Ideas for upskilling from home

Thanks to Covid-19, workers across the globe have had to get used to doing their jobs differently. It hasn’t been easy for everyone, but it has led many to reassess their priorities and consider possible new career paths. In fact, research from jobs board Totaljobs in December 2020 showed that more than 8 out of 10 workers were actively looking for new roles. If you’re one of them, now is a good time to identify new skills to help you get where you’d like to go. Read on for some ideas for upskilling from home.

Expanding your skillset

‘Upskilling’ means adding relevant competencies to your existing skillset to help you reach the next step in your career. You might want to sidestep into a related role or change direction entirely.

Firstly, find out which skills you will need for the future you want. Talk to people in the know to find out more. Do you know someone who could act as your mentor or coach? Find out through friends or colleagues if they have any contacts who can spare a bit of time with you over Zoom, phone or email to share some advice about the area you’re interested in. If that’s tricky, try broadening your online network and asking questions on LinkedIn, Facebook, or other forums. Also think about signing up for online lectures and other events (many of which are free) led by people with relevant expertise.

Digital upskilling

With a large portion of the workforce operating remotely, it’s become clear that there’s a particular need to bridge the digital skills gap between employees. If you’re feeling left behind by tech, digital upskilling will help you navigate the world of remote work with more confidence, giving you the same recruitment prospects as others when the time comes to apply for new positions.

Think about the areas where you need some support, for example: virtual meeting and event platforms (Zoom, GotoWebinar, etc), analytics, basic coding, touch typing, social media training, project management software, or something else. Your employer may offer training on digital tools. If not, look up the relevant help content online and give yourself a crash course.

Using company training

If you’re employed, talk to your manager or HR department about the kind of skills you’d like to get and whether there is an existing company e-learning programme you can tap into. Alternatively, there might be a suitable mentor in the form of a coworker, or a training budget to pay for relevant external courses. Any training you get on the job is brilliant, as it can help you in your current role, future roles within the same organisation, and external roles when it’s time to move on.

Accessing independent learning

If there are no relevant upskilling opportunities in your current role, or if you’re between jobs, you’ll need to research further training independently. There are lots of options for distance learning online, through paid for and free courses. LinkedIn Learning has a good suite of materials (free to access for a month), and there are plenty of other providers, such as Coursera and Open University, offering a range of paid and free courses.

Adding skill-building to your schedule

When you’ve chosen your subject area and materials, it’s time to make space in your working week. If you’re new to home working, you could designate a portion of your former commuting time for upskilling. Whether it’s something you do once a week early in the morning, fortnightly in the evening, or daily in your lunch breaks, add dedicated learning slots to your schedule to make sure you fit it in. Decide how long you’re going to spend on each session and set a timer to take breaks, if necessary.

Sharing your new skills

Make sure you add any new certificates or completed course names to your CV and LinkedIn profile. This shows that you’re interested in learning and developing new skills, and may also help you appear in more recruiter searches.

Following your interests

Upskilling doesn’t always have to be career related. You might want to give your brain a lockdown workout by trying a new language, taking up a creative hobby or learning something new as part of a volunteer placement. You’ll find all sorts of ideas for upskilling online to help you broaden your general skills and find out more about something that truly interests you.

Take your next step with Appoint

If you’re ready for a new challenge in 2021, check out our job list and get in touch.


Job opportunities in the UK increased in September

In an economy that’s been beset by coronavirus restrictions, sickness in the workforce and monumental changes in consumer behaviour, it’s encouraging to see that job opportunities in the UK appear to be bouncing back this autumn.

The Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC) Jobs Recovery Tracker showed that the number of jobs listed in the week of the 14th of September was the highest it has been since the beginning of March 2020. (Remember March? Is it just us, or does that seem like years ago?)

It’s an undoubtedly tricky time, with redundancy looming large in many sectors and some struggling professionals being advised by the government to adapt and retrain for new careers. So, it’s reassuring to see so many new jobs available now, especially in a brave new world of remote working, social distancing and fanatical hand washing.

As many employers continue to actively seek new talent, this is actually a good time for applicants to freshen up their CVs and get the ball rolling on some exciting new applications.

