The Pros and Cons of Job Hopping by Chrissy Scivicque

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Submitted by Mackenzie Thomas
Center for Career & Life Planning Marketing Assistant

 

Out of everyone in my group of college friends, I was the only one who still had the same job two years after graduation. Everyone else had changed jobs once, twice, even three times. So, I felt somewhat smug—as if I knew something they didn’t. It wasn’t until many years later I understood the positive side of job hopping. It hit me when I suddenly discovered I had forced myself to stay in a job I hated for five years. If only I had just left at the very beginning when I realized it wasn’t for me…maybe I wouldn’t have wasted all that time being miserable…

Of course, job hopping also involves a few pretty serious downsides. In order to make the best decisions in your career, it’s helpful to understand both the positive and negative aspects of bouncing around from one job to the next, and how it can impact your long-term goals.

Self-Discovery

Clearly, no one expects you to know exactly what you want from your career the minute you graduate from college. But, as you gain experience, you should become more astutely aware of what your idea of “the right” job looks like. If you find yourself stuck, feeling like nothing will ever make you happy, it’s time to do some self-reflection. If you need help, download my FREE mini-workbook which will walk you through a process to determine what’s working (and what’s not) in your current career so you can begin pinpointing the things that may provide (or detract from) career fulfillment the future. Once you know more about yourself, you can be more discerning in the job search process.

Proactively searching for a job that matches your unique career wants and needs should help prevent job hopping, but there’s no guarantee. Sometimes, the only way to really learn what works for you and what doesn’t is to simply step in there and give it a try. I always recommend that, unless things are really unbearable, it’s a good idea to stick with a new job for at least a year. This gives you enough time to really get a feel for it and make an informed decision.

Variety

Most of us enjoy routine…up to a point. Then, it becomes monotonous. Job hopping certainly provides variety. You end up learning about many different businesses and industries; you gain a variety of skills and meet a wide range of people. This is what many job hoppers crave when they bounce around. They just want to escape the boring everyday routine. Be cautious of this! While it’s nice to experience new things, most jobs will have some degree of monotony. When you’re being paid, it won’t always be exciting and new.

Shallow Experience

If you’re a job hopper, or if you end up being one, you can always frame your scattered experience as being a good thing: you have a wide range of capabilities and broad point-of-view. However, in reality, your experience in each area is rather shallow. If you only stay somewhere for a short period of time, you’re not getting a deep understanding of what’s going on. That usually takes several years to accomplish and prospective employers may be concerned about your skill level.

Lack of Loyalty

Inevitably, once you’ve job hopped a few times in a row, employers will start seeing it as a red flag. They’ll wonder about your loyalty. They’ll worry that it’s not worth the time, money and energy needed to train you because, in a year or so, you’ll be gone. This can be a hard stigma to shake so you better have some strong justification for why you left each position and proactively address it in your cover letter. Don’t try to ignore it and hope they won’t notice.

You Don’t Know What You Want (‘Till it’s Gone!)

The other thing prospective employers will assume is you don’t really know what you want. When you tell them why you’d be perfect for the job and why it’s a position you’ll be thrilled to have, they’ll doubt your motives. Your past doesn’t indicate that you really know what will please you. Again, with a little clever maneuvering, you can frame it in such a way that your past actually proves that you know exactly what you want—and DON’T want.

But, ultimately, many job hoppers end up regretting their decisions. They fall into the “grass is always greener” syndrome. Once they’ve moved on and fallen into another monotonous routine somewhere else, they realize that the last job wasn’t so bad after all.

If you ever find yourself labeled as a “serial job hopper,” take some time to evaluate why it’s happening and how it’s affecting your long-term career objectives. Create strategies to overcome this issue so you can settle into a job that feels right and keeps your interest. Working with a career coach or participating in a group coaching program may also be helpful.

