Category Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Personal Development Portfolio

June 28, 2007 0 comments

The Personal Development Portfolio is designed to help you get the most value out of your placement work experience.

The goal of this information is to help you to find a first work placement and develop self-reliance skills

  • To introduce you experience based learning techniques
  • To develop further knowledge and understanding of the management functions and skills
  • To develop team working skills

To develop knowledge and appreciation of statistical inference in business and management

The following topics will be illustrated:

"Presentation_Guidelines <>"_

Introduction and Self-reliance Skills - Exploring self-reliance

Self-awareness; Self-promotion - Supervised Work Experience

"Curriculum Vitae <>"_ - Opportunities and Networking

"Action Planning and Decision-making <>"_ - Cover Letters and Interview Skills

"Development Focus <>"_ - Job Search Plan

Business Games

"Team Working <>"_

"Organizing <>"_




Tasks Action Plan

  • Record of Work - a summary of your work profile
  • Reflective Learning - a diary about your day-to-day duties
  • Developing your Skills - Self Appraisal of competencies and discussions with your colleagues or Supervisor

Presentation Outcome of your Portfolio

  • Legibility - All entries should be clear and comprehensible
  • Layout - Diary entries and the summary work record should be clearly laid out and orderly
  • Condition - The portfolio should be intact and in good condition throughout

The Content of Your Portfolio

  • Completeness- All tasks completed in a conscientious and professional way
  • Relevance- Work record and diary entries relevant to learning aims
  • Consistency - Logical relationship between entries in work record, diary entries, assessment profile and improvement strategies
  • Integrity - Evidence of input from Industrial Supervisor

Training Record

Record details of any training you are given by your employer

This training may take the form of in-house courses or courses delivered by external consultants contracted specially for the purpose.

Please, indicate a date, course title, short description and the name and title of a person who delivered it.

Your Induction Checklist

The following items should be included in your induction into the organization, preferably on your first day.

Please check off the items below when they occur and discuss with your Industrial Supervisor any items not covered within 1 week of the start of your placement. This list is not exhaustive and other topics may be covered which you may note if you wish.


Introduced to key staff members and their roles explained

  • Location of toilet facilities
  • Lunch, tea and coffee arrangements<
  • Place of work
  • Dress code
  • Work space
  • How to answer the telephone, transfer calls and make calls both internally and externally
  • Post arrangements
  • Car Parking

Health and Safety Issues

  • Emergency Procedures
  • Safety policy received or location known
  • Location of First Aid box
  • Fire procedures and location of fire extinguishers
  • Accident reporting and location of accident book
  • Display Screen Equipment regulations/procedures
  • Manual handling procedures
  • Protective clothing arrangements
  • Instruction on equipment you will be using
  • Other issues

Tasks - Record of Work and Reflective Learning

Key aspects of Supervised Work Experience are (i) the actual jobs you do in the placement and (ii) what you learn while doing the job.

The aim of this task if therefore two-fold - to provide you, for future reference, with a structured record of the job and to encourage your thinking about the work (reflection) to promote your learning.

The Job

When you record work activities on the Work Record sheets, first of all, you might want to record the activities or jobs in some detail. However, as the placement progresses you will want to use abbreviations or your own shorthand to record the jobs which are by then more familiar to you. At the end of the placement you are required to summaries the range and nature of the jobs you have done and to show approximately how much time you have spent doing each type of job.

The Learning

You are to use the Diary pages to record your observations and experiences e.g. how you felt about certain jobs or parts of jobs, whether you enjoyed doing particular jobs, were indifferent to them or hated them!

Clearly, observations and experiences are only worthwhile if you learn something from them, so be sure to identify the learning for each set of observations or experiences you decide to record in your diary.

You should enter in your diary the observations and experiences relating to the learning aims are set out below:

  • to develop your personal and interpersonal skills and to improve your knowledge and understanding of the management functions;
  • to develop further knowledge and understanding of the business functions and of how they are integrated within the business organization.

These diary entries are to help you reflect on particular parts of the work so that you can identify why things went right or went wrong and what actions or behaviors should be adopted in the future to achieve successful enjoyable outcomes.

Whenever you can, use your placement as a source of data and information:

Prepare a document on "Reflections on improving personal and interpersonal skills with reference to your experiences at (organization)"

Identify a business/management problem/issue within the host organization, undertake a limited investigation of it and prepare a management report which outlines the topic, the methods used to investigate the topic and a discussion of the findings.


Hannagan, T (1998) Management Concepts and Practices, 1nd ed., Pitman Publishing. Turya, E (1992) Write them right:, Schelmsford, Beihireyo Books

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Your Assessment Profile

June 28, 2007 0 comments










A.  Appearance

Appropriately dressed.  Business-like.

B.  Enthusiasm

Keen and lively interest towards work and the organization.

C.  Self-discipline

Ability to control behavior as appropriate.

D.  Self-confidence

Confidence in own powers and judgment.  Assured.

E.  Integrity

Overall reliability, consistency and trustworthiness.  Ethical norms.

Interpersonal Skills








A.  Oral Communication

Effectiveness of expression in individual or group situations.

B.  Written Communication

Ability to express ideas clearly in writing in good grammatical form.

C.  Listening Ability

Ability to pick out important information in oral communications.

D.  Interpersonal Sensitivity

Awareness and empathy with the needs and feelings of other people.









A.  Self-Motivation

High need to achieve success.

B.  Commitment

Belief in own job or role and its value to the organization.  Gives maximum effort.

C.  Initiative

Actively influencing events rather than passively accepting; sees opportunities.  Originates action.

Intellectual Ability








A.  Problem Analysis

Effectiveness in identifying problems, seeking pertinent data and finding possible solutions.

B.  Judgement

To reach the best conclusions from available information.

C.  Creativity

Ability to come up with imaginative solutions in business situations.  Innovative.

Managerial Ability








A.  Leadership

Displays leadership characteristics.  Ability to develop teamwork.

B.  Planning and Organising

Ability to establish efficiently an appropriate course of action for self and others to accomplish goal.

C.  Organisational Sensitivity

Capacity to perceive the impact and implications of decisions and activities on others.

D.  Management Identification

Ability to identify readily with and to accept the concerns and problems of management.

1 = low

5 = high












Supervisor’s Comments


Interpersonal Skills


Intellectual Ability

Managerial Ability


Assessment Guidelines

Average Area score of less than 2:

Considerable improvement needs to be made. You should consult with your Industrial Supervisor and discuss your personal improvement strategies with your Academic Supervisor.

Average Area score of 2 to 3:

Clearly some room for improvement! Focus on developing the areas which are most important to the successful completion of your placement work.

Average Area score of 3 to 4:

About average performance. Good! Can you improve further? Delight the customer?

