3 takeaways from the latest jobs report

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For the entire ZipRecruiter story by Julia Pollak, see Courierpostonline Sunday, April 4, 2021.

According to a recent jobs report released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the economy added 379,000 jobs in February, beating expectations.  That is a significant improvement over January, when the economy added only 166,000. It is also about twice the average monthly job gain before the pandemic.

Nevertheless, given that the economy is still down 9.5 million jobs since earlier this year — and 11.9 million jobs below its healthy pre-Covid-19 trend — the job gains should be seen as fairly modest. They do not yet signal a rapid rebound, but rather the slow reawakening if the labor market after the Covid-19 winter.

Here are some key takeaways from the report.

1. The leisure and hospitality sector is finally reviving

2. Very few workers returned to the labor market

3. State and local government education was the weak point of the report

Again, get the full story in the April 4, 2021 edition of Courierpostonline.com

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Tips to Succeed: View your failures as a learning experience – or – turning a stumbling block into a stepping stone

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“What’s the key to being a successful entrepreneur?” Change how you
think about failure.

Failure is the “F word” of business – It’s not polite to mention it. After
all, failure is what happens to other people, right? But what happens when
we ourselves fail? We either try to quickly forget the experience, or we
wallow in self-doubt and recrimination.

If you’re in business, sooner or later, you’re going to have failures. But
sometimes, these “failures” can turn out to be fortunate. They force you to
re-examine your goals, decisions, methods. Then, you can choose to take a
different – better – path.

Here’s how the best entrepreneurs deal with failure:
• Redefine it. Experienced entrepreneurs make a failure a learning

• Analyze it. If – when – you fail, take a close look at the causes. After each
and every setback, big or small, take a clear cold look at what happened.

• Depersonalize it. Stop kicking yourself; everybody fails. While you must
analyze your mistakes, you won’t learn anything if you’re too busy
beating up on yourself.

• Change it. Remind yourself of what you learned and actively try to
change your behavior. Be patient and forgiving because change takes

• Get over it. Move on. Don’t dwell on your successes or on your failures.
You’ve got a life to live, and each day is precious. So, like the old song
says, ”Pick yourself up, brush yourself off, and start all over again.”
Rhonda Abrams – www.rhondaworks.com

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Simply, it is getting away from school for a few days. As one parent said, we must do it during Covid-19. “The kids have been locked up in the house since March 2020. They are losing out on all social aspects of being in school and a lot of the fun parts of it,” Judy DeJohn of Montgomery Township, Somerset County, N.J. She spoke to Celeste E. Whittaker of the Courier-Post.

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Great Careers for Veterans

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From ZipRecruiter and The Courier-Post:

  1. Security Guard
  2. Emergency Medical Technician
  3. Computer Support Technician
  4. Truck Driver
  5. Supply Chain Manager
  6. Project Manager
  7. Sales Representative

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11 Ways To Help Manage Your Year-End Stress

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From Dale Carnegie Training Newsletter

By Anita Zinsmeister, President

Dale Carnegie Training of Central and Southern New Jersey

With the holidays right around the corner, they can frequently bring stress from year-end projects, annual reviews, shopping, cooking, and travel plans. In fact, a poll by the American Psychological Association shows that 8 out of 10 people anticipate increased stress over the holidays.

11 Ways To Help You Manage Year-End Stress.

1. Set Attainable Goals – You have to be honest with yourself about your projects and to-do list. Let’s say you have a project due for a client, but you need information from them. To help address the management of something, develop a timetable that manages all action items.

2. Manage Your Budget/Expenses – Holidays can put a lot of stress on your budget due to gifts, luncheons, and dinners. Since holiday bonuses are not a guarantee, you should try to live within your current salary/income. Before spending money you don’t have, you should create a holiday budget.

3. Eat Smart And Sleep Well – Many people have used most of their vacation time, especially at companies that do not allow employees to carry vacation time over to the following year. Additionally, over-committing to holiday events and eating those holiday treats quickly leads to a lack of sleep and weight gain. Combat that trend by eating healthy and finding time to recharge your batteries.

4. Physical Activity – With life getting busy and days feeling shorter, it is easy to not take care of yourself. However, a bit of activity can help you keep extra weight off and reduce stress, even if you only have time for a 15-minute walk during lunch.

5. Better Time Management – We all have things that need to be done by year-end, from holiday shopping, visiting friends to connecting with clients and co-workers. If you want to stay ahead of your stress level, it’s best to address them BEFORE they are due.

6. Address How You Are Feeling – Feeling overwhelmed by the amount of work you need to complete by year-end is natural. Although this feeling is quite common for many of us, it might be helpful if you confide in a family member, friend, or co-worker to unload these feelings.

7. Volunteer Your Time Or Make A Donation – Everyone gets the holiday blues, but helping others is a great way to relieve stress and just feel better. If you find that you and/or your organization has some discretionary funding available, it might be helpful to spend it on a cause that you feel is important.

