Work-Life Strategies & Solutions

On the Evolution of Work Systems in the Digital Economy

Category Archives: Observations

Oversharing: Your Biggest Cybersecurity Risk Could be You [Infographic]

Having spent the past several months exploring cybersecurity issues, including business-related risks, I encountered the following infographic that may serve as a useful reminder to any individual conducting business online. This includes the self-employed who represent themselves or those representing their business. So check this infographic out for tips on good habits to cultivate for your own cybersecurity!

Via Digital Guardian

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Email Marketing for Financial Advisors: Best Practices for 2019

This article was originally published at ModelFA.com

Email Marketing for Financial Advisors: Best Practices for 2019

email marketing for financial advisors, Email Marketing for Financial Advisors: Best Practices for 2019

Summary:  Email may not have the cutting edge, high-tech appeal of some of the other marketing tactics. However, when done right, email marketing for financial advisors can be remarkably effective. In order to build a productive email campaign, advisors should begin by examining the needs of their audience. A broad-based “spray and pray” approach is the quickest way to burn through your hard-earned email list. On the other hand, highly targeted value-add communications will help you build trust, drive referrals, and stay connected to your prospects and clients. Read on for best practices (by email type) and some common email marketing mistakes to avoid.

Recently, I was fortunate enough to participate in a lively discussion with a thought leadership group comprised of forwarding thinking, young marketers. The topic eventually turned to the effectiveness of email marketing for financial advisors. Although opinions differed greatly on the types of campaigns financial advisors should leverage, there was one thing we could all agree on:  Email marketing, when done correctly, is widely effective.

But what does that mean for financial advisor email marketing, now that we are in 2019?

Read more of this post

How to Design an Interview Process that Predicts Performance

The following content was submitted by Vervoe. The original article can be found here.

First, let’s get one thing out of the way. Traditional interviews don’t actually predict performance. Rather, the best way to predict performance is to test job-related skills in context. Nevertheless, there is a place for interviews in the hiring process. Interviews are a useful tool to build rapport, and even start a relationship, with candidates after their skills have been validated. They can, and should, also be used to answer unanswered questions from the hiring process.

Interviewing is often used as a synonym for candidate selection, but it shouldn’t. Interviews should only comprise a small part of the candidate selection process. In fact, if an “interview process”, a.k.a. a selection process, is designed properly then traditional interviews only need to play a minor role.

Rather than dealing with hypotheticals, I’m going to share a real blow-by-blow story about a recent hire we made. The process included a recruitment agency, marketing, online skills assessment using our own platform, interviews and reference checks. I’ll explain how each step worked and why we did things in a very deliberate order. Read more of this post

Competence is Context-Dependent

The following content was submitted by Vervoe. The original article can be found here.

The same, but different

Is a graphic designer at a major accounting firm the same job as a graphic designer at an early-stage startup? There is an obvious overlap is functional skills, but that’s where the similarity ends.

A designer at startup will have limited resources and even less time. They’ll be required to “ship fast” because the clock is ticking and everything is an experiment. Management will have a relatively high tolerance for mistakes, and decisions will be made on the spot.

Conversely, a large accounting firm will be far less tolerant of risk, decisions are made by committee, perfection will be prioritized over speed and autonomy will likely be low.

How similar do these roles sound now?

While the fundamental craft is essentially the same, the context is entirely different. Success is measured differently, and the respective operating environments have very little in common. Read more of this post

The Unexpected Costs of Chasing Your Dreams [Infographic]

Many hopeful freelancers start their business adventure so they can take control over their time and finances. As a self-employed freelancer, you get to set your own hours and decide how much you make based on how hard you work. You can decide to pursue projects that interest you the most, and ultimately do your best work. The appeal of starting off on your own is the reason why a third of Americans are currently freelance.

If you’ve ever considered quitting your day job in favor for self-employment, you’ve also probably had a few reservations as well. While the work is more flexible, so is the income. There’s less security when it comes to benefits and salary, which can land you in hot water if you don’t have a solid savings. In addition, finding and pitching your own clients can be incredibly intimidating. The fact of the matter is that starting your own venture, whether as a freelancer or entrepreneur can a difficult process.