Average Area score of 4 to 5:


Improvement Strategies

 Resources Action Target Date

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio


June 28, 2007 0 comments

Action to be taken in an emergency

Because of the wide variety of work that is carried out and the possible complex layout of the various buildings, it is not possible to produce a set of valid and detailed emergency instructions to cover every situation that may arise. For this reason, each employer has its own emergency instructions relating to particular buildings. There should be in every building a notice setting out the procedure to be adopted in case of fire.

This instruction should be studied and committed to memory.

There are certain points that apply to all emergency situations:

  • You should commit to memory the standing orders for emergency action. You will have not time to read them in an emergency
  • Remember: you are expected to act in the spirit of the instructions. There is no substitute for common sense
  • The most important consideration at all times is human safety
  • Remember: if you become a casualty someone must rescue you, possibly at personal risk to themselves
  • You should act quietly and methodically. You should not rush or attempt to pass others when leaving the scene of an emergency
  • The senior person present should assume control of the situation, ensuring the safe evacuation from the premises of all persons present and be prepared to warn the Emergency Services etc., of all known specific hazards

If you have to telephone for assistance in an emergency, the following information must always be given:

  • Who you are
  • Where you are: i.e. the location and telephone extension from which you are telephoning
  • The nature of the emergency and what services are required
  • The exact location where assistance is required.

You should ensure that the message has been correctly received by asking for it to be repeated back to you.

It is essential that the location be clearly defined. Local terminology should not be used because for instance, "the research site" means very little to the Emergency Services.

It is important always to give the correct name for the building and the street where it is located. If the postcode is known that should also be provided.

General duties of employers

  • Employers are required, as far as reasonably practicable, to:
  • Ensure the health and safety and welfare of employees
  • Provide safe plant and systems of work
  • Ensure safe use, handling, storage and transport of articles and substances
  • Provide information, instruction, training and supervision</li><li>Maintain a safe place of work and safe means of access and egress.

General duties of employers to employees

The effect is to make criminally enforceable the common law duty to take reasonable care for the safety of employees. This includes the requirement, as far as reasonably practicable, to ensure:

  • Employees know the risks
  • Employees know the precautions
  • The precautions are available
  • Employees know the precautions available.

General duties of employers to persons other than employees

Employers have a general duty to protect anyone affected by the undertaking e.g. the general public. Regulations:

  • Require information to be given to persons affected e.g. living near the plant
  • Prescribe situations regarding emission of fumes, smoke etc.
  • Place duties on persons in control of premises in relation to harmful emissions into the atmosphere.

Duties towards the customer

Duties of those who design, manufacture, import or supply and install articles or substances are to:

  • Ensure that they are safe and without risk to health
  • Carry out tests, examination and research (or have it done on their behalf)
  • Provide adequate information regarding proper use, maintenance etc.
  • Install or erect plant and equipment safely.

The duties can be relieved by a written undertaking from the supplier that he/she will take the steps to ensure that the article or substance will be safe in use or while being cleaned, maintained etc.

Duties of employees

No levy on employees is permitted for the provision of statutory protective equipment. Employees must:

  • Take reasonable care for themselves and others
  • Co-operate with the employer and use safety appliances
  • Not recklessly and willfully interfere with safety appliances.

General Safety

The prevention of accidents in laboratories, stores, workshops and all other places of work are a duty of every individual using or entering them. Ensuring the safety of others is as important as the avoidance of personal injury.

Everyone should make it his or her first task to become familiar with any special instructions issued for dealing with emergencies peculiar to the place in which he or she is working.

General safety issues

Eating, drinking, smoking and the application of make-up in laboratories or when handling or working with chemicals is prohibited. Smoking may also be prohibited in many other areas as well.

You should familiarize yourself with:

  • The layout of the building
  • The location of fire-fighting appliances and how they work
  • Ways to get out of the building in an emergency, which may be different to the way you came in</li><li>The siting of telephones, and
  • First aid arrangements.

Remember: it may be too late to find out very much when an emergency actually happens.

If you have any queries on safety matters: consult your supervisor or safety representative.

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio


June 28, 2007 0 comments

Questions you have to answer:

  • Which section(s) or department(s) did you work in?
  • Who was your Industrial Supervisor or main person to whom you were responsible?
  • Were you given an induction program to help you in the first few days of the placement?
  • Were you given training courses at any time during the placement?
  • Was your progress discussed with your Industrial Supervisor as often as you would have liked?
  • What were the 4 tasks which you spent most time on?
  • What were the main responsibilities you were given?
  • Did you work on your own? How much team working did you do?
  • Did you use IT? What software, hardware?
  • What were the wages?
  • Any bonus?
  • Did you get a holiday entitlement?
  • Facilities (e.g. restaurant, sport, social, etc.)
  • Was accommodation adequate?
  • Any financial or practical drawbacks to the placement?
  • What skills and knowledge from University (College) Courses did you use?
  • What skills and knowledge did you acquire on placement?
  • Are there any skills/knowledge which you would have preferred to have gained from your University (College) courses before going on placement?
  • Final reflections on the placement? Will you consider an offer of this placement (Internship)with your employer organization?

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Project Portfolio

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Your project portfolio should contain the four components:

  • An analysis of your own strengths and weaknesses
  • A CV typed up and ready for use
  • A logically formulated job search plan clearly set out with targets and deadlines
  • A copy of each of the cover letters sent out to potential employers and notes giving the background details upon which you based the cover letter, along with the potential employers' replies.

Once you have secured a placement there is no need to add any further cover letters to your portfolio.

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Skills Set

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Early identification of need : ”delayering”, ”down-sizing” (re-sizing) and “business re-engineering” have lead to leaner more efficient organizations with greater responsibility passed down the structure, the need for teamwork, better “people” skills and IT Literacy. Dr Peter Hawkins of Liverpool University concludes that the complete graduate needs four types of skills:

SPECIALIST: it helps to be an expert at something (e.g. programming, marketing; tax planning; family law)

GENERALIST: must have general business skills and knowledge;

CONNECTED: must be team players (e.g. meeting skills, negotiation skills, networking skills);

SELF-RELIANT: must be able to manage their career and personal development (e.g. confidence, self-awareness; action planning; political awareness).

Holbeche(1997) considers ”what seems to be emerging is the idea that a career will involve more lateral than vertical moves; that it will be characterized by constant learning and development of skills and competence and that employees will be primarily responsible for managing their own careers”.

Bridges, quoted in Holbeche (1997), considers that jobs as we know them will cease to exist – that society will become “de-jobbed”. The only way to survive is to look at yourself as if you were self-employed.

The “new” self-reliance skills are necessary to enable people to manage the processes of career progression and effective learning” since the traditional career ladder and job for life has disappeared. Other academics, practitioners in the careers field, and the Government all identify similar skills required by graduates for the new careers of the 21st century.


