Thursday, November 11, 2010

Answering more questions. RE: career objectives, temping experience, career freedom & work satisfaction.

Forewords: We're back in the career building, job hunting, resume writing, job interview, and Singapore job updates game. We hope you know what we mean.

"Victory is sweetest when you've known defeat"
, Malcom Forbes once said. How true. Thanks for all the compliments. We'll endeavor to produce more, rest assured. In the first place, it's what we're supposed to do. And we're glad we've gotten the magic back.

We had always felt pride in being in complete control of our writing abilities. Turns out, we haven't lost that touch. And with a renewed self trust, we're bidding the demons goodbye.

Seriously though, we've had enough of the complaints ourselves. Having been awakened by a harmless but provoking email from a professor on Linkedin, as we've already shared yesterday, you can expect us to be more intellectual than ever before.

It’s settled. You guys gave us an ultimatum, we woke up, our confidence is back, and the bar for quality is high again. One big happy circle of...stuff. We wouldn't go as far as to guarantee this everyday, but you probably get the drift. To those who can't tolerate rants and similar pointless stuff: it's now risk less to click that Follow button.

What's up with the gratuitous mood? Considering we thought writing, publishing and all the complications that arose from those things, were ridiculously fragile (that once the magic is lost, it cannot be redeemed), and that a writing job wasn't something that anyone could prosper in (blame our college professors for instilling into our minds that belief), we'd been convinced that writer's block was not something we'd get over or push aside and ignore that easily, if at all.

Turns out, we can. And that's because in the first place, writer's block doesn't exist. It was all in the head. Just a little push is what we need. Childish but true.

And that's why we've decided to devote this day on victories. Good timing as today is also our first year anniversary as keepers of this career blog. But of course, this will not just be about our happiness. We're ending the drama right here to pass the limelight to Career Advice's articles on career success and how to achieve it. For your victory!

Because everybody has different circumstances, one strategy isn't enough. We can't expect one strategy to work for all our followers. Good thing Career Advice has just added new entries into its selection of articles about 'reaching for the stars' and there's a lot from career coaches, Katherine Hansen and Cathy Goodwin.

Many questions are still unanswered in our mailbox and really, we feel inclined to get them over with before this week ends. Which leaves us with a deadline of today because tomorrow's Friday, the day for Singapore Jobs and Jobs in Singapore.

That should do all the explaining. Now, let's get back to the task at hand, shall we?

Katherine Hansen is another familiar name in Career Advice's roster of experts. Her articles are also great references for answering FAQs, especially ones about job hunting. Unlike the Brian Tracy trademarks though, hers are on the specific side. But well, both are great career writers all the same.

One example of FAQ that pop up on our screens often is about career objectives in resumes. Will it make a big difference if you put one? What's the advantage? Katherine's say on this is that she's not totally against the practise, but she thinks that an objective isn't necessary. If the cover letter is well written, it'll do the job of attracting the attention of recruitment agencies. No need for a contingency effort.

If you're comfortable with that arrangement (that is, you're sure you can commit to the objective), do it. If not, Katherine would like you to focus instead on polishing your cover letter. "Those still uncomfortable with committing themselves to an objective on their resume can use their cover letters to help them tailor their resumes to the specific jobs they're applying for."

You'd like to enlist the help of both in your job applications? Katherine has these three reminders on what an effective objective is:

  • Objectives should reflect the employer's perspective, not the job seeker's.
  • Objectives should be as concise as possible.
  • Objectives may help sharpen the focus of your resume.

She's also put up a short reminder on how you can make your cover letter spotless in her Should you Use a Career Objective on your Resume. Digesting all her guidelines is worth the time. You can read the article at

More and more people are seeing the appeal of temping jobs for reasons ranging from, the stiff competition in today's job market to flexible working hours. Either way, temping is now seen as a career option, promoted from just being secondary by many factors. But as open as job seekers are to temp work now, employers are still stuck in the traditional notion of permanence equals stability, putting on a large handicap for working professionals who've built up their resumes with temping experience in their search for a permanent job. We're not surprised to get questions on how to build a temping resume in our mailbox every so often, really.

How do you present temping experience correctly in a resume? "Deft portrayal of temp work on your resume and in interviews is the way to avoid getting caught in the temp cycle", says Katherine. Tips for you to consider:

  • Acknowledge the role of the temp or staffing agency, but list as your main employers the Companies for whom you actually did the work.
  • Avoid the word "temporary" altogether.
  • If you have enough experience, you no longer need to list your temp positions.
  • List down accomplishments with positive results and new skills learned.
  • Make it a point to list nationally recognised firms.

But all these efforts will be wasted if you don't give them enough back up in the corresponding interview. Katherine wants you to be upbeat. "Make your broad and diverse background a selling point." Examples are included in the complete article. Be sure to read for better execution.

Another familiar name, Cathy Goodwin's articles are more for helping career assist them with their problems. Those with questions concerning work life balance, job satisfaction, career freedom will get a lot of scoops from Cathy's 10 Tips to Moving Towards Career Freedom. It may seem impossible to achieve idealism in your career, but heck, it's possible given motivation. Stressed out and in need of a remedy? How to achieve satisfaction in your career? Here are Cathy's tips:

  • Begin focusing on what you want instead of how much you want to escape.
  • Create an image that describes you in your job.
  • Think of developing skills, not serving time.
  • Focus on satisfactory, not superior performance.
  • What conflict are you escaping?
  • Put on your shield and armour when you enter your workplace.
  • Give yourself a gift every day.
  • Find at least one thing in your life to appreciate.
  • Tune in to your intuition before deciding what to do next.
  • Write this down somewhere.

Be sure to go to for additional scoops.

Cathy has another article on Career Advice, entitled Prepare your Performance Review before you Start the Job. How can this help you with your career problem? Sometimes, pressing the reset button is the only solution. We're taking it from that saying. Cathy's first step is for newbies to set a meeting with their bosses to clear things out. Maybe doing that could solve your problem?

The next step in her proposal is all about keeping a record of activities. Task management leads to work efficiency...maybe doing this can lessen your work stress? More things can be realised in reading the complete article here:

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