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Monday, June 2, 2014

"I Hate My Job!" Portrait of a MAPP User

“I hate my job! If I don’t find a new job soon, I’m going to go nuts!!!!”

That's what Amanda would say to herself every Monday morning when she got to her job as a sales clerk at an electronics store. She was discouraged and depressed, and it carried over into her personal life.

When you hate your job, it carries into your personal life as well. Find a career you love!
It wasn't a bad job; it paid the rent and left a little money left over for entertainment. But Amanda, like 70 percent of Americans, hated her job and badly needed to find a new career, a new sense of direction.

Amanda loved new gadgets and talking to customers about news and technology. But the company she worked for and the job itself didn’t fit her personality or motivation. She went to work every day feeling anxious and left at the end of the day feeling drained.

Sound familiar?

According to a poll of 8,000 workers, more Americans hate their jobs than any other nationality --  double that of Canada, India and the Netherlands.

For Amanda, the breaking point was one especially frustrating day that left her in tears. She went home, Googled "career test," and found the MAPP career test. After taking the 15-minute test, Amanda was intrigued and excited by the possibility of actually enjoying her work.

She learned all about what motivates her to succeed at work – the key element that was missing in her electronics store job. Amanda learned that although she enjoys people, doing sales was not the right fit for her. She was a little shy and uncomfortable selling to people.

After reading her MAPP assessment, she realized what she really wanted to do was to develop  technology, and a job that would enable her to use her creative and technical skills.

She then signed up for a career package and lo and behold, the computer programming career came up very high on her list of good career matches.

Excited about her newfound focus, Amanda decided to take some night courses and get a degree in Information Technology. The MAPP website even showed her which local colleges had the right program that would fit her schedule so she could stay working while learning her new career.

Now Amanda loves her job. Instead of dealing with frustrating customers all day long, she's happy as a clam at high tide, developing and writing computer programs. No more anxious days and dead tired nights. She's enjoying life to the fullest!

Because she's energized and motivated, the challenges she faces at work are exciting and not arduous. It's all so simple. Amanda simply discovered what she has an aptitude for -- her natural talents. And now she's using these talents in her job every day.

If this sounds familiar, take 15 minutes to change your life!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

How to Get a Job After Graduation

You've graduated! Now what?!

After the teary goodbyes, and perhaps a little vacation or travel, you may face a lot of uncertainty about where you'll fit into the job market.

If you’re wondering how to get a job after graduation, you’re not alone. The first step is to take just one more (easy) test to learn all about about your career personality. But the MAPP career test will not only offer great insights into what makes you tick; it will also suggest language you can use on your resume.

The sky's the limit after graduation. But first, know what careers you're best suited for!
That's the real power of the MAPP career test.
The next step is to find out what jobs you're best suited for. After you take the MAPP test, one of the best gifts you can get (or give yourself) is a career package, which sorts about 900 jobs according to your unique career personality. Then take $10 off with the code "MyCareer."

Here are three easy steps you can do to put yourself in a position to land the perfect job.

1. Get Professional on Social Media

Get serious about your online presence. Set your privacy setting on your personal profile on Facebook or Tumblr to friends only, and delete anything that may appear unprofessional or incriminating.

Then establish a professional social media profile on LinkedIn if you don't have one already. It's never too early to start building your professional online profile, even if you’ve never had a job in your field. Twitter is another good professional resource, as long as you use it to follow and interact with those in your field.

2. Search for Professional Organizations

There's a professional organization for nearly every field. A quick online search will lead you to an organization that can help you build your professional network. Go to as many meetings as you can and after the event, connect with the people you met on LinkedIn. Then stay connected with them, because you may want to ask someone to be your mentor, which lead us to our next tip.

3. Find a Mentor

A mentor is important at any stage in your career development, but especially in the early stages. Seek out someone who's in your ideal job, and simply ask if they would be willing to mentor you.  It’s amazing how well this one bold step can work. A good mentor can have a significant impact on your career and direction and may even help you land a job in your field after graduation.

Now that you’re three steps closer to a great career you love, go enjoy a few more graduation barbecues!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

How to Pick a Career You're Good At

Many people simply fall into a career and end up working at it for years, feeling lost and unfulfilled.

But the ideal way to pick a career is to remember what you really love doing. You could start by remembering what you wanted to be when you grew up. Also consider those activities that come naturally to you -- the things you're really good at.