Blog Post: Scivicque, Chrissy. [Internet]. January 2011. The Pros and Cons of Job Hopping. Available from http://college.monster.com/training/articles/1421-the-pros-and-cons-of-job-hopping

How to Prepare for Etiquette Dinner

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Written by Ashley Williams
Center for Career & Life Planning Program Coordinator

Preparing for a networking event is never easy, but the Center for Career & Life Planning wants to make this transition for you as easy as possible. Listed below are some suggestions on how to prepare for a networking event, specifically this week’s Etiquette Dinner.

  1. Create a 20-30 second introductory pitch. See the attached handout and our YouTube video tutorial for suggestions.
  2. Practice a strong handshake. (Your goal is to give a firm, confident handshake; not a finger-crushing one).
  3. Be prepared to MIX & MINGLE! Knowing the common icebreaker/open-ended questions below will help you feel prepared in meeting new people.
  4. Set a realistic goal that pushes you a little out of your comfort zone. Branch out of your normal circle and set a goal for the number of new people/employers you want to meet.
  5. Due to the high volume of students, you will likely be talking to employers and alumni in groups. Feel free to connect with other students as well. Be as inclusive as possible, using open body language and open-ended questions.
  6. Follow the steps below to excuse yourself (professionally) when the conversation naturally wanes.
  7. Review dinner etiquette tips from Rollins 360 magazine.

COMMON ICE-BREAKERS:

Use open-ended questions after you deliver your 20-30 second pitch. These questions also can be used to keep a conversation flowing. Feel free to come up with your own (appropriate) ice-breaker questions as well!

  1. Start with a genuine compliment
  2. What do you do?
  3. What do you like most about what you do?
  4. Tell me about yourself.
  5. What do you like to do when you’re not working?
  6. How did you first get started in your industry?
  7. Looking back on when you graduated from college, was there anything you wish you had known?
  8. What is the biggest challenge you notice in your industry today?
9. What did you study in college?
  9. What advice would you have for someone interested in this field?
  10. (Introduce a friend to the person to whom you are speaking.)

HOW TO LEAVE A CONVERSATION APPROPRIATELY:

  1. It was great meeting you. Do you have a business card?
  2. It was great meeting you.

(Do not say you’ll follow up with them or connect in the future if you do not plan on following up).

AFTER THE EVENT, FOLLOW UP:

At the very least, send a thank you e-mail within 48 hours after the event. The sooner you do this, the more likely the individual will remember you. Re-cap what you discussed with that individual and what your next steps are; if appropriate, let them know what opportunities you are seeking next.

 Questions?

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Center for Career & Life Planning at (407) 646-2195 or stop by our office at 170 West Fairbanks, 1st floor.

How to Brand Yourself as a College Student

mackenzie
 Submitted by Mackenzie Thomas
 Center for Career & Life Planning Marketing Assistant

 

 

5 PERSONAL BRANDING TOOLS FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS

By: Sandra Long

Your personal brand is established and nurtured by you, whether online or offline. Start by reflecting on what is most important to you and your future. Be able to effectively share your passions, specialties and values in various ways. Don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s all happening online. Once you start networking or get that interview, your handshake and elevator pitch also have an impact on how people perceive you. Here are 5 tools to help you to establish your personal brand:

Create a powerful online presence.

Young people can overcome a negative perception about their age and experience with effective use of websites and social media. Bunee Tomlinson, a sophomore at Oklahoma City Community College and a freelance filmmaker, developed his keen interest in film and video production from an early age. Besides participating in film festivals and competitions, he began working as an intern in high school while starting his own freelance business. Bunee developed his own website (bunee.tv) which demonstrates his capabilities and film projects. On LinkedIn, Bunee chose “Freelance Filmmaker” as his title instead of “student”. With the website and LinkedIn profile, Bunee’s personal brand projects energy, confidence and creativity but not his young age.

Trudy Steinfeld, Assistant Vice President and Executive Director of Career Services at New York University, says “It often makes sense for a student to create a social resume. Many NYU students have their own website that is linked to their social media sites. Your personal website says who you are in a very interesting way. It might include video, photos and examples of other types of projects or work. Make sure it’s professional. Your social resume should contain relevant keywords. Also, link it to all your other social sites that are professional. If you have personal information make sure to use the privacy settings for each site. ”

Create a customized infographic.

