Job Interview Advice

What an employer really wants to know during a  job interview?

Employers want to be sure they are hiring the right person. They want the answers to two big questions:

  1. Do you have the skills and/or experience that they need?
  2. Will you be able to work with them and fit in with the other employees?

Employers will probably not ask you these two questions directly. Instead, they will ask you many other questions and then decide whether you have what they need. Most interviews are short, maybe only 15 or 20 minutes. You must make sure that when you leave, the employer has answered YES to the two big questions. How can you do that? You must find:

  •         What skills and experience are wanted and what results a worker will need to produce.
  •         What personal qualities or attitudes a new worker will need in order to fit in.

To uncover this valuable information, you must ask the right questions and really listen to the answers.

Three questions you must ask:

  1. What skills or experience are you looking for in the person who takes this job?
  2. What results will this worker be expected to produce?
  3. What attitudes or personal qualities do you think a worker needs to fit in here?

Never leave an interview without the answers to these questions.

Finding the right words

Some people say things easily; for others, words come hard. Whatever your speaking skills, you might use the seven ideas below to get better results from phone calls and interviews.

  1. Use words that move you forward.

Some words are friendly: they make people feel like responding to you with a smile. You already know about “please” and “thank you,” but there are more. For instance, calling people by their names or mentioning the name of the company: “I would very much like to work for BestCo, Mr. Brown.”

  1. Drop words that hold you back.

Some words cause people to turn away, even though they may not understand why they do so. Try to stay away from “I” words. You want to communicate on the employer’s terms, not yours. Also, avoid words like “sort of” or “maybe” that make you sound uncertain.

  1. Use simple words.
  2. Do not wave red-flag words.

Some words make you sound critical or angry. Avoid “shoulds” and “ought to’s” and other words that put people on the defensive. When describing your injury, avoid descriptions such as “I broke my back.” Replace it with “I injured my back.”

  1. Avoid slang.

Is The Job Market Starting To Pick Up?

Every day I read more and more articles that indicate the job market is starting to turn around and that the average U.S. employee is more comfortable leaving their job, as prospects of new ones will pop up.  Yes, there are some industries where jobs are increasing, but not many for white collar workers.  Fortune 1000 companies continue to layoff workers on a weekly basis, and there doesn’t appear to be an end in sight.  DO NOT be fooled in thinking that you can slack off on your search because there are more jobs out there for you. This is very unlikely to be true.  Below is a few things you want to keep in mind when reading articles about job growth.


1)  Unemployment is running out for 220,000 people per week.  These individuals will no longer be counted in the unemployment rate numbers.


2)  If you are unemployed, companies that ARE looking to hire will be going after individuals that already have jobs.  The individual that is working is much more value to any company than someone who isn’t.  Trust me, it is easier to get a job when you have one than when you don’t.


3)  The longer you are unemployed, the more difficult it is to find a job.  If you have not been employed in the last two years, you will have to work twice as hard to find secure employment.


The good news is that there are some industries that are adding employees.  If you work in Green Technology, Healthcare or Infrastructure, you have opportunities many people will not have, so take advantage of them.


My point of this article is not to discourage you, my point is to make sure you stay the course.  Do not slack off now!  Keep working hard toward your goal.  Jobs are out there, you just have to work even harder now to find them and get an offer.  I wish you continued luck in your job search!

How writing helps in problem solving

Did you know that writing is actually therapeutic?

Well, it is and here I am going to show you how to solve everyday problems by using writing. Human beings have very powerful and imaginative brains that they rarely use to the maximum. Studies have actually proven that investors like Albert Einstein used a little more of their brains that an average person. You do not have to be a genius to do exceptional things. After all, some of the world’s wealthiest people like Bill Gates were thought to be stupid in their early stages of learning. So back to writing and how you can use this powerful tool not only to solve problems but also do exceptional things.

