Author Archives: Marcus Robertson

How A Sample Resume Can Help Your Job Search

There are so many people nowadays that are struggling with writing their resume. Prospective employers like to see resumes that capture their attention. A sample resume needs to be set up where your phone will be ringing off the hook so much you become overwhelmed.  Most people that are looking for a job don’t realize what it takes to write a quality resume to get their foot in the door. They just write it and send it off, hoping they get a response.

When that doesn’t work, they hire the cv writer of a resume service.  This service is supposed to be top notch.  However after shelling out hundreds of dollars to impress, nothing happens.  You are still sitting by the phone waiting for a prospective employer to call you.  So much for that.  You just wasted lots of money for a change that never materialized.

What you should do is have a sample resume that you can work with.  Not just any sample resume.  You need one that can help you catapult to  the top of the list.  Having one is a good idea because you can copy that and get ideas about what you are going to say.  When they get the new and improved one, your phone will ring nonstop.

Getting your foot in the door is very important if you want be noticed by prospective employers.  

With today’s job market, competition is tight and very fierce.  So if you have one strand of hair out of place, you will be put in the discard pile with the rest of them.  That is not where you want to be.  The more your resume gets tossed to the side, the more you get discouraged.  It’s not easy to send out resumes after you have used a sample resume only to find out you’ve been rejected again.

Of course, you will need to keep an open mind about everything and know that your situation will turn around for the better.  Sometimes you may feel that you are doing the right things with the sample resume, but in reality you are probably missing something else.  One of the first things you need to do is ditch the status quo.  Even though you are using a sample resume, you still need to get rid of the junk that you don’t need.

Don’t you want your phone to ring off the hook?  

Why hasn’t your foot landed in the door?  You must focus solely on doing that.  Even with the sample resume, you may have to tweak some things and make some changes.  You can’t continue to do the same thing and get different results.  That is called insanity.  You are insane if you think that you won’t have to make changes to your resume approach.  You will have to march to the beat of a different drum.

You can make it happen and it won’t take you all day to do it either.  So stop struggling and learn to be one of those in the small percentage bracket that can turn things around for the better and soon you’ll be hearing your phone ring a lot!

The Cube has destroyed my dreams

In college, I used to have hopes and dreams of my post college world. What big company would I work for? What meaningful projects would I be involved with? What kind of amazingly interesting people would I meet? I would be working, but it would be what I wanted, and it would be fun. I’m not sure how everyone else would mess it up, but I would break free from the grind, and enjoy what I was doing, and look forward to getting up in the morning to start my day.

As a graduate with an IT degree, and some web knowledge I was ready for what the world had to offer. The first job was some low level web work in a small office. I had my own little corner. It was part of a double cube that I shared with someone in almost the same exact same situation. Things were shaping up nicely, and I assumed I was on my way to success.

Nothing achieved in my cube was that impressive, but that’s normal for a first job, right? You get your foot in the door, keep paying your dues, make a few friends in the industry, and prove your worth in general. Sooner or later, you would naturally move up some sort of ladder, and find yourself in a position of some worth. The things you said would matter to people within the company, and you would be able to make some important decisions.

I wish I knew how wrong I was. I’ve seen it work like that in the movies, but no, I was just wrong. For some people the cube is just a temporary stop on their path to something meaningful. Unfortunately, for many of us, it’s a very long stay in a place we’d rather not be, doing things we’d rather not do.

Having been a cubicle dweller for quite some time now, I realize just how hard it is to break free and move on to bigger and better things. It has become a trap, and a destroyer of my dreams. It manages to suffocate my thought, and extinguish my hope.

I sit here and wonder how it all went wrong, and if I should embark on a life long quest to find the creator of the office cube, and kill his mom before he is ever conceived. Yes, perhaps I’ve seen The Terminator too many times, but I am driven to this level of thought by the cube induced insanity.

The only thing that keeps me going is the fact that I see lots of other people going through the same thing. I used to think that a cube was a transitory phase of your work history. A step on the way to greatness. After meeting several 50+ year old co workers also trapped in the cube, I now realize that I’m not special. Most jobs are in a cube. There’s just not enough space for everyone to have an office, so only the top few get one.

