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Looking for a New Job? Don’t Make These Networking Mistakes

May 1st, 2018

You know that networking is an important part of your job search. In fact, it’s how most new positions are found. However, if you’re making a few common mistakes, then you’re not getting the most from your efforts. What are they – and how do you avoid them? As one of the top employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, Provisional has the answers you need. Here’s a look:

Mistake #1: Not staying in touch.

You have a network of contacts, but how often do you stay in touch? If it’s not often, or not at all, then you’re not leveraging the power of networking. Networking does take time and effort, but it’s an activity that will pay off in the form of more job leads and connections to hiring managers. So it’s well worth the work you put into it. Some ways to stay in touch include sending out emails with articles of interest, inviting contacts to breakfast, lunch or happy hour, and connecting with them on social media and conversing with them there.

Mistake #2: Not networking in person.

When it comes to networking, it shouldn’t be all online. While it might be easier and more convenient, there’s still a lot of value in face-to-face contact. So don’t avoid those industry events, conferences and other opportunities to meet up with new people in person. When you make the effort, you can typically forge a stronger tie than when you simply communicate online or via email.

Mistake #3: Only networking in person.

On the flip side, you shouldn’t just be networking in person. If you are, you’re missing out on a whole world of potential contacts and interesting opportunities online. Your first place to start should be LinkedIn. Make sure you have a polished profile and begin making connections there. Also look for trade groups, industry organizations and professional groups you can join and connect with others in your field.

Mistake #4: Asking for favors and not offering help.

The last thing you should do when you make a new connection is ask for a favor. This is a big turn off. However, one way to facilitate stronger ties and a more valuable network is to offer to help. That way, when you do ask for job search help down the line, people will be more than happy to give it. So don’t look at networking only as a way to get what you want; it’s also an opportunity to help others in their careers too.

Ready to network your way into a new job?

Call the experts at Provisional. As one of the top employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, we can offer you access to a variety of rewarding job opportunities in accounting, healthcare, legal, technical, and office fields. We’ll work to get to know your background, skills and experience, all so we can connect you with the best-fit job. Contact Provisional today to learn more.

5 Steps to Take BEFORE You Start a New Job Search

June 27th, 2017

You’ve made the decision to launch a new job search. Now you’re ready to move full speed ahead. Wait just a minute! As one of the top employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, Provisional knows before you start sending out resumes and following up with hiring managers, there are a few steps you need to take that will improve your odds of finding a job. Here’s a look at 5 of them:

#1: Know what you’re looking for.

If you don’t like your current position, it’s tempting to look for an easy out in the form of any job opportunity. However, you don’t want to make the same mistake twice and land in another position you’re not happy in.

That’s why, before starting any job search, it’s important to take stock and think about what you really want in your next job. In other words, what type of role are you looking for and what type of environment do you want to work in?

#2: Take the time to polish your resume.

Most candidates dread working on their resumes. And it’s certainly not the most exciting part of a job search. However, if you take the time to update and polish it, then you’ll benefit in the long run with more interview offers.

So don’t wait until you find a position that interests you to pull out your resume and start working on it. If you do, you’ll feel pressured to complete it quickly. Instead, before you launch your search, get your resume into great shape and then customize it for each position you’re applying to.

#3: Review your online presence.

While you’re updating your resume, it’s also a good time to review your online presence, specifically your LinkedIn profile. You want to ensure that your profile and resume both complement each other and that’s there no contradictory information on them. It’s also important to Google yourself and make sure that what comes up in the results doesn’t negatively impact your job search.

#4: Start networking.

In 2017, the best way to find a new job is still through your professional network. That’s why, if you’re gearing up for a job search, then it’s also a good time to start ramping up your networking efforts. Research and plan to attend industry conferences or networking events. Also, if there are a few companies you’re interested in working for, start following and interacting with them on social media. You could make a valuable connection or find out about a great new job opening.

#5: Strengthen your skills.

If there’s a certain skill that’s important in your field – and you could use some help sharpening it – then now’s the time to sign up for a class or certification course. Even if you have to postpone your search for a few weeks or months while you gain the skills you need, it will feel good moving forward toward your goal. Plus, you’ll be a stronger, more marketable job candidate as a result.

Would you like professional help with your job search – so you can find a better job, faster?

Call in the experts at Provisional. As one of the top employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, we can offer you access to a variety of rewarding job opportunities in accounting, healthcare, legal, technical, and office fields. Contact Provisional today to learn more.

Career Habits That Can Help You Get Ahead

November 8th, 2016

You like your job and you’re happy with your employer. But lately, it feels like something is missing. If you’ve been in the same role for a long time, then it’s time for a change. But how can you make your mark and get ahead? Here are several habits to help you put into practice:

Start thinking about what’s next.

