The Simplest Way to Get Ahead in Your Career: Be Civil.

We recently ran a poll asking our audience if they are showing up as the person they want to be.  

Whether you realize it or not, you're showing who you are every day through your actions.  

This statistic impacts workplace environments.   How you show up and treat people means everything in your journey to success. Your workplace character also influences the success of others. Incivility in the workplace has a chain reaction effect proven to lose companies' money, talent, and innovative ideas.  Nice Guys Don’t Finish Last.   Nice guys finish first, it’s a principle backed by research. According to civility researcher Christine Porath, treating people with respect creates more productive work environments and boosts companies’ bottom lines. Even small gestures of politeness performed throughout the day lead to lasting positive change. Alternatively, negative workplace interactions have a major effect in every aspect of a business.     How much of an impact can incivility really make? Christine Porath, the tenured professor at Georgetown University's McDonough School of Business and the author of Mastering Civility, launched a study among business school alumni asking them to write a few sentences about one experience where they were treated: rudely, disrespectfully or insensitively in their workplace and to answer questions about how they reacted.  The results showed that these interactions made each employee much less motivated within their jobs.  

So much so that:  

How much of an impact can incivility really make? 

After Christine Porath published these results, she immediately received calls from numerous organizations. Cisco read about the study, took just a few numbers and estimated, conservatively, that incivility indeed was costing them over 12 million dollars a year.   This study went on to prove that incivility doesn’t only affect the person experiencing it – it affects anyone witnessing it. 

Those witnessing incivility had worse performance and fewer ideas.  

The Simplest Way to Get Ahead in Your Career: Be Civil.

Is Workplace Civility that Significant?  

Following Christine Porath’s study, researchers in Israel discovered medical teams exposed to workplace rudeness perform worse not only in all their diagnostics but in all the procedures they did. This was mainly because the teams exposed to rudeness didn't share information as readily, and they stopped seeking help from their teammates. This occurs not only in medicine but in all industries.  Incivility affects our:  
  • Our emotions 
  • Motivation 
  • Performance 
  • How we treat others Our Attention 
  • Our brainpower 
  • Our Focus  
  • Our Decision-making  
This can be a big deal, especially when it comes to life-and-death situations. Christine Porath shares in her Ted Talk:   “Steve, a physician, told me about a doctor that he worked with who was never very respectful, especially to junior staff and nurses. But Steve told me about this one particular interaction where this doctor shouted at a medical team. Right after the interaction, the team gave the wrong dosage of medication to their patient. Steve said the information was right there on the chart, but somehow everyone on the team missed it. He said they lacked the attention or awareness to take it into account. Simple mistake, right? Well, that patient died.” — Christine Porath 

Small Things Make a Big Difference. 

Incivility chips away at people and their performance. It robs people of their potential, even if they're just working around it. Civility lifts people. People give more and function at their best when in a civil environment. Research proves, when we have more civil environments, everyone is more productive, creative, helpful, happy and healthy.  Simply thanking people, sharing credit, listening attentively, humbly asking questions, acknowledging others and smiling has an impact and promotes a better work environment for everyone.  

In Conclusion, How You Show Up Matters. 

The way you show up matters not only to your success but to others' success as well. Try not to underestimate the effect of a simple action. Newton said it best: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Become the person who starts the positive ripple within someone’s day. For you never know what one single action can lead to.     References  
  1. Research on friends at work: Olivet Nazarene University Dec. 8, 2022 
  1. Christine Porath: Why being respectful to your coworkers is good for business | TED Talk  

2023 – The Age of Social Hiring

As more and more candidates turn to social media for job research, companies are taking advantage of these platforms as part of their hiring strategies. Social recruiting and recruitment marketing strategies are becoming an increasingly important part when it comes to talent acquisition since research indicated that more than 75% of job seekers research about a company’s reputation and employer brand before applying.  It has become a necessity to use social media in talent acquisition. The average internet user (job seeker) has over five social media accounts. As of 2022, LinkedIn has at least 849.6 million members - roughly 10.7% of all the people on Earth have a LinkedIn account today. Following suit, Facebook has over 2 billion active users and Twitter has over 300 million, and those numbers only continue to grow.  Social media now doubles as business media where people may go to interact with friends, express their passions, shop trends and, yes, find their next job. 

