7 Qualities that Help you Get Ahead in the Business World

Ever wonder what it takes to move ahead in your career?  A study that was done by Business Week  found that there are seven qualities that employers look for when promoting or moving employees into leadership roles.   Findings of the study indicated that women need to have more confidence and be more self-promoting  in order to develop move up the ladder; there are not many differences between men and women in the other desired qualities.

For men, the qualites that were valued the most by employers are, in order of importance:   self-confidence (66%) , integrity (59%),  self-discipline (51%),  talent (49%),  aggressiveness (30%),  political saavy (24%), and self-promotion (11%)

For women, the qualities that were valued most by employers, in order of importance, are: self-confidence (72%), integrity (58%), self-discipline (52%), talent (41%), aggressiveness (31%), political saavy (22%), and self-promotion (16%).

Any thoughts or feedback? Which do you value or need improvement in?

5 Ways to Develop a Job Search Frame-of-Mind

Looking for a job can be frustrating and anxiety-producing even in the best of times.  Knowing what employers are exactly looking for can stump the best detective.  Determining how to present yourself in a way that will get you noticed takes skill; there seems to be alot of varying information that is out-of-sync and can leave you confused and dazed.  Should you brand yourself, should you call after you send a resume, how many resumes do you send and in what format….the list can go on and on.  To add to the frustration is not getting any interest in what you do send out.  This can lead to a variety of emotions, such as frustration, anger, anxiety, or depression.  Soon, you may feel apathetic, where it doesn’t matter any more.

It is important to develop a job search frame-of-mind, which helps you to keep calm and focused on carrying out the goals and strategies you (hopefully) have in place and that you carry out on a daily basis.  Having a good mind-sense enables you to get up refreshed and motivated every morning and to face the day of seeking employment.  If you need some help to improve your mood and outlook, here are some tips to help you reframe and refresh:

1. Self-assess – you need to tap into your thoughts and emotions to see what it is leading to your out-of-control emotions; once you have you need to acknowledge and validate them

2. Develop good coping skills – tap into your inner strengths and interests to find activities that help to calm and deal with adversities, such as prayer, mediatation, exercise, gardening, etc.

3. Journal – writing down your thoughts and feelings will help you to safely release your emotions and can help you to develop awareness and keep you focused on your goals

4. Use thought-stopping techniques – the use of the rubber band on your wrist works to stop and banish negative self-talk and habits

5. Use the power of affirmations and visualizations – these can reframe negative thoughts into positive ones and helps to motivate and keep you focused on the end result

It is important during job-search mode to be fresh and open to new experiences and possibilities that may arise. If you are only focused on the negatives, or if you are not in a good frame of mind, you may miss these opportunities.  You will not be prepared for the people or opportunities that may be in your future.  Develop your job search frame-of-mind now so it can pay off in the end.  How do you keep focused and motivated in your job search??

Seven Sources of Career Indecision

If you are unsure about your career path, regardless if you are a recent entry to the job market, are returning to work, or have questions about career decisions, there may be reasons why. According to Callanan & Greenhaus (1990), there are seven sources that lead to career indecisions that result from either limited experience or knowledge and which they term “developmental indecision.”  Here are the seven sources – see where you fall in:

  1. Lack of Self-Information – not knowing your talents, skills, abilities, values, etc.
  2. Lack of Internal Work Orgranization – not being aware of career opportunities that may be available in your current organization
  3. Lack of External Work Information – not having enough knowledge about opportunities that exist for your occupation, such as companies, industries, locations, pay, status
  4. Lack of Decision Making Self-Confidence – this involves an inability in your confidence or self-assuradness to make decisions
  5. Decision-Making Fear and Anxiety – this can involve fears or worries of making the wrong decision that can stall or prevent you from making a decision
  6. Nonwork Demands – you may feel conflicted to choose between your personal career desires and family needs or demands
  7. Situational Constraints – these are personal constraints that may result due to financial considerations, your age, schooling or years invested in your current career

The key to overcoming career indecision is to do your homework – analyze, assesss, research, and uncover the information you need to help you make a good decision. If you find that you are having difficulty, it would be beneficial for you to seek support, whether that is a friend, family member, or a career coach.   I’d love your feedback if you’ve faced career indecisiveness and what you’ve done about it.

Up Your Value: How to Be a Superstar Employee


In the workforce, there are several levels of employees:   (1) those who survive, (2) those who thrive, and (3) superstars.  The key to effective career management is to be that “superstar”.  According to Zig Ziegler, superstar employees are more productive as they not only know and love their jobs, but they are also constantly growing both personally and professionally.  Other traits of superstar employees:

  • they are team players to the Nth degree, which increases productivity
  • they get along well with their fellow employees
  • they fully support the mission of the company
  • they are excited about the work they do
  • they make an effort to know and understand their roles and that of other workers and how they fit into the organizational structure
  • they take time to develop and maintain relationships with both management and coworkers
  • they are available to help fellow employees or to answer questions or to give assistance
  • they are truly interested in helping others succeed

The last attribute will help you move up in the company faster and become more valuable, which increases your longevity and helps you to master your career.  “You truly can have everything you want if you will just help enough other people to get what they want.”

Should You Be Working with a Career Coach?

If you have been umployed for longer than 3 months, you need to find a career coach – and fast!  Here are some benefits:

1. they can help you to regain composure when you feel thrust into unemployment and help you to regain your equilibrium

2. they can help you become focused and to set new career goals with action steps

3. they can give you “the scoop” on the job market:  who is hiring, where to leverage your skills and experience, using technology to market yourself

4. they can coach you on job search techniques, such as resumes, interviewing, business etiquette, and salary negotiations

5. they can help you to find your purpose and passion and take that into the workforce

6. they can help you to resolve workplace conflicts or stressors and help you learn more adaptive skills to cope with work life

7. they can help you to learn to manage your personal life and your work life

8. they can help you decide if you want to retire, and then help you exit the workforce on your terms

9. they can help you to leverage your skills and talents into a career path, possibly to get paid for what you know

10. they can help you to understand yourself better so you can manage your emotions and increase your attitude to be a highly engaged, highly motivated, and highly productive employee

A  job search can become tedious and demoralizing, as job searches are done and resumes are sent but there may be no responses.  It can become very depressing and frustrating.  Hiring a coach and spending money may seem like an impossibility, but the money you invest in yourself, and in your job search, can pay off enormously.  Having someone who knows the industry and who is focused on your success can help save you time that could be better spent on the right direction rather than the traditional way of job hunting.  A career coach can help you gain more money and benefits through salary negotion; they can help you to see how valuable you are to an organization.  A coach can help you to see your worth, to take more risks, and to grow your ego-strength, all of which will help you to believe and act on your behalf.  The end result will be a successful job search that will help you effectively manage your career and give you the preparation for the future should you need it.  Of course, these tips do not apply only to those who have lost a job as they serve well to all job seekers.  Shouldn’t you make the investment in yourself?

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