Walk the walk and talk the talk “Why the path to being a leader means acting like one”


When you think about “leadership” do you think about Top-level Executives? Politicians? Coaches? Now what about Customer Service Workers, Mechanics or Landscapers? Why does the concept of leadership seem to only apply to those with fancy titles or bigger pay cheques? Unfortunately if you picked the first group as obvious leadership material you’re not alone, so what can you do if you’re in the second group? Taking a page from Malcolm Gladwell’s new book “David and Goliath” you can use your underdog status to your advantage! How you ask?

By displaying leadership skills on the job, everyone around you will start to think of you as a leader and when that happens, well….you get the picture!

Steps that will show others that you are leadership material:

  1. It seems counterintuitive but some of the best leaders listen to the team. Those who talk over others or try to push their agendas come across as pushy when true confidence comes from taking all ideas into consideration and coming up with a solution that satisfies everyone.
  2. Lead by example! True leaders do what they say and follow through on commitments.
  3. True leaders aren’t afraid to get dirty! The business owners and high level executives that get the most respect from their staff are those who are willing to get outside their job descriptions to get things done.
  4. When push comes to shove true leaders lend support to their team when times gets tough, this shows they are in it for the long haul.
  5. Learn about others. I’ve met a few business owners over the years who’ve impressed me with their knowledge regarding their employees. I’m not talking about gossip or prying into their personal lives but rather displaying kindness and interest that shows they value people beyond what they can do for them.
  6. If you don’t always know the answer don’t be afraid to say so. But be willing and gracious enough to ask others or find out.

If you want to find out more about leadership check out some great books on the subject:

“Drive” by Dan Pink

“The Orange Revolution” by Godstick and Elton

“Switch” by Chip and Dan Heath

“The Goal” by Eli Goldratt

“Servant Leadership” by Robert Greenleaf

“Good to Great” by Jim Collins

“On becoming a leader” by Warren Bennis

“The 21 Irrefutable laws of Leadership” by John C. Maxwell

If you want to lead, read these ten books


That’s a wrap! “How to survive the holidays on a budget”

So the holidays are just round the corner and you’re not looking forward to having to scrimp and save when it comes to gift giving… but who’s to say being on a budget means you can’t have a little fun showing gratitude to those who count?

Family and Friends

It’s important to show your closest supporters your appreciation for their patience and words of encouragement!

What to give?

You can give a personal “gift” card for various things like helping them shovel snow from their walkway or make them a special dinner or if you’re particularly handy maybe offer to do some DIY work around their place.

Your References

Why give them a gift? It’s simple; by giving a gift to your references you’ll show your appreciation for their support and remind them you’re still looking for work.

What to give?

Make it personal; place the ingredients for your favorite soup mix (with instructions!) in a reusable jar or bowl, or a hot chocolate or mulled spice mix wrapped in a mug. The bulk barn is a great place to get affordable and unique ingredients. You can make a whole care package like this by placing everything in a basket from the dollar or second hand store, then wrap in cellophane and viola you’re done! You can always hand deliver your gift or drop it off at their place of work. By making up your own basket you’ll save a bundle of money!

Your Network

Why give them a gift? Similar to your references you want to remind them that you’re looking and available to work.

What to give?

For your network, it’s usually better to keep it simple. Either create homemade cards, or if you’re not particularly crafty pick up a few cards at your local dollar or discount store.

And remember by showing appreciation when it counts you’ll keep yourself off the naughty list!


Fridays are getting Freaky

Just wanted to introduce our new weekly feature called “Freaky Friday!” In it, we’ll be exploring questions from our blog readers and passing along information we run across during our work related research. Basically it’ll cover anything and everything career related and maybe even the kitchen sink too!


In social media today


What your profile picture says about you


This week I wanted to share a neat pseudo psychological experiment Jason Seiden did on linkedin regarding profile pictures. It’s funny because before reading it I was thinking of tweaking my profile pic and now I know I’ve definitely gotta get on that!





 Now that we’re on the topic of linkedin…


On Monday November 18th, Careerealism started a linkedin lab. They describe it as a “live web show that focuses strictly on your linkedin strategy,” particularly how to properly brand and market yourself to potential audiences in the most effective way. 


It’s definitely worth checking out!




Just for fun


I know many of you have probably already seen the work of cartoonist Matthew Inman in particular his book called: “How to tell if your cat is plotting to kill you” (and yes I own a copy and yes I think little D may be trying to kill me, especially while walking up the stairs in the middle of the night…but that’s another story)


But did you know he also has a hilarious series called the bobcats? It’s really a cautionary “tail” on what not to do on the job! You’ll see what I mean.




Work Search vs Online Dating

At first glance you wouldn’t think for these 2 things to connect. But under some investigation, I found many similarities and only a few differences.

Generic Sites

Work Search

www.workopolis.com, www.jobgym.ca, www.jobbank.gc.ca, www.monster.com

Online Dating

www.pof.com, www.lavalife.com , www.eharmony.ca, www.match.com

Specialized Sites

Work Search

There are sites specifically based on the field and positions you want.

Examples: www.engineerjobs.ca, www.swatcanada.ca

Online Dating

There are sites specifically based on different cultures and needs.

Examples: www.ashleymadison.com, www.christianmingle.ca

Signing Up

Work Search

For most sites you have the option of creating a profile and adding information about you that would be appealing to the employer.

You narrow down which areas of employment you want (engineering, health sciences, human services)

You identify what regions you are willing to work. Advanced search is an option.

You can contact potential employers through the site.

You can deny or accept job offers.

You have the option to search through potential jobs…

Online Dating

You fill out your personal information, what you want from the site and people you would like to meet.

You narrow down the kind of people you want to meet (age, status, employed).

You identify the distance your willing to travel.

You have the option to search through potential people… advanced search is an option.

You can contact potential candidates through the site.

You can deny or accept candidates.


Work Search

Personality Tests, Educational Level Tests

All surveys are to help the employer to determine your suitability and qualification for the position

Online Dating

Personality Tests, Needs Assessment

All surveys are to help others determine your suitability for them

End Goal

Work Search

To get an interview for a potential job.

Online Dating

To get a date for a potential relationship.

 Overall, these two types of searching sites, represent how revolutionized our society has become, and how dependent people are on the internet and computers. It also represents how parts of our lives coincide with one another, what our means to an end is.

Tina Styles is a Continuing Education Student currently studying within the Career Consultant Certificate Program at Mohawk College. MCACES offers a comprehensive Employment Advisement program for our students. For more information about Employment Advisement, please visit the MCACES website, www.mcaces.ca or contact Lidia Siino, Employment & Communications Specialist at Lidia.siino@mohawkcollege.ca.

Are they really all that different?

Are they really all that different?