The graph below outlines the top information Job seekers look for when applying for a job or researching your company. 


Use Social Platforms to make Better Hires | Tailor your job descriptions and Company Profile 


Key Takeaways 

  • More companies will use social media to assess candidates. 
  • Brands will have to improve their reputation to have a chance at hiring top talents. 
  • Companies will be leveraging technologies like CRM and social media platforms to reach out to candidates. 

Benefits of Social Media Recruiting  

  • Increases job visibility 
  • Higher quality candidates 
  • Better employer brand awareness 
  • Reduce cost of hire 
  • Opens the door to engagement 
  • Shortens hiring time 

Tips for advertising a job on social media 

  • Work with your marketing team to create advertisements that entice potential candidates. Discuss with your marketing/branding team the perks and benefits of roles to excite candidates about the opportunity.  
  • Be concise. People scroll through social media quickly and spend very little time looking at each individual post, so your advertisement needs to get the point across quickly. 
  • Include all the relevant information. Similarly, social media users tend to be reluctant to follow a link to more information, so make sure the most important details are covered in the post itself. Make the content easy to digest and call to actions simple enough for the viewer to immediately respond.  
  • Advertise your company, not just a job. Advertising on social media is a chance to display your company culture, so try to reflect that in your posts. 
  • Target the right audience. Make sure you post your advertisement where candidates in your industry will see it, and tailor it to the platform you’re using.  
  1. Linkedin statistics and trends (2022) Retrieved from: Data Reportal 
  1. Berger, G. (2020). The Jobs of Tomorrow: LinkedIn’s 2020 Emerging Jobs Report. Retrieved from LinkedIn 
  1. Occupop (June 10, 2021) The Advantages of Using Social Media to Recruit 

How to Be Prepared & Indispensable with a Looming Recession 

With much debate over the U.S. economy potentially entering a recession and labor shortages continuing, it is an excellent time to ensure your value and take steps to prepare for a pending recession.  How do you prepare for a future recession and possible layoffs? 

Check Yourself then Promote Yourself 

In times of uncertainty, see what you can be certain about. Are you certain you are putting your best foot forward in your current position? Are you demonstrating your best effort, most of the time? Could your skill set use a review? Kindly do a self-assessment to see where you can make improvements.  

If you are already doing a stellar job and giving your work 110%, make sure this contribution is visible to your leadership team. Your boss is likely busy, ensure they see the value of your presence and contributions. Ask for a time slot on your manager's calendar and talk about transferable skills you may already have or future skills you want to learn. Reminding your manager of the contributions you offer and the future ones you plan to contribute will bode well for you.  


Krissy Whitaker, Accounting & Finance Recruiting Expert states: “With so many uncertainties of the economic climate pending in 2023, we know that the war for talent will continue. The reality of hiring top talent is challenged by the lack of candidates available amidst the vast number of openings. How can you stay relevant and be visible with so many companies eager to hire critical staff? Many companies are seeing a lack of qualified & available candidates, so take the time to stand out from the crowd! It’s important for you to consistently show your value and announce accomplishments to be highly visible for future employers to know you. As recruiters, our consistent presence in the market will prove to be an asset for you when you are open to making a career move!”


You Should Always Be Proactive Regardless Of The Economy 

While you assess yourself, continue to re-evaluate what an employer of choice means to you. Ensure that you are keeping your resume and skills up to date and explore your professional network on LinkedIn. If you end up needing to make a transition, you will position yourself for success in the future. 

