Weekly Posts

Week 10: Most Important Thing I’ve Learned

Throughout this team, I have learned a lot of practical things that I will be able to take into my current and future positions. The two things that stand out to me the most is being an active applicant and building/maintaining my network. The idea of advocating for myself as a candidate has always made me uncomfortable. By taking a step out of my comfort zone to showcase my skills and desires in a new position, could lead to new and rewarding position with a company that may be more aligned with my goals and values. Being an active applicant can look different ways, so I can choose a few ways that make me comfortable and gain visibility by potential employers. Additionally, I would be able to highlight my current skills and experience while communicating what I am looking for in a new position. By communicating this with a company before applying, it saves their time, and my own time, by matching values immediately or not. Regarding the network, I have always believed that building a strong network is key to finding new opportunities and potential candidates. The process that is discussed regarding building a network was extremely impacting. By committing a small amount of time on a consistent basis, you can get great recommendations and stay connected with people in drastically different industries. By creating consistent time to check in with different people in your network, it helps people stay relevant but also allows you to build a meaningful connection. While I have been focused on building my network, this gave me practical actions that I can immediately put into action. I have not approached building my network in such a process driven way. By implementing these changes into my life, I will be able to make myself more known as a candidate and be surrounded by a large network when I am searching for a new position.

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Week 9: Self Reflection

1. What am I good at?

I believe that I am good at building connections with individuals and creating a safe place to bring concerns. I believe that I am good at understanding the goals of an organization and identifying areas of improvement. I also believe that I am good at being hearing someone out to understand how I can best encourage/support them.

2. What do I value?

I value direct and clear communication styles. I value integrity and honesty among my team and colleagues. I value organizations that are focused on helping the world, not just making money. I value continual learning and growth. I value authentic relationships.

3. How did I get here?

I got here through following my passions, interests, and seeking out new opportunities in each area of my life. I try to set goals and work toward them daily. I focus on introspection and continually trying to improve myself. I have been able to make it here because of the relationships I have and the support system I am surrounded with.

4. Where am I going?

I am hoping to finish my MBA degree and then pursue positions that are related to the management consulting field. I would love to work with startups and smaller companies to establish clear and sustainable business practices. I would eventually like to branch into the winery management field and look into opportunities to own and run a winery.

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Week 7: IPIP-NEO Test

After taking the test, I received the results of high extraversion, high agreeableness, high conscientiousness, low neuroticism, and average openness to experience. My highest individual score was self-efficacy while my lowest score was anger. I think my test results show that I am a very people-oriented person and I am very cognizant of my impact on those around me. I stay calm and collected even when experiencing stressful events in my life. I enjoy experiencing new things but also appreciate normalcy.

If a potential employer was viewing these results, they may see that I can lack imagination and new perspectives. They would see that I am very conscientious of my actions and the impact of others. They would see that I believe in myself and do not let things stress me out. I scored very high on cooperation which could result in me being a great team player. Depending on the type of job that I would be in, could have greater impacts on what the employer may think. For example, based on the high extraversion score, I could be well suited for customer facing positions that require a lot of interaction. On the other hand, I probably would not be suited to work behind a computer all. Additionally, I would likely work well in environments that are regularly changing and bringing new projects. This would work well with my openness to experience.

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Week 5: Typical vs. Maximal Performance

If you were in the shoes of the business owner and had to choose which person would you hire (Avery or Jaime) and why?

As the business owner, it would heavily depend on the role and type of business that I am hiring for. For example, if this position is one that the workload is pretty consistent, most of the time – like a receptionist – then I would want to hire Jaime because of the consistency. However, if the position is more cyclical, then I would look at hiring Avery because of their ability to perform at a high level. Either way, I would heavily invest resources into either employee to help them develop further. Without knowing the the business or position, I would default to hiring Avery because they have a higher potential than Jaime and I believe an effective manager can help bring up the quality of their work.

Describe a type of job where it would be better to hire someone like Avery (i.e., high potential, poor consistency) than Jaime? What is it about that job that makes someone like Avery more valuable than Jaime?

I would hire Avery for a position that is critical for innovation, strategy, event planning, and project management. Avery would excel in positions like these because they work hard to meet a milestone and then there is a break before the next milestone. Avery is able to step up to the plate when there is something that needs to be taken care of, and will deliver great results. Additionally, working with a high performer in these roles will be critical for delivering exceptional work. Avery would bring greater skills to this job because of their ability to deliver above the expectations.

Describe a type of job where it would be better to hire someone like Jaime (i.e., low potential, high consistency) than Avery? What is it about that job that makes someone like Jaime more valuable?

As stated above, I believe roles with little variation in workload would be best for Jaime. This could look like a mail courier, receptionist, bookkeeper, or similar. By maintaining a consistent workload demand, Jaime would continue to deliver consistent, good work. By having someone who’s skills and potential match the role that they are in, there is a higher chance of success in the role. A candidate like Jaime is great for positions with little variability and effort toward organizational goals. Instead, Jaime would thrive in a position that helps complete the job, but does not require someone that would go “above-and-beyond”.

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Week 4: Critiquing a Recruitment Ad

First, what is your brand? By this, I mean what is the first impression that you present to potential employers? What are your strengths? What are your weaknesses? What makes you unique or different?

I think of my brand as a person-focused leader that is focused on helping others and being a change agent. I thrive in environments that are seeking to improve their processes, welcome new ideas, and are willing to approach situations from a different perspective. I value research and understanding of social psychology in the approach to creating work environments that are effective, enjoyable to be in, and generate strong, positive work. I believe my strengths are in communication with a variety of audiences and a keen detail for navigating and implementing change in workplace. I work to limit employee barriers so people can efficiently and accurately complete their job. My weaknesses are with time management – I tend to spend more time than necessary in the research and development stage working toward a clear process. Additionally, I can procrastinate on tasks that I am not excited to complete. I believe that my perspective/experience and education make me a unique candidate. I have worked in a variety of workplaces, remotely consulting with HRIS all over the world, working in a psychiatric residential facility, and in higher ed which has given me a unique way of viewing workplaces and employee satisfaction. Having an undergraduate degree in psychology and working toward a graduate degree in business allows me to assess situations with a person-focused approach.

Second, how could this information be communicated to organizations through the means of a novel and creative situation wanted ad and how would you go about making your situation wanted ad visible to prospective organizations?

A creative way to share this information with organizations could be to connect with leaders of their board of directors or outreach team. For example, I have reached out to a company to work on their junior board of directors. This would allow me time to work closely with leadership of the organization while also contributing to their mission. Another creative way to share my interest could be through creating posts on social media promoting my skills and the opportunities that I am looking for employment – this would allow me to tag the company and make connections with their social media teams.

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Week 3: Job Descriptions

Think of the last job you had. How much did the job description influence your decision to apply for the position? How closely did your experience on the job match the job description? In what ways was it similar and in what ways was it different? If you have it available, please share a copy of the job description in your post.

My current position was the last job that I applied for. When reviewing the job description, I was really interested in the combination of the HR and financial duties. Prior to this role, I was an HRIS consultant working with clients all over the world. Prior to that, I worked in a finance and accounting, administration role. Since this position combined the finance and HR, I was very interested in pursuing it. Additionally, I was able to discuss the growth opportunities of this position with the hiring manager to see how this position would grow and change. During those conversations, I was able to understand how this position would look a year from then and understand the opportunities of working in a strategic role along the leadership of the office. This position was very different than my past role because I was moving from the private sector to higher ed. Additionally, this position was more focused in finance than my HRIS role was.

The job description was a tool to start a conversation. Once I was able to discuss with the hiring manager the goals of the position, I was better able to understand the needs of the position and the future growth opportunities. This description was just the start while the office went through organizational changes. Once those changes were complete, there was a greater opportunity for growth in the position. Since I gained that information from the conversation, I was better able to understand the role and determine if I was interested in pursuing it.

Overall, I felt that my prior experience was a good match with the requirements of this position. Furthermore, I was interested in the growth opportunities that this position would offer in the future.

Position Summary:

Under the general supervision of the Fiscal Director in the Vice President for Research. This provides administrative and technical support for the Vice President of Research office and the Center & Institutes on issues pertaining to Human Resource needs and fiscal needs.

Position Duties:

60% – Collaborates with Central HR and Business Centers HR to ensure the Research office is in compliance with the University’s HR related procedures and polices; this includes salary increases process for the entire Research office. Provide hiring support for hiring managers. Ensure department has all position descriptions, evaluations, and search files up to date.

40% – Financial and Budget Analysis: monitors/reconciles departmental revenues/expenditures to ensure transactions and adjustments are accurate, and reports on significant deviations. Provides back up support OCCD business functions. Collaborate with Business Centers on submission of all accounting/finance transaction processing. Assist in budget development as needed.

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Week 2: Experiences with Discrimination

You come across a news article reporting that your favorite company was faced with a public lawsuit in which they were accused of widespread discrimination against individuals from an ethnicity, culture, or belief system you associate with.

Would the outstanding claims of discrimination change the way you felt about the company? Would it influence your decisions to support that company? Would it change whether or not you applied to work for that company in the future? Why or why not?

If my favorite company was faced with a lawsuit regarding discrimination, I would have a strong moral decision to make. In understanding the research regarding discrimination, I think it is critical to see how the company is addressing the discrimination and the claims. Before I chose to support the company again, I would want to know what measures are being put in place to ensure these behaviors are not continuing. Depending on how the company is responding to these claims would impact my decision greater. While I would want to continue supporting the company, if they act like nothing happened or that it was a one time occurrence, I would no longer be able to support the company. Additionally, if the company was not speaking out on the issue, I would choose not to support the company. If they are not speaking out on the behaviors, then I would have concerns that they are not taking this situation seriously and are hoping that it will blow over. On the contrary, if the company acknowledges the issue, takes measures to increase diversity, increases the diversity of the staff, and continually educates their employees on discrimination and adverse impact, then I would choose to continue supporting the company. If the company was able to make strides to a more diverse workforce, I would consider still applying for a position. I would push the company to explain the measures they are taking to increase diversity in their workforce and how the results have been received by staff. I think it is important to hold organizations responsible for their actions and the actions that their staff are taking. For those reasons, I work to stay educated on the staffing and training practices of the companies that I support.

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Week 1: The Case for Recruitment and Selection

Why might organizations decide to allocate more resources toward marketing or product design rather than using those same resources to do a really good job in employee recruitment and selection?

Organizations may choose to allocate more resources toward marketing or product design because that could be their competitive differentiation from competitors. If a company is not looking to grow their workforce and instead is focused on creating new products or selling more of their current product, they may choose to allocate resources in order of their current need.

What are the potential strengths and weaknesses of an organization’s decision to not prioritize recruitment and selection in favor of a focus on other aspects of the business?

Potential strengths: Organizations that do not prioritize recruitment and selection probably have positions that are easy to train for, have low barriers of entry, and may have little impact on the company’s bottom line. They may also hire in a trial period that would allow the employer to test the hire in the role on a temporary basis. This then allows the organization to invest financial resources on other areas of the company that have a greater impact to the bottom line. It also allows the employer to see if the employee is going to be successful in the company in the long term. Organizations could have the ability to invest heavily in product development and create a product that “sells itself” allowing for nearly anyone to be successful in the sales role. Alternatively, if the organization is hiring for a call center customer service rep, they may have very automated scripts to follow or steps to take to alleviate the customer’s issue allowing for many different people to effectively fill the role.

Potential Weaknesses: There are some great weaknesses that come with not properly investing in the recruitment and selection process. The employer may make the incorrect hire leading to high costs of training, time fixing mistakes, and giving the employee additional training as needed. If the employee is unable to be successful in the role, then the organization will also have to replace the hire. This means that the employee, team, and company suffer because of the one bad hire. Additionally, organizations that are very niche or require heavy training and on-boarding resources will be set back further if the employee is unsuccessful in the position. If the employee feels that they are wrongfully terminated, the company could face further costs to settle with the former employee.

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Week 1: Job Application Experiences

Describe your experiences from the perspective of an applicant for the last job you for which you applied.

The last job that I applied to was for the position that I currently hold, HR Liaison at Oregon State University. When I was job searching, I was looking for a position that would allow me to work in a strategic role that had noticeable impact on the team. During the application stage, I submitted my resume, cover letter, and application materials. I was careful to clearly communicate how my experience has prepared me for the position and that I met the minimum and preferred qualifications. I was contacted to have an interview with the committee, which I accepted and had scheduled for the following week. On the day of the interview, I arrived at the office and checked in around 10 minutes before my scheduled interview time. Shortly after, I was called back and had the in-person interview. I answered questions regarding my experience, how I would react in specific situations, and how I deal with difficult customers or co-workers. To wrap up the interview, I was given the chance to ask the committee any questions. By the end of the week, I had heard back from the hiring manager and was offered the position.

Explain how your experiences during the job application process shaped your impression of the job you were applying for and your desire to work there (or in some cases to not work there).

Throughout the job application process, I knew that organizations similar to OSU were very critical in defining what their minimum qualifications were and I understood that they were not suggestions. Therefore, I was very clear, descriptive, and direct when stating what my qualifications were. During the interview process, I asked a variety of questions that addressed the impact of the position, the culture of the office and team, and what the future of this position would be. In hearing the responses, I could tell that this position would have the opportunity to have strategic impact in the office. I also was able to see the camaraderie among the interview committee. The hiring manager was very clear that this position would have a lot of change and growth with the organizational changes that were going to occur within the office and in the university. Throughout the process, I was shown that the team was very close and supportive of one another. I gained the sense that the hiring manager was trusting of her team and had no issues giving autonomy to her staff. Additionally, I felt that there was very clear information from the whole committee, even if it showed the challenges of the role. I felt like I knew what I was accepting when I accepted the position.