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5 Ways You Know It’s the Job That’s the Problem and Not You

Fantasizing about a new job is more common than many might think. I know I’ve been sitting at my desk in the past, dreaming about what it would be like to work anywhere else at that moment. The idea of something new is enticing, but sometimes it isn’t you or me that is the problem.

Sometimes it is the job that is problematic.

If you are not feeling satisfied at your job and are thinking about sending out resumes, then here are 5 ways you can know that it’s the job that is the problem and not you.

#1. You haven’t been learning anything. People are at their happiest when they are able to see progression in their lives. You might not be able to reach a goal, but if you can see progress being made, you can keep pressing forward. When there isn’t progression, there is dissatisfaction. I feel particularly satisfied when I can embrace my creativity and curiosity. If your key traits aren’t being encouraged to develop, then it might be time for a career switch.


#2. You aren’t performing like you did in the past. At some point, I think we all enter a phase of being on “autopilot.” We begin to cruise along because we’re tired, burnt out maybe, and the job is easy enough that you don’t need to dedicate mental resources to get it done. If you’re not engaged at work and your performance is lacking because of it, then take a break. If that doesn’t help, then trust me – it’s time to find a new job.


#3. You aren’t feeling valuable. I’m not saying that you need to have a smile on your face at all times and have happy happy joy joy feelings all over the place. You should feel like you’re a valuable part of your time. When you doing something great, people should at least say “Thank you.” That’s not too much to ask, right? When people feel undervalued, they are more likely to burn out. They’re also more likely to start taking more sick days, consider stealing office supplies, or play games on Facebook while on the clock. You are valuable. Find another place to work.


#4. You just want a paycheck. It always amazes me at the mental fortitude people have, being stuck in a terrible job, but staying there because they need the money. This kind of job is the least rewarding at all. It causes people to dread waking up in the morning. If you aren’t excited about your job in some way, then it’s time to find something new when you can find something with comparable pay.


#5. You hate your supervisor. Most people, at least in my experience, tend to quit managers and supervisors instead of jobs. Leaders must be willing to develop their teams and be supportive, stepping in only when a situation escalates. Far too many supervisors refuse to delegate and stretch themselves too thinly, resulting in conflict, lower expectations, and high turnover rates.


Now I’m not saying that going to work is supposed to be a blissful experience… but it should be a satisfying one. If you’re not feeling satisfied, but you can remember the times when you did feel that way, then there’s a good chance it’s the job that has changed instead of you. Get out of there if you can and find something that is fulfilling because life is too short to settle for something mediocre.


Have you quit a bad job in the past? What signs helped you recognize it was time to go? I’d love to hear some of your thoughts about dealing with circumstances like these if you have a moment or two to share them here.  

6 Ways You Can Spot a Bad Boss During an Interview

2 out of 3 former employees of the average company say that the reason why they left their job was because they had a bad boss. Whether that perception is justified or not, it is just as important to avoid having a bad boss as it is to find a job you are passionate about to reduce the amount of stress your employment places on your life. During an interview, you’re often trying to convince a boss that you’re the best prospect for an open position, right?

But what if you took that interview opportunity to determine if that boss was the right type of supervisor for you? Bad bosses will give you red flags during an interview that can be spotted. If you can see them, then you can avoid a potentially devastating employment situation. Here are the ways you can spot a bad boss during your next interview.

#1. Listen to your gut. Most people know that a boss is going to be a bad one just by their natural instincts. The only problem is that most of us are willing to ignore this instinct because we need to earn a paycheck to support ourselves and our family. There’s a good chance that if you take a job with a bad boss, you’ll be out of work in 6 months or less anyway, so listen to your instincts. Don’t take a job your gut is telling you to avoid.

#2. Be aware of personality conflicts. Certain personalities naturally conflict with each other because of the way information is given and received. People who are more dominant will struggle to work with people who are more controlling. People who are more supportive can struggle to work with people who need tremendous amounts of information to make a decision. Know yourself and then look for cues from the boss about their personality. If you sense conflict, then get out of there because you’ll have a communication gap as long as you report to that boss.

#3. Have the interviewer describe the actual job requirements. If you ask a boss about their leadership style or direct questions about their personality, you probably won’t receive a 100% authentic answer. Interviewers are selling a job opening that they may be desperate to fill. They’ll tell you virtually anything you want to hear if they think you’re a top candidate. Ask instead about what a worker does every day in this position. Think about how you’ll learn the job. By making your questions about the job instead of the boss, you’ll both be able to get a clear picture of what you’d look like in that job.

#4. Know the company. Many candidates fail on one important step of the interviewing process: they don’t research the company. Just about everything you need to know about an open position can be found on a company’s website, through reviews on a site like LinkedIn, or even a couple of targeted Google searches. You should know before going into an interview whether or not you’ll be a good fit on that team or within that organization.

