One-E-Anna Notes - Issue #016 - February, 2004
A monthly newsletter to conduct you on the way to successful performance and harmony in your life.
Brought to you by E. Anna Watkins, MBA - Career & Life Coach
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What's in this issue?
Most of us would not dream of purchasing articles of clothing without trying them on first. In fact, this can be an exhaustive process that requires visits to several stores. At each store we pore through the racks of clothing and select a few outfits to try on in the fitting room. Often we enlist the help of a friend or the store clerk to help us make our buying decisions. "Does this make me look fat? Will this go with my rust-colored boots? Can I wear this to a formal dinner?"
We are looking to find clothes that fit and flatter us. We also want to ensure that our clothing choices will fit the occasion. It's a very careful process. After all, we want to spend our money wisely.
Wouldn't it be nice if we could apply this same care to 'trying on' a job or career? Why not? There are a number of ways to sample a job first before you commit. Even if you think it's too late to change your 'career wardrobe, 'you can give this a try. Let's compare clothes shopping to the process:
Window shopping - observe others in the chosen job, watching what they do and their demeanor as they go about their tasks
Catalog shopping - read articles by and about people in that profession
Informational interview - get first-hand information from an insider, someone who has 'worn the outfit'
Shadowing - get someone's permission to follow them throughout a typical day at work and perhaps even assist them
Internship - apply to help in a job setting that you are considering, either as a paid or unpaid intern
Classes - take a class that gives 'hands on' experience and network with others who share your interest
Professional associations - attend a meeting to gain knowledge and meet people in the profession
Volunteer - get involved with a volunteer project where you can learn and use new skills plus meet people who can help you advance in your career
Whatever you choose, explore thoroughly! How do you feel about actually performing the work involved in that profession? Are you comfortable with the people in that setting? Record your thoughts as you go through this process and keep asking "What have I learned about this job?" "Can I picture myself doing this work?"
My coaching clients have had interesting results with these methods of trying on careers. One young woman fit in so successfully when she did a job shadow that she signed up to complete a certification course and is well on her way to a new career!
You deserve a career that's a perfect fit! Go shopping and get into that fitting room. Try it on! You will be glad you did when you look in the mirror and see yourself as comfortable and confident in a 'suitable' job.
Recently I attended an excellent workshop on salary negotiation, and I was inspired to share a few quick tips with you. Salary negotiation is a crucial stage of the interview process and a point that is often dreaded by the interviewee. "What if I ask for too much and they rule me out? What if I ask for too little and they accept?" In either case - Not the winning scenario you had in mind! Here are some tips.
A. Know the salary range for the position. Do your research!
** Also note: If you are relocating, use a comparison salary calculator to adjust for different cost of living. These calculators can be found at monster.com and other job search sites.
B. Let the interviewer bring up the salary subject first!
Be patient and let them state a salary figure. Then use the knowledge gained from your research to begin to negotiate. "I understand that the typical range for this type of job is $x to $xx. I'm sure that we can agree on a fair and reasonable figure."
C. Know your bottom line.
You must have in mind a minimum that you consider a fair salary for the position. If you have carefully managed your negotiating to this point, you may be able to convince them to increase a figure that is below your set point. Otherwise, be prepared to walk away.
You can read more resume & interview tips at www.one-e-anna.com
24, 2004 - Resume
5, 2004 - Cover
19, 2004 - Networking
How about a free sample coaching session or resume review? You can easily arrange this. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and I will follow up with you to schedule an appointment - no strings attached!