Posts Tagged: Value


Find the Perfect Career Coach and Maximize Your Investment

September 22nd, 2017

There are many reasons why your job search might not be exactly progressing. Maybe you’re one of those people who originally had success when job hunting. Then time passed and life happened. Maybe you’re a young professional who decided to take a few years off and take care of the kids while your spouse continued working. Now that you’re ready to jump back into the game (at least part-time) you’re finding that today’s job market has changed and that you’re not getting replies to any of the hundreds of resumes you’ve been sending out. Maybe the job you used to do doesn’t even exist anymore! Before you get tangled any deeper in a web of both your own device and the result of a downward sloping economy, it might be time to call in an expert – a career coach who is in tune with the latest ways to be successful in finding a new career.

Where to Begin

A keyword search on Google can get you started. If you live in Newark, Wilmington, Hockessin, or the New Castle, Delaware area, put your location name online along with keywords like career coaching services, career resources, and finding a job. A career counselor will help you by using a variety of career assessment tools (MBTI – Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator – Career Leader, SkillScan, etc.) to explore your aptitudes and work with you on applying the results to your job searches. A career coach will work with you on successful resume preparation and help you to understand career research resources, and also prep you on how to prepare for an interview. Today’s career counselors will review your presence on various social media sites (Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, blogs, etc.) so that you will present a positive picture for any prospective employers when they go to check out your online presence. In addition, they will provide job search support, and help you with strategies to overcome any obstacles in today’s very hard job market.

What Will A Career Coach Do For You?

A good career coach will do their best to suggest careers that are very closely matched with your life purpose. They will discover what your life purpose is by administering tests, having general discussions with you, and also ask you some specific questions about your goals. The best career coaches are very honest, and they will show you what your strengths are as well as your weaknesses. They will help you both with your job search and your resume, and they will coach you on how to perform in the job interview. Remember this, though – you can hire an excellent career coach, but if you don’t do the follow-ups and listen to the advice that is given, you will simply be throwing your money away. A career coach will instruct you on which job posting site is best for your particular career, and which staffing agencies, employment agencies, temp jobs, and temporary staffing opportunities can offer the most chances for a successful new career opportunity.

How the Gig Economy Is Transforming The Workplace

November 9th, 2016

The gig economy has become one of the most persistent, diverse, and influential forces on our current marketplace. Its has spread far and wide and has transformed the market in a variety of ways that may surprise you.

Employment OptionsSet of hands with tools for design. Architect designer for project drawings. Architect hands with pencil and ruler. Architects workplace. Technical project. Have Exploded

The biggest way that the gig economy is transforming the workplace is the way it has rendered full-time jobs less prevalent. While there are still plenty of high-quality life-long jobs available to those who want them, the gig economy has broken apart the necessity for this kind of job and helped expand the employment possibilities for a large number of people.

For example, those who possess specialized skills are reaping huge benefits from the gig market. They are moving from job-to-job in a way that helps him or her define their own career, maximize their profits, and create a more independent lifestyle.

However, even low-skilled workers, such as those who lack higher education and no repair skills, have used the gig economy to change their lives for the better. For example, landscaping work has helped many create a sustainable and engaging career which would have been impossible in a full-time-job-oriented mind.

The Exponential Growth Of The Gig Economy

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported that the gig economy has continued to expand at an almost exponential level. For example, in 2005, about seven percent of all workers were independent contractors or those who embraced the gig economy. They expect these numbers show huge growth when they survey again in 2017: perhaps as high as 15-20%.

More data gathered between 2003 and 2013 found that all industrial sectors had non-employer business growth i.e. gig jobs. Nearly one million new gig businesses or jobs were formed in that 10-year period, by far the largest of any other sector. Areas that experienced high growth included art and design, computer repair, information technology, construction, media, and transportation.

Why has the gig economy grown at such a high rate? It allows consumers to more easily match up with workers they respect. It also provides workers with a sense of freedom and independence that a singular full-time job cannot offer. While there are disadvantages (such as the dangers of inconsistent work and no employer-provided benefit packages), for many people the advantages outweigh the inconsistencies.

