Set Yourself Up For Success

ask for a raise

How To Ask for a Raise

If you believe you should be paid more for the work you do and want to do something about it, you have two choices: find a new higher-paying job or ask for a raise.

Both of these job choices can introduce new anxieties, but they’re each a gateway to new opportunities. We can certainly help you find a new job—but if you like your current employer and believe you can grow there, it’s often a good idea to ask for a raise. After all, your employer may not know you’re dissatisfied with your current pay until you speak up.

In this article, we’ll provide a step-by-step guide on how to ask for a raise, plus tips and scripts to help you prepare your own request.

How To Ask for a Raise?

The following is a simple step-by-step guide you can follow as you prepare to ask your employer for a raise.

1. Pick the right time to ask

It’s not uncommon to want a raise. In fact, in a recent Indeed survey, only 19% of people were comfortable with their rate of pay. However, when you do ask for a raise, you need to carefully choose your timing. Ask yourself these questions as you’re identifying the right time to ask for a raise:

How is the company doing financially?

If the company isn’t doing well, this is not the time to ask for a raise. As an employee, you may be aware of the company’s financial health. You should look for warning signs, such as cutbacks in spending or layoffs. Check the news for stories about your employer or industry. Do company research and look at financial reports.

Even if the financial health of the company is good, this research will be useful to you when you talk to your manager.

What is your manager’s workload?

If you know your manager is under a lot of stress or focused on too many things right now, it may not be the time to ask for a raise. Paying attention to your manager’s moods and identifying how to help them demonstrates a level of maturity that will be useful to mention in your conversation about compensation.

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positive morning affirmations

Positive Morning Affirmations to Start Your Day

Starting your day with positive morning affirmations has a significant impact on how you interact with the rest of your day. Positive affirmations shimmer the light of positivity and healthy thoughts on your mind to look at the world with an empowered perspective.

Here are 110 positive morning affirmations for you:

Affirmations to Start Your Day

  1. I am feeling healthy and strong today.
  2. My body is a vessel of wellness.
  3. Today I will focus on what makes me feel good.
  4. I am a healthy and happy person.
  5. I know each day is a blessing and a gift.
  6. Today is going to be a really, really good day.
  7. I am excited to wake up today and experience this beautiful life that I am creating with my thoughts and visions.
  8. Today I align myself with freedom, growth, and joy.
  9. I am grateful that my life is so happy and successful.
  10. I believe in my ultimate potential.
  11. I greet this day with confidence and ease.
  12. I have all I need to make today a great day.
  13. I always see the good in others and in myself.
  14. I am self-sufficient, creative, and resilient.
  15. I love myself.
  16. I am the creator of my best reality.
  17. I am filled with gratitude and kindness for another wonderful day on this earth.
  18. I make the right choices all day using my inner wisdom.
  19. I am full of positive loving energy.
  20. Good things are happening.

Positive Morning Affirmations about Gratitude

  1. My heart is full of gratefulness.
  2. I am living in a state of gratitude.
  3. I am grateful now, and that is keeping the door open for more blessings.
  4. I am always finding something to appreciate around me.
  5. Things keep getting better and better, and I am so grateful.
  6. I am grateful for this moment.
  7. I am grateful for the abundance in my life.
  8. I am worthy of being loved, being happy, and doing what brings me joy.
  9. I am joyfully embracing each new day with gratitude.
  10. I am experiencing gratitude for everything I have in my life.
  11. I gratefully receive the lessons that each experience brings.
  12. I realize the gift of this precious human life.
  13. I am giving thanks for each exquisite moment.
  14. I am appreciating every blessing, no matter how small.
  15. I am grateful for my sense of gratitude.
  16. I am living my life with awareness and gratitude.
  17. I am finding gratitude and joy every day.
  18. I have so much to be thankful for.
  19. I welcome all of the ways the universe wants to bless me.
  20. With every moment, I am becoming more and more grateful.

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Thank You Email Subject Line

Crafting the Perfect Post-Interview Thank You Email Subject Line

You just wrapped an interview, it couldn’t have gone better, and now you really feel like you’re one step closer to this job. Next, you know you need to sit down and write a thank you email for your interview to show just how excited you are about this opportunity. The words basically pour out of you—but then you get stuck. What should you put for the subject line?

