Tag Archives: work

Have You Considered Phased Retirement?

You’re tired of working and ready to retire, so what’s stopping you?

Maybe you can’t afford it yet. Or perhaps you don’t want to stop working because you enjoy it. You want more time to dedicate to your family or hobbies, but aren’t quite ready to give your job up and retire. So, regardless of reason, you keep working.

The Good

But working forever isn’t the only option. There’s another way to ease out of the workforce—phased retirement.

Not sure what that means? Investopedia defines phased retirement as including “a broad range of employment arrangements that allow an employee who is approaching retirement age to continue working with a reduced workload, and eventually transition from full-time work to full-time retirement.”

In other words, phased retirement allows you to work in a part-time capacity for a certain time period before you start full-time retirement. You get to keep working for longer, while employers get the benefit of you passing on your knowledge and experience before heading off to retirement.

Sounds enticing, right?

The Bad

A study published by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies, as reported by Forbes, notes that 77% of employers believe many of their employees want to keep on working post-retirement. Forty-seven percent think employees would like to do some sort of phased retirement. The issue?

Only 31% of those same employers actually allow that shift to a phased retirement, and only 27% are okay with employees taking on jobs that are less stressful or demanding to make retirement easier.

The Solution

If you want to keep working and embrace retirement, there is still a solution through staffing companies like Express Employment Professionals.

You don’t have to pay anything to benefit from Express. All you need to do is pick up the phone and call a local office or register online. Let your employment specialist know your work availability and they’ll find you part-time positions that allow you to phase into retirement at your own pace.

For more in our retirement series, check out these helpful blogs:

Retirement: Happy 40th Birthday 401(K)

Beginner’s Guide to Retirement

Job Searching Past Retirement Age

Three Tips for Getting Your Retirement Started Off Right

Do you plan on retiring? If so, will you retire outright or opt for a phased approach? Let us know in the comments section below!

Why Do So Many People Hate Their Jobs?

Why are we so dissatisfied with our work?

You’ve heard about it in the halls. Around the water cooler. At parties. When you pick up your son or granddaughter. No matter where you go, at least one person is complaining about their job.

But it’s still surprising to see the statistics around work. The Conference Board recently published results regarding their latest survey on job satisfaction. They found that 51% of employees feel overall satisfaction with their jobs. Although this is actually an upward-trending number, the fact that 49% of workers remain unsatisfied is concerning, to say the least. In addition, workers noted disappointment in regard to the professional development aspects of their job. Meaning they gave the lowest marks to educational/job training programs. Other low categories include workload, the performance review process, and promotion policy.

But what else goes into hating a job? And what can you do about it?

Perceived Lack of Choice

Think of this as the “work just to get a paycheck” mentality. At a base level, many people only work to afford living expenses, pay student loans, enjoy hobbies, and fund college for kids. The majority often end up working for other reasons (parents’ expectations, to get married, to support children, etc.).

You might have dreams outside of your current company, but can’t risk pursuing those dreams because of monetary obligations. So, sometimes you sit at the same job, day after day, working on autopilot, just waiting for retirement.

The only way to get around this is to break free of constraints. If you truly hate your job, you should quit. But the future is scary. As a solution, consider working other jobs part-time, and think of it as a trial run. And if you just plain hate the industry you’re working in? Seek out online classes or night school to learn a new trade.

Office Drama

Your cubicle mate chews loudly, every day.  Amanda in Sales is jealous of your promotion. Your boss refuses to let you advance because he needs you to keep reporting to him. You just can’t get past that glass ceiling.

Office drama comes in many shapes and forms, from annoying coworker habits to illegal activity at the top of the food chain. No matter the severity of the drama, it can easily affect your work satisfaction.

For smaller issues, try contacting managers to discuss options. Or if you have a horrible boss, you can ask to move departments (just make sure to document all abusive behavior).

But for problems up at the top? It might be time to leave. To ensure that you don’t end up encountering another unstable company culture, check out Glassdoor, a site where employees can review companies. That way you’ll have a better idea of what you’re in for.

You’re Underpaid

This is a big one. Earlier we mentioned that, at a base level, most of us work to get a paycheck. If you’re working more than what your paycheck is worth, you’re going to be unhappy.

You see other people get promotions or raises and just grow even more unsatisfied with your job. You work harder than them—why haven’t you gotten a raise?

In many cases, this is because you haven’t asked for one. Asking is tough; we get that. That’s why we’ve provided the tools you need to negotiate a raise. And if they won’t pay what you’re worth? Start looking elsewhere. The job search can be intimidating, but what have you got to lose? In a worst case scenario, you’ll keep working where you are. But you deserve the chance to find something better.