LinkedIn offers skills assessments, recommendation requests, certification courses, and more – if you are looking to be an indispensable asset to potential employers, LinkedIn is an ideal place to start.     

Unfortunately, reductions in force (RIFS) are inevitable, these decisions are often out of your direct manager’s hands. Either way, it is better to be prepared.   

Doing The Above Makes You More Marketable  

While your value has always existed, it is good practice to build on it and be prepared for the unexpected. Do the things now that can make for a smoother transition if the time to move on comes around.

While making yourself stand out, there is no need to overstep and try too hard to gain your manager’s attention. Simply remember to show your value and discuss it with your supervisor. Asking for feedback is a flawless way to ensure your work is seen while gaining an honest evaluation.  

Reaching out to a recruiter is a great way to start networking. This future relationship can help you be prepared by working with a well-connected professional when the economic future is uncertain. 

A 30-60-90-Day Plan to Position Yourself for Success at a New Job

You just transitioned to a new job, it’s a great opportunity and you want to ensure you start off on the right foot. With every new job comes a bit of stress and nerves as you find your way of doing things. Staying on top of everything you need to learn and accomplish can be overwhelming. Not visibly seeing your accomplishments or how far you have come can be disheartening at times.  

We suggest using the four stages of learning (explained below) in conjunction with a tracking system to monitor the different stages of your new role and the progress you’ve made along the way. It's easy to forget a few steps here and there and even easier to miss the many achievements and headway you will make within the first 3 – 6 months of a new job. By tracking these things together, you will see what needs a bit more work and where you can celebrate some wins.  

In this article, we reference Abraham Maslow’s 4 stages of learning. 

  1. Unconscious incompetenceWe don’t know that we don’t know. 
  2. Conscious incompetence – We know that we don’t know. 
  3. Conscious competence We work at what we don’t know. 
  4. Unconscious competenceWe don’t have to think about knowing it. 

The Four Stages of Learning

The Breakdown 

Your First 30 Days on the New Job: Educate  

The first 30 days in your new position are all about getting acquainted with your team, learning about the company and understanding the core responsibilities of your role. In the four stages of learning, this is stage 1: unconsciously incompetent, meaning you are probably feeling nervous and thinking; “I don’t even know what I don’t know.” Don’t worry, you are on track. 

Leaning into 60 Days of the New Gig: Contribute  

By 60 days on the job, the goal should be to start contributing. Start speaking up in meetings, performing tasks with less guidance or oversight, and begin adding value. This stage is like stage two of the four stages of learning where you are consciously incompetent; this stage will be overwhelming because now you know what you don’t know.    

By 90 Days: Start to Initiate  

By 90 days you want to start taking the initiative where you can. Be proactive and identify projects or areas of improvement that you can tackle or volunteer to help with. 

A great way to monitor your progress is with a spreadsheet to track your advancements and accomplishments (while CRUSHING imposter syndrome). At this point in your new role, you will be reaching stages three and four of the four stages of learning: stage three, consciously competent: I know it, but it isn't 2nd nature yet.” And stage four, unconsciously competent, “It is routine now; it is 2nd nature and comes easy.”  

These stages come at different times for everyone, establish baselines that work for you and your role. Understand expectations, have patience and you will succeed. We found Break Your Budget, millennial money tips blog! Has great resources to help get your career started off successfully.  

We have provided a template modeled after Break Your Budget.  

Downloadable Excel Sheet: TRG New Role Progress Tracker 

Use these tools to set yourself up for overall success and future promotions. Remember, if you have any questions about your job, make sure you ask for help. Your mentor or supervisor would like you to succeed and will typically be happy to help with any questions. Good luck with your new endeavor.

Give Feedback When a Candidate Doesn’t Get Chosen

Why feedback matters  

It’s not easy to be on either side of bad news; being rejected for a job or having to tell someone that you’re not offering them a role they’ve invested time and energy into is not an enviable position. How an organization handles applicants is perceived as a reflection of how it treats its employees, so it’s best done well. Giving feedback to rejected candidates (who made it through to the interview process) benefits everyone involved. 

