Proof-read your resume

Tips (2)

I was talking to a co-worker the other day and she brought up a very good point “proof-read your resume”. How many of us send our resumes to friends and people-we-know-in-that-industry to review it? Just think of all the good and constructive feedback you’ll get. So, that will be this post’s opening tip:

  1. Get Feedback on your Resume: I did this when I was looking out for a job, I sent my resume to few friends and told them what I was looking for in my next role. I made sure it was on MS word and this way they could add their comments and feedback right there. My resume went through many many versions before I decided to publish it. This is one of the best “free” advice you can get from people you trust. This has a lot of advantages; they will ask you questions, give you good feedback make you re-write the whole resume if needed or simply make you fill in the gaps. You just need to be open to criticism, they are after all helping you land a good job.
  2. Long Resumes/Paragraphs: Please don’t write paragraphs after paragraphs about what you did in your previous jobs. Keep it simple, highlight your strengths and stress on skills you want to specifically work in. We want to see how you solved a problem or what your contribution was. Keep the explanation for the phone screening.
  3. Apply for the right job a.k.a Qualified Candidates: If you are a chef looking for a job in the hospitality industry, make sure you apply to jobs where you might get a call back from. We get people from all kinds of backgrounds applying for a specific role with a specific skill set. If you have multiple skills that can fit two different job categories, tailor the resume to fit, but don’t apply for the sake of applying. That’s not going to get you anywhere. And definitely don’t include irrelevant job history, it’s just eating up your resume space and making it long.

We will be posting more tips from time-to-time. If you have any questions in the meanwhile, send us an email social@inabia.com

 

 

I took a look at your resume…

TIPS (1)

Creating a resume might not be hard, but it’s not something to take casually either. Your resume is going to represent you to the hiring manager, so you need to make a good first impression through the only document that will best represent you. Managers receive a lot of resumes per job opening, they are looking for the best of the lot, and trust us, what you put on your resume and HOW you do it is important. Below are some tips from our Operations Manager who spends a lot of time reading resumes on any given day.

  1. Too Many Spelling Errors, Typos and Poor Grammar: This is resume etiquette 101. Don’t write a resume like you’re typing on your cellphone. It’s totally OKAY to use the full spelling of words, run a spell check and use a MLA guidelines book. Imagin I typ dis sentense this way n u end up not carin for what I say. Get it? If you don’t take your resume writing seriously, we won’t take you seriously.
  2. Formatting is Not Hard: Sometimes I look at a resume and wonder “what on earth happened here!!” You don’t need to use text boxes, convert it into a PDF, or worse; put your pretty picture on your resume (you think I’m joking?). Keep it simple, stick to the specifics and no amount of decoration and clip-art will get your resume anywhere. What bothers a lot of recruiters is when the formatting is not consistent throughout the document, spend some time and make it professional. If the resume looks lousy and we get the impression that you put it up hastily, no one will spend time fixing it for you, they will move on to the next one.
  3. Missing and Conflicting Details: There are tons of resume floating around that don’t have contact details, conflicting locations and inaccurate dates. This is very frustrating for us, how do we get in touch with you? Your current work location is NYC but your resume says your current address in Portland, OR? You don’t know when you’ll be available to join the next job if something works out for you? These are the basics, keep a check on it and make sure it’s updated on the resume.

We will post more resume tips for you. If you have any questions in the meanwhile, send me an email social@inabia.com

Motivated Employees

Motivate your workforce

Motivating employees is without doubt a crucial and constant challenge to any business. A motivated team means a highly productive staff that helps you achieve your business goals. So much so that many businesses have started making it a part of their business plan.

Every company has a different motivation strategy – what works for a manufacturing firm is entirely different from a service firm. Then, there are other factors that need to be looked into as well; the hours expected to work, the stress and risk involved in the job, the general benefit package in the organization and what the trend is in that industry. The “trend in that industry” is important simply because you want to motivate and nurture your employee to grow and be successful, but also make sure you retain them. What motivates an employee to stay back with an employer is another blog topic for another day.

One of the main questions that HR policy makers ask themselves is What motivates the employees? While not everyone will be motivated by the same thing, focusing on a list of key motivating programs can help. Your plan can include everything from monetary incentives, rewards and recognition, building programs that support work-life balance, to simply creating a fun, relaxed office environment. The opportunities are endless and the reward substantial. (Source: Americasjobexchange.com “The Importance of Employee Motivation”)

Here are few good reasons for companies to start focusing on employee motivation:

Performance: This is a win-win for the employee and the employer. If the employee is working hard and is being rewarded in a timely and appropriate manner for it, he / she will definitely be motivated to work harder and push the boundaries. This will in turn help the company achieve its goal and grow.

When Management Gurus talk about “performance”, they will not ignore the importance of self-motivation and peer-influence. These two aspects can work perfectly well on their own, but in most cases they are interlinked. When the whole team is motivated to work towards a common goal, the outcome is fast and there is good work-balance within the team. If there is discord or negative influence coming from even a small percentage of the team, the time spent in addressing it, working around it, or eliminating is added effort and time away from the project work. In this situation it’s eventually the team and their performance that suffers. Companies and Management spend a lot of time and money trying to avoid this scenario from taking place, because motivating a distressed team is twice as expensive and effort.

