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Body Language – Picking Up and Understanding Nonverbal Signals

Today we are going to look at Body Language – the art of non verbal communication.

What Is Body Language?

Put simply, body language is the unspoken element of communication that we use to reveal our true feelings and emotions. Our gestures, facial expressions and posture. When we are able to “read” these signs, we can use it to our advantage.

For example, it can help us to understand the complete message of what someone is trying to say to us, and to enhance our awareness of people’s reactions to what we say and do.

We can also use it to adjust our own body language so that we appear more positive, engaging and approachable.

How to Read Negative Body Language.

Being aware of negative body language in others can allow you to pick up on unspoken issues or bad feelings. So, in this section, we’ll highlight some negative nonverbal signals that you should look out for.

Difficult Conversations and Defensiveness

Difficult or tense conversations  are an uncomfortable fact of life at work. Perhaps you’ve had to deal with a difficult customer, or needed to talk to someone about his or her poor performance . Or maybe you’ve negotiated a major contract.

Ideally, these situations would be resolved calmly. But, often they are complicated by feelings of nervousness, stress, defensiveness, or even anger. And, though we may try to hide them, these emotions often show through in our body language.

For example, if someone is exhibiting one or more of the following behaviours, he will likely be disengaged, disinterested or unhappy:

  • Arms folded in front of the body
  • Minimal or tense facial expression
  • Body turned away from you
  • Eyes downcast, maintaining little contact

Being aware of these signs can help you to adjust what you say and how you say it, so you can make him feel more at ease and receptive to your viewpoint

  • Arms relaxed
  • Friendly facial expression
  • Good eye contact
  • Engaging posture

When you use positive body language, it can add strength  to the verbal messages or ideas that you want to convey, and help you to avoid sending mixed or confusing signals

How to Project Positive Body Language

In this section, we’ll describe some basic postures that you can adopt to project self-confidence and openness.

Making a Confident First Impression

These tips can help you to adjust your body language so that you make a great first impression:

  • Have an open posture. Be relaxed, but don’t slouch! Sit or stand upright and place your hands by your sides. Avoid standing with your hands on your hips, as this will make you appear larger, which can communicate aggression or a desire to dominate.
  • Use a firm handshake. But don’t get carried away! You don’t want it to become awkward or, worse, painful for the other person. If it does, you’ll likely come across as rude or aggressive.
  • Maintain good eye contact. Try to hold the other person’s gaze for a few seconds at a time. This will show her that you’re sincere and engaged. But, avoid turning it into a staring match!
  • Avoid touching your face. There’s a common perception that people who touch their faces while answering questions are being dishonest. While this isn’t always true, it’s best to avoid fiddling with your hair or touching your mouth or nose, particularly if your aim is to come across as trustworthy.

We previously published a blog on Soft skills – “it’s not what you say but how you say it that’s important” – Check it out!

The Great Reveal: How to Answer the “Tell Me About Yourself” Interview Question

This question is generally asked at the opening of an interview – it can be a great asset to answer it correctly but it is one that you can get very wrong. It can also be framed, take me through your CV, outlining the areas of your work experience and competencies in relation to the role of…

This question strikes fear in people and they commonly say – “I don’t know what the employer is looking for” – You will know by reading the Job Advert and the Person Specification carefully – underline the key words: Prepare, Prepare, Prepare! If you prepare you’ll be surprised how easily you will sail through your answer.

Know The Buyer!

The employer has listed what they want in the Job Advertisement – it’s up to you to tell them that you have the required skills / attributes – use their words in your answer.

The best answer will begin by briefly telling the employer what they are looking for and then outline your main selling points that explains that you have what they require. When you focus on your relevant qualifications for the job you increase your chances of convincing the interviewer that you are ready for the challenge.

Why Interviewers Ask You the “Tell Me About Yourself” Question

From the interviewer’s perspective, this enquiry is one of the best for finding out if a candidate is suited to the role. It is worth remembering that the hiring manager wants to like you; it is in their interest to find the best candidates for their company. Recruitment is an expensive business and they want to get it right first time. The idea is to get you talking and to hear from you that you are the right person for the job.

