Standout and Get Headhunted!

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Job huntingIn this very competitive job market, it can be stressful to apply for thousands of open positions. More than that, constantly getting rejection letters and not receiving call backs can get frustrating. Unknown to many, there is no need to look for jobs – jobs will come looking for you through the help of professional ‘headhunters’. They are tasked to search for the perfect fit for an unannounced vacant position in a company. Oftentimes, they contact someone via phone calls or e-mail. Part of their tactic is to be spontaneous and shrouded in anonymity to secure a face-to-face informal meeting.

Sounds like the perfect, non-stressful way to find a job, right? If you are looking to get ‘headhunted,’ here are some pointers on how to lure these headhunters.

1. Attend the right gatherings

Logically, the easiest way to get on someone’s radar is to shine the brightest. Although getting yourself known is a lot harder than it sounds, making a name for yourself is a guaranteed way to get headhunted. Start by being visible and active in the industry. Attend conventions, conferences, and important gatherings where industry experts are present. Make sure you enlist your name and company on the guest list. To push it a step further, research about the recruitment agencies and consultants in your industry; and look for their sponsored events.

2. Use the Internet to widen your reach

Online is where all the networking happens. Get yourself familiarized with the ins and outs of LinkedIn. Have an active profile in both Facebook and Twitter. Connect with the headhunting firms in your industry sector. How2Become director Richard McMunn explained that to gain exposure and interest, establishing profiles in all major social networking platforms is imperative. “You want the content you share between these three networks to be consistent,” he said.

One more tactic to increase online presence is through writing guest posts on relevant websites. Link them to your social media profiles to create a digital CV impressive enough to get noticed by recruitment firms.

3. Manage your online presence

Part of social media management is to have extra care in proofreading all your posts. Never say anything that will be considered tactless or unsavory. Remember that anything you post on the internet, even the comments on random sites, are public domain and can be traced back to you. There are laws preventing discrimination in employment from social media, but that doesn’t mean that you can post anything you want out loud. Be responsible of your actions, and manage your online presence.

Do a vanity search on Google. Find out all the negative searches and find a way to clean them up. Untag yourself from pictures that might put you on a bad light.

4. Create a connection with headhunters

Usually, there are only a handful of headhunters in a sector. They are the go-to source for many companies in a certain field to find a candidate for specialized job openings. Creating a connection with them can make you standout. Of course, part of this networking is to get on their good side. Start out by helping them find a right fit for some spots that you have no interest in. Tell them about your agenda and when the time comes that an opportunity arises, you are among the first in line.

5. Keep your online resumes up-to-date

Sure, headhunters won’t really scour the job databases for millions of online CVs. However, general recruiters will, and you will have higher chances of getting noticed if you have an up-to-date resume on all related job search engines available. Middle-level spots are being offered there as well, and although not as lucrative as those offered by headhunters, they are definitely great offers. Jonathan Krogdall, a headhunter at the Curzon Partnership, said that “recruiters working on behalf of an agency tend to be quite reactive and search existing CV databases, so it’s worth keeping yourself in the loop.”

You can also use middle-level employment as your springboard for higher spots. In fact, headhunters would prefer those who are currently employed rather than jobless applicants.

Have you been headhunted? What is your plan to get these headhunters going your way?

 

 

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Tips for Parents: Awareness on Cyberbullying

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CyberBullying

Perceived as a problem that only affects adolescents, cyberbullying has taken its toll in the lives of kids. As children become tech-reliant, there’s an increasing potential for them to be victimized online. According to Common Sense Media, children aged 7-8 years old are more likely to experience online mischief, especially when they visit sites where they can interact with other users.

Cyberbullying comes in different forms: flaming (intense argument), exclusion (singled out), masquerading (creating fake identities to harass), and outing (revealing private information to the public). As parents, the key here is to prevent this online mischief from targeting your kids. As your child matures, it’s best to instill good habits to prevent against future cyber predators.

Smartphone Security

According to Endcyberbullying.org, the latest wave of bullying incidents emanated from too much mobile phone usage. Since most of them are engaged in social networking sites, they can participate in chat sessions where they are oppressed by people who upload photos and videos with malicious content. To prevent this from happening, you should start with the basics:

·         Finding the right mobile phone

The key to finding the right gizmo is to purchase one with a built-in security feature. A perfect example would be the Samsung Galaxy S4. The device is equipped with Samsung’s KNOX Solutions Security. It’s an Android-based solution engineered to set parameters on the open source nature of the platform.

·         Installing Parental Controls

Using this software is ideal as they act on your behalf in supervising your kid’s activities by preventing access to malicious websites. In most cases, there’s no need to keep this a secret to your kids. Prevention becomes more successful when there’s a trust between you and your child.