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Here are strategies that anyone can adopt:
1. Writing and More Writing

When you put a pen on paper or open a word document what comes to mind? One thing you realise is that once to take the first step your brain is tuned and ready to think. Some professional writers use this technique to generate ideas. They just take a pen and a paper and write whatever comes to mind. You often realise that when you are given a topic to write about, it can be difficult to come up with ideas. The secret is not to worry too much about what to write and just embarking on writing anything that comes to mind.

Here are ways that you can practice writing and more writing:

  • – Make sure that the environment is favourable for you to avoid distractions in your thinking process
  • – Prepare for the task early by putting in place all the materials you might need for the process
  • – If you plan on writing about a specific topic do a thorough research on your topic.

2. Meditate Through Writing

Writing is a sure way to relieve stress and vent out negative energy from your system.

For instance, if you are upset about not getting the grades you desire in school you can go to a secluded place and write down what you think might have been the cause. In addition, you can write down strategies that you think might help you solve the problem. It is much more like opening up to a friend because it helps you get the stress off your system. However, writing is much better because you can deal with very private issues that you would not otherwise share with anyone. One of the best writers in history wrote about their own personal experiences. You can also take advantage of this method to deal with stress.

3. Writing and Research

Have you ever wondered why people conduct research before writing?

Well the answer is that once they establish the problem they are compelled to look for the existing literature on the said topic. So when you are writing about anything the primary goal is to solve a given problem.

For instance, you might be given a paper to write about the effects of global warming. What the paper requires is that you contribute towards solving the problem of global warming.

You can follow the steps below to write a paper like this one: 

  • – Think of the problem in question and internalise it
  • – If you are not sure what the topic means to find out from a dictionary and the internet the meaning of the keywords in your topic
  • – Conduct research on the said topic to find out what other people have written about the topic
  • – Think of how the problem affects you or how it affects the community in which you live
  • – Come up with ways to solve the problem and reference accordingly

By taking these steps you will realise that you are actually solving a problem. However, sometimes research becomes difficult. You can easily take advantage of sites like to get research papers done for you. This is actually an easy and direct way to solve problems.

Studying Abroad: Do You Need a Step Up and Down Voltage Converter Transformer?

If you’re heading overseas for school, you’ve probably already thought about your wardrobe, got your passport, brushed up on your language skills, but you may not have considered your electrical needs. If you’re taking your computer, your cell phone, your alarm clock or any one of many other consumer electronics and appliances, there’s a good chance you’ll need think about voltage converters. One of your best bets may be to purchase a step up and down voltage converter transformer rather than a simple voltage converter. Here’s why.

In North America, electrical current is delivered from the wall outlet at 110 to 120v, and most of the electrical equipment and consumer electronics that you buy are designed to use electricity at that voltage. European countries, on the other hand, typically deliver electrical current to your appliances at 220 to 240v. Plugging your 110v appliance into a 220v outlet is strongly advised against. The usual result will be a shower of sparks or a fizzling zzzzt sound, and your hair dryer, coffee maker or computer will probably never work again.

Not all that long ago, students heading off for a semester or a year at a European college were advised to leave their electrical and electronic equipment at home and simply buy what they need when they reach their destination. For most college students, their “electronics” consisted of a hair dryer, a radio alarm clock, an electric shaver or perhaps a coffee maker or hot pot. Voltage converters were expensive, electrical devices were mostly cheap, and it just made more sense to pick up what you needed in the country where you’d be living.

Things have changed considerably since those days. Today’s student heading overseas for a semester of study is probably planning to take along a personal computer or a laptop, expensive cell phones, DVD players, video game consoles and high-end audio equipment. For a student already operating on a tight budget, replacing any of those pieces of electronics is an impossible expense. Luckily, even as the typical student’s investment in electronics has increased, the prices for voltage converters and voltage transformers has decreased, making it far more practical to buy a voltage converter than it is to replace all of your electronics.

