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Your #Career : 5 Devastating Career Mistakes Holding You Back…Being Aware of these Blund is the First Step to making Progress.

I've asked dozens of CEOs and very successful people about the mistakes they made. After a while, patterns emerge. Below are the top 5 I've heard.

Last week, I wrote about a career mistake that cost me $50,000. It was a very valuable lesson to learn and I've never made the same mistake again.

There's definite value in learning from mistakes. But how about avoiding them in the first place? Doing so can save you a lot of heartbreak - and money.

I spoke about them in a webinar I hosted with WorkItDaily. Avoid these and you'll progress much farther in your career.

1. Selling Yourself Short. Hello! This is exactly what happened to me and why I lost out on $50,000 worth of income. I didn't think I was good enough. With a few rare exceptions, we human beings are often our hardest critics. We tend to undersell our value. I now tell everyone I know who negotiates their salary raises to always bump up the amount by 10% - it's an inexact science but chances are, whatever you think you're worth, you're worth at least 10% more.

2. Letting Humility Overtake Courage. It is super important to be humble the more successful you become. However, there's a fine line to tread here. Sometimes we undervalue our skills and let the humbleness overtake our sense of selves (see #1 above). We believe that other people are smarter than us.

We think people older or more experienced must know more than us. Kat Cole, the Group President of Focus Brands, told me a great story about how when she became President of Cinnabon, she deferred always to her older colleagues. After a while, she realized she wasn't really leading the brand. She was letting her humility overtake her courage to speak up and make decisions - and in the process, not doing her job properly. Don't let your humbleness become your crutch.

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3. Focusing on the Money. Earvin "Magic" Johnson, the legendary basketball player, tells a great story about how Nike's founder, Phil Knight, offered him a stake in the company when it was just a startup. Johnson said that he was more focused on the money - not the equity - and in the process, lost out on probably hundreds of millions of dollars of stock gains. When making decisions, don't let short-term satisfaction - a lot of cash up front - overtake potential to earn more later.

I see this play out a lot with people who debate whether to take a higher paying job now or a lower paying job that teaches them new skills. My answer almost always is to take the lower paying job that will give them new skills since it will increase their overall value to an employer.

4. Getting Too Emotional. How many times have you fired off a hostile email only to regret it the moment you hit "Send." Me! Whenever I have done anything out of emotion, I've almost always immediately face-palmed myself. When it comes to your career, you mustn't get emotional.

Never make any major decision when emotional. Never email when emotional. Never discuss things when you are emotional. Doing so is almost always a mistake. Whenever you feel yourself getting too emotional, take a breath, walk away and come back when you've calmed down. You'd be surprised how quickly a short walk around the block or parking lot will change your perspective.

5. Being "dead" to people. Kevin Ryan, the uber-entrepreneur and investor behind successful companies like MongoDb, Business Insider, Gilt Groupe, notes that whenever he interviews for managers, he makes sure that person is spoken highly of by others. If he ever hears things like "that person was terrible to work for,", he says that candidate is immediately "dead to me." In other words, your reputation as a good person is critical.

A reputation takes years to build and only a second to destroy. Take the time to build a great reputation, someone that others enjoy working with and respect. Be aware of how you treat your colleagues, bosses and people who work for you. You'd be surprised how small the world is. People talk. Your reputation is as valuable as your credit score. It will determine whether you win that next job.

 

Inc.com | October 19, 2017 |

By Betty Liu

Host and editor-at-large, Bloomberg Markets

Your #Career : What I’ve Learned From My Failed And Successful Salary Negotiations….You can’t always Guarantee Success, But you can Always Put yourself in the Best Position to Get What you Want.

I remember vividly the first time I asked a boss for a raise. I was 24 and had just finished my first week as the office manager and assistant to an executive producer for a music video company in L.A. I was holding a check for $500, my salary for that week of work and the foreseeable future. I had agreed to the rate out of desperation, when my internship (through which I was earning $50 a day labeling hard drives) opened a door to joining the company full-time.

The night before, it had suddenly dawned on me how little $500 a week was. Between rent, car insurance, gas, and food (not to mention forthcoming taxes), there was the high risk that I would actually end up in the red after covering my basic necessities.

So I did what I had never done before. I opened up my laptop, wrote a heart-pounding email to my boss, and asked for $650 a week. Via email. A week after starting the job. On a Friday night. Needless to say, I had a lot to learn about salary negotiation. And in case you were wondering, I wasn’t successful that time around.

My family immigrated to Canada from Malaysia when I was a baby. Growing up, my parents took on grueling blue-collar jobs around the Greater Toronto area, earning hourly wages doing shift work at odd hours. I’m the first generation in my family to graduate from university. I share this to convey that I didn’t grow up with people who could advise me as to how to negotiate a salary in a corporate setting. Everything I’ve learned about salaries and salary negotiation, I figured out for myself.

I’ve negotiated (or attempted to negotiate) my salary about five times, and I’ve been successful three times and rejected twice. I now negotiate anytime I start a new job, at every annual review, and every time I’m given a promotion or a significant increase in my job responsibilities. Why? Many jobs earmark a salary range, not a specific salary number, for new positions, and most companies should expect a salary-increase ask at annual performance reviews. Otherwise, thanks to inflation, employees are actually making less money every year. Think about that.

Financial considerations aside, I’ve also learned that negotiating earns you respect because you are setting a value for yourself and your work instead of letting someone else set it for you. It’s an important skill to master if you want to be taken seriously and climb the ladder in any industry.


Related: Exactly What (Not) To Say When Negotiating Your Salary 


So as learned through my own successes (and more importantly, my failures), here are my best practices for asking for–and getting–more money:

1. PICK AN APPROPRIATE TIME TO ASK

You already know that initial job offers, promotions, and annual reviews are key times to negotiate your salary. That being said, you can certainly ask for more money outside of those moments, so long as you choose your timing wisely and are sensitive to the events in your manager’s work life. Major upheaval in the company? Your manager just got a new manager herself? It’s a Friday night the first week into your new job? You might want to wait until your boss is less stressed or preoccupied.


