AS SEEN IN AS SEEN IN
cyber eye small

Can computers think like recruiters?

+-*A Globe and Mail article recently explored how computers are taking on an increasingly important role in the recruiting process. The news piece discussed how software company, SAP recently started looking for candidates using technology. In searching for recruits for their sales academy, SAP asked applicants to first take a corporate culture test, and then a situational judgment...
criminal record

I’ve got a criminal record. How can I get a job?

+-*My criminal record is hamstringing my job search. Every job seems to ask for a background check as a condition of employment. How can I work around this problem? What can I do to get a job before they prejudge me?

How to hire lucky salespeople (and make sure they stay lucky!)

+-*If you’ve ever had to hire salespeople for your team, you may have come across this conundrum: You meet a candidate who is a charismatic and engaging “talker.” He brings a successful track record with him from his previous sales role, so you hire him with great expectations. Once he joins your team he’s not as successful as before and he just can’t produce. What went wrong here?
accountability

How to make employees more accountable

+-*A culture of accountability in the workplace starts, not with employees, but with the managers who lead them. Yet, few companies incorporate metrics in performance reviews that mandate an evaluation of this key business driver. After successfully placing hundreds of people in various roles, across numerous industries, we’ve found certain consistent managerial patterns and leadership traits...

I’m working 50 hours a week. How can I get my life back?

+-*The following response by Julie Labrie, President of BlueSky Personnel Solutions originally appeared in the  The Globe and Mail. THE QUESTION I work at a job I really like, but it is beginning to overrun my life. It’s supposed to be a 40-hour work week, but there’s no way the work can be done in that time. It’s not for lack of competence, because I am experienced and efficient at the job....
job description

Going Beyond the Job Description to Find the Best Fit

+-*There are many variables that lead to new hires, from business growth to sudden employee departures to temporary absences such as maternity leaves. No matter the context, the hiring process today still builds its foundation on the good old job description. But hiring considerations must go beyond skills, qualifications and experience, and must include leadership styles, social culture,...
part-time job

It pays to work at some of these part-time jobs

+-*The following article by Kat Sieniuc, was originally published in The Globe and Mail. While part-time jobs are often thought of as stressful, low-paying work, there are some positions that can at least let you make a living. CareerCast, a job search site out of Carlsbad, Calif., has put out its annual list for the best part-time jobs in North America based on income, employment growth,...
looking for a job

I haven’t had a full-time job in three years

+-*The following article by Julie Labrie, president of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, was originally published in The Globe and Mail. THE QUESTION I am a 51-year-old woman who has worked as a secretary for 33 years. I was badly bullied at a job almost three years ago and I was fired. It took me seven months to find another job, which I stayed at for three months. I then was offered a job...
interview day

Interview Day – Put Your Game Face On

+-*It’s no surprise that the tweet below from Matt Buckland, Head of Talent and Recruiting at Forward Partners in London went viral recently. Karma – the guy who pushed past me on the tube and then suggested I go F myself just arrived for his interview…with me… — Matt Buckland (@ElSatanico) February 16, 2015 This is a scenario that we are consistently warning our...

Why Employee Engagement is Not About the Workplace

+-*Companies make big investments into employee engagement strategies – to attract top talent, increase productivity, and retain their best people. In fact, Harvard Business Review recently quoted a study that found companies have spent $720 million annually to foster employee engagement. Unfortunately, within that same context, Gallup, reported employee engagement to be at record lows (only...
how to motivate employees

How to Identify Inspirational Leaders

+-*What kind of leaders do you have within your organization? Authoritative? Affiliative? Democratic? How about Coaching leaders, Pacesetting leaders or Coercive leaders? Which leadership style best describes you?
USA

I’m moving to the U.S., should I start my job search now?

+-*The following article by Julie Labrie, president of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, was originally published in The Globe and Mail. THE QUESTION I’m moving to the United States and getting married to my American fiancé. Once I get a green card I’ll look for a job. I currently live in British Columbia and once I move around Christmas time and begin the whole process it will likely be about six...
top talent

Recruiter Tip: A Hiring Advantage During Holiday Downtime

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+-*Seasonal downtimes, when other companies are slowing down, can be a hiring manager’s best opportunity to speak to their desired candidates exclusively – it’s a “seller’s market” in the recruitment world.
biingual

How to Secure Bilingual Talent

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+-*Workopolis published an article recently regarding the twelve skills that Canadian employers are having the most difficulty finding.  Can you guess which skill was at the top of the list? Bilingualism. Since Canada is officially a bilingual country, it’s no surprise that bilingualism (specifically the ability to speak fluently in English and French), continues to be in high demand,...

I’m Struggling With My Boss Requests

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+-*The following article by Julie Labrie, president of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, was originally published in The Globe and Mail. THE QUESTION I’m an intern at a public relations company and am often struggling with my boss requests, as I find them unethical. For instance, we use a database to contact journalists to pitch stories, and often journalists will leave notes about best practices...