Candidates are 3.5x less likely to re-apply to a company when not informed about their application. 

Giving Applicant Feedback Benefits the Candidate + Your Company Reputation 

Providing a candidate with actionable feedback and insight into why the decision was made creates goodwill between the candidate and your company. The candidate is more likely to think highly of your business and speak in kind regard about their experience. This small act does a world of good for your talent brand—because you’ve humanized the candidate's experience through to the end, with empathy. On the other hand, no response at all is frustrating and disheartening and can result in a negative perception of your organization/brand. A negative applicant experience or simply “ghosting,” applicants can turn off both future applicants and customers. Respond professionally to all applicants and consider giving feedback to interviewees who finish in second, third or fourth place. 

Giving Feedback Strengthens your Hiring Process 

Having a standard system/SOP in place for applicant feedback means you have a thorough process for sorting out finalists. Giving feedback to applicants demands clarity on what makes an ideal candidate for the role. Providing an applicant with reasoning for your decision compels you to articulate why specific candidates don’t make the cut. During this action, you will identify patterns in your candidate feedback that can in turn help you observe weak spots in your hiring process. This may alert you to the fact that your job description needs to be revised. Collecting these data points helps you refine your hiring process and benefit future hires.  

Simple Tips on Giving Feedback to Passed Applicants: 

  • Be respectful. 
  • Tell the truth, in a helpful way. 
  • Keep the message clear and concise.  
  • Give examples where you can. 
  • Tie your feedback back to your job description. 
  • Focus on the potential: 
    • Give feedback on changeable qualities – focus on skills that the candidate can acquire or responses that could have been stronger, rather than saying you went with a more experienced applicant. This gives the candidate something to work on and improve upon.  

Why Your Mindset is Crucial to Your Success, Personal Growth and Business.

The principal factor influencing a person's success, whether personal or professional, is one's mindset. What you consistently think about has a direct impact on your behavior and output. What some may consider a trivial thing makes a stark difference and accounts for the primary distinction between those who succeed and those who do not. To achieve your goals, your mindset needs to match your aspirations, otherwise, it will hold you back from being successful in your endeavors. 

Focus on these areas to master your mindset and achieve success personally and professionally. 

1. Your Self-esteem  

To accomplish anything, one must feel capable of doing so – this is where high self-esteem impacts your success. Self-esteem is an internal dialogue that informs how we perceive and evaluate our worth, whether that be positive or negative. It also frames our self-concept (the comprehensive view we have of ourselves). To develop strong self-esteem, you must begin with a strong and optimistic mindset.  

Your self-esteem is a crucial tool that affects your daily self-dialogue and reinforces your beliefs, attitudes and feelings about yourself. So, become the sentinel of your mind and plant healthy seeds rather than criticism and doubt. What you think becomes reality. 

2. Your Perspective  

Tony Robins said it best Nothing in life has any meaning except the meaning [we] give it.” How we attach meaning to events and circumstances has a profound effect on whether we view situations with optimism or pessimism. Your mindset and perspective run parallel to one another; if you have a negative perspective, chances are you have a negative mindset. Looking at your perspective through rose-colored spectacles increases the likelihood of formulating a well-rounded perspective and attaining long-term success. 

3. Your Determination  

Without some drive and determination, accomplishing any objective will be less than pleasant. Try making it to the gym with no determination. Yeah, how comfortable is that couch?  

Your drive and determination have the power to direct your mindset and motivate commitment. Your drive is what will push you past your comfort zone. People with healthy drive/determination are self-motivated and strive to accomplish more. A positive mind and strong drive will not waste time complaining about circumstances but instead work with conviction to improve them. 

