JL Careers Blog

Simple Step to Go from Overwhelmed to Focused & Successful

Are you feeling you are only giving 10% to everything you do - spread thin and ineffective?  There’s a simple solution to this problem.  Your brain can only effectively deal with a limited number of priorities at one time.  You just aren’t able to impact change if you are targeting too many things at once.  Instead, create BUCKETS to get things out of your brain so you can focus on your top priorities.

Get started by writing down all your tasks, projects, and anything that is on your mind and preventing you from focusing.  It could be you need to complete a proposal, have a difficult conversation with an employee, book a haircut; anything personal or work related.  Write it all down. 

Now choose your top 1-3 priorities, and then put everything else into buckets, with each bucket only holding one item.  These buckets are then metaphorically shelved out of the way until you have time to bring each bucket down and deal with it.

This simple process of creating buckets and putting things away and out of your mind, gives you space to breathe, and the time to be more productive.  You will have less “clutter” preventing you from focusing and achieving success. 

So, what’s on your plate right now that’s overwhelming for you? What’s eating up your energy and time as you are consistently thinking or worrying about it?  I challenge you to decide to deal with it now OR, put it in a bucket and away on the shelf.  This act of consciously choosing what to focus on, and deciding to shelf the clutter, will restore your energy.  You will be more effective and ready to really dive into the important stuff and achieve success.

Author: Joanne Loberg of JL Careers Inc. is a Certified Executive Coach and Internationally Certified Career Management Professional.  She specializes in working with professional and executive clients to provide job search strategies and tools including career testing, professional resumes, LinkedIn profiles, targeted cover letters, and interview strategies and practice.  Copyright 2015 JL Careers Inc.  All rights reserved.

Wishing you much career success!

Joanne Loberg
Certified Executive Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers

 

JL Careers Speaker's Series: Crafting a Compelling Career Brand

Joanne will be leading a workshop for the UBC Master of Health Administration - Career Management Program.  In this second workshop in a three-part series, she will present Crafting a Compelling Career Brand.

She will be speaking about how to clarify your Career Brand and will explore Information Interviews.  This interactive workshop will provide participants with tools to position themselves for career success.

Session date: November 28, 2015

This session is facilitated by Joanne Loberg, Certified Executive Coach and Internationally Certified Career Management Professional from JL Careers. Joanne is known for presenting highly engaging and resource-rich sessions that provide invaluable insights and new career management tactics and tools. With over 20 years’ expertise in the career management field, Joanne is highly skilled in helping her clients build rewarding careers. She has been referred to as “an absolute expert at navigating the complex territory of career advancement”.

JL Careers Speaker's Series: Ignite Your Career! Getting More of What You Want in Your Career

Joanne will be leading a workshop for the UBC Master of Health Administration - Career Management Program.  In this first workshop in a three-part series, she will present Ignite Your Career! Getting More of What You Want in Your Career.

She will be speaking about clarifying career goals, exploring what’s standing in the way of success, and developing a Career Action Plan to get on track.  This session will provide participants with the insights needed to drive their career success.

Session dates: November 7 and 14, 2015

This session is facilitated by Joanne Loberg, Certified Executive Coach and Internationally Certified Career Management Professional from JL Careers. Joanne is known for presenting highly engaging and resource-rich sessions that provide invaluable insights and new career management tactics and tools. With over 20 years’ expertise in the career management field, Joanne is highly skilled in helping her clients build rewarding careers. She has been referred to as “an absolute expert at navigating the complex territory of career advancement”.

How to Answer the Interview Question: Why are You Interested in this Job?

At some point in your next job interview, you’ll be asked the question, “Why are you interested in this job?” Many hiring managers use this go-to question as a means to uncover your motives. Your answer will reveal whether it’s just for the money (a surefire way to shut down your chances), a desire to escape your current job, or if you have something of real value to bring to the table.

Not sure how to answer? The U.S. News and & World Report advises candidates to summarize their qualifications when answering this key question. “In the delivery of your message, it's not only what you say but how you say it. Less is more: Be succinct, clear and convincing. State with confidence your ability to do the job by pointing out three solid qualifications and relevant experiences you already possess.”  As with any interview question, avoid a negative answer (escaping your current position or a challenging workplace), and focus on your passion for the company, the issues it’s facing, and becoming part of the team to contribute and make a difference.

Here are some other tips for successfully answering this question:

Speak to the organization’s needs

It makes sense to talk about the company’s challenges or opportunities, which further shows that you’re invested in the organization. Make a connection to these by speaking about your successful track record. Highlight your achievements when facing similar issues in your current or past roles.  This will help the interviewer see you as a candidate with much to offer. 

