Have You Considered a Career in Finance?

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woman with notepad and pen woking at her desk

Everyone knows there’s money to be made in the financial services field. But there are many more reasons to consider a career in finance.

The industry offers diverse opportunities, a fast-paced environment, and lots of room for advancement. Are you creative and do you like to learn? Professionals in finance are constantly innovating—quick thinking, rigorous analytical thought, and consistent results are what will get you promoted. If this sounds like a good fit for you, consider these job titles (and their salaries!).

Asset Manager

Annual salary: $125,000

Employment projected to grow 19 percent by 2026

Asset managers are responsible for the financial health of an organization. They produce financial reports, direct investment activities, and develop strategies and plans for the long-term financial goals of their organization.

Actuary

Annual salary: $101,560

Employment projected to grow 22 percent by 2026

Actuaries analyze the financial costs of risk and uncertainty. They use mathematics, statistics, and financial theory to assess the risk of potential events, and they help businesses and clients develop policies that minimize the cost of that risk.

Personal Financial Advisor

Annual salary: $90,640

Employment projected to grow 15 percent by 2026

Personal financial advisors provide advice on investments, insurance, mortgages, college savings, estate planning, taxes, and retirement to help individuals manage their finances.

Budget Analyst

Annual salary: $75,240

Employment projected to grow 7 percent by 2026

Budget analysts help public and private institutions organize their finances. They prepare budget reports and monitor institutional spending.

Accountant or Auditor

Annual salary: $69,350

Employment projected to grow 10 percent by 2026

Accountants and auditors prepare and examine financial records. They ensure that financial records are accurate and that taxes are paid properly and on time. Accountants and auditors assess financial operations and work to help ensure that organizations run efficiently.

Source: bls.gov

The Only Black-Owned 5-Star Resort In The U.S. Is Perfect For Your Bachelorette Party

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By Joi-Marie McKenzie

What happens when you get engaged and you’ve partied so hard in your 20s you’d rather not “party like a rockstar” at your bachelorette party?  Gather your best girlfriends and check out the only five-star resort owned by a Black woman in the U.S.

Salamander Resort & Spa, owned by Sheila Johnson, is tucked on 340 acres of the greenest land I’ve ever seen in Middleburg, Virginia. If you’d rather lie by an infinity pool than turn up at a pool party, or visit a nearby winery rather than throw back shots, or enjoy fine dining rather than stuffing pizza to ward off that hangover that might come the next morning, this is the place for you.

Right outside of Washington, D.C, 16 of my closest friends, family and linesisters descended on Salamander Resort & Spa.

Here’s what we recommend you should try.

The Spa

After the drive, my maid and matron of honor decided to start my bachelorette weekend the right way: with a bit of R&R in the resort’s 23,000-square-foot spa. From exfoliating body treatments, to all types of massages, the spa is a one-stop shop. And for my girls who didn’t have time to get a pedi before they arrived, the spa offered that too along with make-up artists and manicurists. Since I’m expecting, it was the perfect spa to grab a pre-natal massage. Even the indoor whirlpool was body temperature so I could enjoy some girl chat in the water. Afterward, we all gathered by the infinity-edge pool to chill in a cabana and take in the lush landscape.

The Finest of Dining

Harrimans Virginia Piedmont Grill

We felt like we were in an episode of The Real Housewives of Potomac when we tried out Harrimans Virginia Piedmont Grill for dinner. Right there on the grounds, it offers a private dining room, perfect for any large party.

An Easy Trek To The Wineries

After a night at the resort, the girls and I were itching to get off the property and explore Middleburg. And Salamander makes that super easy to do thanks to complimentary car service. We hopped in the resort’s Audis, which took us to a nearby winery. While the girls sipped on wine blends, created from last year’s harvest in Virginia, I took in the sites and dreamed about lunch.

Continue on to Essence to read the complete article.

How to Brand Yourself and Increase Your Chances of Getting Hired

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Professional Black Man Standing Outside the Office

Job seekers who want to break into a new role in 2019 need to think hard about the image (or brand) they project to employers. Building a strong professional brand that is aligned to the companies or industries you wish to work for will absolutely increase your chances of getting hired.

You need to assume that any recruiter that you approach is going to research you online, so you should have pillars in place that reinforce your skills, expertise and interest in your desired field.

Meanwhile, by branding yourself through online content and engagement, you may even draw an audience of followers, including recruiters who are interested in your profile.

How do you go about branding yourself? Here’s a three-step strategy to follow.

1.  Develop Your Own Website and Blog

If you want to brand yourself as an expert, you need a way to showcase your past work and current ideas. A website or blog is the perfect medium.

Just about every company uses a website as a central tool for brand-building. You should do the same.