Related: How To Negotiate Your Salary When You Have No Obvious Leverage


2. HAVE THE CONVERSATION IN PERSON

I learned this the hard way in my $650 email ask. Negotiation should be a dialogue between you and your manager, and not come in a one-sided email that may go unread. A simple verbal declaration on your part that requires only a “yes” or “no” response from your manager isn’t your best bet either. Salary negotiations are a conversation–about your work, the future of your position, and where the company is overall. It’s more than okay to have notes and a loose script for your in-person meeting so you feel prepared to bring up all the relevant points as to why you should receive a raise.

 

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3. WARN YOUR MANAGER AHEAD OF TIME

Don’t drop the salary-negotiation bomb at the end of a check-in meeting during which you were discussing other routine projects. Be clear that you want to set up a meeting specifically to discuss your compensation. (If it’s your annual review, your manager should be expecting as much.) This allows your manager to mentally prepare for the conversation and to investigate if there are salary caps for your position. (Oftentimes these are out of his or her control, and he or she will need to ask for information from HR or his or her manager). A fruitful conversation doesn’t start with making your boss feel blindsided.

4. MENTION TANGIBLE RESULTS IN YOUR NEGOTIATION

Promptly take the word “deserving” out of your vocabulary. “Deserving” a salary increase because you feel like it’s time is unconvincing. Instead, make the numbers case for higher compensation. That means quantifying as many aspects of your job as possible. Your manager is less likely to rebut clear, hard evidence. For my most recent salary negotiation, I made a Powerpoint presentation that summed up all the work I’d done in the past year, along with the quantified results of that work and details of the additional projects and initiatives I’d taken on. I included information around the volume of content I’d worked on, other colleagues’ work I’d supported, presentations I’d made across the company, and a detailed list of new processes I’d proposed, organized, and templatized. My manager remarked afterward that she didn’t realize how much I had been doing, which signaled to me how important it was to regularly quantify and communicate your work to your manager.


Related:Here’s What You Need To Negotiate At Each Stage Of Your Career


5. CHECK YOUR EMOTIONS AT THE DOOR

This one is hard, I know. It’s natural to feel like a rejection is a personal blow to your worth as a human being and as an employee. I’ve found myself in the cycle of soaring high when I got a compliment on my work and falling really low when something was called out as not up to par. But it wasn’t sustainable, and when I got better at separating my personal self from the work, I became a more effective professional and a happier person.

6. WHATEVER THE OUTCOME, IT’S IMPORTANT TO PAT YOURSELF ON THE BACK

If you are unsuccessful negotiating, it’s still a win, because you most likely gained information on your position that you can leverage in the future. This might include the salary cap for your position, the financial situation of your team or company, what skill sets you might lack, and what you need to do before revisiting the salary conversation with your manager. Putting yourself out there will only help you.

 

FastCompany.com | October 4, 2017 | BY JASMEET SIDHU—JOPWELL 5 MINUTE READ

Your #Career : Exactly How To Ask For Your Old Job Back (And Get It)…Here’s how to put feelers out to see if a past employer would consider taking you back–and to negotiate for a better role than the one you left.

You’re a few months to a year into what you thought would be your dream job. You left a perfectly good job in order to take this one because you thought it would be a better opportunity. But now that some time has passed, it’s clear you were dead wrong. Not only is this not the job of your dreams, it isn’t even close to as good as the job you had before.

The thought of returning to your old job has crossed your mind more than once, but you don’t know how to go about approaching your old company about the possibility of getting rehired. Here what to do–in this order.

REVISIT WHY YOU LEFT

Once you’ve begun fantasizing about returning to your past employer, you’re likely to start weighing a lot of factors at once: Would they want me back? Have they backfilled by position by now? Is there even room for me if they have? Don’t get ahead of yourself.

Before you can answer any of those questions, you need to reexamine the reasons why you left in the first place. Think hard about whether your motivations back then should deter you from rejoining your past employer now. If any major downsides from your last role led you to quit it and you’d have to face them again, you might want to think twice about rejoining the company. But if not, you’re all clear to reach out to your former employer.

 

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START INFORMALLY

When you resigned, you likely left behind a boss, mentor, or a champion in the company who knows you well. Reach out to that person–informally at first–and confidentially discuss your desire to return to the company. Ask for their honest sense of the feasibility of that happening, including the company’s perception of you, your work, your skill set, how well-liked you were, and (most important of all) how the company seemed to feel about the circumstances surrounding your departure.

If you left on great terms and the company has a need for you, go into “soft-sell” mode and talk about the new skills you’ve acquired since you left. You want to position yourself as an incoming employee who’s going to add new value, not just the same old employee who left and now wants to return. The likelihood of your getting rehired goes way up if you give your contact inside the company all the ammunition they need to go back and sell your candidacy to those who are responsible for hiring.

RECONNECT FORMALLY

If your informal liaison gives you the green light, then have them put you in touch with a human resources officer or the person in charge of hiring for your position. But hang onto a job-interview mind-set for this stage–you aren’t negotiating anything just yet. You’ll need a well-crafted story for why your former employer should consider you; always assume there are other qualified candidates for the company to choose from.

But don’t downplay your experience since quitting. In fact, keep the focus of your story on the benefits of hiring you the second time around, since this is now what separates you from other candidates. Include new skills you’ve acquired in the meantime, plus your extensive knowledge of the company and the way it operates. Talk up the fact that you have relationships already in place with employees in the company, and emphasize how quickly you’ll be able to hit the ground running and get back up to speed.

PREPARE FOR A DIFFERENT TYPE OF INTERVIEW

Be ready for a very different job interview than what you might expect had you never worked at the company. That conversation will likely center around why you left and why you now want to come back. Expect some level of skepticism on the part of the company, since somebody who left once can always leave twice. The company might hesitate to reinvest in you if it can’t be sure you plan to stay, so your pitch needs to be compelling.

While you should focus on the main skills you’ll be bringing back to the company, the interview is also your chance to sell the new skills you’ll be bringing in this time around. Don’t hold back in making the case for yourself, and don’t be afraid to admit any mistakes you might’ve made in deciding to leave originally. You need to convince people that since you were a highly valuable employee the first time around, you can be an even more valuable employee the second time around.

