23 November 2006

"Join A Network Group And Save Yourself Legwork"

Think about this for a moment, everything you have done or ever achieved has come by making use of a network of people, contacts, colleagues and so on. A computer on its own is termed a 'dumb' terminal as it is unable to function like a computer that is part of a network. If you connect two computers together, you can share, garther, communicate, collaborate, develop and manage resources, increase business, are you getting the picture, your success in business or career is directly propotional to the size and quality of your network.

Need more proof? Well, ask yourself, why is the likes of Google and Rupert Murdock of Sky and others buying up online network communities otherwise known as social networking websites, paying $Billions of dollars for businesses that have only been around a few years, and predominantly online. It is primarily similar to the analogy of the computers in a network. Networking sites are a phenomenon which have gradually crept up on us allowing people to communicate, share, develop themselves personally and professionally, and also do business. Does that sound like an opportunity to you? It is a massive one, where the owners and investors can be the gateway, the main portal hub for people going online. I am sure you have heard of friendsreunited and spin offs that have created as a result, for instance, they have a job section for you to find jobs, so not only can you find friends and family, but you can find jobs, potential long term partners as well as opportunities to chat with people with similar interest.

So why is this is so important for you looking to become competitive and secure your dream job in the 21st century. Well the main reason is, your dream job and dream contact could be lurking on these networking sites. A growing number of savvy recruiters are now utilising these mediums to find their candidates, and so if you are not a part of the network you may loose out to other equally savvy candidates.

Even more wise, is to find niche sites for your interest or career, like engineers, they have the Institute of engineering and technology and various more specific sites. So you need to realise the importance of this so that you don't loose out on a big opportunity.

Networking sites are not the only thing you should be aware of, but also you need to be in tune with other sources of educational material or training, whatever it might be, you need to find a source you can rely upon when needed. For instance, if you need to learn or get your CV done, who do you turn to for advice? If you need a second opinion about a career move who do you ask? If you are looking for a top job, who do you speak with? And so on.. You see every successful business person has a network, it is what they use to save themselves legwork. Do you think Donald Trump, Sir Alan Sugar, Bill Gates, Prince Charles, Tony Blair, Your MD, Your Manager have a network, you can bet top dollar that they all have a ready stream of advisors to turn. So are they any different to you, maybe in terms of bank balance, besides this, ofcourse not. And so, does it not make sense that you have a team of your own. If you wish to get ahead in the 21st century job market you will need to assemble your own dream team.

In Tony Buzan and Raymond Keene's excellent book on geniuses, it's titled, "the book of geniuses and how to unleash your own". They describe the makeup or characteristics of leading world famous geniuses such as Albert Einstein, Michael Faraday, Charles Darwin, Andrew Carnegie, Leonardo da Vinci, Michealangelo, Abraham Lincoln, Dante Alighieri, Socrates, Plato, Achimedes and Aristotle to name but a few..One of the main features of life was that they were surrounded by brilliant minds or mastermind group as they put it in the book. For instance, Lao-Tzu had Confucius and Buddha, Plato had Socrates, Alexander the Great had Aristotle, and so on.. Bill Gates was not only surrounded by some of the brilliant minds on the planet he hired them too.

And so you see, this is a path well throudened, no need to re-invent the wheel. In order to get ahead in the 21st century job market, you need to surround yourselves with brilliant minds as well as contacts whom just might hold the keys to finding you your dream job.

Look forward to speaking with you soon on another exciting tip.


15 November 2006

"The strength of a man or woman is determind not by what he or she possesses, but by what it takes to discourage him or her...Author Unknown"

"Do not be afraid to make mistakes or fail."

This is the second tip as we discuss the most essential tips needed for securing your dream job and building a succesful business. Some people will agree with the above quote and some will not, and so although this post will be useful for anyone looking to learn the secrets behind getting ahead in the 21st century job market, it is more pertinent to those who might question the above statement.

And so you might say, you don't want to fail or you wish to avoid failing at all cost. Well if you take this view, and more importantly if you stick with this viewpoint then you are far likely to achieve less in your lifetime. So what would have been your legacy? Some people are just happy getting by, and it is the same people who wonder how these successful people manage to achieve so much and acquire far more. As you read on you will begin to discover how this is done, and what you need to do if you really want to compete in the 21st century job market.