Loyalty: Loyalty according to de Graaf (2011) is a concept that “has normative, symbolic, and emotional connotations” (p. 288). I view loyalty as an agreed upon partnership between an employee and the employer where one says,”you do this for me, and in return I’ll do this for you.” Though this sounds like a negotiation process, when demands from both sides are being satisfied, there comes trust. This is the reason they say “trust is built and not bought.”

In a time and age where employees job hop from one company to another, its becoming all the more important for companies to earn their employees’ trust and loyalty.

Brand building: One thing that companies fail to see is that their employees are their biggest brand-ambassadors. They live by the company’s vision and mission statement and also carry it to the outside world. Employers cannot force their employees to talk in favor of the company, what they feel and think is entirely up to them and this is highly influenced by how they feel motivated or treated in the company. Many research work show that one of the main deciding factors that influence people to take up a job or stay with the current employer is how they see the employees being treated in the company. Glassdoor reviews are a good example to see how a company is truly doing in terms of employee loyalty.

A great culture is not easy to build — it’s why high performing cultures are such a powerful competitive advantage. Yet organizations that build great cultures are able to meet the demands of the fast-paced, customer-centric, digital world we live in. More and more organizations are beginning to realize that culture can’t be left to chance. Leaders have to treat culture building as an engineering discipline, not a magical one. Source: hbr.com “How Company Culture Shapes Employee Motivation” by Lindsay McGregor and Neel Doshi, Published November 25, 2015

Corporate Culture

Camping

According to Frances Frei and Anne Morriss at Harvard Business Review“Culture guides discretionary behavior and it picks up where the employee handbook leaves off. Culture tells us how to respond to an unprecedented service request. It tells us whether to risk telling our bosses about our new ideas, and whether to surface or hide problems. Employees make hundreds of decisions on their own every day, and culture is our guide. Culture tells us what to do when the CEO isn’t in the room, which is of course most of the time.”

There was a point in time when companies dictated the corporate culture, and then there was a phase when employees rebelled against this phenomena called “culture”… eventually becoming a culture in themselves.

When we talk about corporate culture, the following few points stand out to me.

Right Talent, Right Attitude
I know there are companies that used to hire candidates based on talent and skill-set, their attitude wasn’t important criteria. This became an issue when newly hired employees started working in teams or were required to interact with other teams. Not only are they a part of the team where they are expected to work in total harmony, interact and depend on each other to get the task done, they also represent the team while working on cross-team projects. In the recent past with a lot of changes being made to the recruiting and hiring process, companies and organizations have started leaning towards a more interactive team hiring process – they have the candidates come and meet with the team, if need be to work with the team for few hours and to see if they all fit together like a good jigsaw puzzle.

Another thing that companies are slowly catching up on is living up to their Vision statement. Jack Welch used the mantra of “speed, simplicity, and self-confidence” as the beacon for his transformation of GE’s culture in the 1990’s — in stark contrast to the company’s analytical, bureaucratic, and hierarchical culture at the time. This aspirational vision sparked dialogue at every level of the company about what people needed to do to make GE successful — and to be personally successful at GE. (Source: HBR.com)

A Company is not run by a single person
Even though the top management wants you to believe that they run the company single-handedly, it’s far from the truth. If you ever talk to them about how they handle the topic of “corporate culture” you can hear stories of struggle. The management body has changed and evolved over the years and the one thing they agree on is that they cannot force corporate culture within their team, the maximum they can do is influence it in the right direction, set the right example and hope that the others take a cue. The most debated topic in recent years has been work timing; if you take any large organization, and compare any two teams, you can see how different they are when it comes to work timings. Some managers come to work early and leave early – they hold meetings and team outings are at a preferred time. The team adjusts and starts working around this, and before long they become are a well-oiled machine, in other teams the manager comes late and works late, and this will be true for the team too. There is no right and wrong here, it’s a culture they follow and the bottom line is to get the work done.

We also hear a lot about how Managers are hiring people who are smarter and more talented than them, when this is the case, it is a given that decisions are collective and everyone needs to be open-minded, have the ability to listen and at the same time have the courage to voice their opinions.

Meet outside the office
Teem outings, team building activities and morale events are pretty common these days, so much so that employees expect it. This happens to be a great opportunity for employees to interact with each other outside of work and build a network. One of the reasons why employees change teams is because they felt they weren’t very close to their team members and it was easier for them to move out. When employees don’t feel like they belong in the team, their efforts and performance also suffers. Getting together outside the office is probably the best solution a lot of companies have found in order to improve team collaboration, communication and productivity. There is so much more to a person than what he or she brings to the office, and these opportunities are where they can talk and express their lifestyles freely.

Every company has a culture, and while the employers look for people with the right attitude to join them, candidates who are seeking out job changes or a career change are also looking for specific cultures to be a part of. This eventually shapes the industry in general, no matter how much you want to ignore it, it’s the plain fact. Google search for “corporate culture” and close to 35M articles and research papers show up.