What did you dream you would be when you grew up? Pick a career that really lights your fire!
This week, we offer insights into how to pick a career you're good at. Try not to lose sight of the big picture as you go to work day in and day out. There's a bigger and better career waiting for you!  You just need to recognize and nurture your talents -- and ultimately turn them into a career you love.

Here are our tips for picking a career you'll love:

1. Take the MAPP Test

The 15-minute free MAPP career test is scientifically proven and professionally respected, used by over 7.5 million people in 53 countries. You'll tap into your true skills, motivation and career personality so you can discover – or re-discover – what you’re truly good at.

Then, we sort over 900 real jobs so you can see what careers are the best match for your unique career personality. Just think: you'll never have to wonder how you'll answer the dreaded question: “But can I make money doing that?”

2. Write Your One-Sentence Biography

It’s often very difficult to define ourselves, and yet we’re asked to do so all the time. Stop defining yourself by whatever you’re unhappy with: i.e, “I’m a student, but unsure what I'll major in," or “I’m working as a ___, but I don’t really like it,” or, “I’m currently looking for work.”

Instead, define what you want to be -- your ideal self -- in a few words. What immediately comes to mind? How would you like to be able to introduce yourself? This may take a long time to compose and refine. Don’t worry if you don’t come up with something right away. But once you come up with your new description of who you are, you can use this everywhere, from your resume to your social media profiles.

3. Look Back at your Past Self

When Britta looked back on photos of herself in school, she was shocked at how much she loved painting. Looking at the photos, and remembering how good the artistic expression made her feel, reminded her that she's not a one-track person. Chances are you aren’t either.

Although too often we get railroaded into one career, one talent or one path, the truth is we all have a multitude of passions. Go back in time and consult your past self: you might be surprised by what you see.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

How to Work the Room at a Career Fair

Career fairs can be a mixed bag. Sometimes they can feel overwhelming and a waste of time.

But with some preparation and patience, career fairs can be an excellent way to make a positive impression on potential employers.

Career fairs are great for job-seekers. But first know what career you're best suited for!
Here are four tips to make the most of a career fair:

1. Research Employers Ahead of Time

Most career fairs list attending businesses and organizations, and they may even give you a preliminary look at what they're looking for.

If it's a big career fair and you’re worried you won’t have time to talk to everyone, make a list of the companies you’re most interested in. Do your research: go to their websites before you attend the fair. You don't want to ask obvious questions that are easily answered on the company's website.

2. Bring Your Resume

Bring plenty of copies of your resume. Even if you’ve already submitted your resume or CV online, it's always a good idea to bring paper copies to the career fair.

Remember to tailor your resume to every job. That could easily mean that you have several different versions of your resume. Take some time, research the company and rewrite your resume so it sounds like you're the perfect candidate for the particular job they're hiring for.

3. Think of It as an Interview

Dress professionally, make eye contact, answer questions thoughtfully and ask appropriate and engaging questions -- the more specific, the better. You generally want to act as though you're being evaluated for a job by every person you meet.

4. Don’t Be Afraid to Network

In addition to talking with company representatives, you can also network with other job seekers. Making connections and growing your network will always pay off in the long run. Bring plenty of business cards with you. Never let a one-track mind blind you to all of the networking possibilities inherent during a career fair.

Spring is a perfect time for career renewal, and lots of job fairs will be popping up. Take advantage and attend as many as you can.

And if you’re still at a loss at how to answer the question, “Where do you see yourself in five years?,” take the 15-minute MAPP career test to learn your career personality, ideal career areas and get matched the right job for you this spring.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Best Careers for Moms

Starting a family doesn’t mean having to give up your career. Many moms successfully juggle careers while raising young children.

In fact, in a record 40 percent of households with children, the mother is the primary or sole breadwinner according to a 2013 Pew study. The survey also found that the total family income is higher when the mother, not the father, is the primary breadwinner.

You can be a mom and have a fulfilling career, too!
While no job is off limits to new moms, flexibility is important in helping achieve work-life balance. In honor of Mother’s Day, we offer the best career ideas for moms with young kids who want to make some cash while spending time with the little ones.