How to Answer “Tell Me About Yourself”

You can use the most frequently stated do’s and don’ts in job interviews to help you avoid ineffectively answering any interview question. The don’ts when answering this particular question can be summed up:

Don’t

  • Regurgitate your CV
  • Be too modest OR too arrogant
  • Include irrelevant information such as your favourite colour or wine
  • Discuss aspects of your career that have little or no relevance to the role or industry in question

You need to answer this question with laser-like precision, and it is a much simpler task than you think. The best answer to any common interview question is short and succinct. You may need to inject just enough personality to get the hiring manager to like you but resist the urge to ramble, brag, or hide in your shell. A great answer involves the following:

Do

  • Detail ‘Who’ You Are: Begin by outlining who you are professionally and throw in a couple of strengths
  • Provides an Overview of Your Skills: Your interviewer may not remember your CV, so remind them by highlighting a few key skills that make you a good fit for the job
  • Explain Why You Want the Job: If we’re cynical, the main reason to get a job is to pay your rent and not starve to death, but the interviewer already knows that! Instead, outline that you want a new challenge and believe that the company and the job offer’s it.

Things to Avoid When Answering “Tell Me About Yourself”

Perhaps the biggest mistake interviewees make when answering this question is to go off on a tangent. The result is an answer that is an incoherent and rambling mess. You know it is a common interview question, so there is no excuse for not creating a ‘scripted’ answer and sticking to it. Remember, it is usually one of the first questions asked, so there is little danger of repeating information already mentioned in the interview.

In any case, here are a few things you should avoid mentioning:

  • Religious or Political Affiliations: Avoid at all costs. You have no idea if the interviewer shares your views, so it is best to keep a lid on it
  • Personal Information: This means anything you wouldn’t ordinarily tell a stranger. It also relates to information about your family

Frequently Asked Interview Questions Related to ‘Tell Me About Yourself”

  • While the following questions are not necessarily the same as “Tell me about yourself,” they are all designed to gain a greater insight into ‘who’ you are personally and professionally.

 

  • “Describe Yourself”
  • “Why Would You Like to Work for Us?”
  • “What Makes You Unique?”
  • “Outline What You Do in Your Current Position.”
  • “Where Do You See Yourself In 5/10 Years?”
  • “What Motivates You?”
  • “What Are You Passionate About?”
  • “Why Should We Hire You?”
  • “Why Do You Want This Job?”
  • “Why Did You Leave Your Last Job?”

In summary: Read the Job Advert / Person Specification; if you have what they are looking for or as near as possible begin by outlining what they want and proceed to tell them that you have the skills, experience, and drive to successfully do the Job.

Good Luck!

Waterford City Local Employment Service continues to offer excellent value

Ger Walsh – Manager of Waterford City Local Employment Service (LES) – has welcomed the finding of research commissioned by the DEASP that the not for-profit Local Employment Service (LES) nationally is successfully achieving full-time employment placement for 28.8% of those referred to them annually.

In addition, whilst working with those with lower qualification levels and most in need of employment supports, the LES has progressed the majority of its remaining caseload to part-time jobs and other pathways to work such as further training and employment schemes.

The research also found that a very high proportion of LES clients who responded to Indecon’s research “indicated that their attendance with a Local Employment Service had been beneficial, with 75% stating that their engagement had motivated them to find work or to undertake further education or training.”

The service also received significant endorsement from the employers who engage with it, with 89% of respondents indicating that their engagement with an LES had helped them to find suitable candidates for available jobs, while 83% of employers stated that the LES provided an efficient recruitment service for their organisation. “The LES approach is serving jobseekers and the state well. At this time of welcome falls in unemployment, there are still many who need significant support to achieve job-readiness and access the labour market”, said Ger.

“We work intensively with people in their local community, helping them to address any barriers to employment including skills needs, mental health issues, self-esteem and personal discipline”.

“Placing almost 30% of referrals into full-time employment is a significant achievement but it must also be recognised that for many of the today’s jobseekers, progression to a part-time job, internship, employment scheme or further training are valid pathways to full-time employment and career development”.

He continued: “The cost per full-time employment placement is €2544 and this reduces significantly when part-time positions are taken into account. The savings to the state in welfare payments as well as the transfer to the state in new tax income are considerable. In this context, the figures represent excellent value for money and demonstrate the benefits of collaboration between the state and not-for-profit community organisations.”

At present, the Public Employment Service (PES) is delivered either by the Department’s own Intreo service or by private contractors through Jobpath or by community-based, not-for-profit companies operating the Local Employment Service (LES) and Jobs Clubs.

