On volunteering

Volunteering is one of those win-win propositions that people often talk about. By donating your time to a worthwhile organization you can gain new skills, expand your network and gain some Canadian experience while the agency you volunteer at gets the benefit of your skills and experience for free. Win – win.

The above benefits are obvious but did you know that volunteering can strengthen your immune system, reduce your blood pressure and adds years to your life? Volunteering also affects our self-esteem and how happy we feel. By helping an organization that takes care of others we are also taking care of ourselves.

Volunteer Victoria has an on-line database of opportunities. You may want to check it out.

Idiom 10

logo_96A Raw Deal

Meaning: An unfair outcome

Example: Dennis got a raw deal when he was passed over for promotion.

All idioms

Camosun College — Business Options and Career Fair

Some of you may want to note that Camosun is hosting a career fair for students at the Interurban Campus on Thursday, March 5th. Look here for a summary of activities and here (pdf) for a list of guest speakers.

Demographics – the numbers don’t lie

Back in January I blogged about how Canada’s overall demographic picture was more important in terms of the labour market than current global economic woes.

Recessions come and go every decade or so. These current economic problems will eventually fade but our demographic picture endures. This is an important enough issue to review so keeping that in mind you may want to check out this article that sums up the whole issue.


The last half of this Toronto Sun article chronicles the experiences of 19 immigrants as they found meaningful work. Theseshort summaries can provide inspiration and serve as a reminder that while foreign-trained professionals face more barriers than the average job seeker, there are many success stories.

Resume review

If you haven’t’ had a job interview in awhile and have been actively looking for work it may be time to take another look at your resume. I have found some articles that you can use as inspiration for giving your resume a make-over. As always you can ask Dan or myself for help if you are not sure about how to integrate some of these ideas

Many of our clients have technical backgrounds. This article provides ten technical resume writing tips to make sure you are giving employers the information they expect (and need) to see.

Those of you who like charts will be impressed with this resume rubric that allows you to quickly gauge how effective your resume is.

In my experience many job seekers understate their accomplishments. Check out these tips for showcasing your “Home Run” accomplishments.

Note that “Home Run” is one of those sports idioms that shoes up in the business world on a frequent basis. Check out this page for a list of English sports idioms.


…employers are more likely to hire happy-looking people than unhappy-looking ones. That might sound shallow. But it’s human nature. Employers may be well aware of the reason for the glum faces. They may even sympathize. But they, like everyone, are attracted to positivity and repelled by negativity.

Which is why, when you’re looking for a job, you need to consistently project optimism, resilience, and confidence.

From: How to Be a Stand-out Job Candidate

Idiom 9

logo_96Keep a lid on

Meaning: To keep information private or confidential

Example: Let’s keep a lid on our expansion plans.

All idioms

Butchart Gardens job fair

Another tourism industry job fair has been announced. This one is with Butchart Gardens.

See this link (pdf) for details.

-129,000 jobs

StatsCanada is reporting the largest one month decline in jobs since the methodology for their labour force survey was changed in 1976.

There is not much to comment on as the chart tells you all you need to know about the January job picture.

The local picture is much brighter however as the unemployment rate for Victoria nudged up only slightly to 4%. In this economy any unemployment rate below 5% has to be considered very good.