“The Self-Reliant Graduate is aware of the changing world of work, takes responsibility for his or her own career and personal development and is able to manage the relationship with work and with learning throughout all stages of life”.

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Personal Inventory

June 28, 2007 0 comments

By preparing your Personal Inventory and Strengths and Weaknesses Statements, you improve your self awareness

It is important that you have the ability to identify skills, values, interests, strengths and differentiating factors; have evidence of achievements etc.; are proactive in seeking feedback; able to identify areas for personal, academic and professional development.

Personal Inventory should consist of:

  • Skills
  • Values
  • Interests
  • Core Strengths
  • Other Personal Attributes
  • Weaknesses
  • Areas for Personal Development

Specific skills:

Such as accounting, IT, marketing etc which employers might seek.

List learning outcomes of modules taught and rate how “good” you are at these “basic, intermediate advanced” or record the length of time you have been using and practicing these skills.

Personal Transferable skills:

These are transferable between jobs of different types.

Examples include communication skills, interpersonal skills, team working skills, organizing skills, leadership skills, adaptability , willingness and ability to learn, self-motivation , self discipline.

Think about the big events in your life specific achievements, awards obtained, work experience, travel adventures responsibilities held etc. Reflect on each and identify the skills acquired/ utilized/ developed.


What do you prize, esteem, appreciate?


Skills, attributes which are your most developed/expert. (who says?, testimonies?, references?)


Attributes you are aware are not as well developed as you would like and which represent areas for personal development.

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Creating a Curriculum Vitae

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Drafting CV will improve your self promotion skills Your Personal Inventory can be used to develop a CV.

In CV you recall constituent parts of a Personal Inventory:

Skills, Values, Interests, Core Strengths, Other Personal Attributes, Weaknesses, Areas for Personal Development.

You should be aware of the structural differences between conventional and skills-based CVs

Which CV is best if you know the details of skills required to do the job?

Which CV is best if application is cold?

How does the Personal Inventory help in the preparation of both types of CV?

Assume that you have registered with an agency to help you find a specific Placement employment and you have now to prepare a CV for them.

Which type of CV will you use?

Try to get the structure and key points right

Swap with a colleague and apply the "arms" length test;

Raise points about layout and content with your friends. Listen to their suggestions

Complete the CV. You Can look at your CV later and improve over time.

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Writing a Cover Letter

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Draft a Cover Letter for cold approaches

Show an understanding of the recruitment process and standard interview structure from the interviewer's perspective.

Cold approach and general rules of letter writing

For example, you are applying for a position of a production manager in a large electronics company based in Los Angeles.

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Job Search Plan

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Prepare a Job Search Plan (1) to improve action planning skills and (2)to improve decision-making skills.

Show an understanding of the difficulty in dealing with trade-offs in a time sensitive situation.


Recap on nature of action planning and asked how that translates to a Job Search Plan

Start JSP focusing, individually, on your preferences, trade-offs and objectives.

Swap your plan with your colleagues who critically appraise same for inconsistencies, realism and a contingency perspective.

To be continued

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Management Report Format

June 28, 2007 0 comments


The Report is to contain the following sections:

  • Introduction – including your team members and their positions in the management structure.
  • Summary – of your decisions taken; why you took them, the reasons behind them, your marketing, stock keeping, production strategies etc
  • Provide relevant management theory references which you include to back up your arguments
  • Conclusions – How well you did and if not, why not
  • Recommendations – should be where you put your money where your mouth is – one or several short sentences
  • Bibliography - referencing is to be used where appropriate
  • Appendices - diagrams, graphs, bar charts – if any

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

“The Recruitment Process” and “Interview Critique”

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Review content of "The Recruitment Process" and "Interview Critique"

Do role-play exercise.

What was important in a preparation for interview and was it required?

What was important in the preparation of the interviewer and did it achieve satisfactory answers?

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Understanding of an organization structure design.

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Important to rich an an understanding of the critical factors influencing design of organisation structure.

Review and discuss the factors affecting the design of the organization structure and the different types of structure

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Presentation Hints

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Preparation – group – book a room in the Library. Practice speaking to an audience

Preparation – personal – practice speaking in front of your bedroom mirror

Each group member is to speak even if it is only a few lines.

Acetates should be used to illustrate sales, profits, strategy

Your speech should be written in large letters and double spaced so that you do not have to peer at it

Speak clearly and audibly, not too fast

Maintain eye contact with your audience

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Team Working

June 28, 2007 0 comments

Introduce participants to key team roles

Help participants identify and consider their best team role

"Configure" a team and suggest its expected performance in light of Belbin team role theory

Group Work

  • Discuss role types given in handout "Useful People to Have in Teams"
  • Complete Self-Perception Inventory
  • Identify your preferred team role by analysing the role typical features
  • Using the Self-Perception Inventory and table below identify your "lead" team role and "back-up" team role
role Low Av. Hi Very hi Av.
CW 0-6 7-11 12-16 17-23 10
CH 0-6 7-10 11-13 14-18 8.8
SH 0-8 9-13 14-17 18-36 11.6
PL 0-4 5-8 9-12 13-29 7.3
RI 0-6 7-9 10-11 12-21 7.8
ME 0-5 6-9 10-12 13-19 8.2
TW 0-8 9-12 13-16 17-25 10.9
CF 0-3 4-6 7-9 10-17 5.5


CW = Company worker, CH = Chairman, SH = Shaper, PL= plant, RI = resource investigator, ME = Monitor Evaluator, TW = spirit; SF = Completer-Finisher

"Role Ballance and Team Development <>"_

Posted by Lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Creative Communications

July 19, 2007 0 comments

I. Introduction

Success at work is based not only on your ability to perform, but also on your personality. In fact, in any situation requiring contact with other people – personality is a key fact.

In this age of competition, the ability to cooperate – to work smoothly with others – is in danger of becoming a lost art. But look at the cooperation as a bank account. It is an investment that may not pay immediate dividends. Yet, if deposits are made, the dividends will eventually come both frequent and of high rate. Like a bank account, too, cooperation may demand the sacrifice of immediate conveniences for later reward.

Cooperation is actually an expression of self-interest and unselfishness. It demands that you adjust your immediate pleasure to the best interests of others. The reward of immediate sacrifices is a reputation that will contribute to your success. The team work is based on cooperation. Your ability to be friendly with everyone is a pillar to fit in and get along with your co-workers. Be slow to confide with the others. Be a listener instead of a confider. Keep the confidence of others, and keep your own confidence to yourself.

II. Opening Channels to Communicating

Imagine, you are trapped in a giant bubble. No one can hear you: you can hear no one. Another bubble comes into your vision. Someone is trapped just like you. Can you talk to that other person? Can you become friends? Do you want to establish a contact or just escape?

Numerous studies have shown that babies who are not communicated die within a year. Communication is, literally, a lifeline.

