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Posted May 16, 2016 by

Improving your writing and getting career prospects

Woman writing photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

You may be able to walk the talk, but can you write it?

It’s no big secret that writing skills factor in greatly when it comes to getting and keeping a job, especially in such a competitive market. In a study conducted by Grammarly, out of 100 native English speakers’ LinkedIn profiles, those with fewer grammatical errors had more promotions and held higher positions in their respective companies.

With this in mind, it’s no wonder writing is a crucial communication tool for those in the workforce. In order to be fully able to convey your ideas, you need to articulate them clearly to other people. Writing often serves as the medium we relate ideas with, whether sending and responding to an email or updating our resumes for future employers.

Despite this overwhelming piece of evidence, not everyone pays attention to improving their writing. Do you want to remain stagnant in your job, or do you want to grow and get career prospects? Here are a few tips on how to become a better writer in the workforce:

1. Be a wide reader

You are what you read. There are numerous benefits linked to reading, and among the most notable would be improved writing skills.

In order to be great, you need to take inspiration from those who already are. Train your brain to tune into good writing practices by reading extensively. Others’ writing styles can certainly influence your own if you read them enough. Take time to sit back with a book, a well-written blog entry, or even browse through the news at least once a day. Aside from being able to unwind after or before the stressful day ahead, you’ll also be able to acquire new knowledge.

This tip is especially helpful if you’re in the creative industry, where creative and powerful writing is the main tool of the trade, but it can also be beneficial for simple business writing. Noting some common trends in your favorite writers like style, grammar, and tone go a long way in helping to develop your own voice. You also learn new things in the process, which you can incorporate in the other areas of your life.

2. Read your work backwards

It sounds silly at first, but it’s effective in weeding out any grammatical errors you’ve missed in your last work email. Give it a shot, and it could save you from an embarrassing typo.

Our minds are programmed to autocorrect any minor errors they encounter. Remember those online tests that ask you to spot the “the” in a sentence? You may have been one of the majority who filtered out the extra “the”, in which case this second tip can come in handy to avoid any similar grammatical slip-ups.

Start from the last word of your composition up to the first word you’ve written. Since you’re no longer operating in the context of the content, your focus stays on the form of the text. If you’re already aware of what errors you’re on the lookout for, you’ll be able to spot any repetitive words, misplaced punctuation, and faulty spacing. Note this only works on a structural level, and not if you’re looking for something else like content relevance and fact-checking.

3. Turn spell check on

This doesn’t necessarily improve your skill, but it’s an easy fix if you’re in a hurry to compose an error-free report you’ll be delivering to your bosses the next day. Ruby Hardman, an editor from ResumesPlanet shared: “We can’t always be on top of our writing game, and having technology on our side helps in taking some of the load off our shoulders.”

Turn spell check on so you can automatically spot mistakes without having to painstakingly go through your work word per word. Don’t take this to mean you can let your guard down. In fact, this should give you time to focus on other aspects of your writing. If you’re writing up a resume, take the time to organize the details of it. If you’re writing a speech for a presentation, use it to focus on your tone and fine-tuning your content to the audience you’re presenting to.

Just remember that spell check isn’t perfect, either. There will be some errors it will miss and some idioms it may misinterpret. In that case, always have a dictionary ready to counter-check the results. Sometimes you’ll still have to do the heavy lifting in refining your work, but it will all pay off with a thriving career, and improved communication between yourself and other people.

Get on it write away!

Writing is an often overlooked skill that plays a huge, though subtle, role in leveraging your career. In his article on Harvard Business Review, iFixit’s Kyle Wiens openly declared he wasn’t too keen on hiring people with poor grammar, precisely because they don’t make good employees. According to Wiens, these job seekers lack the critical thinking and orientation to detail that efficient workers and leaders possess.

In order to project the right image to your employer, make sure to be on top of your writing game immediately. Read the right things to absorb some of their influence, proofread your work extensively, and if you’re in a rush, spell check is always a safe option. Just make sure to scan and countercheck for any missed marks.

