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5 Tips to Get Yourself Organized at Work

If you struggle to stay organized at the office, know that you are not alone. Many employees have this challenge. Fortunately, there are simple ways to overcome this obstacle.

Choose among these five ways to stay organized at the office.

1. Declutter Your Workspace

Keep only what you need in your work area. Maintaining adequate space helps you focus and be productive. For instance, move, discard, or donate what you do not need or regularly use. Also, make it a habit to keep things where they belong unless they are being used. Plus, clean up your desk before you leave for the day.

2. Maintain Your Inbox

Check your email three times a day: morning, afternoon, and before you leave work for the day. Maintain folders for urgent, important, informational, or other types of messages. Be sure to respond as needed or delete when appropriate. Also, unsubscribe to the newsletters and other emails you lack the time or interest to go through. Plus, when possible, use the phone or a chat app to convey information rather than send an email. Then, you will receive fewer emails in response.

3. Avoid Multitasking

Focus on completing one activity at a time. This results in increased efficiency and accuracy. When you try to accomplish more than one thing at a time, the brain has trouble switching among tasks. This makes it harder to concentrate and make decisions, which reduces the quality of work.

4. Take Breaks

Step away from your desk at regular times throughout the day. Use these breaks to take a walk, read a book, or meditate. Also, use your lunch hour to fuel your body with healthy foods and talk with coworkers in the breakroom. You should return to your desk refreshed and focused.

5. Plan Your Week

At the end of each workweek, plan what you want to accomplish the following week. For instance, keep a broad overview of your meetings and the tasks you need to handle or delegate. Use this information to plan each workday the night before. Include the activities you want to finish and the times you will work on them.

Find a New IT Job

When the time comes to find a new IT role, include RightStone in your search. Follow this link to our job board.


Why a Work-Life Balance Is Important

 

Like many employees, you might have difficulty separating your personal and professional time. This may be especially true if you work from home and have a family. The desire to spend more time completing work or being with your loved ones means having less time for other activities. As a result, maintaining sufficient time to fulfill your most important work responsibilities each day while participating in family activities is important. This helps you feel personally and professionally engaged and fulfilled.

Apply these strategies to help maintain a work-life balance that is right for you.

Set Limits

Because there are only 24 hours in each day, carefully plan how you want to spend them. For instance, schedule a realistic amount of time for the tasks you have to get done. This may include checking email only three times throughout the day. Cut or delegate the activities you do not like or cannot handle. Also, put family events on a weekly calendar. Include these activities in your daily action plan. Additionally, learn to say “no” to requests that do not fit your schedule or interests. You need to maintain time for what matters most to you. Plus, take breaks throughout the day. The brain needs rest in order to retain information and function. Further, leave your work at work. Your personal time is for family activities.

Prioritize Self-Care

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle helps you reduce your stress level and accomplish more. For instance, focus on fresh fruits and vegetables and lean meats when planning your meals. These foods help you retain knowledge and build stamina. Also, set aside time each day for yoga, hiking, meditation, dancing, reading, or other activities you enjoy. Plus, make sure you get enough sleep at night. Put away personal electronic devices at least one hour before bedtime to avoid interference with your melatonin level that stimulates sleep. Additionally, schedule time to volunteer with a local charity once per month. This can increase your emotional and social well-being. Further, partner with colleagues to cover for each other’s work absences. Ask family and friends to help with childcare and household responsibilities when you work overtime or travel.

Find a Job Encouraging Work-Life Balance

Work with a recruiter from RightStone to find an IT job that promotes work-life balance. Start by visiting our job board today.


Leaving a Job with No Future

If you are passed over for a promotion you truly deserved, it may be time to find a new job. After all, you cannot stay in the same position indefinitely and advance along your career path. If you are not finding the room to grow with your current employer, then you need to begin finding a new one now.

If you continue to be passed over for promotions, implement these guidelines to determine when a good time is to leave your job.