II. A. Overcome Barriers to Communication

What you say and write must mean the same to your listener as it does to you.

1. Poor Choice of Words

The first barrier can be overcome by choosing your words carefully. Choose words that will not be misunderstood.

Words must have the same feeling tone to the other person as they do to you.

2. Prejudice

Most of us want to skip the unpleasant things in life, especially if they are threat to the way we like to think of ourselves, our beliefs, and our prejudices. Each of us has had an experience of trying to persuade friends to abandon foolish ideas in favor of our sensible ones. As a result, the friends do not hear our arguments. We have the equal access to this devise. We read what we want to read, we hear what we want to hear.

3. Acceptance

On one of my husband’s lectures, a woman asked him a question that what she could do if she could not stand to see her face in the mirror; and then she started talking that other people could not accept her either.

The answer was that first she should learn to accept herself. She could not succeed with others if she cannot accept herself. My husband told her that first, she should accept herself no matter how she looks and then she will see that others will accept her too.

Generally speaking, if we see issues with others, we probably have the same weaknesses ourselves. Otherwise, how on earth should we know that someone is not perfect?

a. Accept yourself.

Do not dwell on your faults. Just accept them. This will no be helpful. As long as you defend yourself, make excuses, blame your troubles on others, you will be unable to change.

We become better only if we develop our strong points, and then our weaknesses will not matter.

Do you know what happens when you accept yourself and the way you are? With acceptance comes ability to change and the willingness to change.

b. Accept others

After you learned to accept yourself looking directly at your own faults, without criticism, you probably will be able look at shortcomings of others without trying to change them.

For instance, someone is angry at you. Relax, you are not a target. This situation can be caused by something else and you most likely have nothing to do with this.

When you stop defending yourself, you simply accept people the way they are. Your attitude will tell others that you are still their friend. When they see your accepting attitude, in spite of what they have said or done, they will be able to release the brake that holding them back. They will be able to change.

Remember, people are very sensitive.

Have you ever found that when you are hesitant or you are very emotional inside, people around you also feel tension? When you are calm inside, no matter what happens, it passes and you gain understanding and support from others.

4. Improve your awareness

a. Awareness When you Work in Groups

Awareness is a quality that is especially important when you work in groups. It means you need to be aware of the feelings and personalities of the people you work with.

Keep control of the situation. Ask appropriative questions when needed; keep silence when a person wants to be along. Be are aware of people’s moods are expectations. Speak with people only what is pleases them and avoid topics that might upset them.

b. Awareness of the Flow of Authority

Awareness has another side, as well.

Be aware of the flow of authority in the firm. You will “go through” channels.”

Take all your questions to your immediate manager. He will carry them to the next level of management, and so on. If you should go over the head of your immediate supervisor, you fail to show respect for this position.

Study the organizational chart that lists the officers of the company, heads of departments and so on. This shows how the whole organization works. You will also have a clear picture of your position. This will show you the pass for directions, information and suggestions.

II. B. Art of Persuasion

1. Develop a friendly attitude

A friendly personality is an asset anywhere. If you were born with liking people, you should do well.

Take every opportunity to say “thank you” with a smile. Follow rules of good etiquette, and you will actually feel friendly.

2. Study psychology

Why do people act like people? The more research has done on this subject, the more questions arrive while the soul of every person stays the mystery. There are some psychological principles that are useful in business:

  • “Yes” works better then “No”
  • Help the Other Person Feel Important
  • Ignore the Negative
  • Reward the Positive

a. “Yes” works better then “No”

If you want to persuade someone to do something, you will succeed if the discussion is positive and pleasant. That is simply because people are more wiling to listen to what you say.

b. Help the Other Person Feel Important

You never succeed if you build yourself up at the expense of others. If you pride yourself on how well you are doing, others may feel doubtful about their own success. The typical example is when people got married and one of the spouses starts dominating the other. This relationship might eventually break because one person will feel miserable while the other might feel that his partner is not as bright as expected.

If you say your listener, “You may not understand this, but …” you probably will make your listener smaller. Another statement that might put your listener down is if you say “I ought to be perfectly clear”.

To make others feel tall and important is to ask their advice, to get their point of view, and especially to make them a part of decision you make. Look for opportunities to give recognition, build others up, and make them feel ten feet tall.

Smart sales people play the second fiddle. Their relaxed manner helps customers to make decisions what to buy.

c. Ignore the Negative

When others complain about your actions or job performance, let them talk. Listen attentively. As you listen, ignore the part of conversation that sounds as if it is directed at you personally. Negative statements are best forgotten this way.

d. Reward the Positive

When someone says something positive about you or your company, respond warmly.. Such a response is rewarding to the other person.

Always practice to say something good to the person who compliments you. Always show how the compliment of the other person made you feel. Accepting compliments warmly takes practice, and this is never to later to begin.

II. C. Listening to Comminute

5.Concentrate on the Speaker

In face-to-face listening you find yourself planning your reply instead of concentrating what speaker is saying. This exact same tendency occurs when you listen to a lecture.

In addition, some people even find their minds wandering to personal matters. To avoid such destructions listen to hints as to speaker’s organizational plan.

6. Take Notes in Outline Form

A better plan is to listen a lot and write a little.

Listening is a receiving part of communication. Understanding is a key. Understand the main points what speaker is saying. If you spend all time writing down the words, you probably will miss some points.

7. Daydreaming

The enemy of daydreaming is activity. When you feel your attention is wandering, begin to write industriously.

Look at the speaker, be focused anticipate what he is saying and think of examples.

8. Destructions

You surroundings may destruct your attention. It can be anything – noises in the corridor or those coming from the street, latecomers or whispering in audience. Try to turn to deaf ear.

In my experience, the best thing is to sit as closer to a lecturer as possible. This way there is less destruction.

II. D. Creative Listening

Listening now becomes a creative process. There are ways to develop creative listening.

  1. Watch the person who is talking. There is so much to be learned from the expressions. Put yourself in a speaker’s shoes and try to feel what a speaker feels.
  2. Organize in your mind what speaker is saying. If you are being told of something what you have to do, write it down. Put the important statements made by a speaker in logical order. (Get back to your notes later if it is impossible during that time)
  3. Show that you are interested in what is being told you. Such responses as “That is a good suggestion” or “I’ll get right at it” will help the speaker and also will help you.
  4. In all aspects of conversation, whether of speaking or listening, success depends on co-operation.

III. Conversation as Communication

Communication is best achieved through simple planning and control.

  • you must make your message understood
  • you must receive/understand the intended message sent to you
  • you should exert some control over the flow of the communication

III. 1. Ambiguity Avoidance

As you (concerned with getting things done) your view of words should be pragmatic rather than philosophical. Thus, words mean not what the dictionary says they do but rather what the speaker intended.

