Want to Get Past the First Interview? Cover the Tattoo!
Most employers in the corporate world would say, as long as our clients, customers, and colleagues can’t see them, tattoos are perfectly fine in the workplace. Still, a growing number of tattoo fans feel that body art won’t affect their chances of getting a job, whether they it be seen or not. Although tattoos are as mainstream as ever, unfortunately, they can be a detriment in the workplace. According to a recent msnbc.com report:
Employment experts, like Pam Vizer from the Polaris Career Center in Middleburg Heights, say the growing popularity of tattoos doesn’t mean they are accepted in the workplace. “If it’s distracting to the interviewer, then they’re not going to learn who you are and why you might be a good hire for them,” Vizer said.
Vizer also urged all employees to be aware of company dress codes. “There are different grooming and dress codes — and grooming and dress codes are completely legal,” she said.
In the end, whether it is a lifestyle choice or not, freedom of expression, or whatever the point is, in the conservative white collar world (and many professions in the blue collar world), you will be judged if you waltz into a job interview covered in tattoos, but even worse is, you probably won’t get the job.
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Working Abroad, Best Overseas Jobs for Americans
To work abroad, it takes certain training and skills as well as an independent and adventurous spirit. Working abroad offers an opportunity to break away from dreary unemployment statistics or a lackluster career, while exploring new and exciting environs. A New York Times article published back in 2009 even suggested that China was the new American dream for young people looking for challenging career opportunities. So, if you’re looking for the best overseas jobs for Americans, browse through the top ten list below to see where your education and skills fit in.
10. U.S. Government Jobs: According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the U.S. currently has some 88,700 overseas jobs. The positions that are most often available include administrative, technical and professional, accountants, auditors, foreign service officers, budget and program officers, management analysts, nurses, procurement officers, shorthand reporters, equipment specialists, engineers, social workers, housing officers, teachers, and alcohol and drug abuse specialists.
The average salary range for government jobs can range from $25,000 up to $100,000+ depending on your skills, education level, experiences and job choice. For more information about working abroad for the U.S. government, visit Federaljobs.net.
9. Private Sector Jobs: Job boards like Monster.com International provide descriptions and opportunities that match up with specific multi-national companies. The job description usually includes all of the necessary information including pay, educational requirements and benefits.
Very much like the government availability, the range of salaries mirror the skill level you pursue. Ordinarily, when a major corporation is seeking to fill a position from outside the locale, they are looking for a higher skill level. But if you have those skills, put them into play. To help you get started, visit: Overseasdigest.com or Workingoverseas.com.
8. English as a Second language (ESL): International business demands have steadily relied on overseas negotiations in English, so one of the mainstays for the overseas employment market is teaching English as a second language. English instructors are needed in Korea, Brazil, Norway, Thailand, and a multitude of other countries.
Although the compensation level can be low, many of the English teaching programs provide accommodations and stipends in excess of a basic amount of remuneration. So you will have the opportunity to save your entire salary during the term you choose. There are certain certifications that may also help market your teaching ability. For ESL job postings, visit Esljobs.com.
7. Computer Programming: With the advent of connectivity to the Internet, more developing countries seek those with computer skills to help develop websites, specialized programming skills, and basic understanding of computer technology. Language skills can often be a barrier, but not always. Not only can you establish yourself with international connectivity, you can teach the very basics to a thirsty world trying to market and distribute their goods.
The salary range usually reflects the locale’s economy. In Brazil, for example, a computer savvy person can earn $40,000-$80,000 per year. The real value lies in the fact that the dollar is nearly double the value in Brazil. So the $40K-$80K range really expands to $80,000 -$160,000 in real value. It is important to check out the local economy, its currency, and standard of living before taking the plunge. Check out the U.S. Department of Labor at www.bls.gov for more information.
6. Missionary Work: Missionary work is available to those who want to help others. Many of the evangelical organizations have international outreach programs that put the skills you have to work for others. Travel is an essential component of this vocation. Accommodations vary depending on location, but this type of work can be a rewarding and educational life experience.
The pay range has a sliding scale that balances on couples or families. A couple could earn up to $40,000 per year, while a family of four could bring in up to $76,000. Preparation for a career as a missionary includes religious studies with an emphasis on biblical, pastoral or pre-seminary. To obtain more information on missionary vocations visit www.cpmissions.net, www.namb.net, or www.gmi.org.
