Category Archives: 1. The Scoop

New Research on Notetaking Reveals Surprises… Maximize Social Media Presence for Recruiters… Job Interview No-Nos

New Research on Notetaking Reveals Surprises

The controversy over whether students should be allowed to use laptops to take notes has raged in the research for years. But the newest addition to this body of studies may alter the way instructors approach the conundrum.

How Much Mightier Is the Pen Than the Keyboard for Note-Taking? attempted to replicate well-known research that found students who took notes by hand performed better than those who took notes on a laptop. That 2014 study (Mueller and Oppenheimer) surmised that although students who took notes on their computers typed more words than the hand writers, they did so without much thought to what they wrote.

The new study could not replicate the original study’s findings and came to a startling conclusion–that both ways of taking notes were valid, depending on the situation. For example, if an instructor speaks fast, students fare better taking notes using their computers. However, in a course that uses figures and illustrations, students are better served taking notes by hand.

All researchers agreed on one point, however, and that was that computers are distracting.


Maximize Social Media Presence for Recruiters

A whopping 95% of recruiters use social media to fill positions. And while warnings about what notto post on social media have become commonplace, many job seekers are unaware of what they shoulddo to maximize their social media presence. Here’s what savvy job hunters should address so recruiters can both find and choose to connect with them.

  1. Increase searchability. Using keywords in job titles and experience statements on a LinkedIn profile helps recruiters locate good fits for a position.
  2. Dig deep networks. Recruiters are more likely to find candidates who have multiple second- and third-degree connections.
  3. Demonstrate professionalism. An articulate and professional online presence is a big plus, especially to recruiters looking for a good cultural fit with an organization.
  4. Avoid sending up red flags. Profanity, spelling and grammar errors, and classic poor social media posting choices cause recruiters to rethink their decisions to contact a potential hire.
  5. Show engagement. Participating in online conversations illustrates how individuals demonstrate their own expertise.


Job Interview No-Nos

Conversational pitfalls to avoid during a job interview fall into a few basic categories.

  1. Showing cluelessness. A level of inexperience and obliviousness can pretty much guarantee you won’t be asked back, so avoid:
  • asking what the company does
  • cursing
  • saying you want the interviewer’s job
  • indicating the job isn’t a first choice
  • not knowing which job you’re interviewing for
  1. Getting personal. Inquiries about the interviewer’s marital status, whether a woman is pregnant or has children, or any type of flirting is considered in poor taste and in some cases, illegal, so just don’t do it.



Tips for College Grads… Change Anti-Networking Feelings, Says Harvard… Why Internships Count

Tips for College Grads

As graduation nears, you’ll hear a lot of advice. Below are some pointers for making the most of your professional life from, a leading business magazine.shutterstock_576216802

Forget perfection. Often good has to be good enough, and finishing a project is more important than a perfect project.

Remember your health. Start taking care of yourself now by eating good foods, exercising regularly, and sleeping enough. Developing a healthy lifestyle will only get harder as you age.

Make mistakes. Slip-ups help you learn. Rather than trying to avoid mistakes, learn from them and move on.

Socialize. The ability to converse easily and connect with people is a lifelong skill that will help you in any job.

Continue to learn. Evolve to meet new challenges to make yourself a more valuable employee. Take classes and acquire skills throughout your career.


Change Anti-Networking Feelings, Says Harvard

Professional networks lead to better jobs and increased job satisfaction. In fact, those who do not network never progress to the degree that networkers do, according to new research from the Harvard Business Review. These four strategies can help you learn to improve your networking skills.

  1. Shift the negative mindset. Instead of looking at networking as a necessary evil in which you’ll have to pretend to be interested and interesting, switch your approach. Tell yourself you might just learn something useful.
  2. Find commonalities. Good networking is not about casual relationships, experts say. The best networking occurs when people enjoy or have interest in the same activities. By engaging in those activities, you’ll develop long-lasting ties as well as professional relationships. 
  3. Identify your unique resources. Often people who feel powerless, especially young workers, find it difficult to enter into networking relationships because they don’t feel as if they have much to contribute. However, newer workers have insights into generational trends and markets that may be valuable to senior employees.
  4. Focus on the collective benefit. Instead of looking at networking as a task done to promote yourself, think about it as something you’re doing to support your firm or to help your clients. By linking the task to a less selfish purpose, networking can feel like a positive experience.


