Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Time to show off those awesome costumes!

Happy Halloween from Career Services!
Be safe and have fun! :)

- Ashley

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Leadership Styles in the Workplace

Let's get real here - not everyone in our workplace is going to be exactly like us. We all have different personalities, quirks, and characteristics that make each one of us unique workers; and that's a good thing! A blend of these personalities is what makes for a collaborative team that is able to contribute different things to the workplace.

In light of this, there are bound to be different leadership styles at your place of work too. Whether it be your supervisor, boss, or even coworker, it is useful to be aware of the way they lead a team and what their strengths are in a leadership position.

Here is a short rundown of the different leadership styles you might find in the workplace, taken from Personality Dimensions:
  • Blue leaders are supportive and good mediators but tend to avoid conflict. They are fair to their team and are able to read their staff/coworkers well.They are genuinely interested in developing relationships at work and are committed to making a difference professionally and socially.
  • Green leaders are independent and extremely innovative. They thrive on facts and knowledge and will to go great lengths to finish a quality product. Greens can come off as critical but really they just want to make sure their team is as competent as possible.
  • Gold leaders are organized and detail-oriented. They love to set goals and achieve them. They work excellently in a team environment as they are able to determine the strengths and pitfalls of a project easily. A Gold leader is very helpful and dedicated to his/her team, but can appear strict if team members are not contributing.
  • Orange leaders are resourceful and energetic. They tend to be fast-paced and like to get their jobs done so they can move on to their next project. An Orange leader may not necessarily plan ahead, but is great at  negotiating with others about the next step to take. Oranges have a very go-with-the-flow attitude, not to be confused with laziness or incompetence.
Obviously the leaders you may see in your workplace might be a combination of any of these styles; the important thing to recognize is how they thrive in a work environment and what you can do to be a better team member when working with them.

And whatever your leadership style, use your strengths to your full advantage!

- Lia

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Career and Post-Graduate Expo 2012!

So you're graduating this year. You're considering entering your field in an entry-level position, or maybe you'd like to further your education with a post-graduate certificate or Master's Degree. But where to start? Well why not check out the Career and Post Graduate Expo? With over 90 employers, post-graduate institutions and non-profit organizations in attendance, there's bound to be something at this event for you!

The Expo is entering its 7th year and it is always a great success. This event provides students the chance to network with potential employers and get informed about what to expect from a future in various fields.

It's important to look your best at this event so no ripped jeans or yoga pants! Dress to impress! Many new grads find full-time employment at this event so do not miss out!

This event is NOT RESTRICTED to graduating students; it's always great to get ahead so come on out first, second and third years and get yourselves informed :)!

Hopefully this event will help you figure out what your next steps are. If you have any questions before or after attending, feel free to stop by the Career Resource Centre located in the Learning Commons and any Career Assistant will be happy to assist you.

To register for the event and to view the list of exhibitors visit the website here:

Good luck!


Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Importance of Learning Your Bosses Management Style

Taking the time to learn your boss's management style is important when starting a new position. A bad relationship with the boss - caused by your misunderstanding of what they want, expect and need from you - can make your expereince there, less than what you might have wanted.

 My Advice???

Learn about your boss's leadership style. These include democratic, autocratic/participative and laissez-faire.

Do know the best ways to work with individuals who fall under that style.

Make friends in the workplace and ask them about your boss and the way he/she prefers work to be done and issues to be sorted out.

Clarify with your boss about what he/she prefers in a non-invasive way at a time and location that is convenient for him/her.

So.......... make the most of your experience using these new know how's and use them to learn to distinguish what your bosses management style is - and also what that means for you. Do research about these styles and the way that they can be adapted in the work place. More importantly, learn from those with experience in your workplace (with your boss and coworkers).

And you never know, using this strategy within your first few shifts might help you to make new friends, find a mentor, and maybe... just maybe.... get an in with the boss!!

So Happy Learning Everyone!

Senior Career Assistant

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Happy Boss's Day!

The Career Assistants would like to take the time to thank our amazing boss:
Kara Hammond

Kara is an incredible employer to work for and has assisted us in becoming confident and successful CAs!

Remember to take the time today to thank your own boss! A positive reminder that they are a wonderful person to work for could make their day a little less stressful!

Happy Boss's Day!

- Ashley, and the Career Assistants :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

What Did You Do Wrong In First Year?

Ironically I'm probably not the best person to be talking about what I did wrong in first year; I was one of the few students already very dedicated to my studies right from the get-go! However, I believe we could all have used a little more advice looking back to our young selves a few years ago.

Here are some things I think I should have done while in my first year, and some of my recommendations to you:
  • Get involved! I think I was way too nervous about doing well in school that I missed out on some great opportunities to get involved in extra-curricular activities. There is so much to do on campus! Join a club, become a member of an association within your program, or volunteer for events happening around the school. Not only are these wonderful resume boosters, but can help you meet new people and get more out of your university experience!
  • Sign up for workshops. Yes, it's true, you excelled in high school and got into university. But that doesn't mean there's not going to be some sort of academic transition phase that you'll experience once you're here. A-Z Learning Services offers a variety of workshops that will help you from writing university level essays to taking multiple choice exams.
  • Talk to Your Professors. It can be intimidating to approach your professors in first year, especially if you have some large classes. However putting yourself out there and talking to your professors can mean the difference between you understanding an assignment or getting an answer to something they lectured on. It can also be a great way to get their insight on your field/area of interest!
  • Explore. I don't know about you, but in first year I didn't travel much further than the Pen Centre to get groceries. Especially if you're not acquainted with the city, it's important to get out there and see what the different areas of town have to offer. Who knows? You might find a new favourite coffee place or a great store that you wouldn't have known about had you not stepped on that city bus.
All in all, it's important to look at first year both as a learning curve and an opportunity to experience all kinds of new things. Take advantage of all the services your university has to offer and also look out for ways to get the most out of your time here. You won't regret it!