NEGOTIATE FOR MORE THAN WHAT YOU LEFT WITH

Salary, job title, responsibilities: You might hesitate to, but you should negotiate for more of everything.

Once you move successfully through the interview process and it looks like the company is interested in bringing you back, you’ve gained leverage. So use it! The narrative you told about being a value-add clearly paid off, so now you need to carry it through the negotiation stage. As a result, you should ask for more money, a higher job title, and more responsibility.

This approach lets you negotiate from a position of strength. If the company winds up offering you the same job or salary that you had before, the ball is in your court to decide if it’s worth taking. But whatever you do, never accept a lower title or less pay than you had the first time around. It will be uncomfortable for you and for everybody around you, especially if past subordinates later become your peers–and it’s a sign that your company doesn’t value you as much as it did the first time around. You’d be better off accepting a job elsewhere.


Don Raskin is a senior partner at MME, an advertising and marketing agency in New York City. He is also the author of The Dirty Little Secrets of Getting Your Dream JobFollow Don on Facebook or explore his weekend career coaching sessions at donraskincoaching.com.

 

FastCompany.com | September 18, 2017 | BY DON RASKIN4 MINUTE READ

Your #Career : How To Negotiate Your Salary When You Have No Obvious Leverage… Just Because you’re a recent College Grad or a Career Changer Doesn’t Mean you Can’t Ask for a Pay Bump.

If there’s one thing that’s arguably more nerve-wracking than a job interview, it’s negotiating your salary. And if you’re a recent graduate or someone who wants to change careers, the stakes can feel even higher. How are you supposed to convince someone you’re worth more when you have next to no experience?

When you’re just starting out you might feel like you have to accept the first offer, but if you do you’re doing yourself a massive financial disservice. As Fast Company‘s Lydia Dishman reports in a previous story, not negotiating your starting salary can set you back more than $500,000 by the time you reach 60. It’s also common practice for companies to lowball initial offers, because they expect that jobseekers will negotiate.

Jacqueline Twillie, negotiation trainer and author of Navigating The Career Jungle: A Guide For Young Professionals,  recommends taking these steps below to put yourself in the stronger position possible:

TALK TO MEMBERS OF PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS OF YOUR TARGET INDUSTRY

Almost every article on salary negotiation will tell you that the first step of negotiating is to do your research, starting with finding out the market value of your position. Glassdoor and Google are great tools, but to be truly prepared, Twillie advises that jobseekers shouldn’t stop there.

“I tell people to speak with someone in professional associations. Those folks normally have their ear to the ground,” she says. Instead of asking “how much do you make?,” however, Twillie suggests that jobseekers should frame their question in the following way: “I’m considering this position in this city, and I’m thinking my value is $86,500, what do you think?

You can get a much more accurate picture this way. Noting the gender wage gap, Twillie also recommends that jobseekers speak with both men and women. “We know women get paid less than men,” so don’t just ask the women in the industry, she warns.


Related:The Gender Pay Gap is Even Worse At The Top


TREAT YOUR INTERVIEW LIKE A FILL-IN-THE-BLANK TEST

Twillie says she tells applicants that when they see a job description, “I tell them to look at it as if it’s a fill-in-the-blank for a test. A lot of the time, it’s not a full picture of what you’d be doing day to day.” She encourages applicants to “generate some questions” and “read between the lines.” For example, if a job description says that in your role, you will get special projects assigned from time to time, you’d want to ask, what kind of special projects? Who are the key partners involved? Depending on the answers you get, you might have some connections that could be a potential partner on that project.

A deep dive into specifics, says Twillie, allows you to have a range of leveraging options that might not immediately be obvious. This is especially useful if you don’t have a lot of industry experience. “Once you finish the interview process, you should have a clear idea of how you can add value to the organization.” She suggests that candidates start preparing by using this information and asking themselves, “how can I leverage my network or my skills?” Having clear answers to these questions will help you a great deal come negotiation time.

USE THE STAR METHOD TO HIGHLIGHT YOUR EXPERIENCE

When talking about their experiences, Twillie is a big fan of the STAR method–situation or task, action, and result. Say the interviewer throws you a question about encountering conflicts in a team environment, and you wanted to use the example of working on a group project in your sophomore year of college. Describe the project and the circumstances that led to the conflict, the actions you took to resolve the conflicts and the result. This is a great formula to show that you do have experience that is relevant to the job, even if it doesn’t seem like it.

For career changers and those who’ve held part-time jobs, Twillie also recommends mentioning numbers and tangible results–whether it’s sales figures, or a percentage value. Make sure to mention what you learned from your experience and how you might apply that learning to the position you’re interviewing for. That tells them that you “have a great track record of learning and growing,” Twillie says, and that you possess the foresight to apply real-life learnings in a real-world situations.


Related:This Is The Stage Of The Hiring Process When Jobseekers Have The Most Leverage 


SHOW YOUR KNOWLEDGE OF INDUSTRY TRENDS

Even if you don’t have experience in the industry, you can show your value by illustrating your knowledge of the industry. Twillie says that jobseekers should be able to talk about the steps they took to excel working in the role they are interviewing for. One obvious way to show this is to illustrate that you can “speak” the industry. “Show that you’re already deeply immersed knowledge-wise, speak to what’s happening in the new trends,” Twillie urges.

FIND A WAY TO USE YOUR DISADVANTAGE TO YOUR ADVANTAGE

Unfortunately, negotiations are fraught with biases, deception, and hidden agendas. If candidates can identify possible biases (whether conscious or unconscious) ahead of time, they can find a way to work around them. Yes, that includes working around inexperience. As Stephanie Vozza wrote in a previous story for Fast Company, it’s all about demonstrating your value to the company. Vozza wrote, “If you’re familiar with a new type of technology, for example, mention that the company will save time and resources because they won’t have to train you.”

 

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PRACTICE IN A LOW-STAKES SITUATION

If the thought of negotiation makes you drip with sweat, Twillie recommends doing a practice run in low-stakes situations. “For a person who’s uncomfortable negotiating, I advise them to call their recurring monthly bill.” Whether it’s your internet provider or your bank, ask the representatives, “am I getting the best possible rate?” Try to ask for a lower rate, or for additional services at your current rate.