As one of the leading employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, Provisional knows it’s easy to stay in your comfort zone. But if you want to advance in your career, then it’s time to start thinking about next steps – and the skills you need to get there. Once you know the expertise you need, make a plan for obtaining it. For instance, do you need to go back to school, enroll in a certificate course, or attend an industry conference? Create a plan for how you’re going to educate yourself, including long- and short-term goals, and a timeline for getting there.

Dress for the job you want.

You might have an entry level job, or a junior position. However, that doesn’t mean you should show up to work looking like a college kid. Ever hear the phrase: ‘Image is everything’? So if you’re putting forth a sloppy or too casual image, then it’s going to impact how others perceive you.

Raise your visibility with company higher ups.

Just because someone is in an executive leadership role doesn’t mean they’re off limits to you. And if you want to get ahead and get promoted, then it’s important that company stakeholders know who you are. So if you see your boss’s boss sitting alone in the lunchroom, ask to join them and strike up a conversation.

Turn challenges into opportunities.

It’s easy to get off course if you’re facing roadblocks in your career. But rather than having the attitude that you can’t do anything about it, take a proactive approach. Successful people don’t sit idly by; they take action, look for a solution and take advantage of new opportunities that come their way.

Ask for what you want.

Your boss isn’t a mind reader. So if you think you deserve a promotion, ask for it. If you know you’re not there yet, then make your intentions clear to your boss and ask what you need to do to prepare yourself for advancement.

Interested in promoting yourself to a new job in a different company? Call Provisional. As one of the leading employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, we’ll work with you to get to know your skills, background, and personality. We’ll then match you with rewarding jobs that are a great fit for you. Search our Coeur d’Alene jobs now or contact us today.

5 Career Mistakes You’ll Regret in the Future

October 11th, 2016

Your career is a journey. As one of the top employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, Provisional knows that even if you’re content in your current position, you should actively be taking steps to build upon your successes, navigate toward new opportunities, and achieve your career goals.

If you don’t, then you could wind up stagnating in your position and making career decisions without much forethought or planning. To make sure you don’t have any career regrets in the future, be sure to avoid these mistakes:

#1: Thinking networking is only for job candidates.

You’re not searching for a new job. So why do you need to network? Because you can meet new contacts that could have a huge impact on your career down the line. Even if you’re not actively seeking a new job, you can learn about your dream opportunity or employer through networking. You can also gain new knowledge, help out your colleagues, and raise your visibility in the field.

#2: You never challenge yourself.

You’re busy and you have a lot of work on your plate. But if you never challenge or stretch yourself, you’re not going to get much further in your career. So take on an extra project that can teach you something new. Or volunteer to run a committee to help plan your company’s next big event. These are great opportunities to meet and work alongside new people, gain different skills, and raise your visibility among company decision makers.

#3: You make career decisions solely based on money.

You’ve been offered a promotion with a big jump in salary. While it may be a tempting offer, be sure to evaluate how it’s going to impact your overall quality of life. If you’re suddenly going to be working 60 hours a week and traveling two weeks a month, the extra salary may not be worth it. So don’t make all your career decisions based only on money. It’s important to focus on work life balance and where your passion lies.

#4: You look immature on social media.

You might think your Facebook page is private. But when your best friend tags you in a picture where you’re both drunk and acting foolishly – and all their contacts can see it, as well – it’s suddenly not so private. Don’t let rude, immature or questionable behavior posted to social media impact your professional life.

#5: You don’t take any risks.

Risks are scary. What if the direction you take doesn’t work out? That’s certainly a question worth asking. However, if you never take a calculated risk – and let the status quo rule your career – you won’t get very far. Some potential opportunities aren’t worth the risk, but the right risk at the right time can yield big results.

Are you ready to take a risk and make a career move? Call Provisional. As one of the top employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, we can offer you access to a variety of rewarding job opportunities in accounting, healthcare, legal, technical, and office fields. Contact Provisional today to learn more.

How to Get a New Job in 2016 When You Were Fired From Your Last One

January 12th, 2016

As one of the leading employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, Provisional knows when you’re fired from a job, finding your next one is going to be a challenge. The good news is that it can be done. Simply follow the four tips below to help you get started:

Tip #1: Be honest and upfront.

When you’re filling out a job application, you might be tempted to skip listing the job you were fired from; or fudge dates so it looks like you worked in a previous job longer. But it’s incredibly easy for a hiring manager to make a quick phone call to get the real scoop on your background. So there’s no point in lying. If you get caught, you will be booted out of the hiring process and likely black listed at the company.

Tip #2: Ignore short-term jobs.

That being said, if you had a job for a couple weeks and were fired, then you can avoid listing it on your resume. Also, don’t worry about bringing it up during the job interview unless specifically asked about it. Instead, focus on your track record of success and accomplishments in other positions. However, if you were on the job for a few months or longer, then you should list it. Having a long gap in employment will be questionable to an employer.

Tip #3: Avoid excuses.