Do I need to include an address on my résumé?

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+-*The following article by Julie Labrie, president of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, was originally published in The Globe and Mail. THE QUESTION Although I have lived in Toronto for over 10 years and I am seeking employment in the city, for family reasons I have temporarily decamped to Montreal. I currently travel back and forth, and taking up a position in Toronto would not pose any...
culture-of-innovation

Creating a Culture of Innovation and Risk

+-*Are you one of the more than 20 million people who have already purchased an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus? According to some financial gurus, Apple’s iPhone 6 sales alone are producing 10% of all US economic growth. This staggering statistic underlines just how critical it is to create a culture of innovation and risk-taking in business today. It’s at the top of many a CEO’s list. But this strategy...
hire

Who “owns” a job candidate – the employer or recruiter?

+-*There have been some stirring debates around a Globe and Mail article where I was quoted recently. A mother wrote to the newspaper’s Nine to Five section, about a recruiter potentially sabotaging her son’s job search. As expected, one of the debates centered around why the mother was writing in about her son’s dilemma (a question that came to my mind too). But much of the ado was generated...
employment agency

I had a bad experience with an employment agency. Should I go back?

+-*The following article was originally published in The Globe and Mail. THE QUESTION I have been searching for work for a month, since the end of my most recent job, with no success – not even an interview. This lack of positive results has absolutely convinced me that I must return to an employment agency with which I had a bad experience in 2007 – entirely my fault and for which I...
bad recruiter

A Recruiter is Sabotaging My Son’s Job Search

+-*The following article was originally published in The Globe and Mail. NINE TO FIVE – Special to the Globe and Mail BY: JULIE LABRIE AND DANIEL LUBLIN THE QUESTION My 27-year-old son has a bachelor of science degree but could not get a job in his chosen field, despite four summers of related work experience. After a year of unemployment, he went back to college for two years to study...
bad news

How To Deliver Bad News To Employees

+-*Delivering bad news to an employee can be one of the most difficult tasks any manager has under his or her work responsibilities, especially when the conversation centres around employee performance, lack of productivity, wrong-doing, etc. The conversations can often be personally taxing for managers. Peter Bregman recently wrote an excellent article in the Harvard Business Review about...
passport

Can a headhunter demand a copy of my passport?

+-*The following article by Julie Labrie, president of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, was originally published on The Globe and Mail ASK A RECRUITER – Special to the Globe and Mail THE QUESTION Is this normal nowadays? A headhunter gave me a letter of offer from a company along with his own letter that asks for a photocopy of my driver’s licence, a photocopy of the picture page of my...
Contract workers versus employees

Are your contract workers employees in the eyes of the CRA?

+-*The following article by Julie Labrie, president of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, was originally published on Workopolis. Are your contract workers actually employees in the eyes of the Canadian government? If the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) sees them as such, and you haven’t made payroll deductions, the monetary implications in assessments and fines could be daunting. Test your knowledge...

How Humble Leadership Impacts Sales

+-*To rally his team to increase sales, one manager of a big-box retail store promised, that if his team could surpass their sales goals, he would work a full day as a parking lot attendant. The staff would get to pick which day and which shift he would take over. If you have worked in retail, you’ll know that the lot attendant has a very tough job working through sleet, snow, rain or on the...
Ace A Job Interview

How to Ace an Interview – Free Seminar with Recruiter Julie Labrie

+-*Attention Job Seekers! Here’s how to ace an interview If only you could read the mind of an HR Manager as you interview for your dream job. Well, this is as close as you can get. Join our very own Julie Labrie, President of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, for a unique seminar on How to Ace an Interview. In this free seminar, Julie will share the “behavioural” interview techniques that...

Turn Overwhelmed Employees into Inspired Employees

+-*Over 60% of organizations say their top challenge is overwhelmed employees. Turn them into inspired workers by creating a meaningful, rewarding workplace. In a recent Forbes article, contributor Josh Bersin discussed how Deloitte has found the top two people issues facing organizations in 2014 are leadership and retention. More over, after companies have spent years focusing on cost...
table-discussion

Why Are Headhunters So Expensive?

+-*I’m often asked this question. But, many business executives also ask their HR and hiring teams this same question – for good reason. In business, it’s not just important, but imperative to account for every dollar spent, with a measurable return-on-investment. We must ask: what is the business value for every spend? A Globe and Mail reader recently posed that question to me – why are...

Why Are Recruiters So Expensive?

+-*The following article by Julie Labrie, President of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, was originally published in The Globe and Mail. ASK A RECRUITER – Special to the Globe and Mail The Question I’ve been working with my human resources people for some time, because recruitment is a major problem for us. We’re in a competitive industry, and finding and retaining the right talent is a top...
negotiation

How To Decode Body Language

+-*The following article by Julie Labrie, president of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, was originally posted on Workopolis. Research suggests that body language and paralinguistic cues (e.g. intonation, body posture, facial expression, etc.) influence up to 93 % of human communication, while only 7% is shaped by the words we use. Imagine the profound impact that non-verbal communication can have...