Showcase your strengths

Touch on your strengths and illustrate why you’re the best person for the job. Provide concrete examples that reveal how your accomplishments, skills and experience relate to the company’s needs. If you’ve stepped up to take on a challenging problem, show how that experience is useful in the present position. If you’re an innovator, tie that quality into an aspect of the job description.

Be passionate

There’s nothing that will mark you as an unqualified candidate – no matter how strong your expertise – than someone who lacks passion. You’ve got to express your excitement about the company and interest in their customers, products or market challenges. Hiring managers want to know you are keenly interested in working for them, and you aren’t just looking for a new job.  

Use the opportunity to showcase your strengths and accomplishments when you’re asked, Why do you want this job? Be sure to emphasize how you’re a good fit for the job and the company.  Lastly, craft a response that addresses the organization’s needs and demonstrates your passion and excitement for the company and where it’s headed.  

Author: Joanne Loberg of JL Careers Inc. is a Certified Executive Coach and Internationally Certified Career Management Professional.  She specializes in working with professional and executive clients to provide job search strategies and tools including career testing, professional resumes, LinkedIn profiles, targeted cover letters, and interview strategies and practice.  Copyright 2015 JL Careers Inc.  All rights reserved.

Going on Interviews and Not Landing Offers?

Let’s connect for a complimentary Interview Audit to determine what you need to do to start acing the interview and landing great job offers. I can be reached at joanne.loberg@jlcareers.com

I look forward to hearing from you!

Joanne Loberg
Certified Executive Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers

 

Want to Get Promoted? 9 Tips to Move Your Career Forward

Frustrated your career is stalling, and you aren’t being considered for promotions?   

LinkedIn’s HR Lead, Kevin Delaney's article:  How to Get Promoted: 9 Things You Need to Do offers insights into what you need to do to start getting the results you want.  Here are some questions to consider:

Are you hanging out with the right people?

“If you run with wolves, you will learn how to howl. But, if you associate with eagles, you will learn to soar to great heights.  The simple but true fact of life is that you can become like those with whom you closely associate – for the good and the bad”  - Colin Powell

If you want to be successful in any area of your life, you need to spend time with people who are more successful than you.  So if you want to be promoted, stop hanging out with the complainers and seek the company of those who have already been promoted.  Pick their brains, watch what they do, and copy their habits.  

Do you need an attitude check?  

Attitude means everything.  You can be brilliant technically but if you lack social skills, including the ability to work well with others, you will limit your promotional opportunities.

When was the last time you checked in with your boss?  

Keeping your boss in the loop is key to your success.  Be proactive and regularly update your boss with your accomplishments and how you have contributed to the organization. 

Who knows you?  

Raise your profile in your organization and be seen by more than your manager.  Network across the organization. Attend meetings and be seen as a contributor at these meetings. 

For more suggestions, I recommend you read: How to Get Promoted: 9 Things You Need to Do and check out JL Careers' articles: Networking to Build Career Success and Who’s Your Mentor? 

Wishing you much career success!

Joanne Loberg
Certified Executive Career Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers

Ever Had a Difficult Conversation Go Wrong?

Difficult Conversations 101: 3 Secrets to Get What You Need – Without It Blowing Up In Your Face is a free webinar on October 14 hosted by Diane A Ross, lawyer and master at handling difficult conversations.

If you are avoiding a difficult conversation because you are worried about how the other person might react, there’s an easy way to stop the difficult conversation drama before it starts. I’ve attended her training and walked away with tools and strategies that truly work. 

Wishing you much career success,

Joanne Loberg
Certified Executive Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers

Challenging Interview Questions: What are your Leadership Blind Spots?

What’s the most difficult interview question you’ve ever encountered? It likely had to do with weaknesses, and everybody has them. Two of the more difficult questions interviewers ask are “What are your leadership blind spots?” and “What is the critical feedback that you received from your boss that surprised you the most?” They’re challenging because they expose your vulnerabilities. 

How to answer the question

The interviewer is assessing your ability to continuously learn, adapt to challenges and take constructive criticism. When asked “What are your leadership blind spots?” your strategy should be to answer honestly about a weakness you know you have, and explain how you mitigate its impact.  The key is to provide an answer that shows you are self-aware, and can work with your weaknesses. Interviewers will see right through answers that imply you’ve done a 180 degree turn; be honest and say that your awareness of the problem helps you prevent it from affecting performance. 