Employment Options Have Exploded For Stay-At-Home Moms

One interesting component of the gig marketplace is that it has helped stay-at-home moms break into a busy marketplace. Among the 43 percent of highly qualified women with children are choosing to raise their children at home, a growing number are performing gig jobs, such as online writing, transcription, and even tutoring, as a way of contributing to the household income.

In one study, it was revealed that the jobs like this not only help a stay-at-home mom contribute to the home financially, but provides her with engaging and enjoyable projects to keep a healthy work-life balance. It’s hard not to see that the gig economy is slowly and subtly transforming the marketplace in a variety of ways. Don’t be surprised to see the gig marketplace continue to grow in 2017.

9/11 and the Resilience of the American Worker

September 11th, 2013

911Guest blog spot by Kelly Murray, Marketing Coordinator

Twelve years ago, our country sustained a tragedy so shocking that it rattled each American citizen to their core. We will always remember where we were the morning of 9/11, and the horror we witnessed as two landmarks of international commerce fell at the hands of terrorists. Thousands of lives were claimed that day but in turn, millions of Americans were united under the strength of our nation and a vow to Never Forget those lost.

As the years go on, 9/11 etches its place into American history and its symbolism grows. I was only thirteen when the World Trade Center fell, and at the time I struggled to comprehend what this blow meant to our country on an international scale. I understood the degree of death and destruction that had occurred and felt the confusion, fear, and grief that any little girl would at the time. Years later, now a young working professional, when I look back on 9/11, I am struck by the resilience our nation had to have in order to pick up the pieces and move forward – not only emotionally, but as a political and economic entity.

When hit with unexpected hardship, whether emotional or professional, it’s difficult to maintain focus on the job and push forward. Of course, the events of 9/11 exceeded any difficulty one could have expected to endure. However, I think its important to note that as Americans, both our humanity and work ethic were tested on 9/11. The al-Qaeda chose to destroy a symbol of international trade and commerce (as well as a symbol of defense and national security, the Pentagon) that day. The burden of strength in the eyes of adversity fell on our political leaders, but also on the American worker: corporate executives, entrepreneurs, young professionals, entertainers, laborers – no profession or discipline was spared. We had to dig deep and continue working to carry each other through.

As an entrepreneur, CBI Group’s president felt this burden especially hard that day, when his company opened its doors for the first time on the morning of September 11th. And yet, he and his employees, like many, had to press on and focus on creating business, even if it felt ‘wrong’ or ‘inappropriate’ to do so during a time of such great loss. Each year at CBI Group, this day is met with a bittersweet sentiment: as a celebration of another year in business met with a solemn reminder of a national tragedy. Over a decade later, we continue to operate successfully and help businesses fill jobs, recruit employees, and develop their workforce – a reflection of the resilience of an entrepreneur and his country.

So, this article is simply a testament to the American worker, for rising up and pushing forward in times of turmoil. Since 9/11, our nation has struggled economically and suffered the impact of war, but we have pressed on. In the American spirit, our country has rebuilt (quite literally, the National September 11th Museum and Memorial opened in 2011) and reclaimed our place as an economic force.

To all those lost and affected by the tragedy of 9/11, we honor and remember you. As citizens, we will never forget what happened that day and the toll it took on our country. As workers, we will continue to push forward and keep the American Dream alive…a notion that drives the belief that in America anything is possible and anyone can find success – if they work hard enough for it.

Leaders Must Stand Alone

September 4th, 2013

Leading when times are good is easy! Leaders can walk around patting people on the back and giving compliments for a job well done. The work environment seems to have its own momentum. The heart of the business seems to beat faster and faster and faster. All we need to do as leaders is run alongside and just try and keep up. The team is confident and everyone seems to believe in the culture, the business direction, and you as the leader. Times are good…until they are not.

All of sudden the air gets still and the phone stops ringing. What you did yesterday does not work today. An employee is unhappy. A customer complains. We lose a new customer with whom we had a signed contract. They can’t do that! But they did. You’re off your sales forecast now. So, what do you do? Leadership confidence is real.

As leaders we must be careful where we take our energy from and derive our confidence. As leaders, it is a cautionary tale to take our cue from the external events around us. Events change every day. Confidence and leadership self-esteem are everything – and that must come from within.