Infographics are extremely popular so why not use one for your resume? Joseph Catrino, Assistant Dean of Career Services at Quinnipiac University, says “Infographic resumes can be highly effective. Pull out five things from the job description that match your talents and make an infographic. Depending on the industry, this can be very impressive for a student to submit to a hiring manager. They will probably still need a traditional resume for HR or recruiting staff.”

Be memorable with Business cards.

Business cards are an important tool for college students. It’s a great way to support your networking activity and become memorable…Read more.

Blog Post: Long, Sandra. [Internet]. January 2015. 5 Personal Branding Tools for College Schools. Available from http://www.blogging4jobs.com/job-search/5-personal-branding-tools-for-college-students/#80lhm23PyL3L4QOr.97

How Often Do You Come to Career & Life Planning? Here’s Why You Should…

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Submitted by Mackenzie Thomas
Center for Career & Life Planning Marketing Assistant

Sometimes college offices can seem daunting or unapproachable. The office may seem quiet or distant; however our office is nothing like that. We provide a warm, welcoming experience for students looking to advance themselves and gather career advice from our friendly advisors. There are several resources that a Career & Life Planning office can provide for students along with a comfortable environment to learn in. Featured below is a blog entry that focuses upon the experiences of a mother-daughter duo and how they came to fully understand and utilize the benefits and resources provided by a college’s career services office. So take a minute to read over their advice and remember that the Center for Career & Life Planning is always available for any questions that you may have. Enjoy!

6 Ways Students Can Make the Most of College Career Services

By Julie and Lindsey Mayfield

JULIE:

Like many parents, my husband and I are not only concerned that our kids have a rewarding collegeexperience, but also become gainfully employed after college. On our initial college visits, the need for Lindsey to take advantage of the career center at her school seemed far in the future. But the college years go more quickly than parents expect, and that time is now. Here are some things we’ve learned about how to make the best use of a school’s career services.

1. Educate yourself about all available resources: Most students are probably vaguely aware that their college or university offers career assistance, but it pays to research exactly what resources are available. For instance, most—if not all—colleges will have a career resource center, and many individual schools within a university will offer major-specific career resources as well. At Lindsey’s school, the University of Kansas, there is a University Career Center and individual career centers for the schools of engineering, business, music, and journalism.

2. Keep track of career fairs: Potential employers will be on campus to meet with students who are a good fit for their organizations and the kinds of employees they need. Your college’s career center can provide you with the dates and places so that you can plan to take advantage of job fairs.

3. Learn how to get hired: It’s not enough to simply know which jobs are out there. Students must also learn how to position themselves to get those jobs. That includes creating a résumé, crafting a cover letter, and learning how to interview, all of which a good career center can assist with.

LINDSEY:

I feel lucky that I have been able to take advantage of many of the resources at my school’s career center during my time in college. Unfortunately, many of my friends don’t know about all that the career services department has to offer, and if they do, they don’t necessarily take advantage of it. I maintain that the career center is one of the best resources at my school, and I have some tips for how to best use it.

1. Join a career-building organization or honor society: One of the best ways to stay up to date on career center goings-on is to join them! Many career centers sponsor clubs for career development; a weekly meeting can be the best way to stay involved, and you can even apply for leadership positions within that group as a résumé-builder within a résumé-builder. In addition, these groups often get the most in-depth information your career center has to offer on topics like etiquette, interviews, networking, and job applications.

2. Apply for on-campus jobs: I say “apply” for campus jobs rather than “get” campus jobs because I found that being hired for a campus job was much more difficult than I had expected. Nevertheless, I gained experience with applications, cover letters, and interviews even before I got my on-campus job, and the career center can help put you in touch with important on-campus employers. My mom and I believe in campus jobs because they work with your class schedule and look great on a résumé.

