Sunday, December 29, 2013

Self-employment & Business Ownership - January 8, 6:30-8pm

Suzanne Gray (Business Coach at "The Entrepreneur's Source") will walk us through the joys and realities of self-employment. What should potential entrepreneurs consider before they start their own business? Suzanne Gray will lead us through an exploration of self employment as a viable career path. 

Please click on the link below to sign-up for this free workshop.

WIN Workshop Sign-up

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Revving Up Your Job Search for 2014 - Susan P Joyce

Susan P. Joyce (President of NETability Inc., Publisher/Editor of &, presented a very useful, informative workshop on 'How To Rev Up Your Job Search For Success In The New Year.'

She quoted Dick Bolles' statement - "Google is the new resume." The job search truth of the 21st century is - "What happens in Vegas, stays in Google, Bing etc." Employers are overwhelmed with resumes for most postings. Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) are used for resume storage, screening and retrieval. And, candidate qualifications are verified via the internet - on social media (primarily LinkedIn). The main challenge for the job seeker is how to stand out from the crowd. In order to do that, one has to be appropriately and positively visible:
• Find-able in the ATS system.
• Find-able in Google and Bing.
• Attract the right employers and jobs to you with your personal SEO (search engine optimization).
• Create/protect a professional persona (social proof of who you are and what you did)

The 3 key elements for your online reputation:
1. Your 'screen name'- Job search and career name that uniquely identifies you.
2. Personal Social Proof - Online results confirm resume content.
3. Personal SEO - Positive content is found on the right searches for you.

In job search today, recruiters/employers assume that your internet visibility - your public profiles, activities, and connections - reflect who you truly are.

Customizing your resume, being fully prepared for an interview and having a complete LinkedIn profile are important factors for job seekers. Susan stressed that social proof is not optional. For creating social proof, LinkedIn is the most valuable resource. Other useful resources that she mentioned are: for excellent resume advice, and and for analyzing the keywords used for your target jobs and LinkedIn profile. 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

How To Rev Up Your Resume For The New Year - December 11, 6:30-8pm

The presenter, Susan P. Joyce is a two-time layoff “graduate” who founded her own company in 1995 after her last layoff (Digital Equipment Corporation).  Currently, she is a publisher of two of the 100 websites included in the 2013-2014 Forbes 100 Best Websites for Your Career, and has been studying, writing, teaching, and speaking about the topic of smart online job search since 1995.  She is also a veteran (United States Marine Corps), and, in her spare time, a Visiting Scholar at the MIT Sloan School of Management. 
The combination of easy online resume submission, massive social media usage, and the dominance of search engines have created a new and different dynamic in the job market today.  What worked in 1995, 2005, or even 2010 won’t be successful today unless you prepare to leverage these technologies.  In this session, we’ll talk about how the recruiting process works now, and what you need to do to stand out in the very big crowd of competitors you have.
Please click on the link below to sign-up for this free workshop.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Delivering An Effective Value Statement - Stuart Paap

Stuart Paap (professional public speaker) conducted a lively, interactive WIN workshop that focused on delivering an effective value statement. "This statement works as a tool or script to open up the most amount of relationships," he said. In essence, a value statement is 'sharing who you are, what you do and why you do what you do to get into a meaningful conversation.' We have to become more effective communicators. We must leverage our network.
Rule 1: You've got to care. You should like what you are doing.
Rule 2: You should give yourself a baby goal - for example: have a real connection with one person.
Rule 3: You've got to do consistent networking (not necessarily networking events...even meet-ups will help).
Rule 4: Start your own interest group (anything you are passionate about).

The steps to creating an effective value statement are:
1. Who are you?
2. State your profession or focus. (not too vague and not too much)
3. Transition phrase or disruptive phrase. For example:"You know what I love?" Communicate some passion about what you do or care the most about.
4. "What I really do is help ......"
5. Who do you help? (narrow your focus...mention the target group)
6. What's the one goal you help them do?
7. Express how you feel about that or why do you care about what you do. Don't forget the emotion. For example: "I LOVE IT"....or..."Being a lawyer is in my DNA"
Put steps 1 to 7 together. Write it down to create your script/value statement. You can use this script whenever you meet someone.

Real genuine networking is forming connections. And, finally, remember that how you say it is more important than what you say.  