Fear is normal. Worry is real. Feeling sorry for yourself is okay for a moment (with your boss or when your alone). However, great leadership is defined by what you do next. What do you that is useful with that stress?

It is easy to manage a winning team, whether it be a sales team, recruiting team or maybe your Tuesday night recreational sports team. Managing a losing team, well, not so easy. For example, I inherited a soccer team that had not won much in the last few years. I had to change the culture and instill values that the kids could believe in. I had to make changes. We had to work incredibly hard to improve our skills and our fitness. We have worked tirelessly for two years on and off the pitch. We are in shape now. We know the strategy and the plan. But we must learn to win. Every team – and every company – must learn to win.

So insert yourself here now. Are you coaching a winning team? Are you ready to do the work and make the necessary changes? Frankly, there is no such thing as an overnight success. But remember, it starts with you. Leaders must stand alone!

In Honor of Father’s Day: The Best of Alan Burkhard

June 12th, 2013

So everyone should find a way to do something nice for their Pop this time of year.  My Dad, Alan Burkhard, has whatever he wants that might be considered material or he will just buy it for himself – and besides, he is a real pain to shop for. Everything is too “something”.

My Dad is a many time entrepreneur who works at his craft relentlessly. His credos and philosophies are timeless. They are Outside-In®, a business approach we jointly trademarked and use in running our customer centered businesses. So for Father’s Day, I think I will share some of the “best of” comments and ideas that have made Alan successful:

The Best of Alan Burkhard

1. Try to close the gap between where you are and what your capable of. Start everyday with the goal of maximizing your abilities. Know that few people ever learn to use everything they were given to work with. This is where success, growth, challenge, and bringing your capabilities to life actually happen.

2. Know yourself. Do you have a culture of one? How can you work someplace if you don’t what you stand for? What are your values?  How do this fit into the bigger picture?

3. You have the most control when you give it all away. This applies to parents with kids or leaders with employees. So many times we just sit on a situation. We dictate. We direct. We tell folks what and how to do it. The best way to grow people is to give them say and control. Yes, you can provide them with the tools they need to succeed. Trust and accountability are the ultimate ways to control.

4. Be able to change.  There is nothing more relevant to grasp.  Change is hard to start.  But it gets easier, and oftentimes, the gain and the good comes down the line. But for all of us?  Learning to adapt and take advantage of change is a life skill that will put us ahead of the curve.  All types of organizations need change-makers. Those that do, often get the choice opportunities.  They make things happen for themselves!

5. Making decisions is about having the right information. Remember, getting the right information is the hard part. We want to jump to take action and try things. But really, solving problems and making decisions can be easy – yet, few have the patience. Everyone is too busy to do it right. Many quick decisions seems to be in vogue for leaders. Being busy and taking action is confused with productivity. The basics are in gathering the right information and in learning to interpret it.  Taking action is easy and convenient when you do the other steps well.

6. Let them live life and learn from it.  We all wear many roles in life.  We have to let our kids, our employees, our loved ones live life.  YOU have to let life happen to them.  Get out of the way and let them learn.  We all must take risks.

Josh and HallieNow, for my Father’s Day message to my kids:

Being a Dad is much harder then being President of a company.  At work, my job is to love everyone up or out of the company. At home, well, that is just not so easy. I am “stuck” with you for a few more years anyway in the same house.  After thinking about Father’s Day and all of the cards, special breakfasts, and nice T-shirts I have been given over the years, I decided all I really want is for you to read this and take from it what you can.

1.  You don’t yet know what your capable of. But work at it. There is always a gap here.  Work everyday to close the gap.

2.  Life is fleeting. Be happy right now where you are. Know that whatever you are doing right now is your life. Don’t plan or wish it away.

3.  Life is messy but go for it. I see you both stand on the sidelines so much.  Go to the party. Try out for the team. Make the phone call to go to the beach. Go on the trip.  Go have experiences good and bad.