A cubicle is not always temporary, sometimes that’s just the way it is. You have a cube job. Your dreams of an office with an actual door are now gone. You’d better get used to it, and learn to deal with your tiny surroundings. The cubicle now owns you, and your dreams will be reshaped and bent to the will of 3 little walls.

Office Politics, just do it!

Whether you realize it or not, doing an excellent job, and moving up the food chain within your company often have no connection with each other. You would think that exceeding expectations, and always getting the job done would be enough to gain the favor of the higher ups. Unfortunately, most of the time, the final ingredient needed for success is a little bit of office politics.

If you’ve never heard the term before, go ask the guy in your office who is always trying to be near the big wigs and talk to them…about anything. He know’s exactly what office politics are all about. Basically, work itself it not enough to get noticed. Sometimes, you basically just need people to like you, which often involves having somewhat fabricated conversations, just so they know who you are.

This sounds somewhat ridiculous, as far as helping out with your success is concerned. Just think about it for a minute though. If there is an open position that you’re hoping to be considered for…and there’s an equally qualified guy in your office going for the same spot, chances are they’ll hire the guy they are more friendly with. Sad but true. There’s no playoffs when it comes to this sort of thing, just a bit of very casual favoritism.

So how to go about doing this? It’s really not that hard. It’s more of making a point to not just ignore social situations. You’d be surprised how far dropping a “Good morning” at the coffee machine can take you. Or a quick little “Ahhh Friday” while waiting for the elevator. As insanely simple as that sounds, that can really be all it takes for someone to remember you as a nice guy.

Taking it one step further, don’t be so quick to just ignore any social events. Someone you know in the office is having drinks for their birthday, or a going away party? Just head on over and grab a few. You might just talk to a few friends, or you might accidentally rub some elbows with your boss etc. Just having your face somewhat recognizable by the upper brass is a good thing. It certainly can’t hurt you…as long as you’re not the guy that shows up and has WAY too many drinks, and makes a fool of himself.

So the next time you’re crossing paths with a big wig, or some event presents itself, just get in there and toss a few simple words out! A few simple comments may be all it takes for you to stand out above a sea of similar employees stuffed in a cube.

Friday, A Love Letter

I love Friday. There I said it. Sometimes even the most obvious fact needs to be said out loud. After all….I’m talking about Friday here! I know every one of you out there loves Friday just as much as I do. I usually don’t like sharing things to this extent, but I will make an exception for the benefit of office workers everywhere and allow you all to love the one I hold closest to my heart.

Everyone has had one of those weeks where everything was going wrong, taking longer than expected, getting on your nerves and just destroying all of the joy in life. It seems hopeless, like there is no way for your misery to end. We’ve all been there, and we’ve all made it through. Why? Because everyone knows from early on in life that no matter how miserable your week is, you’ll eventually hit Friday. It serves as a beacon in the night, guiding you through the darkness. Once that whistle blows, you’re off the clock and freedom is yours!

Not only does Friday give you some motivation to make it through the work week, it’s also the most understanding of days. Maybe you went out on Thursday night, and have a killer hangover. That’s okay, because Friday understands. Maybe you’re thinking about an upcoming concert on Saturday and have already mentally checked out for the week. That’s fine, Friday never expects too much out of you anyway. Friday even has a lot of clout in the business world, influencing managers and bosses everywhere to be a little more relaxed than usual. Just think how often you’ve heard something to the effect of “Don’t worry, it’s Friday. We can worry about it next week”.

Any day that has it’s own slogan has got to be a good one. You never hear anyone say TGIM (Thank God It’s Monday), it’s TGIF! People love this day so much, they even started a restaurant chain named after that slogan: TGI Friday’s. Just think about that for a second. Some people were going to start a restaurant, and it came time to pick the name. They sat around, and thought “Let just make it easy, and name it something that is impossible not to love…something about Friday…we can’t lose!”

So the next time you find yourself crammed in a cube working on boring things that don’t interest you just so you can pay your rent, just take a second and think of Friday. You know it’ll always be there, waiting and ready to give you some much needed relaxation.

