Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Searching For Jobs on Craigslist? Avoid These 5 Red Flags.

Craigslist was not developed as a job search website; its job listings contain both pros and cons. On one hand, small business owners and startups appreciate Craigslist because it’s a free, simple way to list their open jobs. On the other hand, scammers worship Craigslist because there’s no oversight aside from community moderation, so as long as no individuals flag their scam job listings, they can target on unsuspecting job seekers.

Are you able to find legitimate jobs on Craigslist? Yes. But you’ve got to know how to spot the red flags so that you can sort the good from the bad. The following are five red flags to watch out for.

1. No Company Name: It’s extremely common on Craigslist to find jobs that don’t provide the company name, simply because Craigslist doesn’t require a business to include their name. In fact, they make it very easy for employers to post anonymously, so many do. This helps prevent job-seekers from doing research on the company they’re applying to, and limits your capability to find out whether the company is one that you’d want to work for and whether it’s a scam.

2. No Unique E-mail: Many job postings request that you respond to one of Craigslist’s automatically generated anonymous e-mails (for example, “c4fvg-3372107@job .craigslist .org”), which unfortunately makes sure that you have zero idea whom you are actually sending your resume to. Even if there is a business name in the posting, many con artists will use an anonymous Craigslist email, so that you think you’re applying to the company they mentioned despite the fact that you’re not.

It is ideal to see an email tied to the company’s domain name, such as jsmith@company .com, so that you can research the company’s domain name to make sure it’s genuine. To see what you’re dealing with, do a Google search for the company name and check out their real website to see if the same job is listed.

3. Jobs with “No Skills Required" : Due to the fact the form to post a job on Craigslist is so simple and “free form ,” with no established fields requiring job details , quite a few employers keep things really brief . That could be just unfortunate, or it could be because the “employer” is not really an employer at all, and that they’re primary objective is to get contact information from as many people as possible for scam purposes.

4. Check Cashing and Wire Transfers : One of the most common job scams on Craigslist are "mystery shopping" jobs in which companies request to send job seekers large checks ( $2 ,000 for example ) which can be deposited into their standard bank accounts . It seems easy enough — the job seeker gets to keep a portion of the check as long as they wire the remaining funds back to the organization through Western Union.

But the checks are invariably counterfeit, and once the bank comes across the error, the job seeker is out $2, 000 and the scam company walks away with the wired funds from the employment seeker's bank account.

5. Requesting Personal Information: Some job frauds are simply phishing for personal data, either to steal job seekers' identities or gain access to their banking or credit card information. If you're trying to find jobs on Craigslist, never give out personal information like bank account numbers, social security numbers or maybe even your home address. Provide only your email address as well as telephone number as contact information on your resume.

While job searching on Craigslist or any job search site that doesn’t pre-screen its listings to eliminate scams, the golden rule is to trust your instincts. If a job just doesn’t seem right, whether it has one red flag or 10, don’t apply to it.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Can You Really Make Money Online?

While there is no real way to pin down an exact number, it is estimated that in 2012, companies spent more than 6 BILLION dollars on market research?

Companies are constantly developing and improving products, and they NEED something to make sure that it works.

Do you know what they need?  They need YOUR opinion.  That's right... and they are willing to pay money for it.

Click here to learn how to Take Surveys and Get Paid

By offering your opinion on new products like cars, candy, beer, and electronics, it helps companies develop products that people are happy with!

Many times, they will simply ask you to fill out a survey about their new product, and pay you for it.

You could make $20 in as little as 8 minutes!  Imagine taking 5 or 6 of these surveys a day.  Easy work and easy pay that could really help with the bills.

Always Free to Join, Click to Start Taking Surveys Today.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Hate Your Job? Do What You Love!

A recent study by Parade magazine and Yahoo! Finance discovered that 60 percent of Americans would choose a different career.  Think about that.  Almost two thirds of the American workforce desires to be in a different line of work.  Sure everyone hates their job from time to time or at least wishes they had a better or higher paying one.  But to imagine that a majority of Americans would choose to change their career is outstanding.

Don't aim for success if you want it; just do what you love and believe in it, and it will come naturally.  -David Frost

So how do we find a career that we love?

We must find a combination of:

What you are good at: Build on your strengths. You should strive to be the best in your field, which will take time and effort, so you need to start from areas where you’re good. If you’re bad at something, you can improve to the point where you are OK, but you are unlikely to become the best, and the time you spend trying may be better spent elsewhere. In terms of job happiness, being bad at something is really demoralizing. Of course, don’t count yourself out of anything you haven’t tried.


What you are interested in:
Choose a field that makes you want to go to work every day, or, perhaps more realistically, something where the opportunity drives you through the inevitable ups and downs of employment (and life). You can be interested in a functional area (e.g., how do we market new products?), an industry, or both.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Main Hurdle Many Job Seekers Forget

What’s one of the main hurdles many job seekers forget?  Background checks.

There are a number of reasons employers run background checks. For instance, if they see you have many late payments or are otherwise irresponsible with money, they may see that as a liability. Additionally, criminal records can indicate a candidate may be prone to violence. Most employers run these checks to protect themselves from negligent hiring lawsuits if anything should happen.

What kind of information can an employer obtain during a background check?
Employers can look into a number of facts about you, including your credit history, employment history, driving records, and criminal records. If an employer uses a third party to conduct a background check, The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) ensures it’s lawful. A potential employer must notify you in writing if they intend to obtain a report, and they must get your written consent as well. If anything in your report causes an employer not to hire you, they must give you a copy of the report and a copy of your rights.

