What to Do When Your Boss Doesn’t Seem Invested in You

January 18th, 2019


One of the most important aspects of your job is your supervision. Great leaders make time for their workers, provide detailed feedback, and show appreciation. It’s essential for you to feel recognized in the workplace because overlooked staff members typically experience low morale and decreased performance.  If you’re feeling like your boss is not invested in you, consider some small changes to help you feel like you belong.

Make Your Mark

One way to gain respect from your supervisor is to stand out in a professional manner. Prove your worth by volunteering for assignments or even innovating your own projects when possible. The more initiative you take, the harder it becomes for your boss to overlook you. Don’t hide if you feel like your boss doesn’t see your potential: prove it to them! Contributing to the team’s success will help you feel inspired to stay on and gain appreciation from your colleagues and your supervisor.

Stay in Touch

Keeping your boss in the loop is an essential way to mitigate any doubt your employer may have. If your boss doesn’t seem invested, frequent emails about your progress are a tangible way to measure your productivity. Your boss may be ignoring you because they are concerned you’re not being efficient. Sharing updates is a positive way to connect and keep your boss in the loop. The more you communicate, the less likely it is you’ll make an error.

Have a Conversation

Even if you don’t have an ideal relationship with your supervisor, it’s necessary to sit down and discuss your contribution to the team and your overall success in your position. The best way to understand your supervisor’s motives is to ask. Plan a one-on-one meeting where you can discuss your duties and ideal career trajectory and bring up your impression that the boss isn’t invested in you. Hopefully, a productive talk can ensue where your employer can discuss changes and mitigate your concerns. If not, it’s time to look elsewhere for employment.

If you need a new position, contact SmartTalent! As a top temporary staffing agency, we can help you find the right role immediately if you’ve decided it’s time to move on. Take the guesswork out of the job search by teaming up with our staff today.

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How to Sell Yourself During a Phone Interview

January 11th, 2019


Impressing your interviewer over the phone, where you can’t make a visual impression, can be challenging for any candidate. To sell yourself over the phone, you’ll need to be cool and collected, while also appearing vivacious and enthusiastic, yet not over the top. Sometimes the phone interview can be more difficult than an in-person interview. Here’s how you can impress a potential employer during a phone screen.

Be Prepared

No matter what your expectations for this interview may be, it’s important to treat this opportunity seriously. You need to dress sharp (to inspire confidence), speak clearly and concisely, and have all necessary information promptly at hand. Cover the basics: Set aside an hour for the interview in a quiet, private location. Take time to review your resume, cover letter, and the job posting before the call. We highly recommend printing a few copies of each of these documents to spread out in front of you for quick reference. You don’t want to get stuck trying to remember what months you worked in your previous position, or what skills the posting seeks. Creating visual reminders can be helpful and even necessary, so don’t get caught unprepared.

Be Aware

Have you ever had a conversation with someone on the phone talking a mile a minute, where you can barely understand what they were saying? Don’t be this person during your phone interview. Take deep breaths when you need them and speak slowly and clearly. Running away with the conversation does not impress employers. Monitor your speed and breathing, and make sure you’re not making any thoughtless mistakes – breathing intensely into the phone, chewing gum or food.

Be the Best

Remember, the guidelines for phone interviews are similar to those of in-person interviews: be the best candidate. Prove your abilities and demonstrate the experience that will make you a perfect fit for the position. Use personal anecdotes to answer questions instead of listing your skills. They’ve seen your resume, now it’s time to make it come alive. Impress your potential new employer by confidently and thoughtfully answering questions, and the in-person interview may be just around the corner.

Are you a job seeker looking to stand out in a field of candidates? Check out SmartTalent! As a top Washington staffing agency, we can review your job application materials and find you the perfect fit fast with our staffing agency. Take a look at our resources today to learn more.

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How to Ask for a Raise

January 2nd, 2019


Requesting a raise from your supervisor can be a difficult conversation. What if they say no? What if they offer you something insulting? How can you adequately prepare for the conversation? If you’re looking for a raise, there are a few tricks and methods that can help. Here are our tips on how to ask for a raise the right way.