However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t do it. With a solid plan for how you’ll make the transition financially, you can make the leap. To get you started on planning for unexpected self-employment expenses, Turbo created this helpful infographic. By making a few easy cuts, you can make your dream of quitting your day job a reality. Check it out below:

Via turbo.intuit.com: Read more of this post

How to Bounce Back After You Get Laid Off [Infographic]

The following is information that might be useful to many people out there. I found these tips on recovering from a layoff from Intuit Turbo. Not included in this infographic, however, are their fully detailed tips on what to do and what not to do after getting laid off. So please check back at their site, for “12 Ways to Bounce Back From a Layoff” (where this infographic originally appears), in order to access the accompanying information in full.

Here is the infographic however. Read more of this post

Online Hiring: Can You Hire Someone Without Meeting Them?

The following content was submitted by Vervoe. The original article can be found here.

Today we can do so many things remotely. We can do our grocery shopping from the couch, we can pay bills or buy tickets without lining up, and we can see what our dogs are doing in the backyard from our phones. We even know when our ride will arrive without needing to speak to anyone. We owe that to technology, which has made our lives so much more convenient.

“Space isn’t remote at all. It’s only an hour’s drive away if your car could go straight upwards.”

– Fred Hoyle

Technology is not a substitute for everything though. Sometimes, our practical objectives can be achieved with greater speed but the intangible, human touch is missing. Just like the sensation of a scented candle can’t be experienced remotely, body language may be harder to read and rapport can be more difficult to generate. A handshake or an embrace are not possible.

The hiring process is a negotiation, with a view to form a partnership. Technically, that partnership is between a business and an employee. But in reality, it is a partnership between human beings who need to work together and achieve common goals.

Does that mean that you have to meet each candidate in person before hiring them? Not necessarily. But you do need a plan for overcoming the challenges that the physical distance can create. Read more of this post

15 Ways to Get Ahead During Your Lunch Break [Infographic]

The following content was submitted on behalf of Self Lender.

If you’re someone who struggles to maintain a good work-life balance, there’s a great opportunity you have every day that you may be missing out on: your lunch break. If you’re longing to get ahead in your personal, professional, or financial life, don’t work through your lunch break. Take the time to get up from your desk and do something else that matters to you.

From going on a jog to listening to an inspirational podcast, taking full advantage of your lunch break can actually make you more productive when you return to work. Knowing that you got to take the time to do something you love will help you become a more well-rounded person.

So now that you understand the significance of regularly taking a lunch break, how will you choose to use yours? If you’re in need of inspiration, this infographic from Self Lender will give you 15 ideas on how to make the most of your lunch break. Read more of this post

Stop Screening Candidates: What Recruiters Can Learn from Designers

The following content was submitted by Vervoe. The original article can be found here.

Screening candidates isn’t helping you.

In technology, user experience design is very close to our hearts. We are constantly trying to make it easier for our prospective customers to gain value from our products and services. We try to make the experience as welcoming as possible and take them on a journey.

When it comes to our prospective team members, perversely, we seem to take the opposite approach. When people express an interest in joining our teams, we seem to go to great lengths to push them away. We actively discourage them. We screen them.

To screen:

“To test or examine someone or something to discover if there is anything wrong with the person or thing.”

– Cambridge Dictionary

What? Really?  

That’s how traditional recruitment works. When people want to join our ranks, we try to find out what is wrong with them so we can rule them out. There is something inherently wrong with that approach.

What does that say about us? What message are we sending to people? When I try to put myself in the shoes of a candidate, this quote comes to mind:

“Sometimes it’s the journey that teaches you a lot about your destination.”

– Drake

If the journey is obstructionist and unpleasant, if I’m being screened as if there is something wrong with me, that must say something about the destination.

So let’s change that. Read more of this post

Make Your Job Description About Activities

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