ELICIT FEEDBACK FROM FRIENDS WHO CAN GIVE YOU A LITTLE BIT OF TOUGH LOVE

Lastly, Twillie recommends role-playing with a friend–someone who can hit you with the hard questions, but not be afraid to tell you what you need to improve on. It’s also a great idea to practice with someone who is knowledgeable about the role that you’re applying for.

Twillie also stress the importance of saying your target number out loud. “If you’ve never said $94,000, your voice might crack. Being aware of how you sound is very important in practice. That can make a big difference in $10,000 or $20,000.” To go a step further, she recommends that candidates record their practice negotiations–even film it if they can, so they can get an idea of their body language.


Related: These Are The Biggest Mistakes People Make During Interviews


As an entry-level candidate or career changer with little obvious leverage, following these tips above will put you in a strong position to ask for a bigger salary. But at end of the day, Twillie says, “negotiation is like a muscle: The more you practice, the better you get.” And yes, sometimes those practice don’t  yield successful results.

She tells candidates not to worry too much if they don’t get their desired outcome early on. “Continue to work hard and be diligent, but evaluate what you can do in that situation to continue to grow.” That way, when the next salary negotiation time rolls around, you’ll be armed with a whole lot more leverage than what you started with.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Anisa is the Editorial Assistant for Fast Company's Leadership section. She covers everything from personal development, entrepreneurship and the future of work.

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FastCompany.com | 9-18-17 | BY ANISA PURBASARI HORTON5 MINUTE READ

Your #Career : 6 Ways To Improve Your Crappy Salary And Your Career At The Same Time…Working an entry-level job, or just waiting for that raise? Here are some ways to side-gig that can boost your income and your career simultaneously.

grossed a whopping $23,244 my first year out of college–a starting salary that might be manageable in some cities but proved pretty tight in New York. Needless to say, side hustling quickly became a necessary way of life for me in order to supplement my meager income. But while I found I could make decent money babysitting and slinging lattes, it soon became important to find side gigs that benefited my career, too, instead of just my bank account.

Here are six ways you can do the same.

1. BUILD A SIDE HUSTLE ON THE BACK OF YOUR WORK SKILLS

The easiest, and most natural, option for padding a crappy salary is to leverage the skills you’re already developing in the office.

David Carlson, a 29-year-old Minneapolis-based finance manager, supplemented his early job as a staff accountant with a side gig as a spreadsheet consultant, improving financing and operation spreadsheets for small businesses. “My spreadsheet side hustle perfectly complemented my full-time job as an accountant,” says Carlson. “Having advanced technical skills is one of the ways you can differentiate yourself in finance and accounting.”

That’s true in various fields, though; anytime you pick up a specialized skill in your day job–from copywriting to proofreading to web design–you can usually deploy it on a freelance basis, too.


Related: How I Managed To Save Money On A $25,000 Salary In New York City


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2. ASK YOUR EMPLOYER ABOUT NON-COMPETES

You might not be able to base a freelance operation around exactly the same work you do at your 9-to-5, though. Developing a side gig that complements your day job may be a dream scenario for you, but not necessarily for your employer. That’s why many organizations add “non-compete clauses” to their work contracts, which restrict employees from taking their talents outside the office. Even “at-will” employees, who work without formal contracts, may face company-wide policies that impose the same limits. So if you know you’ll likely be facing a less-than-generous salary, ask about any non-competes before accepting an offer.

I created my site, Broke Millennial, in 2013 while working in public relations. Fortunately, my agency at the time confirmed that it had no issues with my site or with freelance writing in general, since those created no conflicts of interest. Then I interviewed for a job at a different agency. My freelance financial writing is what drew them to me in the first place, but it proved to be a deal breaker as a prospective employee. When the offer came in, the hiring manager told me that not only would I have to cease all freelance writing, but I’d have to shutter my blog as well. I turned down the job.

Eventually, my side hustle did lead me to a new job, as the brand manager for a fintech startup. The new employer allowed me to keep freelancing, which helped develop my network, and in turn helped the company grow and gain exposure.

3. PITCH AN OVERTIME PROJECT THAT LETS YOU PROVE WHAT YOU CAN DO

You may not even need to leave your office in order to pad that aggravatingly low salary of yours. Sometimes it just comes down to knowing which opportunities exist inside your own organization. Ask your boss about the ins and outs of your company’s protocol on overtime, and then pitch yourself for additional projects.

Don’t worry if they’re outside your department, either–in fact, looking for “stretch” assignments that take you outside your job description can help you move ahead in the company. Not only will you pick up some much-needed extra money this way, but you’ll also be able to demonstrate your ability to level up in your career and get promoted.


Related: How To Create Your Own Opportunities At Work


4. PICK UP A CUSTOMER SERVICE JOB (BUT NOT JUST ANY)

Never discount the value of working in customer service–focused jobs while you’re working on developing your skill set in another field. Seasonal work (think Santa’s elves at the mall) and part-time jobs can not only help with your monthly budget fluctuations, but they also sharpen your emotional intelligence, customer interaction skills, and even managerial duties. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to work a gig that requires less mental exertion than your day job. (Just be wary of commission-based gigs like selling knives door-to-door.)

Cato Johnson, a 31-year-old Arizona-based consumer finance attorney, works as a bartender on the weekends. “Most people assume attorneys are making a six-figure salary straight out of law school,” says Johnson. “Sometimes that’s the case, but it hasn’t been for me.”

Johnson, who has knocked $86,000 in student loans down to $5,000 in four years, puts nearly $2,000 a month toward his loans and maxes out his 401(k) contributions, which, after living expenses, leaves minimal discretionary income. Enter his part-time bartending gig.

“I wanted my side hustle to be something that I enjoyed, rather than merely being a second job,” says Johnson. “Being a bartender and dealing with people face-to-face has definitely forced me to brush up on my people skills, which can come in handy when dealing with clients, coworkers, executives, and other attorneys,” explains Johnson. And since recruiters and hiring managers say that emotional intelligence and other people-based skills are becoming ever more valuable, finding a side job that lets you brush them up isn’t a bad idea.