Don’t worry, nowadays building your own website, with your own personalized URL, requires little to no technical knowledge. Wix, SquareSpace and WordPress are just a few the most popular platforms people use.

The advantage of having your own professional website is that it can house a wide range of content that is relevant to employers. Plus the site alone can be used as evidence of your skills: tech-savviness, eye for design, etc.

Having a website that includes a well-written bio and updated resume/CV will allow employers to find you online. Plus there is a growing trend of recruiters asking candidates for creative job applications. Sharing a link to a personal website where you customize content to a specific job type is bound to impress.

Having a blog integrated into your website can be a major boost to your professional brand. Through a blog, you have the opportunity to write about what matters to you and demonstrate your knowledge of particular issues in order to impress employers.

For example, if you are passionate about sustainable technology and your goal is to work in the field, then blog about it. Tap your thoughts and creativity and produce content on topics that are dear to you. Then, make sure you point employers to this content during the recruitment process.

DOs and DON’Ts of Creating a Personal Website/blog that Appeals to Recruiters

DOs

  • Set a clear focus niche for your blog based on your career goals
  • Produce timely, original content
  • Integrate with social media channels

DON’Ts

  • Get sloppy (strive for consistent design and error-free content)
  • Be too negative or political with blog posts
  • Forget to include contact info (phone, email, etc.)

2.  Harness Social Media

Social media has a bearing on your professional brand whether you like it or not.

The vast majority of recruiters screen candidates by searching them online and reviewing their social media profiles. What will they dig up on you?

You may not want to use social media for strategically positioning yourself as an expert in a specific field. But you absolutely will want to make sure that any of your active profiles don’t hurt your chances of getting hired.

At the very least, every job searcher should do their own audit of their social media channels and determine what content employers might see. Change your privacy settings if needed.

However, ensuring a clean online presence is the bare minimum that you can do using the power of social media. By embracing its many sharing and networking functions, you can cement yourself as a thought leader and get your message in front of those who make hiring decisions.

For example, social media gives you plenty of channels for sharing news and content from your website or blog. As mentioned above, integrating social media with a personal website or blog is a must as it allows you to promote your site to your network.

If you don’t have a blog or website, then you can still share your opinions through social media. Twitter, after all, is a micro-blogging platform, while LinkedIn is a common medium for self-publishing longer-form articles.

When you are totally immersed in a particular field, chances are you come across all kinds of interesting content that may be valuable to like-minded people. Share it!

Sharing content with your network by posting links to articles and videos is a way of proving you are engaged in specific issues. There is also the added benefit that if you share or comment on other people’s content, they will reciprocate or engage with you.

As a job seeker, following the companies you want to work for through their social media channels offers many opportunities to express your interest in them. You can essentially become a “superfan” of these companies by consistently commenting on or sharing their content.

The benefit of becoming a superfan is that you are always up to speed with what the company is doing, giving you in-depth knowledge of their operations. This knowledge can then be used to write an amazing cover letter or letter of interest, and you may rely on it during job interviews.

Of course, social media has also become a popular tool for soliciting jobs. The obvious example is LinkedIn where you can identify recruiters and connect with them directly. But identifying opportunities through Facebook and Twitter can also prove effective.

Regardless of the platform, when you connect with companies through social media, their first impression of you will be based on the brand you’ve built and expressed using your accounts.

DOs and DON’Ts of Professional Branding Through Social Media

DOs

  • Strive for consistency across social platforms (usernames, headshots, etc.)
  • Include your resume summary on your social profiles (especially for LinkedIn)
  • Share content that people in your target industry might find valuable
  • Join Facebook and LinkedIn groups relevant to your industry
  • Follow and comment on content from targeted employers
  • Reach out to recruiters to ask for informational interviews

DON’Ts

  • Use unprofessional usernames or photos
  • Forget to edit all content before posting
  • Be offended by critical comments from others – keep any responses professional
  • Spam online groups with your resume/CV
  • Comment on absolutely everything a company posts – give your replies substance
  • Ask recruiters for jobs through social media

3.  Engage Elsewhere

Having your own website and an active social media presence will help you get noticed amongst recruiters.

But if you want to go even further in establishing your name and building your professional brand, you can look for other engagement opportunities.

Your goal is to make it known to as many people as possible that you have something to offer: skills or expertise in a particular area.

Go to industry networking events in your field. Better yet, don’t just attend, see if you can participate in panel discussions or speaking opportunities.

Try to get published in industry publications, newspapers or online. Many media outlets crave well-informed content that expresses strong opinions about current issues. Be prepared to encounter some resistance from editors, but keep pitching your writing.

You can always resort to self-publishing on your blog, or other platforms that attract talented writers looking to express themselves, like Medium.com.

