While Collecting Unemployment

In the last few weeks I have heard about two friends getting laid off.  I promised one that I would do some searching on my blog for some tips and here they are.  This is taken from a previous posting:

The Terrible Woes of Unemployment

Today I decided to look into what my benefits would be when I renewed my claim in a couple of weeks.  After talking to three different people on the unemployment hot line I was told three different stories about what extension I am on and about my eligibility.  In my last conversation I was told that my benefits may be reflective of what I have made in the last year.  I decided to look into this a little further and found an article about reduced unemployment rates due to working part-time.

So, basically here are the rules no one really talks about but you find out too late about:

* Don’t work more than 20 hours a week otherwise your unemployment will be taken away–> i.e. don’t work.

* Make sure if you do work you don’t make over 1/3 of your benefits, if you do it’ll just take away from your benefits.–>i.e. don’t work.

* DON’T WORK AT ALL, because if you do your new claim will be reflective of your new income while unemployed. However, if you don’t work at all you will receive the same amount as you did previously.

This is completely ridiculous.  All that unemployment encourages is for one to sit at home and do nothing unless a full time job actually comes their way. Had I known, I would have just sat here for the last year and done absolutely nothing.  What am I encouraged to do?  Find more part time work because clearly, my benefits will be slashed for working.  Thankfully, I’ve been saving money in case something like this may happen.  Now I may just need to start selling stuff on ebay.

What did you do today?

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Odd Marketing Techniques

This is a post about really odd and creepy marketing techniques.  A few weeks ago I received a letter at work.  The envelope just had a pair of 3-D glasses and a piece of paper that encouraged you to go on a website to find out what they were about.  Because the return address was similar to that of a salesman’s in our organization I decided to check it out.  Basically the link sent you to a site that encouraged you to use the glasses and at the end pitched a marketing company.  However, the minute you logged on, the end user must have received an e-mail and in turn e-mailed me back asking what I thought of the site.  Odd…

However, not as odd as the last envelope.  This one included the following items, a napkin, a key pass and a weblink.  I wasn’t the only one who received this but really? This is so odd and creepy!

Why would a marketing company go to this extreme?  What are they hoping to accomplish?

What did you do today?

Extreme Couponing

I am amazed at people who are extreme couponers.  Obviously I am envious of all of the savings they are able to rack up but I am also very perplexed.  Why do they need a stock pile of enough food items or detergent for over 10 years? 

I mean really?  What if you develop an allergy and can’t use that detergent?  What if that cereal your kids love is no longer coveted?

I know that this is a short post and completely my opinion, but I’m curious about your two cents on this phenomenon.

What did you do today?

Overusing Your E-Mail Signature

So you go on and create an appropriate and professional signature at work that ahs your name, title, address, any social media links and any kind of policy you might need to add.  Then comes the question, do you leave the signature on in every single e-mail you send out? 

I read an article a while back that stated that you definitely do not need to leave your signature on all the time, especially when you are emailing people you work with.  A) people know who you are, what you do, and the address B) leaving the signature on all the time might make it seem like you are full of yourself.

Now I don’t necessarily believe in point B but it is annoying sometimes especially when some people have made their signature so large that you have to scroll.  I do however believe in point A.  I try to just put my name when e-mailing colleagues, although there have been occasions when I’ve been asked to leave the signature on just so people who are on the road have all of my contact info in front of them.

What do you think about this?

What did you do today?

LinkedIn Expansion

LinkedIn has now expanded to the Japanese market, so what are you waiting for?  Clearly the site has its big thinking cap on and knows that in order to be useful to all professionals it needs to be global, and as Thomas Friedman wisely titled his book, “The World is Flat.”

So what does that mean for all of us?  It means that we need to get on the horse and update our profiles for the global market.  No, I don’t mean pepper in sections in various languages, although you can create your profile in various languages if you want to.  But what I’m talking about specifically is the ability of other professionals to find you easily when searching for key terms.

Make sure to highlight your accomplishments and rearrange your profile to showcase your global knowledge.  Make sure to stand out to the crowd by setting your profile up in a clean and concise manner.  Just as no one will read a 4 page resume, no one is going to scroll down to finally see your experience.  Organize, edit and succeed!

What did you do today?

What I learned by moving my blog

Well, the fear was always there and that’s why it took me so long to migrate my blog, albeit for only a little over a month.  I was always fearful that I would lose all of you, my loyal readers.  And I did.  Perhaps I should stick it out longer and figure out if I just need more time with my Business Casual Blog or if I did try but ultimately failed.

Here are my key takeaways from this experience:

1. When moving an already existing blog, or a website, make sure that people don’t go to the old place and then have to click on a link to get to your new domain.  Although this doesn’t seem like a big step, apparently it is.  People want things to be simple and clicking numerous times to new content ain’t it.  Make sure you have a direct redirect to your new landing page or site.  What I mean is, if someone types in ourunemployedlife.wordpress.com they are directly redirected to your new blog, in my case businesscasual365.com. 

2. When beginning any blog or website think in terms of long-term.  When I began blogging I wanted my blog to be an easily found, hence the url.  Later as I became employed I was at least able to change the title of the blog, but the url stayed the same.  I found myself to be in a pickle.  I’m no longer unemployed, I don’t want people to be confused and I certainly don’t want to mislead my readers.  So think in terms of long-term.  Where will you be several months or a year from now.  Will what fits now, fit you down the road?

3. Have a plan of attack.  When I migrated websites I didn’t really have a plan of attack.  I knew that the majority of my readers came from boston.com.  I reached out to the blog folks there and asked that my url get changed but didn’t hear back.  That was a major crux in my blogs demise.  If I had more time to plan I would advertise my new blog leading up to the change over.  However, as postings got stale and the reader numbers rarely surpassed 10 people I began to think that it’s time to come back to my roots and figure out a way to make the old blog work.

So there it is, three easy steps that I wish I had known about but I hope they’ll help you.  How would you feel if I changed the name of this current blog to Business Casual 365? 

What did you do today?

I’m Back!

Well folks, what can I say, I tried it.  I tried starting a new true blog but my worst fears came true, nobody followed.  Well maybe a handful of you did, thank you mom, but none the less.  So I’m back.  This is my home, this is my baby blog and I can’t deny it so I’m migrating my new ideas back here. 

What have I been up to?  Well, The last blog wasn’t as much of an inspirational space as I thought it might be.  I was mostly pulling tried and true posts from here which I would like to bring back up from time to time but other than that I wasn’t any more inspired to write there than I was on here for a while.  I must have just hit a slump in blogging and nothing could get me out. 

I have been blogging though.  I joined a site called www.bridalbuds.com and am blogging to my little hearts content about all things wedding related.  I went on vacation to Riga, Latvia with my fiancée and now it’s back to the real world.  Life otherwise has been going well and I’m still loving my job. 

So as I get back to blogging for all of you again I want to thank you for your support and for reading my blog. 

What did YOU do today?