So what are you waiting for? Become a better writer, and increase your chances of moving up in your industry today.

For more tips to improve your job search and build a career, head over to our blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

Paige Donahue, guest writer

Paige Donahue, guest writer

Paige Donahue is an editor and blogger from Pennsylvania. She is a traveler and a collector of some sort – coins, comic books, and stories. You can connect with her via Twitter.

Posted May 07, 2016 by

4 ways college students can stay creative

Concentrated college student drawing picture at the college courtesy of Shutterstock.com

wavebreakmedia/Shutterstock.com

College is a place where students get prepared for their professional lives. it is because of this that every teacher and course instructor puts extra effort in training their students.

Due to late night study sessions, tons of assignments, and class presentations, students feel tired and lose their creativity.

As a result, college students experience a drastic decline to their overall academic results.

Being a student counselor and motivational speaker, it is my responsibility to guide students, and I simply love this job. I am extremely passionate in helping students through proven techniques and effective advice.

Similarly, I have narrowed down a couple of striking ways for students that will surely help them stay creative throughout their four-year degree programs.

I am pretty sure after implementing these ways mentioned below, students will be able stay ahead of the competition.

So, let’s get started…

1. Go out for a morning walk

Apart from hectic study schedules, college students should focus on their mental and physical health as well. This way, they will not only be able to boost their energy but will also get ready to take on any challenge quite easily.

For this, the best thing students can do is go for a morning walk without taking a single day off. Somehow, if there is no park available in their locality, then go to the gym.

The gym is an incredible place where students can get several types of machines to train their bodies and minds for rest of the day.

I strongly believe after practicing this habit for a few days that students will feel a positive change to their study approaches.

2. Create a study planner and stick to it

Studying without an actionable planner is like chasing a big total in the game of cricket without calculating the pitch condition.

If college students desperately want to attain tremendous results without compromising their creativity, then they definitely need to come up with a sensible study schedule. This way, students will understand their capabilities to maximize them accordingly.

To create a study planner, I would suggest students follow a very traditional approach. I actually mean instead of taking help from technology, grab a pen with a piece of paper and write down all their intended tasks on it.

It is truly a remarkable way that will keep students updated on their priority tasks.

3. Watch motivational videos and stories

If college students always want to keep themselves energized, they should watch as many motivational videos as possible. It is a golden trick that will enhance their thinking capabilities and make them stronger enough to deal with any type of situation.

Furthermore, if they love reading, then students should go to their nearest book shop and buy one or two famous motivational books. Once they start reading them, they will learn different styles and tricks to handle pressure.

4. Plot short intervals between study sessions

College students don’t need to treat themselves like robots. Instead, they should utilize their brains according to their strength and limitations.

A majority of students believe non-stop studying for a longer period of time can be the right strategy to accomplish the ultimate goal. But to be honest, it is not an appropriate way.

If students believe in quality, they should give their brains considerable breaks. When studying, make sure to take a couple of valuable short intervals to rejuvenate the mind.

If college students are studying to improve their creativity and knowledge, then the aforementioned ways will absolutely work for them.

For more tips to help college students, make your way to our blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

John Bishop, guest writer

John Bishop, guest writer

John Bishop is a Student Counselor and Motivational Speaker at an academic coaching “Dissertation Help”. He has been serving in this academic coaching firm for the last five years. He writes for numerous career related websites too.

Posted July 07, 2015 by

4 Amazing Ways to Relax Your Mind During Tough Academic Times

Man in casual clothes with headphones

Man in casual clothes with headphones. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

During tough academic times, when stress levels are high, it is important for students to use different tips and techniques that can help them relax their minds and give a break.