#5. Show up early and ask questions. You should always show up 15-30 minutes for an interview. This will give you the chance to meet a few folks who might be working for the boss in question already. You can ask questions about what they like and don’t like about their job so you get a clearer picture of what to expect going into your interview.

#6. Language says a lot. How a boss treats you during an interview is likely how you’ll be treated when working for them. If the boss is defensive, aggressive, or tries to dominate you during an interview, even if it’s just in body language, then you’re more likely to be treated as an expendable resource. Look for a boss that is relaxed, somewhat conversational, and willing to engage in a dialogue to avoid many common red flags that are overlooked.

By paying attention to the red flags that bad bosses send out during the interview process, you can avoid many future headaches. Keep these tips in mind during your next interview and hopefully you’ll be able to find the dream job you’ve always wanted.

5 Ways You Know It’s Time To Find a New Job

More than half of the current workforce are passive job seekers. It means that although there aren’t active efforts to find a new job, these folks are going to consider a reasonable offer that comes their way. Another 25% of people are active job seekers while being currently employed. Only 15-25% of the current job force isn’t considering a change right now when it comes to their employment.

Yet it might be time to start looking for a new job. Have you noticed any of these 5 specific indicators that let you know it might be time to go?

#1. There is no opportunity to expand your learning. A job shouldn’t be a dead-end experience. It should be exciting because there is something new to learn every day. If you are feeling like your creativity is being suppressed and you aren’t encouraged to look at new ideas, then a new job can help to restore that love of learning that you may have lost.

#2. You never perform at your highest potential. There are two ways to underperform. You either aren’t experienced enough to get the job done quickly enough or you purposely slow yourself down so that your output meets expectations. If you can fulfill your job expectations in a couple of hours, but it takes the rest of the team a full 8 hours to do the same thing, then you won’t be happy or engaged with your team. It’s time to find a job that challenges you instead.

#3. You don’t feel valued. If you can complete a job in 2 hours and get told to stay busy even though other workers can’t get the job done in 8 hours, then there’s a good chance you’ll feel undervalued. Maybe your contributions are part of the foundation of success the company experiences, yet you don’t even get half a “thank you” in return. If you don’t feel valued, then you aren’t valued. If you’re a leader who doesn’t feel valued, then that negativity filters down to the team. It’s time to find a job where you will be valued.

#4. You’re in it for the cash. Working to meet financial needs is important, but it shouldn’t be the only reason why you’re currently employed. There should be a certain joy in being able to get a job completed. You should be curious every day, challenged every day, and engaged in what you do. If you get up to go to work because all you want is a paycheck, then just about any job you take is going to eventually seem pointless. Find a job that you have a passion about, even if that means changing your career path.

#5. You hate your boss more than the average person. Just about everyone hates their boss at some point in time. If you constantly hate your boss, however, and you dread going to work because you don’t want to interact with that individual, then it’s time to transfer or find a new place to work. 3 out of 4 working professionals say that the most stressful component of their job is the interactions they have with their boss.

Jobs that aren’t stimulating or cause emotional stress are jobs that could eventually be harmful to your health. If you’re

Deciding On the Right Company To Work For

With the economy in the dump worldwide many people are desperately looking for work and will take almost anything that comes along, but the fact is that no matter what you do 40 hours (or more) of your week are going to be spent at your job. That’s a lot of hours, to be sure, and so if you can you should really make sure that your new job is the right ‘fit’ for you.

Let’s face it, even if you like what you do working at a place that you don’t like is akin to eating your favorite breakfast cereal with water instead of milk; sure you can do it but it’s not very satisfying and takes all the joy out of it. Plus it’s a soggy mess.

With that in mind, here are 5 key aspects you should keenly look at before starting any new job.

1) The Company culture. This is very important for a number of reasons. If, for example, you’re an outgoing and laid-back person but the company is buttoned-down and rigid you’re going to have problems fitting in. If you like casual Friday’s and they have a strict dress code you’ll soon find yourself resentful and unhappy.

2) Company Management.  If we’re being honest dealing with management is always a bit of a problem but some companies make it easier than others. For example, some have policies that make approaching management and voicing new ideas or grievances a lot easier. Some don’t however, and if you work for a company that puts management on a pedestal you better be prepared to sign yourself up for primal scream therapy pronto.

3) The Products and / or services you sell. Another deal breaker, if your new company sells products that you wouldn’t even give to your mother-in-law you may soon find yourself regretting your decision to work there.  Being able to take pride in what you do is an essential part of happiness on the job.

4) The Industry you work in. Similar to your products and services your company sells, if you work in an industry that is negative your work life will be negative also. If you’re a fervent non-smoker, for example, you probably won’t be happy working for a tobacco company. If, however, you do smoke and they have ‘free cigarette Fridays’ then by all means go for it!

5) The Size of the company. This depends on what role you see yourself playing in the overall scheme of things.  If you’re content being lost in the herd then working for a company that employs hundreds or even thousands of people may not be a problem, but if you want to make a difference (even if it’s small) you probably should work for a smaller company where your voice will be heard.