1. Freelance Anything

While freelance work comes with its own risks and problems, the flexible hours and up-to-you workload is extremely appealing to many moms. From the creative side such as illustration, graphic design or writing, to the technical side such as web development, there's a freelance career for nearly every career personality. If you’re willing to take the risk and you have the safety net, freelancing can be very freeing!

2. By Appointment Work

Similar to freelancing, by appointment work allows you to set your own hours as well as the number of hours you work. It can be a great option for moms who are juggling unpredictable school schedules. Hair stylists, personal trainers, masseuses, photographers, psychics – almost anything you can think of that requires an appointment makes a great career for moms who need flexibility.

3. Consulting

Everyone has a particular expertise, and if your expertise is in demand – from accounting to marketing to human resources – you can have a career as a consultant. You can make great money, work by appointment and use the skills you already have. Build your portfolio and exercise some patience, as building a successful consulting business takes time.

There are no jobs young moms CAN’T do. But if you’re still a little lost about the direction your career should go in now that you're a mom, take the MAPP career test.  It’ll tell you everything you need to know about your career personality and your ideal field of work.

And don't forget to call your mom.

Monday, April 28, 2014

The Teaching Personality: Is This YOU?

National Teacher Day is Sat., May 6, when we thank the special teachers in our lives.

Most of us have had at least one great teacher. As we get older, we realize that teaching is a tough job. With a salary range that hasn't kept up with inflation and a lot of unpaid hours, teaching is a notoriously difficult career.

Do you have what it takes to be a great teacher?

Thankfully, many people are still called to teach. Is that your career path? Do you have a "teaching personality?"

This blog is for those who wonder if they have the personality needed to become a great teacher. Below are what lifelong teachers have said are the top five personality traits needed to succeed as a teacher:

1. Strong Motivation

You don't go into teaching because you want a huge paycheck or easy money. Teaching is a calling, and like most callings, it requires strong and inherent motivation.

2. Love of People

Teaching is a people-oriented career. Most of your time will be spent with students from all walks of life, as well as colleagues and administrators.

3. Patience

Students of all ages can test your nerves and patience. Plus, you'll have to deal with picky parents and challenging colleagues. A cool head and a thick skin can save you a lot of heartaches and keep you from burning out.

4. Passion

Think of your favorite teacher. Chances are one of the best gifts they gave you was a passion for their subject matter. You must really love your subject matter, because you'll be going over much of the same material year in and year out.

5. Empathy

Students come from all walks of life, and many need guidance and understanding. When there's no where else to turn, some students will reach out to teachers they trust. It isn’t in the job description, but teachers often counsel and coach students on other skills to help them succeed in life. If you're  empathetic and love to help others, you'll not only be a great teacher, but a great hero to your students.

Think your destiny is to become a teacher? Take the MAPP career test to see if you have the career personality it takes to succeed in a teaching career, and what other careers are a good fit for your unique career personality.

And don’t forget to thank a teacher this week!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Environmental Careers Part II

Last week, we celebrated Earth Day early by giving you four environmental career ideas to fit any type of career personality.

This week, as we celebrate Earth Day (April 22), we offer four more environmental career ideas for anyone who wants to dedicate themselves to improving the health of our planet.

Want to save the environment? There's a career for you!
But first discover your career personality...
If you’re a hard science major...

Chemists and physicists are both essential in solar technology -- one of our cleanest energy sources. Their job is to innovate and improve solar panel technology, making it more efficient and effective. The best news? You can expect to make six figures while helping improve our environment.

If you’re a logical thinker...

Working alongside chemists and physicists, engineers design and improve green technology. They have a hand in everything from solar power to wind farms to green buildings, and they make a great living doing it. Engineers function in many different capacities, helping improve the manmade world around them.

If you love working outdoors...

If you feel at home in a national or state park and want to work to educate and preserve our nation's parks, consider a career as a park naturalist. Park naturalists lead visitor services and field trips and help ensure the health of the park's flora and fauna. 

If you’re a creative type...

Environmental careers aren’t just for science majors. If your career personality leans more toward the arts, consider a career in green design. Green designers combine their creative talents and concern for the environment and redesign everyday products to reduce waste and be more environmentally sound.

No matter what your career personality, there's an environmental career for you. Take our free 15 minute career test to be matched with over 900 real jobs, and use our coupon code MyCareer for $10 off a comprehensive career package.

Happy Earth Day!