“Nothing opens your mind or your eyes like travel.” – Unknown
Resumes rarely feature a person’s travel history. Frequent travellers have a lot going for them, as you will see from this list. If you are a frequent traveller, make sure you highlight this. If you are an employer, you need to see travel as a definite plus. Here are 10 reasons why frequent travelers make excellent candidates.
1. They don’t limit their personal growth.
Frequent travelers are better positioned to grow as professionals and as persons. Several studies show that qualifications and experiences will count for about 25% of a person’s chances of getting a job. The remaining 75% will depend on their people and communication skills. Traveling provides an ideal training ground for that. They will know how to deal with people from different cultures and backgrounds. In an increasingly globalized world, this will become more and more important.Advertising
2. They don’t view change with suspicion.
Globetrotters have a wealth of experience, and this is especially true if they have actually worked abroad. They are much more likely to have a more cosmopolitan view of the world. They are much more open to change and will probably cope with adjustments in staff structuring, reorganization, or other management issues with much greater ease than a candidate who has never left his hometown or state.
3. They don’t mess up their time management.
Frequent travelers are adept at meeting deadlines and sticking to timetables when they have to organize trips and catch planes and trains. Time management skills are honed when the traveller has to see the main city sights in a short time or explore a country in one month. Calculating time, learning from experience, and setting smart travel goals are great skills.
4. They don’t shy away from learning another language.
Frequent travelers usually are keen to learn the language of the country they are visiting. This is the springboard to learning a language really well. If your company is dealing with international clients, it makes good sense to take a candidate with those extra language skills. They will be invaluable for communication, conferences, and networking.Advertising
5. They don’t mind moving out of their comfort zone.
Frequent travelers often have to face stressful situations that force them to be resourceful and to push the boundaries of their comfort zones. How many travelers have lost their way, had language problems, missed a flight, or had their passport stolen? This is a true test of how they keep their cool and how they get out of a tricky situation. It is an excellent training for their career because there will be parallel situations where the comfort zone has to be abandoned.
6. They don’t mind working on a team.
Globetrotters often have to collaborate with their friends if they have travelled in a group. This is crucial to how they will perform in a team in the workplace. It is always worth probing the candidate to find out how she contributed to group goals and collaboration on the trip. A good question to ask is what she had to renounce for the good of the group.
7. They don’t neglect their decision-making skills.
Frequent travelers have to make decisions all the time while they are on the go. They have to weigh up the pros and cons of transportation, accommodation, and assessing risks. They also have to be good at prioritizing. These are the same skills that they will bring to the workplace.Advertising
8. They don’t panic when there is an emergency.
Frequent travelers love to talk about when things went wrong and they had no money or were in a tight corner. It is here that it is worth listening to how they used their problem solving skills to get out alive. This is usually a good indicator of how they will approach an emergency in the workplace.
9. They don’t have health self-management problems.
Frequent travelers will have their health and well-being continually challenged. It will also be an indication of the precautions they have taken and the planning that went into that. There will be decisions to be made about vaccines, emergency medical care, how they organize their prescriptions, and their emergency health kit. Asking about how they planned for all these will be an indication of how they will deal with self-management on the job.
10. They don’t shy away from innovation.
Frequent travelers are curious. This is what drives them. Their appreciation of diversity will help them to be more creative in their approach to life, ethics, politics, and work. This will be a key factor when they are encouraged to be innovative in the workplace. Innovation is everyone’s job, and if your company is striving to bring in new products, services, or processes, everyone will feel empowered to pursue their creativity. The frequent traveller will usually fit the bill perfectly.Advertising
Let us know in the comments how traveling has helped your career take off.
Featured photo credit: Traveler young woman sitting on suitcase. Low contrast effect via shutterstock.com
Last Updated on July 16, 2019
7 Powerful Habits To Win In Office Politics
Office politics – a taboo word for some people. It’s a pervasive thing at the workplace.
In its simplest form, workplace politics is simply about the differences between people at work; differences in opinions, conflicts of interests are often manifested as office politics. It all goes down to human communications and relationships.
There is no need to be afraid of office politics. Top performers are those who have mastered the art of winning in office politics. Below are 7 good habits to help you win at the workplace:
1. Be Aware You Have a Choice
The most common reactions to politics at work are either fight or flight. It’s normal human reaction for survival in the wild, back in the prehistoric days when we were still hunter-gatherers.
Sure, the office is a modern jungle, but it takes more than just instinctive reactions to win in office politics. Instinctive fight reactions will only cause more resistance to whatever you are trying to achieve; while instinctive flight reactions only label you as a pushover that people can easily take for granted. Neither options are appealing for healthy career growth.
