All ‘Career’ Posts

27 jun

Is Your Company Depressed?

Kerrigan2Of all the business problems companies have, I think they become more magnified when the chief executive officers lose sight that their organization is made up of people.

In my experience, when things go wrong, the focus is primarily on finance or strategy, or both: but, not on people.

This is a big mistake—to ignore the people who will actually implement any new strategy, especially if they feel disconnected and overwhelmed by your last plan.

I’ve written about marketing from the inside out and the importance of inclusion over coercion. But, is the C-suite listening?

When your employees feel disconnected and that no one cares, they begin to shut down. Unhappy employees are unproductive employees, and this loss of interest affects every area of your business, particularly your customers.

It may be time to come down to ground level and ask:

Is my company depressed?

Here are some signs of which to be aware:

—Low energy and self esteem (Projects often seem to lose direction)

—Poor concentration (Costly errors are escalating)

—Difficulty making decisions (Deadlines are missed)

—Feelings of hopelessness (Recurring thoughts of layoffs)

—Social withdrawal (More conflict, less collaboration)

—Excessive negative thinking (Quality suffers. After all—why bother?)

—Loss of interest in jobs your employees used to enjoy (Productivity slows down or comes to a halt)

If your business is not accomplishing its goals, take a good look within, and invest some time focused on your greatest asset—people.

Copyright 2014 Michelle Kerrigan

Michelle Kerrigan is an expert in workplace confidence and performance who advises clients how to become stronger and more successful. From growing businesses and exceptional leaders to enhancing careers, Michelle develops the 3 keys you need to succeed. More at www.michellekerriganinc.com and www.workplaceconfidence.com

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Michelle Kerrigan on June 27th, 2014 in Career, General, Global/Social Change, Health | No comments Read related posts in , , , , , ,

07 jun

It’s Never Too Late to Start Living the Life You Want to Live

JennaSmithFar too many people have a cynical outlook on life. They don’t think life is supposed to be anything special and, therefore, don’t expect much. These people might have had dreams and aspirations when they were younger but they got caught up in “real life,” and eventually those dreams fell away. Maybe those dreams were dismissed as “unrealistic,” and, instead, the cynics submitted to a life they thought they “should” be living based on the dictates of their families and society at large.

If you are not happy with the life you have now, please know that you have options. You don’t have to acquiesce and just accept things as they are. The time to make a significant change has not passed. It is absolutely still available to you.

If you are feeling the urge to turn things around, but are not sure how or where to start, here are a few tips that will hopefully help you make the changes in your life you have been seeking, whether those changes are in your personal or professional life.

Change the Way You Think

The life you are living now is likely largely based on the image that you have of yourself and the beliefs that you developed while you were growing up. Those beliefs are probably someone else’s (like your Mom or Dad) but you adopted them for yourself, after those beliefs were continually pounded into your head while you were growing up.

Guess what! Unlike your race, gender or DNA, beliefs and self-image are not unchangeable aspects of yourself. They are in your mind and aspects of the mind can be molded and even changed. Whatever good we believe is or will be true for us, we will always be more likely to tune into those things that seem to reinforce our negative beliefs about ourselves, and we will often mistake this for “proof” that this is, in fact, how things really are.

You can change your self-image. For example, right now you may see yourself as someone who is only capable of being a low-level employee because that is all you have ever been. The truth is that you can be more. To do that, you need to learn how to see yourself in a new light.

Here’s another example: You may think of yourself as someone who will always be overweight and will always fail at efforts to be thin, because that has been your experience so far. That can be changed too.

Do you know how to make these mental shifts? You make these changes by seeking out information that will help you make these changes. Try to find some personal development materials that resonate with you, whether those materials are books, articles or even YouTube videos.

Try to stay open to positive viewpoints, especially when they contradict long held self image issues. You will soon find that whatever you want to believe in or hope for really can be true for you. When you start believing in more positive things, you will notice more positive things in the world and, in turn, you will notice more positive things happening to you (and around you). When you change your thoughts you can change your whole world.

