Career development: Experts on how to set expectations and exploit opportunities..

Career development: Experts on how to set expectations and exploit opportunities..

Employees need to think strategically, plan carefully and take responsibility for their career growth. Brinda Dasgupta has suggestions from experts on how to set expectations and exploit opportunities to progress towards leadership roles.

1. Have a Clear Vision
The first step in thinking strategically about your career is to have a clear idea of where you see yourself in the next five to 10 years. “It is important to internalise the importance of long-term career goals. Unless you are very clear about what you want from your career and where you want to see yourself down the line, you cannot really start to work towards your goals,” said Swapnil Kamat, CEO of Work Better Training.

2. Take Complete Ownership
Don’t outsource your responsibility to develop your career to your employer; take complete ownership of what you need to do. “Find your strengths, match them with your areas of interest and arrive at a personal development plan. After that come execution and course corrections,” said Aditya Narayan Mishra, CEO of CIEL HR Services.

3. Write a Plan
Write a career development plan, beginning with an overarching statement of purpose or a primary area of interest. “The plan should also go deeper into long-term plans which are timebound and specific. Also, it is prudent to identify threats or challenges that you might encounter so that you can work on ideas to mitigate possible risks,” said Mishra.

4. Plan for a Role
Kenneth Lean, vice president at Mercuri Urval India, said that it is important to distinguish between a role and a designation. “Always plan your career for your aspirational role and not designation. Speaking to someone who has been successful in such a role will certainly help,” he said.

5. Make Investments
You need to invest in yourself to take your career where you envision it going. “Investment in a mentor or a coach is very valuable for effective career development – such a person can give you not only industry insights but also required connections,” said Lean. Kamat said that depending on your career goals, you may also need to learn new skills or enroll in a professional course.

Recruitment process becoming fun with ‘Gamification’: Experts

Recruitment process is evolving from interviews and group discussions to a process of using game mechanics, that makes the entire process fun and engaging helping employers find the right candidate, experts say.

“Specifically in the recruitment process, companies have started using coding marathons, hacking events, complex problem solving against time, solving cryptic puzzles as part of their recruitment process,” TeamLease Services Business Head, IT, Stanley Deepak told PTI here.

He said, this helps them assess the engagement levels of the candidate towards their respective organisation, assess the competitive streak of the prospective employee to succeed, how well they work under pressure, how well do candidates align themselves to think out of the box and provide solutions to different scenarios.

Gamification as a concept started in Britain in 2002, but gained popularity only in 2010.

While Gamification was and is being used widely only in marketing and brand building, in 2012, companies began looking at this as a concept to identify engagement levels of employees within the organisation.

“Not sure when this was adopted in India but captive MNCs or product startups have been using certain aspects of Gamification as a process of identifying talent, as one of the elimination process in the recruitment cycle, introducing the organisation to the new employee, selling the role and the company to a prospective candidate,” Deepak added.

This is mainly used by the IT and hospitality sector for recruitment across all levels, however, it can be extended to all industry segments. It’s a question of adapting and embracing this as a facilitator for recruitment, he opined.

Going forward, he said, Gamification as a tool can be used more effectively across various HR functions like to assess training needs of employees, better employee utilisation based on their skills and capability, to minimise offer drop out of prospective candidates among others.

Echoing a similar view, CIEL HR Services CEO Aditya Narayan Mishra said, Gamification is a tool is being used in the last three years in a significant way by IT and technology companies have in the recent past, especially for entry and mid-level roles.

Get That Job!- BRIAN TRACY

Here’s a short excerpt, from my brand new report Get that Job!, that discusses unemployment in our nation’s economy and a few recommendations on how we as a country can transform our economy quickly to get Americans back to work. I hope you enjoy it.

The biggest issue in our country today is jobs and unemployment.  But the fact is that unemployment is unnecessary in our economy.  As long as there are problems that need to be solved, and customer needs to be satisfied, there are always jobs for the creative minority, like you.

The fact is that some people are never unemployed.  No matter what happens in the economy, they bounce back and have a new job within a couple of days, and sometimes two jobs plus a job on the weekend. In this message, I’m going to tell you what we need to do, and what the country needs to do to get everybody back to work again, back to those bad old days of 2005 when unemployment was at 4%.

First, let me give you three types of unemployment, and three things that anyone can do to get back into the workforce.

Three Types of Unemployment

The three types of unemployment are voluntary, involuntary, and frictional.

Frictional unemployment refers to the number of people who are between jobs at any given time, usually about 4 – 5% of the population.  For whatever reason, they have finished one job and have not yet decided to start another.

The second type of unemployment is voluntary. This is where there are jobs available for people but these people refuse to take those jobs because they are holding out for higher pay, or the jobs require that they do work they don’t want to do, or the jobs are located far away from where they currently live.

