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12 Indicators That You’re Working For a Great Company

12 Indicators That You’re Working For a Great Company

There has been a new fad rising among companies around the world. It benefits the customers, the employees and the management. This new popular trend is catching on from company to company and is spreading like wildfire. What is this new trend? It is the focus on employee happiness.

Great companies are changing the way they operate by developing policies to create a happy work place. The University of Warwick conducted experiments in a recent study that proved happy workers are 12% more productive. It is easier to work a company that treats you well, does yours? Here are some indicators that you work for a great company.

1. The leadership is honest, approachable and fair.

It is easier to follow someone that you think is honestly wanting the best for you, themselves and the company. They are there to answer any questions that you have and if they do not know the answer, they will find it for you.

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2. There is room for growth.

Room for growth can be with promotions or education for the benefit of you and also the company. There are some companies that are willing to give scholarships away, as long as it is for classes in the same field of work. Why are they doing this? Simply because it will help your credentials, your pay and their customers by giving them trained professionals.

3. There is open collaboration between everyone.

Occasional meetings to collaborate on what needs to be addressed between you and the rest of the office are important. Your voice is important to management and they are there to hear what you have to say and what has been bothering you.

4. There is constructive feedback.

If you work for a company that gives you monthly, quarterly or annual reports of progress, it is a good thing. This means that they care about keeping you around and making sure you know what steps need to be taken in order to go further into the company. It is important to take this as constructive criticism and not personally. Your management is giving you an opportunity to find out what needs to be done in order to move forward with the company and genuinely care that you make it as far as you can.

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5. There is an extensive hiring process to prevent toxic workers.

If you had to go through a couple interviews to start working for your job, it is more than likely they are putting a lot of effort into the hiring process to prevent any toxic workers coming into the office. These are the ones that are negative and spread it quicker than a cold in preschool. They are the ones that call in sick all the time and make you work doubles because there isn’t any coverage. They are the ones that put office politics into play because they love the drama and most of all, they do not have any passion to do a job well done. Companies that focus on employee happiness will make sure that you are working with passionate and hardworking people just like yourself.

6. There is a small company feel.

If you interact with your upper management with more than just the occasional policy change email, it’s definitely a good thing. Companies that have their CEO or general manager do little things like friendly competitions with a bonus for a prize or a friendly dinner to touch base with a group of employees shows that they really care about how their employees are feeling.

7. There is a large focus on morale between employees, management and their families.

It is a good thing if you find yourself at an occasional family day or event that includes your work and home life. That means they really want to know who you are as a person, not just an employee. It boost moral and gives a sense of community in and outside of the office.

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8. The atmosphere is fun and rewarding.

It is a great feeling to be appreciated and rewarded occasionally for a job well done. Some companies are starting to do raffles for TV’s, vacations and gift cards to boost employee happiness and activities. If you have been given a pat on the back, words of appreciation or even have won a TV, it means you are working for a great company.

9. There is a diverse environment.

A diverse environment means that your company hires based on who will best match the goals of the company and boost the moral of the team. This is regardless of their race, age, sex, experience and occasionally education.

10. The pay is fair for the job that is asked.

Nobody likes being paid very little for a lot of effort. A company that makes sure their wages are fair and puts the occasional bonus out there cares about their employees and their welfare.

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11. There are clear expectations set and instructions on how to meet those expectations.

It is very simple to stick to expectations and follow instructions. When you are given a clear goal and the steps you need to take to get there, that means your job isn’t just throwing numbers, tasks or meetings at you just to keep you busy. They really do want to see you succeed and will work with you every step of the way to make sure that happens.

12. There are occasional breaks in the work-day.

Though it doesn’t seem logical to take more breaks to be more productive, some companies believe that it does. If you have more than that one lunch break, it means they care about more than just your nutrition needs. They care about your productivity, stress levels and efficiency. Everyone needs that occasional coffee break, or just that fifteen minutes to talk a walk after a bad moment.

In conclusion, if you find that you are working at one of these companies, consider yourself lucky. They are there for the welfare of everyone in the organization and care about your happiness specifically. Some don’t have it so luckily, but who knows, maybe that will change in a few years.