Know your Child’s Friends

According to Parent Further, staying involved in your kid’s network gives a positive influence. It is advisable to impose a set of rules when they go out or stay over at a friend’s house for school project. Moreover, it is imperative to have an open communication with them. After arriving from school, you can talk about how his day went, what he learned, and what’s going on with his friends. It is also essential to develop a dynamic relationship with the teachers as well. During Parents-Teachers meetings, you can ask for your child’s evaluation sheet and discuss how he behaves with his peers.

Enroll your Kid to a Reputable Institution

Since most cases of bullying happen in schools, you need to evaluate the culture of the school where you plan to send your child. This includes the chance to assess whether the classrooms and the learning facilities are conducive for learning. It is important to take some time visiting the school to get a first hand experience of the place. Make sure that the institution is running an anti-bullying program to guarantee your kid’s safety. Aside from these, consider the caring environment offered by teachers and administrators. According to TIME.com, the relationship of a teacher and a child is far more important than the curriculum.

Watch Out for Signs

According to Parenting Expert Michele Borba, the best way to prevent cyber predators is to recognize warning signs. On that note, here are some signs you need to observe:

·         Bad behavior

According to Monica Vila of Theonlinemom.com, children tend to misbehave when some people are making their lives “miserable.”

·         Social withdrawal

It happens when there’s a tremendous change in your kid’s online activities and engagements.

·         Fear of technology

Instead of spending time online, your child diverts his attention towards other activities. Also, it’s when he suffers from occasional anxiety attacks each time a text message pops up.

Widely spread, we cannot stop cyberbullying from happening. However, we can help our child veer away from possible ways that could lead to this scenario and mold them in a way that they won’t let this interfere with their development in school and as an individual.

Do you have other tips you want to share with other readers? Leave a comment below.

 

 

 

The Gamification of Apps

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APpsApps are rapidly turning into games. Obviously, apps that are already games aren’t what we’re talking about, here – instead, it’s apps that are designed without gaming in mind that are being influenced by games and their ability to incentivize the way we engage with them. These days, you’re just as likely to level up in a social check-in app as you are in an RPG – and that’s fantastic.

It has however been suggested that this may be the wrong approach – that so many apps are gamififying their mechanics to the point where it’s impossible to find a social iPhone app that works straightforwardly, rather than constantly awards you badges and experience points. While these incentives do reward users, apps should retain some level of purity, and as Ingrid Lunden states, this approach means that “many of the apps using the technique are becoming noise themselves.”

It’s true – play a session of Angry Birds and all the mechanics fit because you’re playing a game. But if you then start to find star ratings and unlocks inside your banking app, it’s not unlikely that the app will not be as efficient or fully-featured as it could be because the incentives have begun to replace the actual features.

Foursquare is definitely a service that worked very well and had a noticeable presence when it first launched, but these days it’s easy to feel that someone’s a bit odd when they’re still auto-tweeting the fact they’ve become Mayor of their local Starbucks in 2013. The reason for this is that while the app had medals and various accomplishments, it was essentially built around its gamification mechanics and offered little else – there was no real need to have a service to tell people where you were unless you were really keen on helping burglars.

The ideal approach to gamification would be to appreciate why you might need it, as if you have to give people badges and experience points to use your app, it might be worth considering that the app by itself lacks incentives for extended or regular use. Perhaps the best approach for all of these gamified apps appearing on the marketplace would be for us to only opt for those what would be great to start with, rather than ones where we’re paying for an app, just for mechanics that exist in a thousand other ones.

Gartner, the information technology research and advisory firm, recently published a report stating that gamified apps are going to fail 80% of the time if your reason for involving game mechanics in your software is purely due to novelty and hype. If all of those badges and points have no real meaning or use, then you’re just adding noise to a quiet room. These are wise words, and it’s definitely something to consider as a consumer – if you’re paying for apps, try and opt for the ones where gamification is used intelligently and really rewards you – don’t be fooled by shiny stickers.

 

Suffering from FOMO? Here’s how you YOLO!!!

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YOLOIt turns out that there’s an issue in the social media community that goes by the acronym FOMO – Fear of Missing Out. According to Mashable, it’s something suffered by a considerable 56% of social media users, which is pretty considerable. But given that it’s just another cause of social media addiction, it’s a problem that can be dealt with by changing the way we see social media and our interaction with it.

YOLO

A lot of you are likely aware of this phrase, and the majority of you probably dislike it somewhat vehemently. But hey! Put down the pitchforks and torches for a second and hear me out. The wonderful thing about YOLO – You Only Live Once – is that it’s true! You only get to do this particular run once, regardless of your beliefs, so you may as well make it enjoyable, right?

