In times of career crisis – when you're unemployed, or facing major upheaval on the org chart – you probably long to be bored. Then things settle down, and you get into a routine, and boredom doesn't seem that great after all. The problem, of course, is that once you're feeling meh about your job or your career, it's hard to motivate to do anything about it. Taking a class or setting up networking coffees seems like an awful lot of work. It'd be easier to just put in your time at the old desk and then go home and start methodically working your way through your Netflix queue.
If you're interested in work-life balance issues, you've probably read your fair share of articles exhorting you to live in the moment and be here now and so on. There's just one problem: professional life demands that we live in the moment, and also live in next week, and also in six months from now. Take, for example, the problem of planning vacation time. To get it approved and not irritate your co-workers, you have to submit your request for summer fun while snow's still on the ground. Of course, even if you do that, there's no guarantee that you'll get what you asked for. For instance, your evil co-worker might get in ahead of you and scoop up all the good days. In this week's roundup, we look at advice for coping with that situation, plus job search tools you're probably overlooking, and how to grow your professional network without ignoring your personal life.
Want to help the environment and your career at the same time? This Earth Day, do more than recycling your disposable coffee cup and heeding your environmentally conscious co-worker's admonition to think twice before you print out emails. Consider a career change to a green job, and give yourself a better shot at job security while saving the planet at the same time. You'd be surprised at how relatively little specialized experience or education you need to change to some (although of course not all) greener occupations.
Strange as it might seem to most of us, there are people out there who love various parts of the job search process. Some like meeting new people, or feel energized by the interview process; others see exciting new potential in every networking connection or job posting. But even those job-searching Pollyannas would be hard-pressed to find an upside to one part of the process: writing a cover letter that grabs readers' attention, expresses their qualifications, and doesn't mindlessly repeat the same material as their resume. In this week's roundup, we look at one expert's advice on writing a cover letter that reads as if it's written by a human, plus a few reasons why your job hunt is stalled, and tips to make your resume stand out ... even when the hiring manager only takes eight seconds to skim it.
Even if you love your job, Monday morning probably isn't your favorite time of the week. For those who supposedly work Monday through Friday, the first morning back after a weekend feels like an abrupt shift, sort of like a miniature version of returning to work after vacation, only without the Instagram-worthy memories. If you're having trouble envisioning success this morning, these quotes will inspire you to turn your thoughts in the right direction.
Even if you're the best employee in the history of paid work, you might get fired at some point in your career. Sometimes, it's no one's fault: you turned out to be a bad fit for the role and vice versa. Other times, you might have made a mistake, and paid a steep price for it. But the worst scenario is the one that's not your fault at all – but that still potentially haunts your job search afterward. In this week's round-up, we look at what one career expert advises job seekers who've been fired, plus how to repair a damaged professional relationship and how to give tough feedback.