If you’re gearing up for a job search and it’s been a while since you last applied for work, don’t forget that recruitment agencies like us can help you figure out where you’d like to go. We can also help give your application and interview technique a little extra professional polish.

5 featured jobs with Appoint

We’ve got a range of great jobs available now in the commercial office sector, from short-term contracts to permanent roles.

Here are five of our featured listings – click through to see the full details for each role. If you find one that fits, get in touch and we’ll be happy to answer any questions.

HR Manager

We’re helping to source a top HR Manager for our client. They’re looking for an experienced HR all-rounder to take care of onboarding, training, and payroll and benefits administration, as well as managing recruitment.

See more details

Accounts Assistant

Calling all Accounts Assistants – this role is for an AAT-qualified person who can take care of bookkeeping, compliance, payroll and more, for company clients. They are seeking someone competent in Excel and with previous experience working with Xero.

Find out more

Assistant Board Secretary

This one’s a super six-month role planning and managing the smooth running of meetings for high-profile committees and groups. Excellent organisational and planning skills are key and confidence using MS Teams and Zoom is a plus.

Read the full listing

Client Business Partner – Fintech

Here’s an exciting role in Fintech for a candidate with excellent account management skills. This brand-new opening calls for a people person who loves going the extra mile to make sure their clients are happy and looked after. Can you deliver an exceptional customer experience?

Learn more and apply now

Management Accountant

Our client is on the hunt for a qualified accountant with sound technical knowledge, commercial awareness and, ideally, eight or more years’ experience. The role comes with some initial line management, too.

Find out more now

More opportunities with Appoint

It doesn’t stop there – check out our full list of jobs available now.

New to Appoint? We’re a longstanding agency covering the commercial office sector in Bath and Somerset. Do give us a call on 01225 313130 to see if we can help you find your way to your next opportunity.

If you’re looking for a new job, you can also contact us by email on

And if you’re a hiring manager with a role to fill, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line here:


How to calm nerves before an interview

Due to recent events, many people across the UK are facing the prospect of looking for work. So, we thought we’d gather our thoughts on how to calm nerves before interview.

Perhaps you’re well used to the interviewing process. Or maybe it’s been years since you’ve had to think about it. Either way, it’s natural to feel a little nervous. Remember, if you stumble on a few words or speak a tad too quickly at times, it’s entirely normal. But the calmer you are, the easier it will be to process questions and formulate the clear responses that show you’re a top candidate for the job.

With redundancy levels increasing, be aware that there may well be heightened competition for the roles you apply for. All the more reason to learn how to calm interview nerves and present the best version of yourself to potential employers.

Want to find out how to relax before interview time? Here’s what we know about managing nerves and supercharging your confidence.

10 top tips for calm and confident interviews

Thanks to Covid-19, your job interview might occur in person and at a distance, over video conference or on the phone. Here are our recommendations, whatever form it takes.

  • Keep a copy of your CV, the job description and any interview notes to hand in case you draw a blank.
  • If you’ve been asked to deliver a presentation, practice it on your own or with a friend before the real thing.
  • If you’re interviewing by video call, make sure your internet connection is sound and that you know how to work your microphone and camera. Shut out background noise and distractions where possible.
  • Limit your caffeine! It might usually be your best friend of a morning, but nerves plus too much coffee isn’t a good combination. Try swapping in a herbal tea or cold glass of water.
  • Suck on a mint beforehand – some folk swear by it for calming nerves and nausea.
  • Arrive – whether that’s at the workplace, in front of your Skype window or by your phone – in plenty of time. ‘Late’ is never a good first impression to make.
  • Do a quick final check of your appearance before the interviewer sees you. You don’t want that last-minute tea spill or rainstorm to affect your chances.
  • Breathe! It sounds obvious, but shallow breathing does nothing to relieve tension. Try a few rounds of breathing in for five seconds, holding for five, then breathing out for five or more.
  • Listen to some relaxing sounds before starting. There are plenty of clips to choose from on meditation apps like Insight Timer or sites like YouTube.
  • When it’s time to begin, focus on speaking at a measured pace. It’ll give you more time to think and make your answers easier to understand.

