in. You can also leave with them copies of your resume.

* Just ask for two referrals

Two referrals are enough from each warm contact. This is to have another option in case the first one didn't work out. Asking for more than two referrals could be impolite as it can take much time from your warm contact. Also, that will make your warm contact feel that you are relying mostly on him or her for your job search. So, unless they volunteer the information, don't ask for more than 2 referrals.

* Contact referrals as soon as possible

When your warm contacts give you referrals, there are times that they also call these people personally to give more information about you. On the other hand, when you contact the people to whom you were referred, your referrals may call your warm contacts to verify the information or to ask more information about you.

Either way, you have to contact your referrals soon enough that these people can still remember their conversation with your warm contact, or your warm contact can still remember that you have talked.

At times, after your referrals were called by your warm contacts, they anticipate your call and even prepare questionnaires and exams for you to take. Do not waste this opportunity by delaying follow-up on referrals.

Keeping these tips in mind will be able to help you in asking for good referrals from your warm contacts.