Friday, October 25, 2013

Delivering An Effective Value Statement - Stuart Paap - Wed., November 13, 6:30-8pm

For over a decade, Stuart Paap (Professional Public Speaker) has been teaching the principles of effective communication to professionals and entrepreneurs.  He has given workshops at the Enterprise Center, Bentley University, the New England School of Art and Design, and for many privately held businesses and non-profits, including marketing, law and technology firms. He is passionate about helping smart people with big ideas make a powerful impact. In this workshop, the focus will be on:
·        How to write and deliver an effective value statement
·        How to communicate better
·        How to connect with each other

Please register by clicking on the link below :

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Doug Peck : Encore Careers - Finding Meaningful Work After 50

Doug Peck (President, KindnessWorks,LLC) presented on the topic “Encore Careers after 50.”  
Older workers face the following challenges :
·        age discrimination
·        skills could be out of date
·        multi-generational workforce
·        changing job market
Doug highlighted the importance of the mature mind. He said that older adults have the same capacity to learn, grow and get pleasure from new accomplishments. The fastest growing segment of graduate students is the over-50 age group. "You have to reinvent yourself," he advised the group. The mantra for this age is 'networking...networking...networking.' LinkedIn is the best resource. "It is about finding more joy in your journey than about the type of work you are going to do. There might be fear but it is time to be optimistic," Doug encouraged. "You need a streak of optimism if you want to do something."
It takes work to figure out what you want to do. You need to know what your core competencies are.
Some of the advantages of mature workers include dedication, punctuality, honesty, being detail-oriented, focused and attentive. You should enjoy the journey. You should be positive, enthusiastic, passionate and compassionate to yourself.
He shared some inspirational quotes -
"It is never too late to become what you might have been.” - George Eliot
"20 years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did." - Mark Twain
Doug also shared the following resources for seniors.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Upcoming WIN meetings

Hello everyone!

We are happy to announce a new networking opportunity. If you are looking to switch careers and want to network and interact informally with others, join us on Monday, October 21st at 10:30 am. We can get together, exchange notes, ideas and job search tips, share success stories, and encourage and advice each other. We can help each other in boosting our self-confidence. There will be a facilitator at these meetings.

Just drop in on Monday...

See you then...

- WIN (Work Initiative Network)

P.S. Our next regular meeting will be on Wednesday,  October 23, 6:30 - 8 pm. Doug Peck, a certified Senior Advisor with 25+ years experience as a Corporate HR Executive, will conduct a workshop on Finding Meaningful Work after 50. Doug will help people who wish to switch careers. Doug is the owner of Seniors Helping Seniors. Please register for this workshop by clicking on the link below:

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Working With Contract Agencies - Cheryl Landes

At the WIN workshop, Cheryl Landes, Founder and Owner of Tabby Cat Communications, covered all aspects of working with contract agencies. In her presentation, Cheryl, a full-time technical writer, provided tips on how to work with agencies that place us on temporary assignments. She also described the current climate at the agencies and how job seekers can navigate this intricate maze so their resumes will be noticed and presented to hiring clients.
The methods for contracting agencies include: job boards, agencies’ websites, phone, email, face-to-face meetings (recruiter appointments, networking events, job fairs) and professional networking sites like LinkedIn. She advised that when you apply for assignments posted on web sites and job boards, you should not apply through email links provided. Instead, you should call the agency and ask for the recruiter handling the opening. When you talk to the recruiter, you should ask specific questions, express interest and email your resume directly to him/her so that it is presented to the hiring client.
In conclusion, contracting work through agencies will continue to grow. Cheryl explained that understanding the agencies’ and clients’ needs and keeping abreast of contracting trends are crucial to your success. Being flexible and continuously marketing yourself to agencies is also important.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Working With Contract Agencies

Next WIN workshop on Oct 9, 6:30 PM 

Cheryl Landes, Founder and Owner of Tabby Cat Communications in Seattle, is also a full-time contract technical writer. She will provide tips on how to work with agencies that place us on temporary assignments. She also describes the current climate at the agencies and how job seekers can navigate this intricate maze so their resumes will be noticed and presented to the hiring clients. 

This program would be of interest to anyone looking for contractual assignments and will help with the application process. To register for the workshop, please click here

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Exploring Entreprenership : Start Your Own Business - Ginny Wholley

Ginny Wholley(Business Consultant and Trainer at Bizminga), from the Center for Women and Enterprise(CWE), walked WIN participants through the process of starting a business. Her recommended start-up steps included the following:

1. Evaluate and develop your business idea

2. Choose a legal structure

3. Choose a name and branding strategy

4. Determine financing needs

5. Obtain an Employer Identification Number

6. Find a location (if possible)

7. File for licenses and permits

8. Get insurance

9. Set up tax reporting and accounting

10. Build teams

One has to make an honest appraisal of one’s skills, determine if the business idea is viable and make a business plan. 