When Others Talk About Your Company and Compensation Online

+-*Jobseekers on Glassdoor review compensation/benefits and former employee commentary, to get the goods on prospective employers Once upon a time in a downtown boardroom in January, business executives discussed closely-guarded, proprietary HR policies. Fast forward to 2014, and businesses are now using social media to virtually welcome prospective employees into those boardrooms – to be a...
interview

Are You Objective During The Interview Process?

+-*Have you ever gone through a hiring process where your colleagues and you have given some interviewees impromptu nicknames for quick and memorable internal references, such as “the yellow shirt guy” or “the jazz lady”? Image courtesy of Olga Vasilkova and Dreamstime.com. While it’s human nature for us to use unique markers to remember specific people among a line-up of many, we may...

Succession Planning Tips For Business

+-*What happens if a key executive at the helm of the business leaves today? According to a recent report issued by BMO Wealth Institute, less than 40% of Canadian business owners have a succession plan. But life can throw many curve-balls, often at the most inconvenient times. What if a key employee within your company is suddenly unable to work for a period of time? What if a pivotal member...
Career-Rut

How Do I Break Out Of A Career Rut?

+-*THE QUESTION I am pursuing a certified general accountant designation at fourth level and work as a lease accountant with a property management firm in Toronto. While on the path toward a CGA, I want to get into a financial reporting position – largely dominated by either chartered accountant students or designated CAs – but the recruiters I meet with are only interested in putting me into...

Six Tips on Corporate Giving

+-*Corporate giving is no longer simply trendy, it’s a business imperative. Some businesses donate funds directly from product sales such as the popular Toms Shoes “One for One” campaign, while others engage employees in team-building initiatives through charity, such as volunteering on a build site for Habitat for Humanity. No matter the charitable choice, your charitable work matters to...

Corporate Culture Shock

+-*What is Corporate Culture? Competition for top talent has become increasingly competitive.  Companies are all attempting to build unique corporate cultures to attract and retain their employees. Engage in discussion with: Julie Labrie – President, Blue Sky Personnel Solutions Elena Iacono – Specialist, Professional Communication Daniele Bertrand – President, Dufflet Pastries...
leadership

Assess Emotional Intelligence to Weed Out “Bad People Managers”

+-*A once happy workplace is now tenuous. The department is fragmented. Everyone is gossiping and we’ve lost some great talent recently. It’s starting to look like a revolving door. Does this sound familiar? It could be the result of a “bad people manager.” It could be someone who is highly talented from a technical standpoint, but unable to inspire the team, or in a worst case scenario, is...
looking for recruiter

Looking for a Recruiter

+-*Recruiters won’t touch me because my employer is a client THE QUESTION I am not satisfied in my current position, but given the industry in which I work, it is difficult to find an appropriate placement without using a recruitment agency. My current employer has an agreement with effectively all recruitment firms in our industry, prohibiting them from placing any employee of the company...

I’m Willing to Trade Information for a Job – So Why Can’t I Get Hired?

+-*THE QUESTION I am employed, but I am in a rather unique job-seeking situation. I am looking for assistance in contacting companies in hopes of getting a new job. In return, I am willing to a trade information for a job – that would benefit the company. I have done this in the past with mixed results. I’ve contacted companies with a letter of introduction, telling them I have...

Are you Hiring Candidates with Soft Skills?

+-*According to Mark Murphy, author of Hiring for Attitude, and CEO of Leadership IQ, a study tracking 20,000 new hires revealed high performing employees speak in the past tense 40 per cent more often than low performers. In fact, low performers use the present tense 120 times more often, and are 70 per cent more likely to use the future tense than high performers. There are, in fact, many...

Employee Health Issues – What’s Your Legal Duty to Accommodate?

+-*A Globe and Mail reader recently asked me whether he had a legal or moral obligation to reveal to a potential employer that he had been diagnosed with blood cancer. Of course, the long and short answer to his question is – no. He is protected by both provincial and federal human rights legislation that prohibits discrimination on the basis of a disability – even if the illness requires...

Do I Have to Reveal My Medical History in a Job Interview?

+-*The Question I have a dilemma concerning my health, specifically, what I am obliged to say, either legally or morally, upon my return to the work force. Like many Canadians, I was laid off. After a year, I made the final-four candidates list for a great business development job in my industry. Unfortunately, the day after my interview, I was diagnosed with a blood cancer. That was last...

Top 5 Reasons Your Employees Are Leaving

+-*Many HR thought-leaders are predicting that talent retention will be one of the greatest upcoming challenges for professionals in the people management field. Fierce competition, the norm of changing careers multiple times, and talent shortages in niche areas all contribute to this landscape. Putting strategies in place to motivate top performers to stay may be the difference between...