Steps You Can Take Right Now to Jumpstart This Journey

“Where we are now” and “where we want to be” can seem light years away from each other. This usually stops people right in their tracks and they give up before they have even started. Try your best not to think about all of that stuff. Just focus on now.

For example, if you have always dreamed about opening your own business, start looking for classes and seminars that are aimed at people like yourself, and sign up for one of them.

The point is that you should focus on taking some sort of step that will get you moving in the right direction. Don’t worry about figuring everything out right now—all of that will unfold in due time. Just commit to getting started. Do something right now, no matter how small it may seem.

You Will Feel Scared and That is Okay

Finally taking control of your life, and molding it to be what you actually want it to be is really exciting, but it can be really, really scary. It is important to understand that it is okay to be scared. A lot of us seem to think that the presence of fear, doubt or other negative emotions is the equivalent of a subconscious warning that we may not be making the right decision, but this is not true.

There are very few people in this world, if any, who are 110% confident in their decisions and proceed forward without any internal struggle. You are human. These feelings are natural. You can’t predict the future so of course you are going to wonder whether the outcome will be good. If you can accept these feelings as normal, you will be better able to deal with them. Try not to view them as something that “shouldn’t” be happening.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Jenna Smith on June 7th, 2014 in Career, New Directions | No comments

30 may

Compassion at Work: Helping Grieving Colleagues Cope

Kerrigan2No one likes to talk about death. It makes people feel uncomfortable and awkward. It’s the ultimate change—the one thing that cannot be fixed or undone. Even the word “death” creates anxiety because it’s mysterious and emotional.

Death shakes our confidence. We are vulnerable in its presence. It’s the one thing we cannot control. We can only control how we think about it and react to it. There is no magic formula in the grieving process.

So, the suggestions I offer are from my own experiences in helping co-workers and clients cope. Hopefully, they provide some guidance and comfort.

Offer support to meet your colleague’s needs, not your own. Often, they need someone to listen. Sometimes, they need advice, or help with errands. Sometimes, they need the rest of the team to carry their load for a while. Sometimes, they need privacy. And, sometimes, they just need a place or a time to cry. If they haven’t expressed what they need, then ask. The best gift you can give is you: the comfort of your presence and the help from your attention.

Try not to judge or teach. Don’t feel as though you have to have the answer to death—no one does. Now is also not the time to pull out the “5 Stages of the Grieving Process” or to tell them what they “should” be doing. Your job is to be there for support.

Be genuine. Avoid sympathy-card sayings such as, “Your loved one is in a better place,” or “Everything happens for a reason.” It’s fake, forced and annoying. You can do better than that. Just be yourself. This is your teammate after all. Think: What would you want to hear?

Be patient. Mourning takes time. If a colleague needs to cry, let her. Don’t push her and think you can shortcut the process—you can’t. Know that each person grieves differently and at their own pace.

Assume nothing. You really don’t know how they feel. And, if you’re anxious about what to say or do, it’s easy to project your own anxiety onto the very person you wish to comfort. Never assume anyone feels the same way you do. This can be very dangerous if you’re wrong, so don’t go there.

Know that work is often a wonderful respite from grief. So, don’t be surprised if a grieving colleague returns to work sooner than expected. Activity is one of the greatest antidotes to depression. It grounds us, especially when we’re caught in a whirlwind of painful emotions. Work provides focus and meaning, and teamwork diminishes the sense of alone-ness.

In the end, grieving is about loss, change, acceptance, and moving forward. Your role is to support your colleague through their journey.