Continue on to novoresume.com to read the complete article.

Former School Custodian from Denver is Now the School Principal

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Michael Atkins School Principal

Michael Atkins, a former school custodian in Denver Colorado, has been recently promoted as the new principal of Stedman Elementary School. He plans to use his past experiences as a former student in the area and a custodian to become successful in accomplishing his goals in his new career.

As a child, Stedman Elementary had been a part of Atkins’ life. At one point, he was bused to Bromwell Elementary School where he met a second-grade teacher who “took the time and the opportunity to form a relationship that opened a door for me,” Atkins told 9 News.

But he had to separate ways with the teacher when he was bused to Hamilton Middle School. By then, he realized how black students like himself were treated differently even by some teachers.

“Just the different interactions that I had with the teachers, I had the social intelligence at that time to understand there were differences,” Atkins said. “Teachers telling me that I’ll be dead by the time I’m 21.”

By the time he could work, he had his first full-time job at Denver Public Schools at Rachel B. Noel Middle School. That was when he met his old second-grade teacher again and helped him get a job as a paraprofessional teacher.

Since then, he climbed up the ranks as he eventually became a teacher, then an assistant principal, and now a principal. He said that as a principal, he hopes to fix problems of racial disparity he experienced when he was a student before.

Continue on to Black News to read the complete article.

7 Ways You Should Never Answer “Why Should We Hire You?”

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woman looking confident in a job interview

The question comes up in nearly every interview. It might be phrased in any number of ways, but every interviewer is going to ask, in some form, why should we hire you?  The most important thing to remember when answering this question: Your answer should focus on how you can benefit the company and what you can offer your potential employer.There are plenty of right ways to answer this question, but there are even more ways you can get it wrong. We’ll walk you through all of them.

First things first — there are some things, though they may be true, you should never say in response to this question.

1. Because I need the job

This will do nothing to excite the hiring manager. It doesn’t illustrate any passion for the position or company — it doesn’t even express interest.

2. Because I want to move

You’re looking to make a move to a new city, but you have to have the job to make the move possible. This isn’t a great reason to hire someone, because it can make the company feel like it’s just filling a temporary purpose — to get you to your destination. While you should be honest about your intention to move, you shouldn’t use this as the reason why you want to work there.

3. Because I hate my current job

Badmouthing a past or current employer in a job interview is bad form. Saying you want a new job just to escape your old one might be true, but the interviewer doesn’t need to know that.

4. Because I want to make more money

Don’t we all? Let’s be honest. For many people, this is the reason they’d like a new job. But if you use pay as the reason why a company should hire you, its hiring managers could see you as a flight risk — the moment someone else offers you more money, you’re gone just as quickly as you came.

5. Because I can grow your business by 1,000%

Don’t answer by promising something you can’t deliver. Be realistic — you’ll have to make good on your word later.

6. Because I am [insert fluffy words not backed up by anything concrete]

Just about anyone in a job interview can say things like, “You should hire me because I’m a team player! I’m hardworking and creative.” So is everyone else. If you’re going to talk about “soft” skills and attributes, then be ready to back them up with anecdotes or metrics.

7. Because your company would look great on my resume

Companies are probably well aware of this — and it’s not a reason to hire a candidate. Remember to make your answer about what you can give the company, not what you hope to get from it.

5 good ways to answer, “Why should we hire you?”

1. Because I have something you won’t find in other candidates

Companies should hire you because you have a unique skill they need. Think beyond the basic job description — you and the other candidates likely tick all those boxes. You’ll need to bring a skill they didn’t even know they needed.
Let’s say you’re interviewing for a graphic design position. You check all the boxes on the job description and you have a killer portfolio‚ so the reason that company should hire you over anyone else should be one that makes you stand out. Maybe you have experience with JavaScript, maybe you’ve managed people and processes simultaneously, perhaps you have experience with large and recognizable companies. Give them something you’re sure they won’t get from another candidate.

2. Because I bring something unique to company culture

Hiring managers and recruiters want to make sure you’re a good fit for their company and team culture. Be clear and honest about how you would contribute to the office climate:
You should hire me because I see at this company a culture of excellence. I won’t work anywhere that I feel doesn’t have the same standards I do. I’m positive, forward-thinking, and at my last job, I led my team from disappointment to success.

3. Because I can solve a problem you have

You can really pique a hiring manager’s interest by solving a problem for them. It’s one fewer thing for them to worry about and something they can get excited about. If you can solve a problem for someone at the company, you likely have won a champion in the hiring process. You said your customer acquisition engine has stalled and your cost per lead is too high. You should hire me because I can solve this problem — I’ve done it before. At my last job, I lowered CPL by 42% in eight months.

