Khrista Trerotola

Wondering Where I’ve Been?

In Skill Sets, Social Influence on June 22, 2010 at 4:00 pm

No, it’s not what you think. I didn’t get a job. I will most certainly write a post about my new position when I land one. Bloggers promise.

So where have I been?
Blogging on another platform. Don’t worry, don’t worry. I’m not abandoning my loyal followers here nor the WordPress app (which I do love), but rather tryin’ something new. Experimenting. After all, the concept of For Hire is all about experimenting with social media.

That platform is BrightFuse, a social network with a build-in blogging platform. I like to describe BrightFuse as a sort of Facebook-meets-LinkedIn platform, a tee-shirt-and-jeans professional networking site. It’s more personal, more expression than LinkedIn, but not as bare-it-all as Facebook; basically, the concept is pretty similar to that of For Hire: Serve as an Attachment to a resume, reveal more about yourself, skills, talents, and interests than a resume can, showcase your personality, and keep your writing skills fresh.

Along with a blogging feature and in addition to the capability of creating a in-depth profile (think: LinkedIn), there are plenty of groups surrounding an array of interests and a Q&A feature (where you shouldn’t fear asking questions like, “Does my resume have to be one page” and “What should I wear to an interview?”).

From a blogging standpoint, I’ve found that a post from BrightFuse can warrant more responses and feedback than a post on a standard platform because you’re interacting with an interested and engaged audience from Day One (especially when, like me, you’re writing about getting hired and job-searching).

You can check out some of my BrightFuse posts here.

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Night at the Pops Benefits Alzheimer’s Association

In Public Relations, Skill Sets, Volunteer Work on June 2, 2010 at 2:03 pm

For more information
Betsy Fitzgerald-Campbell, VP Communications & Public Affairs
617.868.6718
Betsy.fitzgerald-campbell@alz.org

Night at the Pops Benefits Alzheimer’s Association

BOSTON (May 26, 2010) — A gala night with the Boston Pops will benefit programs and research of the Alzheimer’s Association.  “Red, Hot and Thirty, An Evening with Cole Porter,” the Alzheimer’s Association’s 30th anniversary celebration at the Pops is set for Wednesday, June 9.  The Pops performance of Cole Porter classics with Keith Lockhart conducting starts at 8 p.m., but the 1930’s themed gala begins at 5:30.

NewsCenter 5’s Gail Huff, who lost her grandmother to Alzheimer’s disease in early 2003 at age 100, returns as honorary chair for the eighth year in a row.  Alzheimer’s Association board member Kathy Simon of Medfield is event chair.

The event recognizes the 30th anniversary of the Massachusetts/New Hampshire Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. The local chapter was one of four founding chapters of the national Alzheimer’s Association and remains a leader in innovative education, research and public awareness programs.

“We do not yet have a cure, but we are optimistic about the research that is being conducted,” said James Wessler, President/CEO of the Alzheimer’s Association, MA/NH Chapter.  “We are so grateful to the dedicated volunteers who organize events like the Night at the Pops, because they are helping us fight this disease.”

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 5.3 million Americans have progressive, fatal disease. It is the sixth leading cause of death of adults.

The evening begins with a cocktail and buffet reception and live auction.  Tickets are $235 each for floor seats or $1,100 for a table of five.  Proceeds benefit the research and programs of the Alzheimer’s Association. For more information visit www.alz.org/MANH or call 617.868.6718. ##

A Job Seeker’s Hierarchy of Needs

In Conversations on May 20, 2010 at 12:26 pm

There comes a point in some job seekers’ search when they’re delivered the unfathomable (and absolutely dreaded) news: Your unemployment has run out.

“Ma’am, I’m so sorry to tell you this, but your unemployment has run out,” she tells me over the phone, after I had to wait an upwards of an hour to talk to a person (and not a computer). My fear of this scenario actually coming true replays in my head from time-to-time.

“Ummm, what do you mean run out? I was told I had until September, and then come September, if I am still unemployed, I could probably re-file then.”

“Well whoever told you that was wrong. Check back with us though, we are waiting for Congress to pass something and then you might be able to get more money. But for now, just keep checking our website and watch the news. I’m so sorry.”

whhhhh But I ehhhh don’t get it. whh whhhh Why? whhhh What about the Federal package?”

“You’re on the Federal. The money has run out. There’s none left. I’m so so sorry.”

“Yep. (audible gasp of air, holding back a tear) Thank You.”

Luckily, when my fear came to life and I had this very conversation with a woman at the Department of Unemployment Assistance yesterday, the information she had provided me with ended up being the wrong information. I do, in fact, have some time left to continue to claim benefits–but this, I didn’t find out for a few hours after talking with the woman, when I went to the Department for a further explanation and for any sort of available guidance, advice, and/or support. And I must admit, these were a few very rough hours–and put things into perspective. Things that are at the very foundation of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

What happens if I don’t find a job before unemployment is up? I refuse to settle for just any job–and stand by my previous posts explaining my search for a satisfying job (See Zen and the Art of Job Identification and I Don’t Really Like Sitting Still). But, let’s face it, I need some sort of monetary help to support my current life, to meet those needs at the base of Maslow’s pyramid: Food, shelter (my rent). Monetary support even plays a role in supporting my job search: I need to pay my Verizon bill to continue internet and telephone service, to communicate with potential employers, to search for jobs, and to brand myself; I need to pay my NStar bill to continue my electrical service, which powers my computer, my phone charger, and lights. I think we all get my drift here…

Financial advisors always say to have a back-up fund in the case of these kinds of emergencies–a “what if” account. I’ve seen a lot of articles with this sort of advice published across a spectrum of women’s mags these past couple of years. But what I haven’t found much of is articles giving advice to those who never had the chance–or the income–to actually save any money in this sort of “what if” saving account. Everyone is broke when they’re 25,” someone once told me. “Living paycheck-to-paycheck,” I responded, “is a lot different from being broke and having nothing coming in.”

I’m savvy and I have complete confidence in myself, so if I ever really do find myself in this position, I know that I will figure something out (As Maslow would say, that is my Esteem). And I know that I have my family and friends there to support me–perhaps not monetarily but certainly for meeting certain Maslow needs (shelter, food, emotional support…). (And, according to Maslow, my family and friends are my Love/Belonging.) What would you do? How does one effectively balance her goal of career satisfaction (Self-Actualization, says Maslow) while worrying about her Physiological and Safety (both Maslow) needs?

As I continue to re-read one of my favorite and most influential books, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, I continue to find parallels between Robert M. Pirsig’s text and my search for a satisfying job for which I am passionate. Here’s the latest:

“This inner peace of min occurs on three levels of understanding… But value quietness, in which one has no wandering desires at all but simply performs the acts of his life without desire, that seems the hardest.”

And as I’ve said before, that’s one thing I don’t want in my job–or in my life. I don’t want to do my job Because I have to but Because I want to. And I certainly don’t want to just go through the motions.