No matter where you work if you feel valuable and appreciated you will be happier and more satisfied no matter the product or service. If you don’t, even working for a teeth whitening company won’t keep a smile on your face.  Choose wisely and good luck.

6 Habits of Successful Job Seekers

Habit 1: Be Responsible for your own Job Search

 There are many things that can be learned when searching for a job, like what types of positions suit you best and what aspects are important when it comes to a job. This is why you being responsible for your own job search is so vital; if you let others take the reins when it comes to this step, you might miss out on some important information and overall, you will be more lost and confused when it comes to the actual interview process itself.

Habit 2: Set a Goal

Along the job search, there are many things that can happen that can stray you off the right path. This is why it is so important to set a goal when it comes to seeking a job. Make sure that you tell yourself that you want to complete the job searching task by a certain date or time period. By setting this goal, you are telling yourself that you respect your job search and that you take it seriously and as a priority. Without a goal in tow, you job search could lag on for longer than is necessary.

Habit 3: Stay Focused

There are several things that could happen when you are searching for a job, family troubles or someone getting married or wonderful vacations that you have not taken yet could be on the horizon. The point is to not deviate from the job search at all and stay focused as much as possible. Looking for a job can be very stressful and this is why focus needs to be your top priority. The only way to complete a successful job search is to stay focused until your job search goal has been met.

Habit 4: Be Organized

There are many things that have to be noted and remembered and taken into consideration when searching for a job that is why being organized is such an important aspect in successfully finding a job. Stay organized by writing down every interview that you go on, every job that you apply to and even every person that you talk to. Write down what was said and the name of the person who said it complete with a date. When you look back on your notes, you will notice that the organizational aspect of everything will make your job search that much easier.

Habit 5: Be Good to Yourself

When searching for a job, you might get so focused that you forget to be good to yourself. Remember when you search for a job that you are the most important instrument for the job, so you need to be in tip-top condition. That means that you must get plenty of sleep, eat healthy, maybe learn yoga/meditation, and spend your downtime in nature. When you take care of yourself, you will notice your stress level going down and your overall outlook becoming more positive, which is vital to the success of getting a great job.

Habit 6: Never Give Up

At the end of the day, it can be difficult to get job that you like, even if you follow all of these habits religiously. The secret is to never give up! There are always new jobs on the horizon and new and interesting people to meet that might be your ticket to getting your dream job. Don’t give up on your search and don’t give up on yourself. If you told yourself that you are going to get a wonderful job, then stick to your goal and follow the habits until you do. Sooner or later, you will find yourself with a great job and it will be because you did not give up.

7 Ways To Work With a Recruiter

Are you stuck in a dead-end job? Do you feel like your career potential is being wasted? A recruiter is a great relationship to have because they may have access to job opportunities that you can’t find on your own. Recruiters may even have leads that are half a world away, but just a phone call within reach. Here are 7 ways that you can enhance the time you spend working with a recruiter.

#1. Always be honest. Your recruiter should be treated as a trusted adviser. This means trying to enhance your credentials isn’t going to do either of you any good. Be honest about your skills and qualifications and let the recruiter do their job for you.

#2. Keep communication transparent. Recruiters need to move quickly sometimes to get someone placed into the perfect job. Timing really is everything, which means it becomes your job to keep communication open and transparent. Your recruiter may need to contact you at a moment’s notice. This will make that happen.

#3. Take time to build a relationship. Recruiters are going to want to meet you and verify several references so that they know how to best represent you. Making time to build a relationship with your recruiter will make their presentation about you more effective and give you a more completed working relationship.

#4. There’s nothing wrong in turning a position down. We all tend to avoid disappointing the people we care about. Because of this, the relationships that we build professionally sometimes make us all feel like we’re forced to do something we don’t want to do. Recruiters do work hard to create open positions, but it’s fine to turn down a position. It’s better that a job opportunity is a right fit instead of a forced fit.

#5. Patience is definitely a virtue. Whether you’re out of work or looking for a better job, not being somewhere you want to be can create a lot of stress, frustration, and uncertainty. Recruiters want to find a good fit with a good compensation profile so that a long-term position can be successfully filled. Being patient can be difficult sometimes, but is a necessary component of the process.

#6. Be ready to go when the time is right. Great positions can sometimes open and close in a matter of hours. If you aren’t prepared to take action on that opportunity immediately, then there is a good chance that the perfect job could slip away. With updated application materials in hand, just one potential interview could be what puts you over the top.

#7. Stay committed to the process. If you aren’t 100% committed to the change you want a recruiter to help you make, then not only can you damage your own reputation, but you can also damage the recruiter’s reputation as well. Relationships are extremely important in this industry. If you aren’t quite sure what to do, take some time to confirm that you want change to happen before you proceed.

Working with a recruiter can create long-term success for you and your career. It just means you’ll need to work as hard as your recruiter to make sure you can get the perfect position. In doing so, the dream job you’ve always wanted may be just one phone call away.

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