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RealStreet Hires Don Askey as Program Manager!
Don Askey, recently rejoined RealStreet a Program Manager. He previously worked for RealStreet from 2010 to 2013 as a Business Development Manager for National Accounts. In the role of Program Manager, Don will have overall corporate responsibility for insuring the integration, organization and delivery of the right personnel, to the right client, at the right time. Additionally, he is charged with assisting all RealStreet offices to increase our service offerings to regional and national clients.
To learn more about Don's path back to RealStreet, view his bio on the RealStreet website.
The Key to Exhibiting Confidence in an Interview
When you are trying to land a new architecture, engineering or construction position, appearing confident during the interview is a must. When you seem self-assured, the hiring manager will have more confidence in your capabilities. In contrast, if your responses are tinged with doubt or you come off as anxious, the hiring manager may question whether you are capable of excelling in the role.
How to Act More Confident in an Interview
While having a natural level of confidence is ideal, it is not inherently necessary. Instead, you simply need to be perceived as confident by the hiring manager. By taking the proper approach and adopting appropriate mannerisms, you can come off as more self-assured. Here are some tips that can help you act more confident in an interview, increasing the odds you will make a positive impression.
1. Make an Appropriate Amount of Eye Contact
A lack of direct eye contact suggests you do not entirely believe what you are saying. People who are not being honest usually struggle to look a hiring manager in the eye, fearing that their falsehoods will be discovered. However, excessive eye contact does not portray confidence either. Instead, it can be interpreted as aggressive, as if you are trying to force the hiring manager to see things from the perspective you are outlining.
Appropriate levels of eye contact are not hard to maintain. One of the easiest ways to proceed, is to look the hiring manager in the eye as you initially respond to a question. Then, break eye contact momentarily as you start your next sentence. Finally, make eye contact again before you complete that second sentence or thought. This approach helps develop a suitable pattern, so youll strike the right balance.
2. Do Not Be Afraid to Pause Before You Answer
Rambling is often a sign of nervousness. However, the tendency to keep talking once you start or veer off on tangents can make you appear scattered. Avoid rambling, and appear more confident, by embracing brief pauses.
For example, when the hiring manager asks a question, take a moment to consider what was asked. Mentally formulate your reply for a second or two, focusing on a core point or concept, and then proceed with your answer. This allows you to collect your thoughts and be strategic. Not only will you appear more confident, you will also come off as thoughtful and intentional.
3. Adopt and Maintain a Positive Mindset
Often, nervousness is what hinders a candidate from seeming confident during an interview. Doubts about whether they will make a good impression impact their mentality. As a result, their mannerisms and replies are altered. Essentially, allowing their anxiety to play a role in how they respond to questions.
Even if you are anxious, it is possible to calm your nerves before and during an interview. Instead of letting doubts impact your mentality, actively strive to keep your mindset positive. Remember, you would not have been called in for an interview if your resume was not impressive. Use that knowledge to support the idea you deserve to be in the interview and you have a lot to offer.
Are You Ready to Interview for a New Architecture, Engineering or Construction Position?
By following the tips above, you can appear confident during your next interview. If you would like to explore new opportunities, the skilled team at RealStreet can make securing your perfect opportunity easier than ever. Contact us to discuss your ideal role with one of our recruiters and to see how our services can help you find a suitable opportunity quickly and efficiently.
Article Originally Published by RealStreet
A Guide to Developing Positive Relationships with Your Co-workers When Starting a New Job
The relationships you have with your co-workers can have a big impact on your job satisfaction and career success. When you are disengaged, you will struggle to form strong relationships, hindering your ability to work as a team and collaborate effectively. In contrast, professionals who strive to connect with their colleagues may have an easier time not only working as a team, but also navigating day-to-day social interactions while at work. Plus, engaged co-workers are often viewed as more likable and helpful, which can be extremely beneficial to career development.
THREE QUICK TIPS TO IMPROVE YOUR RELATIONSHIPS WITH YOUR CO-WORKERS
Determining how engaged you are with your co-workers can be a bit challenging. However, you can get a solid baseline by assessing your level of interaction and the quality of the relationships. If you spend minimal time conversing with your colleagues, beyond purely professional discussions, you may not be viewed as particularly engaged. On the other side, if you regularly participate in conversations on more casual topics and can share a laugh with your co-workers, your level of engagement is likely high.
