Rookie to All-Star in 5 Steps

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Starting a new job is an exciting yet nerve-wracking process. There’s an enormous amount of information to absorb, standard policies and procedures to digest, and office dynamics to navigate. As a new employee, you’re eager to impress and also energized about the new opportunity. But, who orders coffee when the kitchen is out? How do you look up a client’s contact information in the system? What do you do when a client asks a question you simply don’t know the answer to yet? Transitioning from the new guy to the stellar employee is a daunting task. As a recruiter, I see this daily in the candidates I place at offices across industries. As a newer recruiter myself, I’ve also grappled with this same dilemma. Here are some strategies that will help you navigate the first few months gracefully.

1. Figure it out. It’s your third week on the job, you’re trucking along, and then you hit a speed bump. You have no idea what to do next. Instead of leaning over to the person next to you, try your best to figure it out. This is where critical thinking skills and good judgment come into play. Is it a game changing decision? Don’t make the call. Does it involve some extra steps and potentially insignificant mistakes? Try your best to work it out. Then clarify what you did at a later time.

2. Consolidate your questions. Don’t lose sight of the fact that other people in your office have a full desk. Although it’s tempting to buzz your teammate or your supervisor with each question, you’re interrupting their work flow. The best way to handle your inquiries is to compile a list of several questions and then email the person who can answer these questions asking for a good time to meet. This approach allows the seasoned employee to designate a specific time for you and also uses that time efficiently by addressing several issues at once.

3. Admit you made a mistake. It’s not an easy situation when you’ve done something incorrectly, especially if it has cost the company money or resulted in a major inconvenience. Instead of being insecure about your error, ‘fess up and ask how to do it correctly next time. If you can fix it yourself, do so. You may encounter some awkward conversations with clients or add more work to your plate, but it’s far more respectable than a white lie no one believes anyway. You’re not expected to be an expert at your new job, but you are expected to be learning.

4. Seek out mentoring opportunities. Did someone mention a particularly strenuous task in the staff meeting? Find an opportunity to discuss the issue with them and learn more about the problem and how they handled it. Is someone going to grab coffee for the office? Ask if you can tag along to assist and use that opportunity to pick their brain a bit. Complacency is your worst enemy. Regardless of how much experience you have in similar roles, you need to be proactive.

5. Relax. Your new company has invested in you because they’re confident in the value you bring to the table. If you’re feeling incompetent and like a burden, don’t stress – of course you are! You’re largely inefficient and bumbling at this point. Be patient with those who are training you. And just to make it complicated: be patient, but don’t be a doormat. You were chosen from a pool of applicants to fill this role successfully – not to be a punching bag. Be confident!

The hardest part of this entire process is over. You got the job! The next several months will include a lot of successes as well as a lot of blundering mishaps. The best thing to do is accept that you will make mistakes and make every effort to learn your new role inside and out. Your office will appreciate your willingness to immerse yourself in the job and appreciate your attitude along the way.

Finally, don’t forget what it’s like to be the new guy. Soon enough, you’ll surrender the title to a new bright-eyed and nervous employee who is trying desperately to find extra pens in the stock room. Take this opportunity to be a resource for this person. You’ll continue to impress your boss and elicit some good karma along the way.

What are your tips for starting a new job off right? Comment below.

Written by: Hannah BarfieldHannah

Hannah Barfield is Godshall’s newest Healthcare Recruiter. In her role, Hannah works to fulfill the open positions with Godshall’s healthcare clients. Hannah has extensive experience in the healthcare industry. She began her career as a therapist in a community mental health center. Hannah has been published in The Journal of Career Counseling, The Family Journal, and Counseling Theory: Guided and Reflexive Practice. Hannah is a graduate of the University of Georgia and graduated with a Master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Clemson University. She is currently a member of the Junior League of Greenville.

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The Power of a Thank You Note

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            Despite living in a technology driven world, the effort of a hand written thank you note should not become a lost art! I am sure you grew up hearing the phrase “it is the small things that make a difference” and that remains true in the post interview process as well. While a thank you note sent via email is certainly acceptable, a handwritten note (and its contents) can set you apart from other candidates. It is not a time consuming effort, yet can have a huge reward!
             As a seasoned recruiter, I have witnessed multiple success stories where a thank you note was the GAME CHANGER! In 2011, I had several candidates interview for a Director of Marketing position. After receiving the client’s feedback at the end of the day, they decided not to pursue one of the candidates because he did not have enough industry specific experience—or so they thought. Within 48 hours, the client received a thank you note that made them rethink the entire interview and marketing strategy for their organization. The note was far more detailed than just thanking the interviewer for their time; it was thought provoking and meaningful. It not only expressed his excitement in taking on the challenge, but it addressed his specific plan to impact the company branding strategy, staff development and community relationships to drive business and increase their bottom line. After receiving this note, the client could not help but bring him back for a 2nd interview which resulted in a job offer on the spot. That very thank you note proved to be worth $60,000!
           It is common courtesy to acknowledge someone’s time. Because so many people fail to send a thank you note, it truly can set you apart! A thank you letter gives you the chance to highlight your specific skills and integrate those skills into their organization. It also allows you to touch on any key points you may have forgotten during the actual interview, respond to any objections, address any challenges and show off your written communication skills. In today’s market, you cannot afford to have a generic resume. In turn, a generic thank you note is no longer good enough either. It needs to be customized to the interviewer and reflect a personal touch!
             Always remember that the interview process does not end when you leave the building. Do not lose sight of the power that a thank you note has. It could actually be the small post interview effort that opens the door to your new career!