4. Because I believe in your company mission

Companies that are highly mission-focused want to hire teams that back that mission, too. Explain why that mission matters to you and provide examples of how that mission has motivated you beyond your professional life.You should hire me because I, too, believe that all children should have access to high-quality education. I spend my free time working with at-risk youth to ensure they don’t fall behind on their schoolwork. I’ve done this for three years, and I understand the causes and unique problems these kids face.

5. Because I’m hungry to learn

<Let’s say you’re interviewing for a position that’s a step up from your current job; you should show your employer why you’re ready to take on more responsibility. You should hire me because I’ve been a product manager for four years with excellent success, and I’m hungry to take on more responsibility and grow in my career. I see so much potential for this role, and I would love the opportunity to step in as a manager and teach junior team members what I’ve learned and watch them grow, too.

Continue on to Yahoo News to read the complete article.

185 Powerful Action Verbs That Will Make Your Resume Awesome

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applicant is picked by hiring managers

Led… Handled… Managed… Responsible for… most resume bullet points start with the same words.

Frankly, the same tired old words hiring managers have heard over and over—to the point where they’ve lost a lot of their meaning and don’t do much to show off your accomplishments.

So, let’s get a little more creative, shall we? Next time you update your resume, switch up a few of those common words and phrases with strong, compelling action verbs that will catch hiring managers’ eyes.

No matter what duty or accomplishment you’re trying to show off, we’ve got just the resume action verb for you.

Check out the list below, and get ready to make your resume way more exciting.
 
 

You Led a Project

If you were in charge of a project or initiative from start to finish, skip “led” and instead try:

  1. Chaired
  2. Controlled
  3. Coordinated
  4. Executed
  5. Headed
  6. Operated
  7. Orchestrated
  8. Organized
  9. Oversaw
  10. Planned
  11. Produced
  12. Programmed

Action Verbs 13-33 You Envisioned and Brought a Project to Life

And if you actually developed, created, or introduced that project into your company? Try:

  1. Administered
  2. Built
  3. Charted
  4. Created
  5. Designed
  6. Developed
  7. Devised
  8. Founded
  9. Engineered
  10. Established
  11. Formalized
  12. Formed
  13. Formulated
  14. Implemented
  15. Incorporated
  16. Initiated
  17. Instituted
  18. Introduced
  19. Launched
  20. Pioneered
  21. Spearheaded

Action Verbs 34-42 You Saved the Company Time or Money

Hiring managers love candidates who’ve helped a team operate more efficiently or cost-effectively. To show just how much you saved, try:

  1. Conserved
  2. Consolidated
  3. Decreased
  4. Deducted
  5. Diagnosed
  6. Lessened
  7. Reconciled
  8. Reduced
  9. Yielded

Action Verbs 43-61 You Increased Efficiency, Sales, Revenue, or Customer Satisfaction

Along similar lines, if you can show that your work boosted the company’s numbers in some way, you’re bound to impress. In these cases, consider:

  1. Accelerated
  2. Achieved
  3. Advanced
  4. Amplified
  5. Boosted
  6. Capitalized
  7. Delivered
  8. Enhanced
  9. Expanded
  10. Expedited
  11. Furthered
  12. Gained
  13. Generated
  14. Improved
  15. Lifted
  16. Maximized
  17. Outpaced
  18. Stimulated
  19. Sustained

Action Verbs 62-87 You Changed or Improved Something

So, you brought your department’s invoicing system out of the Stone Age and onto the interwebs? Talk about the amazing changes you made at your office with these words:

  1. Centralized
  2. Clarified
  3. Converted
  4. Customized
  5. Influenced
  6. Integrated
  7. Merged
  8. Modified
  9. Overhauled
  10. Redesigned
  11. Refined
  12. Refocused
  13. Rehabilitated
  14. Remodeled
  15. Reorganized
  16. Replaced
  17. Restructured
  18. Revamped
  19. Revitalized
  20. Simplified
  21. Standardized
  22. Streamlined
  23. Strengthened
  24. Updated
  25. Upgraded
  26. Transformed

Action Verbs 88-107 You Managed a Team

Instead of reciting your management duties, like “Led a team…” or “Managed employees…” show what an inspirational leader you were with terms like:

  1. Aligned
  2. Cultivated
  3. Directed
  4. Enabled
  5. Facilitated
  6. Fostered
  7. Guided
  8. Hired
  9. Inspired
  10. Mentored
  11. Mobilized
  12. Motivated
  13. Recruited
  14. Regulated
  15. Shaped
  16. Supervised
  17. Taught
  18. Trained
  19. Unified
  20. United

Action Verbs 108-113 You Brought in Partners, Funding, or Resources

Were you “responsible for” a great new partner, sponsor, or source of funding? Try:

  1. Acquired
  2. Forged
  3. Navigated
  4. Negotiated
  5. Partnered
  6. Secured

Action Verbs 114-122 You Supported Customers

Because manning the phones or answering questions really means you’re advising customers and meeting their needs, use:

  1. Advised
  2. Advocated
  3. Arbitrated
  4. Coached
  5. Consulted
  6. Educated
  7. Fielded
  8. Informed
  9. Resolved

Continue on to The Muse to read the complete article.

