Category Archives: CAREER

#WardrobeWednesday : Office Attire Pt. 1

April 19, 2017

There was an article that I had read a couple of months ago discussing decision fatigue, where researchers questioned whether or not the time we’ve spent deciding what to wear affects our cognitive functioning.  For instance, Steve Jobs is known for wearing the same pieces of clothing everyday, which plays a factor to why he was so successful.  Instead of wasting time deciding what to wear everyday, he had spent those minutes trying to come-up with the next big thing.

As I was about to make a drastic wardrobe decision, I finally reached the end of the article – it’s all total bullshit.  There are plenty of unsuccessful people who wear the same pieces of clothing everyday, and have gotten nowhere.  How I see it is that when you’re trying to figure-out what to wear for work every morning or the night before, you’re actively and creatively working your brain.  So, instead of wearing the same pant suit everyday, why not try mixing things up a bit?

Inspired by one of my favorite style influencers – previously mentioned here – I had put together something that is clean-cut for the office.  Just like Victoria Beckham, I am all about appearing effortlessly chic.  So, it’s no surprise that the posh star is my work attire inspiration.

Top: Tart Sarah Surplice Shirt (similar) | Bottom: Forever21 Contemporary Woven Trousers (similar) | Shoes: Saks Fifth Avenue Cathy Suede Pumps & Nine West Onosha Slip-On Sneakers (alternative)

I’ve topped-off the outfit with two different types of footwear – heels and sneakers.  I highly recommend the Cathy Suede Pumps from Saks Fifth Avenue because they are super comfortable!  I’ve worn them at the office to the dance floor, and not a single time, did I ever have any problems with them.  The sneakers I have featured in the picture, however, is the total opposite of comfortable.  Over the years, I’ve learned that my feet does not suit well with Nine West, due to the fact that I am always bleeding or suffering from redness after wearing several pair of their shoes.  My sister, on the other hand, has no problem with their products, so I’m assuming it’s because of my wide-feet.  Basically, if you got small and narrow feet, check out the selection at Nine West.

I hope this helps you in determining what you’d be wearing tomorrow!  If you have any work attire that you’re proud of, don’t hesitate to share it in the comments below!

P.S. Even though I may appear to be serious all-the-time at work, it doesn’t mean that I don’t have a goofy side 😉

Images shot by an incoming UCLA undergrad

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#ThankfulThursday : Because I Love What I Do

July 28, 2016

On the day of my graduation, which was also my birthday, I had made the decision to leave my first “big girl” job — a full-time role that I had secured months prior.  Having already started there two-months before my graduation, I couldn’t continue forcing myself to stay any longer for reasons that I will probably disclose in the near future.

Do I ever regret leaving it?  Sometimes, yes.  If I had stayed, I would of had a great salary, my own place, be given the opportunity to travel and I would have learned a lot of new skills.  Also, I would have saved myself the trouble of going through that horrendous job hunting experience.  But, at the same time, I don’t regret my decision because it has made me a better person today.  Not only did I become stronger as an individual, I had gained confidence in my abilities, became more open-minded and learned how to change my negative attitude into something positive.  Most importantly, I wouldn’t be given the opportunity that I have today.

If you’ve read my latest career post here, you must already know that I was dealing with job rejections one-after-the-other.  Ironically, two-weeks after that post, I was reached out by a recruiter for a position within the marketing realm.  Having been there for six-months now, I am, officially, a Production Coordinator at an advertising agency.  Even though I had always thought I’d turn into a high-powered, PR specialist in the fashion world, it turns out that advertising brings about a certain excitement that I had not experienced in the PR world before.  With my new role, I’m continuously being challenged everyday, and is always on my toes.

But, by far, one of the reasons why I’m entirely enjoying my new job are my colleagues.  The partners do not micro-manage, thus treating us as equals.  Together, we help each other to learn and grow, which I am so entirely grateful for their patience when answering all my questions.  I, finally, found a place where I can see myself building a career from, and can really treat this business as if it was my own.

For the first time in a long time, I can actually say that I am entirely happy with where I am at right now, especially since I love what I am doing.  I am beyond grateful for the journey that has led me to my new role, and I can actually see where I’d want to go professionally.  I can’t wait to see where this will take me, and to share with you this new chapter of mine!

