WEDDLE’s Research Factoid: Another Set of Evidence
WEDDLE’s continuously conducts both primary and secondary research on the Best Practices in job search and career self-management. Typically, we focus on empirical or quantitative data as they often yield especially instructive insights. However, the other side of research-qualitative data-is also important. The comments and opinions of job seekers open a window on their experiences using various job search and career self-management techniques. Those data are equally as helpful in understanding how best to find, apply for and land the job of your dreams.
WEDDLE’s has been conducting an online survey of job seekers since 1996. Over the years, we’ve collected hundreds of thousands of data elements detailing:
As a part of this survey, we’ve asked them to identify the job search method which enabled them to land their last job and the employment Web-sites that have served them best in their job search. In both cases, they can choose from a list of answers we’ve provided or give us their own. And, when they give us their own answer, they often add a comment that helps us better understand the nature of their experience. We’ve reprinted some of those comments below. They are unedited and unblinkingly candid and honest. In short, they are some of the best qualitative data you’ll find about what’s good and what’s otherwise in today’s job market.
How did you get your last job?
“from headhunter who found my resume on Monster”
“combination of networking & internet searching through a state sponsored website”
“Company website + networking with employee of that company”
“Consulting work led to a job offer”
“Contacted company I worked for in the past.”
“Job agent identified from company listing on a job board”
“Referral through friend”
“Responded to a window notice”
“saw an ad for career fair on OrlandoJobs.com web site”
“Started my own company”
“through the co-op website at my University”
“worked an internship there prior to being hired”
Which employment Web-sites have served you best?
“All basically are inefficient as a method for job search”
“collegerecruiter.com – I was in the Army and went back to school – graduate this fall.”
“For me Hcareers is the best if you want to stay in the Hospitality Field!”
“HR Ladder is the best site for HR positions”
“I feel that all these places are very bad. They keep sending job that is not in my legue. Or too far away I wish I could get some help from these job board. I have my resume with 5 different job board and still not one job after 2 years”
“idealist.org – this is the best for non-profit jobs and is amazingly user friendly. It is great for career change/retirement positions or social service careers”
“www.techjobsonline.com has had some good jobs, but not as good as dice and vetjobs”
“I got my job with CSX from VetJobs!”
Please Note: We’d very much like to have your views and insights about job searching and career self-management, as well. To participate in our online survey, please visit the Polling Station at the WEDDLE’s Web-site.
Section Two: For Your Consideration
Peter Weddle has been writing columns for his own newsletter and for the interactive edition of The Wall Street Journal since 1999. The following column has been drawn from that work and updated for 2007. You can also find many of Peter’s tips and techniques in his guide WEDDLE’s WizNotes: Finding a Job on the Web and in his soon-to-be-published book, The Career Fitness Self-Fulfillment System: How to Work Strong in Your Personal Pursuit of Happiness.
Building Up Your Employment Security
If you’ve been employed for more than fifteen minutes over the past five years, you know that the workplace is a stressful environment. Corporate America’s addiction to “doing more with less” and downsizing has added more tasks and higher expectations to everyone’s day with very little additional pay. That reality was also confirmed by a report a year ago from the academic community. It found that more than one-third of all workers (34%) had greater difficulties at work because of ever increasing stress. Stress on-the-job was hurting their performance and thus their prospects for the future.
There are, of course, many reasons why we feel stressed at work. These include worrying about:
While all of these stressors are equally as difficult to endure, the first two-which represent income security-are often the result of the last three-which represent employment security. In other words, if we can successfully achieve employment security, it’s likely that we’ll also reach genuine and lasting income security.
So, how can we avoid employment insecurity? As my long time readers know, I think there’s only one way to meet this challenge: we have to alter our view of what work is and why it’s done. In other words, we have to abandon the traditional notion that work is either a race up some company’s career ladder or a quest for wealth by the age of 30, 40, 50-you pick the birthday. Comfortable as those familiar goals may be, they will not protect us from the triple threats of nonstop layoffs, ever higher performance requirements, and the souring sense that our career has become an endless expanse of ever more dull 12-hour days.
What will protect us from these stressors? I call it Career Fitness. It is a philosophy of working based on two simple tenets drawn from what we know about physical fitness. A healthy career, like a healthy body, depends on our recognizing that:
Achieving Career Fitness is something that everyone can do. I’ve developed a set of exercises-it’s called the “Career Fitness Work-In”-that you can use to work more meaning and satisfaction into your life. It is the best way to reduce stress on-the-job and strengthen your employment security. I’ll focus on two of the seven exercises here to get you started.
Employment security is based on a person’s ability to contribute to the success of an employing organization. They may not work continuously in the same job or even for the same employer, but they will be continuously employed. Why? Because they can deliver skills, knowledge and experience that organizations need to achieve their goals. How do you achieve such career strength and endurance? You must:
Here’s what I mean.
Pump Up Your Cardiovascular System.
The heart of your career is your expertise. It is the knowledge you have and can use on-the-job. Now, expertise is often misunderstood.
The reality, however, is that expertise is a function of both education and experience. One is not a substitute for the other. Both are required. And because the world of work is a dynamic and ever-changing place, the education and experience required for success are always changing, as well. That’s what this exercise is all about. In order to be able to contribute to your employer’s success today and to the success of your employer (whoever it may be) tomorrow, you have to stretch and strengthen your muscles of expertise all of the time and without let up.
Increase Your Flexibility and Range of Motion.
The reach of your capabilities defines your (current and potential) value to an employer. In other words, the more you can do in and outside your job, the greater your contribution will be to an organization. To extend the reach of your capabilities, you should:
This exercise will enable you to play both a larger role and a greater array of roles in your employer’s organization. That flexibility and range of motion make you a more versatile and, therefore, a more valuable employee.
Stress can endanger our career health as much as it can undermine our physical well being. While there is no single way to alleviate stress, exercise can have a significant and positive impact. For your physical health, that exercise must promote strength and endurance; for your career health, it must build expertise, flexibility and reach.
Thanks for reading,
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Section Three: Site News You Can Use
Business 2.0 published an article on how best to nurture creativity in your organization. As the competition for the best jobs heats up, the key to success will increasingly depend upon the innovation we bring to our on-the-job performance. According to Paolo Lugan, who’s been described as the “Father of Innovation,” there are seven secrets for creating creativity. They are:
Author Stephen M. R. Covey, son of Stephen R. Covey, has explored an important topic in his recent book, The Speed of Trust. He believes that trust is the single most important factor in business success. It is the essence of our personal brand, our reputation and standing in the world of work. How is trust established? Covey argues it is the product of 13 specific behaviors. They include:
Towers Perrin released the results of a survey of what employers are doing to reward their high performers. In other words, what kind of recognition will you get when you go above and beyond for your employer? Here’s what’s being done and by how many organizations:
In other words, when it comes to acknowledging superior performance, fewer than three-out-of-ten companies reward their line employees the way they typically reward their senior executives. CEOs and others in the c-suite put cash in their pockets, while employees get to take on additional projects and attend training sessions so they can do more work.
WEDDLE’s publications are a smart way to give yourself a competitive advantage in the race for a new or better job. They include:
So, make sure you’re at the top of your game; get your WEDDLE’s books today. Click on the appropriate link to your left or call WEDDLE’s at 317.598.9768.