A step up and down voltage converter transformer makes, even more, sense, especially if you’re likely to be making hops back and forth over the course of your overseas stay. Even the most advanced step up and down voltage converters are easily portable, so you can carry it with you. Having it will allow you to use all of your personal consumer electronics, no matter where you bought them and where you happen to be, and the better step up and down voltage converter transformers will automatically detect the current needed by the plugged in device and supply the right voltage to it.

The other thing you can do to make it easier for your electrical and electronics equipment to transition between home and your school abroad is to look specifically for dual voltage electronic devices. More and more, you’ll find 110 to 220 volts consumer electronics that eliminate the need for voltage converters entirely. Be sure to read the labels on the electrical and electronics devices you buy to figure out exactly what you need to operate them safely.

Julie O. McWilliams


Study Abroad For The Experience Of A Lifetime

There are many good reasons to study abroad. This means that as part of your college education, you would complete a portion of your work in another country. There are many places you can go for abroad study, just about anywhere you can think of. If you are interested in learning more about such an opportunity, there should be an advisor at your school who can tell you more about what is available and how you can take part in study programs abroad.

Many students from North America decide to study abroad in Europe. It’s no wonder, because the continent is a rich tapestry of diverse cultures and landscapes. An architecture student could travel to Italy and learn about ancient Italian architecture. A cooking student could travel to France to receive tutelage under fine French chefs. An art student could travel to Switzerland and paint idyllic mountain scenes. These are just a few examples of what may be possible. There are few limits to what you can do academically when studying overseas.

Sometimes you may travel as a group for abroad study, or you might go solo. There may even be an exchange program in place where a student from abroad travels to your school while you are at theirs. Education in the academic sense is just one benefit of traveling overseas for college study. You get to experience a whole new world, a new language, a new culture. You are able to see breathtaking monuments, landmarks and natural wonders that you may never see again, to walk in the footsteps of the ancients. And thanks to camera technology, you can capture your time abroad on film for everlasting memories.

If you want to study abroad, the first step is to find out what opportunities are available. As previously mentioned, there should be at least one advisor at your university that can help you. Then you will need to learn about costs and whether you can get financial aid for the trip if you need it. The matter of student travel insurance must be taken care of, as well as other legalities like any required vaccines and your passport. You should also find out about the college credits you will receive for spending time in abroad study. Once all is said and done, you are ready to embark on a grand learning adventure.

How To Get Good Grades – Should Kids Get Paid For Good Grades

When we are in school we all would like good grades but do we know how to get good grades?  Well I think the truth be told we do deep down know that if we want good grades that we are going to have to work at getting them.  Some kids, however, know how to get good grades but are not really willing to make the effort to do it.  At this point in their life they do not realize the importance of a good education but their parents sure do.

Parents, today, will often bribe their child to get a good grade.  Do you really think this is going to help them in the future.  Should kids get paid for good grades?  First off how much are you going to be dishing out?  The higher the mark the higher the pay?  Or are we just going to go flat rate?  Are you going to settle for just a passing grade or are we going to set a certain goal?

Parents are treading in dangerous waters when they start paying their children for something that they are quite capable of doing.  Children aren’t stupid.  They know how to get good grades.  Why should they though unless they are going to get paid for it.  This could definitely lead somewhere where you are not going to want your child to be in the future.

Sometime it is best not to give in to them.  Maybe a better stand would be to take away some privileges if the grades start to decline.  I am sure to regain those privileges they will start to remember how to get good grades and start to put the work into their studies.

Now if your child for some reason is having difficulty in school and really does not know how to get good grades you definitely need to take another approach.  Maybe in this case the child does need some incentive to work harder but again I do not think the best incentive is to pay them when they get a good grade.  First they may struggle and put the time in and never reach a good grade.  How is your child going to feel then?  You do not want your child to become so discouraged that they just give up no matter what you offer them.

At this point the best thing you can do for your child is to offer them some help and support.  You may not be able to do this yourself personally but there are available courses online that will help your child learn how to get good grades.