5. VOLUNTEER IN EXCHANGE FOR FREE CLASSES

Like many a 20-something New Yorker, I’ve paid for improv classes. But I met one woman in one of those class who told me about a loophole she’d discovered. She offered to handle social media and basic administrative work for the founders of the troupe in exchange for free classes. Improv training isn’t just for the comedic or theatrically inclined; MBA programs and major companies now offer improv-based workshops to help people improve their public speaking and listening skills, which always come in handy in the workplace.

Offering to volunteer in exchange for classes can work well in a variety of places, including in the fitness world. Sometimes there are even formal programs based around this type of trade-off. Modo Yoga, in Brooklyn, offers free yoga to “financially challenged” members of its community who are willing to work in its Energy Exchange program.

6. BARTER YOUR SKILLS, THEN CONVERT LEADS INTO FREELANCE CLIENTS

Bartering is the pinnacle of hustle moves, especially for people who are just starting out and might not feel comfortable selling their services on the side right away. Just think: What do you need, and what can you provide in exchange for what others need?

For example, I work with a personal trainer who knows I work in personal finance. My trainer is struggling to get her financial life together, so she’s interested in bartering her services (training) with me, in exchange for help developing and implementing a financial plan. I realize that deciding to work with her may not convert into a long-term paid relationship for me, but she can recommend me to people in her network.

And in addition to leading directly toward paying clients, bartering gives you another great opportunity that can benefit your career: the chance to develop the skill of negotiating–which couldn’t be more critical for improving your crappy salary in the long-term.


Erin Lowry is a personal finance expert, speaker, and the author of Broke Millennial: Stop Scraping By and Get Your Financial Life Together, an essential roadmap for going from flat-broke to financial badass.

 

FastCompany.com | September 14, 2017 | Erin Lowry

Your #Career : The Reason Why you Only have 24 Days Left(from today) to Ask for a Raise at Work… You deserve a raise and were planning to ask for one when you had your annual performance review in December. That’s way too late.

You've worked really hard this year and accomplished a ton. It's only September, but you've already met or exceeded all your goals for the year.

 You deserve a raise and were planning to ask for one when you had your annual performance review in December.

That's way too late.

You have until September 30 to make sure your boss knows why you deserve a huge bump in pay come January 1.

Lots of companies do an annual year end increase, and if your company does, you need to start talking with your manager now if you want more than an average increase. Why? Because raises don't happen overnight and they don't happen in a vacuum. For many companies, that process takes the entire 4th quarter, which is why you need to make your case before October 1. Here's what (probably) happens in your company for annual increases:

The CEO, CFO, and other executives determine a budget for that year. They may base it on an absolute dollar amount or they may base it on a percentage of the current salary budget. Regardless, that's the budget that exists and your manager can't go outside this budget (unless you report to the CEO, then all bets are off). The further down the food chain you are, the more your boss is bound by this budget.

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The money needs to be divided fairly. You are totally awesome, but so are your co-workers, Bob and Karen. Your manager has been given 3 percent of departmental salaries to use for raises. So, if you, Bob, and Karen are all outstanding, everyone's raises can't amount to more than 3 percent. If your boss gives you a 9 percent raise, Bob and Karen get nothing. (Assuming your salaries are identical.)

The raises need to be approved. Let's say you, Bob, and Karen really are amazing, and so your boss says 4 percent all around. She then has to send that to her boss, who then says, Nope, not only can you not go over your 3 percent budget, but I think that this other department deserves a better raise, so I'm knocking your group to 2.5 percent so that the other group can get bigger raises!

At this point, your manager has to make her case for why her group deserves extra money. She needs to be prepared--she won't win if she just says "but my group is awesome!"

It's too late to make changes at your performance review. When you sit down with your boss for your annual performance review, your boss has already determined your raise and it's been approved by all levels. So when she says, "Great job! 2.5 percent increase!" there's very little you can say to get that changed. Remember, you don't just have to convince her, you have to convince practically the entire leadership team because all the money has been allocated. Your boss can't yank back someone else's raise at this point, just because you've made an incredibly good argument for a larger increase.

Prepare now and meet with your manager before the end of September. Why do you deserve a big raise, or even a growth promotion? Go and make your argument now. Now is when your boss can decide to reward your efforts. It's far easier to find extra money for you at the beginning of the year end salary increase process than it is at the end.

Document your successes. Demonstrate how the company is better off because of what you've done. Show how you've gone above and beyond. Don't assume that your boss will be fair because she's a good boss. She may be awesome but make your case anyway. Most managers (even great ones) are not fully aware of everything you've done. Remember, they know less about the great employees because you take care of things on your own. So, speak up now!

Budgets are always going to limit the raise you'll receive, but by making your case early, your manager will have the best chance of getting permission to give you the best raise possible.

 

Businessinsider.com | September 8, 2017 | Suzanne LucasInc.

Your #Career : This Is How To Bring Up Salary During The Job Interview Process…Starting from the research phase, to when you receive the offer.

The salary you negotiate for yourself deeply impacts your attitude about any new position you accept. While the discussion is key to securing fit in a new role, you may not feel like you’re the one driving the conversation. But you should, and you can be.

Your talent is precious, and turnover is costly. Research compiled by the Center for American Progress indicates that re-staffing a position costs employers nearly 20% of the role’s annual salary. Employers want to hire capable staff who will remain happy, engaged, and productive. Candidates share this goal–so it’s in both parties’ best interest to iron out a truly suitable offer.

Not sure where to start? Let us walk you through salary negotiations step by step at each stage of the application process.

IN THE RESEARCH PHASE

You can use Glassdoor’s salary data to learn about compensation at the companies you’re interested in. If you find limited data for the specific position you’re after, take an average of what local companies pay professionals with that title–you want a verified salary range, which may not be shared in the job post. While researching this information, keep in mind that the base pay you accept impacts future raises you may garner. According to Stephen Miller from the Society of Human Resources Management, employees’ raises averaged about 3% of their base pay in 2016; the same is projected for 2017. Do the math. Consider what this growth rate may mean for your bottom line in the long term depending on the base pay you accept.