It is absolutely amazing to me when I read about people who were laid off from $120,000 a year jobs, and have been unemployed for two years, but they are still “holding out” for a job paying them what they used to earn during the boom of five years ago.

The third type of unemployment is involuntary.  This is caused when the government passes laws that make it difficult or illegal to hire people at salaries and wages that companies are prepared to pay.  There are now thousands of regulations and restrictions on employers that increase the cost of hiring someone.

The Cost of Hiring

The true cost of an employee is three to six times their actual salary or wage.  This extra amount includes benefits, social security, medical costs, supervision, facilities costs, vacations, training costs, and many, many more factors that are added on top of the basic salary.

Every time government passes a new piece of legislation in any one of these areas, it makes it harder and more expensive to hire someone for a particular job.

The Definition of a Job

And while we’re on the subject, what is a job, anyway?

A job is an opportunity for an individual to create value, to make a contribution to a company that is greatly in excess of what a person costs in salaries, wages, and benefits.

This means that each employee must contribute more than they cost.  In simple economics, if an employee is not contributing substantially more than he or she costs, the company must let that person go, or not hire them in the first place, if the company wants to survive.

Again, referring to simple economics, companies continue to hire people as long as each new person contributes more than they cost.  If sales decline and company revenues fall, the business has to lay people off in order to survive.  It’s not personal.

When you go into the job market, you are selling your personal services for the very highest price and under the very best working conditions possible.  When the employer goes into the job market, he wants to buy the very highest quality and quantity of services at the lowest price.  Salaries and wages are set by competition in the open market.  If you want to earn more money, you have to create more value.  There is no other way, unless the government hands out money to pay for jobs that create little or no value.

Three Ways to Get a Job

There are three ways that anyone can get a job.  The first is to lower the amount you are demanding for your work.  In times of recession, depression, market declines and reductions in business activities, if you want to sell your services, you have to hold a clearance sale, just like any store.  You have to quickly cut the prices of your product, your labor, if you want to find a customer.

It is amazing how many people think that their salary is determined by what they want to earn.  No.  Your salary is determined by what people can afford to pay you, which is based on the value of the contribution you are capable of making in the current market in comparison with everyone else who wants that same job.  You are in an auction, but in this case, you have to offer the lowest possible price if you want to sell your product against fierce competition.

Do Something Different

The second way you can get a job is by offering to do something different.  With the rapid rate of change today, the explosion in knowledge, technology and competition, many jobs have gone away, and are not coming back for years, if ever.

Move Somewhere Else

The third way you can get a job is by moving to a place where there are more jobs available for what you want to do.  There are parts of the country that are doing well, like Texas, where companies are moving and there are lots of jobs available.

There are parts of the country where there is demand for your skills, but you will have to pack and go there if you want to work.

Because of these three ways to get a job, nobody has to be unemployed for very long. Much of the unemployment today is therefore voluntary.
End of Excerpt


Source from

A Perfect 10: How To Increase Recruiter Productivity By 200%

A Perfect 10: How To Increase Recruiter Productivity By 200%

Here’s are some common laments of the typical recruiter:

  • “It takes too much time.”
  • “Finding top candidates is difficult.”
  • “Interviewing is hard.”
  • “Hiring managers are uncooperative.”

And they’re right. Hiring top people is difficult work. It’s time- consuming. It’s hard. But hiring is also supposedly number one. It’s the most important thing companies need to do to become better. Accounting is also hard, and that’s not even number one ó it’s probably closer to number seven. Developing new products is time consuming and often leads to dead ends, and no one who works there is appreciated. Selling is frustrating and demotivating, and salespeople are under constant pressure to perform. Managing a department or a company is also hard, frustrating, and time consuming. So go ahead and complain, but it won’t help. Hiring the best is still number one ó and if you want to be part of this awesome responsibility, you’d better accept that it will be hard, frustrating, and time consuming. But there are ways to make it much easier. Here are two things you can do to make your life as a recruiter less time consuming and more productive. First, stop spending any time at all with below-average candidates. Good recruiters can’t afford to ever spend a second with an unqualified person. Second, stop sending out average candidates or the wrong candidates to be interviewed. You should never send out more than three or four candidates for any assignment. How much time is spent doing searches over again? This is an even bigger time-waster than talking with unqualified candidates. Just these two changes will give you all the time you need to find good candidates. I’ll explain how to stop dealing with the “unqualifieds” in a future article, but the trick is to use technology, more admin support, and the latest pre-qualification techniques ó before the candidate ever pops up on your new candidate availability list. Doing this is actually quite easy, but keeping to the three or four candidate “send-outs” per hire requires more effort. The rewards, however, are enormous. Some recruiters will be able to handle up to 200% the number of assignments they handled previously. One of our clients reduced send-outs per hire from six to two for call-center reps just by implementing the following advice. Sending out more than three or four candidates for any assignment really means that either the recruiter or the hiring manager doesn’t know what they’re looking for. So whenever you go above four send-outs per hire, stop the search and figure out what the hiring manager is really looking for. This is where the recruiting manager must intervene. Preparing a performance profile describing the real job will help (see my articles on how to prepare performance profiles). This is the secret behind every efficient search: knowing the real factors that drive job success. With this, you have a legitimate chance to find some good candidates. But you’ll never need more than four.