Image via Etsy

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#TipTuesday : How To Deal With Rejections

January 19, 2016

I’ve consistently maintained a solid, positive attitude on here, especially about my struggles finding a full-time position in a competitive industry.  I definitely have a great support system, where my friends and family constantly encourage me to go after my dreams.  Plus, it doesn’t hurt that I am pretty much stubborn and won’t let anything go until I get what I want.

But, I wouldn’t be honest and real if I didn’t mention the grim side to all of this.  Right now, I am having a tough start into the new year.  I had spent the holidays, submitting job applications where I’ve received rejections left and right.  I even got a rejection email on New Years Eve!  Some carved out a moment of their time to chat with me; some liked me enough to move my application forward for an interview; some decided to take back those interviews; some decided to go forward with a different candidate; and some didn’t want to give me the time of day.

Rejections can leave you feeling discouraged and frustrated, especially the ones where you’re just inches away in closing the deal.  So, having had enough experience in this department check below to see how I respond to these rejections:
 

  1. Take A Moment To Pause.  One of the things you don’t want to do is to react poorly to a rejection.  Before you respond to the sender, you should definitely take a moment to wash away the anger that is probably flooding your body.  Participate in some breathing exercises, get a workout done, or even continue coloring in one of those adult coloring books.  For me, I would head over to one of my favorite spots in the world — the beach.  It doesn’t necessarily wash my disappointment away, but it sure helps me zone out from the rest of the world.  By clearing my mind, I’d definitely be in the right mindset to respond appropriately to the rejection.
  2. Let It All Out.  It’s also a good idea to find someone who you can vent to.  Typically, I will call my sister and give her a little rant of the situation.  At this moment, I don’t need any comforting, especially when all I’ve been hearing are, “it’s not the right job for you,” “something better will come along,” or “it’s their lost.”  The purpose of venting is to say whatever is on my mind, letting all that I have bottled up out.
  3. Respond Appropriately.  The worst thing you can do besides not responding back to the rejection email is to reply back in a very negative way, which is why I suggested steps 1 and 2.  By taking a moment to pause and letting it all out, you would already have cooled off and cleared your mind to respond appropriately to the rejection.  Politely thank the sender for their time and effort in interviewing you, and for giving you a chance to discuss your background and qualifications.  Always end things on a positive note — you will never know what other opportunities they may have for you in the future!
  4. Ask For Feedback.  When you are responding to the rejection email, make sure to ask for feedback.  It doesn’t hurt to ask why you didn’t get the job.  If anything, it shows the employer that you were serious about pursuing the position, and that you care about growing as a professional.  Also, there criticisms can provide insight to how you can better yourself for future opportunities!
  5. Accept It and Move On.  The most important part about accepting job rejections is to not take them so personally.  Employers are just looking for the best candidate to take on that role so you have no control over the decision-making process.  Once you get that rejection email, it’s very important that you accept it, and continue forward with your job hunt.

I hope my advice helps you in your job search, and if you need any guidance with the job hunt, feel free to check out my previous posts here.  Good luck to us all!

Image via Pinterest

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#WisdomWednesday : It’s Never Too Late To Intern

October 14, 2015

Besides lacking the inspiration to write, I was also very busy trying to figure out my life.  Ever since I got back from my trip, I had to work out what my next move was.  It’s already been a year since I’ve graduated, and I am still looking for that job in the fashion industry.

So, in order to keep myself within the fashion realm, I got myself an internship.  I’ve recently started interning at a local pr agency in The Arts District of downtown Los Angeles.  The team here is amazing!  They definitely get the work done, and know how to enjoy themselves while doing it.  What I love about the staff is that they actually want to teach you the necessary skills needed in a workplace.

Here, I am maintaining the showroom, assisting with gifting, compiling clips from print and online features, tracking celebrity and blogger placements, and creating pitches for the upcoming season.  Even though I had experience in these responsibilities, I still feel as if I am starting over.  Regardless, I am definitely fortunate to be here, and I desperately trying to show them what I got!

It’s definitely never too late to intern.  When I was interning at my first showroom, I was working alongside a 33-year-old intern, who was changing careers.  So, don’t ever deny yourself an opportunity due to a number!  Even though most of these internships are unpaid, it will never amount to the new skills and experiences you’d be obtaining.  Lucky me, the agency that I’m interning with believes in educating those passionate enough to learn, not who is willing to fetch them coffee.  Like the owner says, “We aren’t that kind of agency.”

