Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 12th 2015 Contents Know when to ignore
Feedback helps us learn and grow. But it s
important to remember that not every opinion
is useful. It s OK to ignore feedback when it s
Many people will want to share maddeningly
nonspecific feedback with you ("I didn t think
it was as strong as it could have been" or
"There was just something off"). But if they
can t tell you exactly what the issue is, it s not
your job to figure it out (unless, of course,
they sign your paycheck). It s also OK to ignore
feedback when it s only one person s opinion.
It s easy to fixate on critiques, but one person s
take (no matter how influential he might be)
isn t always reliable. His feedback might not
even be about you --- it could be the result of
having a bad day or personal bias. So be wary
of such advice until you get confirmation from
(Adapted from "When It s OK to Ignore Feed-
back," by Dorie Clark.)
your own influence
We persistently underestimate our influence.
We don t suggest ideas to our boss or ask co-
workers for help because we fear rejection. So
we wind up missing opportunities because
we doubt our own powers of persuasion. Yet
our bosses and peers are probably more recep-
tive to requests than we realise.
We don t realise that it s usually harder for
people, even bosses, to say "no" than "yes."
So the next time you have a request, remember
that you re more persuasive than you think:
• Just ask. Don t psyche yourself out.
• Be direct. Don t drop hints. People respond
more positively to direct requests.
• Go back and ask again. Don t assume you
shouldn t approach someone because she s
previously said "no." People might be more
likely to say "yes" later --- especially if they
feel guilty about having said no in the past.
(Adapted from "You re Already More Per-
suasive Than You Think," by Vanessa K. Bohns.)
A good summary can help
your résumé stand out
The average recruiter spends just six seconds
deciding whether to read your résumé or pass
on it. How can you hook someone to keep
reading in that short a time?
Start with a brief but memorable summary
of yourself at the top of the page --- think 20
to 30 words.
Highlight your areas of expertise that are
relevant to the job, then focus on specific
results you ve achieved in those areas. High-
lighting your accomplishments shows the hir-
ing manager that you ve solved the kinds of
problems she s dealing with. Next, note the
types of organisations and industries you ve
worked in, and include your years of experi-
Distinguish yourself from other candidates,
making it immediately clear that you have
what it takes to excel in the position. And be
sure to avoid generic terms like "results-driven,"
"a proven track record" and "team player"
that don t really say anything.
(Adapted from "Yes, Your Résumé Needs a
Summary," by Vanessa K Bohns.)
Get yourself out of
a rut at work
Even exciting jobs have boring days. It s
inevitable when you work in the same office,
with the same people, day after day. So how
can you tell whether you re just in a rut --- or
whether it s time to leave your job? First, don t
wait for the rut to pass. Making even small
changes to your daily work can prove trans-
Start keeping a list of all the things you
accomplish each day, noting which kinds of
work energise you and which leave you feeling
drained. Next, think about how you might
redesign your role around the tasks that interest
Talk to your boss about taking on new chal-
lenges that fit your talents and goals, or vol-
unteer on a project outside your department.
But if you still think your job is a grind after
you ve tried to take action, it may be time to
(Adapted from "How to Fall Back in Love
With Your Job," by Carolyn O Hara.)
Does your writing
make a good impression?
People judge you by your writing. They
decide how smart, creative and trustworthy
you are---all from what you ve written. So be
sure your writing makes a good impression
on the reader. Here are some common mistakes
that cast you in an unflattering light:
• Using lots of pairs or sets of threes. For
BUSINESS GUARDIAN www.guardian.co.tt NOVEMBER 12 • 2015
TIPS & TALKING POINTS
example, avoid sentences
like this: "The policies
and practices of business
and nonprofits can be
expected to change and
• Inventing names or
acronyms. Making up
terms sounds pompous,
• Repeating words
with no good reason.
Writers seem inattentive
when they have a lot of
empty echoes in their
• Using nonparallel
bullet points. If three of
four are complete sen-
tences and one is only a
phrase, that s sloppy.
• Changing the order
of items. If you refer to
A, B and C, don t discuss
them in the order A, C
"Improve Your Writing to
Improve Your Credibility,"
by Barbara Wallraff.)
@2015 Harvard Busi-
ness School Publishing
Corp. Distributed by the
New York Times Syn-
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