Does Time off Impact Business Productivity?

+-*A recent study by the Society for Human Resource Management in the US has identified a growing trend where employees are allowed to buy and sell vacation time. Perhaps not surprisingly, in a country where almost one in four Americans has no paid vacation, more employees are taking advantage of buying vacations rather than selling them. Image courtesy littlewormy via ShutterStock. Canadian...

Tips to Discover a Company Culture

+-*The question: My last two employers have been disappointing for me. I can do the jobs asked of me, it just turns out that the workplace atmosphere – the bosses who managed me and the colleagues I worked with – have all been toxic at some level. I’ve spoken about this with my wife and other friends and their advice is the same: Look for another job and get out of where I am. My dilemma is...

6 Reasons to Consider Hiring An Athlete

+-*I was approached the other day by the Globe and Mail, for an article on how athletics can boost people’s careers. We discussed how Olympians can have a competitive advantage over other candidates in a business-setting, based on their training. But it doesn’t stop at the Olympic level. Dedicated athletes in general can be great hires in the business environment. Astute employers...

Four Tips to Avoid Recruitment Faux Pas in Social Media

+-*Recruitment is an inherently social activity. I’m looking for the best employees for my clients, and I’ll venture anywhere, both offline and online to find them. Though, in our socially-wired world, that online/offline distinction is quickly becoming obsolete as almost everything becomes public-facing. So, the key to success in online engagement with prospective employees lies in becoming...

How to Use Social Media For Recruitment

+-*Meet Julie Labrie & Discuss Social Media for Recruitment Strategies Date: Thursday June 13, 2013 (North York Civic Centre) Recruiting quality staff is no longer a matter of placing an ad in the newspaper and then wading through a mountain of paper résumés. Today’s tech-savvy candidates expect to find jobs the same way they do much of their social interacting – online. This...

Career Counselling After Living Abroad

+-*The Question I have just moved to Toronto after living in the United Kingdom for the past 11 years. I don’t have many connections here and I am feeling lost in my “career path.”I’m looking for some career counselling after living abroad. Can you point me in the direction of some free career counselling or someone I can talk to about careers or going to college? Any advice you could...

Trend Watch: The Future of Employee Benefits

+-*Q&A with Morgan Marlowe, President of Perkopolis There’s a new paradigm contributing to the shifting future of employee benefits: social perks. The US market is more mature in this HR area than Canada is, but we are catching up. Beyond traditional benefits, many companies are now joining discount programs that give their employees access to unique products, services and experiences...

Ace the Interview: A video series from Globe & Mail’s Report on Business

+-*Ace the Interview – A video series by the Globe & Mail If you’re looking for a job right now, check out this must-watch Report on Business video series by the Globe and Mail. It features our very own Julie Labrie, president of BlueSky Personnel Solutions, along side Eileen Chadnick, principal of Big Cheese Coaching. In this series, the newspaper’s Careers web editor,...

Use Social Media to Maximize Recruitment Strategies

+-*Join Julie Labrie at HRPA West Toronto’s PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT DINNER on Wednesday, April 17, 2013. This event is at the Weston Golf and Country Club  at 50 St. Philips Road, Toronto.  In this session, learn how to use social media to maximize recruitment strategies. This session will feature Julie Labrie, President of Blue Sky Personnel Solutions. She will be available to answer...

Derailing the Script: How to Get Real Answers From Candidates

+-*By now many of you have seen Heineken’s online video, “The Candidate” which has gone viral — over 3.425 million views to date. The video — a part HR effort, part marketing effort, shows how Heineken dealt with HR’s typical “standard questions, prepared answers” dilemma, in their European intern search. Many of us would love to have access to hidden cameras and a fleet of staff to pull off...

4 Questions to Ask Your Prospective Recruiter

+-*It’s hard to evaluate a third-party recruiter in advance. The ultimate test, of course, is whether the recruiter brings you high-quality candidates. But you won’t know this until you’ve worked with that recruiter for months. You’ll certainly want to choose a recruiter who has experience hiring in your industry for the type of talent you need. But these basics just...

How Do I Set Realistic Salary Expectations?

+-*The question: How do I determine my salary expectations? I’ve been asked that question in interviews and on certain job websites. I don’t want to price myself out of the market, but how can I make sure I don’t undersell myself either? What’s the best way to set realistic salary expectations? The Answer: In any negotiation, knowing what’ s important to the other party can help you...

How Do You Answer a Quirky Job Interview Question?

+-*Watch this latest video featuring our President, Julie Labrie, to find out how to answer quirky job interview questions. This is the last segment of a 7 part series featured in the Globe and Mail, check out all the videos

How to Show Off Your Skills in a Job Interview

+-*Show your skills in a job interview Watch this video to find out how you can show off your skills in a job interview.