The Indecon Report heralds a reconfiguration of these services in 2020. Whilst preparing to respond to the upcoming changes, Irish Local Development Network’s Marie Price Bolger cautions on the lessons from other sectors that followed a privatisation route,

“The value of community-based, not-for-profit employment services must be protected in any reconfiguration of Public Employment Services. They give an efficient, accessible service to jobseekers, they give transparency and value-for money to the taxpayer, they give the greatest level of control and agility to the funder, and their track record is endorsed by employers. Whilst all services need to continually adapt to changing circumstances, these key advantages must be safeguarded in any reconfiguration.”

Let’s continue to Get Waterford Working

IT’S OFFICIAL: WATERFORD CITY LOCAL EMPLOYMENT SERVICE OFFERS EXCELLENT VALUE TO JOBSEEKERS, EMPLOYERS AND THE STATE

Follow the link below to hear how great the Local Employment Service are doing in Waterford to support Jobseekers find jobs and businesses to find staff.

Local Employment Service (LES) – Irish Local Development Network Press Release

Please like and share on Facebook – Let’s continue to Get Waterford Working!!!

JobsPlus: New Jobs – Less Cost

Employers, are you hiring?

Jobseekers are you looking to give yourself the edge over other applicants?

Government Grants of €7,500 and €10,000 are available

Not many things in life are free but here’s one: JobsPlus

What is JobsPlus? It is an incentive from the Department of Social Protection. It is designed to reward employers who offer employment of over 30 hours per week to recruits from the live register. Grants of €7,500 and €10,000 are available. The majority Waterford City Local Employment Service’s clients are eligible for JobsPlus.

How can I register? There are two parts. Firstly, Employers must register for JobsPlus, by following the link below:

https://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/secure/jobsplus-employer.aspx

When employers are approved they will receive an email confirming that they have been approved. The status of all applications can be attained by calling 071 9672535 / 071 9672583.

Secondly, Jobseekers must register their interest by accessing the link below:

https://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/secure/jobsplus-employee.aspx

When the Jobseeker is approved they will receive a letter of acceptance in the post. The status of all applications can be attained by calling 071 9672535 / 071 9672583.

How much is the incentive? A grant of €7,500 is payable over two years for Jobseekers on the live register over 12 months and €10,000 for Jobseekers on the live register more than 36 months.

However, in addition to the above A grant of €7,500 is payable to:

Jobseekers under 25 years of age and on the live register for at least 4 months in the previous 6 months.

Former one parent family customers whose youngest child is 7 years of age or over who transfers to the live register and are now in receipt of Jobseekers allowance transition payment and they have NO qualifying period.

Persons with refugee status and in receipt of Jobseekers allowance also have NO qualifying period.

A grant of €10,000 is payable to: Jobseekers over 50 years of age who are on the live register and have been at least 12 months unemployed in the previous 18 months.

How will the incentive be paid? The incentive will be payable monthly in arrears, over a two year period by Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT), by the Department of Social Protection.

Interested? Employers, follow the link to become approved for JobsPlushttps://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/secure/jobsplus-employer.aspx

Jobseekers to increase your chances of employment follow the link – https://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/secure/jobsplus-employer.aspx.

Waterford City Local Employment Service have almost 5000 followers on Facebook, we provide a free and confidential service to businesses of all sizes and are designed to make the recruitment process easy and hassle-free. If you have any questions call Ger on 051-304951 / 086 142550.

 

A New Year – A New Start

Great News!  From New Year’s Day, people in receipt of Jobseeker’s Benefit who take on subsidiary seasonal and casual work can earn up to €7,500 a year without impacting their rights to their Benefit.

We hear from jobseekers that casual work brings massive complications when they have to sign off and on etc., so it can be difficult to accept short term work.  Changes like this will hopefully give more flexibility and encouragement to people who want to work and will also help employers who need casual staff on an Adhoc Basis. We all know that a job is far more than a pay check and hopefully initiatives like this will help to secure more long term opportunities for all.

Read more on official announcement here; http://www.welfare.ie/en/pressoffice/Pages/pr211218.aspx

Employer Services and Testimonials

EMPLOYER TESTIMONIALS

We can help with free job advertising, we can put forward suitable candidates for vacancies and we can work with you to help you access incentives and resources that are available to business from employment support agencies.

Please see below for recent testimonials from some of the local businesses we have worked with.

Ballyogue Stud, Kilmacthomas, Co Waterford

Ballyogue Stud got in touch with us to help them fill a vacancy for a Yard/Stable Hand. We advertised the position on the 10th of October 2018 which got a great response, John was delighted with the applications he got and by the 23rd of October 2018 he came back to us to say that he had found the perfect candidate for his vacancy.