Some companies offer bonuses or merit increases that can be higher than 3%, however. Beyond straight cash, some companies have rich benefits that may include telecommuting, summer hours, or similar flexibility. Chisel out a hierarchy of what matters to you the most.

Before you can start truly assessing whether or not a salary is a good fit, though, it’s important to know what your skills are worth. Glassdoor’s free Know Your Worth™ personalized salary estimator functions “to calculate the estimated market value, or earning potential, of an individual based on characteristics of his or her current job, relevant work experience, and the local job market in real time.”

While you may have been incrementally garnering annual pay raises, you’ve also been accruing years of experience, gaining certifications and learning new skills, all of which add to your market value. Glassdoor’s tool calculates a refreshed market value, factoring in these areas of professional growth. Having a clear sense of your professional worth and knowing the salary range for the job you’re after are going to be key.

 

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IN THE APPLICATION PHASE

Dread filling out that little field that asks you to enter your salary expectation in a job application? You’re not alone. But the good news is, in some locales including New York City and the state of Massachusetts, it will soon be illegal for employers to request salary history, as it can perpetuate gender pay discrepancies. Nearly 20 states may soon follow suit.

Increasingly, salary history is regarded as an outdated basis for future compensation. So how do you navigate this when you want the job and you have to populate this field on an application? Lavie Margolin, career coach and author of Mastering the Job Interview, explains: “The later that any aspect of salary is brought up, the better position the candidate is in.”

Margolin also recognizes the importance of getting your materials noticed. To that end, he explains: “The easiest path to the next steps is a smooth one so unless there are concerns with

, one should consider doing it.”

Your other option is to leave that field blank or populate it with zeros. This strategy can work, leaving you in a better position to negotiate, or your materials could get passed over as incomplete. It’s a gamble–so make sure to weigh both strategies and decide which one is best for you.


Related: Four Ways You’re Messing Up Your Salary Negotiation Early In Your Career


IN AN EARLY-STAGE INTERVIEW

At some point, employers will likely want to confirm that your ranges are compatible, which may happen during the phone screening. That’s probably before many candidates want to tip their hands.

Margolin proposes: “One can request to defer to a later time and gauge the response. . . If done tactfully, it would not be unfavorable. If the recruiter becomes insistent, the candidate would have to decide if he or she wants to disclose at that point.”

If you share information, aim to keep it high level.

  • If a range is provided in the post: “I’m comfortable with the range indicated, and I’ll be ready to discuss further as I learn more about the company, its benefits, and the position.”
  • If no range is indicated: “I am hoping to learn the salary range for this position.” If it fits with your research, use the response above.

If you’re asked for your salary history, aim to defer. You don’t want to volunteer this as a compensation starting point. Learning what you earned in a previous job is not relevant to the current conversation.

Margolin recommends this language: “Given that I am transitioning from an industry with a vastly different pay structure (or perhaps geographic location or have been with one company for many years and have not tested the market), I do not think my salary history is very relevant and I would like to focus on fit for the role at this point.”

If you feel like you need to answer with a concrete number, Margolin suggests providing “the history but contextualize it as to why it is not applicable to current negotiations.” He recommends a statement such as: “Although in my last salary I grew from 40k to 70k over 12 years, the 70k was under market value. It was a great place to grow, but I am now ready to test the market.” It’s also a great opportunity to ask your questions about benefits, raises, bonuses and perks.


Related: 5 Often Overlooked Benefits That You Should Negotiate With A New Job Offer 


Once you learn that you’re through to the next round, you can employ a more granular strategy.

IN A LATE-STAGE OR FINAL INTERVIEW

You’re ready! You know what you want. You understand what this employer has to offer. Because you have a range in mind, think through what you think might be offered and how you would counter various proposals.

Margolin scripts several ways this can play out:

Interviewer: “We would like to make you an offer of $46k per year.”

Interviewee: Thank you for the offer…Would it be possible to negotiate on salary? I’m very interested in the position, but seeking $48-53k per year.”

At this point, the interviewer can answer in one of several different ways. If your interviewer says “We can offer you $52k,” for example, try countering with “Thank you. I’d like to talk it over with my family and confirm the details. I am really excited about the potential of working together.”

If the interviewer says, “I will have to speak with management about the possibility of a higher offer,” make sure to ask “When should I follow up with you?” so they know you mean business.

If they say, “We cannot give a higher salary,” try responding with: “Okay. Is there flexibility on some of the benefits? Can my salary be reevaluated at six months once I have proven myself? If it can, at what rate can I expect my salary to increase?”

You and your soon-to-be employers share the goal of arriving at a compensation package that will keep you happy in your new position. So welcome your next salary negotiation–it sets the bar for fit in your new role.

 

FastCompany.com | September 5, 2017 | 

Your #Career : The Key to Earning More Money May be Switching Jobs — and this Chart Proves It…Might Be Time to Send Out some Résumés.

Job hop too much and you're likely to raise some eyebrows — but stay in one place too long, and your income may suffer.

A new analysis from financial services company Nomuraconfirms what you've probably always suspected: Switching jobs will probably give you a bigger pay bump than sticking with your current employer.

Using the most recent data from the Atlanta Fed's Wage Trackerand ADP's Workforce Vitality Report, the report found that wage growth was higher for "job switchers" than "job stayers."

Employees who changed jobs earned about 1% more year-over-year than those who stayed with the same employer. That might not make a huge difference for one year, but it could add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars of lost wages over the course of your career.

Job switchers likely experience stronger bargaining power and greater salary increases when more opportunities are available or they find a new higher-paid role that better matches their talents, according to the report.

Comparing wage growth for job switchers and job stayers

In addition to being good for your paycheck, the ability to change jobs is also a measure of the overall US economy. Voluntary employee turnover has returned to prerecession levels, after declining between 2007 and 2010, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics' most recent Job Openings and Labor Turnover (JOLT) Survey.

For employees who haven't looked for a new job in a few years, it could be smart to strike while the iron is hot. As of June 2017, US employers were looking to fill an all-time high of 6.2 million jobs — more than double the 2.4 million openings that were available in July 2009.

Not that you can't get a big raise from your current employer. Switching departments, for example, could land you in a role that pays significantly more.