If you are going through a similar situation right now, please feel free to share your interning experience(s) below!

 

Happy Hump Day!

– Lori

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#TipTuesday : Don’t Forget To Follow-Up!

October 13, 2015

One of the most important part of job hunting is to follow-up.  For some reason, people tend to ignore this portion of the process because they don’t believe it’ll make a difference.  I will admit, sometimes it doesn’t.  For instance, a friend of mine consistently followed-up on the status of her application for weeks, and never received a phone call or an in-person interview.  However, I also have a friend that did the exact same thing until the hiring manager finally gave in. The hiring manager decided to meet with him, and, eventually, offered him the job.

 

Typically, there are two occasions of when you should follow-up:

  1. After submitting your application for a position
  2. After meeting with the hiring manager in an interview

If you’ve submitted an application through the company’s website, it’ll be a little tricky to follow-up, especially when the hiring manager’s name and contact information is not listed.  You can call the company, and be directed to the recruiter in the HR Department, but I, personally, don’t recommend that tactic because it’s ineffective.  Instead, do some research.  Find out who the hiring manager is for the department you’ve applied for, and directly give them a call or an email.  With the resources we have today like LinkedIn, you should be able to find the person you’re looking for.  I even found people’s contact information on press releases!  Now, check below to see an example of a follow-up via email:

After an interview, it is highly recommended that you follow-up via phone or email. Try sending out an email once you get home from the interview, and do it no later than 5pm because that’s typically when people are out of the office.  If not, schedule an email for the next day at 10am (people are typically more responsive at that time) or give them a call. Check below to see an example of a follow-up via email:

One of the great things about following-up is that it shows hiring managers your persistence, and interest in the position.  So, don’t ever hesitate to send out an email every two days until you get a response. Like what my recruiter friend says, it’s better to pester them about it than sit around waiting.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave a message below!

 

Good luck!

– Lori

 

P.S. ***Please note that you should NEVER copy these examples word-for-word.  These are merely samples of what a follow-up email looks like.  So, please personalize your follow-ups!***

 

Image via The Muse & Business News Daily

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#TipTuesday : 10 Most Common Interview Questions

August 18, 2015

Your qualifications got you the interview so now employers want to see your personality and how you interact in an interpersonal environment.  In order to do a great job, you have to effectively communicate how your background applies to the position.  Base on how you compose yourself, it will then determine whether or not you’ll be a great fit for the company.

There are questions that tailor to the position, but, typically, employers all ask the same questions.  Here are the 10 most common interview questions I’ve encountered:
 

  1. Tell Me About Yourself.  For a recent graduate, start off with your academic background, and explain how the courses you’ve taken helped you acquire hands-on experiences outside of your studies.  Then, end your answer with how these experiences are applicable to the position you’re interviewing for.  Don’t take no more than 2-3 minutes on this because then you’d just end up rambling.
  2. What Are Your Strengths and Weaknesses?  Be sure to have at least 5 answers for each of this.  Interviewers will sometimes ask for 1, 3, or 5 answers from you.  Many people struggle with listing their weaknesses, but not many realize that this is a great opportunity for you to WOW the interviewer.  Beware!  Don’t list out answers like “I work too hard” because that’s not a weakness at all.  List out your weaknesses, but explain how you’ve overcome them.  Provide examples from your academic and professional experiences to help back-up your responses.
  3. Tell Me About A Challenge or Conflict You Faced At Work and Describe How You’ve Dealt With It?  In some interviews, hiring managers will provide you a scenario and ask how you would respond to it.  This question can either throw you off or win you the interview, but whatever it is, you can easily prepare for these types of questions.  For example, if you’re interviewing for a customer service role, a lot of it entails dealing with unhappy customers.  Interviewers will typically ask how you would deal with that unhappy customer.
  4. Why Are You Leaving Your Current Position?  Give an answer that does not belittle your current employer.  The last thing you want to do is speak badly of your current employer because the hiring manager will wonder if you’d do the same to them.  Typically, recruiters have advised to give answers that suggest seeking further opportunities and growth.   
  5. Why Do You Want To Work Here?  Do your research!  Find something specific and detailed about the company or organization that you’re interviewing for, and personalize it.  Again, don’t bad mouth your current employer — nobody wants to hear that.
  6. Where Do You See Yourself In Five Years?  Provide a specific answer to this question.  By giving an assured answer, the hiring manager will get a sense that you are mindful of your goals.  Thus, providing further insight to who you are.  Also, relate it to the current position and company that you’re interviewing for, but, of course, be honest about it.
  7. What Is Most Important To You In A New Position?  One of the most important values and factors in a work place that any job seeker has is the culture.  Another would be the support from the management and team.  Any answer within those lines are typically what has been said by most employees.
  8. What Are The Challenges You Think You’ll Face Here?  Find a specific challenge that you think you’re going to need more time to overcome than the others.  The most crucial thing is to always back it up with a “I know I will overcome it through hard work and persistence” kind of response.  Now, don’t give them a response where you’ll think the job itself will be a challenge…
  9. What Are Your Salary Requirements?  Again, do your research!  Check out Glassdoor for salary averages on a position within the company or organization.  Then, make your salary requirements off of that.
  10. Do You Have Any Questions For Me?  Never say no.  Hiring managers are not the only ones that should be asking questions, you should too!  I, personally, like to ask if they have any concerns about my qualifications because that way, if they do, I can address those concerns right then and there.  Most importantly, always ask what the next step of the interview process is.  I recommend being assertive about this because you want the employer to know that you really want this job!  In other words, always end it strong.