5. Accommodations Industry Jobs: Work abroad opportunities in the accommodations industry are a potpourri of extravagant hotels, boutique hotels, and youth hostels. The tourism trade can always offer bartenders, waiters or housekeepers an opportunity in some of the larger overseas tourist markets. Hostels offer more of a barter trade situation and no doubt a more casual work environment.
No matter what area of the accommodations industry you may find yourself in, compensation is reliant on the acquisition of tips. The better you are at face-to-face public relations, the more you make. It is important to research the location where you will ultimately decide to live because there are certain areas where tips simply do not exist. The following link should be helpful with oyur search: www.vervemagazine.com.
4. Environment/Outdoors Jobs: Oftentimes, the great outdoors needs a keeper. Intensive labor gives an adventurous soul the opportunity to work at National Parks or National Trails that need to be maintained. With parks and wildlife preserves all over the globe, some knowledge of repairing boardwalks, interpretation services, and general maintenance skills, you can find work in Costa Rica, Western Australia or even Brazil. An Internet foray into finding the Parks and finding out what they need can balloon into a great opportunity.
Trained foresters can make upwards of $75,000 per year. Visit www.foresters.org to find out about specific qualifications and requirements.
3. Animal Trainer: If you love animals and have that whispering gene in you, there are opportunities for this versatile career. Shelters, private preserves, animal parks, zoos and aquariums all over the world look for people with that spirit and good training. Although animal training has major physical demands, you won’t be bored working behind a desk!
According to Salary.com, the average salary for animal trainers is $27,000-$47,700 per year. A degree in zoology, animal management or zoo management buttresses your chances of finding one of these positions. For more information on animal training visit or www.animalschool.net or www.apdt.com.
2. Civilian Service on Military Bases: Some 11,200 jobs on U.S. Military Bases offer another route to exercise your travel and overseas job search. From Korea to Germany to not so calm Iraq, opportunities for those that want to lend a hand are plentiful. More information can be obtained at www.federaljobs.net.
1. Peace Corp: Although the Peace Corp is a voluntary organization, its value has changed the lives of hundreds of thousands over the years. With a mission of helping people of interested countries in meeting the need for trained men and women, helping promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples they serve, and helping promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans, Peace Corps jobs offer fantastic returns. In order to dig into this opportunity visit www.peacecorps.gov.
Posted in: Your Business, Your Career, Your Compensation, Your Education, Your Workplace
Tags: best jobs overseas, cool jobs, finding a job overseas, jobs abroad, jobs overseas, overseas jobs, tech jobs, working abroad
Wanna Job? Move to Silicon Valley
Ah, 2004. U.S. unemployment was a mere 6% and the average home price reached $264,540. 2004 was a time when many people lived well and earned more. Well today, many industries are either down and out, or out altogether, and many cities throughout the U.S. still have high unemployment rates. Silicon Valley is an exception.
Bloomberg reports that Silicon Valley employers rebounded from the recession by adding 12,300 positions in 2010, though the total number of jobs is only back to 2004 levels, according to an annual economic report on the region.
The study, released Februray 14, 2011, by Joint Venture: Silicon Valley Network and Silicon Valley Community Foundation, also found per- capita income stabilized last year, at $62,400 — the same level as in 2005. Meanwhile, the region is still reeling from cutbacks in government jobs and programs, according to the report.
“The good news is the private sector is doing its thing — don’t ask me how they’re doing it, they’re defying gravity,” Russell Hancock, chief executive officer of Joint Venture, a nonprofit group in San Jose, California, said in an interview. “The problem is the public sector is slammed.”
Google Inc., Facebook Inc. and a new crop of social- networking startups are stepping up hiring, helping offset government cuts and the shift of computer-hardware jobs to lower-cost regions. Google is adding 6,000 jobs worldwide this year, and Facebook plans to boost its workforce by 50 percent annually. The social-networking giant will move its headquarters to Menlo Park from nearby Palo Alto to accommodate the growth.
One of the companies adding employees was Apple, Inc. The Cupertino, California-based company increased its workforce by 36 percent California-based to 46,600 as of September 2010. Apple also reported having 2,800 full-time temporary workers and contractors around this time, up from 2,500 in 2009.
What can I do with a Communications Studies Degree?
Communications is a broad field that includes public relations, advertising, journalism, marketing, corporate training, and business management. A bachelor’s degree in communications can lead to a career as a broadcaster, journalist, publicist, editor, advertising manager, technical writer, marketing analyst, producer, or communications director. A master’s in communications can prepare you for a career in management and for director positions.