As a result, that may mean you’re worried about missing out on opportunities and so on, contributing to the social media-related anxiety known as FOMO. But don’t fear – you’ve simply got to change the way you prioritise your social media habits. First of all, stop looking at it all the time! You might have your laptop with you in the park, but you could be writing the next great novel, not endlessly flicking through someone’s holiday photos! I’m just as guilty of this as you are, but you’re not going to get that great new job, meet the person of your dreams and go cycling across China if you’re sat updating your Facebook status once an hour, are you?

Additionally, look at Facebook as a source of opportunities not via the main feed, most of the time, but via the Events page. The same goes for Twitter – try and find accounts that tweet events rather than endless updates and you’ll find you do less tweet reading and more going out. This is important, because it alleviates your FOMO and sure makes you feel a little YOLO!

Don’t be antisocial 

Now, I know I’ve recommended you step away, but there’s no need to stop checking in altogether – social media is a vital tool for interacting with other human beings in 2013, whether you like it or not. But again, you’ve got to think about the way in which you’re engaging with the content on display for you at all times.

Firstly, see social media as a communications tool and something to pass the time in between doing other things – not as a priority. There’s a difference between poking through your Facebook feed while you’re waiting for a bus and doing the same while you’re on a conference call at work – social media is simply a bunch of your buddies chatting, for most of us, and if you wouldn’t ring or text them during that call, then social media is out, too!

There is of course an argument for using it professionally, and this is fine – some people actually help their careers by being active social media users. But there are ways to achieve this without a constant need for contact with social media. Smart uses of scheduling and writing updates and so on in advance means that you can set it all up at the beginning of the day, week or month and then you only have to check in on people’s responses, rather than submitting the time-consuming stuff yourself.

Some parting thoughts

Finally, don’t demonise your social media use. It’s a good suite of tools and it’s helped more people connect than ever before. It gets a bad rap in the press because it’s addictive and a lot of children are tapping into it too, but realistically it’s also because sometimes the people writing those articles and appearing on talk shows to remonstrate with social media users are similar to those who used to think TV was “the devil.” Pinch of salt, and don’t FOMO – just YOLO!

Facebook: “just the F, please.”

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FacebookFacebook has become one of the most famous brands on the planet. It’s completely unavoidable, far more so than Twitter – even your grandparents might be on it! A big part of the daily lives of hundreds of millions of people, Mark Zuckerberg’s college IT project has changed the social landscape forever and helped usher in the digital era. Out with the SMS, in with the Facebook message.

Their redesigned news feed has actually reduced the brand to something even more minimalistic than their existing site design: the Facebook logo is now just the famous “f” symbol. It’s great news for those who’d rather their feed wasn’t being partially taken up by the full name, but also proves a point that’s less than subtle – everyone knows what the “f” means, and new users are already aware of the service.

They’re also beginning to move away from text and focus on image sharing, which is definitely in tune with the view that today’s average internet user prefers pictures to words. A shame for those who love the craft of the written word, but for social, Facebook are bringing their A-game towards photos and other images, as services like Imgur continue to take off into low orbit in terms of popularity, while Facebook struggles to stay as valuable as it claims to be for its IPO.

They also want a better mobile experience, despite the app – an odd aim given that they already have mobile apps whether you’re tooling around on Android, iPhone or anything else – and feel like you should be able to access their social platform easily regardless of the device or software you’re using. Facebook are a company that really understands user desires, and while they do consistently raise red flags when it comes to data privacy/protection, as far as user experience goes, they’re headed in the right direction.

But are they becoming slightly too confident? Their IPO really didn’t go as well as they or anybody else had hoped, and their critics were proved to be right – their number of users is false given many accounts are fake, and the average Facebook user isn’t actually worth much money, if any at all. They were built on supplying services that are free, and as with Twitter, it has proven difficult to capitalise on their user base without being seen as extortionists.

They are however in the odd position of having no competition whatsoever for the service they provide, which, while something of a relief also means that it’s up to them and them alone to reinvent themselves and innovate. While the “f” move is more “look at us” than “here’s a new feature,” they’re definitely trying to simplify and streamline the reasons why people engage with the platform at all, and it’s an interesting step that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Facebook Heads arrives for iPhone and iPad

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After the long wait, iOS users can now enjoy the new Facebook chat option where you can see a picture of your contacts in a bubble-shaped icon whenever they message you. Although the Facebook Chat Heads is one of the primary features of the Facebook Home for Android, Apple device users will now receive this feature with the recent mobile updates.

At the All Things D mobile event held this week, Facebook chief technology officer Mike Schroepfer and Mobile Engineering vice president Cory Ondrejka made an official announcement that the quirky messaging experience on the Facebook Home will now be available to iPhone and iPad.

In the article published by Mashable.com, Facebook said that “iPhone users who download the update will start to see Chat Heads pop up over the next couple of weeks.”