Copyright 2014 Michelle Kerrigan

Michelle Kerrigan is an expert in workplace confidence and performance who has been helping businesses and professionals grow stronger and more successful for over three decades. More at www.michellekerriganinc.com and www.workplaceconfidence.com

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Michelle Kerrigan on May 30th, 2014 in Career, Family, General, Global/Social Change | No comments Read related posts in , , , , , , , , ,

20 may

How I Turned My Life Around and How You Can Too: Tips for Creating Permanent, Positive Change

Several years ago I developed an interest in self-improvement. My life was not horrible which is probably why I never felt particularly compelled to change it. I realized I was kind of just coasting on auto-pilot, not really giving much thought to what was happening with me, and whether I was happy. There was no one defining incident that lit my fire, rather I started on the path, and just kept walking it. Now, I have a life I never would have dreamed possible years ago. A whole book could be written about this topic, and thousands have, but here are a few key points I would tell anyone who was interested in really changing their life, and making permanent, positive change.

Define Your Why

Unless you get super-crystal clear about why you want to make the changes you are hoping to make, you are not going to get very far at all. You must define your “why.” Why do you want to lose that weight? Why do you want to work in a particular field? Why do you want to make more money? Why do you want to travel the world? Once you answer that initial question, ask yourself why you want that thing, and then that thing, and so on until you hit the rock bottom of your desire. This is where you will discover your core values, the things most important to you. Without figuring out your core values, your efforts at change will be half-hearted, and you will probably give up eventually. But, with a strong “why,” you will muster the motivation; you will have less difficulty making the decisions that are necessary. The “sacrifices” you must make to achieve your goals won’t seem so bad.

Feed Your Mind The Info That Forms Your New Belief System And Behavior

Right now, you hold so many limiting beliefs, and have so many self-sabotaging behaviors, you have no idea. You have no idea because this stuff is so deeply rooted, you are not even fully aware of it. But, once you start thinking more deliberately about changing your life, you will start to see more clearly the negative beliefs you hold about love, money, success and life in general; you will become more aware of the behaviors. The only way you will make the changes you desire is to flood your mind with information that is more positive and empowering; information to help you develop a new outlook on life, an outlook that supports your success, not detracts from it. And this is not something you can only do once in a while; you must do it all the time. This constant repetition is the only thing that will help shake loose the negative stuff that has been living quite comfortably in your mind this whole time.

You want to read and listen to everything you can get your hands on. Read about general personal development, read about law of attraction, read about any topic that resonates with you. Different people have different styles, and some will vibe with you and some won’t. Find the ones that do and devour their material.

One of the best types of information is stories about real people who have succeeded in the ways in which you hope. Learning about them will inspire you. If you hope to become a successful entrepreneur, read more about people like Richard Branson. If you hope to run a successful e-commerce website, learn more about someone like Patrick Byrne, the CEO of the monster hit Overstock.com, or Amazon’s genius Jeff Bezos.

Start Going After What You Want Without Worrying About How

Surely logic serves us well in our lives, but when it comes to creating the life you dream of, it can be a real drag. We are so conditioned to plan, and figure things out. When you first start thinking about your ideal life, you will look at your current life and try to figure out “how” you will get from here to there. Then you will start feeling discouraged because you won’t be able to figure it out. But, it is not your job to do so. You may be afraid you will fail, and that will stop you in your tracks. Just start focusing and taking any necessary steps, and things will unfold along the way. You can’t possibly anticipate all the ways your wish can be fulfilled, so leave that to the Universe, and focus on the “what.”

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Jenna Smith on May 20th, 2014 in Career, New Directions, Personal Stories, Spirituality | No comments

14 may

The Stressful Job Interview: 7 Preparation Tips

RobertCordrayIt’s the chance of a lifetime you’ve been waiting for. You’ve finally gotten past the application process and gotten an interview for the job of your dreams. It’s something you only have one shot at, so it’s understandable if you’re nervous and excited at the same time. The key to overcoming those nerves is to go in prepared for whatever happens. So how do you prepare? Here are just a few tips that should prove helpful.

1. Clear Your Schedule

Act as if your job interview is the most important thing you’re doing that day, because it most likely really is. Once you know what time your interview is, clear out as much space in your schedule as you can. Leave well ahead of time; there’s nothing wrong with getting there early but plenty wrong with arriving late. You should also find out if there will be any pre-assessment tests beforehand, which might affect your schedule.