“WCLES website is very user friendly and got an immediate response – certainly worth considering if you are looking for staff. The team at WCLES couldn’t be more helpful.”

John Lenihan
Ballyogue Stud
Ballinabanogue,
Kilmacthomas,
Co Waterford

M.J. Flanagan Ltd, Industrial Park, Waterford

Flanagan’s Fish Merchants got in touch with us regarding a vacancy for a Counter Assistant. The position was advertised on the 20th September 2018 and attracted over 4,500 views on our Facebook Page. Flanagan’s were delighted with the response and the position was filled by the start of October.

Waterford Jobs
Waterford Jobs

O’Briens Wines – Ardkeen Stores, Waterford

O’Briens Wines in Ardkeen Stores contacted us on the 16th August 2018 regarding a part-time sales assistant opportunity. We got a great response for this vacancy and the post was filled after interviews by the 28th August.

Waterford Jobs
Waterford Jobs

Under New Management

Hi, if you are reading this you are WELCOME to our Website!

Ger Walsh
Ger Walsh Manager WCLES

Allow me to introduce myself – my name is Ger Walsh and I am the recently appointed manager of Waterford City Local Employment Service (WCLES) – located in Westgate Retail Park, Tramore Road, Waterford. We are a free, friendly and confidential service that is available to people in receipt of a Social Welfare Payment or signing for Credits.

At a recent event organised by Waterford Micro Business Network, Dee Hutchinson inspirational coach and award winning leader presented a talk – The Secret to Achieving Your Goals – ARE YOU READY? This question started me thinking!

It appears that the NUMBER 1 REASON FOR NOT GETTING THE RESULTS YOU WANT is… you are simply Not Ready.

Dee broke it down into four categories:

PHYSICAL READINESS – Getting a job takes time so don’t give up.

FINANCIAL READINESS – Will it pay me to work?  Check out: The Benefits of Working on the DEASP Website. This is a user friendly tool that gives you an instant comparison of the difference between your potential in-work and your current out-of-work payments based on information provided by you.

MENTAL READINESS – This is the self-doubt we all have… Will I be good enough? Will I have the Skills / Knowledge / Experience? What if I’m found out! As they say, fake it till you make it or get the training you need.

EMOTIONAL READINESS – The old Chestnuts… Fear of failure / rejection / success.  Without risk there is NO REWARD. Go for IT!!!! Life has thought me to aim for the Stars and what harm if you stop off at the Moon. You are on that journey for the Job of your Dreams.

Our qualified Employment Guidance Officers at WCLES are available to help and guide you to BE READY to find that Job, Training or Education that you always dreamed of.

To check out your eligibility to use our service call in or phone 051 304951

Employer Breakfast Briefing

We are very excited to be taking part in an Employer Breakfast Briefing with Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP), Waterford Chamber of Commerce, Waterford Chamber Skillnet and our colleagues in Waterford Area Partnership next Tuesday 24th October.

The event, which is free to attend, is due to take place at Viking Hotel at 7.45AM 

Viking Hotel
Viking Hotel, Venue for Employer Breakfast Briefing

DEASP will host a breakfast briefing for Employers to introduce a number of free and easy-to-access services. 

As part of the morning, we at WCLES will introduce our free employer services, such as free Job advertising and vacancy matching. We will demonstrate our user friendly services and we will explain how we can work with employers.

DEASP have a wide array of employer services including:

  1. Jobs Plus

A financial subsidy paid to an employer who recruits a candidate who is in receipt of a jobseeker payment.

  1. First Steps Internship

An internship programme that employers can access where they offer an internship of three months to those under the age of 25.  While on the internship, the intern retains their jobseeker payment and get an internship allowance from DEASP.

  1. Recruitment Service

A recruitment service that an employer can access at no cost to them.  DEASP will promote the job vacancy, collect CVs and filter applications for employers.

  1. European Employment Services (EURES)

For those hard to fill vacancies an employer can access the Department’s EURES service at no cost to them.  This allows a business to recruit from the other countries in the European Economic Area.  Through the EURES service an eligible applicant may be able to get assistance to allow them to relocate to Ireland to take up an employment opportunity

Tea/Coffee and light refreshments will be served.

Booking is essential:  To book please contact Kelly Cummins at kelly.cummins@waterfordchamber.ie