             The 10 Core Traits of Success With the performance profile as the benchmark for top performance, have the recruiter and hiring manager rank every candidate on the following 10 factors on a 1 to 5 scale, with 5 being the best. These are the core traits of success that every interviewer must be able to assess if they’re given the responsibility of interviewing candidates.

  1. Self-motivation, initiative, and work-ethic as measured by conducting my one-question interview for three to four different team and individual accomplishments.
  2. Growth trend of team and individual accomplishments. Layout these three to four accomplishments on a time scale and see if the trend is up, down, or flat.
  3. Comparability of past accomplishments. Compare what the candidate has accomplished to what you need done. This is what the recruiter and hiring manager defined as successful job performance when they met after the first slate of candidates was deemed sub-par.
  4. Experience, education, industry background, skills. You need some experience for just about every job, but don’t go overboard. The bare minimum with great potential is often the best trade-off.
  5. Thinking skills. Job-specific problem solving. Ask the candidate how they would solve real job problems and then get into a real discussion of alternatives. This is my favorite interview question.
  6. Management, planning, and organizational skills. Every job requires some level of organizational skills, so make sure you ask about this during your questions.
  7. Team skills. This relates to Daniel Goleman’s “emotional intelligence.” It refers to the ability to work with others. I assign a 1 to those who are uncooperative or demotivating, a 3 to those who proactively cooperate, and a 5 to those who can persuade and motivate others. It is not measured by first impressions and personality.
  8. Leadership. This has to do with the ability to communicate a vision and then make it happen. It is a relative measure that needs to be compared to the size and scope of the job.
  9. Environment and cultural fit. This is critical. In your questions, make sure you know the underlying environment of the candidate’s major accomplishments. Then compare this to your own situation. This is not measured by first impressions and personality.
  10. Overall talent and potential. This is a combination of everything, including intuition and gut feel. But emphasize work ethic, trend of growth of accomplishments, and team leadership. This is not measured by intelligence, assertiveness, and verbal communication skills.

Recruiters need to rank their candidates on these 10 factors. Proof must be provided for all 4s and 5s. Use examples from actual accomplishments to justify the rankings. Then send this ranking form along with the candidate’s resume to the hiring manager. Make it a rule that hiring managers must disprove a 4 or 5 ranking before dismissing a candidate. Disproof is found by digging deep into a candidate’s background and demonstrating that what’s described is actually not as advertised. Surprisingly, in the process of proving and disproving a more accurate assessment often emerges. If it turns out that the candidates the recruiting department is sending out are weak, you’ve discovered that the problem is weak sourcing ó not weak interviewing skills. This is great information to know. You’ve just eliminated a major time-waster and improved hiring efficiency at the same time. Now you can go about improving the quality of each sourcing channel. We’ll discuss how you can do this in future articles. For now, start comparing the recruiter and hiring manager 10-factor assessment for the same candidate in combination with send-outs per hire by recruiter.

If you’re a manager, it’s important to always intervene if there is a wide discrepancy between assessments or when the number of send-outs exceeds five per assignment. It’s a clue that something’s amiss. This is how you can use metrics to manage yourself or a recruiting department. As a result, you’ll also improve cost per hire, quality per hire, and time to fill. What I propose might not be the most sophisticated means to measure candidate quality, but it’s something you can implement quickly. It’s far better than complaining and making excuses. The best performers are always improving processes. The best recruiters need to do the same.


Source from

India among most optimistic globally on hiring

NEW DELHI: Indian employers are the fourth most optimistic globally about hiring plans for the next three months but opportunities for job seekers are likely to be fewer than last year, says a survey.

According to ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey released today by ManpowerGroup, the sample size of 4,389 employers across India noted that a net 18 per cent of employers are anticipating an actual rise in their staffing numbers.

India’s Net Employment Outlook has now dipped by varying margins for five consecutive quarters.

Globally, the most optimistic hiring plans were reported by Taiwan where 24 per cent employers are bullish about their recruitment plans, followed by Japan (23 per cent) and Slovenia (22 per cent) in the second and third positions, respectively.