Suppose your manager gives to you an instruction which contains an ambiguity which neither of you notice; and results in you producing entirely the wrong product. Who is at fault? The answer must be: who cares? Your time has been wasted, the needed product is delayed (or dead); attributing blame may be a satisfying (or defensive) exercise but it does not address the problem. In everything you say or hear, you must look out for possible misunderstanding and clarify the ambiguity

A second problem is that some people simply make mistakes. Your job is not simply to spot ambiguities but also to counter inconsistencies. Thus you should seek out (perhaps humorous) books on entomology (creepy crawlies) you would deduce that the word should have been etymology. More usual, however, is that in thinking over several alternatives you may suffer a momentary confusion and say one of them while meaning another. There are good scientific reasons (to do with the associative nature of the brain) why this happens, you have to be aware of the potential problem and counter for it.

Finally, of course, you may simply mishear. The omission of a simple word could be devastating. For instance, how long would you last as an explosives engineer if you failed to hear a simple negative in: "whatever happens next you must [not] cut the blue wi..."?

So, the problem is this: the word has multiple meanings, it might not be the one intended, and you may have misheard it in the first place - how do you know what the speaker meant?

Rule 1: PLAY BACK for confirmation

Simple, you ask for confirmation. You say "let me see if I have understood correctly, you are saying that ..." and you rephrase what the speaker said. If this "play back" version is acknowledged as being correct by the original speaker, then you have a greater degree of confidence in you own understanding. For any viewpoint/message/decision, there should be a clear, concise and verified statement of what was said; without this someone will get it wrong.

Rule 2: WRITE BACK for confidence

But do not stop there. If your time and effort depend upon it, you should write it down and send it to everyone involved as a double check. This has several advantages:

  • Further clarification - is this what you thought we agreed?
  • Consistency check - the act of writing may highlight defects/omissions
  • board from which to proceed
  • Evidence - hindsight often blurs previous ignorance and people often fail to recall their previous errors

Rule 3: Give Background for context

When speaking yourself, you can often counter for possible problems by adding information, and so providing a broader context in which your words can be understood. Thus, there is less scope for alternative interpretations since fewer are consistent. When others are speaking, you should deliberately ask questions yourself to establish the context in which they are thinking. When others are speaking, you should deliberately ask questions yourself to establish the context in which they are thinking.

III. 2. Practical Points

As with all effective communication, you should decide (in advance) on (1) the purpose of the conversation; and (2) have the plan for achieving it.

There is no alternative to this. Some people are proficient at "thinking on their feet" - but this is generally because they already have clear understanding of the context and their own goals. You have to plan; however, the following are a few techniques to help the conversation along.

a. Assertiveness

The definition of to assert is: "to declare; state clearly". This is your aim. If someone argues against you, even loses their temper, you should be quietly assertive. Much has been written to preach this simple fact and commonly the final message is a three-fold plan of action:

  • acknowledge what is being said by showing an understanding of the position, or by simply replaying it (a polite way of saying "I heard you already")
  • state your own point of view clearly and concisely with perhaps a little supporting evidence
  • state what you want to happen next (move it forward)

Thus we have something like: yes, I see why you need the report by tomorrow; however, I have no time today to prepare the document because I am in a meeting with a customer this afternoon; either I could give you the raw data and you could work on it yourself, or you could make do with the interim report from last week. You will have to make many personal judgment calls when being assertive. There will certainly be times when a bit of quiet force from you will win the day but there will be times when this will get nowhere, particularly with more senior (and unenlightened) management. In the latter case, you must agree to abide by the decision of the manager but you should make your objection (and reasons) clearly known. For yourself, always be aware that subordinates might be right when they disagree with you and if events prove them so, acknowledge that fact gracefully.

b. Confrontations

When you have a difficult encounter, be professional; do not lose your self-control because, simply, it is of no use. Some managers believe that it is useful for "discipline" to keep staff a little nervous. Thus, these managers are slightly volatile and will be willing "to let them have it" when the situation demands. If you do this, you must be consistent and fair so that you staff know where they stand. If you deliberately lose your temper for effect, then that is your decision - however, you must never lose control.

Insults are ineffective. If you call people names, then they are unlikely to actually listen to what you have to say; in the short term you may feel some relief at "getting it off your chest", but in the long run you are merely perpetuating the problem since you are not addressing it. This is common sense. There are two implications. Firstly, even under pressure, you have to remember this. Secondly, what you consider fair comment may be insulting to another - and the same problem emerges. Before you say anything, stop, establish what you want as the outcome, plan how to achieve this, and then speak.

Finally, if you are going to criticize or discipline someone, always assume that you have misunderstood the situation and ask questions first which check the facts. This simple courtesy will save you from much embarrassment.

c. Seeking Information

There are two ways of phrasing any question: one way (the closed question) is likely to lead to a simple sound in reply (yes, no, maybe), the second way (the open question) will hand over the speaking role to someone else and force them to say something a little more informative.

Suppose you conduct a review of a recently finished (?) project with Mr. Fast and it goes something like this:

  • "Have you finished project X?"
  • "Yes"
  • "If everything written up?"
  • "Nearly"
  • "So there is documentation left to do?"
  • "Will it take you long?"
  • "No, not long"

Before your fingers start twitching to place themselves around Mr. Fast’s neck, consider that your questions are not actually helping the flow of information. The same flow of questions in an open format would be: what is left to do of project X, what about the documentation, when will that be completely finished? Try answering Yes or No to those questions.

Open questions are extremely easy to formulate. You establish in your own mind the topic/aim of the question and then you start the sentence with the words:


d. Let others speak

Of course, there is more to a conversation (managed or otherwise) than the flow of information. You may also have to win that information by winning the attention and confidence of the other person. There are many forms of flattery - the most effective is to give people your interest. To get Mr. Fast to give you all his knowledge, you must give her all your attention; talk to her about his view on the subject. Ask questions: what do you think about that idea, have you ever met this problem before, how would you tackle this situation?

Silence is effective - and much under-used. People are nervous of silence and try to fill it. You can use this if you are seeking information. You ask the question, you lean back, the person answers, you nod and smile, you keep quiet, and the person continues with more detail simply to fill your silence.

e. To finish

At the end of a conversation, you have to give people a clear understanding of the outcome. For instance, if there has been a decision, restate it clearly (just to be sure) in terms of what should happen and by when; if you have been asking questions, summarize the significant (for you) aspects of what you have learnt.

III. 3. Meeting Management - Preparation

In any organization, "meetings" are a vital part of the organization of work and the flow of information. They act as a mechanism for gathering together resources from many sources and pooling then towards a common objective. They are disliked and mocked because they are usually futile, boring, time-wasting, dull, and inconvenient with nothing for most people to do except doodle while some opinionated has-been extols the virtues of his/her last great (misunderstood) idea.