Gaining insight

If you’re truly not aware of your blind spots, ask your manager or a few trusted colleagues to help. Forbes advises you to “reach out to people who have observed your performance and are willing to give you candid feedback on how you are perceived. You can collect that information on a formal basis using some type of 360° assessment or informally over lunch with a colleague.”  Also ask these observers for their suggestions on what you might do to strengthen this area. Then, get busy and start working on closing the gap.

Also consider whether your weakness might be perceived as a strength in a new culture. Prior to the interview, learn as much as you can about the culture of the organization with which you’re interviewing. Identify their key leadership competencies and culture (i.e. are they fast-moving, consensus-driven, direct, or bureaucratic?). Harvard Business Review states, “Someone who might seem weak or indecisive in an execution-oriented culture might fit right into a highly collaborative culture. What looks like weakness in one culture may be strength in another.” Ultimately, the more you know about the organization, the more effective you’ll be answering these tricky job interview questions.

Everyone has weaknesses and has received criticism on the job. Don’t skirt around these interview questions. Instead, turn them to your advantage. A compelling, insightful answer requires advance preparation. Instead of hoping you won’t be asked this question, bank on it, and be ready to respond.   

Author: Joanne Loberg of JL Careers Inc. is a Certified Executive Coach and Internationally Certified Career Management Professional.  She specializes in working with professional and executive clients to provide job search strategies and tools including career testing, professional resumes, LinkedIn profiles, targeted cover letters, and interview strategies and practice. Copyright 2015 JL Careers Inc.  All rights reserved.

Reboot your Career: Launch into Fall with the 30 Day Career Shift Challenge

Feeling Stuck in Your Career? Needing a new career challenge, or a new job? The Fall is a great time to regroup and strategize next steps. Let’s connect for a complimentary 30 minute telephone Career Consultation to determine what's getting in the way of your moving forward. By identifying this root issue or roadblock, we can then determine next steps to reaching your career goals and getting more of what you want in your career.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Joanne Loberg
Certified Executive Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers

Networking Mastery: Focus on Giving

Giving? What’s giving got to do with networking? Everything! Traditional networking is all about getting leads and booking meetings. But, masterful networkers focus instead on: Giving not Getting. These networking pros ask one key question: How can I help?

By focusing on providing introductions, compliments, advice and their appreciation, they build robust networks that pay off. These experts don’t focus on gaining rewards, but instead they are genuinely interested in helping others. It’s this attitude that creates rewarding relationships that result in job leads, new business opportunities and open doors.  

Master networker, Keith Ferrazzi speaks of giving to build real relationships and challenges you to do the same in his Inc.com article: Don’t Keep Score

Wishing you much career success!

Joanne Loberg
Certified Executive Career Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers

Career Road Maps for Retaining Your Employees

Paving the way to retaining employees, Mainroad Group is one of the innovative organizations using Career Roadmaps to build employee engagement. As Careerbuilder reports:  “59% of Canadians are unhappy at work”, creating meaningful work is essential to creating job satisfaction.  Read about what Mainroad is doing to support employee career development in the BIV article:

Company helps younger workers plot career road maps

Need information about career pathing for employees? JL Careers is here to Help You Get Started. We provide leading-edge career development resources and workshops. Read about our work with Flight Centre and Envision Financial.

JL Careers provides two foundational programs –  Retaining & Engaging Your Employees: A Manager’s Guide to Leading Career Conversations, and Ignite Your Career – designed to help your employees explore career options within your organization, analyze their skills and developmental gaps, develop strategies to build their career, and create a Career Action Plan.

For more information and to discuss the solutions that would best fit your organization’s needs, please contact Joanne Loberg, Principal Consultant at JL Careers.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Joanne Loberg
Certified Executive Career Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers

10 Key Questions to Ask When a Recruiter Calls

Congratulations!  A recruiter has connected with you to discuss an opportunity.  Before submitting your resume, do your due diligence.  

Veteran recruiter, Andrea Sobel provides TheLadders with a list of probing questions you should ask.   From  “What are the 3 main qualifications the recruiter’s client (the employer) is looking for?" to “What is the reason for the open position?”, ask questions to understand the employer’s needs, the scope of responsibilities, and the challenges facing someone walking into the role.  

Sobel’s 10 questions to ask a recruiter will help you determine if the opportunity is a good fit and could lead to a rewarding new job.

Wishing you much career success!

Joanne Loberg
Certified Executive Career Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers

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© 2004-2013 JL Careers, Vancouver BC, Canada

JL Careers provides Career and Leadership Coaching, Career Development Workshops, and Career Transition Services which support organizational succession planning, leadership development and employee engagement strategies.