Consider Your Last Promotion

You typically should be promoted after 18 months to 2 years in your current role. This timeline may be less if you discussed it before being hired. If you have been in the same position longer than 2 years and have no opportunities for a promotion, you should find another employer.

Look at Colleagues’ Promotions

Determine whether similarly qualified colleagues with the same level of experience as yours have recently moved up. Also, find out whether IT professionals in comparable roles at similarly sized companies have been promoted faster than you. If they have, then you need to begin your job search today.

Write Down Your Contributions

Make a list of all the ways you provide value to the organization. This may include routinely helping to finish projects or making material contributions that lead to success. Use this list to determine whether you should be at a higher level than you are. If so, begin applying to positions that fit your skills and experience.

Talk with Your Boss

Meet with your manager to discuss a promotion. Prepare to talk about your contributions, achievements, and qualifications to move up. See whether your boss supports your request or provides concrete guidelines to be considered for a promotion. If not, begin your job search after work hours.

Enhance Your Skill Set

Find ways to gain or enhance the skills required for the job you want. This may include engaging in additional training, taking a class, or gaining certification. This can be beneficial in landing your next IT role.

Find a Higher-Level IT Job

Let a recruiter from RightStone help you find an IT job in line with your skills, experience, and interests. See which jobs are available today.


Bored at Work? It Might Be Time for a Change of Scenery

When you read about modern work, you hear a lot about the dangers of overwork. Overwork and the stress that goes with it are huge problems for workers and organizations alike. But there’s one feeling that’s more prominent than burnout: boredom.

Being bored at workisn’t the result of running out of things to do. It’s an emotional state where the things you have to do no longer stimulate you creatively. Maybe it’s repetitiveness, or perhaps you feel unchallenged. Either way, being bored is common, and it’s not good for your career.

Are you bored at work? Here’s what to do next.

Why Boredom is Booming

Boredom is perhaps a greater symptom of modern work than overworking. Many things that used to take decision-making, skill use, and relationship building are now automated, particularly in industries like IT, marketing, and customer service.

There’s an app, tool, or streamlined process for much of our work, and with the rise of AI, machine learning, and eventually, quantum computing, many of the tasks left today will disappear.

Does Boredom Mean It’s Time for a Change?

Being bored at work doesn’t necessarily mean it’s time to seek out a new role. In some cases, it’s a sign that you can be doing more in terms of challenging yourself. If you’re bored, you could upskill, take risks, and set bigger goals.

At the same time, much of what it takes to remove boredom from the workplace comes from the top down. Hiring better managers, increasing collaboration, reinventing workflows, and ensuring the job is as great as the person who occupies it remains up to leadership.

However, if you work somewhere where boredom is part of the furniture and your team isn’t receptive to the idea of reinvigorating your days, then it may be time to seek out greener pastures.

Whether You Stay or Go, Think Carefully About What You Need

Being bored at work isn’t necessarily a sign that you need to get out of your job. However, a company culture that is uninterested in shaking up the status quo could be a sign that things won’t change (and even that your organization isn’t sustainable).

Before jumping ship, think about whether you’re bored and why. Then, think about what it could take to help you enjoy your job again. Once you have an answer, you’ll be better able to decide whether it’s time for a new role and even what that new role should be.

Looking for a Change of Scenery?

Are you looking for a role that will challenge and inspire you? Let’s talk. We’re ready to listen.Get in touchwith RightStone to learn how we place candidates with the right employer. 


4 Reasons Why Temp Work Might Be Right for You

Traditional job hunt wisdom says you should seek out a full-time, permanent role. However, you have more options available to you than looking for a permanent position.

Temporary or contract jobs continue to grow in popularity among both employers and workers. Temp jobs and temp-to-perm jobs offer more flexibility for everyone involved.

Should you consider temp work? Here are some of the reasons workers prefer a contract.

1. You Prioritize Company Culture

More workers find that company’s culture is the most important aspect of their day-to-day life. But it’s hard to get a true sense of a company’s culture from their website, through their interview process, or even after a week on the job.

