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Finding Jobs

So, you think recruiters might spend 4 or 5 minutes looking at your resume?  Not so, according to a recent study.  Eye tracking was used to determine what recruiters look at to choose you for an interview (or not).  They look at your name, present and previous position titles, start and end dates for those positions, and your education level.  Decision made.

Here’s the study by TheLadders

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body language dilbert strip

Comic strip by Scott Adams|

Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. In the following TED Talk (below) Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our chances for success.

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Amy Cuddy’s experiment with Harvard Business School students showed that standing for two minutes with their arms and elbows out and chin lifted before presentation or important job interview actually affects student performance. They chose students who lacked self-confidence or did not express themselves in classroom and measured their hormone levels before and after “power posing”. The findings were amazing! 120 seconds were enough to decrease student cortisol (stress hormone) levels by 25 percent and increase testosterone (dominance hormone) levels by 20 percent! Students felt more confident and performed better. But the most important thing is that it worked even if they “fake it”. As Amy Cuddy said: “Fake it till you become it”. Your body language shapes who you are.

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Before you go to the stressful situation  (presentation or job interview) try “power posing” for two minutes and tell us if it worked!

body language dilbert comic strip

Comic strip by United Feature Syndicate, Inc.|

Guest Editor: Saule Simonaityte

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self branding

Comic strip by Scot Adams

Personal branding is your chance to be unique and stand out. If you understand your strengths, your values and skills then you can separate yourself from others. Strong personal brand will attract new people and opportunities. Personal branding helps differentiate yourself from your peers and increase your visibility and presence in organization. It also helps to achieve your personal and professional goals.

Here is a short quiz to estimate the strength of your personal brand. When you will submit your answers you’ll get a list of actions how to improve your personal brand.

The following info-graphic explains how to do personal branding with social media.

personal branding

Personal Branding With Social Media Infographic by

In addition you can try these amazing tools:

Imagine, how well you can brand yourself by unifying your web- presence and sharing your ideas!

Here is a great article explaining the benefits of personal branding.


Guest Editor: Saule Simonaityte

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There is no doubt that the job market is changing. In this great episode of TED Talks economist Andrew McAfee suggests that mobile humanoid robots might actually take some of our jobs. How is it good news to us? According to McAfee it is a good news, because:
1. Technological progress is what allows us to continue to increase volume and quality of goods while prices go down;
2. Once the androids start doing some jobs we get freed up from drudgery and toil which creates an entirely different society.
“A society where the creators and the discoverers and the performers and innovators come together with their financiers to talk about issues, enlighten and provoke each other”.

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We have amazing new possibilities but they also create some concerns because part of the society will not be able to keep their jobs. It can be solved by encouraging entrepreneurship and teaching students appropriate skills but what can you do in order to have a sustainable career in the Age of Machines?

In a recent article published by Harvard Business Review, Monique Valcour states  that “a sustainable career is dynamic and flexible; it features continuous learning , periodic renewal, the security that come from employability, and harmonious fit with your skills, interests, and values”. Moreover, “a sustainable career is built upon the ability to show that you can fill a need that someone is willing to pay for”.

In my interview with STG CTO for Public Sector Timothy Durniak, when I asked him how he managed to build a successful career with IBM for more than 31 years he said “I knew that it was important to be T- shaped as well as Comb-shaped, that is why I continuously improved my skills”. Along the way he has been a software developer, solution tester, information developer, solution architect, solution trainer, help desk leader, methodologist, process engineer, project manager, infrastructure architect and enterprise architect. Having seen all sides of what it takes to deliver uniquely positioned IT solutions, Timothy Durniak now serves as Chief Technology Officer for Public Sector of the Systems and Technology group focusing on government, smarter cities and education industries within that. He constantly develops new skills based on what value he can bring to the company. The secret of doing so successfully is the method he is using.  He takes an expertise in one set of “teeth” of his “comb” (enterprise architecture, infrastructure architecture, system thinking) and applies it to similar problems in another domain (modernizing social services) thus creating a new portion of the “comb”. which is the perfect example of the comb-shaped thinking.

comb-shaped person

Being Comb-shaped requires broad base with multiple expertise areas which gives the shape of a comb. Those skills are hard to maintain but they would help you to be in charge of your career.

If you would like to craft a sustainable career in the age of Technology and Information:

  • Think of yourself as your own career advisor.  Learn new skills to become specialist in many areas. Craft your career choices based on where technology is going. Don’t get stuck with one specific role;
  • Find ways you could add value to your employer and propose solutions;
  • Seek opportunities to work with people who can teach you something, seek for a mentor who would inspire and direct you the right way.


Guest Editor: Saule Simonaityte

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Since you are reading this on an IBM official blog, I bet you would remember Deep Blue, the amazing chess player ‘trained’ by IBM. And of course, since you are such an IBM-fanatic, you would also know that Deep Blue is no ordinary human. It’s actually a machine; a chess-playing computer that supposedly beat former world champion Garry Kasparov in 1997. Either he was a sore loser or his Russian senses were tingling, Garry accused IBM of cheating by allowing human intervention during gameplay which was against the rules. Nobody really knows if that was true or not since IBM later tore down the machine before any real investigation could be initiated (There’s always something between Americans and Russians it seems…).

Earlier on in the late 18th century, a machine known as the Mechanical Turk (a predecessor to Deep Blue) was invented by Wolfgang von Kempelen to impress the Empress of Austria. After beating numerous chess players, however, it was uncovered as a hoax: a real human chess master was actually hiding inside it and making it looked as if the Mechanical Turk had a life of its own and an intelligence unparalleled by any human being.

But why all this talk about getting humans to perform the task of machines in a time where machines are supposed to be legitimately doing the work for humans? Well it turns out that there are some tasks that computers couldn’t do (I think I heard a loud resonating “WHAT?” in the background), and has to be done manually by humans. And this is what the Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk) is all about!

In essence, MTurk is an online crowdsourcing marketplace which allows job seekers (called workers) to earn money by doing tasks (posted by people known as requesters) that no computers can accomplish. These tasks usually include things like choosing the best picture for a particular theme or putting tags to pictures so that these pictures can show up when a person types in a particular keyword on Amazon (I believe this was how the MTurk was first conceived). Actually now you can also find tasks like transcribing or programming which may be accomplish-able by machines as well, but still seems to be have a better result if carried out by humans.

So just to give you an idea how much a task would pay from the perspective of a worker, copying text from a business card would be around $0.02 while answering a surveys would be like $0.16. Here’s a short list of tasks that may interest you:

Proofreading a real estate transaction: $0.10

Identifying companies from a photo: $0.01

Voicemail transcription: $30.00

Writing three 400-words articles about travelling: $12.00

Flagging pornographic content: $0.10 (this should be excellent for a lot of readers here)

No matter which tasks you choose, you can see that Service Thinking is applied at MTurk. Value is being co-created between the requesters and workers; a modular business structure is present where a requester can “outsource” tasks to a community of workers; a GLO-MO-SO platform is pretty obvious; you can refer to my earlier blog to think about how the other chevrons of Service Thinking is applied at MTurk.

As quoted from a reviewer who posted on Youtube, MTurk is not going to pay big bucks, but at the very least, it puts money in your pocket.

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Yup yet another legit money-making website for you guys out there looking to pay your rent while you look for a full-time job.



IBM Intern; Hult International Business School


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