Rihanna Is Now The Wealthiest Female Musician Alive

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Rihanna poses in red dress and red lipstick

It’s official, Robyn Rihanna Fenty is the world’s wealthiest female musician. Let’s let that sink in.

The 31-year-old singer, actress, entrepreneur, beauty and fashion powerhouse just became the world’s highest female earner in music, according to Forbes. Meaning she’s out-earned Madonna ($570 million), Céline Dion ($450 million) and, Beyoncé ($400 million), three of the most wealthy women musicians alive today.

The financial glow up is real: In 2018 Rihanna ranked number 7 on Forbes list with an estimated $37.5 million. As Forbes notes, she’s now worth an estimated $600 million.

As for the tipping point? In May, Rihanna officially launched her luxury fashion label in partnership with the French luxury goods conglomerate, LVMH. The partnership was historical, she became the first woman of color to lead an LVMH business and Fenty Maison is the first fashion company that LVMH has launched from scratch.

While news of Rihanna’s ascent into the highest tax bracket in her respective field is a major accomplishment, it comes as no surprise. Launched in 2017, Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty generated $570 million in revenue during its first 15 months.

Then in May 2018, Rihanna launched Savage X, an online-based lingerie company. During the first 40 days on the market, the company made $100 million in sales. It’s now available in 40 markets. Sheesh.

Work, work, work, work, work indeed.

Continue on to Essence to read the complete article

Artist, Icon, Billionaire: How Jay-Z Created His $1 Billion Fortune

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Jay-Z is seated in front of audience clapping his hands wearing a NYN baseball cap

Nine years ago, two unlikely lunch partners sat down at the Hollywood Diner in Omaha, Nebraska. One, Warren Buffett, was a regular there. The other, Jay-Z, was not. The billionaire and the rapper ordered strawberry malts and chatted amiably, continuing the conversation back at Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway offices.

Buffett, then 80, walked away impressed with the artist 40 years his junior: “Jay is teaching in a lot bigger classroom than I’ll ever teach in. For a young person growing up, he’s the guy to learn from.” This moment, which was originally captured in our 2010 Forbes 400 package, made it clear that Jay-Z already had a blueprint for his own ten-figure fortune. “Hip-hop from the beginning has always been aspirational,” he said.

Less than a decade later, it’s clear that Jay-Z has accumulated a fortune that conservatively totals $1 billion, making him one of only a handful of entertainers to become a billionaire—and the first hip-hop artist to do so. Jay-Z’s steadily growing kingdom is expansive, encompassing liquor, art, real estate (homes in Los Angeles, the Hamptons, Tribeca) and stakes in companies like Uber.

His journey is all the more impressive given its start: Brooklyn’s notorious Marcy housing projects. He was a drug dealer before becoming a musician, starting his own label, Roc-A-Fella Records, to release his 1996 debut, Reasonable Doubt. Since then he’s amassed 14 No. 1 albums, 22 Grammy awards and over $500 million in pretax earnings in a decade.

Crucially, he realized that he should build his own brands rather than promote someone else’s: the clothing line Rocawear, started in 1999 for $204 million to Iconix in 2007); D’Ussé, a cognac he co-owns with Bacardi; and Tidal, a music-streaming service.

Kasseem “Swizz Beatz” Dean, the superproducer behind some of Jay-Z’s biggest hits, looks at Jay-Z as something others can model: “It’s bigger than hip-hop … it’s the blueprint for our culture. A guy that looks like us, sounds like us, loves us, made it to something that we always felt that was above us.”

Continue on to Forbes to read the complete article.

Making Strides in Health Care—AMA elects its first African-American woman president

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Patrice A. Harris, MDposes outside the AMA

Atlanta-based psychiatrist Patrice A. Harris, MD, is the first black woman to become the American Medical Association’s (AMA) president. When Dr. Harris assumes her role in June this year, she will also be the Association’s first African-American female to hold that office.

“It will be my honor to represent the nation’s physicians at the forefront of discussions when policymaker and lawmakers search for practical solutions to the challenges in our nation’s health system. I am committed to preserving the central role of the physician-patient relationship in our healing art,” Dr. Harris said.

