Tagged: performance review

Be Your Own Career Sherpa: No One Else Will!

In today’s workplace, its uncommon for companies to be concerned about keeping employees’ skills current or in preparing them to take on new responsibilities.  Frequently, when a new competence is needed, Jane Doe will be out and John Shmoe will be in.


Here are 5  ways to protect and advance your career.

1. Understand what is expected of the person in your role.  Be certain that you know what you will be evaluated on and the benchmarks of success.  A good time to do this is at your next performance review.  If your next review won’t take place for a while, type and print what you think the expectations are and have a sit-down with your supervisor to go over them.  Ask for frequent feedback on what is going well and where you can improve.  This is how you make sure you are on the right track now.

2. To advance you have to grow.  Grow in the knowledge you need for what you are doing.  Fill in the gaps, and everyone has them.  Find out how your work affects your department, the bottom line, and the company goals.  The more you know, the better you will be able to choose a direction, see the holes in your resume and prepare for the next step in this company or prep for your next move.

3. Be the person who sees where your product (that could be dental hygiene or AI and everything in between) is going.  Find new uses and discover which uses are becoming obsolete.  READ widely and go deep on a couple of topics!

4. Remember your high school Brag Sheet?  Keep one at work.  Keep track of in-servicing, outside training, new tasks you’ve taken on, certifications and new skills you’ve developed.  Regularly rate your performance on key tasks and others you’ve identified as helpful in fulfilling your role.

5. Ramp up your visibility with decision makers.  Attend events sponsored by your company, take on new responsibilities, cross over to help other departments.  Offer help. Think of this as networking within the company.

Here’s what Carter Cast from Harvard Business Review says: It’s not always possible to get noticed by senior leaders through your direct work, so you might try volunteering for initiatives, such as charity work, company events, or on-campus recruiting. This is an easy but often overlooked way to rub elbows with senior people who will see you in action and ideally take notice of your contributions.

To read the entire HBR article go here: https://hbr.org/2018/01/6-ways-to-take-control-of-your-career-development-if-your-company-doesnt-care-about-it

Invest in yourself!  Let me help you draw up a plan to secure your current position and prepare for your next one.  Don’t wait for your future to come looking for you. stephanie@accessguidance.com or 610-212-6679.

Take The Sting Out Of Constructive Criticism

When the boss says, We should talk”  you can feel the hair on your arms stand at attention because you know that you are about to be chastized.  The anticipation can be agonizing.


In  that moment of truth, try these 3 things to reduce the sting.

1.  Adopt your boss’s point of view.  You are all on a team with the goal of making the company more efficient and profitable.  Identify the experience as a coaching session from which you can lean how to do those things better.

2. Ask questions to clarify the issue.  Pause to think before you react.  Its human to become defensive but a quick reaction probably won’t be an advantage.  Ask how you can improve then set goals.

3.  Identify the underlying problem.  If you aren’t meeting deadlines, perhaps it is because you are using a different system of priorities or failing to prioritize at all.  Everyone has time management difficulties from time to time.  Do co-workers frequently drop new assignments on your desk or request your help in a way that makes completing your own tasks difficult?

When you have found the factors underlying problem, define a solution and talk to your boss so she knows that you have heard and are working to resolve the difficulty.

Would it help to talk about your difficulties at work?  An objective outsider can help you identify work-around solutions to underlying problems.   Lets get together! stephanie@accssguidance.com or 6110-212-6679



Do This To Increase Your Hireabilty, Insure Your Promotion

Clients who come to me for help in finding a new job frequently have no clue as to what they do all day or have done over the last year. Unbelievable, right?

I’m copying for you part of an article by Meghan Rabbitt of LearnVest titled                           7 Ways You Can make Yourself More Hireable This Week.

Assess Your Worth at Work

Get a handle on exactly what and how much you do in your current job so you’re ready to

Keep A STAR List
Keep A STAR List

articulate examples of your leadership skills, project management, and other desirable attributes that future employers will appreciate.

Plus, says Jacinto, having these talking points at the ready can also help you in your current role—say, at your next performance review.

So make it a point today to write down everything you do at your job and break it down into different tiers of expertise, says Jones. For example, managing a $250,000 budget is in a different tier than hiring and managing freelancers.

Next, articulate the successes you’ve had that helped the company. Did you produce more than expected given your budget? Do you have a track record of hiring and training interns who go on to get full-time jobs at the company?

And if you are just starting out in your career, Alfred Poor, author of 7 Success Secrets That Every College Student Needs to Know!, suggests writing down what he calls your STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) stories.

Ask yourself these key questions: What was your work situation? What was the task that you were assigned (or identified on your own) to solve? What action did you take? And what was the result, preferably something measurable?

“This is a great way to remind yourself of situations that prove you can apply your skills and knowledge to produce a positive contribution,” Poor says. “And if you don’t have many to reference at work just yet, it’s OK to pull from internships.”

Me again.   Whew! That’s powerful stuff. When you begin making notes you’ll find that you also look for opportunities to create value that you can add to your STAR list.  Use your STAR List when you

Ask for a raise
Have a performance review
See an lateral move within the company that will be advantageous
Want to work part of your hours from home
Revise your social media profile (LinkedIn)
Update your resume
Look for a job

Most important, you can’t sell yourself unless you know what you bring to the table. Even if your only job has been working at Dairy Queen in the summer or an internship, this is the model that will take you to the next level.

Three Steps to Take Toward Recognition and Reward

Gray, cold, drizzly days make me glum.  Sometimes I wonder why I bother sitting at this desk doing the same things day in and day out.  If that describes you, come over into my boat and we’ll talk.

I’m going to list three things you can do to shake up that funk and get  back on the road to career esteem and productivity.

One   Make a list of  your achievements and things you’ve done in the last year that have made a difference in your performance.  Inservice, taking a class, learning another part of the work your company does, joining an other team, helping someone complete a task are a few things to look at.

The list you make will show you how you’ve increased your value to your employer and should create a warm feeling about your performance.

Two   Ask for feedback.  Not all organizations offer annual reviews or have supervisors who are adept at praising or encouraging others.  Set a time to sit down with the person to whom you report, your team leader, or owner of the company.  Ask them to tell you what they find most valuable about your performance.  Ask how you can improve.  Ask to expand your skills and experience as you take on new responsibility.

When we learn something new we feel good about ourselves.  If no support for job growth is forthcoming within the company, take a class at the community college in something that interests you.

Three   Read publications and professional journals related to your  industry to pique your interest and curiosity.  You may find new ways to use your experience or perhaps find a trend that your boss hasn’t yet developed.

Each strategy will bring you to the attention of decision makers who should reward your eagerness, commitment and initiative.   Reinvigorating and rejuvenating your enthusiasm fuels your efforts as you move ahead.  Your boss is sure to take notice.