4.  Find your confidence. I don’t know how to give you both confidence. But I know this. I did not have it at your age. At some point, it was like “turning a switch”. I think I figured out that others are not that confident. Or not that much smarter. Or that much better at whatever it is in question. But this comes with experience I guess. I promise you if you work at it you will be the most confident person in the room for the right reasons- you will have earned it.

5.  Have integrity and find it fast.  When you are alone in the middle of the night are you proud of yourself? Have you been honest with yourself and with the ones that care about you most? Trustworthiness and having integrity, means having a strength of character and making it matter. “Character is how you act when know one is looking.”  Be a character, but have lots of it.  And stand for something!  Personally, I think you have to fail here in order to decide this.  Having integrity starts to feel important and gives you an edge.  The more you do it, the less you ever want to compromise on it.

Even if the words above are geared towards one family generation to the next, I think this advice can apply to all in their personal and professional lives. By reading this, I hope you are inspired to define your personal philosophy. Create your own culture. Establish your values, or revisit them if need be. That is how you will find success (and happiness) in life. No matter how you define them, I believe that the points above will help guide you on your path towards achieving your goals.

Outside-In® Value Spotlight: Defined by 3 Customers

April 24th, 2013

We are Defined by 3 Customers. We consider everyone we work with a customer – whether you are a client, an employee, or a vendor. All 3 perspectives add value and are integral to the success of our business. -Outside-In® Pocket Guide

Outside-In Pocket Guide

Sometimes a value is perfect because it causes such debate and controversy. Defined by 3 Customers seems to be that value for our companies. The origins come from the desire to change the way company leaders and employees have typically thought about making decisions. And to alter the perception on who is considered most important in the business. Is it the vendor? Is it the customer? How about employees? Just depends on your point of view I guess. For me it was simple to think differently. My desire was to create balance and equality. To value all the same. And to use this sameness to allow the business to have balanced thinking. What would the impact be for employee customers? For our vendors? For paying customers?

In the past, I have worked with customers that put their stock price and shareholders first, and it showed in how they treated employees in big and small ways. In big ways, employees were numbers and disposable. In small ways, their needs, wants, ideas, desires and passions if at important seemed to come second. This is frankly still the case for many companies today.

The other common point of view is that there is only one customer. So don’t cloud the issue on this. A customer is a customer. An employee is an employee. A vendor/ partner is just that a vendor/ partner. I see the logic to the argument. But our goal is not clarity in words. We aspire to show the world we have a goal to be different and to value that difference in how we run our company!

By the way, this goes on all day long. In every facet of our business, in fact. There is magic in this message. I am often told and challenged about the vendor/ partner part. Why do we need to treat them special or go out of our way to stand out? When it comes down to crunch time and when you really need them they remember it. You take care of vendors by paying them promptly. By communicating effectively. By building unique relationships. Our goal is to pay our vendors in 10 days whenever possible. Some goals take longer than others.  As we grow, build the business and cash, this will become a guarantee!

Everyone has a choice to work wherever they want and for their own unique reasons. I want a place to come everyday where I can brag about our ongoing commitment to run our business while taking into account our three customers:  paying customer, vendors, and employees. Sure, we can overcharge our customers. And get away with it for the short-term. We can stop communicating with employees and tell people what to do. For a brief period. We can screw vendors by asking them to discount severely on one deal.  But they wont come back the next time. We face this ethics challenge each and every day. We have to find the equilibrium.

When you work in a growing, changing, stretching entrepreneurial company it is impossible to apply ironclad rules of thought to everything. This value has been challenged, and I have dealt with our imperfections. Try telling employees that you are Defined by 3 Customers when you need to discuss reducing headcount due to a recession. On the vendor side I have taken the calls from our partners when they feel shunned or ignored when we were not direct enough with our feedback on their performance.

This is not about the pursuit of perfection. You will not always make the right decision. This is the nature of decision making. We should all move to Vegas if we could get it right each and every time and win big.  This is about is your mindset. About having a belief that when you’re in a spot to make decisions or work on a project that you will think with all 3 Customers in mind as you wrestle with finding compromises and plans that treat all customers as if they matter for the long term!

Is Your Brand Working Hard for You?

