career-tools

Following Up

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • How do I follow up professionally?
  • How do I keep track of everything I need to do?
  • How do I find time to make sure I'm getting everything done?

This cast helps you be more efficient in following up.

We've talked about following up in numerous Career Tools casts. It's one of the marks of a true professional. People who follow up well, who don't let things fall through the cracks and who are in control of their workload stand out from the crowd. So how do you become one of those people?


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My Boss Finds Fault With Me - Part 2

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • Do I have to take my boss's criticism seriously?
  • Do I have to apologise to my boss?
  • How can I make my boss stop criticising me?

This cast concludes our conversation on helping you deal with the situation when your boss finds faults with your work.


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My Boss Finds Fault With Me - Part 1

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • Do I have to take my boss's criticism seriously?
  • Do I have to apologise to my boss?
  • How can I make my boss stop criticising me?

This cast helps you deal with the situation when your boss finds faults with your work.

This is another cast which follows the theme of 'what we wish we knew when we were 20'. Apart from the robots on the line at car factories, no-one's work is perfect. Part of the reason we have managers is because they have more experience and can guide us to making our work better. For some of us, the criticism isn't delivered constructively and that is hard to deal with. With age and experience, we've learned the hard way how to deal with having our work critiqued. In this cast, we're going to give you a head start, so you don't have to learn the way we did.

We're not covering major deliverable failure here. In this cast, we're just talking about faults with your every day work. If you've missed a major project deadline, or received a below average performance review, this cast isn't for you. If your boss really does criticize undeservedly, then you need our Bad Boss cast. But don't leap to conclusions. Your boss might not be as bad as all that.


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Interviewing - What To Do While You Wait

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • What do I do when waiting in the building for an interview?
  • Can I make phone calls while waiting for an interview?
  • Should I talk to people whilst waiting for an interview?

This cast gives our guidance on what you do while you wait in reception for an interviewer.

We've given this guidance on what to do when you sit in reception waiting for an interviewer, but it applies equally to any meeting where you're in an unfamiliar building and have to wait to be collected.

Like lots of our guidance around interview etiquette it's a mixture of the practical things to do and what not to do. Many of the things interviewees do are things they THINK give a good impression. Unfortunately, in many cases they're wrong.


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Meeting A Senior Executive

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • How do I prepare to meet someone senior?
  • What kind of things do I need to be prepared to talk about?
  • What do I do if it goes wrong?

This cast helps you deal with meeting a member of the business who is two or more levels above you in the organization hierarchy.

One of the recommendations we make in Manager Tools is that every manager who has managers below them needs to periodically have a 'skip meeting'. That means she meets with not her directs, but their directs. That's all very well and beneficial for the manager, but it can be intimidating directs' directs. If you find yourself in that position, what can you do to give a good impression and not embarrass yourself?


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Develop Your Career Using Your Network

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • How can I use my network to increase my skills?
  • What kind of skills can I get from my network?
  • How do I ask my network to help me?

This cast gives our guidance on developing your career using your network.

It seems like in every cast we record, we talk about the importance of building your network. We talk about how your network can help you with problems, get you a mentor and help you find a new job. We've told you how to build your network by being indiscriminate and adding everyone, and then, importantly, KEEPING IN TOUCH with them.

But how can you develop your career on a day-to-day basis by using your network? This cast tells you how.


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Interview Etiquette

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • What is correct behavior during an interview?
  • Should I take a drink if offered?
  • What should I have prepared to talk about?

This cast gives our guidance on how to conduct yourself during an interview.

We've said it before, and we'll probably say it again, interviews are nerve-wracking. For everyone. In some ways it's like meeting your girlfriend's parents for the first time. There's that feeling of desperately wanting to impress and of being on your best behavior. We call the right behavior in that circumstance "etiquette" or "manners". Fortunately, etiquette rescues us during interviews too.

Debrett's Guide to British Behavior says of manners: Manners are valuable in this world for the simple reason that well-mannered people know how to set others around at their ease, know how to make the world feel a more civilized, friendly and calm place, and like to put others' comfort ahead of their own. Would you be more or less likely to employ someone who made you feel that way? Of course, you would be more likely, we all want to be around people like that. So, what to do?


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What To Take To An Interview

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • Do I take a briefcase or bag to an interview?
  • Do I take copies of my resume to an interview?
  • What do I need to have with me at an interview?

This cast gives our guidance on what to take to an interview.

In our experience interviewing, we've seen everything. People who appear to have been away from home several weeks judging by the size of the bag they bring. People who 'travel light' and have to borrow a pen and a piece of paper when we give them details of the next step. People who want to show us their artist's portfolio. People who pull a large sheet of paper out of their bag and start drawing the intricacies of their invention.

There's a wide range behavior in interviews. What though, are the right things to take to an interview?

Here's an example of a portfolio.


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Create A Development Plan For Yourself

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • How do I know what I need to do?
  • How do I find out what I need to do?
  • How do I keep momentum?

This cast helps you create a development plan for yourself.

One of the most common themes in the questions we get is 'I want to move from where I am, to where I want to be, how do I do it?' Whether the person is talking about promotion, a sideways move or a career change the steps are essentially the same. Companies used to do this for us. In some companies there are still structured career paths and structured moves, especially at the lowest levels and in senior management. Often though, the company is small and doesn't have a method for developing staff. Or you're stuck in a wasteland, somewhere between the plant floor and an office of your own.

So, assuming that your company isn't going to do it for you (and why would you rely on someone or something else to control your career, even if they were willing) what do you do?


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Getting A Bad Review

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • What do I do when I get a bad review?
  • Should I respond immediately?
  • How should I communicate with my boss after my review?

This cast gives our guidance on dealing with a bad review.

We hope this never happens to you. But like being fired, getting a bad review is not fatal. It is something you can get over, if you have a plan. And, like being fired, when you look back on it, it can turn into the best thing that ever happened. That's not to say we want you to aim for a bad review - but we want to give you guidance on what you do when you get one.

If you have never had a bad review and don't intend to, keep listening. There's another way to use this guidance at the end of the cast.


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