Don’t forget – you’re an interviewer too. Use your time at the end of the conversation to ask the questions that matter to you.

Face-to-face interviews might feel strange due to current restrictions, especially if you’ve been working from home since lockdown. Take all the usual precautions, follow the safety rules at the interviewing location and don’t be afraid to remind your interviewer about distancing if they appear to have forgotten.

Lastly, note that nearly everyone has had an interview that didn’t go to plan. If that happens, don’t be disheartened. Learn from it and move on, knowing that the next one is bound to be better!

Start your search right

Now you’ve got the tools to calm interview nerves, you’re ready to talk jobs. Call us to chat on 01225 313130 or browse our current listings.

Most employees would prefer working in an office after a Covid-19 vaccine

According to a survey by Office Space in Town (OSiT), a successful Covid vaccine would encourage 95% of employees to pick working in an office over remote work. But the majority would also like to see more flexible working conditions than before lockdown. The survey showed that only 5% of employees were keen on a permanent shift to full-time home working.

The benefits of working from home, such as the lack of commute and more time available to spend with family, sit alongside all sorts of negative repercussions. These include back and neck pain caused by unsuitable home working spaces, feelings of isolation, and difficulties separating work and home life. Some employees have even felt pressure to work much longer and harder at home to show productivity from outside the ‘visibility’ of the office space.

In the light of these drawbacks, it seems that permanent home working isn’t sustainable for most people.

On site or off site?

We asked four full-time employees about their home working experiences and how they feel about returning to working in an office.

Charity worker Mel says “Working from home has been great in terms of the flexibility and the time saved on commuting, but for me it’s gone on too long and I would love to go back to the office. The social interaction, as well as the info you pick up just by being in the same room as your colleagues, can really add to how well you work.”

Fliss, a PR professional, says “I do miss the social aspects of the office, but I’ve gained control over my time. At home I’ve developed a much more efficient work schedule that makes me feel more energised than I did when I had a long commute and a rather inefficient work day.”

Dan, who works in financial services, has found the lack of distinction between home and work life stressful to manage. “Home feels like a safe workplace for me in the current environment. I get to spend more time with my kids, but I do find it difficult to manage work and home life in the same space. A vaccine would encourage me to return to the office, but my preference would be two days in and three at home.”

Designer Chris says “I really miss the social contact with other people in the office. I also sometimes find it hard to motivate myself at home if I’m working on an especially lengthy or boring task. In the office I generally find it easier to get my head down and get stuck into the job.”

What’s the future of office life?

As Deloitte reported back in May, “Organizations face a choice between returning to a post-COVID world that is simply an enhanced version of yesterday or building one that is a sustainable version of tomorrow”. With future case spikes and lockdowns still possible, it’s clear that employers need to continue to flex and adapt, rather than rush to enforce their more rigid pre-Covid working conditions.

So, what could going back to the office look like?

A mix of remote and onsite work

With social distancing considerations now a key factor in creating a safe workplace, it’s doubtful that office spaces will be welcoming back entire workforces on a full-time basis. Therefore, a working week split across remote and office work is likely to be a reality for many workers.

‘Bubbled’ staff

Many crowded workplaces are used to functioning on a hot-desking basis, so time-sharing office space in ‘bubbles’ of employees (with thorough cleaning between use) could be a natural next step for minimising the risk of contamination.

Hygiene protocols

On top of deep cleaning, expect extra hygiene measures, such as dividing screens, provision of masks and gloves, and hand sanitising stations throughout the site. This will not only reduce the spread of germs, but also have a reassuring psychological effect on anyone who is anxious about returning to work.

More reliable tech

Lockdown conditions forced companies to upgrade their IT infrastructure simply to keep functioning. So improved technological support and better kit for teams split across home and office spaces is likely to be high priority, both for the smooth running of businesses and to make sure employees feel valued and included wherever they are working.

Focus on wellbeing

Following all the upheaval of 2020 so far, employees’ emotional wellbeing should also be a key focus for managers keen to help the workforce come through this unstable period and into the new normal of professional life.

What’s your next move?

How do you feel about working in an office again? What kind of safe workplace setup would convince you to switch roles? If you’re ready to look at new opportunities, see our current vacancies or call us on 01225 313130 to talk over your options.


