Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - doha

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 6
Tips and tricks for getting PMP Certified

 After a few months of studying, I've got my Project Management Professional (PMP) certification [1] in April this year. Although, at the beginning, the process for applying for the certification seemed extremely complicated, I didn't find it to be that hard. Since there don't seem to be many blogs on the Internet giving information about the actual experience of getting a PMP certification, I would like to share with you a few tips and tricks from my own experience. Hopefully, you will find them useful.

Ask yourself: What's in it for You?

First of all, before you even consider giving the PMP exam, I suggest that you think very well about why you want to get certified. Make sure you are very clear what the actual benefits of getting this certification are . For some guidance you can find out more about some common misconceptions in our article called What You Will NOT Earn From a PMP Certification [2]. Although getting certified is not hard, it does require a lot of time and dedication for studying, which, if you have a full-time job, is harder to come across.

Some good reasons to make you consider this certification are as follows:

You already have PM experience on medium-large sized projects, you are following the Project Management Institute (PMI) framework (partially and completely) and you want formal acknowledgment of your experience and skills, which is recognized by companies all over the world;

You don't have lots of experience in running medium or large sized projects and you want to learn more about the PMI framework so that it helps you be a better project manager. If you are truly inexperienced in project management, I would recommend considering the CAPM certification [3] first, which teaches you the basics about the framework and processes.

Steps to Getting the PMP Certification

Before moving forward, take the time to carefully read the requirements [1] and the PMP Handbook [4]. They will give you complete information about the project experience you must have, the process of submitting for the exam, payment information, etc.

If you are meeting the requirements, the steps to get the certification are:

    1. Getting registered on-line to the PMI website & filling in your experience information;
    2. Payment and confirmation of your eligibility to take the exam/or be audited;
    3. Study time;
    4. Taking the actual exam.

After you take the actual certification, the work does not stop because you have to continue being an active project manager, running projects, teaching others about project management and improving yourself by going to trainings, conferences, workshops, etc. All this activity, you will have o report on the PMI website [5]. Again, more info about this will be found in the PMP Handbook [4]. So do take the time to read it.

Tips for the Subscription Process

When subscribing to the exam, do consider these tips:

The 3 or 5 years worth of experience refer to actual time spent of projects. If, during 3 months you worked on 3 parallel projects, the actual work experience is 3 months. It is not 3 projects multiplied by 3 months. When reporting work hours spent on multiple parallel projects, be careful to report reality, as in, not working on average more than 8 hours/day. This might sound logical but it is definitely worth mentioning.

 While specifying the experience, don't get scared by the level of information required. Although you probably did not keep these kind of records during your projects, try to give a rough & realistic estimate. You surely know the start/end dates of your projects and you can estimate roughly how much effort you've spent on them. It is not necessary to be very exact. 80/20 estimations are just fine: ;
Make sure that your work experience does not account for more than 150h per month. During a month you are also doing other tasks, go on holidays, lunch breaks etc;

 Try to reflect the reality. The reality might be that you spent 50% of the time in executing and no time closing the project. That is OK because you were either learning then to be a project manager or were involved in different stages of the project. Therefore don't lie during the subscription process.

Tips for Studying to Get the Certification

When studying for the exam, consider these tips:

 Look at studying as if you are running a project - the subjects you will have to cover are quite large and, if you have finished your university studies some time ago, you will probably no longer have the same speed of studying as when you were a student. Study the first chapter and measure how long it takes. This is one of the easiest chapters so add 20% more time for the others, make a learning plan, set deadlines and keep tracking yourself;

Keep the studying condensed in a couple of months at most - if you spread your learning thin, across a whole year, you will forget where you started from. Create a tight schedule for you and create the mindset of finishing the PMP certification 'project' in a couple of months (preferably 3 or 4).

Choose the study materials wisely - note that the PMBOK Guide from PMI [6] is very dry reading and hard to use for the learning process. It works more as a reference guide you consult as needed. There are two good books you can use for the preparation, both filled with the necessary theory and exercises: PMP Exam Prep: Rapid Learning to Pass PMI's PMP Exam-On Your First Try! [7] by Rita Mulcahy and Head First PMP: A Brain-Friendly Guide to Passing the Project Management Professional Exam [8] by Jennifer Greene and Andrew Stellman. If you use any of these books together with the PMBOK Guide, it is more than enough. Also, don't pick more than 1 book to study from. The authors have very different styles and it will just frustrate you when trying to accomodate to more than one. To help you more on this subject, we will also publish some reviews of these books, so that you know which works best for your learning style.

Try alternative studying methods - one of the most effective ways to study is a study group. This can help you to keep the pace of studying. If your company does not organize such groups, you can find them also on LinkedIn groups [9] and other sites. I also found CBT Nuggets [10] very effective, these are video guides with very good quality.

Exercise, Exercise, Exercise - reserve the time to do the exercises for PMP Exam Prep after each chapter. Both books we recommend have lots of exercises, so don't skip them. When done reading all the materials, you can try also online test exams such as the one offered by PM Study [11]. A good score is anything above 70%. If you get this on average for all chapters, then you can go to the actual exam with confidence that you will pass.
Don't get frustrated - there is also A LOT of theoretical knowledge you will have to learn about tools, besides the framework. Even if you might not use some of them, you still need to learn what they are and when they are used. There is lots of theory to learn but most of it makes sense when you try to connect it to real projects, so it is not as bad as it looks. Just keep learning.
 Don't be scared - the exam is actually MUCH easier than the study materials from Rita Mulcahy's book. If you learn from this book and you get 70% of the questions right, you will pass the actual exam. The truly hard part about the PMP exam is sticking till the end, being disciplined and covering all the theory & exercises.

Tips for the Certification Exam

When actually taking the exam, consider these tips:

Be prepared to focus for 4 hours - the exam will require a lot of concentration from your side and most probably you will need all the hours allotted to it. Therefore, do try a full practice exam before going into the real one. If you manage to focus for the whole 400 questions you are in great shape.

Eliminate the bad answers to find the right one - even though you don't know the right answer to a question, try to find it by eliminating the less probable ones. In most cases you can easily eliminate two answers, leaving you with only two options to choose from. And in that case you got a 50% chance of getting it right instead of 25%.

 Don't think too much - usually, your first answer is the right one. When in doubt, go with your instinct and don't over-analyze the question and the answers.

Go with the mindset that you will pass - this will help you to be calm and relaxed. If you've got a bit of experience and you went through all the theory and exercises, you WILL pass.

When Done - Celebrate!

After you are done with the preparation, have taken the exam and received the PASS notification, don't forget to celebrate! You surely deserve it.

I'm hoping these tips will help you. If you have any questions, I would be happy to answer. Also I am welcoming other PMPs who would like to post their comments here. Please help us to build a library of tips.

Related content:

What You Will NOT Earn From a PMP Certification [2]
Head First PMP, 2nd Edition - Review based on Personal Experience [12]
The Prince2 Certification in a Nutshell [13]


SOURCE : Nick Chavchanidze, NCARB, Linked In

6 Essential Traits of Good Character | Success as a leader is built on the foundation of character

The following are what I believe to be the basics of good character. Miss one of these, and you’ll find a weak link in your character—one that might be your leadership’s undoing.

1. Integrity:

Integrity is a good catchword that is similar to character but provides us with a different way of looking at the ideas of character. The root of integrity means “whole” or “undivided,” and that’s a terrific way to help us understand what integrity is—an undivided life. For example, you don’t act one way in one situation and another in a different situation. There is integrity and wholeness to your life. Living this way will build trust in your followers. Another use of the word integrity that provides insight for us is when the word is used in regard to a physical structure. A wall or a building that is strong and has no cracks is said to have integrity. The same could be said for great leaders.

2. Honesty:

It is regularly said that honesty is the best policy, but I would add that honesty is the only policy for great leaders. Think about it. Why do people hedge the truth? Usually for a few basic reasons: They are either afraid of the ramifications or they are trying to hide something. Either way, a lack of honesty results in the fact that you destroy the trust of those who follow you. Even if you tell them the truth but they know you have lied to others, it will destroy the trust you had with them. They find themselves thinking, “If he will lie to them, will he lie to me?”

I’ve never understood what people hope to accomplish by being dishonest. Eventually people come to know that you’re not honest in your dealings, and that is what you become known for. Your reputation is what your leadership is based on, though. When we’re honest and live transparently before our followers, they’re able to see us for who we are and make solid decisions to follow.

3. Loyalty:

People of good character are loyal people. They have a “stick-to-it” attitude when it comes to others. Anybody who knows human nature knows that people fail. It’s just a matter of time, no matter how talented someone is. A person of good character stays with their friends even in the downtimes. Anyone can be friends with others when times are good. People of good character stay with their friends when they need them most.

How this translates into making you a good leader is this: People want to follow a leader who will stretch them beyond where they are now, but who’ll also allow them to try—and to fail. When we are loyal to our followers, they’ll be loyal to us and make every effort to succeed on our behalf and on behalf of the organization. There are few things that strengthen the leader-follower bond more than when a leader shows loyalty to a follower in need.

4. Self-Sacrifice:

Lee Iacocca became a legend when he said he’d bring Chrysler back from the brink of bankruptcy and would take only a dollar a year in pay. This was a classic example of a leader sacrificing for the followers. It also showed his understanding of and empathizing with the average line worker. As a result, the workers of Chrysler rewarded him with an incredible following as they built Chrysler into one of the world’s leading car companies.