2. Know the Company

Before setting foot in the office, find out as much as you can about the company you’re interviewing for. Researching the company can help prepare you for any questions the interviewer may ask. You’ll be able to find out what kind of culture the company has, and you’ll have more knowledge on your prospective job.

3. Dress the Part

Choose what you’ll wear to the interview at least a day before the interview is scheduled to take place. That will give you plenty of time to clean and press it if necessary. When it comes to selecting the right outfit, dress in the type of clothes appropriate for your job or go even nicer. You won’t look bad if you overdress, but you’ll definitely look out of place if you underdress.

4. Prepare Your Answers

There are many questions interviewers will likely ask. Perhaps you’ve already been asked some in previous interviews. Before the interview, practice answering these common questions, like what interests you about the job, or what some of your biggest achievements are, or even what salary you’re looking for. Knowing how you’ll answer beforehand will help calm those nerves.

5. Loosen Up With Exercise

Perhaps you’re still feeling nervous and tense. The best way to get the blood flowing and the muscles relaxed is through exercise. That doesn’t mean a strenuous regimen a few hours before the interview. Just take a few minutes to stretch, get physically active, or do one of the short exercises diagrammed on NuSkin’s Facebook page. While you’re waiting, you can also calm yourself with some simple breathing exercises.

6. Study Your Resume

Know what you have in your resume from top to bottom. The interviewer will likely ask a lot of questions based off of what’s in there. Be prepared to talk all about your education, qualifications, and past jobs you’ve held. Showing confidence in your resume also shows confidence in your skills.

7. Ask Questions

Once you’re finally in the interview, listen closely and ask questions of your own. By engaging the interviewer, you show more interest in the job and the company. This also makes the interaction less like an interview and more like a conversation. If you need to, prepare your questions beforehand so you’re ready when the opportunity arrives.

There’s no denying that a job interview can be a stressful experience, but you can ease your worries with enough preparation. Following these tips can help you get that job you’ve always wanted.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Robert Cordray on May 14th, 2014 in Career | No comments Read related posts in , ,

09 may

Well-known Companies and Their Warehouses

RobertCordrayLarge box retail chains with large stock and receivables depend on effective movement of goods into and out of the warehouse. Accurate, reliable, and fast cubing, weighing, and scanning systems must be effectively integrated to move products quickly.

Warehouse needs and considerations of large companies are fairly predictable, and industry experts watch the trends to predict changes in the warehousing industry. Value-added warehousing includes storage and system transportation management capabilities. Traffic and shipment needs and schedules fluctuate on a daily basis, so logistics planning and shipment management are crucial components of product movement.

Logistics matter. In a conventional warehouse, high volume transportation of heavy products over long distances can increase product damage. The use of the right flexible Storage/Retrieval Machine (S/RM) can reduce costs of transporting stock through large horizontal and vertical distances in any warehouse. Safe handling of pallets requires the right automated system for tracking and controlling inventory to increase accuracy and eliminate product damage.

The right automation system in any warehouse will also reduce overall costs including labor costs because they lower workforce requirements and increase safety. A typical conventional manually operated fork-truck, for example, handles an average of 15 pallets per hour. Automated cranes can handle an average of 85 pallets per hour, which means they do the work of 15 fork trucks. The right design and installation of automated storage solutions for manufacturers and distributors can triple their storage capacity.

The right automated storage and retrieval system (AS/RS) should be considered and designed as early in the planning process as possible for any high-density warehouse. Large and fast-distribution companies should assess a number of profit-driving factors when deciding how to automate their warehouse, including:

• Labeling applications- larger warehouse capacity for full automatic or quasi-automatic print and apply label system.

• Barcode systems- fixed or multiple applications should provide flexibility for the right barcode scanning system.

• Shipping systems- large automated warehouse requirements for end of line systems to scan, convey, weigh, label and communicate with host and shipping software.

