Archive for March, 2013

Boosting your job prospects with a coach



If you’re a professional sportsman or woman then it seems only natural for you to invest in a personal coach or trainer to take you to the next level and be the best you can.  The same thinking however is often not applied to candidates looking for a job and many candidates fall short in interviews because of lack of confidence, or they don’t know how to sell themselves to the best of their ability.  Using a coach can be a great way of boosting your job prospects, especially with the job market being crowded and competitive.

The truth is, that whatever aspect of your life you wish to improve, it’s likely that life coaching will be able to help you in some way.  Whether you wish to enhance your work performance and career opportunities or you are looking to boost your confidence and get your motivation back these are all areas that a professional coach can help you with.  Let’s look at some of these areas in more detail.

Listed below are a few specific areas for which Life Coaching is renowned for addressing:

Career Coaching

It may be that you’ve spent years performing in the same job role or been stuck in a role that hasn’t fulfilled you for some time.  Either way you may find that you have begun to lose motivation and the passion you once had for the role you are in.  In reality very few of us will achieve our ‘dream job’ and we have to remember the practicalities of why we need to go to work and often sideline the path we wish to pursue.

We may enter a job with good intentions of pursuing what we really want at a later and more convenient time but many of us never get around to doing this.

There are many reasons why people suddenly feel stagnant and unfulfilled and life coaching is a valuable tool which enables individuals to review their options and make positive changes in their careers which could provide a new found energy for their role or alter the direction in which they are heading.  A coach can help you re-assess what your goals and passions are and how you can use your dreams in a realistic situation to get back to enjoying what you do now or find a way to move from that role into something that will offer you long term fulfilment.

Confidence & Self Belief Coaching

Confidence is a vital asset for succeeding in the job market.  Not enough of it and you won’t put yourself forward for roles for fear of failure and too much of it and you may find yourself coming across as cocky and over confident in interviews.  This is an area of our persona that many of us need to work on but in reality don’t know where to start. Suffering from low self-esteem and a lack of self-confidence can have a huge impact on a person’s professional and personal life, often resulting in individuals not feeling as though they possess the qualities needed to achieve their goals.

The word confidence means something different to everyone. For some it may be the ability to give a speech in front of friends and family at a wedding, to others it may be about applying for a promotion or presenting an idea to a group of colleagues. Confidence is all about having belief in yourself and this is something coaching could help with.

By using a coach to help boost your confidence and self belief you may find yourself going for the ultimate promotion at work that could just be the dream job you’ve always wanted.  Confidence coaching can help you to turn these visions into reality by working with you to form a programme by using certain techniques such as setting empowering goals to help keep you on track for obtaining that perfect job or role.

Using a coach to improve your job prospects in the employment market can only be a win win situation for you and will help you move to achieving your desired outcome and also enhancing your CV as you may discover new talents or skills through hobbies that you have previously been reluctant to try.



How to become your own boss


Guest blog: Freelancer employment company, Parasol offers advice on self employment and becoming your own boss. From the development of your business idea right through to financial management.


The current economic climate has resulted in a large number of people being made redundant, while it has also prevented many from even getting started on their career ladder. As a result of the downturn, more and more people are thinking about becoming their own boss.

If you are sitting on a good business idea, but believe that it is a risky time to make the leap to self-employment, you may want to think again. With reduced competition and lower prices for office space, marketing and advertising, a recession can often be a good time to get creative.

Where to begin?

There are a number of different paths you can choose to take in order to become your own boss. Whether you want to set up a limited company, become self employed or work through an employment outsourcing specialist, it is important to make a decision that is best suited to your goals and requirements.

Running a limited company or being self-employed means that you would be responsible for your accounts, invoicing and records, while an umbrella company would take care of all your financial management. Once you decide on the most suitable path, you should:

1) Develop your business ideas – you must research your idea to make sure that there is a viable place in the market for your product or service. It is important that you aren’t too precious about your initial idea as it may need to be tweaked to make it as successful and profitable as possible.

2) Construct a business plan – if you are setting up a business, you will need to construct a detailed plan that includes information about your business idea, strategy and objectives as well as your market and realistic forecasts regarding your finances.

3) Plan your finances – with a viable plan, a bank will lend you money for your business venture. Alternatively, you may have family or friends to financially support the project, or your own start-up funds.

If you want to become a contractor or freelancer, or use an employment outsourcing specialist, you may only need financial support or back-up savings at the early stage of your career as your pay may be sporadic. This will allow you to build a reputation and establish yourself in the industry, without having to worry about your outgoings.

4) Understand the legislation – this can often become a hindrance for new start-ups and the self-employed. Getting specialist advice on topics such as tax and employment can help you to avoid such stumbling blocks at the start. For example, contractors can look for the best umbrella company around for payroll support so that they can delegate tax calculations, National Insurance deductions and business expenses to the professionals, allowing them to rest assured that their pay is correct.

Completing these four tasks will stand you in good stead for success. However, the work doesn’t end here. Setting up a business or becoming self employed can require you to set up and manage a workplace, working schedule, workforce, partnerships as well as a marketing and advertising strategy. While becoming your own boss does require plenty of hard work, this effort is essential if you are to thrive in self-employment.


Guest blog: How to write a good cover letter


Guest blog from Debbie Gingell, Career Coach at Leg Up Careers

A good cover letter is one more opportunity to sell yourself!

Many job seekers view the cover letter as a mere courtesy and will write one or two lines to accompany their CV or application form. This is a missed opportunity!

Whilst it’s not a good idea to overload the recipient with reading material, a brief structured letter will definitely grab the interest of the reader, especially if you highlight your unique selling points that match the job specification!

Some top tips…

No more than 4 brief paragraphs:

 Brief introduction – please find my application for above position etc

 Paragraph 2 – This role particularly appeals to me…

 Paragraph 3 – I have worked within Logistics for 14 years and have extensive experience in (state what)

 Conclusion – I believe I would be a real asset to your organisation (state why) and hope to be invited to interview to discuss the opportunity further.


Things to be careful of:

 There are some jobs that require a letter of application to be submitted along with an application form, particularly within the education sector. Treat this type of letter very differently. What the employer is after is a personal statement, but in a letter format.

 Do not repeat information or copy and paste from your personal statement or application form

 Don’t be tempted to write too much

 Ensure you include what will sell you the most – if is the brand of the company you currently work, make reference to it, if it is your qualifications that make you stand out, then highlight these. You really have to be selective in order to keep it punchy and brief.


About Debbie Gingell:

Throughout my career, I have worked with people from a variety of backgrounds including: students, senior business executives, refugees, mums returning to work, ex-offenders and long term unemployed. I have worked hard to support people who need to secure their first/next job or University place and genuinely love what I do!

We are all unique individuals and I believe that it is important for us to secure the right job because it can lead to a sense of worth and personal satisfaction. My freelance work involves professional CV writing and career coaching for the Times Education Careers Department in London. Providing local and on line career advice and support via Leg up careers, and working with students at an Independent School in Cambridge, supporting students with their University applications and career decisions.

I am extremely committed to helping people to overcome barriers to employment so that they can move forwards and become more successful!

Feel free to email me on: or visit


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