Be Prepared to Have a Go

Wise words by Gail Kelly, Westpac CEO about backing yourself.

“My advice and counsel to women – indeed it’s advice and counsel more broadly, but in particular to women – is to back yourself. Be prepared to have a go, be prepared to put your hand up be prepared to put your hand up before you think you’re ready for a role,” she said.

“Many, many women want to be 100 per cent ready for a job before they’re prepared to put their hand up and say have a look at me – my advice to young women in their careers is to back yourself so people out there want to support you, ask for the opportunities, dig deep when those opportunities come your way, and have a go.”

~ Gail Kelly is the first female CEO of one of Australia’s major banks. In the press last week was the announcement of her retirement. You can read more here about seven lessons Gail has learned in her career.

Being in the Right Place at the Right Time

Last week I attended a training course facilitated by Professor Jim Bright on Career Coaching, Counselling and Assessment. The first question he asked was “have you arrived in your current job by choice or by chance?” Jim is the co-author of the book called “The Chaos Theory of Careers” and this training covered how our careers are often shaped by unplanned events. Continue reading “Being in the Right Place at the Right Time”

The Wonder of Remote Interviewing

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A Prague job interview for an Irish woman travelling in Rajasthan, by Genevieve Ward

This month I’ve taken some time out from my business to travel through parts of India. My partner and I are two thirds of the way through a tour of Rajasthan, where we’ve visited palaces and forts, walked through small farming villages and market places, interacted with some of the local people and enjoyed their delicious food. It’s been an amazing experience so far. Continue reading “The Wonder of Remote Interviewing”

Delaying the Inevitable

Best Way to BeginEver heard the saying ‘Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today’? I recall my mum using this phrase when I was a teenager and watched a lot of television to avoid studying. Now, I’m having those moments (or hours) where instead of doing business stuff, I’m eating chocolate and catching up on the latest episodes of Rake. Yes folks, I’m procrastinating.

I’ve started thinking about what changes I need to make to improve my business. I’ve identified that the hard stuff for me is making sales calls. I’m good at the softer side of marketing via social media, posters and paid advertising. I do well with networking as I love getting out in the community. However, when it comes to contacting businesses to talk about what I do, I feel out of my comfort zone. So, how do I change this? Continue reading “Delaying the Inevitable”

Structuring a Professional Cover Letter

Cover LetterDrafting your cover letter may seem like an easy feat, but many people struggle with this task. It’s about finding a balance in the structure, formatting and clarity of your words. It should sell the writer, grab the attention of the reader and make it easy for the reader to see how you are the solution to their needs.

Continue reading “Structuring a Professional Cover Letter”

Last Minute Interview Checklist

checklistYour hard work in preparing an awesome job application has paid off and you are called up for an interview.  You know you can do the job, and are feeling confident about discussing what skills and experience you can bring to the role and the organisation.  Now, how do you keep your nerves in check in the lead up, to avoid that feeling of forgetting something?

Take a deep breath and get these details in order, then you’ll be stepping into the interview with an air of confidence:

  • Double check the time, date and location
  • Try on your interview outfit to make sure it’s clean, pressed and appropriate
  • Know who will be interviewing you and their role in the business
  • Prepare meaningful questions to ask the interviewer(s)
  • Research the company’s website to enable you to understand the business, such as services, locations, who’s who, core values and vision Continue reading “Last Minute Interview Checklist”

Servicing Your Career

Now that Spring is well and truly here and the grass (and weeds) are growing faster than ever, talk turns to gardening and the perennial gripe that the mower doesn’t work properly.  Have you heard of the saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”?  Just like your garden machinery your career can sometimes use a little love and attention to make sure you’re ready when a job opportunity steers your way.

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It doesn’t matter if you are chugging along in your world of work or you’re on the hunt for a new job, tick off these three things and you’ll be ready to spring into action:

  1. Rev up your resume – Is your resume marketing you?  Does your career summary highlight your strengths and make it clear to the reader the role and industry you are targeting?  Do your achievement statements include power words such as “strengthened”, “managed” and “improved”?  Having a stand out resume ready to send off will speed up the chances of a call to interview.
  2. Pump up your network activity – In a previous post I stressed the importance of building and maintaining meaningful relationships.  Every contact is important whether it’s at work, the newsagent, the cricket club or your art class.  Word of mouth is a powerful thing.
  3. Check your happiness gauge – Do you watch the clock for knock-off time and wonder whether you could be in a more fulfilling job?  The first step in kick starting a career change is self discovery.  By taking the time to assess your passions, strengths and values you can start to dream about a more fitting role and put steps in place to reach your goal.

I offer free 20 minute resume checks at our local market in Harcourt to help the community bring their resume up to speed.  How will you put the spark back into your career?

Cheers, Gen

How To Open Doors

Handleby Genevieve Ward

The last few weeks I’ve been super busy juggling my business activities between working with clients, marketing via social media, preparing presentation slides, responding to emails and building my professional contacts.  All important and exciting stuff to keep my business moving forward and thankfully my efforts are paying off!  I’ve started working with some local people to hone their job search skills, I’m presenting to graduate librarians on interview techniques and I’ve joined a local think tank.  I attribute these recent successes to networking. Continue reading “How To Open Doors”

What’s Great About Volunteering?

by Genevieve Ward

Research shows that Australians love to volunteer.  Not surprising really when research also shows that people who volunteer have a greater sense of overall life satisfaction.

Last week I volunteered at the Melbourne Careers Expo where I gave career and resume advice to job seekers.  When I agreed to help out my motives were to do some professional development, network and promote my business.  Landing a client would be a bonus. Continue reading “What’s Great About Volunteering?”

Staying Positive in Your Job Search

Sunflowerby Genevieve Ward

Equipped with a fabulous resume and a well-written cover letter, you’ve been busy submitting applications for that perfect job, but frustratingly the phone isn’t ringing.  When you’re in-between jobs or returning to work after a break, seeking employment can test one’s patience and feel disheartening.

So, how do you manage to stay positive in your job search?  Here are my top five techniques: Continue reading “Staying Positive in Your Job Search”