New City on Google Maps

I had to check the location of a town yesterday and went to Google maps. Zoomed in on the UK and had to do a double take. To the west of London a new city had emerged according to Google. It was called “Town Centre”.

Town Centre

I know the current government in the UK are planning to build a few new ‘garden cities’ as they call them, but I wasn’t aware Continue reading

EU money worries

Oh dear, Brussels bureaucrats have published a report lamenting the fact that a big chunk of the EU population don’t declare the work they do and therefore Brussels doesn’t get their taxes and can’t spend it on salaries and other “important” money guzzling projects.

They discovered that of the people who were asked the question in the survey 11% don’t declare their earnings. Only 11%? I’m sure the percentage is a lot higher. Most people wouldn’t want to declare to a researcher that they’re not paying taxes. Way too risky…..

“Member States need to Continue reading

Fake hotel jobs

All these fake hotel jobs are becoming a bit of a nuisance. We keep booting them off the site, so you won’t even know they were there in the first place, but when you look around the net you’ll find many big name sites still hosting them totally unaware what a scam they are. (Haven’t they got filters, checks, etc in place?)

I just did a search for Prime Spring Hotel and sites still host these ‘vacancies’. This scam site has been taken down a while ago now, but the jobs are Continue reading

Focus on results

I had a brain-storming session with a couple of colleagues yesterday to firm up the business plan for our Training company. We listed all of the services that we offer: leadership training; assertiveness training; advanced selling skills; emotional intelligence workshops; executive coaching. After copious cups of mint tea, I sat back and yawned. To be blunt, we could have been listing widget types or electronic components.

Our clients aren’t interested in what we deliver or even how we deliver. They are interested in the results we can bring. We then thought deeply about those results. We can deliver more productive, better functioning teams, increased staff retention, individuals and teams that are more in alignment with their company objectives – and so the list of benefits go on.

The same applies to job hunters. Recruiters aren’t so interested in your job description and what you have done. They want to know the results you have effected. Think of things such as increased profitability; cost reductions; achievements against tangible targets. Give lots of examples of how you have made a difference and that’s what will set you apart from other applicants.

 

Emotional Intelligence, the EQi-2 and Empathy

In a previous blog post I talked about Pete, who has recently been made redundant. Pete needs a new job, fast. He took the EQi-2, which is a leading Emotional Intelligence assessment. It’s a great tool and easy to complete. I emailed Pete a link and taking about 20 minutes, he answered the questions online. I generated the report and then we had an in-depth discussion about the results.

The EQi measures our social and emotional abilities, how well we are able to control our emotions, how we read and interact with other people and how we manage stress. Emotionally intelligent people get on well with others, communicate effectively and have good coping strategies. The EQi is a useful tool because it gives extraordinary insight into how we relate to others, understand ourselves and deal with stress. There’s no good or bad or right or wrong. Although we do know that emotionally intelligent people tend to have a smoother path through life and are generally happier.

Pete’s score in Empathy was lower than average. This didn’t come as much of a surprise to him or me. He had totally missed all the signs that redundancy was calling his name and with hindsight he realized that he has, time and time again, misread other people’s feelings and thoughts. Pete finds it difficult to put himself into other people’s shoes. He is a kind person and his colleagues define him as the ‘nice’ guy. The thing that Pete finds difficult is trying to see things from another person’s perspective. When he was made redundant, his first reaction was, “Why me? They always pick on me!”

Pete and I spent a lot of time discussing and understanding the components of empathy. We looked at how empathy differs from sympathy; how sympathy conveys our feelings about another person’s situations and implies we know how the other person feels. Sympathy suggests pity or sorrow for someone else’s feelings. Empathy means that you can actually share the other person’s feelings. We considered lots of techniques for becoming more empathetic.

One of the key techniques is asking plenty of questions, particularly open-ended questions. This was a technique I hoped Pete would put into practice in a job interview he had coming up. Isn’t that the job of the interviewer, you may well be asking? We’ll cover this in a future blog post.

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If you are in a middle or senior executive position and looking to change paths (or even become self-employed) and would like free coaching, please email me. Fluent English speakers only, please! You can find more information by clicking here.

PSI Incorporation scam ( Cont…)

These scammers get more audacious by the day!

We highlighted the scam with PSI Incorporation (Papmac Securities and Investments) allegedly based in Wichita, Texas, USA a few days ago. Someone called Spiff White then rang (certainly not from a US phone number) to complain that we were harming their business. Yeah right. Stopping people from being scammed more like and hurting their scam income stream…..

He even demanded that we remove the blog post. No evidence given as to who they really are. And we just have to believe them…..

We then received the Continue reading

Computers spot fake facial expressions: you might be interviewed by a robot!

A study carried out by the Universities of California, Buffalo and Toronto has discovered that a computer system is more accurate at spotting fake facial expressions than people.

Leading recruiters and coaches look out for micro-expressions, the tiny little facial movements we make without realizing what we’re doing. When we’re faking a smile, our eyes tend not to crease and the areas between our eyebrows and eyelids don’t contract. As these movements occur in milliseconds, a computer can pick up on these minutiae. People find it difficult.
Continue reading

10 Redundancy Warning Signs That Suggest Your Job’s in Jeopardy

A couple of weeks ago, Pete, an ex-colleague of mine was told he was being made redundant. I predicted this four months ago, but for Pete it came as a bolt out of the blue. He had been blind to all the little hints and nuances that suggested redundancy was calling his name. Pete had laughed when I had suggested the redundancy warning signs, saying that he’d worked for the company for 15 years and the big boss would always look out for him. Continue reading

The Little-Known Factor That Predicts Career Success

Some years ago I worked for a Search and Selection firm – a business that is now defunct. Despite meeting my husband there and making life-long friends, I was deeply unhappy in my job. I dreaded making cold calls; I loathed the hypocrisy of some of the managers, the chauvinistic bullying of the Managing Director and the cutthroat pressures of having to meet weekly sales targets. My unhappiness meant I rarely met those hefty sales targets and I certainly didn’t achieve career success. I was, most definitely, a round peg in a square hole.

It wasn’t because I didn’t have the right skills or the innate ability to fulfill the job, it was because the role and the company didn’t match any of my values. Continue reading