If you want to work somewhere with a specific culture, you may benefit from temp-to-hire work. It will give you a better idea of what it’s like to work in the office after the sheen of being a new hire wears off, which will indicate whether you hang on after the contract or decide to move on.

2. You Want to Practice New Skills

If you are in a career transition or hoping to make a lateral move within your industry, you may benefit from a temp job.

Even after training, it can be hard to walk into a position without a few years of experience with your new skillset.

When a job is temporary, many employers are willing to take a chance on promising candidates without direct experience in the role.

3. You Want to Get Hired Quickly

Companies hiring for a permanent job take their time during the hiring process. They don’t want to have to re-fill the role in a few weeks or months.

Because temp work comes with an expiration date, there’s less focus on finding exactly the right fi. You may find that you go through a speedier hiring process, particularly as temp jobs are used to fill roles that companies need to fill now.

4. You Want to Try Out a New Industry

Ultimately, temp jobs are a great way to gain experience quickly. And temp jobs make it possible to experiment while gaining that experience. You can transition between companies or even industries with less effort than it takes to change roles in permanent positions.

With the right team behind you, you can find the best fit before settling into a permanent role.

Try Out Flexible Employment with Temp Work

Permanent employment isn’t the only option on the table anymore. And for some workers, temp work or temp-to-permanent contracts can be a better fit because they offer more flexibility and room to experiment.

Are you looking to make a career transition? RightStone can help you take your career to the next level.Get in touch to learn more about the RightStone 360 process.


Turning a Temp Job into a Full-Time Career

Everywhere you look in today’s job market, you’ll find temp workers. You find them in some of the U.S.’s largest and most successful corporations, and you find them in local businesses in your hometown.

Temp jobs now run the gamut of industries and roles, and they offer a springboard into a full-time career if you choose to use it.

How can you turn a temp job you enjoy into your next permanent position? Use these tips for making the jump.

Treat Your Temp Job Like It’s Permanent

In a temp, some people fall into the trap of treating the job like it’s about to end. While it’s true that your contract will run out eventually, this mindset can get in the way of turning your temp job into a successful hire.

It’s helpful to treat your job like an audition for a permanent role. Arrive on time and leave at the appropriate finish. Don’t take long breaks, and take care of your assignments. Going above and beyond to make suggestions for improvements or work along with organizational strategy will also demonstrate your suitability for a full-time role.

Take Initiative and Help Out, Even When You Don’t Need To

Temp jobs have defined responsibilities; you’re not expected to help out permanent staff or aid other departments. However, there’s no reason that you can’t lend a helping hand.

Help out others in your department, your boss, or those with who you may work in other departments. If nothing’s assigned to you and something needs doing, take it upon yourself to do it. Aiming to create value and acting in the best interest of the company helps you stand out from the crowd and help you prepare for a jump into full-time work.

Build an Army of Allies

Being good at your job and helping out your team is a good start, but they’re not always enough to get you hired, particularly in companies that prefer the flexibility of temp workers. In these spaces, you need extra help from allies.

The relationships you build will help you make the transition from the temp to an invaluable member of the team. If your boss and colleagues advocate for you, then all your other work and skills will shine.

Are you looking for a new role in 2021? At RightStone, we use a unique process to perfectly match candidates with clients by finding roles suited to your skills and personality. Get in touch to learn more about what we do.


How Long Should I Wait to Follow Up After an Interview?

You walked out of the interview feeling optimistic but naturally hesitant. What happens next? 

The anxiety of waiting by the phone (or constantly thinking you feel it vibrate in your pocket) is part of the interview process. However, you don’t need to sit and wait for the phone to ring for weeks on end. A follow-up call is in order, and it can help you prepare for what comes next.

So how long should you wait to follow up after the interview? Use this guide to help you plan your post-interview timeline.

Follow the Timeline Given by Your Interviewer

In today’s world, good practice dictates that HR will let you know a timeline at the end of the interview. It lets everyone know what to expect and puts everyone on even footing.

