How To: Find the Best Next Role

When you take on a new role, you want it to be a good match. Finding that special position that will challenge you to grow and surround you with a positive environment is worth the time it takes to find. Why? Because nothing is as miserable as being stuck spending 40+ hours a week in a job that isn’t the best fit for you. So how do you find that perfect match? Let’s find out.

There is always the possibility that you enjoy working as an Executive Assistant but you need to work for a different Executive. However, if you feel a desire to embark on a journey to a new career, where do you start? Reflect on the essential aspects of yourself and begin your research based on what you discover.

Your Interests

It would be best if you almost started at the beginning when looking for your dream job. What things genuinely interest you? Make a list of a few things you love doing when you are not at work. Ask yourself what industries interest you as well. Now, put each interest into an industry category. Maybe a couple of the things you listed fall under the technological field. Finally, go through your contacts to see if you know anyone who works in the industries you like. Reach out to them and ask about entry points of that industry, how one can grow in it, and where the industry is heading.

Your Unique Gifts or Talents

We often do not realize what our specific gifts or talents are. Maggie Mistal, a career coach, advises us to turn to the people in our life when she asks, “What do people thank you for? What do people come to you for?” Build your new career on your strengths as long as they are also things you enjoy doing.

Your Inspired Abilities, Values, and Mission

Someone has probably asked you a question in the past that goes something like, what would you do even if it does not involve a decent salary? Think about what strengths and abilities you find rewarding and motivate you to get up in the morning. Maybe that is charity work. In this case, you may want to seek a position for a nonprofit. What aspects of your work do you value? Mistal better explains using your values to choose your dream job by saying, “For everyone it is different. Some people want that excitement of having every day be different. Others want to be creative in their work. For other people, it could be about giving back.” Remember, one of the above and beyond skills for an EA is big picture thinking. It is time to put this skill to work and dig deep within yourself to see what you want people to remember you for in the future.

Your Personality and Preferred Work Environment

Are you an introvert or an extrovert? What descriptive words would your friends and family use to describe your personality? If you are more of a social individual with a friendly personality, a job working in a laboratory, isolated from others, is most likely not your dream job. The position you will be happy in will fit your specific personality. The same thing goes for your work environment. Are you a parent who wants a change of pace and to work from home? Maybe you prefer to work for a smaller company where you can make more tight-knit relationships with your coworkers. Think about what work environment best suits your personality and situation.

Your Ideal Salary

Before going into a period between paychecks, make sure you know the minimum you need to make to maintain your core expenses. According to a post on Forbes.com entitled 9 Ways To Find Your Perfect Career Match, “Some career changes can involve taking a step back financially so understanding what the lowest you can go in terms of income (for a short period of time during your transition) is key information.”

Maggie Mistal sums up the best next steps when she says, “When people align how they make a living with who they are, that’s when they find amazing success.”

Meet Joanne Linden, CPS, CEAP, CWCA President and Master Trainer

How To: Put in Your Notice without Burning Bridges

If you have a rough experience in your workplace, it’s easy to have the desire to jump ship, perhaps in the most dramatic way possible. Before you charge out the front doors of your office in a brilliant blaze, consider the aftermath of an impulsive and emotional decision such as that. Maybe you aren’t even thinking about causing a scene, but you need to get out fast. No matter how you choreograph your exit, make sure your strategy includes a way to leave a good impression on your boss. Why does it matter, and how can you do that? Please read our latest blog to learn more.

Prevent hurting your future career by strategizing how to approach the situation and who you tell. It is also essential to think about how long your notice should be and how you plan to express the reasons for quitting.

Approaching the Situation

If you want to leave your position due to emotional grievances, take a few days before you act, so you can cool down and avoid making tensions worse. As stated in the last post, networking is essential in a professional environment, which is why you want to approach quitting with gratitude and professionalism. There are two vital things to remember after giving the resignation notice. Write a resignation letter that displays your intelligence. Feel free to use this resource from thebalancecareers.com to write a professional letter. Second, prepare to resign by researching things like what benefits you should receive and compensation due. The thebalancecareers.com also provides a checklist to use for preparation to leave.

You do not want management letting another company in the administrative sector know that you left without helping the transition go smoothly. Be strategic when giving your time to the Executive before leaving. Make sure he or she is not left in a bind because this will affect the entire company. As for your team, express gratitude for the few or many professionals you enjoyed working alongside. Remember to be thankful for the experience the Executive gave you.

Who You Inform

First and foremost, your boss is the person who needs to know about your resignation before anyone else. Unfortunately, many work environments are toxic and riddled with gossip. Avoid one of your team members or even someone below your pay grade informing the Executive before you do. For the same reasons, even though you are not legally obligated to tell your coworkers about resigning, letting everyone know will avoid your professional network falling apart. Why? Daniel Gulati, the coauthor of Passion & Purpose, a collection of stories from future leaders who have recently graduated with an MBA from Harvard Business School, once said, “Colleagues may be trying to read you and understand why you’re leaving.” You do not want to be the topic of a salacious rumor your next coworkers or Executive may come across in the future.