• Receiving systems for automatic slotting, inventory control and inventory verification.

Most of the big box retailers have an automated system for warehouse and inventory control. Walmart, for example, has 42 regional U.S. distribution centers. Each Walmart distribution center is over 1 million square feet, with more than 12 miles of conveyor belts moving 5.5 billion cases of merchandise. Several Walmart distribution centers operate twenty-four hours a day and seven days a week.

Target has 37 distribution centers in the United States, and uses automation as well as manual retrieval of warehoused merchandise. Target employs more than 16,000 staff in its distribution centers and delivers products to over 1,700 Target stores.

Many corporations outsource their warehousing systems. Outsourced warehousing has created a separate industry of third-party logistics providers. (3PL). These providers are gauged according to their warehousing space and services, which are increasing nationwide. From 2010 to 2011, the top 20 3PL warehouse operators increased their square footage 5.6%, from 514 million square feet to 543 million square feet. 3PL vacancy rates are declining and the amount of space under management is on the rise, however, the industry is not building new warehouse space.

The top 3PL warehouses in North America currently include DHL Exel Supply, with a total storage space of 95 million square feet. Genco ATC, closely following DHL Exel Supply has a total of 37 million square feet of warehouse space. In the No. 3 position is Jacobson Companies. Jacobson’s total square footage is 35 million square feet.

The 3PL industry is also growing in the international sector. Pepsico, for example, owner and manufacturer of a large portfolio of billion-dollar brands including Frito-Lay, Quaker, Pepsi-Cola, Tropicana, and Gatorade, outsources its warehousing, freight management and distribution operations in the Netherlands. Pepsico wanted to reduce customer response time and supply chain costs, and awarded a ten-year contract to Kuehne + Nagel for its Dutch warehousing and distribution activities.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Robert Cordray on May 9th, 2014 in Career, Technology | No comments Read related posts in , , , , ,

24 apr

5 Ways to Remodel Yourself (without Plastic Surgery)

JennaSmithA total-self-remodel differs from reinventing yourself, in that it’s about both the inside and the outside. It’s about changing your appearance for the better, as well as improving your attitude and outlook on life. Remodeling yourself takes some work, but if you’re willing to go the extra mile the results will be life affirming.

The following are some steps to take to remodel you. You don’t have to follow this guide to a T, but rather are encouraged to use it as a base guide for the work you want to do on yourself. Please, keep in mind that change requires action. In order to remodel yourself, you’ll need to make a conscious effort that is both thought out and deliberate. You must be serious about transformation, in order for transformation to occur.

1. Define Your Career Goals

It’s a harsh truth to face, but luck isn’t going to rescue you from your dead end job. Do you truly believe that someone, someday, is going to recognize all your hard work, pluck you from the crowd, and promote you? If so, you’re not being honest with yourself. The harsh reality is that no one recognizes your skills until you point them out. Part of remodeling yourself is remodeling your life’s aspirations.

Now is the time to define your career goals.

Ask yourself where you’d like to be career-wise in 5, 10, and even 20 years. Brainstorm your childhood hopes and dreams, as well as what you’re good at. Come to a conclusion about your aspirations, and then identify your goals. Even if you’re not sure what you want to do with your career, at least you’ll have defined what you’re good at.

2. Change Your “Look”

Changing how you look on the outside can have a really positive impact on how you feel on the inside. Although shopping for new clothes and a hairstyle will get this activity in motion, the real reinvention comes from long-term commitments to health, exercise, and beauty. It’s time to define what you want from your appearance.

You don’t need cosmetic surgery to change your face or body. Instead, you can opt for healthier, less-invasive procedures, such as body wraps, facials, and skin rejuvenations. These procedures will help you feel younger, as well as they can help jumpstart weight loss or improve skin quality.

“We believe that everyone has the right to go through the world with confidence,” says leading skin rejuvenators, americanlaser.com. “So whether it’s about looking better in a bathing suit, seeing a younger version of an “old friend” in the mirror, or whisking away unwanted hair, we’ll help make it happen. So you can love what’s looking back at you.”