Office Space in Town, OSiT survey reveals impact of lockdown remote working on wellbeing and health & safety, June 2020
Erica Volini, Returning to work in the future of work, Deloitte Insights, May 2020

12 tips for effective virtual meetings

With home working here to stay for the foreseeable, virtual meetings have become a standard part of many employees’ lives.

Managing workloads against a backdrop of family members, housemates or curious pets can be tricky anyway, let alone if you’re required to spend much of your day on camera.

Need some pointers? Take a look at our top virtual meeting tips.

1. Write a clear agenda

Creating an agenda is a quick job – write a few bullet points and distribute them ahead of time. (If you’re not the meeting host and the call is over 30 minutes long, ask the organiser whether they can provide an agenda.) Efficiently run virtual meetings help everyone to make the most of the time and take that productive energy into the rest of the day.

2. Stick to your time slot

Determine your meeting length and stick to it, with one person keeping an eye on the agenda items and the clock. Fresh ideas don’t flourish in meetings that drag on way past the scheduled time.

3. Create a calm environment

Not so easy to achieve if you’ve got children or pets vying for camera time, or neighbours building an extension next door. But do try to organise a bit of quiet in your working environment before you join a meeting.

Start by letting other members of your household know you’re about to start a call and when it’s scheduled to end. Asking school age children to make a ‘do not disturb’ sign for the door will introduce the concept of interruption-free periods (worth a try, at least!) and letting any other workers in the house know you need a bit of calm will also help minimise distractions.

4. Be cautious with sensitive info

We tend to speak louder in virtual meetings than we would in person. If you’re working with confidential information, just remember to close windows and doors instead of bellowing the details out into the neighbourhood.

5. Learn the ropes

Familiarise yourself with the features of the conferencing tools you’re using, particularly how to activate and deactivate your microphone and camera. Learn the keyboard shortcuts for these actions so you can instantly mute or cut the camera if you need to.

If key people can’t attend it can be useful to record your meeting, so find out how to do that. To avoid interrupting the flow of a presentation, take advantage of any existing chat features to capture questions throughout the session. Then finish by tackling them in one go at the end.

6. Smile: you’re on camera

Kick off your virtual meetings with a smile and a polite greeting. Remain conscious of your facial expressions throughout – yes, you’re in your home environment, but any grimace you make is visible to everyone!

Remember to stay in shot so other users can see you’re engaged, not moving around or rearranging your desk. And don’t check your phone for personal messages – it’ll be pretty obvious what you’re doing!

7. Be considerate with sound

Remember that your microphone is probably closer to your keyboard than to your mouth. If you’re typing away during your meeting, hit mute to stop the sound of tapping keys interfering with the conversation. If people are having trouble hearing you, try turning off video.

8. Get the right kit

If you’re going to be participating in very frequent video calls, look into getting a decent webcam and headset with a microphone. Make sure your internet is fast enough, taking into account other usage in your household.

9. Share your screen with care

If you’re planning to present documents, close down the windows that are irrelevant to your call before you hit share. It’s a good way to avoid accidentally broadcasting anything confidential. Consider closing down your email too, so you don’t get distracting pop-ups while you’re presenting.

10. Avoid dead air

If you’re asked a tricky question, don’t use precious meeting time to look up the answers while everyone sits and waits. Say you’ll report back later and let the meeting continue with energy and purpose.

11. Dress appropriately

Your home and work identities may have blurred recently, but that doesn’t mean you should lose professional pride. While your immediate team might not care if you’re working in your oldest T-shirt, a senior manager might, and an outside person, new client or interviewee probably will. Strike the right visual tone for the person you’re meeting with, keeping the culture of your workplace in mind.

12. Look after your attendees

If you’re at a face-to-face meeting with socially distanced colleagues as well as virtual attendees, be aware that the people in the room may dominate the conversation. This is because they will be able to read body language, maintain eye contact and feel more connected to the task in hand. Make sure you invite comments and questions from remote attendees who may feel less inclined to contribute.

Interested in what’s out there?

We hope you found our virtual meeting tips useful! If all that home working has got you thinking about your career options, why not browse our current vacancies or call 01225 313130 to speak to an Appoint consultant?