Whether you are disengaged from your co-workers or you simply want to cultivate your relationships, there are things you can do to maintain or enhance the connections. While the thought may seem tedious, it often only requires a little extra effort. Here are three easy ways to work on your relationships with your co-workers.
1. COMMUNICATE EFFECTIVELY
Greet people when you cross paths. A simple hello can make you seem more open and approachable. Further, participating in a little small talk can help enhance your relationships, particularly when you display a genuine interest in your co-workers when they are speaking.
Clear communication helps to establish expectations. If you are generally non-committal, ambiguous or vague during discussions, your co-workers may be confused regarding where you stand or may not be certain that they can rely on you. Asking them for their opinions can also be beneficial, demonstrating that you value their viewpoint and contribution to the conversation.
2. BE COURTEOUS
A little common courtesy can go a long way when you want to create a more meaningful bond, so be polite when you interact with your co-workers. Being respectful of their time is also essential. Otherwise, you may come off as bothersome instead of engaged. Plus, while a little small talk is good, you dont want to impact productivity.
People want to be appreciated for their hard work, and feel good about what they have done. Compliment your co-workers openly when recognition is due. Taking notice and highlighting your colleagues accomplishments can motivate them to succeed on future assignments, enable their career development and create a stronger bond.
3. AVOID CONFLICT
Avoid bad-mouthing or talking down to your co-workers throughout the workday and on social media. Do not participate in office gossip either, as it rarely makes a good impression and often leads to drama. Simply keep things professional and do your best to work together as a team as needs arise.
Article Originally Published by RealStreet
10 Trends That Will Change How You Do Business Over the Next 10 Years
Some business trends go the way of Formica tables, as we learn in study after study (open office layouts, we're looking at you). But others evolve as the world develops, and those trends are the ones that demand a complete work overhaul. Educator and author Josh Levine, who has spent the past 15 years helping companies grow culture-driven brands, has done the legwork to pinpoint the top 10 upcoming trends worth your attention.
1. Employees and customers will choose brands for their business practices as much as features and benefits.
2. Company culture will become a critical competitive advantage.
3. The chief culture officer will become much more common/visible.
"When employment ratings sites like Glassdoor and social media-powered employee opinions reveal the truth behind 'what it's like to work with us' Web proclamations," explains Levine, "for better or worse, every company's inner workings will become visible to the world."
As an example of how transparency will force companies to think about how people perceive them, Levine points to Lyft and Uber. While the services from these companies arguably are comparable, the latter company has been wracked with devastating scandals that some customers might not want to stomach.
"Even when purpose becomes common," Levine adds, "it won't become a commodity [...There] will be those companies who try and fail, and those who will be skilled enough to use it to their advantage... [And by working with the CCO to focus] their full attention on the business tools that attract and sustain a highly engaged and aligned workforce, organizations will become more productive, coordinated, and agile."
4. Companies will hire talent who live further and further from urban centers.
5. Extreme distributed workforces will become the norm.
6. Work hubs--hyper-localized WeWork style co-working spaces--will replace traditional offices and headquarters.
7. SMBs will become micro multinationals as they hire and work regularly with international teams.
These four trends will be driven by both an increasing scarcity of highly skilled talent and the rising cost of real estate in urban areas. Technology comes into play too, making it easier for people to work from anywhere, anytime. And as individuals enjoy that option and demand schedule flexibility, companies will become even more accepting of remote work.
"It's going to be a gradual but powerful economic lift for non-urban regions, particularly those that have relied on dying or shored industries like coal and traditional manufacturing. The trend gives individuals who might otherwise not have earning potential a way to contribute, and on the other side, creates a market where businesses can seek the best talent at the best price."
But Levine cautions that relationship degradation can happen when the majority of work happens remotely, damaging team efficacy. So while companies must get comfortable with non-standard work hours and learn to accept a variety of start-stop times, they also must budget for in-person efforts to ensure that teams can work well together when they're not face-to-face.
"Even bringing together an entire team once a year will go a long way to facilitating great work the rest of the time."