First elected to the AMA Board of Trustees in 2011, Dr. Harris has held the executive offices of AMA board secretary and AMA board chair. She will continue to serve as chair of the AMA Opioid Task Force and has been active on several other AMA task forces and committees on health information technology, payment and delivery reform, and private contracting. She has also chaired the influential AMA Council on Legislation and co-chaired the Women Physicians Congress.

Dr. Harris continues in private practice and consults with both public and private organizations on health service delivery and emerging trends in practice and health policy. She is an adjunct assistant professor in the Emory Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences.

Source: wire.ama-assn.org

Naval Veteran And Realtor Brings Number One Home Inspection Company To Norfolk

LinkedIn
Demetrius Payne posing in front of his Home Inspection van

(NORFOLK, VA)- Demetrius Payne knows how to use his expertise and skills. After serving in the Navy for 10 years, he then went on to operate a testing facility for aircraft carriers and submarines for 11 years! Interesting background to say the least, but practical Payne decided to become a licensed Realtor a year ago. In September he added a Pillar To Post Home Inspectors® franchise and training to round out the tremendous services he can offer home buyers and sellers.

Payne serves homebuyers and sellers throughout Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, Suffolk, Isle of Wight, Southampton and Franklin City. The franchise brand is a favorite among veterans such as Payne. Pillar To Post Home Inspectors is a member of VetFran, a program of the International Franchise Association that helps vets purchase franchises and it has achieved 5-star status in that program, the top ranking possible. In 2018, one-third of new Pillar To Post Home Inspectors franchisees were military vets. “I was impressed by the level of commitment Pillar To Post Home Inspectors makes to its franchisees,” Payne said. “My previous careers have taught me leadership, professionalism and customer service skills. My real estate experience helps me understand the ins and outs of homes.”

Pillar To Post Home Inspectors, is the brand to which more than three million families have turned to for 25 years to be their trusted advisor when buying or selling a home. Consistently ranked as the top-rated home inspection company on Entrepreneur Magazine’s annual Franchise500®, Pillar To Post Home Inspectors is enjoying its 19th year in a row on that list.

A professional evaluation both inside and outside the home is at the core of Pillar To Post Home Inspectors’ service. Pillar To Post Home Inspectors input data and digital photos into a computerized report that is printed and presented on site. All information is provided to clients in a customized binder for easy reference, allowing homebuyers or sellers to make confident, informed decisions.

For more information visit: demetriuspayne.pillartopost.com or call 757-234-8566.

About Pillar To Post Home Inspectors®
Founded in 1994, Pillar To Post Home Inspectors is the largest home inspection company in North America with home offices in Toronto and Tampa. There are nearly 600 franchises located in 49 states and nine Canadian provinces. The company has been named as Best in Category in Entrepreneur Magazine’s Franchise500® ranking for 19 years in a row. Long-term plans include adding 500 to 600 new franchisees over the next five years. For further information, please visit pillartopostfranchise.com.

The Right Way to Follow Up After a Career Fair (Email Template Included!)

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Career fair attendees walking to event

By Greg Ott

When you show up to a career fair, they just give you a job, right? If only it were that easy. While career fairs serve up great introductions to companies, recruiters, and career paths you may choose to follow, it’s still on you to leave a lasting impression that inches you ever-so-closer to landing a real interview—and a great job.

Being prepared and asking the right questions will help you stand out during the event itself. But when the career fair is over, don’t forget to send a proper follow-up email, too.

After all, recruiters attending career fairs often end up meeting dozens of quality candidates—and it might be weeks or even months before they actually fill an open role or internship position. A great thank you email not only highlights your interest in the company and demonstrates good business etiquette, it ensures you stick in the recruiter’s mind.

So what do you say to make yourself memorable? Use these super easy tips to craft a perfect career fair follow-up email. We’ve even got a template you’re free to copy and paste, along with an example!

Connect Quickly
Aim to send your career fair follow-up email within 24 hours of the event. Why? Recruiters are perpetually inundated with email and don’t always have time to respond to every connection or follow up. That’s especially true after a career fair ends. Typically, it takes a couple of days for a recruiter to sit down and sort through the mountain of messages they received as a result of the event.

But if you can make it into the first batch of emails to hit the recruiter’s inbox, you’ll have a better chance of staying top-of-mind as the recruiter starts connecting with candidates—and even more so when weighed against those who chose not to follow up at all.

Keep It Simple—and Short
There’s no need to reinvent the wheel here. As with any great thank you note, you should simply thank the recruiter for their time and express a desire to connect down the line. The recruiter should already have your resume, so there’s no need to attach it, says Muse Career Coach Victoria Morell, Associate Director of Miami University Farmer School of Business Careers—though if you’re worried and want to attach it anyway, it won’t hurt.