Written by: Cathy BoggsCathy Boggs

Cathy is a Greenville native and Clemson graduate with a BS in Business Management.  She has over 15 years of experience with Godshall specializing in banking, finance and professional placements.  Prior to joining Godshall, she worked for an international retailer in human resources.  She is married to a West Virginia Mountaineer that will never let her live down the loss of the 2012 Orange Bowl.  She has 2 adorable sons, ages 4 and 7, that she is raising to love the color orange!

Lions and tigers and PUBLIC SPEAKING…oh my!

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Are you dreading that looming date on your calendar when you have to address a crowd via a presentation, speech or introduction of an esteemed colleague? Public speaking can be daunting, nerve-wracking and downright scary. My first major public speaking experience was trial–by-fire where I had to address a group of 100 Wall Street law firm partners in a ten minute presentation, with my boss sitting right beside me! As time went by and I addressed different groups of colleagues in different formats including training programs and cocktail party welcoming addresses, I slowly grew more comfortable up at the podium. Below are a few tips that helped me along the way:

Prepare. Write down the major ideas you want to convey in a bullet point format. Don’t write down everything word-for-word, as you will be more tempted to read it verbatim and not make eye contact with your audience.

Practice makes perfect. Go into an empty conference room and run through it five or six times. Make sure you are standing up! My jitters are always more manageable when I can address a group while sitting down, but if you will be standing, be sure to stand while you are practicing. Doing a run-through with your notes will help you get comfortable presenting the material by ad-libbing, since you don’t have a formal script written out.

Execute with eye contact. Once you’ve practiced and are comfortable conveying the information off the cuff, you are ready! Bring your notes with you to soothe those jitters. As you are speaking, find a friend or colleague in the audience to be your go-to person for eye contact. Then move about the crowd, focusing on someone for three seconds then moving to someone else. This will help you from locking eyes with the empty wall at the back of the room, or scanning the room so quickly that you aren’t really focusing on anyone.

Lastly, stand up straight, smile and breathe. You’ve got this!

Written by: Courtney Mebane

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Courtney has nearly ten years of recruiting experience, most of which has been in the legal field. Prior to joining Godshall in 2014, she was involved in recruiting attorneys for the Charlotte office of a Wall Street law firm. In addition to recruiting, she also launched and managed the firm’s alumni communications program. Courtney holds a Bachelors of Business Administration in Marketing from Southern Methodist University and loves spending time at home with her family and rescued beagle mix.

How to Land Your First Job in Healthcare and Keep It

Congratulations! You’ve landed your first healthcare job. You feel like a rock star. You’ve got the skills, personality and professionalism that your employer wanted, but any savvy employee knows that landing the job is only the beginning. Now you have to keep the job! A few tips to ensure success:

1.      Your Office Hours Are Not 8:07am-­4:59pm

 Be on time. It sounds so simple, yet everyday good employees get terminated for this very infraction. How embarrassing to lose your shiny new job because you are consistently five minutes late! It doesn’t matter that you work late to make it up. It is your responsibility to be on time, and once you’ve lost a job for tardiness, it makes you less desirable to be hired again.

2.      Gold Stars

 Show initiative! Employers love this. If you finish your work early, ask for more to do. You’ll look like the superstar you are. Pitching in where needed is in everyone’s job description.

3.       Have I Told You About the Time…

 You were smart and kept the personal information to a minimum in the interview. Now that you’ve got the job, the same rules apply and even more so. Stay away from office drama.  You are there to work and work only.

4.      Can You Help Me With My Boxes?

 Don’t move in. A photo, nice pens and a plant are fine if you have a desk or work area, but don’t bring everything from your home into your work area.

5.      Mom, Can We Have Pizza for Dinner?

 Keep your cell phone off and personal calls to a minimum. If your cell phone must be on for emergencies, have it on vibrate or silent mode and return calls only on breaks or at lunch. Train your friends and family to know that calling you during work hours is only for emergencies. Texting is also a growing concern in business settings. Texting while driving can wreck your car, and texting while working can wreck your job.

 6.      Training Day

 Many new employees complain that they get limited training when they begin a job. Unfortunately, in today’s fast paced medical offices this is quite possibly true. Take notes, ask smart questions and ask for feedback early on. If your manager doesn’t officially match you up with a seasoned employee as a mentor, take notice of who stands out as an exemplary employee and model their behavior. You can learn an enormous amount of valuable information in the first two weeks of a new job just by keeping quiet and observing.

7.       Big Brother is Watching

 No internet surfing—checking emails, Facebook, shopping sites and job boards are not for work hours, and many employers can easily track your every move on the computer. Do  you really want to tell your next employer that you were terminated in your last job because you were updating your status on Facebook?

It is a competitive market right now. Hiring officials want the best possible clinical and clerical staff for their medical offices. With these easy tips, you are well on your way to landing the healthcare job of your dreams and keeping it!

Written by: Karen Truesdale

Karen TruesdaleKaren Truesdale is celebrating her 12th year with Godshall this summer. She manages the support operations for the office as well as all the medical credentialing for Godshall’s healthcare employees. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Wofford College and a Master of Elementary Education from Converse College. She is an avid animal lover and movie/entertainment trivia buff.