Keep Things Professional

There are a few ways to ask for a raise:

DO: Set a specific one-on-one meeting time with your boss

DON’T: Bring the matter up casually in a text or email

DO: Look the part – dress well and have a clean appearance

DON’T: Ask during a stressful time period

If you don’t follow these basic guidelines, you’re starting off on the wrong foot and you’re less likely to obtain the raise you’re requesting. Treat your raise request as a serious meeting, even if you have a good relationship with your supervisor.

Practice Your Pitch

Rehearse what you want to say! Write down a speech, or some bullet points on an index card, and say it out loud a few times. This can be in the mirror, to a trusted colleague or even to a family member! Tripping over words is not a good look when you’re trying to prove your credibility.

Tell a Story

If you want to convince your supervisor it’s time to up your pay, paint a picture. People like to hear descriptive examples, typically in the form of a story. Instead of claiming to improve and saying you’re a great employee, show it. Give specific examples of your experience at work. If you recently pioneered your own initiative, talk about the steps you took to implement tasks. If you’re a team player, talk about your effective method of communicating with workers. Show why you deserve to be paid more for the work you continue to do for the company.

Looking for more ways to prove yourself on the job? Check out the resources from SmartTalent! As a top Washington staffing agency, we know how to improve your abilities and help you take your talent to the next level. Take a look at our resources today to learn more.

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Are Your References Saying Good Things About You?

December 27th, 2018

Often, you’ll be asked to provide references when you look for work. In these situations, it’s important to make sure that you ask the right people to vouch for you. Otherwise, you take the risk of someone actually giving you a bad reference – or an indifferent one – and hurting your job prospects.

So, how can you know who to ask to serve as your reference? Just follow these tips:

  • Ask someone you know professionally: References who know you personally aren’t going to give you the type of praise that you need to impress a potential employer. You want someone you’ve worked with recently, ideally in the field where you’re currently applying to work.
  • Choose people who you’ve had good experiences with: You need to make sure that your reference isn’t going to have anything negative to say about you based on your professional relationship. Think back over your behavior with a potential reference to spot any red flags you may not want a prospective employer to know about. If you were late on a big project at one of your jobs, for example, you definitely don’t want to ask that boss to be a reference when you’re looking for new work.
  • Make sure whomever you ask is familiar with your work: Anyone who is going to be a good reference will be intimately familiar with how you perform and will be able to attest to specific accomplishments. Don’t choose a department manager who you never had contact with just because they’re higher up in the company – the manager you worked with every day is much more likely to have specific accolades to share.
  • Provide your resume when you make the request: You want to make it as easy as possible for someone to serve as a reference for you. So, provide them with your resume and a little bit of information about the accomplishments you want to highlight so you can maximize the chance they’ll say the right things to bolster your application.

By making sure you find the right people who can vouch for your talent, you can maximize your chances of getting hired. SmartTalent can also help you to boost your career prospects by matching you with companies looking for people like you. To find out how our staffing professionals can help you find work in Kirkland, Fife, Renton, Lacey, Lynwood, Everett, and surrounding areas, give our staffing service a call today.

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Keeping Your Employees Motivated During the Holidays

December 20th, 2018

The holiday season is a busy time of the year. Unfortunately, it’s also a time when employees frequently become distracted. Your workers may be focused on festivities, eager for a trip to see family, or worried about fulfilling all of their family obligations – and their performance on the job can sometimes suffer because of it.

To help your staff stay motivated throughout the festive season, some of the steps you can take include:

  • Offering incentives for performance: If you want to give staff members strong incentive to work during the holidays, offer incentives to help them concentrate. You could promise an extra holiday bonus if your staff meets certain objectives, or could provide special rewards when specific milestones are met.
  • Providing designated time for celebrations: You want your staff members to form relationships with coworkers and to be happy during the holidays in order to keep motivation strong. Providing time to celebrate together as a team can give staff members something to look forward to, and can also help to boost motivation by making their time at work more enjoyable.
  • Offering flexibility in scheduling: If your staff members are worried about missing their kids’ holiday play or about how they’ll handle their impending visit from family members while finishing up a big project, they aren’t going to be able to concentrate on their work. If you have the opportunity to be flexible about when your staff members get assignments done or come into the office, give your staff a little bit more freedom to fulfill holiday responsibilities on their own time. Your staff not only will concentrate better when they aren’t so worried about balancing family life – but they’ll also be grateful to you for the flexibility, and are much more likely to stay motivated because of it.