“Keep it light, nice, short, and to the point, but include something that makes them remember you or read a little bit further,” Morell adds. Referring to a personal connection from your meeting, such as a common hobby or interest you discussed, can help remind the recruiter of your initial encounter.

Be Professional
Even though it’s just a brief thank you email, that doesn’t mean it’s an opportunity to act casual. Pay attention to the tone of your email so you don’t seem flippant, nonchalant, or unprepared for a professional work environment.

For instance, don’t open your message with a casual greeting like “hey”—always choose a proper introduction, like “hi” or “hello,” to set a courteous and professional tone. It also doesn’t hurt to err on the side of formality in how you address the recruiter—think “Mr. or Ms. [Name],” rather than a first name, unless you know for sure that the company is super casual.

“At this stage in the recruitment process, you’re still trying to impress them,” notes Morell, likening the tone of a thank you email to a job interview. “Even if you know it’s a casual dress code, you’re still going to dress well for the interview to show you’re serious.”

Try this email template to put it all into practice:

The Template
Hello [Name of Recruiter],

Thanks again for the opportunity to meet you at the [name/location of career fair] on [date]! [Personal detail.]

It was great learning about [detail from meeting], and I believe my [relevant, personal experience] would make me a great fit for [Company].

I would love to connect regarding a potential career with [Company] and look forward to hearing from you in the future.

Thanks again for your time!

Best,
[Your Name]

Continue on to The Muse to read the complete article.

Financially Optimistic Millennials

LinkedIn
women holding dollar bills up to her face

Millennials are optimistic about how their lives will play out after college, despite the fact that they have a collective $1 trillion in student loan, credit card, and other debt hanging over their heads.

“Millennials are graduating at record rates, and it’s great to see that like most previous generations of college students, young people are optimistic about the future. On average, survey respondents expect to land a job in their chosen field and be completely financially independent by age 25,” notes JJ Kinahan, chief strategist for TD Ameritrade. “This is a financially optimistic group that’s feeling positive about the economy, the job market and their own plans. However, they will need to develop saving and investing habits that will help them reach some pretty big goals.”

Redefining Life Milestones for Millennials

“Millennials are a generation that has vastly different attitudes and habits than previous generations. So naturally, their lives and financial milestones after college may look different as well,” Kinahan explains. According to the TD Ameritrade 2018 Millennials and Money Survey:

  • Fifty-three percent expect to become millionaires at some point.
  • Twenty-four percent said they don’t expect to get married, and nearly that many don’t expect to own a home.
  • Thirty percent of millennials don’t expect to have kids.
  • Despite the general optimism, two in ten said they’re never going to be able to pay off their student loans.
  • Nearly 17 percent haven’t yet achieved financial independence from their parents; for those who have, it’s usually moving out of the family home that triggers being financially cut-off.

Planning to Retire Early or Not at All

One milestone in particular is going to need some extra attention. Millennials reported that they expect to retire at age 56 on average (millennial men expect to retire even earlier, at age 53 on average). However, on average, they said they don’t plan to start saving for retirement until age 36, which could be more than a decade after getting their first real job. Twenty-eight percent said they don’t expect to retire at any point.

“One of the greatest investments young people can make in themselves is to start putting money away in their 20s. Because of the power of compounding (Einstein called it the eighth wonder of the world), even with ups and downs along the way, those who start early potentially can end up with more in the end,” explains Kinahan. “Ideally, it would be wise to start right after college, and while some millennials certainly do that, we realize that’s not always possible. Understanding all of the available alternatives, like employer-sponsored retirement accounts or brokerage accounts, can be a step in a right direction. And, if you’re not sure, talk to someone. The sooner you can get started, the better your financial prospects may be.”

Consider this example of someone who begins investing $5,000 a year at age 22 and continues to put that amount of money away until they retire at 67, earning an assumed 6 percent return. They’d end up with twice the money as an investor who did the same thing starting at age 32. It could mean the difference between retiring with half a million dollars versus retiring with $1 million, according to a New York Times analysis. That’s the power of compound returns.

Saving Habits

  • Many millennials are making strides and overall, more rate themselves as savers than did in 2016 (70 percent versus 62 percent). Ninety-four percent of millennials said they are saving toward a specific goal – vacation (43 percent) and emergency fund (39 percent) being the top choices.
  • Thirty-eight percent are saving for retirement.
  • Twenty-five percent have started saving for the education of their children or grandchildren.