The Importance of Thank You Email Subject Lines

The subject line is the only part of your message that your interviewer will see in their inbox. A strong thank you email subject line can mean the difference between this person reading your thank you note or skipping over it—so it needs to be clear and informative, but also brief so it doesn’t get cut off (especially if they’re reading from their phone).

Three Tips for Subject Lines

Keep these in mind as you craft your subject line:

  1. Be obvious: There’s no need to clickbait your interviewer. They should know what’s in your email before they open it.
  2. Be clear: Interviewers may be talking with a lot of candidates in a short period or hiring for multiple positions. So include enough information that between your name and the subject line, your interviewer will remember who you are and why they interviewed you.
  3. Be concise: Since there are a number of different email platforms and ways of viewing inboxes (between devices, personal settings, and applications), there’s no hard and fast rule on how long your subject line should be. However, on an iPhone 13 Pro with text size at Apple’s middle setting, the Mail app starts cutting subject lines off after about 40 characters. So, try to keep your subject line as short as you can while still being informative and professional.

What to Include

To get your interviewer to read your thank you email, you can include one or more of the following in your subject line:

  • “Thank you” or “Thanks”
  • A brief mention of your meeting. For example, “Thank you for meeting with me” or “Thanks for our call” makes for an easy post-interview subject line.
  • The title of the open position. “Thank You – Sales Associate Interview” makes for a clear, concise email subject line.
  • The day or time of your interview. When possible, you should send your thank you note within the same day as your interview. If you’re able to be so timely, you can say something like “Thanks for chatting this morning” or “this afternoon” in the subject line.

Note that there’s no reason to include your first and last name in the subject line, as this info will appear in the sender field of your interviewer’s inbox.

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Me time

The Importance of “Me” Time

In a world that is always buzzing, it seems nearly impossible to schedule time for ourselves. There is a revolving door of reasons to push “me” time until tomorrow and when tomorrow becomes today the story stays the same. Knowing why, how, and when to schedule time for yourself is the spark that ignites the fire when it comes to self-care and living out the best version of yourself.

The Advantages of “Me” Time

The importance of positive self-talk is put on a pedestal when it comes to building self-confidence but what about the good ol’ “actions speak louder than words”? Choosing to set aside time “just for me” sends a positive message, through action, to our insides. This action proclaims “I matter”, “I’m worth it” and “I am a priority”. When we choose “me” time we give ourselves a free space to try new things, fall in love with a hobby, and really find what makes us come alive.

Taking care of ourselves not only improves our relationship with ourselves but with others too. When our bodies and brains are always running it’s easy to become overwhelmed with life. This in turn causes our moods to fluctuate more quickly. We become easily frustrated while having less control over our reactions. Regular, uninterrupted “me” time helps our busy brains to unplug and unwind. In doing so we relieve stress which helps us sleep better, gives us more control over our moods, increases our patience level, and helps us to live in the moment. All of these benefits fill us up on the inside and when we are full we can pour into the things that matter most to us, including our relationships. “Me” time is our magic reset button.

Scheduling “You” Time

This is not just another responsibility to check off our list. “Me” time is something to recharge you. It is simply choosing to use the time we already have a bit more mindfully. Me time can be spent and scheduled in several ways but there are a few hacks to balance any schedule.

First things first, learn to say no. It is our nature to be social and say yes to almost every opportunity that comes our way but it also leads to an overcommitted schedule. When we are overcommitted we aren’t able to give one hundred percent of ourselves to who we are with or where we are. Saying no, helps us regain the balance we need in our lives.

Start with the big picture; your calendar. Having an overall view of your schedule will help you discern when to say no. Add in all commitments for the month in each week: work, kids activities, grocery shopping days, etc. Next, choose and add in “blocks” a.k.a at least two nights during the week with zero plans after 6 pm along with one weekend day or night block. Try to schedule all of the “opportunities” that come up outside of these while politely responding with a “no” to anything conflicting with the blocks you have chosen. Finally, pencil in some me time into the pre-set blocks, whether it be twenty minutes or three hours you will be thankful later. As a rule of thumb, if our schedule is consistently set up in this way we’re likely to have balance all month long.

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employee recognition and appreciation

A MUST HAVE List of Employee Recognition and Appreciation Ideas

Organizations need to carefully tailor their employee recognition and appreciation efforts and make them meaningful to their employees. Why? Everyone likes to be recognized for their efforts.

