Tracy's blog

I’m Tracy Au and I have graduated from the Professional Writing program from university. I am an aspiring screenwriter, so this blog is used to promote my writing and attract people who will hire me to write for your TV show or movie. I write a lot about writing, TV, movies, jokes, and my daily life and opinions. I have another blog promoting my TV project at

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

"Forget your college's career centre cause this one's on you"/ corporate ladder

Jul. 7 "Forget your college's career centre cause this one's on you": I cut out this article by Dan Schawbel in Metro on Mar. 31, 2014.

Tip #2 is helpful about getting introductions to alumni that could help get you a job.  I've been to the MacEwan career counselor.  She was an Asian woman and she was kind and a good listener.  Here's the whole article:

Gone are the days that students can rely on their college career centers to prepare them for the real world — now it’s on them. Students have to be accountable for their careers and seek out events, alumni and opportunities on their own.

In a new study by my company and, we found that almost half of students aren’t using their career centers, and 64 percent are turning to online resources instead. The average ratio of students to career service professionals is 1,889 to 1, and we found that almost a third of students in our study say that centers don’t have enough staff to support demand.

What’s most alarming is that 61 percent say career centers are either never or rarely effective in helping them land a job. Clearly, students have to take matters into their own hands! Here are five tips:

1. Be proactive and attend as many career-oriented college events as possible. If your school is bringing in a guest speaker, or hosting a roundtable with alumni, you should attend. The worst outcome from going to an event like that is learning more about their industry, and the best is making a new connection that could lead to employment.

2. Get your career service center to introduce you to alumni in your field. The most important asset that career centers have, that they don’t use nearly enough, is their alumni database. Instead of just going into a meeting with your career counselor about your resume and cover letter, ask for introductions to alumni that are employed at companies that you’re interested in. That connection is way more important than the format your resume is in!

3. Use free or paid online platforms to educate yourself and stay ahead of the curve. Don’t rely on your career center as the single place where you learn job skills. Instead, turn to online resources like Udemy, Coursera, Khan Academy, SkillShare and Udacity. Based on your profession and industry, you can learn vital skills that will translate into new opportunities.

4. Do as many internships and freelance gigs as you can until you find the right career path. Students are almost always clueless about which career path to pursue even after selecting a college major. To figure things out, you have to have as many experiences as possible so you understand the types of roles you like and don’t like. By doing this, you realize the profession you want to be in, the size company you want to work for and the corporate culture you do best in.

5. Disconnect from technology and meet people face-to-face to build your soft skills. In a past survey, we found that 40 percent of students feel like technology has hurt their soft skills, such as the ability to interact and build relationships face to face. Make sure you are disconnecting every day so that you can meet people and form stronger connections that can lead to jobs.

"Climbing up the corporate ladder": I cut out this article by Lakshmi Gandhi in the Metro on Jul. 28, 2014.

There are certain pieces of advice that almost every young entry-level worker gets used to hearing: Look professional at all times, speak confidently, be authoritative.

What’s less clear is how a young worker can actually develop these skills.

In her new book, “Executive Presence: The Missing Link Between Merit and Success,” economist and founder of the Center for Talent Innovation Sylvia Ann Hewlett guides readers through how they can appear more confident and successful in the workplace.

“If you are the most junior person on the team, you have to prove that you have the right to be there,” Hewlett says.

Read on for some pointers from Hewlett for workers who are looking to learn how they can get ahead.

Communication is key.

Regardless of what field you are in, the ability to present your thoughts clearly is essential. “It’s learning how to be concise,” she says. “Make sure that you are contributing something that is fresh and new.”


Watch your tone.

Your voice can give away a lack of experience or indicate anxiety. “The clarity and pitch of your voice is important,” she says.

Hewlett recommends practicing keeping your voice level and cutting down on “up talk,” which is when speakers raise their voices at the end of a sentence.


Practice, practice, practice.

The key to learning how to speak confidently is repetition, says Hewlett. A good idea is to record yourself speaking as you would at a team meeting. “You can get a friend and practice together,” Hewlett says. “Practice how you can boil down your thoughts in a concise way.”

Find people in the office you can model.

Is there someone in the office who always seems to say and do the right thing? “Find a role model who you think cracks the code,” Hewlett recommends.

Don’t look at your notes.

One of the keys to appearing knowledgeable is to be able to speak without relying on things like PowerPoint and notes. “I’m not saying never use notes,” says Hewlett. “But use [PowerPoint] sparingly. Be prepared to make your points without reading them. Tell stories. Make eye contact.”

Be present.

Leave your smartphone behind when attending meetings to avoid the temptation of looking at it. “Team leaders hate it when people show up and seem distracted,” she says. “To appear focused and to appear available is half the battle.”

Aug. 25 My opinion: I have used the MacEwan's career centre before to get career counseling.  It was back in 2012.  In 2011, I had went to all these job interviews at offices, and didn't get hired.  It's good to get an outside perspective.


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