 

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Even if you stay in your current position, your employer has an incentive to keep you around. "Every second spent recruiting, hiring, training, and developing new employees is time taken away from your core business," Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos, previously told Business Insider.

The importance of securing big salary gains in your 20s and 30s can't be overlooked. Income grows a lot when you're younger, and tends to level off in your 40s. According to salary data, on average, women's earnings peak at 38 and men's at 48.

Might be time to send out some résumés.

 

Businessinsider.com | August 24, 2017 | 

 

Your #Career : 9 Signs an Employee Deserves a Promotion (Which Never Appear on Performance Evaluations)…If you want to Get Promoted, Think more than Skills, Qualifications, and Experience. The most Promotable Employees also have the Right Attitude — and the Right Outlook on Individual and Team Performance.

Along with, "How do I get a raise?" one of the most common questions that even exceptional employees ask their boss is, "What can I do to get promoted?"

For some bosses, the answer to getting promoted is obvious: complete a specific task, gain a certain amount of experience, or simply be the next in line.

Other people, like HubSpot co-founder Dharmesh Shah, take a different approach. Where getting promoted is concerned, Dharmesh focuses on the employee's attitude.

His reasoning is simple. Attitude informs action. Attitude informs behavior. Attitude is the driving force behind every achievement, accomplishment, and success.

Attitude, where performance and therefore advancement is concerned, is everything.

So according to Dharmesh, if you want to get promoted:

1. Be a servant of others, not yourself.

People never accomplish anything worthwhile by themselves. That's why great teammates make everyone around them better.

Take an unselfish basketball player: He makes his teammates better by delivering pinpoint passes in space, boxing out, setting solid screens, and rotating on defense, all the things that don't show up in the statistics but definitely improve the performance of his teammates.

Great leaders provide the tools, training, and culture to help their employees do their jobs better and achieve their own goals.

Great companies serve their customers first; they know that by serving their customers they ultimately serve the interests of their business.

The employee who's only in it for himself will someday be by himself. The employee in it for others may not get all the limelight, but the right people definitely notice.

 

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2. Be humble, not arrogant.

Arrogant people think they know everything; humble people are always learning. Humble people ask questions. Humble people ask for help.

Humble people automatically share credit because they instinctively know that every effort, no matter how seemingly individual, is actually a team effort.

Humble people are willing to take on any job, no matter how menial, because no job is beneath them -- and in the process they prove that no job is above them.

Ultimately, success is not limited by how high you can stretch but by how low you are willing to bend.

3. Be optimistic, not pessimistic.

Optimists add energy; pessimists drain away energy. Optimists try more things and take more (intelligent) risks simply because they're focused on what can go right. Pessimists never get started because they're too busy thinking about what might go wrong.

Optimists don't feel they need to wait--to be promoted or accepted or discovered--they feel if they work hard they can accomplish almost anything.

Best of all, optimism is infectious.

4. Focus on execution.

Planning is important, but too many shelves are filled with strategies that were never implemented.

The best employees develop an idea, create a strategy, set up a basic operational plan, then execute, adapt, execute, revise, execute, refine, and make incredible things happen based on what works in practice, not in theory.

Success starts with strategy but ends with execution.

Employees who advance are certainly good at planning, but they are awesome at execution.

5. Think long-term.

Real leadership isn't short-lived. Real leaders are able to consistently inspire, motivate, and make people feel better about themselves than they think they have a right to feel. Real leaders are people you follow not because you have to, but because you want to.

Other people will follow a real leader anywhere. And they'll follow a real leader forever because she has a knack for making you feel you aren't actually following--wherever you're going, you feel like you're going there together.

Creating that level of respect and trust, and that type of bond takes time. Great employees consider not just the short-term but also the long-term--and then act accordingly.

And in time, great employees are placed in positions where they can truly influence the success of their company.

6. Be a volunteer, not a draftee.

The best employees are natural volunteers. They volunteer for extra tasks. They volunteer for responsibility before responsibility is delegated. They volunteer to train or mentor new employees. They offer to help people who need help--and even those who don't.

Why is that important? Volunteering demonstrates leadership aptitude. Leaders are proactive, and proactive people don't wait to be told what to do. They're already doing it.

Successful employees earn promotions by working harder, just like successful businesses earn higher revenue by delivering greater value and successful entrepreneurs earn bigger payoffs by working hard well before any potential return is in sight.

Draftees expect to be asked. Draftees expect to be compensated before they will even consider doing more.

Volunteers just do it--and, in time, their careers flourish.

7. Be self-aware, not selfish.

Self-aware people understand themselves, and that helps them understand the people around them. They are more empathetic and accepting of the weaknesses of others because they know how it feels to fail.

And they can lead with compassion and kindness because they know how it feels to be treated with disregard, disdain, and scorn. They do everything they can to help others reach their goals, because they know how it feels to fall short.

Self-aware people solve for the team, the organization, and the customer--not just for themselves.

Every organization needs self-aware people in key roles. (What is a key role? Every role.)

8. Be adaptable, not rigid.

Things constantly change in high-growth companies. Inflexible people grow uncomfortable with too much change and consciously or unconsciously try to slow things down.

Best practices are important. Methodology is important. Guidelines, procedures, policies, all can help a business run smoothly.

But anyone can follow guidelines and procedures. Great employees are willing, even eager, to change. Great employees respond to new circumstances and challenges with excitement, not hesitation. Employees willing to adapt tend to advance more quickly because that is what every company--especially a high-growth company--needs.

Otherwise, growth becomes a thing of the past and not the future.

9. Be a teacher, not a truant officer.

The best people like to teach. They don't hoard knowledge, they spread it and share what they know.

A truant officer's job is to make sure people show up. A teacher's job is to make sure people learn.

Besides, truant officers tend to give "advice." Do this. Don't do that. Go here. Don't go there.

A teacher gives knowledge. A teacher helps other people gain experience, wisdom, and insight. A teacher willingly and happily gives other people tools they can use.

In the process a teacher build teams. And a teacher advances, because a true team builder is a rare and precious gem.

Now it's your turn: How do you make promotion decisions? What criteria do you use?