The most important advice that I can give you is to have confidence.  In order to do that, do your research, practice with a friend or family on these interview questions, and have your interview essentials ready in advance!  Confidence is key to your delivery, and it’s an energy that employers can’t get enough of.

Here’s a little clip from The Big Bang Theory to lighten up your spirits!

 

 

Good luck!

– Lori

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#TipTuesday : Interview Essentials Pt.1

August 11, 2015

Once you get the call for an in-person interview, it’s time to make some preparations!

There are several things that you can do to make sure you’ll pass the interview with flying colors.  Not only is it important to sale your skills and abilities, but it is also important that you look the part as well.  Check below to see what I’m talking about:

  • Hair & Makeup.  Keep it simple!  The most valuable lesson I’ve learned over the years is to keep your hair away from your face.  That means, you should have your hair tucked behind your ears, tie it up in a ponytail, half it up and down, or make a bun.  With makeup, stick to all things neutral. I recommend Urban Decay’s Naked2 Basics just because it’s easy to use. Coming in with metallic eyeshadow and hot pink lipstick will send out the wrong message…And most importantly bring on that smile!

  • Outfit.  It all depends on the company or organization that you’re interviewing for.  The most common color scheme for any interviewee is black and white.  However, if you’re interviewing for a creative company, you can always mix things up a bit by adding a little color!  My favorite store of all time, specifically for any classy and professional look is Zara — they’ve got the blazers, button-ups, trousers, pencil skirts, and more!  Less is more so there’s really no need to accessorize yourself from head to toe.  However, it doesn’t hurt to invest in a leather-band watch and a handbag without any of the fancy frills. An appropriate watch would be the Daniel Wellington’s Classic Sheffield 36mm. By choosing the right outfit it can help you feel cool, calm, and collected!

  • Portfolio.  Employers will definitely ask for a copy of your resume, but where on earth would you put them in?  Bring a portfolio/padfolio.  It will hold your resumes, personal business cards, and a notepad just in case you need to joint down notes.  You can easily find these in your local Wal-Mart and Target locations.  If you’re looking to find a spot for business cards, check out MOO Business Cards — it’s easy to use and fast with deliveries!

As you can see, preparing for an interview is not just about knowing what to say, but also looking presentable as well. What you choose to wear says a lot about you so choose wisely!

Tune in next week for a post about the possible questions asked in an interview!

 

If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below and I will answer it as soon as I can!

 

Good Luck!

– Lori

 

P.S. Don’t get too excited. I’m wearing a tube top in the image above.

 

Image Source: Polyvore

 

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#MotivationMonday : Never Give Up!

August 10, 2015

If you checked out my bio, you’ll know that I am currently looking for employment in fashion.
 