To obtain a communications studies degree, you should enroll in a bachelor’s degree program at an accredited college. Accredited colleges have the most comprehensive communications programs and most employers prefer to hire applicants with a degree from an accredited college. Keep in mind that the accrediting agency must be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
The following are just a few of the nations top accrediting agencies:
-The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
-The Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP)
-The Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA)
-The Distance Education and Training Council (DETC)
-National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD)
-Accrediting Commission for Community and Pre-collegiate Arts Schools
The following accrediting agencies offer regional accreditation:
-Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
-New England Association of Schools and Colleges
-North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
-Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
-Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
-Western Association of Schools and Colleges
The Distance Education and Training Council (DETC) accredits a large number of online colleges and online degree programs, so if you are planning to earn your communications degree online, make sure it is accredited by the DETC or other Department of Education recognized agency. Click here to search the U.S. Department of Education database of accredited postsecondary institutions and programs.
After earning your communications studies degree, you can expect to earn anywhere from $25,434 per year on the low end, up to $105,960 per year on the high end, depending on the position. Yearly salaries for communications jobs are as follows:
-Broadcaster – $37,710 (median)
-Journalist – $25,434-36,419 (entry level)
-Publicist – $27,917-$39,992 (entry level)
-Editor – $49,990 (median)
-Advertising Manager – $105,960 (median)
-Technical Writer – $60,140-$71,640 (median)
-Marketing Analyst – $55,570-$77,170 (median)
-Producer – $40,037-$71,109 (median)
To find top communications programs, try Princetonreview.com, Petersons.com, or U.S. News & World Report College Rankings.
57 Million Visit Job Placement Sites
More than 57.2 million job seekers visit job placement sites each month, according to a Forbes report about the best ways to find a job. The three most popular sites include CareerBuilder.com, Yahoo! HotJobs, and Monster.com. Although these sites have been around for more than a decade, a number of other sites have cropped up, stealing the market share from the top three.
Other job placement sites such as Simply Hired, Indeed, Snagajob.com, and Beyond.com gather postings from other job sites and reorganize them to make them easier to surf.
“Many corporate companies post job openings on their own corporate Web sites, so aggregators knock out the necessity to go around from site to site targeting specific companies,” says Chuck Schilling, research director at Nielsen.
Certainly the rotten economy is driving demand for more job sites. But there’s a heavy psychological component at work here, too. Newer sites carry “the shiny-and-new syndrome,” says Lorne Epstein, recruiting expert and author of You’re Hired! Interview Skills to Get the Job, so even if another site does the same thing, there is a hope that a newer site will do it better.
Job seekers also use government job sites to search for employment. The two top government websites are USAJOBS.gov and GovernmentJobs.com. These sites attract 2.8 million and 1 million visitors a month, respectively.
Defining your Key Performance Indicators
If you have been following the “Those Optimize Guys” podcast, you know that we have been working on a multipart exploration on defining who your business is. Last week, we discussed Defining your core values, or those things that are non negotiable to the core of your business.
This week, we discuss the next step, defining your key performance indicators, or those things that you have to do absolutely right in order for your business to succeed.
In the process, we will also be working with our own business ventures, The Goldberry Roasting Company, and Coding For Hire. We urge you to work with us through this process! If you would like to participate, make sure you contact us, and we’ll get you on board.
Should Your Business Use Targeted Advertising?
One of the biggest mistakes I hear online business making is down talking the importance of targeted advertising. The targeted advertising program most familiar to most is Google AdWords. When most people look at AdWords, their first reaction is that it’s expensive.
Yes, it is pricey at first glance, but before you decide to pass on this opportunity, you should take a moment to look a little deeper.
I covered this last week in a full article. If you are interested in pursuing this, take a look here.
Taipei Gaming Companies Recruit Cream of the Crop
Although Taiwan’s gaming market is smaller than China’s, the Island’s industry is worth $42.2 billion, which is up 20 percent over 2009. Growth in the industry has been spurred by ways to consume games from PCs, game consoles and online games, to smartphones and games on social networking sites such as Facebook and more, according to PCWorld. Because growth in Taiwan’s gaming industry is so great, 15 of the islands’ top gaming companies are now looking to fill 50 spots for gamers, programmers, graphic artists, and research and development professionals. PCWorld reports that some jobs even offered the chance to play computer games for a living with a salary of around NT$35,000 (US$1,194) a month, which is about average in Taiwan.
Jamesina Lin, a representative at Chinese Gamer International, one of Taiwan’s biggest online gaming companies said “people hired to play games would be heavily involved in game development.”