Good luck; believe me when I tell you that these years absolutely fly by!
- Lia

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Brock Life: Adjusting to Living at Home Sweet ... Not ... Home

So Thanksgiving is over and maybe that was the first time you've gotten to go home since being here at Brock! And before going home you were totally fine with that. But now that you're back at school, classes in full swing and that long weekend was not quite long enough  you're all "oh my gosh, when am I going to be home again? It's only October, Christmas is two months away, I miss my friends, I miss my family!!!". Okay, so maybe you're all still fine and happy to be back at school (woohoo!!) but hey, some of us had a hard time adjusting to living away and getting the chance to go home just reminds you of that. It's totally okay! Living away from home definitely has its ups and downs and there are ways to make that transition a lot easier. Here are some tips I wish I used in my first year:

1. Call or skype home at least once a week, and make your family tell you whats going on with THEM! They're missing 1 person from their household but you might be missing 2-6! Your parents will definitely want to hear about how everything is going for you on this end, but getting a chance to hear about their lives will make you feel a little more connected to home. Share a story, tell a joke, have a staring contest! Whatever makes you feel more in the loop.

2. Create a list of things that you didn't know how to do on your own before living by yourself. You might include stuff about laundry, cooking, cleaning, sending a letter, paying bills/managing finances, etc! Be as specific as you want. Each month take the time to refer back to that list to see what you might have learned so you can cross it off! Feel free to add something new to it as well - you may have realized something else you didn't know that month and learned it too! This will make you feel accomplished and remember why you might have made the decision to move away in the first place.

3. Find some friends to have a family dinner with once a week. Even if you're living in a dorm style residence room this is possible - just find some things that can be made with a microwave or toaster and set up your dinner in the lounge. This is a nice way to recognize the new community/family you have created for yourself at school!

*You might also take this a step further and call your parent/grandparent/guardian at home about one of their famous recipes and make it here at Brock! A nice way to add to tip #2 and also to share a piece of home and tradition with your new home and friends.

And finally...

4. Find a part-time job! You might be questioning this one ("is she just adding this in because this is the Career Services blog?"), but think about it, having a job keeps you busy and earns you money. A part of a difficult in transition for first year might be going from being in high school all day with a part-time job that was keeping you busy,  to university classes sporadically throughout your day with nothing else to do in between. Your classes aren't 8:30-3pm everyday anymore - you might be spending all day with nothing to do before a class, missing home and friends in that idleness.  Finding yourself a job or volunteer experience can help relieve that. Just visit careerzone.brocku.ca!

*This goes for joining a sports team or club at Brock as well!

I hope these tips will help you adjust to your new home away from home! Remember to embrace your newfound independence and enjoy this time!

4 years away and still missing my family,


Friday, October 5, 2012

Order a Workshop!

Hello Friends,

Congratulations on surviving the first month of the school year! If you have visited the career resource centre then you will know that we are there everyday from 9-4:30 ready and willing to help you at your convenience.

I am here to tell you that we get even more convenient and accessible!

If you prefer face to face interaction as opposed to learning from a computer screen and would like the benefits of the entire workshops we have online and more, then I would encourage you to round up a group of 5-6 people so that we can work out a time that works for us both to run a personal and scheduled workshop.

We offer online workshops for cover letter writing, resume writing, interview skills and portfolio development workshops through CareerZone. But, to supplement that, we also offer these on an order a workshop basis too. Here's our list:

1. Accomplishment Based Resume Writing
2. Career Planning
3. Customized Cover Letter Writing
4. interview Strategies and Practice
5. Job Search Strategies
6. Portfolio Production

So like I said, if you can find a group of people then go ahead and order one because we would love to help you learn more!

If you would like more information visit the order a workshop portion of our website.

Finally if you decide to take part, e-mail our resource co-ordinator at khammond@brocku.ca to set up a time that is convenient for you! (I told you we are convenient!!)

I hope to see you soon and good luck with the next 7 months of school,


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The 10 Minute Wonder: The Career Services Resume Review!

Our 10 minute resume reviews are one of the most popular services that we offer to students. We ask that you consider the following in order to assist us in giving you a positive experience when coming in for a review:

Things to Bring to Your Resume Review:
  •  A hard copy of your resume:
    • We require a hard copy of a resume that you have previously constructed in order to properly give you feedback. A hard copy is required in order for us to effectively record our suggestions and comments for your use in the future.
  •  A printed copy of the job posting:
    • Having the job posting with you allows us to effectively customize your personal work and volunteer experiences to make you appealing to the employer. 

How you Can Prepare Before Coming in for  Review:
  • We supply students with free resume, cover letter, and CV templates! Don't be shy, come on in and ask us for one! :) We will be more then happy to answer any of your questions to help get you started.
  • Complete our online workshop for an in depth look at how to construct your resume. This can be found at: http://www.brocku.ca/career-services/students-alumni/resumes/create-resume  

We look forward to seeing you soon!

- Ashley