March 27th, 2013

Sales is not an easy profession. By the very nature of the role you have to be able to deal with a lot of negativity and rejection. Most buyers say no. This is simply a fact. The job requires so much hard work – busy work, really – research, preparation, meeting planning, detail follow-up with emails and phone calls, all for brief “performances” with your prospect and customer.  Sales is 99% hard work, planning and preparation, and 1% actually selling.

There is so much we can do to be better sales people.  Reading about sales and going to workshops on sales technique is a must. Being prepared and planned everyday is critical. Many sales people sometimes wing it; they count on their strengths too much, and they don’t prepare to to maximize their time. They do too little in the way of the activities that are necessary to produce the volume of output their quota probably requires!

However, I have come to grasp that sales people can’t do it alone! Your company has to work hard on your behalf.  I believe a company must work hard on its brand, and that the brand must be an honest representation of what the company stands for, whats it personality and character are like, and what promise you can make to your prospects.

This is always a brand challenge for any business. Every business has a brand.  Sometimes the brand is intentional; sometimes it is the absence of a plan. In all cases your company gives the marketplace an impression of what it is all about and what it stands for.

In my experience, I have found that being an Outside-In® company matters. Our brand is about being all about the customer. Our brand is our culture, and our culture is how we view ourselves. You can call this our overall personality! This personality is how we help our sales staff add value and clearly how we stand out in a world that is terribly the same! We are definitely not the same. However, we are not different for the sake of being different.  Our difference is because we chose to turn ourselves inside out. We are what our customers need and want us to be!

Our culture and our values? 100% a reflection of employee behaviors that will best enable each employee to be the best they can be in the unique business landscape we all operate in today. Our brand is our culture.  Our culture is our values.

Remember, good marketing helps you amplify the truth, not pitch something that you wish exists. That is the difference!

Watch our video for our truth!

CBI Group Celebrates International Day of Happiness

March 20th, 2013

In America, the pursuit of happiness is a concept ingrained within the fibers of citizenship. The exact phrase is found within the Declaration of Independence and is considered synonymous with achieving the American Dream: “…certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness…”  But this aspiration is not exclusive to only those living in the United States, people the world over strive every day to find happiness in their lives.

To recognize this universal human ambition, the United Nations has selected today, March 20th, as International Day of Happiness, a day set aside to acknowledge that the pursuit of happiness is a fundamental human goal and is essential to global economic growth.

“On this first International Day of Happiness, let us reinforce our commitment to inclusive and sustainable human development and renew our pledge to help others. When we contribute to the common good, we ourselves are enriched. Compassion promotes happiness and will help build the future we want.” –U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, South Korea

In keeping with the year’s theme and to observe International Day of Happiness, CBI Group team members celebrated with a lunchtime screening of the award winning documentary HappyThe critically-acclaimed film takes viewers all across the globe from the island villages of Okinawa, Japan to the bayous of southern Louisiana to discover how different cultures define what makes them happy.

Organized by team member Caitlin Olszewski, viewers enjoyed popcorn and candy and were given complimentary bubbles to celebrate the day! Recruiter Mary Clay found the screening to be very formative and a timely addition to CBI Group’s Outside-In® Happiness Theme, which advocates employees seeking out their own personal happiness in order to become more Outside-In®.  “The screening shows how our environment allows us to take chances and be creative,” said Senior Recruiter Stan Yau, “It was very awesome in many ways.”

How will you spend International Day of Happiness?

Happiness Project: Be A Part of Something

March 13th, 2013

Guest blog spot by Kelly Hocutt, Marketing Team Lead

The Outside-In Happines ProjectBack in January we kicked off our company-wide annual theme, The Outside-In® Happiness Project, inspired by the best-selling book The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. As followers of the business practices outlined in Mastering the Rockefeller Habits by Verne Harnish, we choose to establish a theme to motivate our company to accomplish its quarterly and yearly goals. Our company’s goal this year? To promote internal happiness and in doing so, optimize our company culture, Outside-In®.

Another business practice outlined in Mastering the Rockefeller Habits is working in a rhythm. At CBI Group, we have built in some of those best practices into our team’s routine: Annual themes, quarterly kick offs, monthly leadership meetings, weekly team meetings, daily huddles and so on. All of these things are about communication and being a part of something. All of these things keep us as individuals aligned with our co-workers, leaders, teams, business lines and our company.

