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Four Important Questions to Ask Your Interviewer; Do You Really Want to Work for This Person?
Many job seekers miss a golden opportunity when they are asked towards the end of an interview if they have any questions. If they feel the interviewer adequately explained the position, they make the mistake of answering "No" to this question. But this is the perfect time to find out if you really want to work for this person! After all, even a wonderful job can turn into a miserable experience if you don't get along with the person you work for.
Here's how to find out if the boss will be as great as the job -- ask these questions during the interview:
1. "What's your ideal employee like?" Asking this question will give you an idea of what this boss would expect from you. Listen carefully to the answer and deduce what it will mean for you. For example, if her ideal employee works independently, you'll know this boss is not a micromanager. If her ideal employee follows procedures without question, you'll know it may be an uphill battle to implement changes or new ideas. If her ideal employee works long hours, don't expect to leave on time every night.
2. "What are the other people in the office like?" Does this boss really know the people who work for her? Does she list their accomplishments with pride or say something vague and unimpressive? Note her tone of voice when she talks about her team. Is she enthusiastic or disappointed?
3. "How does an employee succeed on your team?" Hopefully she'll give you something more enlightening than "Do the job right." You want to learn what standards are expected. For example, if it's a sales position, will you be expected to exceed a specific dollar value in sales or obtain a percentage of satisfied customers? So if her answer is too generic, you may have to follow up with more questions to get specifics. Ask about the typical career path for an employee who successfully meets goals.
4. "How do you go about solving problems?" How she answers this question can give you insight into her management style. Does she prefer to take charge when things go wrong, or encourage her team to develop solutions?
In addition to the answers themselves, note this person's overall attitude about answering these questions. If she was open to them and answered thoughtfully, she's probably someone who enjoys promoting good working relationships. If you're offered the job, you shouldn't have any hesitations about working for this person. But if she appeared to resent the questions and didn't answer them to your satisfaction, she's not someone you'd
It's better to know this sooner rather than later!
Bonnie Lowe is author of the popular Job Interview Success System and free information-packed ezine, "Career-Life Times." Find those and other powerful career-building resources and tips at her website: http://www.best-interview-strategies.com.
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Fascinating Ways to Make a Living Doing What You Love May Be Closer Than You Think...
You don't have to look very far to find fascinating ways to make a living. Opportunities are literally everywhere? if you're looking, that is. It seems I can't turn on the television or radio or open a magazine or newspaper without seeing at least one good business idea. Maybe that's why, as we were winding down a consulting session the other day, one of my clients said to me, "Boy, you sure have a lot of information in your head." I appreciated the compliment, but Julie was only half right. When you've been in the business of helping people change course for as long as I have, it's only natural I'd know a lot about creative income streams. But most of them aren't in my head ? they're in my Opportunity File.What's an Opportunity File? Basically anytime I happen upon an interesting story about someone who is making money doing what they love, I add it to a big file called Opportunities. If you don't yet have an Opportunity File, I encourage you to set one up. It's positively addicting!I thought it might be fun to just pull a couple of examples from the top of my Opportunity file and share them with you. Since they're on top, that means I've come across them in just the last week or so. Collecting is all the rage these days. As I looked more closely at my top of the pile examples, I realized that in one way or another, they all have something to do with collecting. Read on and you'll see what I mean.First there's antique Christmas decorations collector, Gerald Nixon (aka Mr. Pink? I'll explain in a moment). Gerald had so many antique Christmas decorations in his personal collection that he finally had to open a shop just so he could move about his apartment. Today he has over 10,000 ornaments as well as light reflectors, aluminum trees, rotating color wheels, rotating musical tree stands, vintage holiday cards, and wrapping paper. Okay, why is he called Mr. Pink? Well, it seems the guy owns a very fuzzy pink Santa suit that he happily dons every weekend in December. You can imagine how many tourists ask to have their picture taken with him! You can visit Gerald at his shop in Manhattan at 223 16th Street or online at MrPinkInc.com. If you hurry, you may even catch him in his furry pink suit!And speaking of winter? after his grandfather died and left him his old wooden skis, Mark Miller began collecting vintage skis. Soon neighbors in his small hometown in New Hampshire started dropping off their old skis. Then Mark began buying skis at