Creating a more playful and dynamic messaging interface, the Chat Heads were designed to show the profile picture of your contacts that signifies a new message thread. The pictures appear in a floating bubble-like heads on your screen. Users will need to click on the picture in order to open the message thread.

So, what’s the difference between the Chat Heads for Android and iOS? Without the interface, the Facebook Heads will only work inside the application, unlike in Android, where users can interact with their Facebook directly on their Home page, as explained by the Facebook executives.

The new Facebook app will soon be available on the Apple’s App Store, although the Chat Heads might take a few weeks to reach other users. The new version will have bigger and bolder News Feed design and will introduce digital stickers to the messaging system.

The integration of Chat Heads to the iOS app does not indicate that the Facebook Home will be available for Apple devices. Facebook is sill focused on targeting the larger market of Android users. Recently, the new Facebook-centric UI become available in the United States, giving Android Smartphone users more access to their favorite social site. The new UI is now available for the Samsung Galaxy SIII, the Samsung Galaxy Note II, the HTC One X, and the HTX One X+. We will also expect the upcoming Samsung Galaxy SIV and HTC One to have the Facebook Home interface, but for now, HTC First, which will be out on the international market later this year, will be the first device to carry the full interface.

Facebook HEadsIf you enjoy accessing your Facebook profile and connecting with your friends to this social page, then the Facebook Home will be your best option, as long as you have an Android device. Since the Facebook Home for Android might take a few more months to be released, it seems you’ll find the upcoming HTC First with pre-installed Facebook Home, a great Smartphone to buy, although you might find its specs disappointing.

Although talks about the Facebook Home continue to spread, early reviews showed a bad start for the UI considering it only has an overall average of 2.4 Stars on Google Play since its debut. However, we cannot purely judge the interface just yet; Facebook Home still has a lot more to run with the release of its first mobile, HTC First.

Using iOS Apps Can Boost Your Follower Count

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Twitter_Losing FollowersYou could be running a Facebook fan page, a Twitter account or even a Tumblog, but if you’re not staying on top of how frequently you post, your followers and their reaching out to you, or keeping everything up-to-date, people will soon lose interest.

The reason people sit on rollercoasters is the thrill, knowing that they’re not just travelling at high speed, but because there are rises and falls and loop-the-loops. Social media is no different – people want their social feeds to constantly keep their minds stimulated, and a lack of content or creativity can be really off-putting.

One of the mistakes people make is the assumption that if you’re really pushing your social media activity, you should be doing it in an almost office-like (or an actual office) environment. This isn’t a good idea – in fact, the more mobile you are, the more impressively organised your feed looks and the more content you’ll end up posting.

After all, all those apps on your iPhone can add a huge variety of media, rather than 140-character text posts. Think about using services like Vine – six-second video snapshots that can be cut and sliced up to look fantastic. Perhaps also YouTube, or Instagram – anything that allows people to look, and watch, rather than solely read. A multimedia feed is always going to stimulate more minds more than a constant flow of text.

There are also buffer services that can really add to your ability to constantly output content without having to manually do so over the course of the day. Services like the Buffer iOS app mean that you will be able to slowly push out fifty content-filled tweets over twenty-four hours to ensure it’s never quiet on your social front, even though you only spent a concentrated hour or two putting them all together. Doesn’t have to be fifty, of course, but at least twenty or so tweets that aren’t responses and manual, quick tweets are great.

If you blog, commit. In today’s environment, a burst of blog posts going onto social platforms for promotional purposes followed by a vanishing act don’t go down well. Social media is a double-edged blade, as it can make you look incredibly busy and incredibly lazy at the same time – often with the same tweet. The best way to avoid eventualities like this is to blog when you’re on the move. On a bus? Blog. On the train? Blog. Doctor’s waiting room? Blog. Even the WordPress app will work great.

Speaking of blogging apps, Tumblr’s official iOS app means a constant flow of content both to reblog and comment on, and also to put through other social media feeds. Don’t keep great things to Tumblr – a JPEG, a GIF, a Video, or even a blog post can be interesting to those on your Twitter and Facebook feeds, even Pintrest, so don’t ignore the potential for content being dropped into your Tumblap!

You can also make use of high-quality apps for platforms that aren’t going to shove anything special your way short of convenient shortcuts, like Tweetbot. But the big bonuses come in when you delve into the “power-user” section of social media apps for iOS. Invaluable apps include those like HootSuite that do Facebook and Twitter, with post scheduling and even analysis of how popular your linked content is.

Using social media is easy, but mastering it is an ongoing process that, like anything else, is impossible to do completely, but you can put yourself significantly ahead of the competition by staying mobile and making the most of iOS apps that are going to help you do that. Stay mobile, stay smart, stay productive, and stay renowned.