These past two weeks was just a clash of negative emotions.  After going through rejections after rejections, I’ve finally reached a point of total break down.

I screamed, I cried, and I told myself it’s time to give up.

But, then I asked myself this…

Why start something if you’re going to end up quitting?  Success is never gained without a little struggle.  Goals are achieved with persistence and patience, so stick to the plan until you get what you want and never settle for anything less.  When you hit a low-point in your life, remind yourself why you’re doing this.

Then ask yourself — if you were to give up now, would you regret it?

 

Remember…work hard, stay positive, and never give up.

 

– Lori

Image : Via Pinterest

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#TipTuesday : Updating Your Resume

August 4, 2015

If you’ve checked out my LinkedIn page, you’ll notice that I am nowhere near where I want to be.  I am definitely grateful for the job that I have now, but it doesn’t mean that I won’t continue my pursuit into the chaotic world of fashion pr!

If you’ve just graduated or is in the same boat as I am, the first thing first is to revamp your resume.

During college, I’ve taken a course in business communication, where my resume was used as a positive example for the whole class.  I’ve, also, attended several seminars on campus, learning the dos’ and don’ts of updating a resume.  However, most of the time, I just forward them to my recruiter friend who reviews them.

The most common, yet, crucial advice that anyone will tell you is that your resume should always correspond to the position and company you’re applying for.  After many trial runs, here is what I discovered:

 

  • Create A Spreadsheet.  To keep yourself organized, create a spreadsheet of the positions and companies that you’ve applied and/or contacted.  Also, you should compile a list of companies and organizations that you are interested in working for.
  • Going Fancy Huh?  If you’re applying for a creative role like web design, it doesn’t hurt to make your resume a little fancy.  For example, you can probably get away with adding a headshot, but if you’re applying for a laboratory technician position, then I doubt a headshot is necessary.
  • Objectives Are Out!  Your application for a position is already self-explanatory.  However, adding a summary to your resume is highly recommended, especially for applicants who lack work experience, a distinct career path, and/or is a recent graduate.
  • Match Keywords.  In a seminar hosted at my alumni, recruiters from Volcom, Asics, and Oakley have vouched that they take no more than 10 seconds on a resume.  Once they receive an applicant’s resume, recruiters would highlight 10 or more keywords before relaying it off to their hiring managers.
  • Add Numbers.  Let’s say you’ve worked as a Department Manager at Nordstrom, and your department had a sales increase of 10% the same year you’ve managed it.  It would be a good idea to include that information on your resume!
  • A Two-Paged Resume?  Some recruiters actually don’t mind receiving a two-paged resume, but, of course, it would have to make sense.  For instance, it wouldn’t make sense for an undergrad or post-graduate to have a two-paged resume when their careers haven’t even started yet.  Now, if you’ve been in the workforce for 40+ years, and you’ve taken on positions like the Director of Communications, then you’re allowed to have a two-paged resume.
  • Why Not Include Interests and Hobbies?  It all depends on the role and company you’re applying for.  In a seminar, a recruiter from Volcom actually moved a candidate’s application forward because she listed “surfing” as one of her interests.  It not only was applicable to the company’s culture, it gave the recruiter an idea of who she is.
  • Take Off “References Available Upon Request.”  It’s a waste of space, and, typically, recruiters and hiring managers will not hesitate to ask you for references anyways.
  • Include A Portfolio.  This is especially important to those applying for creative roles.  It’s a great way to showcase your work, and it will definitely impress employers!
  • Don’t Even Bother.  Keep in mind, applying for positions that have been listed for more than a month usually means that hundreds of resumes have been submitted before you, and the chance that your resume will be looked at is very unlikely.  Unless it’s a company run by 1-10 employees then that’s a different story…

Remember, even if you’ve got a perfect resume, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll get picked up by a recruiter — a piece of paper can only do so much.  As said by a recruiter, an applicant can never take a rejection personally.  It doesn’t mean that there is something wrong with you, you’re just not what the company is looking for at the moment.  So, keep applying and don’t let this job hunt bring you down!

 

Anyways, I hope this was helpful, and if you have any questions or objections, leave a comment below, and I will get back to you as soon as I can!

 

Good Luck!
– Lori

 

Image: ‘Ashley Lee’ Resume Sample/Template Via Resume Shoppe

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