What is it about self-sacrifice that breeds followers? Followers don’t mind putting in the hard work. They don’t even mind a leader making more money or reaping benefits from their work. What followers do mind, though, is when the leader is using them for personal gain. People of good character don’t use other people, period. So when a leader shows sacrifice of personal gain, it says to the followers that they are willing to come alongside of them—and followers reward that almost universally. A person of good character shows that they can give up personal gain for the good of the whole.

5. Accountability:

People of good character don’t mind accountability. In fact, they welcome it. This is the act of allowing others to have a say in your life, to speak to you straight about your life and conduct. The brutal truth is that we have blind spots and need other people to be in close to us so we can advance down the road of success. The need for accountability doesn’t prove lack of character. Rather, it proves the presence of character. G.K. Chesterton said, “Original sin is the only philosophy empirically validated by 3,500 years of human history.” The person of good character knows this and invites others to speak into their life.

Followers grow tired of leaders who will have nothing to do with accountability. They don’t mind leaders who make mistakes, but they do mind leaders who don’t take responsibility for their mistakes by being accountable. When we allow ourselves to be held accountable, our followers know that we are serious about keeping our own house in order, and thus will do a good job in leading the rest of the organization.

6. Self-Control:

The ability to make decisions—good decisions—about what we will and will not do with our actions is at the core of what we become in regard to our character. There will be plenty of options to participate in things that are not moral. Everybody has temptations, but a person of good character knows to exercise self-control—literal control over their choices. When people don’t exercise self-control, they sabotage their ability to lead. People lose respect for them and will follow less, if at all. Self-control is the ability to choose to do the things we should, and to refrain from doing the things we shouldn’t. When we exhibit self-control, we again build trust in our followers. They respect us and want to follow us.

By Jim Rohn

12 Uncomfortable Things That Will Make You More Successful

In a truly beautiful letter to his daughter Yolande, Sociologist W.E.B. Du Bois extolled the virtues of being uncomfortable.

Yolande was headed to a new school halfway around the world from the neighborhood and people she knew. It was years before women had the right to vote, and decades before the Civil Rights Movement.

Du Bois knew she would have more than a few fish-out-of-water moments. Instead of trying to shield her from them, he asked her to revel in them:

    Don’t shrink from new experiences and custom. Take the cold bath bravely. Enter into the spirit of your big bed-room. Enjoy what is and not pine for what is not. Read some good, heavy, serious books just for discipline: Take yourself in hand and master yourself. Make yourself do unpleasant things, so as to gain the upper hand of your soul. Above all remember: your father loves you and believes in you and expects you to be a wonderful woman.

I am no W.E.B. Du Bois. I have neither his fortitude nor his stunning way with words. What I do have, however, is a small history of uncomfortable experiences that have made me stronger, and an endless sea of animated GIFs through which to illustrate those experiences.

Here are a handful of uncomfortable situations in which you should take De Bois’ advice and “Take the cold bath bravely.” You’ll be better off as a result.

Brace yourself. It’s about to get awkward.
1) Learning to Take a Compliment

Tell me if this sounds familiar: You work exceedingly hard. You’ve honed your skills. You know when you’ve done great work and take a quiet pride in it. And yet, the moment someone verbalizes it in the form of a compliment you can’t seem to string two words together. Instead, you revert into one of the following:

    The babbling-response.
    The self-deprecating response.
    The total and complete blackout.

That nonsense has to stop. Here’s how to take a compliment:

    Realize that someone is paying you a compliment.
    Let them finish.
    Seriously, let them finish.
    Take a breath.
    Smile and say “Thank you. That’s really good to hear.”
    Move on in the conversation. Don’t over-explain. Don’t undercut yourself. Just thank them sincerely and move on with a question about how their work is going.

Why is this so hard? According to a study by Acknowledgment Works, nearly 70% of people associate embarrassment or discomfort with the process of being recognized. Sometimes, this response is caused by the dissonance we feel when someone contradicts our own self-doubt.

But that doesn’t explain why people who are genuinely proud of themselves still balk at hearing that same praise from others. For those people, it often comes down to a learned-response. In other words, you are awkward when you receive compliments because I am awkward when I receive compliments — or, if not me, then your mom; your co-workers; your icons. We’re all making each other squirm.

One way to turn that discomfort on its head is to realize that the compliment has more to do with the person giving it than with you. “When someone is complimenting you, they are sharing how your actions or behaviors impacted them,” explains Business Psychologist Mark Goulston. “They are not asking if you agree.” So don’t rob them of that moment.

2) Public Speaking

You knew this one was coming, right? Fear of public speaking is so common it has its own phobia name: Glossophobia.

Now, I don’t think I need to go into the reasons behind this particular juggernaut of discomfort. We’ve all been there. Having that many eyes and ears on you is stressful. It makes you feel as though any mistake or imperfection will be amplified a thousand times. I’m also certain you realize how compelling a good public speaker can be, and how much it can advance your ability to lead and inspire.

So all that leaves is the classic glossophobia question: How do you get over it? The answer is a mix of substantial and superficial changes.
Know the essential points.

Do not attempt to memorize your speeches. Instead, memorize your key points and your pivot lines. Pivot lines are the sentences that will move you from one key point to another. They act as navigational guides for your audience and a momentary comfort zone for you. Use these pivot lines to reset, take a breath, and move to your next key point.
Understand that everyone wants you to succeed.

You are not going into battle. You are not facing a firing squad. These people you are talking to are all decent, interested folks. Many of whom also suffer from glossophobia. So know they are friendly, and talk to them like it.
Fake it.

For this last point, I turn to Harvard Associate Professor Amy Cuddy. She is a brilliant researcher and a self-proclaimed introvert who noticed something fascinatingly simple about skilled public speakers: They all looked comfortable, and they all appeared to be in command — even if that appearance was all a big ruse.

So she studied what happens to people’s mindset when they stood up straight, casually used the space around them, and otherwise “power-posed.” Turns out the physical act of power-posing can send biological triggers to your brain to reduce cortisol levels and increase testosterone, calming you down and empowering you simultaneously.

3) Working With Data

If you don’t take to math easily, then delving into data can be intimidating. But learning to use data to find opportunities and underscore your points is a game-changer in your career.

The trick to mastering data is to learn it in context. Start by getting to know the core metrics that reflect your work. Play with spreadsheets at the close of a month. Learn to recognize trends. Alter the data to see how moving one metric would influence the others. The more time you spend with the data the more natural interpreting it will become. Once you’ve done that, you can dig into the tougher stuff. Here are a couple of resources to get you started:

    How to Use Excel: Essential Training for Data-Driven Marketing: A downloadable resource that includes videos, instructions for how to do specific things in Excel, and advice for using Excel to build reports.
    14 Simple Excel Shortcuts, Tip & Tricks: A blog post with step-by-step instructions for creating pivot tables, filters, conditional formatting, VLOOKUPs, and more. Harry Potter references and GIFs included.
    10 Excel Tips and Tricks Every Marketer Should Know: A blog post teaching you how to create a histogram and what exactly regression analysis entails. It’s a good time for all.
    Data Smart: A book by Data Scientist John Foreman, who is a wizard at taking the complex and putting into approachable and even entertaining terms. While this book isn’t exactly an easy read, I can assure you it’s worth every minute invested.

4) Waking Up Early

It’s exhausting, this modern life. While it may seem like you should squeeze as many extra minutes of sleep out of the morning as possible, the opposite is usually true. Your energy, focus and mental capacity are at their highest during the morning hours and proceed to wane throughout the rest of the day.

Take advantage of that time before breakfast when the chaos of the day has yet to set in. For most people, waking up early is a learned practice.

First, make sure you’re cognizant enough to make the decision. Putting your alarm clock right next to your pillow is bound to result in you hitting snooze from a dazed state. You can’t be expected to make smart choices while you’re still dreaming. In addition, waking up early needs to become a pleasant experience. So if the thought of going straight from your warm bed to a shower or treadmill seems abrupt, then don’t do it. Instead, move from your bed to the cozy corner chair in your living room and read for a bit with a mug of coffee. What you do early on doesn’t matter, what matters is that you use the time in productive ways. (Read this blog post for more tips on becoming a morning person.)

5) Taking Critical Feedback

This one stings sometimes, but it’s important. Learning to hear criticism without turning your back to it can be one of the most fortifying achievements of your career.

Think of critical feedback as a cheat sheet. In giving you direct feedback, your manager or colleague is giving you a shortcut — your own personal konami code — to becoming better at your job.

Sometimes, even with the best intentions, taking feedback well can be a struggle. Your impulse will be to protect yourself; to get defensive, or stop listening. So, be conscious of it. Much like accepting a compliment, take a breath when you realize critical feedback is coming your way. Listen to it all without interruption. Write down what you can. Then, ask questions to make sure you’re interpreting it right.

6) Giving Critical Feedback

The only thing worse than taking critical feedback is giving it. I’ve written about this before: Whether you’re a manager or a friend, feedback is an opportunity to help someone get better. Don’t waste it. Good coaches give feedback directly and with respect. Don’t try to soften the blow or talk around the feedback. Doing so may make you feel better but it will only serve to confuse them.