Throughout the presentation, valuable tips and excellent resources were shared. Our thanks to Ginny Wholley. 

For further information about the CWE, visit their website:

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Exploring Entrepreneurship - Workshop on Sept 25, 6:30-8 PM

Interested in starting your own business? Would you like to get some tips from a pro? Ivete Olmeda of the Center for Women and Enterprise, Worcester, will help you explore the possibilities of starting your own business. You can learn about the risks and rewards of starting up your own business; discuss your specific business ideas and needs with a program manager; hear success stories of women who have worked with CWE and are now thriving in the business world. 

Please register for the workshop by clicking here.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Alex Bering mesmerizes WIN members

Alex Bering, author, coach, and speaker from the Carnegie Training Institute, kept the WIN participants engaged for an hour and a half with stimulating exercises and his insightful commentary. He encouraged everyone to get out of their comfort zone and talk to strangers; stand up in front of an audience and deliver an "elevator speech"; and practice a firm handshake. He quoted Tony Alessandra's Platinum rule, "Treat others they want to be treated." An effective communicator will be able to assess how the person s/he interacts with would like to be treated and treat them accordingly. 

A very inspiring and enjoyable presentation!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Alex (The Y Guy) Bering (Dale Carnegie Training Co.) presents...

Alex Bering is an author, speaker and coach for the Dale Carnegie Training Company. He provides Consulting, Training and Coaching in 6 key areas: Leadership Development, Sales Effectiveness, Presentation Effectiveness, Team Member Engagement, and Eliminating stress/fear/anxiety by mastering your thoughts and emotions. On Wed, September 11, he will present at the Shrewsbury Library. In this workshop, you'll gain dexterity and grace in dealing with new or trying situations; recognize how you come across to others; become conscious of body language; give and receive criticism constructively; and present yourself as powerful - not intimidating. 

To sign up for this workshop, please click here, Workshop REgistration

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Online Identity Optimization - Greg Page

Greg Page, CEO of Merrimack Analysis Group, shared a wealth of information at the WIN workshop on Online Identity Optimization. He began with a quote from Mark Twain – “The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.”
You do not need any special technical expertise to “eBrand” yourself; existing platforms (like LinkedIn, Twitter,, Scribd, Slideshare, Google Plus, youtube etc.) provide everything you will need.
Greg advised that the following steps are worth taking: 1. Build your foundation, 2. Cleanup negative content, and 3. Create and publicize positive content.
Social networks will ultimately take over the recruiting role. Do not restrict your job search to cyberspace. Greg also stressed that we should be wary of our digital footprint.
MOOCs (Massive, Open, Online Courses) are very useful tools. Udacity, Coursera and EdX are all free and offer courses and certificates in “hot” areas.
Greg exhorted participants to listen to the “Hum of the Job Market.”
Check out the link below for Greg’s website :

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Networking Meetings on Mondays AND Wednesdays

It's hard to believe that it's been a year since we launched WIN! About 115 people have attended our biweekly meetings and participated in our workshops. Among the speakers who've presented have been authors, hiring managers, college career counselors and a number of professional career coaches. A wide range of topics have been covered, such as Effective Networking Strategies, Leveraging LinkedIn, Building a Job-Search Toolbox and Improv for the Job search. We hope that participants have taken away something from attending these workshops - made new friends, got some practical tips and learned about the resources at the library!

As the response to the biweekly meetings has been so good, we are offering another meeting time come September. Informal meetings will be held on the first and third Monday of the month from 10:30-11:30 AM. There will be a facilitator at these meetings and this will be a networking opportunity for folks between jobs or those in career transitions. So come and join us for our first Monday meeting on September 16th at 10:30 AM! 

The Wednesday meetings continue with a presentation by Greg Page on August 28th. The topic is "Online Identity Optimization for Job Seekers.Greg Page is the CEO and co-founder of Merrimack Analysis Group. His presentation will include the latest about the ways HR Officers are searching for people online, how job candidates can best present themselves, etc. along with information about how to stay safe from identity theft scams that target job seekers. 
To register for this workshop, please click on this link: Workshop Registration

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Career Coaching Books

It's almost the end of summer but has a list of summer reading titles focusing on career coaching. 
Check it out.