 

Inc.com | August 22, 2017 | Jeff Haden

Your #Career : 15 Signs you’re Underpaid… Feeling Underpaid Can be One of the Most Disheartening Aspects of Work.

"It stands to reason, because for many, compensation is a concrete litmus test of how well you're performing and progressing on the job — and how highly you're valued," says Lynn Taylor, a national workplace expert and the author of "Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant: How to Manage Childish Boss Behavior and Thrive in Your Job."

According to the 2016 Global Workforce Study, which surveyed more than 31,000 employees around the world, almost half of US employees believe they are being paid unfairly compared to workers who hold similar jobs either at their own or other companies.

And a 2016 PayScale report is even bleaker. About two-thirds of surveyed workers said they felt they weren't paid what they're worth. What's more, feeling underpaid was one of the top reasons employees said they quit their jobs.

Interestingly, people are often wrong about whether they're paid fairly or not. As PayScale found, two-thirds of people who are paid their market value feel they're underpaid, and even 35% of people who are paid above their market value think the same.

"The topic of employees' salaries is well guarded by most companies, so it's not always easy to figure out how your pay compares to your colleagues'," says Taylor. "If you're willing to invest the time and research or look for the signs, however, you'll be better informed as to whether you should ask for a raise or walk."

Here are 15 signs you're paid less than you should be:

A similar job listing on your company website offers higher pay

"If there are multiple positions like yours at the company, the job description closely resembles yours, and the salary is higher, that's one of the most obvious signs," says Taylor.

Stay on top of this by searching your own company's job postings every now and then to monitor what new employees are being paid, "and to see if that feels reasonable given your current level of experience and role in the company," adds Michael Kerr, an international business speaker and author of "The Humor Advantage."

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Your firm's revenue has taken off, but your salary has barely budged

If your company is private, it's harder to measure revenue growth vs. a public company.

"But you're likely having discussions about corporate growth with managers in your normal course of business," Taylor says. "This is an opportunity to dig deeper. If you're armed with the fact that the firm has seen 20% growth in one year, but your salary is under par, you'll strengthen your argument for a raise."

The salary for your first job was below market, and it hasn't changed much since

Think back to the salary you accepted for your first job — maybe you accepted a salary you knew was low because you were desperate.

Now think about your progression from there. If your income hasn't changed much, you're probably underpaid.

"It can be difficult to play catch-up if you started low," Taylor says.

You make less than your colleagues with similar levels of experience and education

Although people rarely talk openly about money — and in many companies are prohibited from doing so — there may be association or industry networking events where people who work in similar fields with similar levels of experience share anecdotes about their workplace and the topic of salary comes up, says Kerr.

"If the discussion makes your jaw drop, then there's a good chance you are being underpaid," he says.

Your level of responsibility has increased, but your salary hasn't

"If your boss keeps piling on added duties, extra work, and especially more responsibilities without any increase in compensation or even a discussion about it, this may be a sign that you are underpaid," says Kerr.

Another sign: Your title has been upgraded, but it's not reflected in your paycheck, says Taylor.

Everyone around you seems to be getting bonuses — but you're not

Is there talk of annual bonuses, or performance bonuses, among your colleagues — but you've never received one yourself? You may want to look into this.

It may simply have been an oversight, but if it was intentional, you should find out why you're not getting that extra money ... especially if you're confident that you deserve it.

You're in a specialty area that's in high demand

You're in a specialty area that's in high demand

US Air Force

Some jobs are in higher demand than others.

"Cyber security and SEO/SEM marketing are hot job specialties, for example, whereas certain other positions are becoming more automated. Or there may be great supply, but reduced demand," Taylor says. "Factor in where your field of expertise stands in the general job marketplace."

Your mindset is 'I'm just happy to be employed'

Have you fallen into a complacent mindset of being happy just to have a job? Most managers can sense this and will not go out of their way to make you an "absurdly happy" employee, if you're already a happy employee, Taylor says.

You haven't had a performance review or raise in over a year

If it seems that the time for your performance review has come and gone — or it came without a raise — you might have reason to believe you're underpaid, says Taylor.

Your company has a high turnover rate

Your company has a high turnover rate

Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

If there's high employee turnover despite there being a positive workplace culture, this can be a sign that wages in your organization in general are below what they could or should be, Kerr says.

You have a gut feeling

"If you feel inclined to take extra long lunch breaks, steal the occasional office supply, or in some other small way take advantage of something in your workplace because you feel you are 'owed' it, even at a subconscious level, this could be an obvious sign that at some level you feel underpaid," says Kerr.

You never negotiate your pay

An analysis by Salary.com suggests that failing to negotiate could potentially cost you more than a million dollars over the course of your career.

Your boss is evasive when you want to discuss your career path

Do you find that it's impossible to discuss your long-term career growth with your boss? He or she may be reluctant because that may lead to a salary discussion or something complex that they're unprepared to discuss.

"That's not something you should be willing to sweep under the rug for very long, even if your boss is," Taylor says.

Your salary increases are negligible

Perhaps you did get a raise last year or for the last two years, but in the 1% to 3% range. Depending on your department, company, and industry, particularly if you're on the lower end of the scale, you may be underpaid, says Taylor: "A lot depends on the other feedback and information you're getting along the way."

The No. 1 sign you're underpaid: research says so

If any of the previous signs ring true, it's a good catalyst to do some investigating.

According to a Glassdoor online survey conducted in the US by Harris Poll, 69% of employees say they wish they had a better understanding of fair market compensation for their positions within their local job market.

But, thanks to a number of handy online tools, there's really no excuse not to know whether you're being paid fairly or not.

By supplying your current salary, title, company, location, and experience, you can use Glassdoor's Know Your Worth tool to see how your market value has trended over time and how it compares to workers similar to you. Last year, the site found that the majority of its users were underpaid by about $4,700.

You can also take PayScale's Salary Survey to access a free report with a salary range based on your position, skills, education, and experience.

At the end of the day, the No. 1, most undeniable sign you're being underpaid is if the data shows you're getting less than your market value.

Jacquelyn Smith contributed to a previous version of this article.

 

Businessinsider.com | July 19, 2017 | Rachel Gillett