Starting a new job working remotely

If you’ve managed to secure a new role mid pandemic, take a look at our top tips on starting a new job working remotely.

We’ve been pleased to see many employers continuing to actively recruit during this strange period. But many workers starting a new job during lockdown may find their first weeks or months are home based. Here’s how to approach that tricky first day and week when you’re joining a new team without meeting anyone in person.

1. Sort out your tech and workspace

Starting a new job while working remotely, with the uncertainty of the coronavirus outbreak hanging over you, may be one of the stranger experiences you go through. But it’s fast becoming a new normal in the world of work. If it’s your first time working remotely it might seem a little daunting. Ahead of your first day take some time to set up your work space and follow our tips and you’ll be up and running in no time.

  • Test your home internet speed. If you live with other people, find out what their internet usage is to make sure your connection isn’t affected.
  • Check your computer camera and microphone are working well to avoid awkward first calls with your new team.
  • Choose where you’re going to work then check you’re happy with whatever is going to feature in the background of any video calls.

2. Keep it professional

Trial periods will still apply, so stick to the same standards you’d use in a physical workplace. What you wear is still important, so start off smart – although you can then be guided by how casually your colleagues are dressing at home. Set yourself a strict daily routine, giving you plenty of time to prepare for each working day.

3. Make time to settle in

The induction process is going to feel quite different for virtual workers, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be welcomed and trained up on company systems. Keep your HR and IT contacts handy for questions and support, and make sure your manager or another team member is putting in enough time with you to get you off to a smooth start. Be proactive and ask questions as they arise, instead of trying to work everything out on your own.

4. Start building relationships

In your first couple of weeks, it’s a good idea to book informal meetings with some of your new colleagues. You might be waiting a while for that water cooler moment or office lunch, so start paving the way for positive relationships from the beginning. You’ll get to know people and learn about the culture of your new organisation. Do people appear to be on good terms with management? Is this the sort of team that likes a work social? Are your coworkers family people with flexible or part-time hours? Find out who your key contacts are and when they’re available to collaborate.

5. Find the best ways to communicate

Video conferencing is common now, but you may find you get better interactions out of certain people using other methods. Find out how your colleagues like to stay in touch – maybe your direct manager prefers the phone, perhaps your wider team shares most of their updates via Slack. Whatever method of communication you use when starting a new remote job, maintain a friendly, professional tone at all times.

If you’re unfamiliar with video tools, have a go in advance if you can. Check you know how to end a call, turn your mic and camera on and off, and share your screen to show your work.

What if you’re starting at a shared office?

Things are likely to look a little different in every reopened workspace. Speak to your manager or to HR in detail about what the setup is. If you have concerns, share them. After all, your safety is more important than your physical presence on day one. Good employers should have sensible protocols in place to protect workers, maybe supported by video or text guides on how to access and use the site. Make sure you have all the info before heading off on that first commute.

Remember, handshakes are probably off the table for the foreseeable future and hand hygiene will be top priority. If a new colleague forgets, it’s ok to gently remind them that you’re not being rude by keeping your distance.

Still looking for new opportunities in Bath?

Take a look at our current vacancies in Bath and the surrounding areas. Even if you don’t see what you’re looking for, call us on 01225 313130 to speak to an Appoint consultant who can assist.

How will the coronavirus affect your job search?

How will the coronavirus affect your job search?

We all know that this is an anxious and unsettling time. The UK is still in the early stages of the coronavirus and there’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding its impact on the nation. This includes uncertainty regarding how businesses will operate over the coming months.

Of course, any business disruption may naturally have an impact on recruitment plans – which may also directly affect your job search. So what should you be doing and considering at this time?

First things first…

We hope this would go without saying, yet your health should remain of the utmost priority. As should the health of your wider community!

If you are exhibiting any symptoms of respiratory illness (even if you think it’s just a cold), you should avoid attending in-person meetings and interviews. It’s wise to contact your recruitment consultant (or the employer if you’re not working with a recruitment agency) at the earliest possible time. Even if this is on the day of the scheduled interview!

Please note: you must call 111 if you believe you have any symptoms of coronavirus.