Your challenge is to break this mould and to make your meetings effective. Meetings should be planned beforehand, monitored during for effectiveness, and reviewed afterwards for improving their administration.

A meeting is the ultimate form of managed conversation; you can organize the information and structure of the meeting to support the effective communication of the participants. Some of the ideas below may seem a little too precise for an easy going, relaxed, semi-informal team atmosphere - but if you administer to gain a reputation for holding decisive, effective meetings, then people will value this efficiency and to prepare professionally so that their contribution will be heard.

a. Should you cancel?

As with all conversations, you must first ask: is it worth your time? If the meeting involves the interchange of views and the communication of the current status of related projects, then you should be generous with your time. But you should always consider canceling a meeting which has little tangible value.

b. Who should attend?

You must be strict. A meeting loses its effectiveness if too many people are involved: so if someone has no useful function, explain this and suggest that they do not come. Notice, they may disagree with your assessment, in which case they should attend (since they may know something you do not); however, most people are only too happy to be released from yet another meeting.

c. How long?

It may seem difficult to predict the length of a discussion - but you must. Discussions tend to fill the available time which means that if the meeting is open-ended, it will drift on forever. You should stipulate a time for the end of the meeting so that everyone knows, and everyone can plan the rest of their day with confidence.

It is wise to make this expectation known to everyone involved well in advance and to remind them at the beginning of the meeting. There is often a tendency to view meetings as a little relaxation since no one person has to be active throughout. You can redress this view by stressing the time-scale and thus forcing the pace of the discussion: "this is what we have to achieve, this is how long we have to get it done".

If some unexpected point arises during the meeting then realize that since it is unexpected:

  1. you might not have the right people present,
  2. those there may not have the necessary information, and
  3. a little thought might save a lot of discussion.

If the new discussion looks likely to be more than a few moments, stop it and deal with the agreed agenda.

The new topic should then be dealt with at another "planned" meeting.

d. Agenda

The purpose of an agenda is to inform participants of the subject of the meeting in advance, and to structure the discussion at the meeting itself. To inform people beforehand, and to solicit ideas, you should circulate a draft agenda and ask for notice of any other business. Still before the meeting, you should then send the revised agenda with enough time for people to prepare their contributions. If you know in advance that a particular participant will either need information or be providing information, then make this explicitly clear so that there is no confusion.

The agenda states the purpose of each section of the meeting. There will be an outcome from each section. If that outcome is so complex that it can not be summarized in a few points, then it was probably too complex to be assimilated by the participants. The understanding of the meeting should be sufficiently precise that it can be summarized in short form - so display that summary for all other interested parties to see. This form of display will emphasize to all that meetings are about achieving defined goals - this will help you to continue running efficient meetings in the future.

III. 4. Meeting Management - Concluding

Whether you actually sit as the Chair or simply lead from the side-lines, as the manager you must provide the necessary support to coordinate the contributions of the participants. The degree of control which you exercise over the meeting will vary throughout; if you get the structure right at the beginning, a meeting can effectively run itself especially if the participants know each other well. In a team, your role may be partially undertaken by others; but if not, you must manage.

a. Maintaining Communication

Your most important tools are:

  • Clarification - always clarify: the purpose of the meeting, the time allowed the rules to be observed (if agreed) by everyone.
  • Summary - at each stage of the proceedings, you should summarize the current position and progress: this is what we have achieved/agreed, this is where we have reached.
  • Focus on stated goals - at each divergence or pause, re-focus the proceedings on the original goals.

b. Code of conduct

In any meeting, it is possible to begin the proceedings by establishing a code of conduct, often by merely stating it and asking for any objections (which will only be accepted if a demonstrably better system is proposed). Thus if the group contains opinionated wind-bags, you might all agree at the onset that all contributions should be limited to two minutes (which focuses the mind admirably). You can then impose this with the full backing of the whole group.

c. Matching method to purpose

The (stated) purpose of a meeting may suggest to you a specific way of conducting the event, and each section might be conducted differently. For instance, if the purpose is:

  • to convey information, the meeting might begin with a formal presentation followed by questions
  • to seek information, the meeting would start with a short (clear) statement of the topic/problem and then an open discussion supported by notes on a display, or a formal brainstorming session
  • to make a decision, the meeting might review the background and options, establish the criteria to be applied, agree who should make the decision and how, and then do it
  • to ratify/explain decisions, etc

As always, once you have paused to ask yourself the questions: what is the purpose of the meeting and how can it be most effectively achieved; your common sense will then suggest a working method to expedite the proceedings. You just have to deliberately pause. Manage the process of the meeting and the meeting will work.

d. Support

The success of a meeting will often depend upon the confidence with which the individuals will participate. Thus all ideas should be welcome. No one should be laughed at or dismissed ("laughed with" is good, "laughed at" is destructive). This means that even bad ideas should be treated seriously - and at least merit a specific reason for not being pursued further. Not only is this supportive to the speaker, it could also be that a good idea has been misunderstood and would be lost if merely rejected. But basically people should be able to make naive contributions without being made to feel stupid, otherwise you may never hear the best ideas of all.

Avoid direct criticism of any person. For instance, if someone has not come prepared then that fault is obvious to all. If you leave the criticism as being simply that implicit in the peer pressure, then it is diffuse and general; if you explicitly rebuke that person, then it is personal and from you (which may raise unnecessary conflict). You should merely seek an undertaking for the missing preparation to be done: we need to know this before we can proceed, could you circulate it to us by tomorrow lunch?

e. Responding to problems

The rest of this section is devoted to ideas of how you might deal with the various problems associated with the volatile world of meetings. Some are best undertaken by the designated Chair; but if he/she is ineffective, or if no one has been appointed, you should feel free to help any meeting to progress. After all, why should you allow your time to be wasted.

If a participant strays from the agenda item, call him/her back: "we should deal with that separately, but what do you feel about the issue X?"

If there is confusion, you might ask: "do I understand correctly that ...?"

If the speaker begins to ramble, wait until an inhalation of breath and jump in: "yes I understand that such and such, does any one disagree?"

If a point is too woolly or too vague ask for greater clarity: "what exactly do you have in mind?"

If someone interrupts (someone other than a rambler), you should suggest that: "we hear your contribution after Gretchen has finished."

If people chat, you might either simply state your difficulty in hearing/concentrating on the real speaker. or ask them a direct question: "what do you think about that point."

If someone gestures disagreement with the speaker (e.g. by a grimace), then make sure they are brought into the discussion next: "what do you think Gretchen?"

If you do not understand, say so: "I do not understand that, would you explain it a little more; or do you mean X or Y?"

If there is an error, look for a good point first: "I see how that would work if X Y Z, but what would happen if A B C?"

If you disagree, be very specific: "I disagree because ..."