Winning requires you to consciously choose your reactions to the situation. Recognize that no matter how bad the circumstances, you have a choice in choosing how you feel and react. So how do you choose? This bring us to the next point…
2. Know What You Are Trying to Achieve
When conflicts happen, it’s very easy to be sucked into tunnel-vision and focus on immediate differences. That’s a self-defeating approach. Chances are, you’ll only invite more resistance by focusing on differences in people’s positions or opinions.
The way to mitigate this without looking like you’re fighting to emerge as a winner in this conflict is to focus on the business objectives. In the light of what’s best for the business, discuss the pros and cons of each option. Eventually, everyone wants the business to be successful; if the business don’t win, then nobody in the organization wins.
It’s much easier for one to eat the humble pie and back off when they realize the chosen approach is best for the business.
By learning to steer the discussion in this direction, you will learn to disengage from petty differences and position yourself as someone who is interested in getting things done. Your boss will also come to appreciate you as someone who is mature, strategic and can be entrusted with bigger responsibilities.
3. Focus on Your Circle of Influence
At work, there are often issues which we have very little control over. It’s not uncommon to find corporate policies, client demands or boss mandates which affects your personal interests.
Gossiping and complaining are common responses to these events that we cannot control. But think about it, other than that short term emotional outlet, what tangible results do gossiping really accomplish? In most instances, none.
Instead of feeling victimized and angry about the situation, focus on the things that you can do to influence the situation — your circle of influence. This is a very empowering technique to overcome the feeling of helplessness. It removes the victimized feeling and also allows others to see you as someone who knows how to operate within given constraints.
You may not be able to change or decide on the eventual outcome but, you can walk away knowing that you have done the best within the given circumstances.
Constraints are all around in the workplace; with this approach, your boss will also come to appreciate you as someone who is understanding and positive.
4. Don’t Take Sides
In office politics, it is possible to find yourself stuck in between two power figures who are at odds with each other. You find yourself being thrown around while they try to outwit each other and defend their own position; all at the expense of you getting the job done. You can’t get them to agree on a common decision for a project, and neither of them want to take ownership of issues; they’re too afraid they’ll get stabbed in the back for any mishaps.
In cases like this, focus on the business objectives and don’t take side with either of them – even if you like one better than the other. Place them on a common communication platform and ensure open communications among all parties, so that no one can claim “I didn’t say that”.
By not taking sides, you’ll help to direct conflict resolution in an objective manner. You’ll also build trust with both parties. That’ll help to keep the engagements constructive and focus on business objectives.
5. Don’t Get Personal
In office politics, you’ll get angry with people. It happens. There will be times when you feel the urge to give that person a piece of your mind and teach him a lesson. Don’t.
People tend to remember moments when they were humiliated or insulted. Even if you win this argument and get to feel really good about it for now, you’ll pay the price later when you need help from this person. What goes around comes around, especially at the workplace.
To win in the office, you’ll want to build a network of allies which you can tap into. The last thing you want during a crisis or an opportunity is to have someone screw you up because they harbor ill-intentions towards you – all because you’d enjoyed a brief moment of emotional outburst at their expense.
Another reason to hold back your temper is your career advancement. Increasingly, organizations are using 360 degree reviews to promote someone. Even if you are a star performer, your boss will have to fight a political uphill battle if other managers or peers see you as someone who is difficult to work with. The last thing you’ll want is to make it difficult for your boss to champion you for a promotion.
6. Seek to Understand, Before Being Understood
The reason people feel unjustified is because they felt misunderstood. Instinctively, we are more interested in getting the others to understand us than to understand them first. Top people managers and business leaders have learned to suppress this urge.
Surprisingly, seeking to understand is a very disarming technique. Once the other party feels that you understand where he/she is coming from, they will feel less defensive and be open to understand you in return. This sets the stage for open communications to arrive at a solution that both parties can accept.
Trying to arrive at a solution without first having this understanding is very difficult – there’s little trust and too much second-guessing.
7. Think Win-Win
As mentioned upfront, political conflicts happen because of conflicting interests. Perhaps due to our schooling, we are taught that to win, someone else needs to lose. Conversely, we are afraid to let someone else win, because it implies losing for us.
In business and work, that doesn’t have to be the case.
Learn to think in terms of “how can we both win out of this situation?” This requires that you first understand the other party’s perspective and what’s in it for him.
Next, understand what’s in it for you. Strive to seek out a resolution that is acceptable and beneficial to both parties. Doing this will ensure that everyone truly commit to the agreed resolution and will not pay only lip-service to it.
People simply don’t like to lose. You may get away with win-lose tactics once or twice but very soon, you’ll find yourself without allies in the workplace.
Thinking win-win is an enduring strategy that builds allies and help you win in the long term.
Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com