SmartTalent can also help you to find temporary staff to help out for the holidays or new full-time staff members who will be excited about their jobs and able to focus even during times of celebration. Just contact our staffing service to find out more about how we can help you find skilled employees in Kirkland, Fife, Renton, Lacey, Lynwood, Everett, and surrounding areas.

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Is Your Boss Babying You?

December 18th, 2018

Is your boss micromanaging everything you do and not letting you perform your work independently? It can be frustrating to feel your boss doesn’t trust you and worrisome to work with your boss constantly looking over your shoulder. If you find yourself in this situation, some of the steps you can take include:

  • Understanding their insecurities: If your boss is micromanaging you, there’s probably a reason for it. Your boss may be worried you’ll make a mistake that reflects poorly on them or that you’ll fall behind and affect the department’s performance. Try to understand what concerns your boss has so you can look for ways to assuage them, such as handing in error-free work or turning in assignments before the deadline.
  • Finding ways to prove your worth: If your boss doesn’t trust you to complete projects on your own, it can be hard to show you’ll perform up-to-par without intense supervision. But, there are always ways to take on extra projects or assume some additional responsibilities where your boss may not be so hands-on. If you can show you’re able to succeed in one area without strong supervision, you may be able to get your boss to give you more freedom in other areas.
  • Encouraging your boss to delegate to you: If you want more independent responsibilities, sometimes you just need to ask. You can encourage your boss to delegate by watching for the jobs your boss doesn’t like doing or for situations where your boss seems overworked. Offer to take additional responsibilities on your own shoulders. When your boss sees that he can count on you to take initiative – and you relieve your boss of some tasks he doesn’t like doing – you can build trust and your boss may decide to give you more independent responsibilities.

If you’ve tried everything and still find yourself frustrated because your boss won’t stop babying you, it may be time to explore new opportunities. SmartTalent can help you to explore open positions in Kirkland, Fife, Renton, Lacey, Lynwood, Everett, and surrounding areas so you can find a job where you’re trusted to perform your job independently. Give our staffing service a call today to find out more.

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Asking Your Boss About Work From Home Options

December 11th, 2018

Working from home is great. You can cut your commute down to zero, be more available to your family, and potentially even get a lot more done. Plus, you don’t have to buy a bunch of business clothes and you can cook at home, saving money on food.

Unfortunately, not every company allows its employees to work from home. If the business you work for doesn’t already permit you to work out of your house, here are some tips for talking with your boss about work-from-home options:

  • Suggest a trial period: Often, employers are worried about saying yes to a stay-at-home arrangement because they aren’t sure how it will work out and they don’t want to feel locked in once they’ve said yes. You can increase the chances of your employer being open to allowing you to work from home if you suggest trying it out only for a limited time before re-evaluating whether it’s working.
  • Come prepared with a plan: You shouldn’t just ask your employer to work from home. You should paint a picture for your employer of what this would look like. Provide details on how often you want to work from home, how often you’d come back into the office, how you’d handle deliverables, and what meetings you’d need to attend. The easier it is for your employer to visualize a successful work-at-home arrangement, the more likely it is the employer will accede to your request.
  • Show how working-from-home can help the company: Working from home undoubtedly would be good for you, but your employer isn’t going to say yes just because you want them to and think working at home would make your life better. You need to explain what benefits the company would get from allowing you to work at home. If you think you’d be more productive in a quieter environment, for example, you can explain why.

If you’re looking for work-from-home opportunities, or for in-office jobs, SmartTalent can help you to find opportunities in Kirkland, Fife, Renton, Lacey, Lynwood, Everett, and surrounding areas. Give our staffing service a call today to find out how we can help you to find work you’ll love that you may even be able to do from the comfort of your own home.

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The Best Way to Answer “Why Should We Hire You?”