3. Keep a Schedule

Transformation isn’t going to happen overnight, so schedule in your changes. Keep a list of the changes you want to see in yourself, as well as journal about your progress. Set reminders for yourself, so you don’t forget important activities, such as trips to the gym and daily affirmations. Keeping a schedule will ensure you stay on track while you’re redesigning a whole new you. Plus, a schedule oriented person is more successful in all areas of life.

4. Meet New People

Forging connections can help you in both your career and your personal life. It’s time to fill your life with positive people who support the new you. These people can be met in a variety of places, which should add some interesting experiences to your new lifestyle. Make sure to only frequent places wherein you’ll find like-minded supportive individuals.

For example, if part of your reinvention is spiritual, try introducing yourself to some friendly new faces at church. If your reinvention is focusing on the physical, look to meet active people on nature walks and hikes, as well as at the gym. Finally, if your reinvention is primarily about work, look for connections on LinkedIn, or ask your boss to refer you to some new clients.

5. Put the Past Behind You and Follow Your Dreams

You can’t move forward with a new life if you’re being held back by your old one. It’s time to put away the past and embrace the future, which is full of promise.

If you need to, seek therapy for this part of your remodel. Dealing with your personal and professional issues will help prepare you for dealing with any new issues that may arise. Your past could be holding you back from a happier, more productive future, so embrace and face the pain, deal with it, and move on.

Finally, follow your dreams. Your dreams are as unique as you are, and following them will bring untold joy and happiness into your life. Staying positive and never giving up are important to keeping a commitment to your dreams. Commit to a positive attitude, to working hard, and to redefining yourself and everyone will adore the new you!

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Jenna Smith on April 24th, 2014 in Career, Diet and Fitness, New Directions, Spirituality | No comments Read related posts in ,

15 apr

Mobility in the Workplace

RobertCordrayMobility in the workplace is imperative. Companies need to have physicality and technologically that makes the office fully accessible to as many individuals as possible. The culture needs to be attitudinally accessible as well. More and more companies are seeing that with planning for improved mobility, they get the best talent. Employees with disabilities have abilities, skills, and experiences that add great value to the workplace. Creating mobility in the workplace greatly enhances productivity and eliminates the barriers that can make employees feel under-appreciated.

Benefits of Workplace Mobility

  • Unified productivity between all workers.
  • Broadening the talent pool by creating environment for exceptional candidates that happen to have a disability.
  • Promoting an all-inclusive workplace culture.
  • By removing obstacles to the disabled, expand customer base to include individuals that might not have been able to access products and services.

It can also be beneficial to the brand to demonstrate an effort to include everyone in your workplace culture.

Physical Accessibility

Employers are legally bound “to provide access for an individual applicant to participate in the job application process, and for an individual employee with a disability to perform the essential functions of his/her job, including access to a building, to the work site, to needed equipment, and to all facilities used by employees.” 

This accessibility refers to common areas, work spaces that are generally used by all employees. These areas include, but are not necessarily limited to:

  • Handicapped spaces in parking lots
  • Entrances and exits
  • Emergency exits and fire alarms
  • Conference rooms, break rooms, kitchens and other shared spaces
  • Desks and personal work spaces
  • Hallways, stairwells, and elevators
  • Restrooms
  • Cafeterias

Technological and Electronic Accessibility

This is actually a significant aspect of mobility in the workplace that many don’t consider. Adjusting one’s information and electronic technology to accommodate the disabled is not really expensive or difficult if approached carefully with affordable solutions.

Here are areas where companies are creating accessibility for all employees:

  • Intranet and Internet information and applications
  • Electronic correspondence such as email
  • Software applications and operating systems
  • Telecommunications solutions
  • All multimedia applications
  • Desktop and portable computers
  • Any self-contained, closed products like copy machines, calculators and printers
  • Online job applications

When looking at physical, technological, and electronic mobility in the workplace, it would be a good idea to partner with consultants in accessibility. There are also resources that work with IT accessibility that will focus on technological modifications.