 Why Internships Count

College students are repeatedly told to obtain internships, and with good reason. Although jobs that help pay the bills may be necessities, learning about a specific field or industry with an internship will help a graduate’s long-term career goals in a much more profound way.

First, internships make job applicants more competitive. The exposure interns gain from experiencing the day-to-day realities of working in a particular field provides them with understanding they simply cannot get elsewhere. Just as important, however, is discovering whether a given field is the right fit for an individual by experiencing it first-hand.

Internships also help prepare new workers for the professional workplace. While in school, students focus on getting through classes, but the workplace demands an entirely different approach as well as knowledge of professional behavior.

Finally, an internship may provide an excellent source of professional references, and in some cases, a job offer.

The bottom line is that if students can possibly work an internship into their college experience, they will most likely be more attractive new hires.


Never Make These Comments to Recruiters… Employers Are Texting Potential Hires… Super Skills Needed for Changing Job Landscape

Never Make These Comments to Recruiters

Every interaction you have with a potential employer—and that begins with recruiters—should show professionalism and thoughtfulness. To put your best foot forward, avoid these phrases.

  1. “I’ll take any job at your company.” This sounds desperate and doesn’t focus on what you can bring to an organization. It also shows you haven’t thought through your career goals.
  2. “That salary sounds fine.” Even starting salaries are negotiable, and the best way to negotiate is to research before accepting a number.
  3. “My former company was awful.” Grousing about a former employer or colleague damages your reputation, not theirs. Instead, talk about how you coped with challenging circumstances.
  4. “My former boss was threatened by me so she won’t give me a good recommendation.” Recruiters will likely want the best recommendations you can offer. If your current boss is not one of those, simply tell the recruiter that the list you provide represents the most comprehensive mix of supervisors to talk about your skills and accomplishments.
  5. “Can we reschedule?” Canceling an interview, especially on the day it’s scheduled, is like saying you don’t care about the job.
  6. “Has my résumé fallen into a black hole?” Being condescending or whiney about not hearing about a job application will cause more harm than good. Instead, try to find someone who can personally refer you, so that a recruiter might take the time to examine your application.


Employers Are Texting Potential Hires

Many employers are turning to text messaging as a way to communicate with job seekers—and to lower recruiting costs and grab younger workers’ attention as jobs go unfilled in the tight labor market.

The use of text messaging usually occurs early in the hiring process as a way to arrange interviews, ask initial screening questions, and connect with past applicants.

New recruiting texting apps are being marketed to large staffing firms and even Fortune 500 companies. These tools use “conversational,” artificially-produced questions to text with applicants about qualifications and availability.

Texting in lieu of calling for initial screenings has several benefits. Candidates are more likely to respond to a text message than an e-mail, resulting in a better response from job seekers who might avoid job-board e-mail listings. The inherent back-and-forth of texting can also speed up the initial job screening process while encouraging Gen Z and millennial candidates to participate in a familiar, low stress environment.


Super Skills Needed for Changing Job Landscape

The workplace is evolving as technology, the economy, and politics impact businesses. To be relevant in the future, job searchers should hone these five skills, according to the non-profit think tank Institute of the Future.

  1. Digital competence. Artificial intelligence will help make humans more efficient; therefore, learning to use new digital tools will be considered a crucial skill.
  2. Adaptability. Being able to change in the complex and fast-moving world will make an employee more valuable. Flexibility sometimes means stepping down to learn a new skill before moving back up again. This type of adaptability is predicted to be another important skill.
  3. Resilience. Overcoming obstacles is important to organizations; hence, employees who can surmount setbacks, problems, and negativity help their organizations transform problems into opportunities.
  4. Personal branding. Standing out and building a reputation with a following will be essential. That means creating a “reputational portfolio,” which showcases a polished social media presence so that employers can readily grasp how a person’s skills and goals will fit with a corporate culture.
  5. Networking. Building a “personal tribe” has become an integral way for job seekers to move from position to position. Dedicating the time to building a network will continue to be the single best way to hear about openings.