Featured photo credit: Team Spirit- Gerd Altmann via pixabay.com

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Margielyn Musser

Event And Volunteer Coordinator / World Traveler

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Published on September 16, 2020

12 Practical Interview Skills to Help You Land Your Dream Job

12 Practical Interview Skills to Help You Land Your Dream Job

Today, with many companies going remote—at least until there’s a COVID-19 vaccine—technical proficiency is a vital skill for every interviewee to master. You may be asked to interview for a job on Zoom or Microsoft Teams. The way you handle yourself in the online interview (your interview skills) will say much about your ability to work from home efficiently.

Does your workspace look clean or cluttered? Is the area free from noise? Is your home office well lit?

Once hired, you may be asked to organize meetings on Zoom and other platforms. Along with mastering the technology, you will have to learn to follow certain protocols.

Now is the time to get up to speed on your technical skills. Learn which interview skills are needed for the particular job for which you are applying and practice them.

Online learning sites, such as LinkedIn Learning and Udemy, offer courses for free or a nominal membership fee. If you are a DIY type, make use of training videos offered through your particular digital tools.

Additionally, demonstrating that you have these 12 interview skills will help you land your dream job.

1. Organization

When you work in a brick-and-mortar office, some of the organizing is left to others. Your direct supervisor may host a Monday morning quarterback meeting where each worker reports on the progress on their tasks.

When you work from home, much of the organizing will be left up to you. To a much greater extent than before, you will need to develop a schedule and stick to it. Some tasks may be faster to complete from your home office where you don’t have other workers competing for your attention.

Conversely, you may find that some tasks that would have gone quickly in an office seem to take forever from your home computer. Your phone may ring a lot, which can distract you, or you may have kids and a spouse who inadvertently disrupt your schedule.

To do: Set a schedule and stick to it.

To discuss during your interview: Be specific. Point to the interview skill you utilized to create a schedule for a complex work project and followed it.

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2. Flexibility

You set a schedule for the completion of your tasks, but your prospective boss gets their work done between the hours of 2:00 and 8:00 a.m. Your West Coast partners are three hours behind your East Coast partners, and one of your partners lives in England while another lives in Australia.

Feedback and collaboration (see point 3) may need to happen asynchronously. Be the flexible candidate—the person who is willing to occasionally disrupt their schedule for the greater good of the team.

For extra credit: don’t just look up time zones, look up whether they observe Daylight Savings Time.

To do: Be flexible about meeting times.

To discuss during your interview: Highlight a time when you worked on a team where members lived in different time zones. Discuss your processes.

3. Collaboration

As recently as six months ago, before the pandemic raged around the world, collaboration wasn’t quite as essential as it is today. In a remote office setting, collaboration doesn’t just mean working well with others—but actually sharing documents and editing them online on time.

Several cloud-based tools, such as Google Drive, Basecamp, and Trello, enable the type of collaborative teamwork that most companies want today.

To do: Download the correct software and practice using it.

To discuss during your interview: Discuss how you worked remotely with a group. Share how you overcame certain challenges.

4. Poise

Murphy’s Law states, “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.”

When things do go awry, keeping your wits about you will demonstrate your consummate professionalism under fire. This will show your future bosses that you will be able to work well under the pressures of remote work.

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What could go wrong, you ask? You might be muted without realizing it—your Internet connection may not be robust, your headphones may blip out, your cellphone may ring, Zoom could have an outage. The list goes on and on.

To do: Make sure you have the most up-to-date versions of Skype and Zoom uploaded.

To discuss during your interview: Consider highlighting a time when a project did not go as planned. Demonstrate the interview skills that allowed you to rise to the challenge.

5. Communication

Your ability to handle online communication is one of the top critical skills you will need to thrive in today’s remote workplace. Download Slack if you haven’t already. Get used to toggling to a different form of online communication if one of your tools fails.

When it comes to the preferred format for your online interview, demonstrate proficiency by offering several different options. Give your phone number, Google Chat Hangouts name, and Skype ID.

To do: Familiarize yourself with video conference and online chat tools, such as Slack, Fleep, or Workplace by Facebook.

To discuss during your interview: Be prepared to share the online communication tools you’re using and examples of how you use each one.