Consultants can help assemble a long term plan for assessing, planning and implementing accessibility solutions for persons with disabilities. This will require determining the company’s immediate and forecasted needs for current and prospective employees.

Attitudinal Accessibility

The greatest detriment to mobility in the workplace is always going to be attitudes and misconceptions. Whether intentional or not, we are all capable of creating the type of barriers that leave the disabled on the outskirts. Everything from seeing these individuals as inferior to treating them too special because of their disabilities are hindrances in many workplaces.

Employers need to engage employees. There should be forums and honest discussion about disability issues. There can also be training that maximizes understanding of disabilities. These solutions help break down misconceptions and dispel harmful stereotypes. Overall, this is going to require adept leadership skills. Supervisors and managers will be instrumental in creating the culture that supports the company goal of mobility. You can again refer to specialists in the field that know how to create environments that deal with these types of workplace barriers.

Conclusion

The disabled have plenty to offer, but only if their potential is maximized in an environment with accessibility. With workplace accommodations modified for all employees, you are guaranteed to always have the right person in the right job. Whether it’s putting in a wheelchair lift or making adjustments to workstations, creating mobility in the workplace adds value to the entire company. The Mobility Resource highlighted some of the best mobility companies to work for some include, Bank of America, Walgreens and Comcast to name a few.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Robert Cordray on April 15th, 2014 in Career | No comments Read related posts in , , ,

08 apr

Machines Replacing Humans

RobertCordrayStarting in 1962 in the automotive industry and every decade since, machines have taken over the jobs of humans. The manufacturing process has been computerized with robotic machines that can handle repetitive tasks much quicker and more efficiently than humans. Some of the jobs that have been taken over by machinery are:

Factory Jobs

Factory jobs employed about one-third of the workforce in the United States in the 1950s. The factories produced packaged foods, refrigerators, light bulbs and hundreds of other items that were used every day. Computerized machines have boosted production allowing the factories to function around the clock while still reducing production costs. The people who were the most affected were the workers at the end of the line and the sorters. These people worked along the conveyor system and packaged the finished product.

Auto Plant Workers

The jobs men and woman did along the assembly line in an auto plant have been taken on by robots. The robots can work around the clock and not bet bored or tired. They do the work of four humans, which increases productivity and reduces costs. In Japan, and later in Detroit, 600,000 workers do the job of 2.5 million workers producing 12 million cars per year.

Farms

Technology has replaced millions of farmworkers with machines that can sense where the seeds should be planted and when the crops are ready to be harvested. Technology has also affected the food that is grown with genetically engineered plants to make it possible to get larger and larger yields.

Dairy farms also require fewer laborers because of automated milking and cleaning machines. The robots milk the cows, push feed into their pens and clean the barns. The cows are brushed and make comfortable with special lighting. These machines work every day all day and night. One person can oversee the whole operation. This type of automation is not common, but it is available and working in dairies in Holland, Denmark and France. It will eventually put hundreds of dairy workers out of a job.

Telephone Operators

Automated communication systems have replaced humans in many areas including reception, customer service and help desks. It is becoming less and less likely that consumers need to speak to a human to get the service they need, and these jobs are becoming scarce. Cell phones also do the job of taking messages, transferring calls and maintaining databases. Operators and other administrative help is no longer required. Clerical workers who wrote up and typed bills became redundant while data entry operators were employed. When a system upgrades to a digital system, the data entry employees also become redundant.

Tollbooth Collectors

Automated tollbooth collection is much more convenient and better for traffic jams during peak times. No longer do people need to sit in a booth while each car stops to pay their toll. There are now stickers that are put on windshields that are read by an overhead monitor, and the toll is taken from the car owner’s credit card. When the last tool booth collector left the job on the San Francisco, California, Golden Gate Bridge, it made national news. About 30 jobs were terminated on this bridge alone when the city made the switch to all-electronic toll collection. The systems not only collect tolls, they also alert enforcers of cars that are not enrolled or try to avoid the toll.