3. Simply show up: Each year career centers offer dozens of events like career fairs, etiquette dinners, and mock interviews. I hear about these all the time and always have good intentions about going, but don’t always follow through. Even if you feel that it’s too early in your college career or that your résumé isn’t strong enough, or you already have a solid job for after college, attending these events is important to your development as a future employee. No matter the excuse, do your very best to be there and be enthusiastic. You never know who you’ll meet or what you’ll learn.

Blog Post: Mayfield, Julie and Mayfield, Lindsey. [Internet]. February 2013. 6 Ways Students Can Make the Most of College Career Services. Available from http://www.usnews.com/education/blogs/twice-the-college-advice/2013/02/26/6-ways-students-can-make-the-most-of-college-career-services

 

Researching a Company Before the Interview

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Submitted by Mackenzie Thomas
Center for Career & Life Planning Marketing Assistant

Preparing for job interviews is daunting and, for most people, uncomfortable. To make the transition easier and to add dynamism to your interview, it is essential to learn as much as possible about the company that you are interviewing with in order to convey intelligence and professionalism in your interview. The best way to pursue the company is to do your research. There are plenty of online resources and personal networks that can put you into touch with the most important details of a company; however, it is best to stick with the basics. Featured below is a blog entry that helps explain the best approach to researching a company prior to the interview phase. Check it out and remember to contact the Center for Career & Life Planning if you need any assistance with resumes, interviewing, or career advice in general.

8 Ways to Know Everything About a Company—Even Before the Interview

By Lily Herman

Career experts always say to research a company before you head in for a job interview. Seems like a pretty simple step, right?

In practice though, doing that crucial investigating usually turns out to be way easier said than done. Where should you look for company information? Is there more you can do besides a simple Google search and company website scroll?

Fortunately, we’ve found the best resources on the web to help you figure what to research before you head into that interview.

  1. Have you checked out these seven resources when looking at a particular company? (The Huffington Post)
  2. Don’t just stop at researching the company; make sure you do a little diggingon your future boss, too. (Fast Company)
  3. Once you investigate your future employer, be sure to let him or her know in the interview that you’ve done your research. Just don’t get creepy.(Lifehacker)
  4. Give some thought to potential unconventional questions your interviewer may ask. What things in particular might someone at this company quiz you on? (Entrepreneur)
  5. If possible, ask industry experts off the record how this company is regarded by people in that sector. It could tell you a lot about an organization. (The Guardian)
  6. When researching a company, think about what types of specific questions you could ask the interviewer, not just the other way around. (Inc.)
  7. One very important step in your research of a company: Understand the organization’s hiring process. It’s not just crucial for submitting your resume and cover letter but also for knowing who’s going to interview you and what they’ll care about. (Forbes)
  8. In the world of pre-interview research, reading message board gossip about a company is totally fair game. (DailyWorth)
Blog Post: Herman, Lily. [Internet]. September 2014. 8 Ways to Know Everything About a Company—Even Before the Interview. Available from https://www.themuse.com/advice/8-ways-to-know-everything-about-a-companyeven-before-the-interview?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_term=Daily%20Email%20List&utm_campaign=The%20Easy%20Secret%20to%20Making%20Yourself%20Better%20at%20Anything.

Are You Ready for Life After Graduation?


Submimackenzietted by Mackenzie Thomas

Center for Career & Life Planning Marketing Assistant

It’s never too early to start to plan for your life after graduation. Where will you go? Where will you work? How do you get there? These are the questions that plague college students everywhere. Career Planning in college is essential for a successful post-grad future. Here at the Center for Career & Life Planning, we help open up the dialogue between students and advisors in order to set these plans in motion. Although our resources and advisors are extensive and beneficial for all Rollins students, featured below is an article that helps college students begin their path toward a successful career path. Listed here are five tips that can help you brainstorm for ways to bulk up your resumes, contact lists, and overall experiences prior to officially entering the career field of your choice.