Pursuing Financial Goals

Kinahan offers some financial tips for millennials who may need to look at additional financial strategies to pursue their goals:

  • Don’t delay! Waiting to save for retirement can be costly. Giving investments the longest possible time to grow attempts to take advantage of the power of compounding, even with the downturns that take place along the way.
  • Know your numbers. Find out how much more you can contribute each year to pursue your retirement goal. For 401(k)s as of 2018, employees can contribute a max of $18,500 (up from prior years), likely not a realistic level for most people at this age, but certainly a great goal.
  • Tack on an IRA. Grads who snag a job with a 401(k) retirement plan and employer match should consider themselves lucky. But a 401(k) is only one piece of the puzzle. Young adults should also consider opening an IRA and making regular contributions.
  • Negotiate salary. An un-negotiated salary is a missed opportunity. You could be leaving money on the table simply by not asking. Of those polled, only half negotiated their salaries or compensation at their most recent job.
  • Put windfalls to work. Try not to get carried away during tax season and bonus season. Windfalls, even small ones, can be an extra splash of cash for your retirement accounts. If you can, think about “spending some, saving some.”
  • Get smart. Only 32 percent of millennials said they’re very knowledgeable about investing. Free investing education resources are available that fit every learning style.

Source: TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About How Commission Works—Because Money Matters

LinkedIn
woman working on a calculator

Commission can be a confusing topic for anyone, whether you’re great with money or not. Maybe you’re considering a job with a commission structure or are currently in a field where commission is a big chunk of your compensation.

If you’re not sure how it all works in the business world, we’ll break down the concept so you come out a little wiser than you were before.

What Is Commission?

Commission is additional compensation that’s earned based on job performance. When you agree to a commission-based role or commission structure (often by signing an agreement), you agree to be paid a certain amount of money that’s dependent on hitting some goal—goods sold, meetings closed, hires placed, to name a few examples.

What Kinds of Jobs Work Under a Commission Structure?

When you think of commission, your mind immediately goes to a sales-type role (think of a retail salesperson trying to get you to buy that extra pair of jeans). Commission is popular in most sales jobs because their responsibilities are heavily tied to a company’s revenue goals. Having the opportunity to earn commission—sometimes a hefty amount—motivates those individuals to hit or get close to their quarterly or yearly goals.

But commission can pop up in other places, too. In recruiting, you’re often provided a commission on each candidate you successfully place—usually a percentage of their annual salary. As an account manager, you can earn commission on clients you upsell or renew for the year. And in real estate you can get a cut of the money you make selling a property. In fact, in some roles commission makes up almost all of your compensation, meaning your income is variable and highly dependent on your output.

When Is Commission Paid Out?

It works differently at every company, but in general commission payment can be distributed monthly, quarterly, or yearly, depending on a company’s structure and when commission is considered “earned.”

For example, a company may define commission “earned” for a salesperson as when the new client signs a contract. This means that the employee who sold the deal won’t get their commission until a signature is collected and the deal is verified (which usually means they double check to ensure the right salesperson is compensated and the overall transaction is clean and accurate).

Another example: In recruiting, typically commission is earned when someone is hired and stays at the company for a period of time, maybe three or four months. If the new hire leaves before then, the recruiter doesn’t get the commission.

How Is Commission Calculated?

Commissions can be calculated by a set percentage or by a formula. As mentioned above, a recruiter generally gets a percentage of the new hire’s starting salary (usually 10 to 20%), while sales people may have a formula-based commission structure.

Take this scenario. In sales, your total compensation could be 50% base salary and 50% commission. So if your total yearly compensation agreement is for $100,000, $50,000 of that is guaranteed for the year and $50,000 is based on how well you perform. You may earn less than the $100,000 if you don’t reach your goal, but you may also be able to earn more than that number as long as your company doesn’t have a cap or “ceiling”—meaning the point at which an employer stops paying you more commission.

But a company may use an upward sloping curve to decide commission (where you’d earn less than 60%) because they want to really incentivize employees to get as close to their goal as possible—and to even exceed it and make a lot more money. What can be frustrating about this, of course, is that it’s not an easy formula to follow, so it’s not entirely clear what your commission will look like until you receive your paycheck.

They could also use a tiered model (the staircase line). This means you earn the same dollar amount of commission until you reach a certain percentage of your quota, where it jumps up in amount.

There may be other exceptions when you can earn more than the formula typically allows. If you sell a deal where the customer signs on for two years or a special kind of product, for instance, you may earn extra commission for that.

There’s also a concept called a “minimum performance threshold” or “floor,” which is common for more senior-level employees. This basically means that the person must get some percentage to goal in order to start earning any commission—the understanding being that a certain level of underperformance is unacceptable.

If you’re unclear as to how your commission is calculated, talk to your HR or finance departments, or your boss or team lead.

What Happens if I Leave a Job Before Getting My Commission Check?

Whether or not commission is owed to an employee after they’ve been terminated or left a role depends on a number of factors, including what’s defined as “earned” between the company and the employee and state wage law (you can see your state’s rules and regulations around wages here).

Continue on to The Muse to read the complete article.

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