Think back to the last time someone expressed appreciation for your work — it stuck in your mind and meant something, didn’t it? But employee recognition is not just about making people feel good. It has a significant impact on key business metrics, including engagement, retention, and productivity. Data indicates that “lack of recognition” is the third most common reason employees leave their job, and 26% of employees feel that being undervalued and underappreciated is the highest barrier to engagement.

Leadership to Employee Appreciation Ideas

Recognition from leadership boosts employee morale and encourages positive behavior by setting an example. 58% of employees say their manager relationship would improve with more recognition, but 30% of respondents feel recognition was “not really” or “not at all” valued by leadership. And recognition from leadership above the supervisor levels matters even more: 44% of employees value recognition from higher levels of leadership the most.

To become recognition champions, leaders from the C-suite down should prioritize recognition by following these recommendations:

  1. Serve as an example by recognizing employees frequently.
  2. Publicly recognize team members by hosting company-wide meetings.
  3. Advocate for a culture of recognition in your daily interactions and in meetings with leadership.
  4. Practice both monetary and social recognition.
  5. Take advantage of one-click recognitions so that no leader can use the excuse that they’re “too busy” to recognize employees.

Recognition from leadership is especially crucial in times of difficulty. Words of positivity, support, and appreciation for team efforts help employees focus on moving forward.

Company Culture Employee Recognition and Appreciation Ideas

A positive organizational culture has a significant impact on business results and is critical to attracting top talent, and recognition is the foundation that great company cultures are built on. According to Brandon Hall Group’s recent report, organizations that rate their culture of recognition highly are:

  • 3x more likely to see increased employee retention
  • 5x more likely to see increased employee engagement
  • 2.25x more likely to give frequent recognition
  • 79% more likely to give their employer brand a high rating

To start incorporating recognition into your culture, make peer-to-peer, team, manager, and leadership recognition a regular occurrence. The Brandon Hall Group found that companies that recognize employees multiple times a month are 41% more likely to see increased employee retention and 34% more likely to see increased engagement.

You should also explicitly and clearly tie recognition to specific positive behaviors, and especially those that reflect company values. Employees are more likely to repeat actions they’re recognized for, so this is one of the most effective ways to shape your culture.

Ideas For Peer-To-Peer Recognition

Recognition from colleagues is just as important as being recognized by leadership. Peer-to-peer recognition builds employee engagement and helps establish a positive company culture. In fact, research shows that peer-to-peer recognition can boost employee performance by as much as 14%. It also fosters a sense of connection, belonging, and well-being. Here are some ideas for incorporating peer-to-peer recognition into the workplace:

  • Ensure that all employees can participate in your recognition program whether they’re on the move, in office, or working remotely.
  • Include peer participation in employee recognition celebrations. Whether its a service anniversary or personal achievement, encourage peers to comment and be a part of the event. And consider digital celebration cards that all team members can sign and customize with a special message of appreciation.
  • Make it easy for employees to recognize a peer for good work or simply living the company’s values.

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find your passion

How to Find Your Passion

One common piece of advice you might get when looking for a job is to “find your passion.” Following the work, ideas, and projects that make you feel fulfilled and motivated can help lead you to jobs you will enjoy and succeed in. While the idea is simple enough, it can still take some careful consideration to identify and find your passion in life.

Define Passion

A passion is “a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object or concept,” according to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary. When you practice your passions, you might feel content and relaxed. As a professional, pursuing your passions as a career can bring you greater fulfillment in the contributions you make in the workplace. You may feel inclined to pursue your passions even if you don’t have a lot of free time.

Because passions are activities or ideas that inspire you, then you could consider making a career out of them. Passions can vary widely depending on your interests or values. Here are some examples of passions that you could have:

  • Teaching
  • Animal welfare
  • Environmental issues
  • Playing the guitar
  • Cooking
  • Learning a language
  • Writing a book

The Difference Between Passions and Hobbies

A hobby is an activity that you enjoy doing when you have personal time, while a passion is a goal or activity that motivates you. Sometimes hobbies can become passions, and passions can become hobbies.

Find Your Passion

The best way to identify what you’re passionate about is to pay attention to the daily tasks and activities that make you feel excited, motivated, or fulfilled. Here are 15 ways you can identify your passions in your day-to-day life:

1. Notice The High Points in Your Day

There might be a certain day of the week or time of the day you look forward to for some reason. Maybe it’s a specific meeting, task or time you’ve set aside. You might also notice certain surprises or unexpected times that end up being the best part of your day. Pay attention to both seemingly significant and insignificant things that you would consider to be the peak of your day.