December 4th, 2018

Why should we hire you? This is a common question that you can expect to be asked at job interviews.  Of course, you want to make sure that the answer you provide is compelling – but how can you do that? Just follow these tips and you’re sure to impress the hiring manager and maximize your chances of getting an offer:

  • Tailor the answer to the job description: The company is looking for a candidate to accomplish specific tasks and bring certain desired skills to the table. When you’re asked why they should hire you, you want to focus on the particular traits they are looking for. Before you go to the interview, you should review the job ad to remind yourself who the company has described as their ideal candidate.  When you’re asked about why they should hire you, you can provide an answer that mirrors the language from the job ad and shows the employer you have the exact skills they’re seeking.
  • Show how you’ll provide value to the company: The company is looking for someone who will perform well for them. You don’t want to focus on what the job could do for you or why it’s the perfect position to advance your career. You want to demonstrate clearly that the work you perform will make the company more productive and more successful.
  • Provide specific anecdotes, not vague platitudes: It’s easy to talk about how you’re the ideal candidate, but it can be harder to show it. That’s why you want to be prepared in advance with stories of your past successes to show that you’re the person the company is seeking. If the company is looking to hire an administrative professional who can multi-task, come prepared with specific details about how you’ve done well before in juggling your time and getting everything done.

SmartTalent can help you to land an interview in Kirkland, Fife, Renton, Lacey, Lynwood, Everett, and surrounding areas so you’ll get a chance to excel at the interview and land the job of your dreams. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help you in your job search.

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How Often Should You “Take a Breather” at Work?

November 29th, 2018

Working too much can lead to burnout, so it’s important you take regular breaks. Not only should you take a few minutes during the workday to take a breather, it’s also important to take longer vacations as well.

Determining when to step away from your desk and take a break can be difficult, but these tips can help:

  • Pay attention to when your focus starts to wane. You can usually tell when you’ve had enough work and need a break. You’ll find your eyes start to glaze over when you’re looking at the computer screen or you start to get frustrated more easily when tasks you’re doing don’t work out perfectly. Pay attention to when this starts to happen to you and monitor how long it takes before you reach that point. Then, in the future, you can take a break a few minutes before you reach that burnout time, so you don’t push yourself to the point where you start to feel frustration.
  • Schedule regular breaks after routine work. Most people can only concentrate for a limited amount of time. In fact, there’s an entire Pomodoro technique which is built around the idea you should do work for 25 minutes, and then take a five-minute break in order to be as productive as possible. You can consider applying this technique to your own work. That way, you’ll always be focused.
  • Step away from your desk after intense tasks that require a lot of concentration.  Sometimes, work you’re doing requires a strong attention to detail or a lot of focus. In these situations, you should try to take more frequent breaks in recognition of the fact that the work is more challenging.

SmartTalent will help you find a great job where you’ll be motivated to work hard, but that also allows you the leeway to take breaks when you need them. To find out how our staffing service can help you find the right position to keep you focused at work, give our staffing service a call today. We can help you to find a great company to work for in Kirkland, Fife, Renton, Lacey, Lynwood, Everett and surrounding areas.

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Handling a Slip-Up at a New Job

November 23rd, 2018

Making mistakes at work is always upsetting, especially when you’re new to your job. Unfortunately, errors can happen even when you’re careful and vigilant. If you do slip up at a new job, it’s important you handle the mistake properly. Some of the steps you should take include:

  • Admitting the error right away. There’s a saying that the cover-up is almost always worse than the crime. This applies to mistakes at work too. Your employer will respect you more if you immediately own up to the error and take corrective action. Not only will your employer be less likely to hold the mistake against you if you bring it to their attention, but your employer will also trust you more in the future because they’ll be able to count on you to check your work and speak up if something is wrong.
  • Accepting responsibility. Don’t ever blame others for your error. Admit to your employer you’ve had a slip-up; acknowledge you were to blame; and apologize for making the mistake.
  • Explaining your plans to ensure it doesn’t happen again. Employers will be forgiving of mistakes – especially from a new staff member – if they are confident the problem has been fixed and repeated slip-ups won’t hinder productivity. When you bring the error to your boss’ attention, also come prepared with an explanation of what went wrong and how you’ll be making sure that a similar issue won’t develop in the future. This could mean indicating that you’ll double check your work more carefully, that you’ll ask questions before you submit work, or that you’ll do some studying up so you’re more familiar with the task that you were doing when you made the error.

 SmartTalent can help you to find a job where you’re able to use your talents to succeed so you won’t have to worry too much about making mistakes. Contact our staffing service today to find out how we can help you find work in Kirkland, Fife, Renton, Lacey, Lynwood, Everett and surrounding areas.

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