Make Your Notice Long Enough and Short Enough

We all know the standard practice for putting in a resignation is to give a two weeks’ notice. Giving less than two weeks will tarnish your reputation and probably prevent you from receiving an excellent reference letter. If you are under a union agreement or an employment contract, make sure to check this documentation because there may be a specific amount of time you need to give notice. It would help if you also considered the time it would take to train your replacement. On the other hand, more than three weeks’ notice may be too long. Daniel Gulati says, “The moment you tell people you’re leaving, you’re perceived as an outsider.”

Voicing Your Reasons to Quit

You will most likely need to prepare for an exit interview. Please use another article from the thebalancecareers.com to understand what to expect so that you can reply with kindness and respect, which will, again, prevent the downfall of your future professional network. Going back to the unfortunate reality of some work environments where people gossip, it is vital to tell each person the same reason for why you’re leaving to avoid negative rumors.

With the remnants of the pandemic still affecting the business world, here are resources from thebalancecareers.com to help you strategically resign when you cannot do it in person.

Following the techniques mentioned above will assist in ensuring that you continue to have a positive impact on your industry and those working in it.

Meet Joanne Linden, CPS, CEAP, CWCA President and Master Trainer

How To: Build a “Beyond Resume”

Meet Joanne Linden, CPS, CEAP, CWCA President and Master Trainer

Even before you have decided to relocate your skills to another workplace, you should have your resume ready to go. The decision to change your career direction or your workplace can sometimes come quickly and without warning. By keeping your resume updated consistently, you ensure that you are always ready at a moment’s notice to make your transition as smooth as possible. You don’t just want to have a resume ready. You need to make sure it also stands out above and beyond the rest. Let’s discuss a few tips that will help you create your “beyond resume!”

Before we go through each tip for building an impressive resume, remember that you are marketing yourself as if you were a brand of your own. Keep this in mind throughout the entire resume-building process to tell your story as a professional.

Make Your Resume Unique to the Specific Position You Are Applying For

According to career expert Jason Hill, founder of Sound Advice Careers, “One of the most common resume mistakes … is creating one single resume and sending it out to every hiring company they can find.” Understand what the company is looking for within the job description and display those details in your resume. Customizing your resume may be time-consuming for each job application, but it will make you stand out. Once you know the specifics this position is looking for, include a skills summary at the top of your resume that applies.

Incorporate Position Specific Keywords and Proactive Action Verbs

Did you know resumes are rarely viewed by people during the beginning review process? Niquenya Collins, president and CEO of Building Bridges Consulting, explains, “Instead, a computerized Applicant Tracking System (ATS) takes the first crack at narrowing the hundreds of applications received by every job announcement.” The ATS does so by choosing specific keywords and phrases matching the job description. When you write the bullet points under each position you have had in the past, describe your achievements at each company, not simply your job description, and use data when possible. In the description of your accomplishments, try not to use the bland wording “responsible for.” Use corrective action verbs to describe your past position better. Consider using this article from themuse.com to find the perfect action verb to describe your specific contribution to a past employer.

Layout Your Resume Properly

If you are a professional who has been in the workforce for several years, always place your experience section before the education section in your resume. Employers do not generally care where you receive an education when looking for a seasoned professional. It also helps the employer see your work timeline if it is in reverse chronological order.

Keep Your Resume Pristine and Uncluttered

To stand out, you will need a resume that will keep the employer’s attention, which is usually short. A clean resume will have a simple font, like Arial or Times New Roman, and is only one page long. It is no longer necessary to put an objective statement at the top of your resume. Employers generally will not care what type of job you want. They care about the person they are looking to hire. It is also possible to make the resume shorter by leaving out skills you have that the recruiter does not specifically want.

Proofread And Ask for a Fresh Set of Eyes

Just like when you would write an essay in school, make sure you read your resume over once for consistent design, once for grammar, spelling, and word choice, and once more for accuracy if you have any specific information you may have included. Once you have proofread your resume, ask a friend or coworker or someone you can trust to be honest, and ask for detailed feedback.

Last but not least is the “beyond” part of your resume. An article on LinkedIn saying, “New Survey Reveals 85% of All Jobs are Filled Via Networking,” gave professionals proof that who you know is important. One of the best ways to network, especially during a global pandemic when most of the workforce takes place digitally, is to make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date and utilized to make connections. You can find more tips by visiting the blog posted on glassdoor.com entitled 14 Tips for Writing a Rockstar Resume. Happy job hunting!

Meet Joanne Linden, CPS, CEAP, CWCA President and Master Trainer