Saturday, February 21, 2009

Tyra Mail! 5 Ways Not to Cry at Work

"Keep the waterworks out of the office!

Crying at the office is never good for anyone's career, but let's face it, being young and female in the workplace can be a challenge. Hannah Seligson, career advice expert and author of "New Girl on the Job," shares a few of the sure-fire ways not to let your work frustrations get the best of you.

Negotiate Your Salary Ahead of Time
Finding out the guy sitting next to you makes 20% more money is sure to bring on the waterworks. And this is not uncommon -- according to a 2007 study by the American Association of University Women Educational Foundation, just one year out of college, women working full time already earn less than their male colleagues, even when they work in the same field. So, while you think you're too young to negotiate salary, think again! Remember, you can't get what you don't ask for. So, don't be afraid and negotiate!

Stop Making Copies!
Fetching coffee, Xeroxing, and other administrative tasks are things we all have to do at one point or another, but don't allow yourself to be pigeonholed into only playing the assistant role. Make sure you're clear in the beginning of a job what your role is within the company. That way, people know what they can and cannot ask you to do.

Don't Burn the Midnight Oil
Wearing yourself out is no way to get ahead in your career. Don't sacrifice your health, lunch or social life to run yourself into the ground. Keep in mind, working smart does not mean working the longest. Stay organized and goal-oriented. Is spell checking something 80 times really a good way to utilize your time?

Never Ask Someone, "Will You Be My Mentor?"
This question is the workplace equivalent of, "Will you be my boyfriend?" Having mentors is an important part of successfully navigating one's career, but asking someone this question point-blank will only freak them out. Instead, approach potential mentors in a more organic way. Be specific with what you want and ask something like, "Hey, can I sit down with you at some point to get your advice on a new project I'm working on?"

Think Career Instead of Job
Thinking of your job as only a 9 to 5 kind-of-a-thing will only lead to a miserable, dead-end position. Your career choice should be something that gets you excited to wake up in the morning. If you think of your long-term career as something you'd like to see yourself doing years down the road, you'll be much more likely to avoid any workplace unhappiness.

For more career tips for women who not only want to survive but THRIVE in the workplace, check out Hannah Seligson at"

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