When to say ‘no’ to a new opportunity

turn down a job offer, say no to a job position, when to say 'no' to a new opportunity,We’re five years removed from the worst economic situation since the Great Depression. The economy has been improving steadily, with jobs reports generally trending toward the better. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the U.S. economy added 215,000 jobs in March. (Though the unemployment rate increased slightly to 5%. That was due to more citizens looking for work.)

All this means your job prospects are better, correct? Perhaps. But should you jump at the first opportunity that comes your way? Not necessarily, says J.B. “Bernie” Fiedler, of Segue Special Situations Group.

Fiedler, who addressed a recent meeting of the Professional Opportunities Networking Group of Greater Milwaukee (PONG), advises that sometimes it’s in your best interest to say no to a job position. A financial advisor by trade, Fiedler refers to the entire decision-making process as “investing.”

“Investing,” he says, “is a process of committing resources in a strategic way to accomplish a specific objective.” In this case, of course, your objective is to find the right job position.

His job-hunting strategy includes three principles:

  1. Is not a game to be won
  2. Is not a way to accumulate more money (meaning, that is not your primary goal)
  3. It is a means to an end

Fiedler stresses that it’s important to know what your values are. If you don’t, you won’t know what type of opportunity to pursue that will satisfy you. Plan on making hard choices along the way. One job position may pay well, but it may not be the best fit for you.

Did you ever stay with an unethical employer merely because the money was good and the work relatively easy? An employer of mine once engaged in what I felt was unethical behavior. I said nothing for fear of how that person might respond. In essence, I kept my head down and concentrated on work.

Much like with your finances, think long term. Develop a strategy to pursue your vision, Fiedler says, and be willing to give up immediate gratification for long-term success. (Note how sound financial advice works with job searching, as well.) Many years ago I took a position because I really needed the money. The opportunity sounded good initially, but during the interview it became apparent this wasn’t a good fit. Even so, I accepted their offer. It didn’t work out, and I was gone in five weeks.

Job searching is not done in a vacuum; your family is affected by your decision. You need to meet their basic needs (shelter, food, clothing). But also consider their intellectual and emotional needs. Primary among that is your presence. Will that position take you away from your family for extended periods of time?

Consider your legacy, Fiedler says. Most likely you want to provide for your children and grandchildren. Will you leave a lasting, positive impression?

As part of your overall strategy, Fiedler advises you to consider these factors:

  1. Where is the position, and what might you and your family have to sacrifice?
  2. The time, training and potential stress involved.
  3. Whom can you count on as advisors or mentors? How much experience do you want or need to attain for the role?

Then, ask yourself these questions about the job position:

  1. Does it fit your strategic plan?
  2. Does it provide the rewards you expect?
  3. Does the career align with your vision?

If you say ‘no’ to any of these, Fiedler says, “it’s time to reconsider that opportunity.”

“The biggest investment you make is a career,” Fiedler says. Choose wisely, making sure the firm and opportunity match your core values. Otherwise, it’s in your–and your family’s–best interest to say ‘no’ to that new opportunity.

Have you turned down a job offer that initially appealed to you? What caused you to change your mind? Feel free to leave a comment below. If you found value in this post, please share it so others may benefit from what you and I have written. You may use any of the following buttons. To contact me, send an email.

Tom Fuszard, content writer, blog writing, pr writing

 

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Use gender-specific pronoun when appropriate

writing tip, daily writing tip, writing classes, writing jobs, writers groupsMany writers and speakers engage in semantic gymnastics to avoid any hint (in their minds) of bias. One consequence is that the person often violates a basic rule of grammar. A perfect example involves the pronoun their. You might see (or hear) a sentence like this:

“A friend of mine needs new tires on their car.”

Subject(s) and pronoun(s) must agree in number. A singular subject requires a singular pronoun. Your choices are his, her and its. (Remember that its does not have an apostrophe.)

It’s obvious from the above example that only one person is involved. It’s also obvious that the writer/speaker knows the gender of automobile owner. There is nothing wrong with using the appropriate gender-specific pronoun.

“A friend of mine needs new tires on his car.”

“A friend of mine needs new tires on her car.”

We must rid ourselves of this notion that it is somehow wrong to use the pronouns his and her. They have their place in our language. Using the proper pronoun adds clarity to your copy, and helps you maintain high standards of grammar.