8. The fight for employee retention will lose economic viability.
9. Companies will adopt "work cycles," a business methodology focused on high-speed, project-based work.
10. The majority of workers will need to build their own books of business and take responsibility for managing their own skills and development.
Levine predicts the average tenure of the American worker will continue to fall to below 24 months -- in regions like the Bay Area, it might even drop as low as 18 months. So, as workers flit to different options and explore, companies will double down on tactics like signing bonuses or paying premiums to headhunters for recruiting.
"If you can keep employees, you should," says Levine. "It is definitely less expensive than finding new ones. [But] it is the growth of the trend [to shorter tenure] that will eventually will drag down the ROI of retention efforts. Inside of a decade, job hopping will be the norm for most employees, and even the most tantalizing retention offers won't compete with the opportunity for new work with new people."
Companies can use work cycles to foster high engagement and productivity in a short time, as workers will be able to see the impact of their efforts fast. But the downside is that companies also have to deal with learned expertise walking out their doors on a regular basis. This is where culture becomes so important--if the worker has a good experience with you, then they'll probably accept another stint.
As for why workers have to shoulder responsibility for their own development and skills in this new environment, it's simply a matter of companies being unable to follow individuals through their career course.
"Once," Levine explains, "it was the company that provided the opportunity to learn skills, provided leadership support and access to mentors, but that ability will be limited when individuals hop from one role to the next. I think the more interesting question is what resources and organizations will the modern worker need. I think there is a business opportunity in filling that need."
As you try to accommodate the above trends, recognize there's as much work in changing attitudes as there is changing your logistics, and mistakes can happen in either area. Every company faces this challenge, and none will be perfect. But the ones who will come out on top are the ones that use every resource to recover from errors at lightning speed, and who are willing to learn from others to prevent new blunders. The more you listen and cooperate inside and out of your business, the easier your pivots will be.
Article Originally Published by Inc.
Construction industry confidence makes a comeback in Q2 report
A renewed boost in confidence, along with some new insight into how contractors view the green building market, is front and center in the second-quarter Commercial Construction Index (CCI) just released by USG Corp. and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
The turnaround in optimism should come as a relief to contractors since last quarter's survey saw the index's primary drivers backlog, confidence in new business and expected revenue all take a hit to their scores quarter over quarter. The overall CCI fell three points to 72, the lowest mark since it was established in 2017.
But what a difference three months make.
Although the index's measure for expected revenue fell, reported project backlogs are at record highs in the Q2 report, and contractors' confidence in their ability to secure new work during the next 12 months rose to encouraging levels. The overall index made its way back into rosier territory as well, rising two points to 74.
Contractors participating in the second-quarter CCI survey reported a backlog of 10.3 months, up from 9.7 months in the first quarter. The authors of the report note that the increase in the project pipeline, which indicates contractors will have plenty of work well into next year, could be a result of labor-shortage-driven delays more backup than backlog as 61% of participants reported that the lack of skilled workers is negatively affecting their ability to stay on schedule.
More than 50% of contractors surveyed for this latest report are confident that the next year will provide the necessary business opportunities. For large businesses that have $100 million or more in revenue, that percentage increases to more than 70%. While the uptick in optimism about the next year is likely reassuring to commercial contractors, it could be that the first quarter confidence results were skewed a bit due to the federal shutdown that was taking place at the time.
And while fewer contractors are anticipating increases in revenue during the next 12 months, almost none expects it to decrease. Also, 30% of respondents expect an increase in profit margins, which could be driven partially by an environment of reduced competition as companies struggle to manage workloads.
The abundance of work could also be affecting the green building market. It's likely that fewer contractors are looking at this specialty as providing a competitive advantage because, one, they have plenty of work regardless, and, two, green building could have reached a tipping point into the mainstream so that it's no longer the niche it once was.
Other industry reports, according to USG and the chamber, have not shown a decline in green projects, though, so the shift could represent a consolidation of this type of work into a smaller group of contractors. In general, however, contractors are still incorporating green building practices into a high percentage of their projects, and sustainability is a driver when it comes to their material purchases, although 66% of survey's respondents said the price of green materials is prohibitive.
Contractors see a few clouds on the horizon as well.