In closing, I find that I am moved to write Friday a poem. I’ll give it a fitting, clever name…how about “Friday, A Poem”

The week is young, and the pain it starts,

As if Monday’s only purpose is to blacken our hearts;

Forever it goes, the work never ending,

A happy employee, but always pretending;

Will it end before I meet my grave,

A whisper of encouragement, ‘Just Be Brave’;

From where did it come, a voice far away,

But then I realize, it came from Friday;

A simple reminder that I’m strong enough to survive,

And make it until the weekend, when my soul may thrive;

Thank you Friday, for guiding me through,

No other way to say it, I truly love you.

Fear of Failure

Several months ago, I was interviewed about a book for a radio show, “Top of Your Game.” One of the things the host asked me to talk about was my near-death experience in December 2008. She wanted to know if the conviction to change my life coming away from it was constant or if it faded in time. I told her that it wasn’t an either-or scenario, but more a pendulum swing between the conviction to step out and the fear of doing so. After all, experiencing fear is part of being human; it can’t be avoided. At the same time, I know that reverting back to hiding in my comfort zone isn’t an option. Therefore, it has really been a matter of knowing what to do with fears, such that they don’t get the better of me.

I bet you have experienced the fear of failing, haven’t you? After all, isn’t it why so many of us choose the status quo over going after a big dream? But, what if the fear of failure is just a disguise for the fear of success? What if the real culprit is that, deep down, we’re terrified of not being able to stretch and grow (fast enough) to contain the big success we’re called to step into? Isn’t it why so many of us unknowingly self-sabotage in order to return to our comfort zone? Isn’t it why we procrastinate and allow ourselves to be distracted from a big goal that scares us?

You may ask, what difference does the label make? Fear is fear, isn’t it? Well, I beg to differ. The awareness you bring to the nature of your fear makes a world of difference. Just humor me for a moment. Think of where you are in life right now as your baseline for success; however you choose to define success. Whether or not you see yourself as objectively successful, your current status establishes your success baseline going forward. If what calls to you and pulls you stretches your current comfort, you basically have the opportunity to increase your success. The fear of “failure” is then the anxiety of not knowing if you can indeed raise your success from its current level. So, the fear of failure is really the fear of not being big enough to be more successful than you are currently.

Are you with me so far? Good, let me offer the next thought: In the event that you do “fail,” you can always return to your current success level. Oh, yes, you can! You’ve done what you needed to do to get to where you are now. You know how to get here again if necessary. Chances are, though, that if you feel pulled toward something that stretches you to grow, there really is no turning back. But, it’s good to let the fearful part of you know that you’re ultimately safe as you step forward on your path to expansion and growth.

With all that said, by kneeling at the altar of avoiding success–all in the name of not wanting to fail–you aren’t giving yourself the permission to experience the possibility of more joy and passion in your life, to taste the sweetness of higher success–again, however you choose to define success. Instead, you agree to being limited by your current success level, even if it may be sub-optimal. You choose to remain in a rut or to tolerate familiar numbness. If you feel a nudge to step outside your comfort zone, see it as an opportunity to increase your success, knowing that you can always come back to your current state if indeed you so choose. It puts “failure” in a different light. Give yourself the permission to dismantle your fear of success–disguised as the fear of failure–and to raise your success level toward more joy and passion!

There’s no true failure other than not trying. Let’s not be afraid to at least try.

4 Quick Steps To Start Your Own Business

Having a successful business is not just for the rich and famous; any ordinary person would be able to accomplish this task, if he has the determination and the simple requirement of common sense! Of course we don’t mean that you can be Bill Gates over night, but there is no harm in wanting to get there. Reach for the stars and you’re bound to get somewhere. It’s time to break down those cubicle walls and start being your own boss and we are here to help you do just that.

Find the Perfect Space. This doesn’t mean you have to look for a high-priced office space in the most up market location. Try and get a place that is convenient when it comes to the area it is in and most of all, one that you don’t have to worry about breaking and making. The best way to achieve the latter is if you search for a serviced office because they are fully equipped and available for virtual office ; this would not only help you save up on the cost that would otherwise be spent on repairs and furniture, but it would also speed up the process.

Business Cards. This may not seem like an important aspect among zillion other things you have going on for you. However, it’s a great way for current entrepreneurs to put their business out there. Certainly you will have many functions to attend throughout the year. Therefore, make that an opportunity to give out your cards with the essential details; this will enable you to get a head start on the marketing factor, since most people would already be aware of your establishment and the advertising strategies would only build more rapport with the potential customers.

