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Showing posts from February, 2010

Mentor: Kevin Beverly, Executive Vice President, Social & Scientific Systems, Inc.

Another feature of this blog is bringing you advice and perspectives from people who mentor, by answering 3 questions:What are mentees looking for?What 1 piece of advice do you give every mentee you work with?Why are you interested in mentoring? I’m inaugurating this feature with a friend and colleague, Kevin Beverly who is Executive Vice President at Social & Scientific Systems, Inc. (where I also work). Years ago, Kevin founded the Mildred Beverly Memorial Family Fund, in honor of his mother, to support the education needs of underprivileged youth in Dorchester County, Maryland. But he doesn’t just fund scholarships. He also gives his time to innovative after-school programs that help Montgomery County teenagers gain the skills they need to succeed.So here are Kevin’s answers…..(and any errors in transcribing them are mine and mine alone!)What are mentees looking for?Affirmation. Many of the kids I mentor are bright and have good ideas but their cohorts may be a stumbling block.…

Suggestion 7: It’s a 2-way street – just because I want you doesn’t mean you want me – and that’s OK

Some day soon you’ll get the position you’re been seeking. In the meantime, you’ve applied for a variety of positions and eventually one or more of those companies has called you. It’s always flattering to get that call and know of a company’s interest in you. But it’s perfectly all right if you’ve decided that you are no longer interested in pursuing that position – even if you don’t yet have a job. While I always recommend taking the opportunity to talk to a potential employer, if you’ve decided that the position is no longer suitable, it’s fine to tell that to the person who has called you.When I call you, you are usually one of a short list of 2-4 candidates for a position. The phone call allows me to further understand your suitability beyond what’s in the CV and cover letter I’ve received. But just because I finally get in touch with you doesn’t mean that you still want me (aka the position in my company). If you’re smart (and I know you are because you’re reading this blog), ma…

Suggestion 6: It’s more than a job title. Read all the words in a job ad, not just the headlines.

I’ve noticed a pattern in job ads over the past decade – and I read a lot of them to keep up with what is going on in my career area. Many of these ads have the same title (such as Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Specialist), and yet they all vary quite a bit from each other. You will be much better informed about your job search if you take the time to read the job ads through completely – even those ads whose position title doesn’t seem quite apt for you. I have seen jobs for M&E specialists that really encompass more program management work – and I have seen the opposite: program manager jobs where most of the skills and experience desired seem to fit that of an M&E specialist. And job ads will often describe the organization which gives you insights into its culture as well. So I always recommend that you read more than just the job title - read job ads and see what appeals to you. As you read more of them, identify where your skills and experience best fit. Your profe…

An unplanned hiatus: Life takes over – and still, mentoring opportunities where you don’t expect them.

I hadn’t planned to take more than a week off from posting but then a family urgency took over. Though I didn’t get to post Suggestion 6 (Look for that next!), I was surprised to be in a conversation with someone who talked about wanting help to update her CV as she begins job-hunting for her next step in June.It reminded me that we all have opportunities to mentor in so many ways – and many of these may just be 5-minute conversational exchanges. Whether you’re a mentor or a mentee, embrace these opportunities wherever they occur.Posted via email from suegriffey's posterous

Suggestion 5: Walk on water and do windows. Be prepared to do lots of windows – but remember that you get to look into them at the same time.

When I talk with professionals just starting out in a career or in a new aspect of work, they almost always tell me that the work they want to do is what they’re not yet very qualified to do. For example, a new grad with a master’s in public health may tell me that she wants to get a job conducting program research because she took some research courses in her graduate program and really liked them. She may even have worked for a professor and helped out on some of the prof’s research.When a new grad or someone with just a year or two of experience tells me they are qualified to run a research project or conduct a field study – because they want to apply for a job titled Research Scientist, for example, it reminds me that they haven’t got the full picture of what is really involved in conducting research – at least in public health programs. Eventually, this person will walk on water, but we all do windows much more often in our jobs, no matter what level we are at.We all want to hire…