How to Build a Business Case For a New Hire

+-*We live in a work culture where “being busy” is glorified. As company budgets get tighter, and ambitions rise higher, the word “busy” can become synonymous with “over-worked.” Many of us regularly leave work with a never-ending to-do list. Overworked employees are more stressed, and often less productive, which negatively impacts profitability. But if we say it’s time to hire more staff,...

Is It Okay to Ask My Clients About Job Openings?

+-*The question: I have been employed by the same company for the past five years and I am considering looking for a new position in my field, corporate wellness. I was thinking about contacting some of our current clients to see whether they had any positions available. I see this as a great way to find a new position as I work directly with these companies, know the individuals involved in...

The Impact of Gender Intelligence in your Workplace

+-*Special feature: Q&A With Gender Intelligence Expert, Barbara Annis John Gray’s “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus” sold over 50 million copies and re-affirmed socially, what many of us experienced for years: the fundamental differences between the genders. We talk about these differences in relationship settings all the time, so why is it, in business, organizations often manage...

Stand out to Hiring Managers – Canada’s Job Fair 2013

+-*Join Julie Labrie at Canada’s Job Fair 2013 for a live Q&A session on March 7 at the Air Canada Centre. If you could be a fly on the wall at a company that just interviewed you (as they are discussing their impression of you), what would you want to know? Julie Labrie, President of BlueSky Personnel Solutions interviews over 1,500 job candidates a year, and reports her assessments back...

Why Did You Leave Your Last Job?

+-*So why did your leave your last job? A popular question in job interviews is “Why did you leave your last job, and why do you want this position?” What are interviewers trying to find out when they ask you this question? Watch our President, Julie Labrie, answer a frequently asked question in job interviews – how to address why you would leave your last job. This video is...

How Do You Answer the Question – What Is Your Dream Job?

+-*Watch this video to find out why our President Julie Labrie asks “What is your dream job?”

THE GLOBE AND MAIL: How To Prepare For Your Next Interview

+-*The Globe And Mail:  How To Prepare For Your Next Interview Having trouble landing a job? Here’s a video featuring our President Julie Labrie on how to prepare for your next interview.

Federal Court Ruling – Companies Must Acccommodate Parents Who Need Childcare

+-*Federal Court Ruling – Companies Must Accommodate Parents Who Need Childcare Special feature: Q&A with Employment Lawyer, Stuart Rudner Canadian employers may have been caught off-guard this week by a Federal Court ruling that says companies must accommodate parents who need childcare. Justice Leonard Mandamin recently found Canada Border Services Agency discriminated against its...

How Can I Move Up If I Cannot Leave the Details to Others?

+-*How Can I Move Up If I Cannot Leave the Details to Others? The Question: I am currently a senior manager of engineering at a large technology company and would like to be promoted to director. I’ve been in the job five years. My manager has said that I need to “think” like a director – basically more big picture, proactive moves on my part. I believe that if I relinquish some of my...

How Do I Leverage My past Experience as a Recent Grad?

+-*The following article was originally posted on January 22, 2013, in the Globe & Mail. How Do I Leverage My Past Experience as a Recent Grad? The Question: I’m a recent university grad with a degree in accounting; all of my previous work experience is in marketing and event management. I will be working to obtain my CMA (certified management accountant) designation this fall and would...

How to Make Business Resolutions Stick

+-*Have you been keeping up with your New Year’s resolutions? How about your business resolutions?  According to a recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology, more than a third of us are well on our way to breaking our New Year’s resolutions. Statistically, it’s due to happen by the end of this month. Perhaps we can blame physiology. Social scientists have recently...

Tips to Market Company Culture to Potential Employees

+-*Whether you celebrate casual clothes over ‘suits’ such as APPLE, or travel between meetings on scooters such as GOOGLE, your company culture is one of your best selling features to attract potential employees. Here are 10 check points that can help market your company’s “DNA”: 1. Walk The Talk: Take a poll with your employees to find out what they think about the company’s culture. Is your...

Is There Any Value In An Unpaid Internship?

+-*The following article was originally posted on December 11, 2012, in the Globe & Mail. The Question: Do you see value in taking unpaid internships? Would you recommend that students who are having a hard time getting a job in their field take on relevant unpaid internships? Or is that just a way to sell yourself (and your pocketbook) short? The Answer: Unpaid internships can be...

How To Find Innovators For Your Organization

+-*According to a recent Forbes Insight Study that interviewed over 1,200 executives across Europe, there are five key personality types which must be present within an organization to create a culture of innovation. These personality types are: Here is a breakdown of the 5 personality types of innovation found among the executives that were interviewed in this study. (Image credit:...

What Astronauts Can Teach Us About Hiring

+-*The following article was originally posted on Monday, December 3, 2012, in Workopolis. Consider this: most of us spend an average of 8 hours a day with our co-workers. In contrast, astronauts spend months living and working in confined quarters 24-hours a day with no escape. It’s no wonder space programs have delved deep into study of team dynamics. If we took a page from a space crew’s...