auctions. Before long, he had over 100 pairs!In 1994, he decided to turn his hobby into a business and moved himself and his collection to Park City, Utah, where he became a ski instructor. Today Mark has the largest collection of antique winter sports equipment in the world. Two warehouses hold his collection of 3,000 pairs of skis, 2,000 pairs of snowshoes, 500 vintage sleds, and 400 pairs of wooden skates.Increasingly, Mark's collection comes from Europe where he managed to track down 500 pairs of American snow shoes used by the Army's 10th Mountain Division in World War II. The shoes were just sitting in an old barn in Turkey. Mark does all the refinishing work himself before selling his vintage finds through his web site at AntiqueSkis.com and through home décor shops in four western states. The next opportunity I found in an article in FSB magazine about hot franchises. I'm not usually very interested in franchises. I've got nothing against them mind you? it's just hard for me to picture someone who wakes up in the morning excited about opening their own Subway or Jiffy Lube shop. On the other hand, franchises can be the ideal solution for someone who basically wants to run his or her own business but doesn't want to build something from scratch.Anyway, it was my keen interest in recycling that peaked my curiosity about Canadian Brian Scudamore's franchise entirely geared around turning trash into cash. Brian got into the business of clearing out unwanted things from people's basements, garages, attics and the like when he was 19 and still in college. He bought an old truck for $700, and in an attempt to make his business sound bigger than it was, he named it Rubbish Boys. (Even though Brian was the only rubbish boy he thought big). His business was so successful, he ended up dropping out of school to haul junk full time.The junk hauling business itself is nothing new. But over time Brian got the bright idea of modernizing the business with uniformed drivers driving fancy trucks who show up when they say they will. So he decide to start a company called Got-Junk (think UPS but with junk pick up). Today this 33-year-old's Vancouver-based company is one of the fastest growing franchises in North America with 74 territories ? most in the U.S. Is there really that much money in junk? This year Got-Junk expects to post revenues system-wide of $12.6 million. To learn more, go to 1800GotJunk.com. A lot of people skip over articles or entire publications if they don't see an immediate application to their life. Not me. The more unrelated to my life, the more intrigued I am. Case in point was a supplement in my local paper that was dedicated to equestrians. I like horses and all, but am not even remotely connected to the horse world.While I scanned the articles, what I was really drawn to were the advertisements. Why? Ads reveal all kinds of interesting ways people with a particular interest have found a way to earn a living. Among the ads for such obvious businesses as tack shops and veterinarians was an ad for "quality equine laundry." Who knew?I quickly discovered that the company will "clean, refurbish, and return each blanket spotless, repaired, and wrapped with tissue in a zippered plastic case." They also promise to make Velcro stick again and to air-dry the blankets on a special rack to avoid shrinkage. This enterprising company will arrange for pick up anywhere in New England. This last one is not so much about collecting things as it is about collecting and using experience. A headline in my local paper featured a guy who recently bought a local trophy and engraving shop. I don't have a big need for trophies, but I know when it comes to entrepreneurs, there's always more to a story than the headline. I was right. It seems the new shop keeper, 51-year-old Russell Wilkinson, has had a pretty varied background. According to the article, Russell has worked in construction, been an electrician, owned his own shoe repair shop, been a security chief at a local park, delivered packages for UPS, owned a local restaurant, and trained to be a scuba diving instructor in Key West. People often ask Russell why he doesn't just get a regular job. His reply? "If I'd done that, it would have been the biggest waste of the most expensive education a person can have." Russell's story serves as a good reminder that despite all the pressure to find that one thing you're good at and then stick to it for the rest of your life, having a varied occupational life can make life a whole lot more interesting.It also reminds us that no experience is wasted. So many people went to school for things that have nothing to do with the work they do today? myself included. I never view past training, jobs, or even relationships as wasted time. All of our past experience adds up to who we are today.Do you want to work at something you truly love? Opportunities are all around you. Get a note pad and a file folder and start your own Opportunities File. Let it be a source of inspiration and ideas.
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Tent caterpillars create a cocoon for an entire colony. Within one colony there are two types of caterpillar. One type, pioneers, weave long threads forming the skeleton of the tent. The others, the workers, weave cross threads filling in the structure. If there are too many pioneers, the tent is too big and collapses. If there are not enough pioneers, the tent is too dense and the colony suffocates. Viva la difference.
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