While many of these high points may happen during work, you may notice that your high points occur outside the workplace in the time you have for yourself, friends and family. Making note of where and with whom your high points take place will bring you one step closer to knowing whether your passions are related to your career or other parts of life.

2. Become Aware of What You Spend Your Time and Money On

We tend to focus our resources on things that are meaningful to us, including time and money. Look at your credit card bill or bank statements and see if there are any themes. Look at the topics of books, magazines, films or podcasts you consume. Take note of how you are spending your free time and what activities bring you joy.

Finally, recognize if there is a particular genre, subject or theme that your hobbies and interests have in common. The interests that have remained with you through the years may be more related to a passion versus a newly emerged interest.

3. What Topics do You Love to Teach or Talk About

Consider your interactions with others. What types of conversations do you enjoy the most? Do you find yourself particularly animated when talking about a specific subject? It might also be helpful to consider if there are any tasks or topics you tend to teach others about. These are often the things we find most important to us.

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Recruitment ROI

Why Recruitment ROI is Crucial

Recruiting great talent is one of the keys to a successful business. To that end, making sure you’re getting the most for your recruiting dollars — without spending too much of your budget — should be a high priority. Ideally, you’re getting the best recruitment ROI (return on your investment).

Recruitment budgeting comes with challenges, from balancing spending against performance to navigating the ups and downs of the job market.

Plus, recruitment budgeting can be tough in this economic climate, where inflation is a factor and the labor market is tricky. Strikes have affected employers in manufacturing and information, and labor shortages are ongoing in healthcare.

Tracking Your Recruitment ROI is Crucial

The more you know about how your recruiting dollars are performing, the more efficiently you can hire great people.

Data points can help inform your decisions. How long is it taking to fill your roles, from start to finish? How far into the process are you finding the candidates you end up hiring? How many people are applying to your postings?

The more you can work with data to gauge the results you’re achieving with your recruiting dollars, the more informed you’ll be when you make future decisions.

Optimize for Recruitment

One cost-effective strategy to attract talent is to use your website as an always-on recruiting tool. When your site clearly reflects your company culture and brand, candidates who are attracted to your message will stick around.

Showcase your company strengths. If you’ve got diverse talent, highlight it. If you’ve got a great benefits program, make sure candidates can find information on it. The more you can sell the experience of working for your firm, the more you’ll attract passive candidates.

Talent Pipelining

Talent pipelining is the practice of keeping qualified potential job candidates in the wings, so to speak, so when an opportunity arises, you can move fast. This shrinks your time-to-fill and saves money overall, since you’re not starting from scratch for every search.

You can also use talent pipelining to help you develop a more diverse workforce. By building relationships ahead of time with people and organizations from a variety of backgrounds, you’ll be in a position to proactively hire diverse talent from your pools of existing contacts.

For best results, tune in to candidate needs — if you aren’t offering what candidates are looking for, it won’t matter who’s in your pipeline. Use hiring tools that flag you when candidates in the system are active (and potentially looking for work). And engage workers via text and email tools that meet them where they are.

Have more questions about recruiting? Check out the services we offer!

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travel while working remotely

Looking to Travel While Working Remotely? START HERE!

One of the best parts about being able to travel while working remotely is you can work anywhere you can bring your laptop and find a secure internet connection. This superpower allows remote employees to travel more and digital nomads to live like locals in new locales for as long as they please. 

Though the pandemic may have put a damper on this perk over the last few years, more people are working remotely now and eager to start traveling again.

The only downside? If you’re not prepared to work remotely while traveling, you could set yourself up for a stressful getaway.

That’s why we’re sharing everything you need to know about working remotely and traveling like a pro in this guide. But before you start looking for cheap flights, let’s start with WHY it’s important to plan.

Why You Need a Plan

Whether you’re taking a bucket list vacation or going out of town unexpectedly, it can be challenging to work remotely while traveling. 

You won’t have the cues of your regular routine and workspace to get you in the productive zone. And the novelty of a new destination and all its distractions can easily tank your ability to focus. That’s why it’s best to create a game plan before leaving. 

Sure, you may be tempted to wing it and take a relaxed approach to your time away. But if you don’t prepare for all the nuances of travel and work ahead of time, you may not get to do as much sightseeing, parasailing, or feasting as you’d like.