Whether you’re successful or not, you’ll know by the date given.

If HR or the hiring manager gives you a date, stick to that date before you think about a follow-up. If you don’t hear back by the date given, give them an extra two business days to get back to you, particularly in today’s climate where businesses have to manage changes at a rapid pace.

Tip: if you had a great interview and want a few extra bonus points, send a quick email simply thanking the team for their time and the opportunity.

What If You Have Other Interviews Lined Up?

Hiring managers will assume you’re actively job hunting, so there’s no pressing need to let them know about other interviews and deadlines at the interview or when you follow up.

The only time you might let the team know you’re being actively considered for another role is if you have another offer in hand and you want to use it to negotiate a better deal.

Otherwise, Wait One Week to Follow Up

If they don’t give you a timeline, and you haven’t heard anything after 4-5 business days, then you are free to follow up. If your interview is on Monday, wait until the following Monday before you call.

Usually, a rejection or confirmation comes quickly after you follow up.

Remember that HR doesn’t always have answers. They can only push the decision-makers so much. So, if things are slow at the top, then it will trickle down.

Use the Follow Up as a Chance to Reaffirm Your Interest

The waiting game is part of job hunting, but you don’t need to wait around forever. If you don’t hear anything for a week (or within the timeline), give HR a call and ask them when you might expect to have a decision. Calling will reaffirm your interest, and it will help you plan your next steps.

Are you looking for your next role? RighStone is placing IT professionals with quality jobs now. Get in touch to learn more about what roles are available.

 


5 Soft Skills Essential for a Successful IT Career

The IT industry wants technical skills and in-demand certifications. What candidates often forget, however, is the bonus presented by soft skills. 

Soft skills previously took a back seat to your professional expertise, especially if you offered a particularly hard-to-find qualification. Today, they’re not the core skills that get you hired. 

What are the most useful soft skills for a successful IT career? Here’s what RightStone’s top clients look for in a new hire. 

Communication 

We still think of IT roles as being highly technical. Part of your ability to do the job depends on your ability to communicate. From emails to proposals to leadership, your ability to communicate project parameters is at the heart of your success. 

Collaboration 

Twenty years ago, the right lone wolf developer could have the pick of any job. Today, employers look for developers who have both technical and collaboration skills. 

Being able to work with others is a core skill, particularly when you work remotely. Remote working requires you to work cohesively and allow room for creative thinking from all team members. 

If you can collaborate, you can get your product to market faster — and that’s what employers look for. 

Creativity 

Although learning in IT can be rote, you have the freedom to run once you get beyond the basics. Here, creativity can flourish, and employers look for creative problem-solving skills. After all, it’s not just your ability to create solutions that matter. You need to solve problems in a way that makes the most sense for your unique end users. 

Negotiation 

Your negotiation skills is a soft skill that not only helps you move up the career ladder but have practical day-to-day uses. You can negotiate with clients to coax them into solutions that make the most sense for their business. You can also negotiate with team members to help them make a deadline. 

And of course, you can negotiate your salary, project budget, and duties to help you win the job you want. Employers see your negotiation skills from the beginning, so don’t be afraid to show them off. 

Empathy 

Empathy is a skill that you need in any position if you want to work for, with, or in service of other people. Empathy not only allows you to work more closely with a team, but it can be your superpower by enabling you to take responsibility for yourself and your work. 

If you have empathy, more people want to work with you. 

Do You Have the Soft Skills Employers Want? 

Employers want to know about your experience, portfolio, and certifications. However, an impressive resume isn’t the only thing you need in a competitive job market. You also need the soft skills that employers want. 

After all, technical skills get a project started, but skills collaboration, communication, and empathy get the job done. 

Do you have what employers are looking for? Let us know. Click here to view RightStone’s jobs board


Promoted Over Your Peers? How to Lead a Team of Co-workers

You got the promotion. It comes with new responsibilities and new benefits. However, it also comes with a unique challenge. As the victor, you now need to navigate a new landscape of leading your coworkers, including a few who wanted the job you got. 