“The hiring outlook will move at a slow but steady pace as Indian companies gauge the impact of the ongoing global slowdown compounded by automation in the IT sector and talent scarcity for niche skills. However, there will be great demand for high-skill jobs for the new positions created by automation,” ManpowerGroup India Group Managing Director A G Rao said.

Rao further added, “Today companies are moving towards artificial intelligence and are best utilising technology to drive innovation in order to support the successful integration of new technology. In the current employment scenario, job-seekers need to up-skill and diversify into new areas”.

As per the survey, workforce gains are anticipated in all seven industry sectors during the coming quarter and strongest hiring prospects are reported in the services sector where employers report a net employment outlook of 22 per cent.

However, when compared to the year-ago period, hiring outlook has declined in all seven industry sectors.

Region-wise, the strongest labour market forecast was for the South, where net employment outlook is 29 per cent. Steady payroll gains are also expected in the North and the West, with hiring outlooks of 18 per cent and 15 per cent, while the outlook for the East stood at 12 per cent.

Globally, opportunities for job seekers are expected to remain similar to those available in the first three months of 2017, with employers in most countries and territories signalling that they are content to either maintain current staffing levels or engage in modest levels of payroll growth while they monitor ongoing developments in the marketplace.

As per the global survey of over 59,000 employers, companies in 39 of 43 countries and territories intend to add to their payrolls by varying degrees in the April-June time frame.


5 Ways To Challenge Yourself At The Workplace

5 Ways To Challenge Yourself At The Workplace

In a rapidly changing work environment, it becomes essential to keep up.
Almost every industry is in the middle of a major upheaval with skills being redefined in new ways,
and employees — no matter which sector they work in — should be prepared to face any kind of situation.
The best way to achieve this is by continuing to challenge oneself at the workplace.

ET has tips from the experts on how to move outside your comfort zone.

1. Start Small

The best way is to start with small steps and put yourself in uncomfortable situations.
“You could volunteer to do something you have not done before, or even try to lead a small initiative within your team.
Make yourself accountable to such results and constantly track these at the end of set time periods to reflect on the progress,”
said Vipul Singh, head of human resources and communications, ADP.

2. Work In A Different Team
Volunteering to work with a different department or team can be a good way not only to challenge yourself, but also get clarity on what it takes to be in that position.
“Most companies usually have initiatives where employees can spend some time in a different role, which helps them move forward towards career accomplishments.
This helps them understand new roles and challenges them to grow within these roles,”

said Singh.

3. Update Your Skills
Introspecting on your existing skillset is important in order to judge your strengths and weaknesses.
“While there are numerous professional courses to learn new skills, it is also a good idea to develop skills which may not be strictly relevant to the current job,”
said Partha Neog, cofounder, Vantage Circle.
“This will help in developing a fuller understanding of how things work and inspire you to develop better relationships across the company.”

4. Move Beyond Organisational Help
While most companies do have initiatives and programmes in place to help employees learn and do new things,
it’s essential to take ownership for your career path and move beyond just limiting yourselfto these.
“MOOCs (massive open online courses) have democratised learning and you can enrol in a few to pick up some new competencies.
Be sure to allocate regular time for such activities and look at new ways of approaching tasks,”
said Anil Jalali, chief HR officer at Capgemini India.

5. Learn From Failure
Every once in a while, when you attempt something new, you may fail.
“It is important to pick yourself up from failures and learn from them.
Don’t be afraid to experiment, don’t be afraid to learn from setbacks and use those lessons as stepping stones for the future,” said Jalali.
Source from::

Gold Prices

Gold prices today cracked below the Rs 29,000-mark by plunging Rs 150 to Rs 28,900 per 10 grams, taking a hit from sluggish trend overseas and fall in demand from local jewellers.

Silver also fell by Rs 180 to Rs 40,800 per kg due to reduced offtake by industrial units and coin makers.

Traders said demand weakness brought on by the end of wedding season at the domestic spot market kept up the heat.

Globally, gold fell by 0.22 per cent to $ 1,201.10 an ounce and silver by 0.35 per cent to USD 16.89 an ounce in Singapore.

In the national capital, gold of 99.9 per cent and 99.5 per cent purity dropped by Rs 150 each to Rs 28,900 and Rs 28,750 per 10 grams, respectively. The precious metals had gained Rs 200 on Saturday. The market was shut yesterday on account of Holi.

Sovereign, however, moved up by Rs 100 to Rs 24,400 per piece of eight grams in scattered deals.

Following gold, silver ready declined by Rs 180 to Rs 40,800 per kg and weekly—based delivery traded lower by a similar margin to Rs 40,350 per kg.

Silver coins too plummeted by Rs 1,000 to Rs 71,000 for buying and Rs 72,000 for selling of 100 pieces.