Seven Tips to Travel While Working Remotely

Follow these seven tips, and you’ll be able to make the most of your work day and maximize your time off:

1. Decide If You’ll Be Checking In or Checking Out

Unlimited vacation days are one of the best company benefits every remote team should get. But this time off might come with a few caveats for checking in, especially if you’ll be traveling for a while.

So look over your company’s work policy to see what’s expected of you. Speak with your managers to see how many hours you’ll need to clock in, how often you’ll need to touch base, how you’ll manage your remote team, etc.

Working this out ahead of time lets you flex your flexibility, adaptability, and resourcefulness, all transferable skills that make you look like a pro.

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why do you want to work here

Prepping for the “Why Do You Want to Work Here?” Question

All right, you’re well underway in your search for a new job, and you even have an interview (or a few) on your calendar. As you’re preparing for your interview, you think of one question you just know will come up: “Why do you want to work here?” Hopefully you’re interviewing with a company that has a mission you believe in, but if not, it’s wise to have a good answer for this question before you sit down with a hiring manager. So, what’s the best way to answer “Why do you want to work here?” Keep reading! I’ll share a few tips and scripts to set you up for success when it’s time for you to answer this common interview question.

The Reason Behind “Why Do You Want to Work Here?”

When you’re preparing for a job interview, no matter what the company does, you can expect a few of the same questions. Aside from the classic “Tell me about yourself?” question, another predictable question you’ll hear during an interview is, “Why are you interested in this position?” Employers ask this to find out how much you really know about the company and position and to see if you’d be a good, long-term fit—for the culture and for the position. They’re looking for the right fit just as much as you are, and they want to offer a job and invest in hiring someone who’s prepared and ready to take the reins. They’re also curious about how well you explain yourself and the connections you see between your top skills and passions and what the company needs from its team.

How to Answer “Why Do You Want to Work Here?”

This is one of the most popular interview questions, which is good news because you know it’s coming. You can research and prepare a great answer ahead of time—one that will set you apart from other job seekers and position you as an excellent candidate for the role.

So, when you’re planning how to answer “Why do you want to work here?” keep these points in mind:

1. Talk About the Company’s Mission

It’s easy enough to explain why you’re looking for a new job, but if you can explain why you’re excited about the company’s mission, you have a better chance of standing out in the interview process. Research the company’s mission and vision statements on their website for more information.

2. Be Honest About What You’re Looking For

But not too honest. You don’t want to bash your old company and use this new opportunity as an escape hatch. Instead, explain how this new role could be a great fit for your long-term career goals. Keep it positive. Review the job description and see how your skills and goals match up with what they’re looking for.

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stuck in your career

Feeling Stuck In Your Career? Let’s Change That.

According to a study by Oracle, more than 75% of people feel “stuck” personally and professionally. There are a wide variety of reasons you might feel stuck in your career. Maybe you’ve worked in the technology industry for years when you don’t even have a passion for it. Or you’ve remained at the same company for decades because the pay and benefits are great, yet the work doesn’t energize you. As time goes on, those “golden handcuffs” slowly tighten. You may even feel like something is missing or holding you back from having greater satisfaction. If you’ve been struggling with the feeling of being stuck in your career for a while, it’s a sign that it’s time to do something about it.

Yet, change is always difficult, even if it’s for the better. That’s because humans don’t like uncertainty. We’re hardwired for survival and prefer to know what’s coming next. Over time, too much uncertainty causes anxiety and eventually turns into full-blown fear. But uncertainty can be redefined to work in your favor. As Eckhart Tolle wrote in his book, A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose, “If uncertainty is unacceptable to you, it turns into fear. If it is perfectly acceptable, it turns into increased aliveness, alertness, and creativity.”

Stop Feeling Stuck in Your Career

You need to make a critical decision. Do you want to settle for the life you have now or take action to create the life you deserve? If you’re ready to break free, here are some ways to stop feeling stuck in your career.

Gain Some Perspective

One of the first things you should do is determine why you feel stuck in your career. Is it because you always seem to be passed over for a promotion? Or maybe your salary and benefits are so attractive that you find it hard to leave—even though you don’t feel challenged. Whatever the case, do some soul-searching, so you understand what is potentially lacking in your life.

Understand Your Values

People are happier when their value system aligns with their careers. In fact, job satisfaction is determined more by how your values align with your work environment than by any other factor. Therefore, it is important to analyze your work values to clarify your priorities.

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