6. Good Computer Hygiene

Setting up a backup system for your computer files is one of today’s crucial requirements for working in the digital age. Storing documents that can be shared by team members is also an efficient way to work together on presentations, articles, and reports—although studies show nearly one-third of employees avoid them because of the time it takes to find documents.

Be prepared in your interview to indicate your experience utilizing this technology, describing how you organize and store files using cloud-based collaboration tools. How do you keep track of links and tabs? Do you use Dropbox? Google Docs? Confluence? Others?

To do: Take inventory of the cloud-based document sharing and storage systems you know and use.

To discuss during your interview: Describe the document sharing tools and backup systems you utilize—both for personal protection and professional file sharing.

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7. Proper Meeting Etiquette

Today, presenting yourself virtually has its pros and cons. While you only have to show a professional persona from the waist up (make sure to straighten up your office space behind you), you must boost your energy to show that you’re engaged in the discussion.

Make your voice as upbeat as possible. Have your talking points at the ready and be careful not to ramble on, as long virtual meetings easily become tiresome. Use the mute and chat features to avoid interruptions.

To do: Once you know the meeting platform, make sure you have it mastered before your interview.

To discuss during your interview: Offer to share your screen to show an example of a work project— while at the same time demonstrating your prowess with video conferencing tools.

8. Respecting Feedback

In the age of working remotely, there may not be as many systems in place to obtain feedback (such as yearly performance reviews). Workers may need to ask for feedback, while managers may need to give more feedback than usual as the team adjusts to working off-site. Respecting feedback is on top of the interview skills list that you should learn.

Taking a proactive approach with giving and receiving feedback and incorporating it into your work style is a desirable quality that your employers will note.

To do: Reflect on the positive feedback you’ve received from past employers to bolster your confidence.

To discuss during your interview: Share a time when you received feedback that made you grow in the job. If you’re a manager, share a time when you gave feedback to an employee who needed to better their job performance.

9. Project Management

Staying on task with projects has evolved far past a to-do list, with electronic tools that can track time, manage team workloads, and even do the client billing. While your prospective employer may have its preferred project management program, your experience with any of the various options—whether it’s Basecamp, Teamwork, Smartsheet, or another—will be applicable.

To do: Know which project management software is likely to be used by the industry in which you’re interviewing, and familiarize yourself with its features.

To discuss during your interview: Highlight a project management feature that is particularly useful in helping you excel in your work, and explain how you utilize it.

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10. Staying up to Speed

Employers expect their remote workers to be technically proficient so that technology runs smoothly and doesn’t create work disruptions. Bosses count on remote workers to know enough about their systems to manage them without relying on the help of overworked IT staff.

To do: Make sure you have a fast internet connection and have a back-up plan, such as a second computer or other tethered devices.

To discuss during your interview: Note that you are diligent about keeping your computer and software up to date.

11. Attention to Cybersecurity Issues

“Virus” is a loaded term these days. Spreading a computer virus in your company, however, will not only bring productivity to a halt, but it will also make you a pariah. While working from public places using free Wi-Fi (with uneven security provisions) has waned, in pre-pandemic times, coffee shops accounted for 62 percent of Wi-Fi security breaches.

To do: Keep antivirus software updated and don’t download software without verifying its authenticity.

To discuss during your interview: Emphasize your awareness of cybersecurity risks and your care in taking necessary safety measures.

12. Teamwork

Work relationships now mostly happen in virtual settings, yet employers value team-oriented workers.

Being a part of a team gives you a sense of connection and shared purpose. A well-honed team understands how mutual reliance makes the sum of its parts greater than when individuals act on their own, improving the end product.

To do: Take stock of your attributes as a team player and where you can cultivate skills that will enable you to work more collaboratively.

To discuss during your interview: Inquire about the company’s culture and how it encourages a sense of community despite working remotely.

Final Thoughts

Preparing for remote positions available in today’s job market will mean honing your interview skills to highlight your technical abilities as well as your adaptability. By adhering to these To-Do’s and perfecting your online interview skills and charisma, you will rise above the competition and win over any prospective employer.

More Tips to Improve Your Interview Skills

Featured photo credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com via unsplash.com

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