If you’re in an interview and the hiring manager asks you about being fired, don’t start blaming other people. Even if you were really fired unfairly, the hiring manager doesn’t know the situation and blaming others will simply make you look bad. So instead, be direct, admit you were fired, and tell them what you learned from the experience. In other words, spin a negative into a positive.

Tip #4: Persuade the hiring manager.

Hiring managers are rightly concerned about hiring those who have been fired. That’s why it’s up to you to convince them that you won’t make the same mistake twice. Show that you’re accountable and know where you went wrong. Also explain the lengths you’ve gone to to correct the mistake, whether it’s taking a training course or enrolling in a seminar.

Finding your next job after you’ve been fired can be a challenge. But it is possible. Follow the tips above and you could be well on your way to a new position in 2016.

If you’d like help with your search, call the experts at Provisional. As one of the leading employment agencies in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, we’ll work with you to get to know your skills, background, and personality. We’ll then match you with rewarding jobs that are a great fit for you. Search our Coeur d’Alene jobs now or contact us today.

How to Make Your Performance Review Pay Off

December 20th, 2011

As one of Coeur d’Alene’s top employment agencies, we know that there are some people in this world that actually look forward to performance reviews. These are the same people who enjoy going to the dentist and proofreading Chinese food menus.

However, if you’re like most people, you fall into the former category, not the latter – and prepping for a performance review can be stressful.

But rather than dreading your review, look at it an opportunity to improve performance and strengthen your position within the company. Here’s how:

Keep an open mind.

Even if you’ve done a great job, you’re not perfect. Therefore, your boss will probably have some constructive feedback to offer you. If he or she does, take it with an open mind. Don’t get defensive and dismissive. Instead, view it as an opportunity to shore up your weaknesses and build on your successes in the future.

Prove your worth.

Before your performance review, put together a summary of accomplishments and goals you’ve met throughout the year. Give specific, concrete examples of how you’ve contributed in a positive way to your company. Toot your own horn a little bit. Your boss may not know about every piece of positive client feedback you’ve gotten, or an instance when you put out a fire with some quick thinking, so now’s the time to show how you’ve gone above and beyond.

Demonstrate growth.

If in your last performance review, your boss pointed out a weak spot, then be prepared to show how you’ve overcome it throughout the course of the year.

Be proactive.

If you know areas where you need to improve, then develop a plan for how to overcome those issues and meet expectations before you go into the meeting. Your boss will be impressed with your proactive nature and likely relieved that you’re already aware of your weaknesses.

Avoid nasty surprises.

As one of Coeur d’Alene’s top employment agencies, we know there’s nothing worse than going into a performance review thinking it will be a positive experience, and then walking away stunned due to all the negative feedback your boss gave you.

To avoid this kind of situation, seek input from your boss throughout the year. Check in with him or her periodically; offer a status report on your progress and ask for thoughts or feedback. Use that as a guide to address – and hopefully overcome – any shortcomings before your performance review.

5 Action Steps to Take After the Interview

July 13th, 2010

After your job interview, all you have to do is sit back and wait for the telephone to ring, right? If that’s what you think, then you’re sadly mistaken. The period after a job interview is critical – and can truly set you apart from the other Coeur d’Alene job candidates, if you handle it right.

Here are some action steps you should take after the interview:

Action Step #1: Make notes.

Write down the details of how the interview went. Also, write down some of the positive areas you can reinforce in your thank you note.

Action Step #2: Send a thank you note.

Many times, candidates don’t think they need to send a note if the interview went well. But that’s simply not true. The post interview thank you note provides you with an opportunity to thank the hiring manager (a little apple polishing never hurt!) and to reiterate why you’d be a good fit for the position. If you don’t send a thank you note, you’ll miss out on this additional opportunity to sell yourself.

With that said, when writing a thank you note, make sure it’s short a sweet. Hiring managers are busy people and a long and windy note will annoy them.

Action Step #3: Alert your references.

Contact any references you gave to the hiring manager. Give your references some information about the particular job and the company. You may even want to ask your references to contact you once the hiring manager gets in touch with them to find out how the conversation went. If a reference is contacted, make sure you send along a thank you note letting them know how much you appreciate their time and support.

Action Step #4: Follow up, but don’t harass.

If the hiring manager doesn’t get back to you within the specified time period, it’s perfectly acceptable to contact them in order to inquire about the status of your application. Simply thank them again for the opportunity to interview and then ask when a decision will likely be made. Be professional, though. Don’t flood the hiring manager with voice mails and emails.

Action Step #5: Continue your job search.

Even if you think you’re a shoo in for the position, keep looking. You never know when a better job opportunity could come along. Plus, you don’t want to put all your eggs in one basket until you’ve actually been extended the offer.

If you’d like more interview tips, or need help finding a job, please contact Provisional. As a leading employment agency serving Coeur d’Alene, Idaho and the Northwest, we can offer you access to a variety of rewarding job opportunities in accounting, healthcare, legal, technical, and office fields.

Contact Provisional today to learn more.

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