Happy New Year! (You can say that for a couple of weeks, right?)
2019 was good! 2020 still sounds like "the future" to me, but I'm really happy it's here and I'm here for it.
There's a lot I'm looking forward to in this year, including new projects I hope to share soon.
I recently contributed to a couple of pieces about interview questions Lynne Goldman wrote for Dice.com - on the jobseeker side, "3 Worst Interview Questions… and How to Answer Them" covers - well, that; on the employer side the article "Questions You Should Never Ask In A Job Interview" goes over some interview questions that might not be illegal but can put applicants in an uncomfortable position that has nothing to do with their ability to do the job.
Here's to the best year yet!
Just when I was thinking I've listened to every episode of every podcast in my feed, rock star psychotherapist Esther Perel has come out with "How's Work?"
Each episode of the Gimlet Media podcast (available through Spotify) showcases a one-time therapy session focused on work-related relationships and issues.
(And I'm shamelessly excited for an excuse to post a photo I got to take when I met her at the Pennsylvania Conference for Women in 2017.)
Dorie Clark is my favorite go-to expert for ideas on marketing, networking, and general building-something-out-of-seemingly-nothing. And in her recent Harvard Business Review piece, "How to Reach Out to Someone Whose Career You Admire," she gives some clear and actionable examples of the best strategies you can use to improve your odds of getting a response.
I end up talking a lot about how it's so important to find real-world people doing the type of work that you're interested in doing (or that you think you might be interested in doing) as you research new opportunities, and this article provides an especially relevant perspective on how to approach informational interviewing. While I think authentic flattery is often the best opener, this bit of Dorie Clark's advice made me say "Yes!" out loud to nobody:
Successful people ... (are often) approached by people taking the role of supplicants, who only want to ask questions and glean wisdom. It’s flattering at first, but with enough volume, it can become exhausting.
(I feel like I'm obliged to say that how much you try to present yourself as a peer vs. supplicant depends on your ask - and it's pretty easy to imagine someone going overboard with it, but I love it. What we think of as "networking" can easily slip into the simultaneously boring and gross transactional space, and finding genuine connections with inspirational people is the actual point anyway.)
I'm honored and thankful to have been named as providing the Best Career Services in Philadelphia by the Philly Happening List for 2019. It's been a great start to the year, and I'm looking forward to some exciting new things coming up soon!
If you've ever been asked to take some type of pre-employment assessment, you may have wondered why. I recently spoke with Dice.com's Mark Feffer for his article about what employers are even assessing and what it means for you. Companies can screen for a range of things - hard skills, soft skills, personality traits, communication style - and getting a better understanding of how they use these tests can help give the candidate some insight into the corporate culture.
Quietness can get a bad rap in certain work cultures. Employees who tend toward introversion can find themselves concerned their work is being overlooked but still feel reluctant to shout about their achievements. I shared some tips with Aly Semigran at Well+Good in her new article to help more reserved people stand out and get noticed at work.