10 Ways To Maximize Employee Performance

+-*Image courtesy Frenk & Danielle Kaufmann (Dreamstime.Com). If your employees are slacking on the job, the key question to consider is: why? Employees who are unmotivated or unhappy tend to do the bare essentials just to pass the time before 5pm. Here are 10 positive ways to engage your employees – to create an environment that fosters motivation and creativity: 1. Keep them informed:...

Beware the “Presenter’s Paradox”: Why You May Be Passing On Your Best Candidate

+-*A recent article in the Harvard Business Review by Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson shares findings from new studies that suggest people’s natural instincts to sell themselves may actually be counter-productive. © Atee83 | Dreamstime Stock Photos This new finding can have a big impact on HR managers and hiring managers. If we’re not aware of these natural psychological presentation barriers, we...

I am Torn Between Two Career Paths. How do I Choose?

+-*The following article was originally posted on Monday, November 12, 2012, in the Globe and Mail. The Question: I have a career dilemma. I am currently torn between two career paths and I am not sure how to make a decision. I have a social work background and I am interested in either pursuing more education to move into the human resources field or to pursue a developmental services worker...

10 Ingenious Employee Incentives

+-*Whether you’re running a multi-million dollar corporation or a small boutique business, your biggest asset is your talent. So how do you keep your talented team motivated and productive? Consider these 10 ingenious incentives that truly stand out: 1. Employee Concierge Service — some leading edge companies offer senior executives an employee concierge service to help take life’s little...

Approach Finding a Job Like a Job

+-*The following article was originally posted on Tuesday, October 30, 2012, in the Globe and Mail. The Question: Are there any daily routines that job seekers should maintain while they’re looking for work in order to stay motivated and remain consistent with their job search efforts? The Answer: By far, the best way to stay motivated in your job search is to approach looking for a job as if...

Tips for Starting Your Journey in Social Media for Business

+-*Today, social media is becoming ubiquitous at home and in business. If you want to take advantage of this evolving platform, here are some tips!

Highlights from BMO’s new Hiring Outlook Report

+-*While jobless rates are hotly debated in the US presidential elections race, a new report from BMO Bank of Montreal entitled, the Hiring Outlook Report shows Canada’s outlook from business owners’ point-of-view is quite positive. According to the BMO Hiring Outlook Report,hiring is a top priority for 2013. According to the survey, hiring is a top priority for 2013. One in four businesses...

Day 2: 2012 Recruitment Innovation Summit

+-*It’s Day 2 of the Recruitment Innovation Summit and we’re having a blast! Visit our booth (booth #9) and chat with us, and for your last chance to get your own brain teasers!

Day 1: 2012 Recruitment Innovation Summit

+-*The BlueSky team is at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre today and tomorrow for the 2012 Recruitment Innovation Summit. We’re excited for all the scheduled sessions! I’m sure everyone will enjoy the summit like we will. Don’t forget to come by our booth (booth #9) during those breakout sessions for your very own brain teasers before they run out!

Are You Attending the 2012 Recruitment Innovation Summit? (October 17th and 18th, 2012)

+-*Julie Labrie and the BlueSky team will be at this year’s Recruitment Innovation Summit. If you are planning to attend this event, please stop by our BlueSky booth at Booth #9. We would love to meet you personally, and we do have some giveaways (come by before they run out!).

Attention Bilingual/French Job Seekers!

+-*Join Julie at the BilingualLink Career Fair for a live Q&A session October 16, 2012 (2pm-3pm) Do you have a burning question about job hunting or career development? Now is your chance to ask BlueSky’s Julie Labrie, who is also the Globe and Mail’s resident recruitment expert. Julie will be hosting a live, interactive Q&A session at this year’s BilingualLink...

Lots of Education But No Experience? Learn To Sell Yourself

+-*Though you may be lacking work experience, and competing against younger candidates, play up the skills you’ve honed while completing your masters degree. Sell your maturity to potential employers. Demonstrate how you can hit the ground running. Highlight your leadership capabilities. Show how you can think on your feet and make decisions with confidence. Sell your ability to assess risks....

10 Ways to Boost Business Through Diversity

+-*It is predicted by a 2011 Statistics Canada projections study. In 2031, 63% of Toronto's population will be compromised of “visible minority persons”. Here are 10 reasons why hiring a diverse workforce can boost your bottom line!

Should I Pursue an MBA or Get More Work Experience?

+-*The golden question! Should I further advance my education or should I gain more work experience? For general business positions, they just want to know you've graduated. An employer's main concern is your work experience because they want someone who will hit the ground running. The best way to accelerate your career in post-student life is to have a dual strategy!

