Sunday 29 December 2013

The Career Resolution That You Need For 2014

The New Year is coming up so soon! It is amazing how fast time flies. At this time of year, isn't it normal to look back at what you have been through the past year, and, of course, to try to think of some 'resolutions' that you so deeply intend to follow through the upcoming year.

Don't have a resolution yet?
If you really want to take charge of your career this year, stop delegating it to others. It is easy to start 'depending' on companies, institutions and clients that pay our bills. In this sense, we feel obliged to them and in a way, we feel as if we cannot really look elsewhere given that they are only source of income.

In today's fast-changing economy, diversification is key. Try to set aside one or two hours a week and start looking at new ways in which you can expand your income. You can also attend some conferences, seminars, or networking events in an area that interests you. Catch up with old colleagues and even, look at companies or other jobs that you can pursue in case your job doesn't work out, for one reason or another.

Do you run your own business?
Many of these activities will help you too. You might wish to spend some time to think about expanding your work, either by opening a new branch locally or perhaps, even moving to other countries. The point is to make ongoing efforts to expand and develop your business and, in essence, yourself. 

What you really should do as a resolution for the New Year is: save money! (I really need to start doing this!). Spending less will give you freedom - to be able to reject toxic work environments, bad clients and projects you would rather not take on. Meanwhile, it will enable you to accept projects that  may require a lot of your time and it will make it possible for you to back off from work a little and work on this project. 

Nikita Pisani at Muovo

Saturday 28 December 2013

The Gratitude Level Quiz

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Grateful people are often known to be happier people. Gratitude is all about showing appreciation to the people around you, things that you have and the many blessings that we don't take note of every day. Being gratitude at work is truly the best attitude to have if we are striving for a successful professional and personal life, and if we are aiming to make the lives of all the staff, be it the employers or the employees, more fulfilling and fulfilled.
Take this quiz to find our the level of gratitude present (or not!) at your organisation.

 What is your Gratitude Level? Take this quiz to find out!

The quiz below measures the level of gratitude in an organisation. So, think of an organisation to which you belong, and keep that organisation in mind as you answer the questions.

  1. My organisation always takes time to thank the staff during meetings.
  2. always

  3. The people who are successful in my organisation are those who only think about themselves.
  4. always

  5. I feel appreciated at work.
  6. always

  7. How often do peers in your organisation thank you for your work?
  8. often

  9. How often do you express thanks or gratitude to others in your organisation?
  10. never

  11. People in my organisation only thank each other when someone does something extraordinary.
  12. always

  13. In my organisation, everybody works on individual rather than team basis.
  14. always

  15. The leaders in my organisation encourage me to think about how others have helped me in my work.
  16. always

  17. I truly appreciate and take time to thank anyone who helps me at work with one thing or another.
  18. always

  19. How would you rate the stress level within your organisation?
  20. very high
Test your Gratitude Level!

The higher the score, the more grateful you and or your organisation seem to be!

Nikita Pisani at Muovo

Friday 20 December 2013

Is Attention the Secret to Emotional Intelligence?

Are you trying to read this article - but you are constantly checking your emails, speaking to someone (especially if you are in an office), or trying - but really trying - to FOCUS on this article?

It is something that has happened to many of us: we eagerly try to direct our attention at one thing, but then end up doing something or perhaps some things that are completely different from what we had had in mind.

Companies are looking for people who are qualified and those who make a direct connection between their skills and what the employer wants. It is still difficult (although not impossible) to transition to a new field. It is all about demonstrating that you can solve the employer’s problems and that you can 'fit' into the company’s culture.

To be successful in a job hunt, you will not only need to demonstrate an association between what the employer wants and your skills and accomplishments are, you will need to be able to tell your story in a way that makes it obvious you have the emotional intelligence/emotional quotient (EI/EQ – or soft skills) to get the job done.

With all of this research on emotional intelligence, it is time for job seekers to start paying attention. Your job search materials must competently tell your story and illustrate that you not only have the capacity to get the job done (that is, you have the specific skills, training and accomplishments), but that you have the ability to fit in and to bring that talent to the next — emotional — level.

BE the person who is willing to go the extra mile. Show, do not tell. Maybe that means you hold the door for somebody behind you on the way to the interview. Or you give a kind smile to someone cleaning the floors or simply sitting down at the reception. You may never know who these people are, and whether they might be good allies for you. 

Obviously, there’s much more to this than simply being courteous – emotional intelligence is complicated and difficult to pin down, but one aspect is being aware of other peoples’ needs. Look at your network. Do you have one? Are you a connector? Do you try to put people in touch with each other, just for the sake of doing it? If so, you are SHOWING that you care about people – that you are a team player.

What would your boss or colleagues say about you? Do they think only about your competence, or will they comment on your great attitude, how you lead by example and show everyone the same respect? Are you the one who pitches in and stays until the end, or are you running out to handle personal matters? Everything adds up, and how you behave will shape how people see you.

Courtesy of Greater Good

Nikita Pisani at Muovo

Monday 16 December 2013

Be Careful of these 3 Freelance Job Posts Scams

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Freelance work is great. You have the liberty to work from your own home, or wherever is most comfortable for you, set your own rates, choose the work that interests you the most (to some extent), while it conveniently helps you to fine-tune your professional skills. You will quickly discover, however, that many job listings seem either too good to be true, or, not true a lot. Chances are, that they are scam. The following are three popular job posts scams that you should be aware of:

1. 'Native English-speaking article writers: excellent quality articles required'

Translation: We pay $0.50 per 500 words. We’re aware that in countries where native English-speakers actually live, $0.50 will not cover the cost of the electricity required to write those 500 words.

