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There are harsh realities in life; certain truths, and no matter how you try to sugar coat it. It’s a cold world and here are some cold blooded facts of work.

Schoolhouse Rock: If you want a career and not a job, if you want to be a role model to your children, if you want a better future; you must get some type of post-secondary education. Associates, Bachelor’s, Master’s, or PhD. Hell! Get some certifications. You got to have something more than a High School diploma.

Sustainability: Keep learning, keep networking, and stay current. Use social media for something constructive. Reach out to old professors and see what’s new in your field. Embrace technology. Take a refresher course. Attend a conference.

Less is more: Lose weight; I heard on the Today Show that an overweight or obese person earns about 200K less in their lifetime. I’m taking my own medicine here. Just gotta do it. I have discussed the benefits of wellness programs, take advantage of them. If your job doesn’t have one, put it in the suggestion box.

The Gambler: “You got to know when to hold ‘em, Know when to fold ‘em, Know when to talk away and know when to run…” Great song! Also true with work. Right now it’s a crazy market. Economic trends and workforce reductions has over half the people working hating their jobs. They are just hanging on waiting for a better opportunity. Companies are laying-off and outsourcing; average career length is declining. You have to know when to stay and when it’s time to move on. Tricky but odds are you are not going to retire from your current organization.

And finally, don’t feel sorry for yourself, no one else will. Keep looking, keep searching, keep networking, something will happen. No one said the costofwork was cheap.

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Today, we’re talking about knowing when you have hit a glass ceiling. I’ve had a lot of conversations with people who feel that they’ve accomplished all that they can in their current position. They can’t seem to get a promotion and move up in their career.  This is known as the glass ceiling effect, don’t be believe the hype, there’s a glass ceiling at your company. There is maximum position that you can achieve.  Not everyone can be CEO. For some it’s higher than others. Unfortunately, it’s not fair, but life’s not fair. Some folks create their own glass ceiling and it’s pretty low. Here’s what happens.

  1. You have a poor attitude. I said it before; no one wants to work with a jerk. No matter how talented you are, if you are not a nice person, you will not move too far.
  2. You are unprofessional, I made this separate because I’ve seen nice folks but they do not know how to behave in a professional setting. They tend to say something or do something that is off-putting or awkward.  I’ve seen this happen and the person just doesn’t know better.
  3. You feel entitled, entitlement is a killer, once you feel that you deserve anything, and shouldn’t have to work on it; career suicide.
  4. You are detached; you just don’t care. You do the minimum amount of what’s asked of you.
  5. You are a kiss up; no one likes a brown noser, a yes man/woman. You have no opinion or anything constructive to add to the situation.

You may see jerks and brown nosers get a promotion or two, and that may be enough for them however they will never make it to the pinnacle.

Now let’s say you are a good person, hard worker, difference maker, well educated, team player, but still you just can’t get over the hump. Well it happens, here are some signs you are experiencing a glass ceiling by no fault of your own.

  1. The company’s organization culture is set to where you work until retirement and then the next tenured person takes over. This happens in most government or state (public) employers.
  2. The company is having financial problems. Hiring freezes, reorganizations, buyouts, mergers, lots of confusion, work force reductions, and wage freezes.  There may be lateral movement but not too many promotions happen during this time.
  3. The boss; you just don’t see eye to eye.  You don’t have to have fights, or arguments, could just be a weird relationship. We call that fit, you just don’t fit.
  4. You’re looked over for promotions with little to no explanation. “It’s not you, we found someone who is more qualified or a better fit” Uh yeah, if this happens more than once, it may be time to go.
  5. You’re not challenged in your position and you see no career pathing. You can do the job in your sleep. You want more of a challenge, but there is not one available. Dust off the resume.

It’s tough making a decision to move forward to another company. We get so invested in our companies and out titles that we become emotionally tied to our job. Leaving is like leaving family, some compare it to a death in the family.  Remember you have to make the best decision for you and your real family. You can stay connected through social media now. So it’s not goodbye, it’s so long for now.

As we proceed to give you what you need, Happy Friday, I’ll be brief! I know you have sun tanning to do stay hydrated.  Here are some things I have seen throughout the week and I think you might like.

1st, Work Coach Café  is another HR Blog by Ronnie Ann, it’s extremely informative.  I am hooked on it like Starbucks.  I have gotten a lot of tips that have helped me to change my resume and my interview answers.  Check her out, in fact save her as a favorite, I did.

http://www.workcoachcafe.com/

2nd, It’s another blog; this one is about being on budget. Now, I will say it’s a lot of reading but it’s worth it, plus this young lady Stephanie Rauterkus is an accomplished speaker.  Her blog is nominated for a couple of 2011 Black Weblogs Awards.

http://365daysonabudget.com/

The final one, I just think is funny. You may have heard about this one.  This movie theater in Texas has a no text messaging policy.  Well they had to kick someone out for violating the rule, and she called back and gave them a piece of her mind (small piece) and they turned around and made a PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT…click here

Hiring can be very stressful. The balance of selecting the correct candidate is tough. Occasionally, you have equal candidates and it comes down to a judgment call. Then you have those decisions that are no brainers. We have to be politically correct and with federal laws the way they are, being honest is risky.  Don’t you wish you could say, “Well, you didn’t get the job because you seem like a liar, and a pain in the butt. If it doesn’t work out I couldn’t fire you right away because you wouldn’t cry foul, and I’d have to take time to build a solid case before I can purge my organization of your corrosive energy.”  Recently, a client of mine called me, and told me he was having a conversation with a hiring manager, that told him, they look for nice people more than anything. The reason being, the manager told him, we can train nice people, you can’t train a jerk.  Honesty works with best friends, not so much with applicants.

Here are some tips to help you make a decision that doesn’t violate Title VII, Civil Rights Act of 1964. Have standardized interview questions that are relevant to the essential job functions of the position you are trying to fill.  Establish a set of questions which with desired responses that are assigned a weighted value (measured). This way you can measure the effectiveness of the responses provided by the applicant. I understand that as a hiring manager you want to try to make sure you are getting people that are responsible and accountable.  And granted some folks can pretend and put on a great front in the interview process.  When most people are being interviewed they are nervous and may go off the grid. That just means you have to be creative in your questioning.

Creative does not equal confrontational, offensive, disrespectful, or nasty.  Situational questions are really good at determining the character and decision making of an applicant. Situation questions are like, “Tell me about a time when you…” or “How would you handle this potential problem…” Seems basic, but a lot of folks don’t know.  I find it interesting that some people talk about their children, health conditions or recreational drug use in an interview.  Here’s a true one, when asked in an interview, why should I hire you? Applicant responds, “Man I got 4 kids, I need this job.” Understandable but most applicants have children and that is not a legal reason to hire or fire someone.  So be careful navigating the landmine of candidate rejection. You can have the purest intention and try to help someone but basically they won’t hear the advice, only the rejection.

Don’t believe me, read this!

I’m excited to introduce my new series titled “Tidbits and Hotness”.  I am going to make this a weekly series posted on Friday’s.  It will be brief and will consist of articles, links, videos or blogs that I have seen throughout the week and feel deserves a little attention. It may be business, HR, or humor or just cool stuff.  So without further delay, I present Tidbits and Hotness

Still get a lot of questions on resumes, I found this and I hope it helps.

I remember reading something about the pay gap difference being a myth.  If you believe that then you should read this…(In my Fred G. Sanford voice) “You big dummy!”

Did you know that the hair weave business is a multi-billion dollar industry?  As a result some women spend thousands on them. Check this young lady out. The original article has been removed, so I am posting a link to her home page. Check out the business model. You will not believe the cost.

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