And Express Employment Professionals can help. Let us do the job search for you. We work with employers all across the United States and Canada, and we know exactly what they’re looking for. Odds are, you’ll make the perfect candidate for one of those companies. Register online or locate an office near you.

Do you hate your job? Why or why not? Let us know in the comments section below!

Diffusing Tension in the Workplace

Resolve conflict and bring peace to the work world

The workplace is complicated. It doesn’t matter if you work on an assembly line, type away at a cubicle, make cold calls in a call center, or take customer orders at a dinner table; you always deal with other people.

We’re all human and we have bad days. And sometimes you might do something inadvertently to make someone’s day worse. It could be a miscommunication via email, perhaps you chew loudly, or maybe there’s a scheduling conflict you just can’t agree on. These little things add up and suddenly there’s tension between the two of you.

Getting rid of that tension is one of the most important workplace soft skills. An employee who can effectively resolve conflict is priceless. So, how is this accomplished?

There are five main styles for managing conflict, according to Thomas, Kenneth W. Thomas and Ralph H. Kilmann originators of the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument. The key is to figure out the right mix of styles for any given situation, and recognize your coworker’s preferred conflict management style.

Here are those given conflict management styles, as outlined by SourcesOfInsight.com.

  1. Accommodating

Think of this as killing your enemy with kindness.

Basically, if accommodating is your style of choice, your tendency is to give into the other person’s desires without making sure you get what you want. Maybe you think your boss’ idea is less than great, but don’t tell them because that would make waves.

Although it might sound cowardly on paper, there’s nothing inherently wrong with the accommodating style. All styles are valid. For example, it’s usually better to defer to those with more experience when you’re new to the job.

  1. Avoiding 

With this style, you avoid conflict at all costs. You never win arguments and prefer to stay out of the combat zone entirely. You don’t want to say no so you end up saying nothing. Think of this as the “let well enough alone” mentality.

Avoidance is a great for when emotions are running high and you need time to think, when you know you can’t win, or just don’t feel like the situation is worth the effort. Why engage when there will be minimal gains?

  1. Collaborating

Think of this as the “win-win” scenario. You want to work with your coworker in order to achieve common ground and for everyone to get what they want.

This is a great conflict resolution style when everyone is already on the same page. You trust each other, value teamwork,  say what you mean, and don’t have to worry about hurt feelings. It’s not a great choice when emotions are running high or people’s viewpoints are diametrically opposed.

  1. Competing

This is the “might makes right” mentality. You want to get what you want no matter what, and the opposing side’s wishes aren’t important.

Again, this sounds like the angry boss who intimidates his direct reports into getting something done. In that case, it’s not the best decision. But if you’re an accountant on a deadline and someone on another team is trying to tell you how to do your job, competing is a perfect response. You know your job better than someone in a different department, and don’t have time to worry about hurt feelings.

  1. Compromising

Think of this as standard negotiating procedure. The “give and take” approach. You and your coworker both work toward a solution by giving things up until common ground is reached.

The main problem with this one is that it takes time and isn’t affective when someone is unwilling to give anything up. That means it’s best used when you need a temporary solution or when both sides have important goals. However, beware: compromising can frequently be the result when collaborating is the better choice because it’s easier to get done. But if everyone can get what they want with a bit of hard work, why not go that route?

If you’re partial to any of these conflict resolution tactics, ask yourself if you’re trying the same solution in every situation and not getting the results you need. If you are, you might want to explore other methods to get rid of the problem.

Have you ever had to solve a workplace dispute? How did it go? Let us know in the comments below.

The Top 3 Seasonal Work Opportunities

Do you hear that? Turkeys are gobbling and sleigh bells are jingling…

Although seasonal hiring is going on year-round, the end of the year is especially full of tantalizing opportunities. From holiday banquet servers and retail employees to event security at the big game, there’s something for everyone.

These jobs are a great way to pick up some holiday cash. Some even come with the possibility of being picked up for a full-time position.

Without further ado, here are our top seasonal work opportunities for the rest of 2018.

Banquet Servers

What do these last few months of the year have that makes them particularly powerful? Two of the biggest holidays of the year of course! Thanksgiving and Christmas are huge seasonal hiring opportunities, due to the increased need for positions of all stripes and colors.

This includes banquet servers. Do you love turkey? Do you like people? Do you like spreading holiday cheer through the power of fantastic food? This might be the pick for you.

Banquet servers perform all serving responsibilities during an event. This usually includes the serving of food, restocking and cleanup, as well as set up and tear down for the event.

Qualities to have include good communication, a sunny attitude, and being able to follow direction well.

Retail

With end of the year comes Black Friday and the ensuing holiday shopping season. Retail employees serve as the first line of defense against these excited shoppers.