The transition from peer to leader all depends on your first few weeks. Here are our best tips to manage your teammates. 

Get Reacquainted as  Leader 

You didn’t get tapped to lead the team because of a fluke. It was your skills combined with the vision that helped you get started. However, your coworkers may not have seen what your boss did. 

Rather than force a transition, ease into it by meeting with your team members and getting reacquainted. Let them know what you see for the seem and ask them for their input. 

Don’t forget to get and reaffirm your co-worker’s pain points. Now that you have the power to make changes, hearing their concerns and suggestions again may give you a new perspective. 

Earn Your Influence 

You were one of the team on Friday, and now it’s Monday, and you’re the team leader. Your team won’t follow your influence just because you had a title change. 

You won the role because your boss believed you would be a good leader. Now is the time to start showing everyone what you can do. Work hard, listen more than you talk, and start working on earning your influence. It will make the smoothest transition into management. 

Set Clear Expectations 

As a team member, you could go to Happy Hours, laugh at the water cooler, and commiserate with your colleagues. While there’s no ‘us’ and ‘them’ when you become a leader, you need to set clear expectations if you want to lead. 

You now need to figure out how to be approachable and friendly without compromising your impartiality. One of the best ways to do this is to be as clear about your work. Be honest about what you’re looking for, and give useful feedback. 

Being open and transparent will transform your colleagues into a team that emulates your influence. 

Be the Leader Your Boss Knew You Could Be 

Managing your coworkers can be awkward, but there was a reason you got the promotion. Your superiors believe in your ability to lead. And that’s just what you need to do. 

While some things do need to change, you just need to keep being you and be as willing to work for your coworkers’ respect as you were willing to work for the promotion. 

Are you looking for your next leadership role?

RightStone is placing highly-skilled candidates into IT leadership roles right now. Get in touch to learn how you could find your next position. 


Questions You Must Ask at Your Next Interview

There’s one big job interview error that almost everyone makes. Do you know what it is?

It’s not talking too much or too little. The mistake has nothing to do with what you wear. No, one of the most pervasive misconceptions about job interviews is that the interviewer asks all the questions. On the contrary, an interview is a two-way street. Asking questions is the easiest way to demonstrate an interest in the role you applied for. They also help you assess whether the role and employer are right for you.

What questions get the best responses from interviews? Make sure you ask these questions at your next interview.

Questions About the Role

There are two types of questions you need to ask during your interview. The first relates to the role and the day-to-day responsibilities that come with it. These include:

  • Who do I report to?
  • What soft skills do successful people bring to the role?
  • What are the challenges of the role?
  • What did the past role occupant do to succeed?
  • How long did the last person to occupy the role stay in the position? Why did they leave?
  • What happens during a typical day?

The answers to these questions give you a good idea of what’s expected of you and what you can expect from the job itself. Not only will they help you distinguish the job from other roles, but they’ll give you something to think about if asked back for a second interview.

Questions About the Employer

Understanding your daily responsibilities is only have of the puzzle. As you know, the structure of the organization can help or hinder you in your job and down the road as you progress in your career.

What questions draw out the answers you need? Make sure you ask:

  • How would you describe the office/company culture?
  • What do you (the interview) like about working here?
  • How does the company promote employee and team development?
  • How does the role fit in with the company’s goals and vision?
  • How does the company evaluate success?

These questions help you identify the goals and values of the company and identify whether it’s a culture that suits your working style. You’ll quickly figure out whether the employer promotes from within, fosters talent, and prioritizes engagement without ever having to ask directly.

Interviews Go Both Ways

It’s a common misconception to think that a job interview places you and only you in the hot seat. For an interview to work, it’s important for you to interview your employer, too. You will learn far more about what they expect from you and the role, which gives you a better idea of whether you’re a good fit.

Are you looking for your next IT role?

At RightStone, we place candidates with clients that are right for you. Get in touch to learn how your next consulting job could be the start of a long-term relationship.


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