Construct a Financial Plan. This is a crucial point that you need to take into consideration. It’s important that you keep tabs on where your money is spent and for what reason. Being your own boss is hard work as there are multiple aspects you need to look out for; whether it is employee satisfaction, quality of your products or building customer loyalty. The best way to make good decisions about your purchases is to weigh the pros and cons of the required items. For example: if you decide on a serviced office as opposed to one that needs to be built from scratch, it’s pretty clear that investing or renting a place that is already equipped would be a wise choice, so that you can save time and money. You can’t sugar coat the business world, but what you can do is to follow your passion and don’t let anything get in the way of your goals. Make sure you’re well informed about the industry you’re stepping into, as well as the potential customers and your financial background. Keep in mind not to let the ‘boss’ title get in the way because that eventually determine employee satisfaction, which means increased productivity and thereby a greater profit. Be proud of yourself for taking the first step towards a long and prosperous journey; do what is right even if it seems like it’s going to take forever and most importantly, have control so that you don’t get overpowered by the gist of it all.

3 Keys To Breaking Out Of Your Money Story

We all have ideas or beliefs about money. More often, our beliefs about money were created from fear and we accept them as if they were the truth.

Issues around money have little to do with the concept of money.

That’s what I discovered when my husband and I got married. The comments about money we had each heard growing up were guiding our decisions and causing conflicts. After all, both of us can’t be “right” if our beliefs represent opposing views.

The comments, beliefs and ideas we are taught about money are based on a faulty understanding of what money actually is. By discovering the truth about money, you become more empowered in your relationship with it and all that it touches in your life.

Money issues are really just a lack of understanding based in fear and irresponsibility.

Three keys to breaking out of your money story:

Key #1:

The first key to breaking out of your money story is to face your fears. Decisions made on the basis of “feeling safe or secure” in circumstances where your very life is not being threatened are made out of fear.

Fear indicates that you have power to reclaim from someone or something. The more we rely on something outside of ourselves to resolve what we believe to be money issues, the more fearful or powerless we feel.

I worked with a client who used to say, “I can’t leave this job now! What if I took a new job and got laid off? My partner would get angry.” When I asked her what she was afraid of, she admitted it wasn’t the money but that she was afraid of how changing jobs would change their relationship.

Here’s this client’s realization about claiming her power:

“It’s like owning our desires, honoring ourselves and not allowing what we think or we perceive to be overshadowed by others. It is owning who we are.”

Key #2:

The second key to breaking free from old money beliefs is to understand what caused your current reality. Issues with money in relationships are the effect of something. They are the effect of your upbringing, your beliefs, your experiences and your choices. The same is true for everyone you interact with.

A woman I worked with a few years ago was miserable at her job. Even though she did very well, she no longer loved what she was doing. She kept talking about leaving the job but grew up believing you must remain loyal to “the man who pays you”. But the longer she stayed in that position, the more pressure she felt.

Her daughter had health issues and began to require more constant care. Soon, my client was forced to choose between her daughter and her loyalty. Although her father had been faced with a similar decision and had opted to stay loyal to his employer, she chose her family. She embraced a new reality- one that is more inline with her values and not with her fears.

“Life is a gift, and it offers us the privilege, opportunity, and responsibility to give something back by becoming more.” –  Tony Robbins

Key #3:

The third key to breaking out of your money story- the explanations, rationalizations and excuses you give to justify your stand on money issues- is to take responsibility for your role in causing the results you get.

I spoke with an entrepreneur recently who explained that her current financial circumstances were caused by the failing economy. During our Discovery Conversation, she admitted that her fear kept her from taking the necessary steps to achieve better results.

She had been avoiding the activities which would create those desired results “because of the economy”. When she became more fearful of what would happen if she didn’t trust herself to make decisions based on fact and not fear,  she also discovered that if you don’t yet have what you want in your life, money or otherwise, it is your responsibility to cause it to occur.

Take responsibility for your results and you are back in control.  By bringing your power back into the thoughts you have and the decisions you make, you are claiming responsibility for the results you get.

Your power to create something in your life is equal to the amount of responsibility you are willing to accept for the things that are in your life.” –  David Neagle