8. Socialize With Your Co-Workers – Most of your co-workers are probably feeling the holiday stress, too. To combat holiday stress, do something fun like a simple holiday gift exchange or luncheon even if it is over Zoom.

9. Relax – Don’t forget to take some time to yourself and do something relaxing. Are you interested in reading, yoga, or tinkering? Make time for your hobby to help get rid of your stress.

10. Maintain A Sense Of Humor – It’s easy to forget to laugh during the holiday season with so much work to get done and so many things to prepare. Take a laugh break. Look up some holiday jokes on Google and share them with others.

11. Plan Ahead – The holidays are incredibly hectic. However, you can reduce your stress by planning ahead. Instead of simply marking off events such as “family dinner party,” plan out your preparation by scheduling time to “shop for tomorrow’s family dinner party.”

Key Points:

·       The proper planning will go a long way to help reduce your stress.

·       Limit your food and alcohol intake during the holiday and always make your last few drinks water.

·       At the end of each day (or the start of one), take some time for reflection.

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5 Ways To Help Your Team Feel Appreciated When Working Remotely

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Dale Carnegie Training Newsletter
By: Anita Zinsmeister, President
Dale Carnegie® Training of Central & Southern New Jersey
Employee engagement increases in companies that have strong teams. Likewise, a competent team can singlehandedly cut operating costs and reduce the amount of workplace stress.  A team that communicates frequently develops skills that lessen the chance of mistakes that are typically the result of a disjointed team.
5 Tips To Help Create A More Effective Remote Team
1. Empower Your Team Members – Encourage your team members to be self-managed and a contributing member to the team. Doing so will boost their productivity; however, you do have to encourage and monitor your staff by assigning specific responsibilities and due dates.  Doing so will help promote and foster a culture that harnesses forward-thinking strategies and generates results.
2. Ask Everyone For Their Opinion – An “open-door policy” isn’t compelling enough at soliciting frequent feedback from your team.  Establish a system for generating direct and candid feedback.  Furthermore, when evaluating your employees, promote an environment of positive discussion by communicating in a clear and focused manner. To help augment the opinion process, set up a brief meeting with all team members to get their opinion on what is and isn’t working.  Additionally, it might also make sense to have individual meetings to help better solicit each member’s opinion. 
3. Get Your People To Buy Into A Team – Team members should understand that the success of their individual career is tied directly to the trajectory of the group and company.  Team-building exercises are great opportunities for every member to feel included and valued. Encourage team members by complimenting positive examples of teamwork as you see them happen.  A team is most effective when it acts as a united front, and every member should be supported, so they feel like they are part of the team.
4. Focus On Efficient Execution – Consider the structure of your organization before your team-building exercise commences.  Large teams might need to arrange a central leadership team to make planning and execution more manageable.  Each sub-team requires equal time, treatment, and resources.  Monitor each team to make sure no one person is taking on too much control, responsibility, or the feeling of being overwhelmed.
5. Conduct Team Building Activities – Remote team-building activities are great ways to build camaraderie between employees.  As you introduce a team-building activity, structure, or exercise to your employees, be sure to include the expectation for the activity.  Not only should you explain the rules of the exercise, but you should also provide team members with the goal they should achieve.
Executive Summary:  A strong team works more effectively and efficiently — all in an effort to increase productivity and results.  The key to encouraging individuals to operate as a team typically comes down to healthy communication.  Make your expectations known and promote direct and candid feedback from team members.  Empower your team by putting them in a position to succeed and encourage everyone to take part in problem-solving to encourage positive attitudes and results. 

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Advice from ‘The PR Playbook’

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A tip to succeed: “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”

Check out Larry Litwin’s The Public Relations Practitioner’s Playbook for (all) Strategic Communicators. It is available from Amazon or Authorhouse Publishing.

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Small biz ideas you can start from home

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As Steve Nicastro of Nerdwallet.com writes: (See the full story in Sunday’s (Aug. 30, 2020 Courier-Post)

Here are a few ideas for small businesses that can be run from home:

If you are a wordsmith

1. Blogger

2. Resume writer

If you love animals

3. Pet sitting or walking

4. Gourmet dog treats

5. Mobile pet grooming

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Some small-biz ideas en route to entrepreneurship

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From the Aug. 23 edition of the Courier-Post  and Steve Nicastro of ziprecruiter.com comes these suggestions:

If you are handy:

  1. Start a general handyman business
    1. Get into appliance repair                                                                                                                  If you are tech-savvy:                                                                                                            3. Smartphone repair                                                                                                                 4. Web development

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So, you want to stay in the workforce after ‘retirement’

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As Kate Lopaze writes for thejobnetwork.com the average retirement age is 65 for men and 63 for women. Almost half are still working or looking for work. Here are some jobs retirees should explore:

  • Bookkeeper/accounting clerk
  • Project-based consultant
  • Adjunct professor
  • Crossing guard
  • Real estate agent

Comments or questions? larry@larrylitwin.com