Even though 60% of contractors expect to add to their payrolls in the coming year, almost 95% reported some level of difficulty in finding qualified workers. The hardship was most severe among specialty contractors. This persistent lack of labor is also forcing some contractors to turn down work and driving up manpower costs.
Contractors are still concerned about rising material costs, but how President Donald Trump's tariffs will impact their businesses has kept them a little skittish as well. Apprehension about the tariffs on steel, aluminum and other products has leveled off, but as the administration ratchets up the rhetoric, that could change in the quarters to come.
Article Originally Published by Construction Dive
Im a hacker, and heres how your social media posts help me break into your company
Think twice before you snap and share that office selfie, #firstday badge pic, or group photo at work.
Hackers are trolling social media for photos, videos, and other clues that can help them better target your company in an attack. I know this because Im one of them.
Fortunately, in my case, the victim of these attacks is paying me to hack them. My name is Snow, and Im part of an elite team of hackers within IBM known as X-Force Red. Companies hire us to find gaps in their securitybefore the real bad guys do. For me, that means scouring the internet for information, tricking employees into revealing things over the phone, and even using disguises to break my way into your office.
Social media posts are a goldmine for details that aid in our attacks. What you find in the background of photos is particularly revealingfrom security badges to laptop screens, or even Post-its with passwords.
No one wants to be the source of an unintended social media security fail. So let me explain how seemingly innocuous posts can help meor a malicious hackertarget your company.
The first thing you may be surprised to know is that 75% of the time, the information Im finding is coming from interns or new hires. Younger generations entering the workforce today have grown up on social media, and internships or new jobs are exciting updates to share. Add in the fact that companies often delay security training for new hires until weeks or months after theyve started, and youve got a recipe for disaster.
Knowing this weak point, along with some handy hashtags, allows me to find tons of information I need within just a few hours. Take a look for yourself on your favorite social apps for posts tagged with #firstday, #newjob, or #intern + [#companyname].
So, what exactly am I looking for in these posts? There are four specific kinds of risky social media posts that a hacker can use to their advantage.
Posting a photo of you and your office besties, whether its on a lunch break, doing some sort of social activity, or otherwise, may be revealing more than you imagine. Think about the types of posters or whiteboards that are up in shared areas of the office. A poster about Team Softball League Starting Soon means you be wont be suspicious if I send you an email with a link to the latest team schedule. Trust me, the link I send you wont be one you want to click.
NEW BADGE, WHO DIS?
This may seem obvious, but youd be shocked to know how many times I see new employees posting close-up shots of their company security badges, particularly on the first day or last day at the office.
Knowing what a company employee badge looks makes re-creating one a breeze. I can copy, paste, and print myself an identical one with my own face swapped in within just a few minutes. While this badge may not work for access, youd be surprised how easy it is for me to simply flash a badge and a confident smile to tailgate my way through the doors of a company.
DAY IN THE LIFE
When an employee decides to video-blog their entire day at a company, youve hit the hacker jackpot. From knowing the building layout and badge-protected areas to whiteboards revealing company plans, this type of view is almost as good as breaking into the company in real life.
Not only that, but laptop screens reveal the types of security tools and software being used, which we can use to tailor an attack by creating custom malware disguised as a fake software update.
In todays review-driven culture, even your own company is on the chopping block. Whether through Glassdoor, job boards, or social media sites, learning what issues are currently making employees tick can help me craft a phishing email that plays to their complaints and desires.
For example, one company I tested had many employees complaining online about a lack of parking spots, so I crafted an email explaining a newly assigned parking policy and warning all parked outside of their assigned spot would be towed. The excitement of finally having an assigned parking spot, plus the fear of being towed, led to tons of clicks on the fake (malicious) parking map attachment included on the email.
After hearing some of these examples, you may wonder why a hacker would want to get into your office in the first place. In short, being within the four walls of an office gives you the keys to the kingdom for gaining trust and access. From shared credentials on whiteboards to Wi-Fi passwords posted in plain sight, being onsite breaks down the walls that divide us from your company data and secrets. Social media posts can even reveal enough that we dont need to actually visit your company to get the information, since youve already let us peek inside the walls, virtually.
So, before you click share that next work-related post, think to yourself, Whats in this post that I wouldnt want Snow to know?
Article Originally Published by Fast Company