Maximize Profitability Using Neuroscience-Based Training

+-*The study of neuroscience in business is an exciting, new and emerging field, and it is taking the C-suites by storm. At the forefront of this field is the distinguished neuroscience expert, Srinivasan Pillay, M.D., CEO of NeuroBusiness Group, who also serves as the Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. Image courtesy Shutterstock, copyright...

Julie Labrie Featured on Global Toronto News Hour – September 6, 2012

+-*A recent survey by the Canadian Payroll Association suggests workers still live paycheque to paycheque. A large number of Canadians would be in trouble one week after not receiving their paycheque and saving rates are still low. Marianne Dimain, from Global News reports with expert advice from Julie Labrie of BlueSky Personnel Solutions.

Top 10 Employee Development Tips

+-*Money is not usually the reason why employees leave their job. Employee satisfaction is directly correlated to having the opportunity to learn. This article gives you top 10 tips on employee development!

Q&A with Body Language Expert Eliot Hoppe

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The saying goes: “Never judge a book by its cover.” But in the hiring and interviewing process, first impressions, body language, and general non-verbal cues can have an incredibly powerful impact – much more so than we may realize. In my research for an article that was just published in Workopolis about decoding a job candidate’s body language, I interviewed several experts and I...

Decoding a Job Candidate’s Body Language

+-*How can we decode candidate's body language, the "silent cues"? Thought-leaders discuss what you can learn from a glance, and the topic of eye contact.

How Much Is Your Time Worth?

+-*Julie's latest article in her Ask a Recruiter column in the Globe & Mail answers the question: When is it worth it to bring in external expertise or administrative support?

How To Find Work In A Stagnant Job Market

+-*A slowing global economy and domestic GDP rate is expected to undermine the employment market. So what can job seekers do in such an environment? In case you want to join in on a discussion about the status of Canada’s job market this fall – the Globe and Mail will be hosting a live online discussion at 12pm EST today. They’ve invited me to join as a featured guest...

Looking To Work Abroad? Here’s the Homework You Need Do Do First

+-*Looking to work abroad? Do your homework on the local landscape and business culture, reach out to people in your industry and your contacts, and be prepared to answer the question, “Why should we consider you?”

Does It Make Sense For a Small Business To Use a Recruiter?

+-*The following article was originally posted on Tuesday, July 17, 2012 on The Globe and Mail. The question: I own a small travel agency in Toronto and need to hire someone who has the potential to become my “second-in-command.” I posted the job online and was flooded with responses, but none of them have what I need (at least on paper, anyway). I’m feeling a bit lost, and thought maybe I...

Hiring Bilingual Candidates: Casual Knowledge Versus Bilingual Capabilities

+-*For over 10 years, BlueSky Personnel Solutions has specialized in helping organizations fill bilingual job positions. Julie Labrie, from BlueSky Personnel Solutions offers the following top three tips when preparing to hire a bilingual job candidate.

Finding the Right Fit: 5 Tips For Successful Hiring

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The following article was originally posted on Thursday, June 21, 2012 on Workopolis.

In the world of HR, we often feel like “fit”...

Canada Works 2025: Understanding the Importance of Human Capital

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The beginning of 2012 marked a thought-provoking time for discussions on the future of our Canadian economy and society. In January the Human Resources Professionals Association Annual Conference, themed “2012 and Beyond… Inventing the Future,” examined demographic, social and technological...

How Do You Find a Good Recruiter?

+-*The following article was originally posted on Tuesday, June 12, 2012 in The Globe And Mail. The question: How does one find a good recruiter? I need one! What can a recruiter do for you? What can you expect? How do you choose someone? How would the relationship proceed? How much does it cost? What information do you need to know before you go searching? The Answer: Recruiters can be a...

Shaky Credit History Won’t Cost You the Job

+-*The following article was originally posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 in The Globe And Mail. The question: I have a question pertaining to getting a job at a bank despite a shaky/credit record. I have just applied for a job with one of the a Big Five Canadian banks. It’s a back-end, process-optimization type of role so I wouldn’t be dealing with any of the bank’s clients. I am...

What Are the Best Career Opportunities For Helping Others?

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The question:

I am a recent graduate in the area of social services. I have a degree in social work and have some recent work experience in areas of individual counselling and employment-related counselling. Ideally I would love to find an entry-level career counselling position, however I have found this to be difficult. I was wondering if it would be...

Why Hiring Millennials Can Be Profitable

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I saw an article published in the Globe and Mail this month that generated a firestorm of polarizing comments — 1,351 (to date) to be specific. It was shared on Facebook over 1,000 times, and inspired 500...

How can I get experience if I can’t get a job?

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The scenario:

I am finding myself stuck in my job search. Every employer seems to want many years of work experience and, as a recent graduate, I just don't have this. It is extremely frustrating how narrow-minded many people seem to be about this. How are you supposed to get experience if no one gives you a chance? It doesn't seem to matter if you...