4. Your Grit 

Grit, willpower, courage, fortitude; all these nouns boil down to mental toughness. Described by Oxford as “A quality of mind or intellect characterized by a refusal to be intimidated, a determination to follow through even when things are going badly, and an ability to control emotions and remain highly focused when under pressure.” With the basis of a strong mindset, you will be able to work towards mental toughness and clarity. Once mentally tough, you can become the person that digs deep and works persistently to achieve goals. 

So the equation to a great mindset and probable success goes something like this: 

Self Esteem + Perspective + Determination + Mental Toughness = Successful mindset = Successful life 

Once you have your mindset in good order, discover things that inspire you. Matthew McConaughey gives a speech on defining success for yourself. A great listen to shape your mindset and success.

2022 Retirement Wave, Prepare to Fill the Gaps

This year is expected to have a record number of Americans retiring. Several factors are driving this retirement surge, including the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Two million more workers retired during the pandemic than trends predicted. An estimated 50.3% of adults aged 55 and over left the workforce in the third quarter of 2021. Although these numbers have started to recover, it remains unclear how many baby boomers will continue employment or eventually retire in 2022.  With millions of baby boomers retiring sooner rather than later, employers will need a strong workforce plan for replacing existing workers. If trends continue in the same direction your company will likely have workforce gaps that need to be filled without the talent to suffice. Filling the holes will be challenging while the ranks of the Gen X workers are simply not enough and many millennials lack tenure.   As more Americans retire, there will be a shift in the workforce and how we work. As tenured staff walks out the door, the loss of institutional knowledge and wisdom goes with them, draining industries. On the bright side, the retirement boom presents an opportunity for younger workers to step into leadership roles and take on more responsibility. On the other hand, retirees gain the opportunity to “give back” by mentoring the next generation and sharing their expertise.  

What can you do to prepare for the retirement wave? 

1. Create an exit strategy for older employees. This can benefit your company if an employee is a top performer. A slow transition allows you to prepare a replacement without the shock that comes with a sudden retirement. 2. Develop your workforce and support mentoring programs.   3. Continue educating and training your workforce to steadily be prepared for the loss of high-level employees. Develop knowledge-sharing and training programs.  4. Utilize professional contract staff to fill gaps while you find permanent employees. Benefits include: 
      • Reduced long-term labor costs
      • Shorter hiring process
      • Instant impact
      • Flexibility: Hiring a contractor gives you the option of evaluating whether you have a long-term job requirement in a function.
Eventually, you are going to need workers to replace the baby boomer employees who are retiring. The sooner you start exploring your options and planning, the better prepared you and your organization will be. 

Look to The Person, Not the Paper: Leverage Recruiters

A Resume is Not a Conversation

We took a recent survey and of course, it seems obvious that everyone wants to look past that 8×10 piece of paper, most hiring professionals simply don't have time to do what recruiters are exclusively dedicated to – having conversations.

Resume formats may have evolved over the years, though their role in making talent decisions has not. Although resumes provide a lot of valuable information about a candidate, they alone are not predictive of performance or reflective of a candidate's true potential. This summary is one glimpse into who candidates are as complete people. We believe a candidate's employability is so much more than a piece of paper.  

According to Glassdoor, most hiring professionals spend 7 seconds or less screening resumes. That is less than a minute to decide whether a candidate should get an interview or not. Bonkers.  

“As an organization, we have always believed that 50% of a hire is chemistry. It’s conversations that allow chemistry to play out. Have conversations. Hire people not a resume. Worst case scenario, you make connections along the way.” 

— Mark Schwartz, President TRG

Where Resumes Go Wrong 

We understand employers must narrow the scope of applicants by sifting through resumes. Hiring screening processes are now largely automated, during the sifting process, many potential great fits are lost during resume keyword scanning and applicant tracking systems (ATS). This is where recruiters can have a high impact on your hires. Recruiters will discover what tracking systems will not. Through thorough real-life conversations, recruiters uncover abilities and expertise that software systems would bypass. 