Personal Branding, Online Job Hunting & Power Networking - Rachelle Lappinen

Rachelle Lappinen (Life Compass Coach/Workshop Facilitator & Developer) provided valuable advice and information on various resources for job seekers. She emphasized that networking is very important. Some of the highlights of her presentation are listed below.
·        Personal branding through social media is crucial
·        Online job searching is not the most effective way to find jobs, but can be effective to research industries, job growth and target companies
·        In person networking is key to any job search. It should make up 75% of your job search time
References and resources recommended by Rachelle include the following:
Ø Job-Hunting Online by Mark Emery Bolles & Richard Nelson Bolles
Ø The Twitter Job Search Guide by Susan Britton Whitcomb, Chandlee Bryan & Deb Dib
Ø Job Searching with Social Media for Dummies by Joshua Waldman
Ø Getting from College to Career by Lindsey Pollack
Ø What Color is your Parachute? by Richard N. Bolles
Ø ME 2.0 : 4 Steps to Building your Future by Dan Schawbel

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Personal Branding, Online Job Hunting and Power Networking

Rachelle Lappinnen, who runs the Leominster Job Seekers Group, will lead the WIN workshop on Wed, August 14 from 6:30-8 PM. Rachelle worked as a Career Adviser at Becker College. She also volunteers with Worcester Dress for Success. Rachelle motivates job seekers to discover their academic and career interests and to help them achieve their goals through education, training and career advice. To register for this workshop, please follow this link: Workshop Registration

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Selecting a College or Training Program

Dawn Kiritsis, College and Career Navigator at Quinsigamond Community College, Worcester, gave a comprehensive and informative presentation on the resources and programs at the QCC. She went over the admissions process, the prerequisites, the tuition, the financial aid available and convinced the audience that QCC is one attractive college for students who wish to save money and attend a college in Central MA that offers a wide array of courses. For the most up-to-date course listing, visit

Ms. Kiritsis also spoke about the resources available at the Workforce Central Career Center in Worcester, MA. There are a number of computer courses, and free workshops on resume writing, interview taking and other job skills related topics. For more information, visit the website,

Dawn also had useful handouts that the participants really appreciated having. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Selecting a College or Training Program

To stay relevant in today's job market, it's important to stay up-to-date with modern technology and undergo training to upgrade one's skills. The workshop on Wed, July 24th, 6:30-8 PM will help us learn about opportunities and resources in a nearby college. Dawn Kiritsis, Career Navigator at Quinsigamond Community College, Worcester, will guide us through the process of selecting a college or choosing a program at QCC, that would be valuable for adults and young adults. 
To register for the workshop, please click on this link: Workshop Registration

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Improv for the Job Search - Michael Taylor

Mike Taylor led a highly interactive, fun-filled improv workshop for WIN participants. He guided them through exercises that relieve stress and calm interview jitters.  He encouraged participants by suggesting some useful tips to think on the spot and prepare for interviews. For the resume, he advised that one could use the following 7 cues to create a narrative: 

Once upon a time …
And every day …
Until one day…
And because of this …
And because of this …
 Until finally …
And ever since that day …

Mike incorporated several enjoyable games into the workshop.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

"Improv for the Job Search" on July 10, 6:30-8 PM

Mike Taylor's "Improv for the Job Search" promises to be a fun and highly interactive meeting that you wouldn't want to miss! Improvisation Theater, improv for short, can be a stressful activity requiring you to think "on-your-feet" and impress an audience. Job hunting meetings can be a stressful activity requiring you to think "on-your-feet" and impress an audience. This presentation is a participatory activity that uses a few improv exercises to show skills that can be applied to business meetings, in particular interviews. Michael Taylor has studied improv at Boston Improv and with a number of improv master instructors across the US. He is the co-founder of Mill City Improv. He has been a hiring manager, job candidate, and speaker on a number of technical and business topics. 

To register for the workshop, please click on this link:

See you on the 10th!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Building A Job-Search Toolbox - Randall Warniers

Randall Warniers led an informative workshop titled ‘Building a Job Search Toolbox.’ During the presentation, he provided useful insights and tips for job seekers. “The better the tools you have to work with, and the more you know how to use those tools, the more effective you’ll be at getting the job done,” he said. His presentation covered 5 areas of improvement:
(1)  The new resume: Your resume will get 10-30 seconds to make an impression. The top third of the page is your resume impact zone, so make it forceful and compelling. Your resume should be accurate, brief and clear.
(2)  Networking skills: An effective networker facilitates connections and provides value in any exchange. The 6 fundamental components of effective networking skills are - excellent business cards, a professional email address, an effective name tag for networking events, good grooming and high-quality clothing, a memorable first impression and an engaging social manner.
(3)  Social media is emerging as the way people communicate and do business. The fundamental components of your online presence in social media are – LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, a website/blog, videos on YouTube, appealing and appropriate photographs, and positive participation in discussion groups.  
(4)  Technological literacy: The pace of technological change is very rapid. To keep up with it, Warniers advised that we stay in school, attend seminars and conferences, do webinars, take classes, read books, be fluent in the language of our field, listen closely to our passions and follow our bliss.   
(5)  Personal entrepreneurship: You are the CEO of Me, Inc. (read Tom Peter’s article ‘The Brand Called You’). You are an effective solution to somebody’s ongoing problem. The better you understand the solutions you offer and the problems that need to be solved, and the better you communicate the solutions you offer, the more effective you’ll be at being the best solution.
Do something every day to enhance your toolbox. With the right skills and tools in your toolbox, you will overcome the obstacles and create your dream job.

