Tag Archives: business

Poll: What do you think the impact on jobs will be if the minimum wage is raised?

How would an increase in minimum wage affect jobs and hiring? The debate has been circulating for a while over whether a higher minimum wage will cause more people to accept the current job openings or whether those jobs will be eliminated by companies due to the increase in cost to their business. Let us know what you think by voting in our poll.

Best Colors to Wear for an Interview

Best_Colors_Interview_Jan2014_webWhen it comes to dressing for an interview, conservative is always the best way to go. With today’s ever-changing trends, it’s important to wear proper attire and appropriate colors to allow your interviewer to see you in a good light. Making a positive first impression is vital to getting the job you’ve been waiting for, so keep your attire simple.

What do the colors you wear say about you? Harris Interactive, one of the world’s leading market research firms, recently performed a national study with 2,099 hiring managers and human resource professionals from various industries and company sizes. These professionals were asked to advise job seekers on the best colors to wear to an interview and here are their recommendations provide valuable insight for job seekers.

Dress for Interview Success
Responses show the most recommended colors to wear to an interview are black or blue because these colors show leadership and professionalism. You don’t have to stick to a plain color of blouse and it’s okay to wear small prints, but keep in mind you don’t want the interviewer to be distracted by your wardrobe.

What Not to Wear
Bright orange topped the charts for being the worst color to wear to an interview, because it is the color that is mostly associated with unprofessionalism.

On the other hand, gray portrays a logical and analytical attitude. White shows organization, brown shows dependability, red shows power, and green, yellow, and purple show a creative side.

CareerBuilder offers these tips on dressing for success when preparing your interview wardrobe:

Don’t ever go to an interview too casual, be sure to dress for the environment, and always look polished. Before your interview, do your research on businesses that are interviewing you so you’ll know what their environments are like. For instance, you wouldn’t want to wear shorts and flip flops to a strictly professional business and you wouldn’t want to interview in slacks and a dress coat at a business that is laid back and less professional or you may not come across as the right fit for the job.

Have you been job searching and recently been asked to come in for an interview? Keep these interview wardrobe tips in mind as you’re preparing for your next job interview.

For more advice on interview wardrobes check out these blogs:

Men’s Work Attire That Never Goes Out of Style
Women’s Work Attire That Never Goes Out of Style
Dress For Success: What to Wear for an Interview
Putting Together a Work Wardrobe

The Dos and Don’ts of Business Travel

Dos and Donts of Business TravelIf you ever get the opportunity to travel for your company, it’s generally not the time to bust out the flip flops and shorts. Business travel isn’t the same as a road trip. When you do any corporate traveling, you are representing your employer in everything you do. But different employers have different rules on business travel, and they may even have unspoken expectations on what is acceptable behavior when traveling. To help point you in the right direction, here are some dos and don’ts when on a business trip.

DO Check Policies and Procedures
Most employers have rules and guidelines for business travel, and it’s important that you’re familiar with them before you go anywhere. It’s best not to claim ignorance and be ready to follow company procedures before traveling anywhere. If your company doesn’t have travel procedures, meet with your manager to find out if there is anything you need to know before you go.

DO Carry a Small Refresher Kit
You never know when a small accident might happen. If you need to look and feel professional while you are away, you need to be ready. Have a small bag that include items like floss, mints, aspirin, stain remover pens, and anything else you might need to look and feel your best.

DO Keep Your Receipts
It’s best to keep all of your receipts just in case your employer has any questions or concerns after you file for reimbursement. Keeping them organized in an envelope will help make your expense report easier and lowers your chances of mistakes. Check with your supervisor or HR director if you have any questions about employer reimbursements.

DON’T Pack Everything
When you pack everything you think you may need, your time going through the airport can take longer than expected. Going through security lines, finding storage space on the plane, and hailing a taxi or renting a car can be a lot more stressful and time consuming when you have to carry a 40-pound bag. Your trip will be quicker and less stressful when you pack lightly.

If all you have for a carry-on is your old sports duffle bag you’ve had for five years, you may want to consider purchasing a regular black rolling suitcase. It looks more professional and fits better in airplane compartments.

DON’T Assume Everything is in Writing
There may be actions or attire that may be allowed, but is generally frowned upon. You may be off duty after a certain time where you can wear casual clothes and be free to do what you want, but it may be considered inappropriate to stay out too late enjoying the night life.

DON’T Forget the Thank You
Most people associate sending thank-you cards to a job interview, but you should also consider sending them after your business trip. Depending on what type of business you’re doing, it makes a big impact to send a thank-you note to a client, potential customer, new partners, or conference leader. It’s also a great way to build relationships and carry on the conversation after the trip.