As i have mentioned in previous posts, you are no longer competing with your neighbour(s), we live in a globalised economy which means that you are now cometing with candidates from around the world, and therefore you are going have to look at ways of improving yourself, gaining new knowledge and crucially learning how to market yourself far better than the rest of the competition.

For instance, i will always urge people to attend interviews, sometimes just for the sake of it, as it helps you in improving your skills and gives you more confidence for when you might really need to make that all important move! A lot of people get scared of interviews, and so how do you deal with this fear? The only way is to go for more interviews, as you will learn from your mistakes, it's like anything, the more you do the better you become. So don't be put off by attending interviews, it is part of your learning process, and it is important you view this as part of your learning. In the end you will become so good that you can teach other people. I speak from experience, as at one point in my career i was attending lots of interviews, it was a phase in my life when i was undecided about what i really wanted to do careerwise. The strange thing looking back now when i attended those interviews, some of which i was successful, and others where they said no, it has given me much confidence that i can show others, and almost like an expert in the field, reason i guess why i can share this post with you.

You see, if you are going to be successful at anything in life you need to do it regardless of the consequences, as human beings no one likes rejection, being told NO everytime, or having the phone dropped on you etc...But you have to go through this period in order to reach your destiny. I also read somewhere, if you are succeeding all the time then it probably means you are not trying hard enough or extending yourself. Real success is surviving, succeeding against all odds, isn't that why when we hear about people who have done so well in their lives, we scramble for their books and autographs. You see you can have success, anyone can claim relative success, but true admirable success comes from going the extra mile, going further than normal, being bold, underterred by negative comments or feedback, this shows courage, the ability to rise beyond the ashes of failure gets you far and way beyond others who are happy to stay safe. Indeed, Sir Winston Churchill was quoted as saying: "Success is going from failure to failure without loosing your enthusiasm". Success is the summation of all your failures. So be bold and dare to be different.

In John Harrison's excellent book: "How To Stop Working And Make A £Million Pounds Instead" he highlights this so well in a section of his book - it's ok to fail. He talks of Sir Richard Branson, apparently most of his Virgin businesses actually fail, but he remains one of the UK's richest men because his other businesses do far well than the ones that fail. Another person he mentioned, a personal favourite of mine. He is called the $billion dollar man because of his work for his clients over the years which has enabled him to arguably claim the title of World's highest paid self published author. If you want to learn anything about marketing you need to study Ted Nicholas, he really is the master. But apparently, despite all his successes he is perhaps responsible for more failed advertisements than any other author or copywriter in the world. So do you get the picture, the more you fail, the more you are likely to get nearer your goal, you have to try, banish that fear, look at every situation as a learning experience. A bit like children, we can learn a thing or two from them in the way they never seem to give up!

So the next time you have to attend an interview or make a presentation or whatever it might be, view it as a learning experience. No one knows it all, no matter how experienced or qualified they may be, so while you are on the journey called life, look at every encounter as an education. It will change the way you look at things and you just might be surprised at the results!


09 November 2006

"How To Develop Your Non-Financial Resources And Acquire Untold Riches"

This is the first of many job seeking tips which i will be discussing over the next few posts. They do not follow any particular order and so you can arrange them according to your own preference. It is not the position in which they appear as oppose to the wholesome importance of mastering these tips if you wish to get ahead in your career or indeed your business. By no means are these tips conclusive but they are essential if you wish to secure your dream job and have a successful career in the 21st century.

Some people might say why do i need to learn all this stuff and develop my non financial resource, if i have money and all the material things i need and want then surely i am fine, and with all intent and purposes a success. Well that might be true to a point but you miss the important message and potential long lasting success you can have if only you realise that you need to develop your innerself before you can be truly successful.

How many rich people have you heard of or seen on TV that just do not seem content or happy with their lot - the answer: loads. The issue is not that they don't have money or wealth etc...but they developed their financial resources before working on their non-financials, this is partly the reason why there is an ever growing increase of psychologists and rehab centres springing up everywhere.....

The Apprentice:

Do you remember watching the programme where contestants work at tasks with the aim of securing a lucrative job with a business tycoon. The UK version had Sir Alan Sugar as the tycoon, but it was something he mentioned which also proves this point, it was during one of the tasks when the budding apprentices were sent to an east end market to sell goods and beforehand, it showed Sir Alan visiting the market where apparently he had plied his trade and selling skills. He basically said, he could re-accumulate his wealth even if he had to restart all over again.

So why would he say that, initially, i thought this is a man with incredible riches and massive confidence in his ability. But, when you think of it deeply, you begin to realise that he could certainly do it, as what he has developed all those years growing up in the tough streets of the east end of London was his people skills, life skills, essential for the journey which is life. Therefore, i personally have no doubt in him when he says he could re-accumulate his wealth all over again.

What about Sir Richard Branson, Anita Roddick, Bill Gates, Ted Nicholas, George Soros, to name but a few, do you think they could re-accumulate their wealth if they all had to start over again? Ofcourse they can, they will obviously face challenges, but no more than what they have had to face in reaching the heights they have reached.

The Story:

To further show you how developing your non financial resources is critical to your success in your career or business i wish to share with you a story i came across from an excellent book i read, called Dream Making in a Dream Taking World, by Dr. Price. It follows and answers why you need to work on developing your life skills, your people skills, why for instance a lawyer might need to attend a workshop on communication skills, or why an engineer should read plays by shakespeare, or why an accountant should watch a DVD on leadership skills.

You may have heard of the story of the "swallows of capistrano". It is the story of these tiny birds on their migration habits. Each year, the swallows fly 6,000 miles from Buenos Aires, Argentina to San Juan Capistrano, in southern California. Most of the journey is over open ocean and for a long time Researchers could not work out how they managed this trip. The birds could not swim, and they could not fly 6000 miles non-stop.

It was later that Researchers found out that the swallows on their journey carried twigs in their beaks, and so when they got tired they would drop the twig into the water and float on them until they were rested. After a while, they would take off again until they reached their destination.

Like swallows, people are on a long journey, so like twigs are to swallows, soft skills are to people, without them, you are likely to sink! You see having life skills enables you to move from one career to another, they are portable, for example, if an auto mechanic suddenly decided to change career, and there is a good chance this might happen to you, long gone are the days of job for life, and all research shows that people are likely to change careers at least 10 times in their lifetime, and those are conservative estimates, it is the soft skills that will enable you to move on, as once you have the communication skills, the interpersonal skills to back you up the transition is easier.

Soft skills vs Hard skills

I am not saying that hard skills are non-essential ofcourse they are, if you are a car mechanic you need to know your hard job specific skills, and if you are an accountant the same applies or whatever career you are in, but the difference between those climbing the ladder of success and those stuck at the bottom of the ladder of success are the soft skills.

Those people with far developed people skills are likely to be in position of power and moving upwards in their careers. Let me give you a little assignment, in your company where you work try to examine your managers, directors and the CEOs of the business and try to determine what seperates them from the rest of the group, by and large you will find it is their soft skills, and not necessarily any particular hard skills. To be in a position of authority you need to have people skills, life skills to be able to manage, show vision and lead your team.

There is a great saying - the people that know the how's will always work for the people that know the why's. Not all the directors of a company will have the hard specific skills needed for their business to succeed, but i bet you they know a man who knows how! Look at our leaders today, presidents, prime ministers, they all have highly developed soft skills, i mean you can't do a course in how to be a preseident or how to become a prime minister. So what skills do you need for these roles, well it is exactly the skills we have been talking about, i.e. good organisational skills, good communication skills, good time management skills, good problem-solving skills, good sales skills, good listening skills and good leadership skills...So does it not make sense to work on developing your non-financial skills?.

Tony Buzan and Raymond Keene are world experts on the study of intelligence and IQ, you can look them up, they have produced hundreds of material on the subject of the brain and intelligence. In one of their studies they concluded that there were 10 types of intelligence, however only 2 gets tested most of the time, and so most of the tests we receive were not conclusive on a persons abilities. But they pointed out one characteristic which they regard as being key, and that was the interpersonal intelligence, this in short is the ability to relate to other people, and alongside this was the intrapersonal intelligence they described these 2 as perhaps most essential as they help in facilitating the other skills and intelligence that they mentioned (to be discussed in later posts).

It is really amazing stuff, and gives everyone hope, especially those who have been discarded or abandoned by the school system. If you read about most of the succesful people on earth, so many of them do not have high IQs in the traditional areas which are often tested in our schools, not that these are not important, they are, but it is to show you that having a high IQ or exceptional hard skills does not necessarily determine your success in work or business.

So how can you improve your non-financial resources, well some of the answers have been expressed already, but in all you need to develop your self help training. Self-help is essentially helping yourself to succeed, whether it is having a mentor, an advisor, consultant work with you you still need to be responsible for the design of your course, your training, where you go and what you read. Benjamin Franklin once said: "You will be the same in 5 years, except the books you read and the people you meet". I think that kind of sums it up. You need to learn from others, your peers and your mentors, a prudent person will learn from their own experience, but a wise person will learn from others.

Furthermore, you are likely to find, and this may prove controversial, that people with soft skills earn more money than people with hard skills. For a start all the directors, CEOs are people with soft skills. But you do the research yourselves, you are likely to discover all those sales related positions within your company are those with the highest wages and perks. I am also talking from experience having started my working career within a software company.

There are 3 main types of jobs, all coming under one of these three headings, you can disguise them all you like, it will fit under one of these: sales, administration and technical. All essential in any business, but somehow, the sales positions when you consider the OTEs etc.. earn far more.

Now does that mean we should all become salesmen and women, ofcourse not, but what i do mean, is we need to perhaps think more like salespeople, unfortunately sales staff get a bad headline, but if you think about it we are sales people, everyone lives by selling something. As a child you would have requested for your favourite toy or gift and somehow you were able to negotiate, setup a deal with your parent, in which they bought you the present, these are sales skills in action.

As we get older, we seem to loose these soft skills we had in abundance whilst growing up, however, unless you get specific training you loose it for good. Sales people on the otherhand get regular re-programming of these essential skills through tailored training for their jobs etc...And so it is no wonder why some of them are some of the highest paid people in business...So regardless of what you do, you need to basically learn these skills which sales people seem to have autonomy over, as these are the skills which will help you get a promotion, help you build confidence in yourself, help with your organisational skills, listening skills etc.. and more importantly could also help you in landing your ultimate DREAM job.

Finally, to wrap up this particular post, i would like to leave you with an excellent quote from Ansel Adams, it follows:

"You don't make a photograph just with a camera
You bring to the act of Photography all the pictures you have seen,
the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved."

Hope you enjoyed reading this post.


08 November 2006

“There is one quality that one must possess to win, and that is definiteness of purpose,
the knowledge of what one wants and a burning desire to achieve it.”
Napoleon Hill

Essential Tips for the 21st Century Jobseeker:

As mentioned in my first post, we are building a forum for you, mainly where everyone can learn and contribute their experiences within the job market. My personal experience as a recruitment consultant and more recently as an International consultant is that there is undoubtedly an abundance of highly gifted individuals out there all searching for their next career move or simply a new job.

However, the one thing that lets most down is their soft skills and ability to be able to market themselves effectively on a piece of paper. As any recruiter out there will testify, this can be so frustrating when working to targets and monthly deadlines, and you just cannot get the quality you need to secure the deal.

A lot of very good candidates do not get selected for jobs because of this situation as they knowingly or unknowingly do not tailor their CVs for the role they are applying for, and rely on a generic template to get them their dream job. It would seem attimes people can not be borthered with the bit of time it might take in updating themselves on paper and generally improving their skills.

Over the next few posts i am going to go into a bit more detail about some of the most essential job seeking tips you need to learn and develop if you are going to compete within the 21st century jobmarket. Most of this information has come from observing both the business and jobmarket world. Some of it will be what you already know, but i can promise that you will also be gaining a lot of new insight knowledge, ideas and information some of which will blow your mind! So sit back and enjoy the read, as always i look forward to hearing your sucess stories.....


07 November 2006

This is a forum where people can visit to learn and share their experiences of the jobmarket. As the world gets smaller with global competition right at our doorstep, you will need to develop new essential skills and techniques in order to compete. Your competition is no longer your next door neighbour but millions of highly educated and qualified graduates from around the world.

But do not despair, with the insight knowledge you will gain from visiting this site i am hoping it will empower you to take charge of your career and ultimately your destiny.

I will welcome all feedback, comments and any additional material which any viewer may see as benefiting other people with intention of learning about improving their lives and careers.

I will ofcourse aim to update this site as regularly as possible, so please remember to come back.

In addition, you will find useful links that offer amazing services, so take advantage of these opportunities.

Look forward to hearing your success stories.