IV. Conclusion

The tower of Babel collapsed because people could no longer communicate; their speech became so different that no one could understand another. We need to communicate to coordinate our own work and that of others. The key is to treat a conversation as well as any other activity: by establishing an aim, planning what to do, and checking afterwards that the aim has been achieved. Only in this way can we work effectively with others in building through common effort.

V. Practical Application

The aim of this workshop is to provide the listeners a fundamental understanding of what constitutes creative communications.

Listeners will

  1. develop awareness of professional approaches in relation to their attitudes, actions and communication skills;
  2. learn more about professional approaches to oral and written forms of communication;
  3. work with others as effective members of a team, demonstrating understanding of the importance of co-operative behavior;
  4. prepare and deliver effective meetings getting your message across loud and clear.

VI. Suggested Readings:

Curran, J.C., Verbal and non-verbal communication (cpd Ltd, 1988)

Hague, P. & Roberts, K., Presentations and Report Writing, (Kogan Page, 1994 Subjects: Business presentations Business report writing Marketing research

Hargie, O.D.W., "A handbook of communication skills, 2nd ed., (London: Routledge, 1997) <,M1>"_

Klepper, M.M. & Gunther, R.E., I'd rather die than give a speech, (Irwin, 1994) Written in an engaging and readable style, this practical guide is a must for both beginners and seasoned professionals

Rawlins, K., Presentation and communication skills: a handbook for practitioners, (MacMillan, 1993)

Russon, A. & Wallace H., Personal Development for Work (South-Western Publishing Co., 1981)

Siddons, S., Presentation skills, (Institute of Personnel and Development, 1998)

Turk, C., Effective Speaking: communicating in speech, (Spon, 1985)


Smith, D., Powerful presentation skills: how to get a group's attention, Vol.1, 2 and 3, (Careertrack, 1997)

Posted by lisa
Categories: Operations Management Thoughts and Arguments Managers, Employers, Leaders - Creative Approach Building Your Personal Development Portfolio

Building Your Personal Development Portfolio - Web Presentations

August 1, 2007 0 comments

"Presentation Guidelines <>"_


"Action Planning, Matching & Decision-Making <>"_

"Development Focus <>"_

"Understanding Principles of Good Organization <>"_

"Teamworking <>"_

Posted by lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio Web Presentations

Discussing Salary

January 31, 2008 0 comments

Here's an ideal scenario:

You impressed someone who offers you a job of your dreams, you're again meeting this person again and he or she gives you the job offer, with a salary below what you had expected. But what if the offer is unacceptable to you? If it really is one of your dream jobs -- or even simply a job you really want -- you should consider moving into the negotiation phase by making a counter proposal to the employer.

Discussing salary

Handle this poorly and you'll not only negatively impact the offer you get, but could actually knock yourself out of the running altogether!

You were called for the offer, you will never know exactly what the manager is thinking about offering you.

So don't guess or try to be overly involved in this process. Set things up for them to do all the work so that you can avoid the following traps.

If you say you want more than what they are thinking about offering , you will turn them off.

If you say you want substantially less than what they are considering. They may think you are desperate (or worse...they may actually offer you that!)

What I'm looking for is the most competitive offer. I'm hesitant to give you an exact # because I'm not sure what you think I'm worth and how I'd fit in with the compensation structure of the rest of the team. So, I guess this is a better question to ask of you.....What do you think I might be worth to your organization?"

"While money is very important, the opportunity within the position is really my #1 consideration. If we agree there's a match, I'm confident that you'd offer me the most you felt that I was worth."

What do you think I might be worth to your company?"

If every company just made their BEST offer the first time, we wouldn’t see so many “bidding wars” (which are headache for everyone).

You'll have your greatest negotiation leverage between the time the employer makes the original offer and the time you accept the final offer. Once you accept an offer, you have little to no room to negotiate

You’ll have more power to negotiate when the field of candidates has been reduced to just you -- when the employer is completely sold on you as the best candidate for the position.


  1. Don't negotiate at the time the initial job offer is made. Thank the employer for the offer and express your strong interest and enthusiasm in the job, but state that you'll need time to evaluate the entire compensation package.

Most employers are willing to give you a fair amount of time to review -- and if you run across an employer who wants a decision immediately, consider long and hard whether you want to work for such a company.

  1. Do your research. The greatest tool in any negotiation is information. Make sure you have done a thorough job of determining your fair market value for the job you are seeking, the salary range of the job for this specific employer, and geographic, economic, industry, and company-specific factors that might affect the given salary. Also try to obtain information on the employer's standard benefits package so that you have information beyond salary.

It is very important how the position is called and your line of responsibilities. If you a Director, so you have more room to make decisions, and your salary will be decent. If you have some manager over you, you have much less room for negotiations because you will be given tasks, but someone else will to decide and you are to follow.

  1. Negotiate to your strength. If you are a smooth talker (an extravert), call the employer and ask for a follow-up meeting to discuss a counter proposal. If you communicate better in writing, follow our guidelines for writing a counter proposal letter (below).

To me, I am very good at writing as every writing takes time and thoughts to put things in a nice way. I also am a very good speaker, but in person. I cannot do any negotiations by phone because this freaks me out. Money and the title are the most important things - at least to me. The higher the title the better. So I feel miserable when someone offering me any Executive Assistant title. And people may not even know it.

I remind myself of a Sun Wukong, Handsome Monkey King when we are talking about titles.

His first title on heavens was a head of the Heavenly Stables when he first went to Heaven. But when he found out that it had no rank whatsoever, he left the post in anger. From then on, he always hated it when anyone called him. When he returned to Flower Fruit Mountain after leaving his post as Bi Ma Wen, two single-horned demon kings came to him and suggested that he take the title of Great Sage Equal of Heaven. Wu Kong was very receptive of this idea and called himself by that title from then on. Afterwards, when he defeated all the Heavenly generals sent to capture him, the Jade Emperor (ruler of Heaven) gave him the post of Great Sage Equal of Heaven to placate. Anyway we are not arguing whether Money King actually has any job to do, but he was anyway very rich and agreed to work for free for the title.

  1. Always ask for a higher salary (within acceptable limits) than you are willing to accept so that when the employer counters your proposal, the salary should be near your original goal. And when possible, try and show how your actions (once on board) will recoup the extra amount (or more) that you are seeking -- through cost savings or increased sales revenue, productivity, efficiencies.

I will ask a salary for 10% higher then they propose, and then move on to other elements of the job offer.

To me, I personally prefer contracts. You never know what kind of opportunity may arrive. If I am a manager and get an offer as a director, I will not think a second. I will take an offer with more responsibilities. So if I have a contract, I feel that my employment is at will and based on the project. This way I feel I can request more money later when my project is successfully implemented.