While business travel and regular travel have many similarities, there are also key differences that you should know. Are there any tips you’d like to give regarding the first time you traveled for business? Share them in the comments below.

How to Knock ‘em Dead With Your Business Card

Businesscard_march2012_webMany people see business cards as a tool used by executives and business owners who want you to remember their company when you need to do business with them. But, truth be told, business cards are also great way to promote your personal brand by having others remember you when they learn of job openings.

Business cards can be a useful addition to your arsenal of job-seeking tools helping get your information to the right people no matter where you are. They are great for networking and help you appear more prepared and professional when talking to others in your field. But, where do you start? What should be included on the card? With these easy steps, you’ll be able to make and use a polished, professional-looking business card that will help you wow whoever you give it to.

Chose the Content and Tagline

Your contact information is one of the most important things to put on the card. Generally, the easiest way to contact a person is through their phone number and email address. Try to keep it to the number and email, but if there is a method you use more often, use your best judgment before including them. Try avoiding addresses, job experience, or multiple phone lines.

Consider including links to your relevant, work-related social media profiles like Twitter or LinkedIn. If you have a website or blog about your work or the industry you work in, consider including those as well. To help you be more memorable, try including a tag line under your name, like a quote or slogan that describes you or your work, an image, or a logo.

Choose the Design

The layout, colors, and overall design of your card should reflect your personality, work, and overall image. If you want the loudest, most colorful, or most unique business card anyone has ever seen, you should have the demeanor to match.  Business cards come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Play around with the options and use your best judgment to find a look that stands out, but isn’t distracting. Paper choice is also important. If the card stock is too thin, it cheapens your image. There are a variety of textures, finishes, and weights in paper.

Budget is also something to consider. The more complicated or colorful your card is, the more expensive it is to print. If you have the money to spend or have connections, you can work with a graphic designer to create a customized look for your card. If that isn’t an option, there are a variety of online printers for custom cards like VistaPrint, Moo, or 99 Designs that range in price and customizability.

Choose the Time

Business cards are most useful at networking events or career fairs. When attending these functions, always bring more than you think you’ll need. Also, carry them around wherever you go. You never know what could happen, and you’ll need to have one ready at all times. Nothing can hurt your image more than handing someone a beat up business card. Consider getting a special holder to keep them from getting bent or smudged in your wallet or purse. And, make sure cards aren’t bunched in your purse or stuck in a notebook so that finding one isn’t a search and rescue mission.

Use your best judgment when giving people your card. Practice good etiquette and don’t bombard every person you meet with your card. Let it come up in natural conversation or wait until the end and give them one if you feel like they can be a viable contact.

Handing out business cards can greatly increase your chances of getting your name out and help others remember you longer, just by what’s printed on a small piece of paper. How have business cards influenced you? Share with us some of your favorite business card ideas in the comments below.

Touchdown with a Bad Boss – Week 3


Here are the top Bad Boss solutions for week three of our contest! Until September 1, we will be spotlighting three top solutions we've received on how employees handled a tough boss. We will be collecting stories through Friday, Aug. 27, so you still have time to submit your story! E-mail your story to boss@expresspros.com. At the end of the contest, voting will begin to determine which solution is the best. The person who receives the most votes will win the grand prize. The winner could be you!

Stay the Course

Penny started a new job and walked into a field of landmines. Due to her hiring situation, other team members and managers doubted her competence and ability, choosing to judge her before they got a chance to work with her. Her hard work and determination to do her new tasks well began to pay off after a couple of weeks. Slowly she was given the opportunity to expand her role, and her supervisor gave her a new project to work on. Penny stayed on top of the ball throughout the project and made sure to keep the supervisor up-to-date on the advances. She knew she had won over the boss and the team when she was invited to a team lunch toward the end of the project. Penny won this boss and team over by demonstrating her abilities and taking care of business!

Communication Kick-Off
At first, Vince struggled with communicating his job expectations and performance issues with his boss. However, Vince soon discovered that, while neither he nor his boss were good verbal communicators, they could express themselves well through e-mail. So, Vince started e-mailing his boss when he had a problem or issue. His boss was able to clearly see the situation written out and then give a written response in reply. This has cut down on miscommunication and made their communication process more effective and efficient.

Changing Teams
Shari began working at a new company as Sales Manager. She was ready to take her new team on to new championships. However, she met head-on with a manager who had a unique way of managing his staff. While sales members were rewarded for hitting daily sales goals, he ran a tight ship when it came to the work environment. The manager had rules about what items could be displayed on your desk, restroom breaks, and phone calls. Shari chose to handle her role with poise and grace, but after 21-days she decided her professional goals and desires did not match the company’s policies. Shari choose to seek new employment, she also choose to find her new job through Express!