Monday, 25 March 2013

How are we looking after our solicitors?

69% of calls to LawCare due to stress

I have just been reading LawCare’s news for Spring 2013 outlining the statistics for 2012 and felt it was necessary to raise awareness of the number of solicitors calling for help.  

Below is a selection of the statistics outlined:

·         378 case files opened, with 1,206 further calls involving follow up related to these original calls.

·         69% of the calls were due to stress.

·         272 of the callers were able to identify a specific cause for their problem and 28% of these identified the cause to be workload.

·         62% of the callers were female.

·         35% of the callers were trainees or had been qualified for five years of less.

·         62% of the callers were solicitors.

Sad, isn’t it?

I also get a number of calls from solicitors each week who are feeling extremely stressed by their work and seeking help with their career.  It makes you wonder how many more lawyers out there are unhappy at work but have yet to seek help.

My question is:

How are we looking after our solicitors? 

There are so many tools and techniques that can be used to address career and personal development issues and, if these issues are addressed at the earliest opportunity, lawyers can be prevented from running out of coping strategies and becoming increasingly stressed.
I would love to hear how law firms are dealing with this issue as these statistics seem to show that more attention needs to be given to those solicitors who are struggling at work. 

Monday, 18 March 2013

Which career will best suit my skills and experiences?

There must be something out there I would enjoy.

I have no idea what I want to do.

I am not sure if this is what I want to do forever.

How do I change career?

I speak to a number of people each week who are feeling disillusioned by their current role and want to change career.  However, they are struggling to identify a career that would best suit their skills, experiences and personality.  They are spending hours searching the internet for jobs and reading hundreds of job advertisements in the hope that one will stand out as their dream job for the future. 

Perhaps a dream job can be discovered this way but you will find this method extremely time consuming and a bit like looking for a needle in a haystack. 

If you have spent a lot of time searching for job advertisements, now may be the time to have a short break from the internet and take a step back into your own world.  This is the time to start developing your self-awareness and find out who you are and want you want. 

What does this mean?  Well, first start assessing your skills, strengths and interests.  What do you enjoy doing?  What are you good at?  Find out what really makes you tick.  You could ask trusted friends and family for help in developing your ideas. 

Next, consider what is really important to you in your personal and working life.  Would you be willing to move for your career?  How much do you want to earn?  How many hours are you willing to work?

Whilst making these assessments about yourself, spend time imagining your first day in your ideal job.  Where are you? What would you be doing?  Who would you be talking to?  Find out what your imagination can tell you.

Keep thinking and once you have really gained an understanding of who you are, this is the time to start exploring different career ideas which closely match your discoveries.

Building your self-awareness is the first best step to enable the discovery of what you want to do.

For additional help, do click here to sign up for my 30 tips on making a successful career change and getting the job you want.

Monday, 11 March 2013

Create a winning CV NOW!

It’s all about making your CV stand out from the crowd.

It can be difficult drafting a great CV, particularly if you haven’t had the need to use one for a while.      

What’s the best format?  How long should it be? How do I explain a gap in employment? 

There are so many questions to answer and, without proper thought and preparation, it can be easy for these to remain unanswered causing mistakes to be made. 

Here are just 5 of the most common CV mistakes:

1.     Failing to list achievements.

Remember you are not drafting a job specification.  Avoid simply listing the responsibilities for your job.

2.    Being too general. 

If you ‘managed projects’, state how many, what they were and give an example of when you really achieved in managing a project.  Make sure all detail you provide is relevant to the job.

3.    Mentioning why you left a job.

4.    Lying – you will be caught out!

...and the most common mistakes are...

5.     Spelling mistakes and typos. 

Saying you started your current role in 1910 and that you’ve got ‘good attention to derail’ will not impress!   

If you feel you would like some additional help with preparing your CV, I have launched a new CV review service designed specifically to help you.   Not only do we assist in making your CV stand out from the crowd, we also provide a FREE CV template and 20 tips on creating a great CV. To find out more, simply click here!

Make your first impression a good impression.