Always politely apologise for the inconvenience caused by your rescheduling and enquire about the possibility of other interview arrangements.

Alternative interview arrangements:

Depending on the employer’s availability and resources, don’t be surprised if you’re offered a telephone or Skype-based interview.

You should treat such interviews just as you would an in-person meeting. In other words, you should be researching and preparing for your interview!

If you’ll be conducting the interview by Skype or another video resource, you still want to dress as if you’re attending an in-person interview. You’ll also want to consider your body language throughout.

When speaking by phone, ensure to make an effort to communicate in a positive tone. Smiling can help to convey a more friendly tone, even though this may feel odd!

When meeting in person…

Be prepared for certain customs to be a little different. For instance, many health experts say handshakes aren’t recommended at this time; however much this goes against our cultural instincts and traditional interview etiquette! A smile with a polite nod and/or wave has become an appropriate alternative.

Many offices will also have hand sanitisers in their reception areas. Politely ask to use these when entering and exiting the building (or use your own) to demonstrate your awareness and initiative at this time.

Respect any efforts your interviewer makes towards social distancing…without trailing miles behind them!

Keep applying:

Please never assume that all new recruitment plans are on hold! Many businesses are operating as normal through these times. Furthermore, some employers will actually have more time to review their recruitment needs as they adopt different working arrangements.

It’s still a great time for you to make job applications, conduct job market research, carry out interview prep, and contact recruitment agencies.

Prepare for the unexpected:

We’ve said it before, job searches can feature a number of setbacks. During such times of change, there’s an increased likelihood of employers altering their recruitment plans at short notice.

This also increases the likelihood of recruitment delays and/or rejections. We recommend taking some time to mentally prepare for such setbacks – discussing any concerns with your recruitment consultant.

And keep in touch!

Don’t forget to keep in touch with your consultant, whether that’s to let them know about your changing plans, advise them of self-isolation, rearrange interviews, or seek some advice about your job search. You can reach your Appoint consultant via 01225 313130.

* Important Reminder * – the government is updating its coronavirus advice on a daily basis. Please stay abreast of the latest recommendations regarding your health and social interactions. 

Is your potential being squandered at work?

Do you believe you’re fulfilling your career potential? What the latest findings say about the nation’s confidence levels…

A recent City & Guilds survey of 5000 working-age people has revealed a number of concerning trends.

  • Firstly, only just over 1 in 3 employees (33%) feel ‘positive about their future career prospects’.
  • 60% say they have skills that are not being used ‘at least half of the time’.
  • Furthermore, only 53% have had any form of training at work within the past three years.
  • 34% of the group has never received any training at all or their last training took place more than five years ago.

Altogether, the findings suggest that large groups of employees are not being given the chance to fulfill their potential at work.

Advice for managers and employers:

These findings are positive for business leaders – providing as they act on the issues raised! You likely already employ individuals who can bring additional value and expertise to your business. They just need to be given the opportunity to do so. Why not ask your team about the skills they think you’re missing out on?

City & Guilds is calling on employers to help address this problem by:

  1. Exploring each job candidate’s ‘underlying skills profiles’ to find new talent for your business. In some cases, prioritising this potential and a solid skills match over sector-specific experience.
  2. Introducing flexible working practices to attract and retain these talented individuals.
  3. Additionally providing training opportunities to employees at ‘all ages and stages of their career’.

Advice for employees and job-seekers:

The survey’s authors also share some useful advice for you:

  1. Where possible, ‘put yourself forward’ for any training opportunities that arise.
  2. Explore out-of-work training to ensure you’re upskilling yourself for your future career prospects.

To add to this, you could also discuss your current unused skills with your management team. Offer practical examples of how your abilities could benefit your department/company and ask to take on new tasks and challenges.

Of course, there may also be other job opportunities that better employ your full skill-set. 

Understanding & overcoming imposter syndrome

Do you suffer from imposter syndrome, plus which industries are most affected?

Imposter syndrome is defined as “the persistent inability to believe that one’s success is deserved or has been legitimately achieved as a result of one’s own efforts or skills.”

It’s such a common phenomenon that almost 40% of UK employees may be affected. What’s more, a small number (2%) constantly experience such doubts.