Today, I realized that all of these things, each of which may seem like just another meeting are much, much more than that. They make me feel a part of something. And that feeling contributes to my happiness. When I did my job search and found CBI Group, I was looking for that feeling. I wanted to wake up in the morning and be excited about the energy, atmosphere and vibe of what a company stood for. I can manage projects, be part of task forces and committees, design collateral and write at any company. But not every company offers that feeling that you are a part of something.

So today, I recognized one of my “commandments” or “secrets of adulthood”as Gretchen would call it: Be a part of something.

Being a part of something, in any aspect of my life makes me feel happier. I have a close family but sometimes I take them for granted. When I focus on daily texts, weekly dinners or outings and don’t let holidays come and go without focusing on traditions, I truly feel a part of my family – and that makes me happy. I’ve signed up for team sports, shown up for happy hours with friends and RSVP’d to party invites that come my way – but when I truly focus on the rhythm of my time with friends, I recognize the value of my friends and feel a part of something – and that makes me happy.

In the office, maintaining rhythm and recognizing its value makes a huge difference. It can transform a job from being “work” to being a part of something. And the cultural aspect? The culture reinforces that feeling of something greater. With The Outside-In® Happiness Project, we hope that our team’s personal happiness will reflect within our culture, and in doing so, improve our customer’s experience; and in being a customer-centric culture, that is what Outside-In® is all about.

What are you a part of? Does it make you happy?

Outside-In® Value Spotlight: Customer Centric

February 21st, 2013

We Are Customer Centric

Being Customer Centric is an attitude, a way of life, and our business philosophy. We are guided by our customers – thinking through the eyes of the customers at all times. For us, customers are at the center of it all, deciding what priorities we focus on and driving the change as we adapt and evolve.  -Outside-In® Pocket Guide

CBI-Pocket-Guide

The original Placers did anything and everything it could to make service the #1 priority for customers. That has carried over to CBI Group today. The root of being Customer Centric is really about putting the customer at the forefront of your daily thoughts. We all have so much to do each day, but is it with intention towards the one who pays the bills – the customer?

I like the idea of being competitive around service. Imagine if we all try to “one up” each other in our efforts to blow a customers mind. That kind of service is contagious. When you see others smile and practice it, Customer Centric thinking just becomes second nature. Service becomes easier, not harder. Imagine a world where every day you can make your company better. Imagine right now that you are 100% empowered to fix things around you. And that we want to really hone in on the fixes and hassles that can make us more and more Customer Centric.

I am always asked about the big stories of Customer Centric thinking, and I have one in mind to share. Many years ago, I was attending a sporting event that ended very late into the evening. In fact, as I was making the ride home some time after midnight my phone rang. This was a new customer who admitted to me that they had chosen to go with a competitor of ours. That competitor had promised them a recruiter to start that day (since it was after midnight) and they had just received an email that the company was unable to fulfill their initial promise. (You might think that I was being Customer Centric to even pick up, but all I did was answer the phone. The Customer Centric stuff comes next.) I started calling all of my leaders to ask if they might be able to help me help our prospect. Then it happened, Jamie O’Neill offered to go in that day.  Now this was no small feat! She had a team, a business plan, a full day, week, month of stuff to do. But we knew this really mattered, and we did it.

My memories around being Customer Centric involve the really big things in CBI Group’s history. But the best examples are the day-to-day ones. Seeing staff pick up a piece of paper off the floor. Watching a team member grab a phone call when someone is not available.  Customer Centric is really about executing the little things well. Customer Centric is our recruiters driving candidates around the weekends to show them schools, and nice neighborhoods and where the shopping mall is located. Customer Centric is when folks step forward to do volunteer work (recruitment or not) on their own time because they know it is the right thing to do and full of good karma!

I sure would love to gather more and different Customer Centric stories all of the time.  Get some new ones, and commit to getting this sort of thing in orientation and training for others.  We all want to know how to fit in.

Imagine a world where all of us wakes up and plans to be Customer Centric? That is how we will get better all of the time!

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