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Achieving a Better Family and Work Balance Makes for Better Job Performance
Are you constantly working after hours and weekends at the office? Are beginning to forget what your family even looks like? Many people find themselves in this predicament. Work seems to get more and more demanding with every passing day, and to stay on top of your game at work, you feel like you need to put in long hours. The flipside to this is that of course when you are at the office, you are away from home ? away from family dinners, play time and your kids? sporting events or school plays. You may feel like your hands are tied ? that no matter how much you want to be more involved with your family life, you have to keep working as hard as ever to make sure your family is provided for in the long run. The truth is, however, that you may be doing yourself a disservice on both fronts. Studies have shown time and again that well rested workers with well balanced lives are more productive in the time they do spend working. In the end, the best way to be a stand out worker at the office is to be fully involved and present in your family live.
But wait, you say, ?I?m working practically around the clock now, and everything still isn?t getting done.? However, maybe the problem isn?t that you aren?t working hard enough. Maybe the problem instead is that you aren?t working smart enough. Think about the way you spend you working day. Are you taking on more responsibility than you need to, instead of delegating tasks to others? Are you spending a lot of time chatting in the break room when you run for a cup of coffee? Are you procrastinating so that big projects require you to work all-nighters instead of spreading out the work? Keep a journal of all of your activities at work for a few days. You might be surprised to see how you are really spending your time and in what areas you could make improvements. Simply staying on task and delegating effectively could get you home in time for dinner.
When you have done everything you can to make your work habits as productive as possible, it is time to turn to other ways to balance your work life and your family life. Rule number one is the hardest one for most people to follow you ? draw clear lines of distinction between work time and family time. Family time isn?t really family time if you are constantly on your cell phone making and receiving work calls or if you are on your laptop for the entire family vacation. When you?re working ? work. When you?re with your family ? concentrate on them. The time you spend actually taking a breather from work will recharge your batteries and make you a better worker when work time rolls around again.
Next, you have to evaluate your priorities. Maybe working around the clock will help you make partner faster, but at what cost? Decide if seeing your daughter?s soccer game every week is more important to you than moving up the corporate ladder quickly, and make adjustments in your schedule appropriately. There is no right or wrong answer, but deciding where you priorities lie will make scheduling easier for you. With your priorities in mind, see what work options are available to you to help you meet them. If you want more time with the kids, see if your office offers flex time or part time hours to help you meet your family commitments.
Last but not least, don?t feel guilty about taking time with your family. Not only is this time important to your family, you can rest assured that the time out from the office stress will make you more productive when you return to work.
Let your Resume Speak Volumes for that Next Big Job Before you even get through the door of any job interview, there is already one document that has done the talking for you ? your resume. A good resume can mean the difference between getting the call of the interview and waiting by phone, and a well written, thoughtful resume can make you stand out over and above other applications with similar skills and work experience. Let your resume give you the edge on that next big job by following a few simple tips. When you sit down to write your resume, you need to plan it out before you start typing. There are two main formats for a resume: the chronological format, in which you simply list your job history, starting with your most recent or current job and moving backwards, and the functional format, in which you highlight your skills and experience rather than specific jobs and specific employers. The chronological format is definitely the most common, and many employers prefer this kind of resume, but choose the format this is going to show off your skills in the best light. If your work history is a choppy and a chronological format resume would only draw attention to that, use the functional format. The key is to choose the format that will give you the best chance of getting noticed for the job and to stick with the format throughout your resume. No matter which resume format you choose to use, the top of your resume should always include your name, contact information and work objectives. Name and contact information is pretty straight forward, although experts do recommend that if you have a ?gender neutral? name that you include a helpful ?Mr.? or ?Ms? to clear up any confusion. Your work objectives should be your career goals. For instance, if you want to manage a small team of sales people, then say that, so your potential employers know that you are moving in a certain direction with your career and not simply apply for jobs willy-nilly. After your work objective comes your work experience. List your jobs in reverse chronological order. Instead of simply creating a bullet pointed list your work related tasks, look for a way to frame all of your responsibilities so that they sound like you showed leadership and problem solving capabilities. For instance, if you were in charge of keeping the expensive accounts in order, say that you were in charge of troubleshooting monthly expense account records, saving the company hundreds of dollars every month. If you have a few blips in your work history, be clear about what you were doing in the downtime. If you were raising children, traveling, or in school, say that you were. If you weren?t really doing anything, put as positive a spin on things as you can without lying. Never leave gaps in your work history unaddressed on your resume. After your work history, it is time to list your education credentials. If you didn?t finish a degree, say how much college work you completed and highlight any coursework relevant to the job. If your college degree or post grad work is in progress, say when you expect to be finished. This is another place where gaps matter. If there is a gap in your education history, again say what you were doing in that time, referring back to your work history where appropriate. You can overcome these gaps as long as you don?t pretend that they don?t exist. Round out your resume by listing any awards and professional memberships you may hold. Don?t get into your hobbies unless they are specifically related to the position for which you are applying. Personal details like religion and race have no place on your resume and you are not required to disclose your age. Instead, let your experience do the talking.
The Importance of Written Communication (written communication) Written communication is just as important as oral communication. Of course, all communication requires a clear concise flow of ideas, and words that are easily understood by any reader or listener. Written communication is one of the most difficult forms of communication as writers are typically prone to write for themselves, instead of for their audience. It is important for readers to understand what has been written and why it has been written. Writing is very different from oral communication, because words are written they cannot be taken back. Communicating through writing is more concrete than verbal communication with more room for mistakes and misunderstandings. The slightest misunderstanding can cause chaos for many, so it is important to right as clear and concise as possible. This form of communication is defined as a clear expression of ideas in writing. The clear expression of ideas includes grammar, organization, and structure of an essay, book, article, or report. Grammar is a large part of written communication, and writers must always consider spelling, punctuation, writing style, and wording before displaying their work to the world. Proper grammar and form may have a varying importance for different writing jobs, and usually depend on the method of communication used for that job. However, it is always important to strive to use correct grammar, spelling, and punctuation. Most writers use spell check and grammar check on their computers to ensure that the grammar and spelling is suitable. Grammar is also a major factor when writing as a freelance writing and submitting work to an editor. Many editors will reject further submissions from writers who have too many grammar and spelling errors. Organization of a letter, essay, article, or book is also important factors of written communication. Communication should always have a logical organization that is easy for readers to follow. For the reader, it is much easier to read a paragraph with one common theme that relates to the entire work. Most writing requires a clear flow of ideas and proper transitions to indicate when a new idea is being presented. However, transitions are not often needed for pieces of writing that are clearly organized. Ideas should also be expressed in a manner that is easy for the reader to understand and recognize. Data in the writing should also be presented accurately to support conclusions and recommendations given by the writer. The structure is also important in a piece of writing. All writing is organized into five to seven sentence paragraphs that all relate to each other. The number of paragraphs usually depends on the work that is being written. For example, it is common for essay to contain five concise paragraphs that all relate to a common theme. Generally, essays begin with an introductory paragraph, followed by three supporting paragraphs, and ended with a concluding paragraph. The basic structure of a piece of writing is only the beginning of written communication; the words used and the organization of the work is important to the readers understanding of the work. In many cases, the style format, and content must be adjusted to the communication level of the reader. The ability to convey ideas to a certain reader are very important, and a key component of written communication. Like oral communication, written communication can be seen as an aspect of life that makes the world go round, and learning to communicate through written word has become a basic skill for most people. Communication is needed in all aspects of life, and although many people cannot write well, it is important to be able to communicate out loud and on paper.
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