For this reason, we’re looking to hire a financially secure trust-fund baby who has an insatiable desire to write keyword-rich articles about the new iPhone. Or possibly someone who has moved to Mali. And has no desire to afford to a plane flight back. Ever.

2. 'Very easy data-entry job'

Translation: You know captchas? Those annoying, messed-up letters that prevent our bots from creating Hotmail accounts? Yeah? Well, we need some cheap, real human eyes to transcribe those for us. Then we can get back to creating mass email accounts to send our important “news bulletins” about Viagra. Kthxbai.

3. 'Great opportunity for planning/urban design professionals'

Translation: We’re a large company that bid way too low on a massive project (like, ah, the Urban Design Proposal for Kabul, Afghanistan*). Surprise, surprise, we won the job since they couldn’t resist our rock-bottom price. Now we’re trying to outsource it to reduce our losses. This is the perfect project for anyone who is desperate and/or doesn’t know any better.

*This was an actual project. I didn’t just invent it for the sake of drama. Unfortunately, the job was deleted before I had a chance to snatch it up.

How you can earn money on sites like!

Now that you know which jobs to avoid, use these tips to win bids on the real jobs so you can earn more money:

Market your talents confidently

If you feel you're good at what you do, say so. In fact, say that you're EXCELLENT at what you do. Of course, make sure that you can live up to the brand by which you're marketing yourself. However, don't be shy to show your employer that you know and, in essence, are proud of, what you do.

Infuse personality to stand out

Show some personality, people! Sure, it’s important to act professionally, but have a bit of fun with it. Show your potential employers why you’re funnier, more charming and more reliable (and more human) than the guy whose computer responds for him.

It is good to be professional and to show that you mean business. However, it would be even greater to add some fun along the way, which makes you a more charming person in the eyes of your employer. In turn, you will likely become more reliable (and more human) than the guy whose computer responds for him.

Adapted from BrazenLife

Sunday 8 December 2013

Create the Success You Really Deserve...

Know your worth!

Have you ever went in for an interview, all enthusiastic, with a winning, beaming smile, standing up as straight as can be...only to realise (perhaps subconsciously) that your enthusiasm is superficial, your smile is not genuine, and in reality, you do not want this position at all.

Admittedly, it is something that has happened to,well, a large number of us. Applying for a high-earned position, one that can pave forward our career path (or at least that's what we hope)...going in for the interview, getting accepted...and perhaps ending up taking the position, in fear that there is nothing better for us or perhaps no more opportunities down the line.

Although it would be most wise to think about refusing an offer, learn how to say 'no'. But there’s good argument for turning down a new job: the role doesn’t meet your internal value, either in title, responsibility or compensation. Learn how to value yourself — and how to sell that value to hiring managers — and you’ll be able to leave the false enthusiasm, and frustrating positions, behind. 

Your value shouldn’t be defined by the buyer of your services; instead, it should be validated by the buyer. Your goal should be to present yourself as an undervalued asset that will flourish upon taking the next step. it smart!

Does this mean that you should never accept a position that’s a lower level or pay grade than what you think you deserve?

Absolutely not. The way you present yourself to the job market is through the narratives you can tell about who you are and what you have accomplished.

If you’re moving from a well-paid job with a good title to a lower-paid job with more responsibilities, the stories you’ll be able to tell about your impact will be greater.

If the role offers a larger opportunity for growth, your perceived setback may only be temporary.

Though many accepted lower pay, over two years, many former mid-level managers changed their LinkedIn profiles to include titles such as Director and VP.

As these companies grow, the role my former colleagues play in that growth is substantial and tangible. When they look for their next job, they have great stories to tell about their impact and abilities.

The value of anything is what the market is willing to pay. As the seller of your services, you owe it to yourself to find the right buyer who will meet you at your estimated worth.

We all know someone who left one company for another only to receive a substantial promotion in the process. But rather than see that move as the result of luck, we should consider how the individual presented herself as qualified for the newfound responsibilities.

Determining your own value can be hard, and there’s great opportunity to sabotage yourself through over- or under-confidence.

Article adapted from Brazen Life

Nikita Pisani at Muovo

Sunday 1 December 2013

And so it Goes: Criticism is Inevitable

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Criticism is unavoidable. We can either take it gracefully, or we might make the one who gave us his criticism (constructively or not), wish he had never done so. Before we start accepting or dashing back our criticisms, we should first distinguish between the different types of criticism that we might be getting.

So, what type of criticism?
Sometimes criticism is narrow and specific. At often times, however, it is vague, general, and has multiple things mixed up in it (for instance, some statements are accurate but others are exaggerated, including the tone, content, rationale, values). 
Once you understand the criticism in its parts and aspects, make your own unilateral decision about it.

A fair amount of the criticism that comes your way is flat-out mistaken.

Think of the many scientific theories that were initially scorned but have proven correct over time.
Knowing that you can handle criticism in these ways, let yourself be more open to it. Don’t intimidate others who have a criticism for you; then it just festers or bursts out in other ways.
Mostly, just recognize that criticism in its various forms and flavors (and smells) is a fact of life. So be it. Our lives and this world have bigger problems, and much bigger opportunities. Time to live more bravely and freely. It is essential to welcome criticisms from your mentors, colleagues and perhaps, clients or people you come in contact with. However, make sure that you filter all forms of criticism and identifying the person.

This article was first published by Greater Good

Nikita Pisani at Muovo


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