Posted tagged ‘Job seekers’

Connie’s Career Corner

May 2, 2013


“More ideas can lead to a better result.”

Tip for the day:  If you want a different outcome, try a different approach.  Unknown


Q:   Dear Connie:  I get so frustrated when my team is given a project to complete.  My teammates do not seem to work as hard as I work.  Can you give me any suggestions on how to get the rest of my team to work like I do?

A:   Dear Frustrated:  You might not be happy if your whole team approached the task exactly the same way that you do.  The best outcome comes from having diversity in your group, and this includes the different styles people use to approach projects.

To help reduce your frustration, take a little time and understand the different styles people use when completing a project.  There are many assessments you and your co-workers can take to help identify your work styles.  You might want to check out free assessments on the Internet.  Your human resource department may have someone who has been trained in giving assessments to further help your team understand how each team member approaches his work.

Here are four of the approaches people take in completing their work.  The Self-appointed Leader wants to get everything planned out and assigned (including a timeline for completions) while expecting everyone to work and work hard.  The Thinker wants to gather and process the information before any part of the project has begun.  A Thinker will have a hard time understanding how the Self-appointed Leader can plan and start something that may not even be the plan that is needed.  The People Pleaser will want to be sure that everyone in the group has the opportunity to share his ideas.  The People Pleaser will also want the whole team to be happy with their individual assignments.  The Socializer may not appear to be working on his portion of the project until just before the deadline.  He may then be willing to do what it takes to meet the deadline.  The Socializer will probably want to plan a lunch or party to celebrate the project being finished.

If you want to become an even more valued employee, you should learn more about different work styles.  Use your knowledge to help make your team the best it can be.  If you give the Thinker the task of doing the team research, you will have a team member whose knowledge base can help the team avoid delays due to lack of information.  Listen to feedback from the People Pleaser.  If you match the project assignments with what your team members prefer to do, they will be happier.  Happier workers generally turn out the best work.

You may have a lot of great ideas, but think of multiplying those ideas by the number of people on your team.  There does not have to be a right and wrong way to do most projects, but there is usually a good, better and best way to each project.  Stay focused on whether your team members get their assignments finished by deadline, not on whether their daily accomplishments match yours.  It is the quality of the outcome that truly matters.

Connie’s Career Corner is your source for career information.  E-mail questions for future columns to .

Connie’s Career Corner “It’s never too late to follow your dreams.”

April 3, 2013


“There is no such thing as too old to learn.”

Tip for the day:  It is never too late to follow your dreams.


Q:  Dear Connie:  I never finished my degree.  It would be so helpful in securing a better job but I am too old to go back to school.  I will be turning 45 this year and do not think I would be able to do the work.  Do you think I could do it?


A:  Dear Need to Finish my Education:  Going back to school is a big decision.  Many people have gone back to school who are your age and much older.  Belmont had a young lady of 70 to complete her degree several years back. 

There are many skills that you have picked up in your life that will help you manage the stresses of college.  Your organizational skills are probably much better developed than when you attended college as a young person.  You will also see the full value of the almost lost opportunity of your first college experience. 

Consider all of the things that might be barriers to your success in finishing your degree:

  • Extra expense that results from attending college
  • Less time to be available to your family
  • Amount of support from your family and friends
  • Your own dedication to completing this goal

Work with the financial aid department to inquire about the amount of funds from PELL, scholarships and loans that are available to you to put toward paying tuition and books.  There are many sources of funding available and the financial aid officer will be able to suggest many different avenues for you to research. 

It is important to have a realistic idea of the time commitment required.  Talk with the schools academic advisors to get information about the classes you will need to complete your degree. Discuss the amount of time that will be needed to finish out-of-class assignments. 

Let your family know that you have always dreamed of finishing your degree.  Express your belief that education is important for everyone and can lead to a better life.  Ask them to support you in this effort.

The main thing you will need is to believe in yourself and your ability to accomplish this valuable goal.  You need to go into this venture with the determination that you have what it takes to complete your program of study.  You will build your self-confidence along the way as you see that you can complete the assignments and can do them well. You can do it! 


Connie’s Career Corner is your source for career information.  E-mail questions for future columns to .

Connie’s Career Corner: Work is Draining my Energy

February 25, 2013


“Work is draining my energy.”


Tip for the day:  Invest some time in yourself, you are worth the investment.

Q:  Dear Connie: I am so busy at work that I do not seem to have time for my family or myself.  Does everyone live this way?

A:   Dear Busy as a Bee:  Many people do feel the way that you feel.  The job they do on a daily basis becomes so intense that it takes over their life.  There are valid reasons for getting into this pattern with ones work.  There is the drive to succeed that motivates a person to want to not only do a good job but an outstanding job.  There is the fear that if ones performance is not excellent, they will not get the promotion they desire.  There is the fear that if the company is looking to cut employees, they will cut the people who are not producing and you do not want to be seen as “one of those people.”

While having a strong work ethic is highly valued by employers, having a work-life balance is important to you and your wellbeing.  You do not want to accomplish everything possible at your place of employment at the expense of losing your relationship with your family and friends.

We all feel like we do not have enough time to do the things that we want to do in life.  Yet, truth is we have to make time for the things we want to do.  If a person needs to mow his lawn, he may say, “I am too tired to do that today.”  If the person receives a phone call from a friend who offers him a free ticket to the Titans game, he will probably say, “What time do we leave?”

Now is a good time for you to stop and evaluate what is important to you.  Make a list of the things you really value.  Schedule some time for your family and for the things that bring you happiness.  You need to also save some time for yourself.  You are worth the investment.  Do not skip your vacations or work too many hours because you will drain your energy and will actually be less productive at your job.  Activities outside of work renew your energy and your spirit.

Work toward having a work-life balance and you and your loved ones will be happier and healthier.  Even your employer will benefit from your new approach to life.


Connie’s Career Corner is your source for career information.  E-mail questions for future columns to .


Start networking with local employers today!

November 14, 2011

NCAC offers a series of networking meetings known as Career Connections which provide insight and knowledge about the world of work from career and job search experts in the community. Below is a list of the upcoming Career Connections at the agency’s locations:


Topic: “Resume Review,” presented by Susan Jett, Corporate Recruiter for Emdeon.

When: Tuesday, November 15, 2011 at 9:30 a.m.

Where: NCAC Workforce Campus, 621 Mainstream Drive, Nashville, TN 37228

Bring your resume to this Tuesday’s Career Connection where Susan Jett will present a hands-on resume review workshop. You don’t want to miss this one!

Coffee and networking begin at 9:00 a.m.

Call (615) 862-8890 for more information.


Topic: “Think Like a Recruiter for a Competitive Advantage” presented by Danielle Underwood with Staffmark.

When: Tuesday, November 15, 2011 at 9:30 a.m.

Where: Tennessee Career Center in Rutherford Co., 1313 Old Fort Parkway, Murfreesboro, TN 37129

Coffee and networking begin at 9:00 a.m.

Call (615) 898-8081 for more information.


Topic: “Modern Job Searching” presented by Mr. Walter Tieck, Consultant and Career Transition Group Leader

When:  Tuesday, November 15, 2011 at 10 a.m.

Where: Tennessee Career Center in Wilson Co., 155 Legends Drive, Suite M, Lebanon, Tn 37087

Call (615) 444-9355 for more information.

Tips to Remember

– Dress to impress as you will be connecting with employers who may select you to interview for an open position at their company.

– It’s always a good idea to bring your resume along and any other necessary information to complete employment applications on the spot if the opportunity may arise.

– Don’t forget your positive attitude and a smile :)