Employment Verification
Potential employers may want to verify your employment history to ensure all the information on your resume is accurate, including where you’ve worked, when you worked there, job title, and salary. Provide contact information for a previous employer to comply, and remember—never lie on your resume!

Credit Checks
Credit checks are reports that include personal information like your address, previous addresses, social security number, and finances, including credit card and student loan debt, mortgages, car payments, defaulted loans, and late payments. You can obtain a free copy of your report once every 12 months. Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion are the three major bureaus that provide employers with credit reports.

Criminal Record
Exactly what information an employer can obtain about your criminal history varies from state to state. Some states don’t allow questions to be asked about incidents that happened at a certain point in the past. Check with your State Department of Labor to review what an employer can check. Know that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) says you can’t be denied employment only based on your criminal record. The employer must take into consideration the nature of the offense, when it occurred, and how it relates to the job you’re seeking.

What can I do to Prepare and Protect myself?
There are a number of steps you can take if you think a potential employer may run a background check on you:

Get copies of your records prior to interviewing. Order a free report from a national consumer reporting company by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com. Request a copy of your driving record from your state Department of Motor Vehicles, particularly if the job you’re applying for involves driving.

Last but not least, run a background check on yourself.  This is the only way you will know for sure what any potential employer might see.  There are countless services that will offer complete background checks.  E-verify, one of the most trusted and extensive web services is currently offering an unrestricted trial for $1.  Much like running a yearly credit report on yourself, this is the best way to discover any potential false information that may be ruining your reputation.

Get your $1 Unrestricted Background Check Trial

If you’re a job seeker, it’s important to educate yourself about your rights involving background checks, and to properly prepare yourself to answer questions about the information that may turn up. Remember, background checks are as much a part of the hiring process as resumes and cover letters—it’s best to prepare yourself before a problem arises. Good luck!

Heather Huhman is a major contributor to this article.  She is the founder & president of Come Recommended, has nearly a decade of public relations and marketing experience, specializing in media relations, content marketing, and social media. 
Follow Heather Huhman

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Read Before You Write; Valuable Cover Letter Tips That Get You In The Door.

Put the name of a mutual contact in the first sentence.

If you have this opportunity it is the ideal way to start a cover letter, because it immediately sets you apart from the pile of applicants who have no relationship to the employer.  Don’t force it.  If you have nothing more than a name don’t consider it a mutual contact.

Tell a Story, If you can.

That is a tall order for most of us, but if you can relate your desire for the job to an experience or anecdote in your life, do it.

Near the beginning, briefly summarize your career.

In one or two specific sentences, describe your work experience. Illustrate your qualifications with examples.  Give concrete specifics of achievements that illustrate how you could advance the company's agenda.  Remember that every hiring manager is looking to improve the company by adding great pieces.  This makes them look good to their bosses.


Conclude by saying when and how you'll get in touch.

In your last line, tell the recipient when to expect to hear from you.  Do not leave this up to them.  Often jobs are posted before interview schedules are set.  It would be a huge advantage to get in touch with any potential hiring manager before interview slots begin to fill up.

Don't cut and paste from the job description.

If you're applying for a posted job, do keep the requirements in mind, but don't use the exact wording.  I can promise there will be numerous other applicants who do this.  Your goal is to set yourself apart.

Err on the side of formality.

Even though your cover letter will be an e-mail, keep the style businesslike, unless you are writing to a contact with whom you already have a relationship and you are mirroring her informal style.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

The 4 Most Critical Job Skills for 2013

No. 1 Critical Thinking
Critical thinking is a type of reasonable, reflective thinking that is aimed at deciding what to believe or what to do.  It is a way of deciding whether a claim is always true, sometimes true, partly true, or false.  Companies will require that candidates are capable of using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Get a Job Offer
I started getting job offers
after I mastered these 3 things.

No. 2 Complex Problem Solving
Almost all hiring managers will want to make sure any potential new hire is skilled in identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

No. 3 Judgment and Decision-Making
Decision making can be regarded as the mental processes resulting in the selection of a course of action among several alternative scenarios. Every decision making process produces a final choice.  The output can be an action or an opinion of choice. 

No. 4 Active Listening
Listening is one of the most important skills you can have. How well you listen has a major impact on your job effectiveness, and on the quality of your relationships with others.  We listen to obtain information.  We listen to understand.  We listen to learn.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

5 Realistic Home Based Businesses

1.  Personal Trainer or Yoga Instructor

Yoga is a trend that appears to be here to stay and people are fanatical about their fitness.  With these two careers it is extremely feasible to visit your clients at their home or office.  All that is required to get started is proper certification, basic equipment and a touch of marketing ingenuity.

2.  Medical or Legal Transcription 

Both preform necessary functions and therefore will remain in high demand.  There is low overhead with these opportunities.  You'll need a computer, internet access, a printer, audio playback software and a dictionary (medical for medical and legal for legal).  This is easy to start with minimal training.

3.  Senior Care Services

Everyone knows senior citizen population is growing.  This means BIG opportunity for non-medical home care providers.  Services might include transportation, house cleaning, dietary assistance, shopping or simply companionship.


4.  Event/Wedding Planner

While a down economy make limit daily splurges, the wedding and special event market will always command big dollars.  To be successful you must be organized.  Focus your efforts on vendor relationships.  Certification may be helpful but not required.

5.  Crafting

You have probably heard of etsy.  I'm here to tell you that there is legitimate money to be made here.  Time will be your biggest investment with this career and of course creativity is a must.