Chinese Gamer and other companies teamed with Taiwanese employment website, Job Bank, to host the Taiwan Game Job fair at the same time as Taipei’s biggest gaming show. “We had over 2,000 people apply at the job fair on Saturday and over 2,600 applications in all,” said Charlene Chang, spokesperson for Job Bank, which ran the job fair. Taiwanese gaming companies are serious about their work.
A total of 2,600 people applied for the 50 positions. Two thousand applied at the job fair, which took place Saturday, February 19, 2011 at the Taiwan Game Show at Taipei World Trade Center.
A Guide to Student Loan Consolidation
The federal government offers many options for financing your education from Federal Pell Grants and the Monetary Award Program (MAP) to PLUS Loans, Stafford Loans, and Federal Perkins Loans. Pell Grants and MAP awards do not have to be repaid, but student loans do.
Stafford Loans are low-interest student loans guaranteed by the government. Perkins Loans are campus-based loans with a fixed 5% interest rate, and a nine month grace period. Perkins loans are also guaranteed by the federal government. PLUS Loans (Parent Loans for Undergraduate Student) are granted to students based on the parents creditworthiness.
To cover the costs of tuition and education related expenses, most students will have to take out a number of loans from multiple lenders. The amounts, repayment terms, and repayment schedules will vary. Students may find that repaying several different lenders is not only taxing, but the payments may be too high after graduation and beyond. Fortunately, relief is possible through student loan consolidation.
Student loan consolidation is the refinancing of multiple student loans guaranteed by the federal government. The Higher Education Act (HEA) provides for a loan consolidation program under the Direct Loan Program and the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program. Under these programs, the student’s loans are paid off and a new consolidated loan is created. The loan consolidation program is a good option because:
-It simplifies the loan repayment process by combining all of the student’s Federal student loans into one loan, meaning there’s only one place to pay each month
-The interest rate will be lower than one or all of the original loans
-The monthly payments are typically lower, possibly 50% lower than the original monthly payments
-The amount of time to repay the loan will be extended beyond the original time period
-Consolidation may act as a safeguard against default
Applying for student loan consolidation is easy. Before applying, use an online calculator to estimate what your new monthly payments would be under one of four repayment plans including:
-Standard Repayment Plan
-Graduated Repayment Plan
-Extended Repayment Plan
-Income Contingent Repayment Plan (ICR)
Under the Standard Repayment Plan, you will pay a fixed amount each month and your payments will be no less than $50 a month for 10-30 years, based on total debt. Under the Graduated Repayment Plan, your minimum payment amount will equal the amount of interest accrued monthly. Payments will start out on the low end, then gradually increase every two years for 10-30 years.
The Extended Repayment Plan is for students with student loan debt that exceeds $30,000. Under this plan, you will have a maximum of 25 years to repay the loan and you can choose a fixed rate payment option (same amount each month) or a graduated monthly payment option, as discussed above. Under the Income Contingent Repayment Plan (ICR), monthly payments are based on several factors including yearly income, Direct Loan Balance, and family size. Payments will be spread out over a time period not to exceed 25 years.
To apply for student loan consolidation, gather the following documents:
-Your monthly billing statement
-Your annual statement or quarterly interest statement
-Your coupon book
-Website of your lender or servicer
-Your school’s financial aid office information (if you are currently in school)
Once you have all of the information listed here, visit the Federal Student Aid Programs Student Loan Consolidation Website to apply.
Both parties shill for the for-profit college industry
Some Democrats and Republicans are trying to scuttle attempts by the Obama administration to impose new rules on for-profit colleges to prevent abuses against students to rack up huge debt for dubious degrees.
The Department of Education is tired of federally subsidized student loans going to shady for-profit colleges that have poor track records of getting the students who do graduates good work — often leaving them stuck with mountains of debt. To curb this phenomenon, the agency has been moving along with a new regulation they call the “Gainful Employment” rule.
Under “Gainful Employment” rules, for profit schools would have to show that their students can find work without getting stuck with unreasonable debt in order to qualify for federal loans.
But behind the scenes, a bipartisan bloc of House members see things differently. They say the rule would reach too far and clamp down on institutions that do a decent job of educating and preparing students. But they want to tie the Department of Education’s hands completely, and block the funds they’d need to implement the rules at all.
Fortunately, many members of Congress are with the administration on this, and Obama could veto any bill with this language.
Posted in: Your Career, Your Education
Tags: for-profit college, for-profit college debt, for-profit college scam, for-profit education, Gainful Employment rules, graduation rates, loans for college, Obama Administration, student, student debt, student debt crisis, student loans