Three Lawyers Talk Online Profiling

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The Legal Implications of Checking Social Media Profiles

There’s been a lot of talk lately of employers asking candidates for passwords to access private social media profiles. Much of the buzz originated in the US, which got us thinking – what legal implications could there be in Canada for such an ask? So we approached three leading employment lawyers in Toronto and...

They Say I’m ‘Overqualified’ For an Entry-level Job

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The question:

I am an internationally trained human resources professional with over 10 years experience in Asia, with an electronics engineering education as well. I spent four years at an entry-level technical labour position after I immigrated to Canada in 2005. I went back to school in Canada and graduated with postgraduate certificate in human...

Would My Accountancy Credentials Give Me a Leg-up At a Bay Street Law Firm?

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The question

I am a CA (chartered accountant) and my friend is a CMA (certified management accountant). We are both senior accountants in our late 20s. We like our professions but it has been a dream of ours to work in corporate law; we figure it will be lucrative and our accounting/finance background will come in handy to Bay Street...

Finding The WOW Factor In Customer Service Candidates

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The following article was originally posted on Tuesday, April 3, 2012 on Workopolis.

Consider this scenario: an employee is...

How Can I Secure a Job In Canada While Living Abroad?

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The question

I have recently been granted the permanent resident status further to securing immigration under the skilled worker category in Canada...

This year while visiting Toronto for 20 days, I was able to meet three recruiters (very respected names in the financial services recruitment sector) and received a good response. They...

Proving ROI with Testing and Assessments

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Interview with Mark Fitzsimmons, President of Psychometrics Canada

Consider this: when hiring someone with an annual salary of $30,000, it can cost up to half of that, $15,000, to actually bring them on board. Moreover, the cost of losing an employee can cost up to three times their salary. So of...

How can I discover a new career that is right for me?

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The question:

The question I have had my own graphic design business since I was 18 and also worked in advertising for four years. Even though I am praised for my talents, and have moved up the ranks significantly in a short amount of time, I feel extremely bored and unfulfilled. For years my work has been easy, unfulfilling and boring. I just watch the time...

Candidate assessment: Can I trust my gut instinct?

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The following article was originally posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 on Workopolis.

Has this ever happened to you? You...

How to counter biases when interviewing

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In the HR and recruitment world, our business begins and ends with people. By nature, we know people cannot be truly objective. So this begs the question: can the hiring process ever be truly unbiased?

I contribute to the Globe and Mail careers section and was recently asked by a reader,

How do I handle personal questions at a job interview?

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The question:

What personal questions are employers legally allowed to ask a candidate during a job interview or on a job application? Recently, during a job interview at a hospital, the unit manager asked me if I was single. I answered honestly, but after wondered if that was even legally allowed. Later, while filing out the job application form for the...

Leverage your international experience to change direction

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The question:

I’m an international Canadian teacher and have been teaching history while living overseas with my family for the past five years. I’ve decided that I don’t want to teach any more. I’m passionate about law and business on the international stage and I’m driven to change my career path. I’m looking for a practical education to enter into a...

How to minimize attention-deficits in an “always-on” work world

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As people managers, we want our employees to be as focused, creative and productive as possible. In fact, today’s workforce often equates productivity to our multitasking prowess. I must admit, I pride myself on being a multitasker, and I expect my team to take on many tasks too.

 

So when I was reading a Harvard Business Review blog post the other day, “

7 telling interview questions

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Have you ever interviewed a candidate who talked a great talk, but didn’t end up cutting it in the actual job? Enthusiastic job seekers may be tempted to stretch the truth a little on past performances in hopes of leaving the best impression, so HR or a hiring manager’s greatest challenge is deciphering a candidate’s real ability and fit.

 

With limited face time...

Generation clash: Is having four generations in the workplace a liability or an asset?

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The workforce today has a unique dynamic—there are actually four distinct generations working together in most workplaces.

 

These groups are popularly referred to as the Mature generation (over the age of 65, also called silent, traditionalists or veterans), the Baby Boomers (aged 45-64), Generation X (aged 30-44),...

Demographic crunch, standout recruitment campaigns and reputation management

+-*BlueSky Personnel Solutions is sitting down with industry leader, Todd Humber, Managing Editor of the Canadian Reporter, the national journal of human resource management, to get his viewpoints on top-of-mind issues for HR professionals right now.

Top Interview Questions to Ask Candidates

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I am relatively new to the hiring process. What should I ask candidates, other than the usual questions about strengths, weaknesses, lessons learnt and what-kind-of-tree-would-you-be questions?

 

Generally speaking, no matter what position you are hiring for, there are two key things you want to determine during an interview: first, does this...

Examining HR Trends and Challenges with the HRPA

+-*Asking one of the leading experts in the human resources field, Claude Balthazard, Ph. D., CHRP, Vice-President, Regulatory Affairs and Registrar, Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA), about his take on what’s moving and shaking in the HR industry.