Employees generally say they’re unsure they’re able to ‘fulfill all of the requirements of their current jobs.’

Certain professions experience this more often. For instance:

  1. Creatives, including artists and designers (52%)
  2. Finance professionals (47%)
  3. PR, Media, and Marketing employees (46%)
  4. Doctors, Nurses, and Dentists (44%)
  5. And IT professionals (43%)

Conversely, the professions exhibiting the greatest confidence levels include:

  • Sales professionals (78%)
  • Plumbers, electricians, and builders (72%)
  • And retail employees (68%)

In addition to these professional divides, men are more confident in their abilities than women (67% of men say they’re 100% confident in their abilities, versus only 58% of women). Older employees also express the greatest confidence levels (88% for over 65s versus 57% for 18 to 24-year-olds).

Job security fears are additionally causing some concern:

  • Only 54% of employees feel fully secure in their work.
  • 24% cite recent industry job losses as the reason for this, alongside:
  • A ‘competitive job market’ (17%)
  • And the effects of Brexit (14%)

How to overcome your imposter syndrome…

Considering its prevalence, it’s no wonder that this is such a popular topic. Thankfully, this also means there’s a lot of advice out there regarding how to overcome this affliction. Some of our favourite articles include:

  • Scott H. Young’s post on Medium. It’s a 7-minute read described as ‘a guide to living with the fear of not being good enough’. It explores some of the causes of the syndrome alongside some steps you can take to beat it.
  • Forbes’ 15 ways to overcome the syndrome. As the name suggests, this is a highly practical and tip-filled feature.
  • Mindful’s article, which includes a brief TedEd video alongside three simple steps.

Don’t be afraid to discuss your imposter syndrome with your friends and family. It really will help you to see how common this issue is.

Finally, keep an eye on our News page to ensure you stay up to date with all the latest career tips and news.

The worst management traits

Do you or your business leaders possess any of these worst management traits?

Many managers never really set out to become managers at all. As no doubt you’ve witnessed in your own career, it’s common to simply climb the ranks as new opportunities arise. It’s also common to enter team leadership roles without any formal management training.

Yet, at the same time, we know how valuable effective teams are to successful businesses. Which means it’s also vital to regularly assess our management skills – whether they’re our own or those of our employees.

HRnews has published a post detailing some of the poor management traits to watch out for.

The worst management traits include:

1. Micromanagement

Or becoming overly ‘involved’ in tasks that have been delegated to others. This has negative consequences for all – from wasting the manager’s time to undermining the trust of your employees and/or failing to give them the chance to build skills and confidence.

2. Taking the credit

This is when someone merrily accepts praise for what others have done. There can also be overlaps with not accepting blame for personal mistakes or offering up ‘scapegoats’ to save themselves! This can result in the team failing to present their ideas and/or taking a ‘cover your back’ approach to their work.

3. Hypocrisy

In this case, ‘enforcing rules that the manager fails to follow themselves’. The article offers an example of expecting high timekeeping standards when the manager is routinely late. Of course, this could apply to a whole host of business situations and the results remain the same – it reduces management ‘credibility’.

4. Poor listening skills

It’s not just about listening to employees, yet also the ability to process and respond to their feedback and ideas. The best managers also actively encourage such input. When this is absent, the team may start to doubt their manager’s efficacy.

5. Losing your temper

A short fuse places everyone on edge and can make a team feel wholly uncomfortable. This can lead to a walking-on-eggshells response and generally stunt everyone’s personal development. It can also lead to a culture of fear.

The good news…

  • Even if you identify with some or all of these management traits, you can further develop your skills. Many of the solutions are pleasingly simple, as detailed in the HR News post.
  • What’s more, as you develop your management abilities, you’re likely to generate greater success for your business.
  • Reminder: you don’t automatically have to become a people manager to progress in your career! Sometimes people simply need permission to explore other options.
  • There are plenty of natural team leaders out there and you can prioritise those with proven management experience when recruiting. You can also train your new managers to ensure that they’re continually developing their abilities.
  • If the above describes your manager, and they’re making no efforts to change, what’s to stop you working for a new management team?! Explore the latest local openings today.