Cashiers

Computerized, self-checkout cashiers have not yet taken over all retail stores, but in some of the large department stores, about half of the checkout stands are automated. This trend is expected to continue, reducing the number of human cashiers. Computerized checkout not only expedites check stand operations, it also encompasses inventory control, sales analysis, pricing, labor scheduling, promotions, advertising and customer relations. The system is able to do all these things because it scans and stores information that is code marked or tagged on the merchandise.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Robert Cordray on April 8th, 2014 in Career, Global/Social Change, Technology | No comments Read related posts in , , , , ,

03 apr

Blurring the Gender Line in the Workplace

RobertCordrayBefore the mid-twentieth century, the inclusion of women in the workforce was limited to rudimentary jobs that stereotypically depict women has house cleaners, secretaries, nurses, or roles that are otherwise secondary to the primary roles being held by men. Times have indeed changed and those lines are being blurred. Many jobs that even by today’s standards are generally taken up by men are now being tackled, with great vigor, by women.

Military

In an industry that focuses primarily on the benefits of being a man, the face of the military is changing drastically. Many women are finding the opportunities that serving in the military provides to be an asset to their education and experience. This influx has opened many new career opportunities to women that were otherwise unavailable to them not even 20 years ago. While it isn’t likely that we’ll be seeing women carrying a rifle for a Special Operations Unit in the near future, they do over many support roles that are performed dangerously close to combat.

Marketing Managers

Stereotypically, when people think of marketing managers, they will think of men that are likely to resemble that of the hit television show Mad Men. With the cocky and arrogant swagger of advertising and media giants as their role model, many women have found that adding a feminine touch to the industry is what is needed. Businesses have responded with positive results as there are many women that are now filling the role as advertising executives and marketing managers. It’s this image of the strong and independent female that many companies are looking to employ as their leaders in the new millennium and leaving those mad men images long behind them.

CEO

While a great deal of women executives move on to become the “boss lady” of the company, this role is still primarily filled by men. Where women excel in becoming the boss is that they take the reins on their own. They go head-to-head with their male counterparts as not only chief executive officers but as business owners themselves. The industries and businesses in which these women become the owners of are vast and depend on their personal training. Many simply find a niche market in an industry that they have experience in. Others will find themselves sparking their entrepreneurial spirit and developing a business from the ground up in an area that shows a demand for such things. No matter which role she takes on, it is sure to turn heads when the boss lady walks down the halls.

Information Systems Management

If there was ever an industry that has opened itself up to women, it’s those dealing with information systems. The reason for this is uncanny as working with information systems doesn’t require attributes or skills that are typically dominate in either gender. This allows for the role to be fulfilled by generally whoever fits the need. In earlier years, working with computers was extremely scientific and quite a logical process. These were two traits that were often considered uncommon among women. This stereotype has quickly been busted as more and more women become interested in computer information science and exceedingly excel in the field.

Software Developer

Along the same lines as working in the information systems management field, many women are finding software development as place to work. This especially holds true in the UX design and application development realms. Software design and development requires greater threshold for repetitive work which is part of what makes this type of work ideal for women to fulfill. Typically, women have the capabilities to be able to work with these kinds of conditions. User experience design also requires a great deal of creativity and innovative thinking. This is another character trait that women tend to carry well. Where software development was once a male dominated job, it is proving to be an ideal outlet for women to do well in.

There are several jobs that are typically dominated by men and the ones listed are surely only a short example. Overall, the number of women in the workforce has gradually increased over the decades and will continue to do so.

If you felt moved, inspired, touched, helped, annoyed, or anything after reading this, please let us know. Our wonderful bloggers really do appreciate your comments and feedback. It’s super easy and takes a minute. Click on comments below.

Posted by Robert Cordray on April 3rd, 2014 in Career, New Directions | No comments Read related posts in , , , , , ,