Retail employees can cover a range of responsibilities depending on the type of store they are working at. However, a few common responsibilities include greeting customers, assisting with customer questions and concerns, using the store’s unique inventory and payment technologies, and adjusting or restocking displays.

Retail employees should know as much as possible about the products they are selling, be willing and happy to listen to and help employees, and have a high stress tolerance (especially during the holiday months).

Event Security

Do you love that feeling of enthusiasm and solidarity that comes with a big sports game? Or maybe the annual state fair is your go-to celebration. Perhaps concerts are your go-to hobby. How about taking those hobbies to the next level with an event security position?

Responsibilities can vary depending on the individual position and venue, but common duties include monitoring the event for any signs of unrest or rule-breaking, assisting individuals with directions, directing foot traffic, and escorting troublesome individuals out of the venue.

A security officer should be calm, cool, and collected. Prior security or military experience is a plus.

Contact Express Employment Professionals

Looking for the perfect seasonal job? Express can help you find the type of job that fits for your needs and abilities, and you’ll never pay a fee for our services and support.

Contact a local Express office or register online today!

Do you always follow up after interviews? If not, why not? Let us know in the comments section below!

Safety Month: Workstation Ergonomics to Maintain a Healthy Back

June is National Safety Month, and what better way to celebrate than a few workplace safety tips?

Proper back support, correct lifting techniques, and eye protection tips can seem tedious, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t worth discussing. Since looking at a few short points can save you from chronic pain or injury, we think it’s worth it.

Here are a few ergonomics tips to ensure your cubicle doesn’t cubikill your back.

[Download a PDF of this poster here]

 

 

How Has Work Changed Your Life?

Share your stories with us!

Many jobs provide a whole new work family, a new culture, and a new experience. Work can truly change our lives. We can learn new skills, meet new people, and go to exciting new places.

What about you? Has a job or any step on your career path ever changed your life? Maybe a degree or certification opened new doors, or perhaps you met a mentor in your first job that set you on an entirely different career path. It’s even possible you met your spouse on the job!

If you have a life-changing story to share about your career, let us know in the comments below. Or, if you’d prefer to let your social media friends know, use the hashtag #LifeChanging on Facebook or Twitter. We’re encouraging people across the nation to share their stories, and now we want to hear from you.

Has any step on your career path been #LifeChanging? Let us know in the comments below!

Need a Job? Seasonal Work Is Here

RET_005The holiday season may still seem far off, but now is the time to start looking for work if you plan to find a seasonal job this year. Every year, the holiday season helps put millions of people to work in jobs that may begin as temporary employment, but often turn into permanent employment.

There are many benefits to finding a seasonal job. In addition to the extra income around the holidays, seasonal jobs are also a great way to add experience to your resume and network with people who may be able to help your career in the future. Even though your job may start out as a temporary one, it could lead to permanent, full-time employment.

Take Your Job Seriously
According to Bob Funk, CEO of Express Employment Professionals, “Employers will look at their temporary employees this holiday season to see which ones merit a full-time, permanent position.”

If you want to better your odds of landing a permanent job after the holidays, remember to treat your seasonal job like an extended interview. Take advantage of the opportunity to show you’re hard-working, committed, and have a positive attitude. When you go above and beyond at your temporary job, you better your chances of being noticed by potential employers.

Don’t Limit Your Options
Holiday jobs may seem like they’re limited to Christmas or other winter holidays, but don’t forget about the entire holiday season. Halloween, for example, can be an avenue for temporary work because of large costume superstores that open for the season. Additionally, party stores may need extra help around New Year’s Eve.

Start Now
Stop by any department store and you’re likely to see holiday items already stocked on the shelves. If businesses are already thinking about the holidays, you should be too. Brainstorm places you would like to apply for seasonal work and get started on applications. Don’t wait until November or December, because most employers want their seasonal staff trained and working before the shopping rush begins.

Call a Staffing Agency
When companies want to hire multiple new employees for the holiday season, they often go to a staffing company for assistance. Since staffing providers are usually better equipped to find, screen, and hire large numbers of workers, they can be a great resource for you. Do your homework before you apply and make sure the staffing company is a reputable one, like Express Employment Professionals.

Make Sure You’re Prepared
In a recent poll on Movin’ On Up, we asked if our readers plan on looking for seasonal work this year. An astonishing 84% of responders said that they do plan to look for seasonal work. Since so many people want to find work this holiday season, you need to make sure you’re prepared to beat the competition. Clean up your resume, brush up on your interview skills, make a list of references, research the companies you want to work for, and know the skills that employers want to see. When you’re prepared for a job opportunity, you stand a better chance of landing the job.

Have you worked a seasonal job? Did your seasonal job turn into a permanent one? Share your tips with us in the comments section below!

Movin’ On Up is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.