5 Career Planning Tips for College Students

By Angela Ford

Graduating from college and entering the workforce is a daunting prospect. You’re spent years trying to figure out what you actually want to do and making sure your major aligns with your dream job. The workforce for millennials is full of competition. You’re up against peers who graduate with you as well as those already experienced in the workplace.  There are several ways you can gain an edge before starting the job hunt. Here are five career planning tips for college students which helped me get a jump-start on my career and can help you too.

1.  Get some work experience

One of the important determining factors hiring managers take into consideration is previous experience. Any professional work experience will help you skip ahead of other candidates. My work experience began two years before I started college. By the time I graduated I already had six years of work experience to give me an edge, a combination of childcare, retail and administrative.

You can present a professional edge by interning and learning as much as possible. Pay attention to what kind of work you enjoy doing and what and what you don’t like to narrow down job possibilities. Even if you don’t start out with your dream job there is plenty of time to work, gain knowledge, and find out what you actually like to do.

2.  Don’t be afraid to try something new or share your ideas

As an entry level employee, you’re part of the new workforce, the generation of leaders, entrepreneurs and new business owners. While your goal might not be CEO of a large corporation, you might just have the next idea for a startup or mobile application.

We are all unique and bring different ideas to the table and management might not be able to look at a project, job task or solution from every angle. While you might not aim to be president of a large company, learn as much as possible and don’t be afraid to share your unique perspective.

3.  Network

Find out how other professionals are presenting themselves online and in person…Read more.

Blog Post: Ford, Angela. [Internet]. September 2013. 5 Career Planning Tips for College Students. Available from http://www.good.co/blog/2013/09/06/5-career-planning-tips-for-college-students/.

Tips for the Job Search

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 Submitted by Julia Larson, Assistant Director of the Center for Career & Life Planning

10 Mistakes Millennials Make in the Job Search

By: 

This month, two recruiters from two very different industries visited our staff meeting to share their insider perspectives on hiring millennials. Katie Maillet, campus recruiter at Waltham-based Constant Contact, and Veronica Thomas, vice president of talent acquisition for commercial programs at RBS Citizens, discussed strategies for recruiting new talent in the digital age – from using social media to increasing diversity – and how we can better prepare our students for success.

I wanted to share the takeaways from this discussion more broadly, so I’ve compiled a list of 10 common mistakes that millennials make during the recruiting process – and how they can be avoided.

1. You don’t follow directions. The job/internship application is your first opportunity to show a potential employer what you’re made of, so read the instructions carefully! Usually, employers will require a resume and cover letter, but other times you may be asked to complete a project, respond to short answer questions or make your way through another screening mechanism. Read the job description and the application requirements thoroughly to avoid getting weeded out in the first round.

2. You don’t do your research. Rule of thumb: If the answer to your question can be found on the About page of the company website, don’t ask it. Recruiters talk to applicants all day long about their company, open positions, and why it’s a great place to work. Make their lives easier – and show you’re a serious contender – by doing your homework on the company, role and field/industry ahead of time. The company’s website, social media accounts and Google alerts are great places to find interesting information you can reference in your interactions. If you are invited to interview, request the names of your interviewers in advance so you can look them up on LinkedIn – you might find you have a connection in common. Another lesser known resource is Glassdoor.com, a growing database of six million company reviews, salary reports, interview reviews and questions – all shared by current and former employees.

3. You don’t update your privacy settings on social media. Millennials have grown up with social media and remember when it was used for only social purposes. Those days are long gone, and employers are doing their research, too. Despite the many warnings out there, employers still see negative posts about former employers, photos of candidates with red solo cups, and other no-no’s. Think twice about what you post on Facebook and Twitter, and don’t forget about other searchable platforms like Instagram, Vine and YouTube. Then take a few minutes to look at them through the eyes of a potential employer and adjust your privacy settings accordingly.

4. Your email address / voicemail greeting is weird.

Read more.

Blog Post: Stephens, Alexandra. [Internet]. November 2014. 10 Mistakes Millennials Make in the Job Search. Available from https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/20141124140038-14213307-10-mistakes-millennials-make.
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