Recruiters Uncover What Matters 

A recruiter will ask targeted questions to uncover a fuller picture of a candidate's competency, critical thinking and personality. This allows you to read between the lines and have your talent prequalified. When recruiters and hiring managers only focus on hard skills and work experience, rather than a person's potential and soft skills, they are more likely to miss hiring someone who will excel in a role and help the organization flourish.  

We challenge you to look beyond resumes to find your next great hire. Do not miss the chance to employ someone extraordinary. Leverage a recruiter's expertise to discover the best talent for your team. 

Paralysis by Overanalysis? Overcome Choice Overload

The average adult makes more than 35,000 decisions per day. From the moment we wake up, we’re bombarded with choices. Some are small like what to have for breakfast, others are more important, like considering a career change. In tandem, they can weigh heavily on our mental state and quality of life. This is known as choice overload, it causes decision fatigue leaving you emotionally distraught, irritable and paralyzed. 

 This level of mental wear can make even a benign task like picking up toothpaste seem exhausting. An average grocery store has over 39,500 items, and this one in particular, while conveniently located on your way home from the office, has over 40 types of toothpaste, all of which swear will give you white teeth and a (winning smile).

In a Ted Talk, Barry Schwartz, author of Paradox of Choice – Why More is Less, gives a great example of choice overload:  

Barry tells the audience about a study done on investments in voluntary retirement plans, Barry got investment records from Vanguard for about a million employees and 2,000 different workplaces.   “For every 10 mutual funds the employer offered, the rate of participation went down 2% - so if you offer 50 fund options - 10 % fewer employees participate than if you only offer 5 fund options.   Why? Because with 50 funds to choose from it is so hard to choose which fund that most people will just put it off. This means making the decision is so hard that employees pass up significant money from their employers. Paralysis is a consequence of having too many choices."  

On the other hand, businesses often unconsciously put consumers in a state of decision fatigue. Business owners can remedy this problem by categorizing and narrowing down their products and options, alleviating choice overload for consumers.

Too many choices - choice overload - overcoming choice overload

In The Jam Study, by Sheena S. Iyengar she experimented with a jam stand offering samples in a grocery store. One stand had 24 choices and one had six.  40% of the shoppers tried the jams and 30% made a purchase. With more options, 60% tried the jams, but just 3% made a purchase. The conclusion: “choice is alluring but confusing”. Customers given too many choices are ten times less likely to buy. 

Dealing with choice overload is a responsibility both consumers and businesses have to share. Consumers can make themselves more resilient toward the daunting number of choices in their day by practicing some of these tips: 

Tips to overcome choice overload:

  • Be mindful about your choices 
  • Narrow down to what is important  
  • Categorize items into groups  
  • Set a time limit on decision-making  
  • Practice on the small stuff  
  • Decide and commit  
  • Make some choices automatic 
  • Go with your gut

Leadership Vs. Management 

The terms “leadership” and “management” are often used interchangeably. While there is some overlap between the work that leaders and managers do, there are also notable differences. The main difference between leaders and managers is that leaders have people follow them while managers have people who work for them.

Leaders are more about looking for opportunities for improvement company-wide, whereas managers set out to achieve organizational goals through implementing various processes. While managers have procedures, leaders have a vision. Leaders are more intent on thinking ahead and capitalizing on opportunities down the road. Both pieces of the puzzle are equally important.

Leaders create an open environment in which their teams are comfortable enough to speak up and consistently communicate. The leader encourages and inspires, focusing on people and overall improvements. The manager sets realistic expectations and benchmarks focusing on systems and structure. While managers work in the present, leaders look to the future.  

 See Related: Daily Habits of the Most Productive Leaders

“Employees who work for engaged managers are 59% more likely to be engaged themselves.”- Gallup 

In addition to inspiring employees, leaders engage in learning and development making it a priority for themselves and their managers. Whether you are a leader, a manager or a mix of both. Strive to lead and manage with passion and integrity. Leaders inspire people and managers drive their success, effective work systems should have a healthy balance between the two.