If you’re struggling to be direct, try one clear line followed by detail. For example, “John, what you’re doing isn’t working. Let’s talk through why…”

In addition, feedback is always most constructive if accompanied by recent concrete examples. Telling someone they have a bad attitude isn’t helpful — it’s far better to point to a precise moment in which that bad attitude showed up, and then explain how moments like that can become detrimental in aggregate. Ultimately, knowing how to improve is as important as knowing what to improve. The person receiving the feedback should leave the conversation feeling empowered to change, not broken down. (Here are some more tips on how to give negative feedback without sounding like a jerk.)

7) Fighting Through Conflict

You know what’s more uncomfortable than fighting through a conflict with someone? Settling for an uninspired compromise, and then gossiping about that person over drinks with your coworkers. That’s WAY more comfortable than conflict. (Not to mention, way less productive.)

There are two ways conflict negotiations get botched: Either one side gives in too easily, or both sides are too inflexible to make resolution possible. The cleanest way through conflict is to try to discover what’s motivating the other person. Comment trolls aside, it’s pretty rare for someone to be argumentative for no good reason. Discovering the reason will help you find a better route to solving the conflict. That’s why your best asset in settling conflict is a collection of genuine questions and a patient ear to hear the answers.

8) Exercising

I keep waiting for the study that says that exercise isn’t all its cracked up to be. It’s fair to say that study isn’t coming. Not only is exercise good for your physical health, the ties between exercise and mental capacity are becoming undeniable. (Thanks, science.)

If you like working out, skip right ahead. If you don’t, here are the only things I’ve found to work.
Find your reason.

Maybe you want to lose weight. Maybe it helps you think more clearly. Maybe you have three kids, a constantly buzzing phone, and a dog all demanding your attention and exercise is your only chance to be alone. The reasons don’t matter. Just find the one that feels authentic for you and use it.
Make the time.

Treat exercise like you treat showering. It’s just something you do; a non-negotiable daily ritual. (Psst … here are 10 little ways to sneak in exercise at work.)
Get over it.

I used to hear about “runners’ highs,” a sort of delusion that sets in after you’ve done it enough that actually makes you believe jogging is fun. That may be the case for some people. It never happened for me, and wanting to like running made it easy to give up when I ultimately didn’t. Du Bois’ advice is worth hearing again here: “Make yourself do unpleasant things, so as to gain the upper hand of your soul.”
Find your genre.

The softer alternative to the above point is to find the exercise format that you hate least. If a crowded gym makes you want to run for the hills, then work out at home or outside on your own. If you find jogging boring, join a class or sports league. Work at it — it’s worth it.

9) Unplugging

I love the internet. And smartphones? They’re like personal escape hatches that you carry with you all the time. But maybe “all the time” is not such a good idea.

According to a TIME poll of more than 5,000 people, 84% of respondents said that they could not go a single day without their cell phones, and 20% said they check them once or more every 20 minutes.

It’s not the frequency of usage that’s the problem; it’s what that level of usage does to our focus. Using our smartphones at night can make it a lot harder to sleep. When we use our smartphones nonstop it can be harder to think clearly.

So, here’s an experiment. For two weeks, set aside some screen free time blocks in your day. During that time fight the urge to open your laptop, watch TV, or glance at your phone. Sustain it for 60 minutes or more and see if you’ve gained better focus at the conclusion of the experiment. Then, go find some cat videos on YouTube to celebrate.

10) Networking and Making Small Talk

Everyone has a small-talk formula. Some people start with the weather (nice, mild winter we’re having, eh?), while others ask how things are going with you at work. But here’s the trick to mastering small talk: Get fascinated by it and the person wielding it. It’s a little like being dealt a hand of cards, you can use what you have to get to bigger and more interesting plays.

If someone asks you how work is, don’t say “fine” — or worse, “busy.” Tell them it’s good and follow up with, “You know, there’s one project in particular that you may find interesting.” If you’re doing the asking, take any opportunity to dive deeper. Use each question as a spring board to the next one. Eventually, you’ll hit on something substantial.

11) Admitting a Mistake

You know that moment right after you realize you’ve accidentally made a mistake? You know, that moment when the dread plummets into your stomach in one sweeping motion? Uncomfortable doesn’t even begin to describe it.

However, even that can be turned around. The most effective way to replace that sinking feeling in your gut is to assess the situation and take action. Ask yourself:
Is it immediately reversible?

On my last blog post, I had a glaring typo. This was not some extra spacing after a period, this was a blatant blemish smack in the middle of my post. And I missed it. Thankfully Claire Autruong caught it and let me know via Twitter so I could edit the post before it was too late. Claire is my favorite person of the week. (Incidentally, she is also a full-stack freelance marketer — inbound certified and nice as can be — if you’re looking.)
Who should know?

Whom does your mistake affect? Who is in the position who can help you solve it? Quickly scan the list of people that need to know about your mistake and contact them explaining what happened and what you’re doing about it.
What’s your plan?

If the mistake isn’t immediately reversible, you’ll need a plan of action. A good plan is the best antidote to mistake-induced discomfort. Shift from panic to determination as soon as possible, and that discomfort will subside.

12) Getting In Over Your Head

Of all the uncomfortable moments, getting in over your head is probably the one most worth pursuing. Sure, it’s a little scary , and there’s always the chance of failure, but nothing stretches you more or makes you more creative than having no idea what you’re doing.

So how do you put yourself in an over-your-head style situation? Raise your hand. When there’s a project no one wants, step up. When there’s a problem that has existed for years, have at it. Then break it down. Take big challenges and tackle them piece by piece. It may not always be fun, but you will almost always be better for the effort.
I’ll stop there …

… but this is really just the beginning. Who knew there were so many uncomfortable things in the world? (Michael Cera. Michael Cera probably knew.)

From negotiating salary to reading “some good, heavy, serious books” as Du Bois suggests, this list could go on and on. Hopefully it will, in your responses.

by Meghan Keaney Anderson, VP of Marketing at HubSpot

10 Simple Writing Tips to Make Your Sales Emails Shine

Good writing is made excellent by two key things: recognizing weaknesses and knowing how to fix them. After all, if you don’t know that there’s an issue to begin with, how can you fix it?

By the end of this article, you’ll be armed with 10 powerful, uber-specific editing actions that’ll make your sales emails more addictive, engaging, and compelling than ever before. Whether you’re writing a prospecting missive, recap email, or follow-up note, ensuring your writing adheres to the following rules will make a profound impact on your prospects.

Namely, these edits will make them more likely to do what you want them to do -- and that’s what great copy is all about.
10 Simple Edits That'll Instantly Improve Any Sales Email

A mesmerized reader, for all intents and purposes, is an engaged prospect -- and that’s exactly what salespeople want. After all, engaged prospects are more likely to keep reading your message, which makes them more likely to reach a call-to-action that’s irresistible.

Are you ready to edit your copy like a pro? Here’s what you gotta do ...

1) Open with questions that get the reader to say “yes.”

Inertia, be it mental or physical, is a powerful force. In other words, whether it’s a long-term relationship or a boulder rolling down a hill, the longer it’s in motion the harder inertia makes it to stop. That’s why writers love using it, especially in their introductions.

The idea is that the longer you can get the reader to say “yes” to your honest, accurate statements, the more likely they are to keep saying “yes” and, ultimately, harmonize with your message. Why? Because they’ll feel like you understand them; like you know exactly what they’re going through.

Make them say “yes” enough and they’ll get the feeling that your product or service can help solve their problem. Hopefully, it can.

2) Double tap the “Enter” button every 1-3 sentences.

As you know, hitting “Enter” or “Return” twice leaves a space between paragraphs. But just because that space is void of words, does not mean it doesn’t serve a purpose.

Just as photographers and designers use negative space to create a focal point, writers can use white space to create emphasis and draw attention to something that’s important.

White space also makes copy appear less intimidating and more readable. It structures the message in a polished, elegant frame that invites readers to dive in.

3) Bold your key benefits.

Bolding the benefits will quickly point readers to the information you absolutely need them to know. In fact, in-text formatting of any kind -- italicizing, underlining, capitalizing, back-linking -- will help you capture and maintain a reader’s attention. That happens because our minds are hardwired to notice change.

Imagine watching a play go from a monologue to a dialogue in the same scene. Or a movie fade to a perfectly white screen. It gets your attention, right?

Something new, thinks your subconscious. Something that stands out. Let’s focus.

4) Isolate important information using bullet points.

As Kurt Vonnegut once wrote, “Pity the readers.” That means go easy on them when you write. Consider that they have to focus on and instantly make sense of every word and every little mark you put in front of them. And they have to do it all online, where attention is at a premium. So help them out.

Bullets and numbered lists will:

    Organize your text, making it more scannable and digestible.
    Highlight your key points and other important bits of information.
    Draw the most attention after your headline and subheads, making them an ideal vessel for benefits.

5) Start sentences with “Imagine,” “Remember,” or “Picture this …”

These words are triggers. They let readers know you’re about to tell them a story, jog their memory, or paint them a picture (the way I do here). People love that stuff. Always have. According to producer Steven Moffat, “We’re all stories, in the end.”

So think of it this way: The word “Imagine” at the beginning of a sentence or paragraph serves the same purpose as the title sequence of your favorite Netflix show. It signals to you that you're about to experience something you enjoy. It yields an anticipatory sensation. It creates suspense. And that’ll keep you engaged in just about any situation, whether you’re watching TV or reading an email.
6) Incorporate the word “because” as often as possible.

“Because” is another trigger word. It lets people know they’re about to hear a justification -- a reason why -- which, according to renowned researcher and author, Dr. Robert Cialdini, is great at getting people to nod their heads:

"A well-known principle of human behavior says that when we ask someone to do us a favor we will be more successful if we provide a reason. People simply like to have reasons for what they do," writes Cialdini in his bestselling book, Influence.

Why? Because science proved it.

(Note: The word “because” has the same effect on paper as it does in-person.)
7) Convert sentences to active voice.

Nothing kills writing quite like the overuse of passive voice. A simple way to combat this? Convert sentences to active voice.

Active voice means the subject of each sentence is doing the action rather than receiving it. The latter would be passive voice. For example:

    Active: Usain Bolt broke the world record.
    Passive: The world record was broken by Usain Bolt.

See how much stronger and more confident the active voice is? Its counterpart is comparatively weak and deflated. Passive voice is just, kinda … meh. It can make you sound like you’re playing a round of Clue. You can do better.

To passive-proof your text, start by doing a CTRL-F for the word “by.” That’ll quickly highlight sentences in which the subject may be receiving the action rather than doing it. Or you can let Hemingway Editor find them for you.
8) Rewrite everything in the second person.

Second person is the most engaging narrative mode because it’s the most personal. Pronouns like “you,” “your,” and “yours” will help the reader see themselves in your copy and, consequently, in the story your product or service is trying to tell.

Great writing speaks to readers on an intimate level. It connects with them, which is incredibly difficult to do. But writing in the second person makes it easier.
9) Count your adverbs and then cut that number in half.

Or, better yet, quarter it. In his memoir, On Writing, Stephen King wrote, “The road to hell is paved with adverbs.” Why so harsh? Because adverbs are very, very good at weakening your writing. See?

If you want your writing to grab people by the collar, replace that mediocre adverb-verb combo with a single punchy, potent verb. For example, instead of writing “she’s very mad” you could write “she’s irate.” Or instead of writing “adverbs are very, very good at weakening your writing” you can write “adverbs sabotage compelling sentences.”
10) Amend your call-to-action to be a call-to-value.

Before you send your email, you should double-check your call-to-action (you know, the essential end-piece that tells your reader what to do next). Make sure it’s clear and concise, bold and visible, urgent and compelling. Most importantly, make sure it communicates benefits (i.e., the value that awaits those who do what you’re asking).

For example, if you’re a travel agent, don’t let your copy read “Call now for a free quote” or something equally typical and uninspiring. Instead, drive them to take action with a sneak peak: “Call now and let the anticipation begin” or “Click today and be gone tomorrow.”

Let your prospects see themselves in the action and they’ll be more likely to take it.
Feeling Prepared?

Editing isn’t easy. It takes guts and character to amend creative work. But remember, you’re doing it for a reason: to make your writing stronger and clearer. In the end, making these edits will take time and effort, but they’ll yield more email opens, more shares, and more conversions.

And believe me, it’ll be worth it.

Written by Eddie Shleyner | @VeryGoodCopy

Guidance for Job Market / How to Say 'No' To Your Boss
« on: October 10, 2016, 10:16:14 AM »
How to Say 'No' To Your Boss

Technically, your boss owns your professional time. That means it's perfectly within her rights to reprioritize what you're working on if she thinks doing so is the best thing for the team.

But even good bosses can have a hard time understanding what's being sacrificed when they assign new tasks and projects. And if you continuously allow your boss to pile new things on your plate, you'll eventually find yourself delaying other work or not getting it done at all. In the end, that reflects poorly on you -- and that's not fair.

Saying "no" to your boss can be intimidating, but there are plenty of cases where it's a totally appropriate thing to do. The key is learning how to say no in a way that's tactful and helps your boss find an alternative solution.

This is a skill that'll serve you well in every stage of your career. Being able to say "no" to the right things in the right ways will end up saving you a whole lot of time and pain.

So the next time your boss asks you to increase your workload, take on a task you think is a bad idea, or work outside of your normal hours ... how do you know whether it's an okay time to say "no"? And what's the best way to decline?
When Is It Okay to Say 'No' to Your Boss?

There are some situations when it's okay to say no to your boss, and some situations when it's not. The first question you should ask yourself is: What situation are you in when the request comes in?

For example, if you're within the first six months of a brand new job, you need to be more of a "yes-man" (or woman) than not in order to establish yourself as a hardworking, motivated, and competent team player. Putting in extra time and effort when you're proving yourself to a new team is, frankly, what's expected of you in a new role. Same goes if you've just received poor feedback or a bad evaluation at work and need to spend some time proving yourself again.

Finally, if you've recently said "no" to a request from your boss, you'll want to think more carefully about this new one so you don't come across as a naysayer.

But if you've proven yourself by being a high performer and a valuable coworker, then you can set some limits.
How to Say 'No' To Your Boss

Let's walk through a few tips for setting yourself up to say no to your boss in a way that's diplomatic and acceptable.
1) Respond right away, even if it's just to ask for more time.

When that request comes in over email or in a virtual chat, it can be easy to "hide out" and pretend you didn't see it until you have a well-formulated response. (Unless your boss uses the HubSpot Sales Chrome extension, that is. It notifies you when someone opens your emails.)

As tempting as it might be, don't wait to respond until you have a rebuttal prepared. The more communicative you are from the get-go, the more trustworthy and professional you'll appear -- putting you in a better position to negotiate later.

But what should you say in that initial response?

If you take only one thing away from this article, this is it: Saying no to your boss doesn't mean actually saying the word "no."

While something like "No, sorry, I don't have time right now" might seem like a totally legitimate response to you, an instantaneous "no" can not only be off-putting, but it could also signify to your boss that you're having trouble prioritizing and executing on your work.

For the sake of your relationship with your boss and your integrity as an employee, you'll need to tread more carefully than that. So instead, here's what you might write in that initial response:
Validate their request.

Instead of just saying "no," Leadership Development Expert Kirstin Lynde suggests responding first with words of affirmation.

"As soon as you get the request, you might say something like, 'I understand why this is an important thing to get done,'" she told me. "Or, if you don't think that, you might say, 'I think I see what you mean.'"

This validates the request and shows your boss you're listening without necessarily assigning you as the point person for the task.
Ask questions.

Once you've affirmed their request, Lynde suggests that you get curious.

"Ask questions. Say, 'It would be helpful to understand a little bit more about what you're thinking -- about timing, the amount of attention you want me to give to this, and so on,'" she suggests. "You may have a totally different concept than your boss does of how long it'll take and which skills will be needed."

The answers to these questions will give you more context for you to frame your pushback around (or might reveal to you that you can take the project on after all, negating the "no" entirely).
Ask for a little bit of time if you need it.

If you need to, buy yourself some time to evaluate the request and whether or not you can actually do it. You might say something like, "May I have a half a day to think this through and see where it fits alongside my other priorities?" Unless it's super urgent, a good boss is likely to honor that request.
2) List out why you need or want to say 'no.'

Once you've established that you've received the request and bought yourself some time, use it to thoughtfully evaluate whether -- and why -- you need to decline.

Is it because you have a looming deadline on an important project? Or do you disagree with the strategy? Is it because you consider whatever's being asked of you unethical? Or is it because you're days away from a big vacation and you simply don't have the availability to take on anything new just now?

As you brainstorm, write down these answers. They'll come in handy later when you're formulating a response to your boss.
3) Put yourself in your boss' shoes.

Empathy can be a powerful tool when attempting to persuade. By considering the situation from your boss' perspective, you'll be able to frame a much more compelling argument later.

Ask yourselves questions like:

    Why is your boss asking you to do this?
    What business purpose does it serve?
    If you declined the request, what would happen?

By considering the situation from her point of view as well as your own, you'll be able to more easily come up with a solution that is agreeable to both parties -- whether it's executing on the proposed plan, or putting a different one forward.
4) Come up with an alternative solution.

If you're still leaning toward a "no," your strongest argument will include an alternative way to solve the problem. Your boss will appreciate the concern and effort you put into helping her find some way to get the task done, even if you're not the one doing it.

For example, you might ask to postpone the task until some of your other priorities are finished, or possibly come back with a list of coworkers who might be up for the task. Have any colleagues who might be interested in growing their career through projects like this, or whose background is a better fit? That's a great way to show you're paying attention to and are interested in your peers' professional development.
5) Ask your boss to help you reprioritize.

If not having enough time to complete the task is your main concern, ask your boss to help you reprioritize. This will give her a better understanding of what you have on your plate and what you'd have to give up by taking on a new task or project, while also giving her a chance to share her two cents on what's important.

You might say something like, "In taking this on, I want to make sure I don't drop the ball on other priorities. Would you mind helping me sort out my current projects and figure out where this fits in?"

Then, set up a meeting and share what you're working on, how long it's taking, and what you'd have to delay or stop doing if you were to take on the new project. To prepare, type our your notes neatly and clearly in a document you can share with your boss to show you've put time and effort into collaborating on a mutually beneficial solution.

If all goes well, you'll end the meeting with permission to move around your priorities in a way both of you are happy with.
6) Choose your words carefully.

During this conversation, frame your responses in a way that makes it clear you're thinking and concerned about the company's interests -- and choose your wording carefully.

"Most [good bosses] say they’re willing to listen to sound reasoning to find a solution," says Diane Amundson, a workplace communications consultant. "It’s all about how you frame and phrase it."

Here are some tips to help you get your ideas across effectively:

    Acknowledge her idea. Your boss will be more open to listening to an alternative solution or hearing a "no" if you've first validated her suggestion.
    Be direct, but tactful. This is a key business skill that'll serve you well in every stage of your career.
    Avoid negative excuses, like "It's not my turn"; "I did it last time"; "I wouldn't know where to begin to do that."
    Use positive phrasing. Instead of saying, "I can't do this project because I have too much other work," try something like, "I know this project is important for hitting our number this month, and I have a few ideas about how to reorganize the workload."
    Show you're resourceful by doing your research and presenting other ideas.
    Don't get defensive. Position your message in a neutral, rational way. For example, you might say, "I understand your perspective, and here’s another way to think about the situation."
    Show you care about the team's goals. You and your boss share a higher purpose: to accomplish your team and company goals. Acknowledge that you're in it together, and frame your suggestions as ways to help that goal.

7) Be communicative.

Don't wait too long before scheduling a conversation with your boss or letting her know that you won't be able to carry out her request. If your boss sees you've left a conversation open-ended, she might think she's being blown off.

The more communicative you are, the more trustworthy and professional you come across. Plus, keeping her in the loop will help you and her figure out an alternative solution with time to spare.

Pushing back on a request from your boss can be intimidating -- especially if your boss is the kind of person who's constantly sending you new ideas and pushing projects onto you unexpectedly.

But in the end, being honest about what you can and cannot accomplish is much better than setting yourself up for failure.

Written by Lindsay Kolowich | @lkolow

Fair and Events / 1st Career Boot Camp-2016 for DIU Freshers of Fall-2016
« on: October 10, 2016, 10:12:35 AM »

Career Development Center (CDC) of Daffodil International University organized “1st Career Boot Camp-2016” held on October 07, 2016 at DIU Permanent Campus. More than 250 students participate at this event. People from different corporate houses were addressed to the fresher’s. In order to give the fresher’s a complete guideline for their future career, all guests from different fieldsshared their success story so that the students can have a clear idea of the upcoming challenges in near future. It was like a preparation for their battle field.

Mr. Kazi Rakib Uddin Ahmed, Treasurer & Trusty Board of BOLD (Bangladesh Organization of Learning & Development), Mr. Tamzid Siddiq Spondon, Managing Director along with his team from Zanala Bangladesh were present there as special guests. Mr. Anamul Haque Bijoy & Mr. Mehedi Hasan Miraz (U-19) players of Bangladesh National Cricket Team were also present and motivated the fresher’s.

The daylong program was consisting of different grooming sessions, workshops, seminars, different games & cultural programs. The purpose of the event was to introducethe fresher’s with new career dimension and shape their mind towards future career.

Please note that this initiative of CDC is the part of execution against "4 Years Plan for DIU Graduating Students" and CDC Team is committed to conduct this event on regulars basis and more organize way in future.

Be a Leader / A Good Life Contains These 6 Essentials
« on: September 28, 2016, 12:06:14 PM »
A Good Life Contains These 6 Essentials

The values that make up the foundation of a life well lived—and, no surprise, money isn’t one of them

The ultimate expression of life is not a paycheck. The ultimate expression of life is not a Mercedes. The ultimate expression of life is not a million dollars or a bank account or a home. The ultimate expression of life is living a good life.

Here's what we must ask constantly, "What, for me, would be a good life?" And you have to keep going over and over the list—a list including areas such as spirituality, economics, health, relationships and recreation.

So, what would constitute a good life? Jim Rohn has a short list:

1. Productivity
You won't be happy if you don't produce. The game of life is not rest. Yes, we must rest, but only long enough to gather strength to get back to productivity.

What's the reason for the seasons and the seeds, the soil and the sunshine, the rain and the miracle of life? It's to see what you can do with it—to try your hand to see what you can do.

2. Good frie.nds

Friendship is probably the greatest support system in the world, so don't deny yourself the time to develop it. Nothing can match it. It's extraordinary in its benefit.

Friends are those wonderful people who know all about you and still like you. I lost one of my dearest friends when he was 53—heart attack. As one of my very special friends, I used to say that if I was stuck in a foreign jail somewhere accused unduly, and, if they would allow me one phone call, I would call David. Why? He would come and get me. That's a real friend—somebody who would come and get you.

And we've all got casual friends, friends who, if you called them, they would say, "Hey, if you get back, call me and we'll have a party."

You’ve got to have both real friends and casual friends.

3. Your culture:
Language, music, ceremonies, traditions, dress. All of that is so vitally important that you must keep it alive. The uniqueness of all of us, when blended together, brings vitality, energy, power, influence, and rightness to the world.

4. Spirituality:
It helps to form the foundation of the family that builds the nation. And make sure you study, practice and teach—don't be careless about the spiritual part of your nature because it's what makes us who we are, different from dogs, cats, birds and mice.

5. Don't miss anything:
My parents taught me not to miss anything, not the game, the performance, the movie, the dance. Just before my father died at 93, if you were to call him at 10:30 or 11 at night, he wouldn't be home. He was at the rodeo, he was watching the kids play softball, he was listening to the concert, he was at church—he was somewhere every night.

Go to everything you possibly can. Buy a ticket to everything you possibly can. Go see everything and experience all you possibly can.

Live a vital life. If you live well, you will earn well. If you live well, it will show in your face; it will show in the texture of your voice. There will be something unique and magical about you if you live well. It will infuse not only your personal life but also your business life. And it will give you a vitality nothing else can give.

6. Your family and the inner circle:
Invest in them, and they'll invest in you. Inspire them, and they'll inspire you. Take care of the details with your inner circle.

When my father was still alive, I used to call him when I traveled. He'd have breakfast most every morning with the farmers at a little place called The Decoy Inn out in the country where we lived in Southwest Idaho.

When I was in Israel, I'd have to get up in the middle of the night, but I'd call Papa. I'd say, "Papa, I'm in Israel." He'd say, "Israel! Son, how are things in Israel?" He'd talk real loud so everybody could hear. I'd say, "Papa, last night they gave me a reception on the rooftop underneath the stars overlooking the Mediterranean." He'd say, "Son, a reception on the rooftop underneath the stars overlooking the Mediterranean?" Now everybody knew the story. And giving my father that special day only took five or 10 minutes.

If a father walks out of the house and he can still feel his daughter's kiss on his face all day, he's a powerful man. If a husband walks out of the house and he can still feel the imprint of his wife's arms around his body, he's invincible all day. It's the special stuff with your inner circle that makes you strong and powerful and influential. So don't miss that opportunity.

The prophet said, "There are many virtues and values, but here's the greatest: one person caring for another." There is no greater value than love.

So make sure in your busy day to remember the true purpose and the reasons you do what you do. May you truly live the kind of life that will bring the fruit and rewards that you desire.

A C:  Jim Rohn life philosophies

DIIT is one of the leading educational institute working for the development of the Nation since 2000. It is one of the units of Daffodil Family operating programs BBA, CSE, BTHM & MBA under National University of Bangladesh. DIIT is committed to provide quality education to build a creative leaders of the nation. Currently it is required full-time faculty for the following Positions.

Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA):

 1. ï Assistant Professor
 2. Senior Lecturer
 3. Lecturer

Computer science & Engineering (CSE)

1. ï Assistant Professor
 2. Senior Lecturer
 3. Lecturer

Bachelor of Tourism & Hospitality Management (BTHM)

1. ï Assistant Professor
 2. Senior Lecturer
 3. Lecturer

Interested candidates are requested to apply by 10 October, 2016 to the Principal of DIIT:

64/3 & 64/4, Lake Circus, Dolphingoli, Kalabagan, Dhaka-1205
Email: website:
Facebook :

6 Ways to Keep Your Attitude Up When Life Tries to Bring You Down

Instead of spending your time thinking about how bad things are, think about how good they will be.

A positive attitude is key to a successful life, so what happens when things go wrong? We have a tendency to let our attitudes take a dive along with our state of affairs. But life is going to deal setbacks, both minor and major, on a regular basis, and if we are going to be successful, we need to know how to keep our attitudes intact.

 ‘What You Think, You Become’

We need practical tools to help us understand how we can keep our attitudes up when the circumstances are down. Here are some thoughts to help us do so:

1. Take some time away :  You know what happens. You’re going about your day and everything seems to be going well, when out of nowhere, disaster strikes. All of your best laid plans begin to tumble. Sometimes circumstances surprise us and we react—and, unfortunately, this often compounds the problem, because by reacting, we tend to operate out of our weaknesses instead of our strengths. We make decisions that are not well thought out. We function with a bad attitude that says, “I can't believe this is happening!”

The next time life turns against you, take some time to just step back from the problem and think. This will enable you to rationally deal with the issue at hand, instead of emotionally reacting. It will allow you to put your state of mind back in its proper place. It will give you the opportunity to choose your attitude as you face the circumstances at hand. Remember that you don't have to do something right now. Go grab a cup of coffee and relax. You are in control—not the circumstances.

" Look for the Hidden Good"

2. Keep your eye on the goal: One of the biggest problems with trouble is that it gets your focus off where it should be. When racecar drivers get into trouble, they keep their eyes straight ahead and do not move them away. There is too much chance of wrecking otherwise. Instead, their eyes are on the goal—and this keeps them out of trouble.

If you find yourself getting down about circumstances, sit down and write out what your goal is, and give some thought to how you can achieve it. Make sure you’re keeping the important things important.

A man was asked how he was doing and he responded, "Pretty well, under the circumstances." The other man asked, "What are you doing under the circumstances?" Good question. We shouldn't be under the circumstances. We should be focused on the goal and moving forward.

3. Focus on solutions, not problems : “The squeaky wheel gets the grease,” the old saying goes. Negative circumstances don't sit idly by—they scream for our attention. When we face difficult circumstances, we tend to dwell on them. We talk about them, fret about them and give them way too much attention.

Instead of talking about problems, talk about solutions. Instead of spending your time thinking about how bad things are, think about how good they will be!3 Don't have family or staff meetings about the problems and how big they are; have meetings on the solutions and how you will implement them. Don't let yourself or other team members complain; encourage them to solve, with an emphasis on the positive results that will come from doing so. Then take some time to put these solutions down on paper so you can monitor your progress.

4. Get some positive input : The mind tends to build on itself, so when we begin to go in one direction (like worrying), it can be a slippery slope. One thing we must do is get our thoughts back on track with positive ideas. Because Worry Never Fixes Anything

When circumstances have you against the emotional wall, meet with a friend who can encourage you. Pick up a good book and read. Whatever external influence you can get to put your attitude back on the positive side of the tracks—do it! It must be one of our first goals to start plugging good things into our minds to power our attitudes.

5. Tell yourself the good : One of the greatest internal powers we have is the power to control our thoughts.

Spend time dwelling on the good things about your life or career instead of the problems. Think about positive things—things that you enjoy and that give you a sense of happiness and peace.6 There is an old childhood song that says, "Count your blessings—name them one by one." That’s great advice! Let your positive attitude develop from within as well as from without. This makes all the difference!

6. Remember that circumstances are not forever : Sometimes it seems like we are going to be up to our eyeballs in the situation forever, when in reality, “this too shall pass.” There will be a time in the future when circumstances will change and you will be on the mountain instead of in the valley. This will give you a sense of hope as you live and work that will change your attitude, make you feel better and put you on the fast track for growth.

Articles by Chris Widener

Top 10 careers for satisfaction and fulfillment

Do you love your job? Does it “satisfy” you? There are so many important factors when it comes to defining what makes a worthwhile career. Here, we talk to the experts to find 10 jobs almost anyone could do that might really enhance your life.

Although opinions about what constitutes the ‘perfect’ job vary widely, one thing we can probably all agree on when it comes to choosing a career is that it should be satisfying.

Finding a way to do what you love while still making enough money to get by isn’t always easy, but it’s certainly worthwhile. Employees who are engaged in their work tend to be more productive, have higher self-esteem, and enjoy better overall health and work/life balance.
But what’s the main difference between a job you truly love and one that just pays the bills?

One report from an international cabinet office shows that although money can make us happy to a certain extent, other factors like social support and opportunities for development and growth can actually influence our satisfaction at work far more than our pay cheque.

Feeling challenged is also important, and often the most satisfying jobs provide both feedback and variety, while also allowing for some independence.

In Australia, the happiest workers tend to be those who run their own business or work for a small or medium enterprise.

This is hardly surprising considering that people who run their own business often have more control and confidence in their work situation, and smaller teams are able to work together more closely and provide higher levels of support and feedback.
Based on these factors, here are ten of the most satisfying careers to get into:

(All pay figures are approximate and based on variations state by state. Head to Pay Scale to find out more specific information. All other figures have been sourced from Job Outlook. All figures as correct at time of publication of post.)

1. Fashion designer

Fashion designers are ranked highly on the list of most satisfying careers, which is no surprise considering that they generally have a great deal of independence and control over how they work. Many even go on to start their own custom clothing business or online retail store.

Salary: AU$34,078 – AU$81,253
2. Dental assistant

Dental assistants are expected to be in high demand in the coming five years, and the number of expected jobs is between 10,000 and 25,000. Because dental assistants tend to work in smaller teams and have a close working relationship with their immediate supervisors, their level of job satisfaction is generally high.

Salary: AU$25,850 – AU$53,205
3. Author or freelance writer

The opportunity to use skills and talents is an important contributor to job satisfaction, so it’s no surprise that writing is ranked as one of the happiest jobs. Authors and writers also have more freedom to dictate their own working hours, and often spend more time at home, which supports a healthy work/life balance.

Salary: AU$35,378 – AU$93,701
4. Executive or administration assistant

Working as an administrative or executive assistant not only pays well, but also provides opportunities for developing wider life skills like problem solving. Another factor that contributes to job satisfaction is the variation of the work. Along with administrative duties, an executive assistant’s job includes things like organising business travel, arranging meetings and coordinating business resources.

Salary: AU$46,599 – AU$79,483
5. Early childhood educator

Teaching professionals and early childhood educators are often ranked as some of the happiest workers due to the sense of meaning they derive from their work.

Salary: AU$30,787 – AU$69,410
6. Accountant

Job security is another big determinant of career satisfaction, and if you’re looking to make a career change, accountancy just might be a good option. Accountants were ranked as some of the most in-demand workers for 2014, and around 21,400 new accountancy jobs are expected to be added by 2017.

Salary: AU$38,989 – AU$79,016
7. Travel consultant

Working as a travel consultant can be both challenging and rewarding as it provides plenty of opportunity for working both one-on-one with clients as well as independently. Broader skills that will be gained in this career include communication skills, problem-solving skills and the ability to work under pressure.

Salary: AU$27,404 – AU$50,750
8. Dietitian or dietetic assistant

There is a growing demand for dietitians (and those that support them as professional assistants) in Australia and overseas, and the ability to advise patients and their families about proper nutritional care makes it a rewarding and satisfying career. Although dietitians often work in hospitals or nursing care facilities, they may also work with clients privately, and many go on to set up their own practice.

Salary: AU$41,427 – AU$67,241
9. Fitness instructor

As with teaching, the ability to help others engage in a healthier lifestyle helps personal trainers and fitness instructors to derive more meaning from their job. Aside from this, the ability to be active throughout the day as well as the varied nature of this job makes it one of the top most satisfying careers to pursue.

Salary: AU$24,076 – AU$61,277

10. Physiotherapist or physiotherapy assistant

The ageing population and higher healthcare costs mean that the job outlook for most healthcare professionals is good, and jobs are widely available in both suburban and city areas. Physiotherapists and the professionals that assist them are some of the most sought-after and in-demand roles within this sector.

Salary: AU$44,947 – AU$61,314

At the end of the day, finding a career you love and that enables you to use your specific skills and talents can have a huge impact on every aspect of your life, both personal and professional.
So – over to you!

If you’re looking to ease into a new career or test the waters to see if you might be better suited to another line of work, an online course could be the perfect stepping stone.

Changing careers is more common than you might think, and the average adult will change careers between 4 and 7 times in their life. Of course, the best way to make the switch will vary depending on your age and where you are in your career; so check out this post for advice on changing careers through the years.

Still not sure where to get started? Open Colleges has a great team of dedicated career experts who can help guide you on the path to a career change. Give one of our course and career advisors a call today and find a course that meets your needs: 1300 449 227.

(Please note – not all the careers presented here can be studied for completely online – the links are there to provide you with information on courses that may form part or all of your study and career journey.)

Source: Open College

8 awesome ways to make your morning less stressful[/center]

We all have to deal with mornings. Some of us are “morning people” but most of us struggle with the first couple of hours of the day. We’ve hacked 8 easy ways you can make your morning less stressful. So, let’s get moving!

Even the most organized household can be fraught with tension in the mornings. Maybe you over-slept , or perhaps you decided to leave your ironing to the last minute. Or you forgot to pack your gym bag and you can’t find your keys. If there are children in the mix then there will be lunch boxes, readers and uniforms to worry about too – there are a plethora of slip-ups that could derail your morning and cause your stress levels to soar!

But the reality is that most of us are juggling different demands on our time – we need to be flexible and find solutions that really work for us.

Whoever you live with and whatever you have on your agenda for the day, there are some simple adjustments you can make to make your morning less stressful.

1)    Get up earlier to create a buffer

Giving yourself a time buffer in the morning is a great way to take the pressure off. Even getting up 20 or 30 minutes earlier can make a huge difference to how your day begins.

Paul Puckridge is a time management guru and training manager at the Success Institute. He’s been helping people set goals for years and offers some adivce.


“If you leave no buffer time for yourself in the morning, you’re bound to get stressed when things don’t go your way,” says Paul.

Paul suggests that you use this time to mentally prepare yourself for the day. If you have young children it will also give you an opportunity to get a head start on showering and dressing yourself.

2) Do what you can today to make tomorrow easier

When you have had a long and busy day the last thing you feel like doing is running around organising things for the morning. But a few jobs ticked off your list the night before can make a huge difference in the morning.


“Prepare as much as you can,” says Aerlie Wildy, life coach and time management specialist. “This includes packing lunches, topping up drink bottles, getting sports bags ready and getting clothes out for everyone.”

The same goes for your gym kit, laptop bag and anything else that could be a potential time trap in the morning. Think about the things that often delay you at the last minute – for example, if you often find yourself running around looking for your keys start putting your keys in the same place every evening when you come home.

Aerlie suggests placing your keys, phone and glasses together – “so you can grab and go.”

3)    Map out your week

Rather than mentally logging your appointments for the week it is a good idea to find a tool that you can use to methodically plan your week. There are lots of different tools available such as weekly planner apps or even a good old-fashioned diary.

“Every Sunday night, sit down for 10 minutes with your preferred tool and map out your week,” suggests Kate Christie, author of the book ‘Me Time – The Professional Woman’s Guide to finding 30 guilt-free hours a month’.

Kate recommends that you use your planning tool to record not only appointments, but details such as what time you need to leave the house and what you need to take with you.

“By setting aside time on a Sunday night you will have a good overview of the week ahead, and that will reduce your stress levels each morning,” she explains.

4) In-source!

How much of your morning is spent doing tasks for other people? Kate notes that if you start getting everyone you live with (be it partner, kids, flat-mates) to do things for themselves you will save a great deal of time.

“What you may have lost sight of is that you are not a slave,” she says.

Kate says that you should think of your household as a team. “Make each member of your household accountable for their own stuff – they are capable of tidying away their own belongings, hanging up their own towels, making their own beds, putting away their own clothes and so on,” she explains.

If you have older children you can further eliminate stress from your morning routine by giving them responsibility for packing their school bag and laying out their uniform the night before.

5)  Outsource!

Of course there will always be jobs that we can outsource and it is worth considering if you are prepared to pay someone to help ease your load. Kate says that although we might feel guilty about outsourcing it can sometimes make good sense. “Calculate what your own time is worth,” she suggests.

“If your hourly rate is $80 and a cleaner costs $20 an hour, and the cleaner takes 3 hours to clean your house, then that is less than 1 hour of your own time. You can leave your dirty house in the morning in the happy knowledge that when you get home it will be sparkling clean,” Kate explains.

6) Set some tech ground rules

While it is probably unrealistic to keep technology switched off in the morning, it is a good idea to set a few ground rules so that it doesn’t become a distraction.

Digital productivity and time management coach Megan Lemma, says that it’s a good idea to leave your tablet and smartphone charging somewhere other than your bedroom. That way you won’t be tempted to check for messages the moment you wake up.

Similarly, home organisation consultant Georgie Rees notes that every minute you have in the morning needs to be spent wisely.

“Set time limits for the TV, computer, tablets and smartphones and stick to them,” she says. “There will always be an interesting segment that you just have to watch, or an email that you want to read, but you don’t want it to take over.”

7)    Go to bed earlier

While it can be tempting to sit up late watching the television with your partner or socialising with housemates, an early night is the best possible thing you can do to reduce your stress in the morning.

“Television and your computer screens only stimulate your brain, which makes it harder for  you to get to sleep,” says Paul Puckridge.

A better plan, according to Puckridge is to pick up a book or have a long bath or shower. “Find a way to make the last half-hour before bed more relaxing,” he says. “You’ll find that within a few days you’ll end up sleeping better at waking up with more energy.”

8) Take a moment to breathe

A simple strategy to help create a calmer atmosphere in the morning is to simply press pause for a moment. “Take a deep breath and be present in the moment,” says Georgie. “Get focused for the brilliant day ahead.”


There are lots of simple strategies that can help you relax in the moment that won’t hold you up. Meditation apps, listening to a calming piece of classical music or learning a simple breathing technique are great ways to start injecting some calm into your morning.

We hope that following these simple steps will make your morning less stressful – because as Henry Ward Beecher says “the first hour of the morning is the rudder of the day.”
OK, now your mornings are less stressful – so what next?

Open Colleges has a flexible, online course for everyone. Flexible courses can be started any day of the year.

There are no due dates – pause your study when you need to or move as quickly though the course material as you can. Don’t stress out! Learn when and where you want to.

Source: Open College

9 ways to become a lifelong learner

Lifelong learning requires embracing opportunities to learn. We must believe that, at any point in time, we have the potential to change and grow through the application of knowledge and experience.

No one is saying that with enough motivation and hard work we can all become the next Einstein or Beethoven, but lifelong learners do believe that a person’s potential is full of unknown possibilities. Their drive comes from the fact that the outcome of pursing our true potential and passion through training is full of exciting opportunities.

So how do you nurture this so-called growth mindset if it doesn’t come naturally? And how do you hold onto it if you’ve got it already? Follow our nine tips to make sure your passion for learning lasts a lifetime.

1. Accept responsibility for your own learning.

We’ve all had bad teachers and various obstacles that prevented us from sailing smoothly through formal education, but ultimately, we are responsible for our own learning outcomes. This becomes clearer than ever when formal schooling ends and adult life begins. The knowledge you develop is directly related to the effort you put into gaining it.

2. Create your own learning toolbox.

How do you learn? Do you listen to podcasts, jot down notes, draw mind maps, or rehearse what you’ve learned aloud? Identify the tools you use to promote your own learning, and create new ones to add to your collection. Being aware of how you learn is an important part of being an effective lifelong learner.

3. Try new things on a regular basis.

Trying new things not only keeps our brains sharp but also feeds the growth mindset. When you broaden your perspective, you start to realise there’s far more left to learn about the world than you ever imagined. Why not start volunteering, cook a meal from another country or try Pilates?

4. Keep a “to-learn” list and set goals.

It can consist of entire languages or quirky facts, as long as it’s yours. There’s something permanent-feeling about writing something down – try it, you’ll see the difference. Also, it always helps to have a plan. That’s why some of us decide to learn Italian in six weeks or master photography in six months. Identifying and visualising our goals helps us become driven, effective learners.

5. Ask questions when you’re confused.

Many of us think asking questions is a sign of weakness, but I say it’s a sign of maturity. If you are confident enough in your own intelligence to speak up when you need help, you’ll have no trouble becoming a lifelong learner – and you’ll know more than you did if you’d been too shy.

6. Put it into practice.

Skill-based learning is useless if it isn’t applied. Studying painting isn’t the same as picking up a brush. If your knowledge can be applied, put it into practice and create something.

7. Choose a career that encourages learning.

Pick a career that encourages continual learning. If you are in a job that doesn’t have much intellectual freedom, consider switching to one that does. Don’t spend forty hours of your week in a job that doesn’t challenge you.

8. Have projects and hobbies.

It seems like a simple idea, but the truth is, projects and hobbies can easily slip away from us when we’re not looking. Sure, you can learn plenty watching Breaking Bad every at night after work, but what if you also pick up knitting or read a Shakespeare play every other morning? It will only feel like work until you’ve slipped into a routine (which usually doesn’t take long).

9. Improve your memory.

If you can’t remember what you’ve been learning, learning itself can become frustrating. There are plenty of techniques available to help improve your working memory capacity so that you can recall more of what you’ve learned.

Don’t leave learning behind. Making a continuous effort to follow some of these tips will help to ensure you live a fulfilling, interesting and exciting life. And who doesn’t want that?
What will you learn next?

If you’re feeling ready to take on your next project, check out Open Colleges’ range of interest-based and nationally - recognized courses to start learning a new skill or even begin a new career.

Source: Open College

What these 12 Inspirational Women Can Teach Us About Success

Most successful people have one thing in common: they all created & adapted their own career path. We interviewed 12 of Australia’s most inspiring women online & discovered their secrets to success. Here are the themes that emerged.

1.    Be Passionate

As Nikki Parkinson of Styling You says,

    ““if you do something you love and you are passionate about, it will still be hard work, the big difference is that it will be easy to turn up every day.”

Many of us grew up with the belief that money is a synonym of success. This idea can push us into paths that we don’t really like. You might still find the money, but you will live with the constant pain of not enjoying every day. Create a path that suits your objectives and passions and you will much more willing to stick it out when times are tough.

2.    Commit to continued education

Technology and the way we do business is constantly evolving and therefore so should our skills. If you want to stay successful it is important to commit to ongoing education goals. This applies to all levels. Whether you need to learn a new programming language or gain new managerial skills, there is always an opportunity to learn and improve your performance.

3.    Be persistent and determined

Turning up to work everyday is not always an easy task. Many times it will be difficult to find a role that will put you on the right track for the career of your dreams. If you hit a roadblock in an important task, look for alternative ways to solve it and stay determined.

Kasia Gospos of Leaders in Heels gave us a great example. “I hired a web developer to create a website. Unfortunately he never finished his work and I lost a few thousand dollars. Instead of giving up I decided to teach myself how to build a website, learn basics of html, create graphic design and how to manage social media and online communities.”

4.    Find a Mentor

It is okay to ask for advice. A great way of get inspiration and knowledge is by having a mentor. Learning new things can be a complex process. First you need to study what to do and then learn how to do it. A good mentor can provide you with useful knowledge and experience that can help you get where you want to be a lot faster.

5.     Be prepared to change careers several times

The days of the 30-year career are over. Markets are changing, trends are changing, technology is evolving. As Angela Priestley from Women’s Agenda points out, we need to

 “stay flexible and adaptable enough to change your career according to the shifting needs and opportunities that come up in our world.”

Don’t waste time waiting for the perfect position. Life is short and it’s never too late to change roles or even careers. As you will see all of our interviewees each changed careers multiple times as they continued to hone their skills, mature and discover their passions.

Source: Open College

How to manage your money when studying

Luckily, studying online means you don’t have to give up earning money or doing the things you love. Learning how to manage your finances will ensure you’re free to focus on the things that matter. Check out our tips now!

Managing money when you’re studying full-time or even part-time can seem like a juggling act of bills, fees, textbooks and waiting for the payday that always seems like it’s just a little too far away.

But you don’t need to resort to 2-minute noodles for all three of your daily meals to make your study and your money work for you.

Give yourself some credit by getting none.

There’s some wisdom in that statement. The number one way that students get themselves in financial trouble isn’t the cost of living or the cost of tuition; it’s over-extension of credit cards. And it’s rare that credit card use is linked to actual living costs.

When you have a plastic card that gives you access to a trip to the Gold Coast with the family or those shoes that you “simply must have”, it’s not hard to see why the average Aussie holds $3400 of credit card debt that is costing at an average of 17% in interest.


Cut up the credit card and use a debit card linked to your savings account instead. You’ll save up to $500 in account fees a year as students often qualify for fee-free accounts. Plus, you’ll avoid running up debt that takes most Australians around 43 years to actually pay off. Add mortgages, car loans and the many personal loans we tend to accumulate over a lifetime and you’ll appreciate cutting that extra $7000 a year of debt maintenance out of your budget.
Set a realistic budget that includes your lifestyle items.

It’s not the power bills, rent or car rego that sets us back. It’s the double-decaf-soy-lattes with a cherry macaroon that nukes your bank balance. While you might think that coffee and cake is good value because of the free WIFI that you get at the cafe, it’s adds up to almost half of the amount most students spend on groceries each week to treat yourself daily. So when the car rego bomb drops or the quarterly power bill arrives, what you’re experiencing isn’t “bill shock.” It’s cafe shock!

While you might deserve a treat, so does your budget. Take a flask of espresso from home. Make your own cakes and slices. You can still have your coffee and cake. It’s just that it doesn’t need to cost you $50 a week to have it.

Your small change will save you on those lean weeks.

Make a habit of emptying out your purse or wallet of all that loose change at the end of each day. Unload all the silver and gold in to a container or piggy bank and you’ll have that extra few dollars the day before you get paid for the milk, bread or bus fare when you really need it.

Most of the expenses we have in that last few days before we get paid are basic living expenses. Public transport, lunch, dinner, or perhaps a bit of credit on your pre-paid mobile phone.

Putting all your spare change aside at home means you have a pool of quick cash to handle those small things when you need them. It’s not uncommon to find that a change box at home can contain hundreds of dollars when left alone. You’ll appreciate that cash when you most need it!

Pay yourself first.

This is a great old trick that economic and financial commentators from Ross Gittins to Scott Pape have advocated. Before your groceries, before your bills, before your loan repayments, set aside a portion of your income to pay yourself. Paying yourself is simply making sure you put money in your savings before anything else.

It’s hard when you know that cash could go towards paying off loans, buying something nice or even to pay forward a future bill. But paying yourself first means you are putting your future first by investing in yourself. And let’s face it; if you pay all those other things first, you’re not as likely to then take a portion of what’s left to put in your savings.

Pay a little today. Save a lot tomorrow.

You’ve never experienced satisfaction quite like getting a $0 bill from a power company. By paying a little each time you get paid to your regular utilities like power, water, phone and health insurance you are saving yourself from some massive shocks down the track.

If your phone bill comes in at $100 per month and you get paid weekly, you can pay $25 towards your phone bill every week and never have to pay out that whole $100 in one amount again. One big monthly bill can blow your budget for a week when you don’t spread your payments out. Imagine what a difference that will make when your average quarterly power bill is over $500.

Managing your money as a student seems to be all about common sense. A few small changes to how you manage your money each week can make a big difference to your bank account immediately and over the long term. Your stomach will also thank you for not eating noodles and tomato sauce for dinner every night.

Source: Open College

Co-Op & Its Impact in Job Market

Author : Mr. Mozammel Khan
Engineering Manager (Hardware Design)
Elysium Broadband Inc.
Toronto, Canada

"Co-op is learning by doing, not learning by observation!!! We will not be competitive in the job market unless  we graduate with Co-op experience”.

1. Abstract:The main objective of this white paper is to provide some basic information on Co-op & its impact in Job Market, and how help students to obtain career-related experience during college/university education, which enhance the academic experience and/or assist in exploring career options in future.

2. Introduction: Most of the developed countries (Canada, USA, & Sweden, etc.) introduce students Co-op Program through co-operative & internship Education. The purpose of Co-operative education is to find people who have the skills needed to meet its future employment needs.  Through free activities and work assignment with real projects (Co-ops), students are brought into closer with working life. It's an opportunity to earn money and continue our education and get ready for real job market.

From the professional development view, Co-op gives us opportunity to interact with others of
different backgrounds, ages, and personalities, and learn how to work effectively with them. It is
the Co-op's ability to function effectively within the system, which will often determine our success. 

3. Why Co-op??? Most of the cases, question arise, “What Co-op will do for me?” The answer is simple: As much as we want!! Co-op education will provide us with opportunities for first-hand knowledge of our chosen profession, practical know-how, financial reward and reinforcement of overall academic principles. More important, Co-op offers us the opportunity to become self-reliant, decision-making ability, moral integrity and sample the "real world."
Growing and learning opportunities are endless - limited only by our willingness to accept the challenges.

4. Motivation:Co-op now-a-days become an academic program. Almost 80% percent students are attending to this program during their education. In near future, co-op will become mandatory part (100%) of education. To explore and establish our-selves as professional will be very difficult without co-op program attendance. The main purpose and motivation of this white paper is to inform our community about important & usefulness as well as the impact of co-op in present & future job market. Co-op helps to educate students about professional employment. On average, during a single year, student should have at least one co-op work experience. This program is open to all majors, and to both undergraduate and graduate students. Most of the industries & govt. agencies participate in this program.

5. Benefits of Co-op:
During university/institute education it is possible for us to apply for a co-op experience in industry or with a government agency. Such experience is valuable, because most employers want students with practical experience and often prefer to hire those who have worked with them through co-ops. Co-op offers the opportunity to:

• Earn money for college expenses.
• Establish valuable network for future reference.
• Gateway to personal and professional development.
• Receive college credit toward graduation requirement.
• Learn how can be report to our immediate supervisors.
• Build a partnership among the student, and the employer.
• Begin seriously thinking about future employment opportunities.
• Improve skill and knowledge applicable to respective career field.
• Increase responsibility accountability and independence on the job.
• Improve student's carrier decision-making ability and moral integrity.
• Improve and understand the relationship between theory and practice.
• Build greater degree of self-confidence that helps to find interest and goals.
• Learn effective resume, forwarding & follow-up letter writing and interview skills.
• Work on programs and with equipment those are not available in institute/university.
• Enable student to identify his/her strengths/weakness and acquire new technical skills.
• Learn how to work with colleagues & develop effective communication and team skills in a
professional atmosphere.
• Provide related work experience that integrates & explore theory whatever students learned in
classroom with practical application
• On average, over 30% to 50% of all Co-ops are offered full-time jobs from their Co-op
companies before graduation.

6. Pre-requisite of Co-op:In order to apply for a co-op experience in industry or with a government agency, students are eligible for Co-op if they are:

• Four or more work-term commitment from to the employer & student.
• Must be degree-seeking, pursuing either an undergraduate or graduate degree.
• Admitted in high school through graduate or professional schools, including technical and
vocational schools.
• Enrolled/accepted as a degree student (diploma, certificate, etc.) in an accredited institution.
• Taking at least half-time academic or vocational or technical course load in a high school,
technical or vocational school, 2-year or 4-year college or university, graduate or professional
• Most technology-driven companies are looking for a solid educational background, and also
want to see how students perform in the workplace before they offer full-time position.

7. Way to find Co-Op:There are many different ways student may find and attend to co-op program. Some of the useful ways are:

• Attend Co-op job fair.
• Visit Human Resource offices.
• Attend courses related to co-op.
• Build up good personal networking.
• Use career search database in Internet.
• Attend On-Campus Interviewing (OCI).
• Watch recruiting bulletin board in campus.
• Participate in the Candidate Referral Service.
• Make an appointment with co-op coordinator.
• Write, call or send email to contact employers.
• Register for co-op and attend orientation session.
• Select industries according to our specific career interest.
• Regularly watch at least once every week about co-ops career-related temporary jobs.
• Consult business directories to focus on specific career fields can help us target good quality
co-op programs.
• Touch Screen Computer center - A network of self-service information providers located in
most malls and human resources offices nationwide. Complete job announcements & job can
get from there.

8. Conclusion:Co-operative Education (Co-op) continues to be a strong recruitment source for industries and govt. agencies. There is a need to attract diverse and talented studentswith skills, which will be critical to the future workforce needs of the Industries &
Provincial/Federal Government. The arrangements for such jobs are developed under
the Co-ops Program. That program provides for work-study partnerships between
students, educational institutions, industries and govt. agencies. In fact, most
employers often hire candidates who have had a co-op or internship during formal
educational training. The value of participating in Co-op is twofold:

1. It enriches the educational process by giving student relevant job experiences.
2. It provides employers with an opportunity to take an active role in developing
their future workforce.

The overall intention of this white paper is to provide the initial motivation to our
community to move forward and adapt as well as prepare ourselves as potential
professionals in job market through proper utilization of co-op program & its practices.
Most of the topics we discussed are well known to all of us in different way. We simply try
to rearrange in a systematic way and hope this will be helpful to our community and no
doubt, this is really an important issue. We are quite sure; there are many experts in our
community, who can help us by providing more detailed valuable and useful information.
BPNetwork needs your help and active participation in addressing this issue.

Source: Bangladeshi Professionals Network (BPNetwork)

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 6