When presenting a counter proposal to the employer, be sure and include a few benefits that are expendable so that you can drop them in a concession to the employer as negotiations continue.

I also think that counter proposal is a great tool because sometimes you can offer something in addition of your skills and ask for more responsibilities.

  1. Never stop selling yourself throughout the negotiation process. Keep reminding the employer of the impact you will make, the problems you will solve, the revenue you will generate. And continue expressing interest and enthusiasm for the job and the company.
If you have no intention of accepting the company's offer, don't waste your time or the company's by entering into negotiation. Negotiation is a process designed to find common ground between two or more parties.

If you have multiple job offers, don't put the companies into a bidding war for your services; it rarely works out.

  1. Don't enter negotiations with the wrong attitude. Always have in the back of your mind that your goal with these negotiations is a win-win situation. You want to get a better deal, but you also need to let the employer feel as though they got a good deal as well.

I think it is natural to have a wrong attitude. It is one thing that you are working with a friend, then yes. People get together discuss strengthens and weaknesses and agree on a compensation.

You need to make someone who hires you to be sure not as a money-saving asses, but as a liability. And I always think that life is not perfect, but is fair. God created universe and made good things for good people and bad things for some people who like to suffer. However, life is not perfect and things get messed up. So I believe I need to really fight to make people give me what I am worse.

I was always surprised how people with less abilities ad strength make more then other very talented individuals. So the secret is that these people could not survive if they were not users. They will always find someone more capable to do a job. So I think if you are capable, then you need to prove t and fight for it. Nobody will never get you anything as a gift - no matter how smart you are, how marketable your skills are. Keep in mind, one day this may all change once you open your business. Then you really can apply your talents and you will have nobody to blame if something goes the way you have not expected.

7. Never make demands. Instead, raise questions and make requests during negotiations. Keep the tone conversational, not confrontational.

Another thing to overcome is how employer will accept your counter proposal. Be prepared for any of a number of possible reactions to your counter proposal, from complete acceptance to agreeing to some concessions to refusal to negotiate.

You have to be willing to walk away from negotiations. If you don't have a strong position (a good current job or one or more current or potential job offers), it will be harder for you to negotiate. If you really need or want the job, be more careful in your negotiations. But in my opinion is better to show who you really are then play a role who you are not. The situation is to come. I tried to get positions when I just came to US to do some supporting role. In this case if you find a problem, you are the problem. No matter how good you play, people will see that you do not belong to this position. And another thing if you are a doer and you really stuck when you cannot make decision because somebody from a chain of authority is higher and stuck at the level of his/her incompetency, you fucked. Sooner or later you will feel so miserable, so you will just decide to leave. No matter how you love this business, no matter how many friends you have in the company So this is very dangerous to accept something that you much above. Besides, people actually respect you better when they pay you more money and you can work smart, not hard.

Once the employer agrees to your compensation requests, the negotiations are over. You cannot ask for anything more -- or risk appearing immature or greedy and having the employer's offer withdrawn or rescinded.

8. Always be sure to get the final offer in writing. Be extremely wary of companies that are not willing to do so.

Note: one advantage of writing a counter proposal letter is that you list the terms of the offer in your letter.

Wishing you luck and being positive!

Posted by lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio Hire Me

Hire Me

November 25, 2018 0 comments

Lisa Smirnova


Project Manager with over 10 years of experience leading multicultural, multi-functional teams.

Diverse business acumen encompassing business development, marketing, consumer market research, and engineering.

Utilize strong time management skills and market data research abilities getting the marketing results the company needs to succeed.

Team player with the ability to manage unstructured work that entails design, invention, and change.

Excellent communication skills: an attentive listener, articulate speaker and persuasive negotiator with fluency in English, Russian and Ukrainian


  • Created custom gaming app platform for a tech startup resulting in 5 million in series A round funding
  • Launched an advertising platform for mobile apps, which generated 500k in revenue over a 5 year period.
  • Released 225 apps published in the Apple App Store
  • Launched the first student radio app in the nation for UCLA Radio
  • Redesigned & built BruinWalk - a social networking website for students with professor reviews, apartments to rent, calendar of events increasing visitor conversion rate by 50%.
  • Our platforms voted best student media in the nation award from 2010 to 2014 UCLA
  • Implemented a workflow and business automation platform for CCAPP which decreased processing errors by 95% totally replacing manual paper-based processes and impacted a productivity gain of 70% over a ten year period.


Kharkov Civil Engineering University

Master of Science in Economics

Kharkov State Academy of Municipal Economy

Bachelor Degree of Science in Engineering


MarpaSoft LLC, Los Angeles, CA 2009 - Present

Founder - Product Manager/Business Development

MarpaSoft LLC is a Los Angeles based full-service agency specializing in creative design, custom web & iOS application development.

  • Negotiate contracts and project budgets. Translate contracts into statements of work, and turn them into project requirements.
  • Manage requirements and proactively track deliverables.
  • Lead and deliver multiple projects and releases simultaneously.
  • Continuously assess project risks and plan actions to mitigate.
  • Analyze and research market trends and competitors, provide ideas to enhance customers’ businesses.
  • Acquired 23 customers.
  • Managed the development of 17 complex database driven websites & 225 mobile applications using Python/Django/Objective C, PostgreSQL.
  • Automated the app submission process and maintain multiple productions of apps simultaneously securing jobs for over 100 students at UCLA Associated Student Media.
  • Managed the development of SAAS Custom CRM.

Director, Business and Customer Development

11/07 – 11/09

Share Now, Beverly Hills, CA

IT/Media Sharing/Social Networking

  • Led teams of 20+ development, engineering, design and marketing professionals in all phases of product development (from requirements gathering through a build, test phases, QA, launch, and support). Successfully managed remove, outsourcing and in-house teams.
  • Managed annual project budget of $900,000.00. Successfully exceeded department expectations in achieving project milestones, resulting in significant time (50%) and cost savings (est. $100K savings).
  • Led IT recruiting activities hiring 8 programmers, 4 system administrators, 2 DBAs, and 12 marketing managers.
  • Trained marketing managers of software usage.
  • Oversaw each phase of development is delivered on schedule and with high-quality results.
  • Conducted interviews and created surveys to improve usability of a product.
  • Analyzed the results of surveys and proposed new user-friendly features for social network users which resulted with over 2 million clicks per month.

LRN Product Manager 2006-2007

  • Managed a delivery of ethical compliance program for AIG, Apogee Enterprises, Aleris, BASF, Biomet, BMC, BP Pipelines, Cameron, Dow Chemical, Computer Associates, eBay, Follett, Johnson & Jonson, Mitre, National Semiconductor, Viacom bringing over 14M annually.
  • Participated in business process reengineering cutting 40 percent of budget on technical support

Posted by lisa
Categories: Building Your Personal Development Portfolio Hire Me