Friday, June 21, 2013

WIN Workshop on Wed., June 26, 6.30-8pm

Building a Job-Search Toolbox
Randall Warniers (Principal at RW Communications & Design)
·       Competing in a wired world and a rapidly changing marketplace
·       Meeting demands of today’s new world of work
·       Acquiring necessary skills to compete effectively and be employable

Please click on the link below to register:

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Your Job Search : Dream BIG, Focus Small - Maureen Weisner

At the WIN workshop, Maureen Weisner (Professional Trainer and Coach) emphasized that we should identify our dream, plan and work towards it.  She encouraged participants to write down 3 things that they treasured and were grateful for. She advised that one should put this note where one can see it often. She explained how making a change can be intimidating for anyone. We should disengage ourselves, get off the hamster wheel and take steps towards making the change.  For example, buying a book about Marathon Training does not mean you ran the marathon but it is a step towards it. Sometimes, what holds us back is the thought that everybody can do what we can do. We don’t value ourselves. We should do more of what we are good at so that we can notch up that skill to a higher level. It is great to have a dream and it is important to articulate it. She concluded by emphasizing that we should follow our dream.   

Thursday, June 6, 2013

WIN Workshop on Wed., June 12, 6.30-8pm

Your Job Search – Dream BIG, Focus Small
Maureen Weisner (Professional Trainer and Coach)

  • Rejuvenate your job search
  • Start a job search after a break
  • Impact of change on your job search

Thursday, May 23, 2013

What If It's Time For A Change? - Jackie Woodside

“What if it’s time for a change?”asked Jackie Woodside (Author, Speaker and Professional Coach) at the WIN workshop last night. During the presentation, Jackie shared insights from her book and helped participants understand the dynamics of the human change process. She said that the main problem was that most people do not understand how to create meaningful, successful, long-lasting change! For a solution, one has to learn the critical elements to mastering change. The following are the 4 keys to managing change and creating a life of meaning, success, productivity and ease.
1.     Develop a PLAN to manage the change: Most people spend very little time planning what they want to accomplish in life, and therefore accomplish very little of what they want.
2.     Establish super SUPPORT: We are relational beings by nature. Therefore, we all can reach higher and be more in the face of meaningful supportive relationships with like-minded people.
3.     Align your ACTIONS with your VALUES: Become incredibly clear that the change you seek is aligned with what you value and be sure that those elements are present in your schedule, so that you know they will be present in your life.
4.     Establish ACCOUNTABILITY: Very little gets accomplished in life without some form of accountability. Create a structure for the change you want to make where you need to be accountable for the actions you commit to taking.
Every change begins with a plan, so create a plan for living the life you love!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Finding a Job You Really Want - Clare Harlow

Clare Harlow (Career & Life Coach and Consultant) presented an informative workshop on finding a job you really want. She began with a problems checklist and encouraged participants to mention problems faced during a job search.  She shared a handout about the Comprehensive Emotional Scale and explained which part of the scale one should be on to achieve success. She discussed the steps to finding work that fits one's life. One has to ponder on answers to questions like Who are you? What’s important to you? What do you like to do? Where do you want to work? …etc. Based on the responses, one should create an action plan. Brainstorming your ideal job questions is important. For example: What advice would you give yourself at this time in your life? Imagine you were interviewing ‘you’ and answer questions like - What 3 major choices brought you to this point in your life? Looking back, what 3 things do you wish you had tried? Clare concluded the workshop with 18 ways to find work and explained that doing a self-inventory had an 86% success rate in finding a job. She said, “What you believe will happen is a factor in your outcome.”   

Clare Harlow's contact details:

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

WIN Workshop on May 8, 6.30-8pm

Finding a Job You Really Want
Clare Harlow (Career & Life Coach and Consultant)

·       Find a job that is a good fit
·       Determine your interests and skills and transfer them into opportunities
·       Reassess your priorities, rediscover your interests, and reinvent yourself.
·        Discover the key steps to take charge of your work and your life!
Click on the link below: