Monday, January 4, 2016

Things You Need To Be Doing NOW To Appear Professional

It's beginning to look a like like job season. With my final semester of undergrad (holy crap when did that happen?!?) about to begin, I've decided to share my tips and tricks for looking more professional to potential employers. enjoy! and may the odds be ever in your favor. 

1. Update your voicemail
You're sending out job applications like they're Merry Christmas text messages, make sure that if they really like what you've sent them, you continue to impress them when they try to reach you. Still have that trick voicemail where you say "Hey" and wait a few seconds to make the caller thing its actually you on the line? Prospective employers don't like that. You're wasting their time and come across as foolish. Record a professional greeting and you'll have a mountain of voicemails lined up for you to return their calls.

2. Create an email signature
I love a good email signature. It makes me feel incredibly professional even if the information in it isn't saying that I work at the White House or anything of any importance. Here's what mine looks like:

Rachel Berzins
Advertising and Public Relations

Phi Mu Fraternity- Rho Eta Chapter
Grand Valley State University

Simple, but effective. And it draws the reader's eye to the most important part, my name. Some people like to include phone numbers and emails and address as well, but for the majority of the emails I send out, its not necessary.

3. LinkedIn Is Your Best Friend
This has been a key component for my job search and it needs to be updated frequently. Make sure you have an appropriate profile picture, up-to-date information, and that it's easy to contact you!

4. Check Yourself like your Grandmother would
We all love to have a good time, but its not totally necessary to let everyone and their mother know that you did. Maybe a picture of you puking on the bathroom floor isn't really necessary as your profile picture, or you doing a keg stand might not be the best choice for your Twitter header. I'm all about the "you do you" mantra, but I don't know if this one is going to work out in your favor.

5. Be Yourself- cheesy, but true
The worst thing you can do is to try and cover up what you are truly like in order to appear professional and get a job. Don't become so stiff that they think they're hiring a robot. They understand that each job is a person and want someone fun they can work with! Make sure your personality shines through with whatever you do. It'll make all the difference.

and there you have it! my hidden secrets. go out there and use them wisely.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

two thousand and fifteen: year in review

Here we are yet again. Another year has past, quicker than the one before it, and here I am, as always, wondering how it slipped by so fast. 

This is it. This next year is going to be the beginning of the rest of my life and I do not know how I feel about it. 
I'm graduating college.
How in the world did I become old enough to do that? I still feel like I'm 12 years old and that I'm going to wake up one of these days and realize the past 9 years were all a dream.

I'm excited but apprehensive.
joyful but timid.
ready but not.
There were a lot of things I was taught this year, whether it be willingly or something that I had to learn the hard way. Regardless those lessons I learned molded me into a better, more optimistic, and faithful version of myself than I have ever been.

The most important lessons I learned boiled down to this:

  • being the positive one in a situation is much better than being the negative one.
  • you are capable of even more than you think if you would only put your mind to it
  • you don't always have to jump off a cliff to go out of your comfort zone, sometimes you only have to take one step outside of it. all that matters is that you're outside of it
  • you have got to realize how much you're worth and demand that respect from everyone, never settle for less than what you deserve, even if that means waiting
  • a little bit of hope and whole lot of prayer can move mountains
It's amazing how much I've grown from just last year, and how much I anticipate to grow in this upcoming year. 

so here's to new beginnings and fresh starts and a year full of change. 

two thousand and sixteen, I'm ready for ya.


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

BlondesAbroad2015: Inching through Ireland

Guess who's back, back again, Shady's back, tell a friend. WOOOO! We're back with the last of the European cities in my Extravaganza series and I am so excited! We're going all over Ireland today and I can't wait to tell you all about it! 

But have you seen London & Paris yet? You don't want to miss those! GO check them out and come right back here for Ireland!

Woo! You're back! (or you were already up to date, regardless welcome!)

So Ireland. What a trip. I had no expectations for Ireland because I didn't really know what to expect, but goodness gracious was I pleasantly surprised. Okay that was an understatement. I was blown away with how much fun it was. Like Holy Toledo.

The trip started off great as we got to board the plane from the tarmac and Carlee had never been happier. Haha it was one of her goals in life and I got to be there when it happened, #Blessed. We arrived in Ireland and loaded onto a few passenger vans to get to our hostel in downtown Dublin. I believe the airport was only about a half hour drive from downtown and it ended up taking about an two hours to get there. I literally took a 45 minute nap and I woke up and we still weren't even close. We probably should have just walked, eh, hindsight is 20/20 right? Anyways, after grabbing a bite to eat, the activity for the evening in our little group was a pub crawl! I don't know if I've ever participated in something as fun as that night was. The pubs in Dublin are completely different in the best way possible than anything else. They have live bands playing everywhere, dancing, sing-alongs,- I can't even describe how wonderful it was. If you ever get the opportunity to go to Dublin or just Ireland in general- go, don't hesitate, just go. you won't regret it.
But word to the wise, if you don't like Guinness (both of my hands are in the air right now) you will be frowned upon slightly by the locals, but just accept it and go order a "Sex in the Forest" because it's delicious and you will actually enjoy your drink instead of spitting it out upon it touching your lips. (Carlee and I are fully guilty for that)

Also fun fact- the last bar that the pub crawl took us to, I don't know the name, was where Ed Sheehan's afterparty was that night because he was playing in Dublin! And our leader ended up meeting him later that night too- #Jealous.

On our official first full day in Dublin, we did many of the local touristy things- walking tour of Trinity College, Dublin Castle, and the Guinness Storehouse of course, and finishing up the day at a restaurant called The Storehouse for some Irish Cottage Pie. The wonderful thing about the restaurants in Dublin is that they also have live music all the time, and the musicians are so unbelievably good, and they just do it for fun- they have day jobs and do other things but just love to come out and play at night. It's amazing. And so this night was no exception.

I found this excerpt from my journal that I think sums up this night in the most perfect way possible:
You know those few times in life where you just know that you're going to remember this forever? That was tonight. I was sitting in the basement of a bar in Dublin, Ireland, with 10 people I had only met a few weeks ago, listening to 2 Irish men sing their hearts out to Mumford & Sons and Cotton-Eyed Joe, with me, who couldn't be happier than that moment. Life is so unbelievably awesome and I'm so beyond grateful to be able to be on this journey.

Let's talk about the Cliffs of Moher for a hot second. *Jaw drops* Words cannot describe how incredible and awe-inspiring and magnificent and indescribable this moment was when I first saw the Cliffs. Let me back up a little. We drove from Dublin to the Cliffs-which is about a 5 or 6 hour drive, you're literally driving across Ireland to do that- and so we left bright and early. As we were getting closer to the cliffs, it continually was getting foggier and foggier. And by the time we arrived at the Cliffs, we couldn't see 20 feet in front of us. We were incredibly bummed. We got onto the grounds and started walking towards what we thought were the Cliffs, we seriously could not see anything so we were just hoping that the hill we were climbing up was the right way to go, and were trying to make out even anything that we could see. After talking with several people around us, and sending up many silent prayers, a row of lighter fog appeared and the fog started to slowly rise to reveal the cliffs. I've never seen something more beautiful than the slow reveal that the fog did to show off the entire Cliffs. 

The crazy and cool thing about the cliffs is that there's a visitors center area where it's paved and a fence and all that jazz, but just a little ways down, there's a fence that says "Proceed at your own risk" and it's literally only grass, mud, you, and the cliffs. There's no fence, the edge is right there. If you slip, you're basically done for. It was incredibly awesome and frightening at the same time. I was so completely awestruck & humbled the entire time we were at the Cliffs. I can't even begin to describe it. I don't know if it's one of the seven wonders of the world, but it should be. 

Our trip had 2 more days that were full of bus rides, monasteries, almost getting kicked out of pubs because our 50 year old friends forgot how to behave in a bar, and plane delays, but eventually we made it back to the homeland of London with memories that I will never ever forget.

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