Giving your mind a good break to relax and feel refreshed during all the academic stress is absolutely crucial. Self-care that can induce mind relaxation techniques is absolutely crucial to your progress in the academic sector. If students continue to stress themselves without giving decent breaks in between, their minds can be exhausted and this can impact their overall performance during the term. Demonization, procrastination and frustration are all symptoms of a tired mind which needs a really good break. (more…)

Posted June 30, 2015 by

Strategic Ways For Students to Jump-start Their Career This Summer

Create Your Future card with a beach background

Create Your Future card with a beach background. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Summer is the time for students to relax and have fun. After all, a whole year of studying is not a joke. But if you want to secure a healthy career right after college, you have to spend your summer wisely before you lose the chance.

Planning for the future this early is great for your success. You’ll gain experience early and boost your confidence when you start a real job. Experience is the key in establishing a good foundation for your career. And the earlier you build it, the more competent you become, no matter what job or career path you take.

There are plenty of ways to establish your career. Here are some of the activities you can do this season: (more…)

Posted January 21, 2015 by

Skills recruiters look for Hedge Fund Job in Investment banking professionals

Hedge fund word cloud

Hedge fund word cloud. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

The transition from investment banking into the field of hedge funds is quite common and natural. Banking professionals choose to dive into the frantically competitive world of hedge funds because these jobs are challenging, highly rewarding and open the doors to a whole set of new opportunities in the future.

Prior experience in the banking sector is an added advantage and increases the chance of success in the hedge fund market. Here is a comprehensive guide to assess the experience, specialisation and other skills required to excel in this job profile. (more…)

Posted December 05, 2014 by

5 Tips for Finishing a Degree While You Work or Travel

College student reading outdoors lying in the grass

College student reading outdoors lying in the grass. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Not every high school student or young adult is set on acquiring a college diploma through the traditional four-year college experience, or right away. And with so many options to obtain and finish degrees at your disposal, you simply don’t have to. Whether it’s because you’re already working hard at your own start-up or you’ve just secured the internship of your dreams, you may find that an undergraduate or graduate degree is something you are only interested in pursuing on the side.

If you know a college degree is important, but you don’t want to take a break from the life you’re living to get it, here are five tips to finishing your college degree while you travel the world, intern for public radio, or slave away at your very own tech start-up. (more…)

Posted October 06, 2014 by

A State by State Look at Education in the United States

Even though education in the United States tends to be looked at on the whole, it is probably more fair to break it down by location to get a better idea of how students are doing in different parts of the country.  As a result, it may be easier to find answers to improve the quality of education students receive.  Here is a state by state look at education in the U.S. from the following infographic. (more…)

Posted July 21, 2014 by

Writing Cover Letters for Jobs, Recent College Graduates? 4 Things They Should Achieve

When writing cover letters for jobs, recent college graduates should make sure they achieve four things.  Find out what they are in the following post.

Every element, from top to bottom, of your cover letter is important. To impress the reader (and to get them to take longer than 6.2 seconds on your resume), though, there are four goals every cover letter you send must accomplish…

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Posted July 10, 2014 by

Make Online Learning Easier with These Tools

John Reiley (profile picture)

John Reiley

When you are working through online classes- whether for school or for business training- you will need the right tools to help you get through it and get the most out of it. If you are looking for some very useful and user friendly tools and apps for online learning, then you need to consider these tools. Many are free to use or have minimal fees and cost, making them perfect for any student or online learner. Check them out to see what they can do for you and your group! (more…)

Posted July 09, 2014 by

Recent College Graduates, Involved in Negotiation When it Comes to Jobs? Avoid These 7 Mistakes

Before accepting new jobs, recent college graduates may have the opportunity to negotiate for something.  When negotiating, they (and other job seekers) should avoid these seven mistakes discussed in the following post.

While even the word “negotiation” can evoke fear, stress and anxiety for many, the intent is quite simple: to discuss and ultimately agree on a deal.  Whether it’s a multimillion dollar contract or just deciding where to meet for lunch, life is rife with negotiations.  And, the negotiation process is

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