What examples of semantic gymnastics have you read or heard? Feel free to leave a comment below. If you found value in this post, please share it so others may benefit from what you and I have written. You may use any of the following buttons. To contact me, send an email.
Tom Fuszard, content writer, blog writing, pr writing

 

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Tom Hopkins’ How To Sell Anything program is still powerful

Tom Hopkins, How to sell anything to anybody, how to master the art of selling anythingA recent addition to my professional development is both old and new. Tom Hopkins’ “How To Master The Art of Selling Anything” is proving to be a very valuable training program. Although first recorded in 1979, his principles and strategies are timeless.

Its 24 sessions offer a comprehensive review of the selling process. Topics include handling objections, leading with questions, proper telephone techniques and goal setting. My favorite section is tie-down questions. There are several versions, but the basic one entails ending a statement with an affirmative question. The objective is to get a ‘yes’ or to draw out the objection. Some examples:

“Quality is important today, isn’t it?”

“You would like to retire and enjoy the better things in life, wouldn’t you?”

“This will add nicely to your investment portfolio, won’t it?”

Adapt this technique to your product or service, and you’ll improve your presentations immensely. Hopkins introduces us to six powerful techniques in this section alone. I’ve begun crafting versions of these for my vacation club business, and look forward to rewarding discussions with prospects.

As the title of his program indicates, Tom Hopkins’ strategies apply to any product or service. Among the audience members in his studio were a copier salesperson, a sales associate at an appliance store, and a rep for corporate jet manufacturer.

Professional development an ongoing process

I was introduced to Hopkins’ material in the early 1990s. Back then I was a sales rep for a suburban Milwaukee newspaper. In addition to attending one of his seminars, I purchased his “Psychology of Selling” program. A series of cassette tapes (yes, cassette tapes!), this training provides many fundamentals of selling. “Selling Anything” contains a significant amount of material I haven’t heard before.

Listening to “Selling Anything” is a part of my daily routine that includes reading books by Jack Canfield and other masters. This is all part of an ongoing professional development regimen. Good salespeople understand this. They know that learning never stops. Even those with decades of experience continue to invest in themselves. That’s what keeps them sharp and successful.

The owner of my vacation club purchased “How To Master The Art Selling Anything,” and made it available to her associates. As our manager, she understands the value of regular sales training. Having spent tens of thousands of dollars on her own training, she is eager to invest in her team.

Though some of the language Hopkins uses and items he mentions (tape player, for example) are dated, the principles are sound. The key with this or any training is to apply the material. You will gain nothing by merely listening to the audio program.

“How To Master The Art Of Selling Anything” and Hopkins’ other programs can be purchased from his website. (Incidentally, I don’t earn anything from this recommendation.) There are many good sales trainers to learn and prosper from. If you haven’t done so already, begin to invest in your professional development.

For additional valuable reading, see “5 traits of a good leader” and “Small steps can lead to big success.”

Is any of Tom Hopkins’ material in your library? (If not from Hopkins, perhaps other sales trainers.) How has it helped you? Feel free to leave a comment below. If you found value in this post, please share it so others may benefit from what you and I have written. You may use any of the following buttons. To contact me, send an email.
Tom Fuszard, content writer, blog writing, pr writing

 

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Accessibility, prompt response heighten customer satisfaction

Tis the season to shop, as retailers are noticing. An improving economy and a proliferation of smartphones are encouraging people to open their wallets. According to a survey by the National Retail Federation, more than 151 million people in the US stated they shopped in-store and/or online over the Thanksgiving weekend. If you were in a store or shopping mall at the time, you can probably attest to that. Another estimate put this year’s Cyber Monday (Nov. 30) sales at $3 billion, up 12% from 2014.

Like you, I have been shopping recently. And like many, I recently placed an order online, though through a retailer’s website. The incident offers some lessons that online retailers might learn from.

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Effective communication hinges on knowing your audience

Communicating effectively involves several important factors. According to Mike Thompson, these include taking ownership of the situation, staying focused, and knowing your recipient’s personality style.

Mike TThompson, a business coach with ActionCOACH in New Berlin, Wis., discussed these nuances during a recent meeting of the New Berlin Chamber of Commerce. He offers a different perspective on the art of effective communication: “True communication is the response you get.” Meaning, did he or she do or say what you hoped for?

One problem in business communications, Thompson says, is that workers don’t always take ownership of an issue. It can languish, with no action by the recipient.

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