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9. A different kind of career assessment for adults January 14, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Assessments.
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I mentioned yesterday that I fell into Career Assessment Hell.  But, I *did* find one site from a laundry list of Career Assessments that didn’t send me into fits.  Instead of talking of “transferable skills” and the like, it starts from the beginning (hmmmm, would that be the Moody Blues version or ELP?  Nevermind – songs stuck in my head).

This assessment makes no assumptions about what you’ve already done, but focuses on what you might like to do and be good at doing.

Very refreshing.



8. Jumbles of stuff January 13, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Assessments, Motivation, Vent.
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I have to blog today? Ack. Need ice cream.

1. Signed the contact for reviewing federal grants. (Good news!)

2. While changing domain name servers, 500 files from my professional blog were deleted. (Baaaad news.)  Note – WordPress “export” function is NOT comprehensive.  Be warned.

3. Dug around and carefully reconstructed my blog and website. It works! (Good news.)  * Breathes big sigh of relief *

4. Surfed for “career assessment” websites and got sucked into stress-filled hell. (Bad news.)  I  let myself get suckered in and took an assessment.

Pencils ready – Which of these statements best describes you?  “Warm-hearted” or “cold-headed”?

Are you kidding me?  Blogging on a COMPASS-THEMED-BLOG, I have to state the obvious – these two are 180° apart and presented as such, makes you feel like a wuss or an asshole depending on which you pick.

And let’s be real here – where are the options for “cold-hearted” and “hot-headed”???

Compass Point – Some days are better than others.  All I know is that some days it takes an awful lot of work to make very little progress.

8 down, 352 to go.

Mini-Point: The Shifting Sands of Life and Work January 12, 2010

Posted by Lisa in Assessments, Mini-Point.
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Good article reflecting on lessons learned traveling across the Sahara, and how they can apply to work and life.

We live and work in a mountain-climbing culture.

We want to see the peak, map out a route, and follow it to the top-our metaphors for goal-setting and goal-getting our way through our lives and careers.

Real life, however, often defies this approach. That’s because most of our experiences actually resemble a desert. We get lost or stuck, and even chase the occasional mirage. From raising kids to plotting our careers, we find few clear routes or identifiable peaks.

From Lessons Learned in the Desert by Steve Donahue.

7. When Pay-it-Forward pays off January 12, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Networking.
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I got an email out of the blue yesterday.  I’ve been invited to be a scientist reviewer for a series of Department of Defense R&D proposals.  The government tracked me down and wants to pay me to tell them how to spend their money!

I can’t share the specifics of course, but it’s in my area of expertise.

(But ohhh, doncha just wish you could pick the program to review?!?)

All because I volunteered to review grants for the CDC a few years ago, and my (outdated) info was still floating somewhere in the system.


6. Posting little comments can lead to big results January 11, 2010

Posted by Lisa in Branding, Social Networking.
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Again, I’m avoiding the job boards unless the perfect job makes it through my filters and into my inbox.  (Ya see, I’d like to feel productive today.)  Part of feeling productive is making a decision and following through on it.  I will NOT feel guilty about NOT surfing job boards today!

So today, I focused on advertising myself online.  I put my hand in the air and a couple people saw it.


5. When perfection *shouldn’t* be Job 1 January 8, 2010

Posted by Lisa in Branding, Social Networking, Vent.
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The Sesame Street Word-of-the-Day is “Frustration.”

Yes, I want to do a page with the Social Media elements I discussed yesterday.  However, the mechanics are making me crave chocolate or something as equally attitude adjusting.

The specifics are tedious and boring.  But despite the fact that I pay for hosting 2 sites and have free WordPress sites, I apparently can’t get a 3-column blog-style template for my http://www.myname.com site without either 1) writing the code myself or 2) paying more money.  <vent removed for editorial courtesy>


4. Brand yourself online – Social Media Resumes January 7, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Branding, Networking, Social Networking.
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I got a massage yesterday and my mind wandered on over to online personal branding.  (I know, I know, a massage is supposed to be relaxing.  However <shrugs> your mind ends up wandering where it will.)

Tomato Clownfish by yours truly

I wondered, is there a way to create a single point of contact online which (professionally) shows the whole me rather than maintaining separate personal and professional sites?

The line between the two is blurring – in interviews we chat about common interests to break the ice – why can’t I present my common interests (like scuba and photography) in the same place as my resume and other content?

So researching today, I tripped across the concept of a social media resume.


3. Sowing the seeds – recommending somone else January 6, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Networking.
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Today I wrote a recommendation for a student who took a class I taught a few years ago.   He’s applying to a PhD program in Computer Architecture and Embedded Systems and wants to use me as a reference.  Turns out he got interested in Embedded Systems after taking my graduate class at New Jersey Institute of Technology, and he decided to focus his research in this area.

Cool.  🙂


2. Remember that negative crack I made about job boards? January 5, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All.
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Today I returned a call I received from a woman named Diane, who owns a placement firm.  Great conversation out of the blue!  But I’m chagrined to say she probably got my information from Monster.com.  After I relayed to you yesterday my lack of faith in job boards, the irony just slaps me in the face.  <grin>


1. The Spinning Compass – finding a new career in 360 degrees or less January 4, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Goals.
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I’ve thrown down before my feet a challenge – find the next phase of my life and career in 360 degrees or less.

Like many of you, I wonder if I’m doing the right thing.  Am I happy in my current career path?  No.  Do I feel I can do more and be happier?  Yes.

Time to reassess.

So rather than linearly spewing electronic resumes, sprinkling the right keywords for the job board resume parsers and keeping my fingers crossed, I’m going to try something different.  Since I don’t really know what the hell I want,  I’m going to look in all the unexpected places.  And I’m purposely NOT going to look for a job.  I’m going to explore one thing at a time until that big AHA happens!  And each day I’ll tell you what happened.