January 1, 2013 marks the beginning of the twenty-fifth year of Workforce Partners Management Group, LLC. This company began as ADAPT Publishing Company, Inc. by Melvin Collins, Jr. and Yolanda L. Salazar to write and publish transitional and self-reflective materials. The very first book, Common Knowledge, A Clerical Reference Guide was written by Yolanda as an aid for clerical employees of an insurance company.
Yolanda L. Salazar began her adult career as a client of the Texas State Commission for the Blind. As a client, Yoli, as her friends know her, received one of the first successful bilateral corneal transplants by Dr. Robert L. Rock. After her vision was restored from legal blindness, Yoli accepted a full-time job with the same agency that assisted with her surgeries, State Commission for the Blind, where she rose to be the Assistant to the Regional Director and Office Manager. In 1974, she hired a new rehabilitation counselor who had come right out of The University Of Texas Rehabilitation Masters Program.
That counselor, Melvin Collins, Jr., was to become her business partner of almost forty years. Melvin worked for the State Commission for the Blind for five years as one of three Rehabilitation Counselors. His area of coverage included five Capital Area Counties. After a successful time and scheduled departure from the Commission, he became the Director of Tenant Services with the Housing Authority Of The City Of Austin where he remained for another five years.
In 1979, when Melvin left the Commission for the Blind, he and Yoli partnered to start their own business called Maintenance Management Company, Inc. After putting in 8 hours on their day jobs, Melvin and Yoli would work until midnight fulfilling agency and medical building cleaning contracts. Within a few years of continuing to operate on this schedule, the duo created MelZar Resources, Inc. which housed other new businesses: The Typing Store and Snac-A-Tac Deli. Both of these businesses were operated during the day by hired staff with Melvin and Yoli keeping an eye on day-to-day operations in between their day jobs. This went on through 1988.
On January 1, 1989, Yoli and Melvin struck out on their own to see what good they could do in the business world. They acquired a small two-room office where Yoli’s desire to write books came to fruition and Melvin decided to use his degree and do personal counseling for referrals from the Austin Municipal Courts. After a couple of years of doing this, Melvin and Yoli decided to write books together as well as visited with the local Writer’s League where a few other writers were commissioned to write books in accordance with their expertise.
In 1991, the book series, Common Knowledge, was born. It became a popular series to supplement school programs and help land a fifteen-year GSA (General Services Administration) Contract. The GSA Contract allowed WPMG to serve all members of the military and the Department Of Defense. This contract allowed ADAPT to provide books and materials to several military installations within the States as well as many overseas projects. When these installations started receiving ADAPT’s books, they wanted the staff to come to their sites and train their staff on how to use the books, so several training sessions were commissioned with the military for that purpose.
WPMG has a twenty-two year old history of working with Workforce Agencies, delivering job search and job-readiness services to thousands of participants. These services began with a contract with the Waco Housing Authority in 1993 where WPMG began its well-recognized RISE Program (Rising Into Self-Empowerment). From this experience, other agencies took note of the success of this project and were commissioned to work with the Workforce Solutions for the Heart of Texas, doing youth projects three years in a row. Word got around about the success of the youth programs and again, WPMG was commissioned by Corpus Christi’s Workforce Solutions Office to work with their youth. Two programs, two years in a row, were developed for them, also quite successful. Notice of WPMG’s program successes also got the attention of some of the military bases which had been contacted previously. Some of the most familiar locations served were White Sands Missile Range, Kelly Air Force Base, Red River Army Depot, U. S. Coast Guard as well as a consortium was developed at the Naval Base at Bangor, Washington to bring in the staff for a training session with all military installations within the State of Washington.
Around that time, there was word going around that the government was getting ready to downsize five military installations. On the chopping block was our infamous Kelly Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. Melvin and Yoli had worked quite a bit in the San Antonio area working with the Alamo Workforce Solutions Office there, working on various programs. When the word got out that the government was downsizing, Melvin and Yoli saw an opportunity to become a Rapid Response Team for the State of Texas. This involved being available, at a moment’s notice, should there ever be a downsize or lay-off situation happen anywhere in the State. This was an awesome opportunity and Melvin and Yoli went after it and became one of the largest Rapid Response Teams in the State. Areas covered were Austin, San Antonio, Waco, Corpus Christi, East Texas, Deep East Texas, Beaumont, Texarkana as well as various other closures around the State. This continued until 2009.
In 2005, in between these projects, WPMG was contacted by the Workforce Solutions for the Coastal Bend Staff regarding the huge Katrina population that had descended upon the city of Corpus Christi. WPMG accepted the challenge to create a separate office to work with all the Katrina evacuees as a result of the devastating Hurricane Katrina. Hundreds of people were served as a result of this project. Three separate graduations were held for the participants of this program and many placements were made. When it was time for the Louisiana population to return to their city, many of the evacuees chose to stay in the Corpus Christi area. A prestigious award was presented to Melvin Collins for his direction with the Katrina Project. Weldon Boggus, Operations Manager for the Katrina Project, was also awarded a prestigious award and recognized for his tenacious efforts.
In March, 2009, the Executive Director for the Workforce Solutions for the Heart of Texas saw a dire need for assistance with all the dislocated workers in the Waco area. His idea was for WPMG to create a “Workforce Center within the Center” concept, just for all those people who were being laid off at the time. WPMG set up this “Workforce Center within the Center” and commenced to serving customers left and right. The Center was quite a success and served thousands of customers throughout its 9-month tenure.
In 2010 as well as 2011, again the Workforce Solutions for the Heart of Texas had a need for various program projects that WPMG took on with the same challenge-driven endeavors it had dealt with on previous projects. There were many successes involved with these programs and to date, there are many, many individuals who fondly remember WPMG and everything it did to assist and serve them.
In mid 2011, Melvin came up with a concept of assisting college students. He felt there was a bit of neglect there because there was assistance for dislocated workers, single-parent households, the elderly, the Veterans, etc. He felt, however, that there was no program or assistance for the college students. Upon graduating from college, there are many students who are in dire need of employment. They complete their studies and they go out in the real world to get a job, but following them is a long-time student loan which they are responsible for paying.
Melvin created CampusJobXpress.com! This is a magazine format that houses much more than just articles. It affords its subscribers to participate in job-related activities as well as opportunities for savings on various business deals and specials. CampusJobXpress.com offers various job postings, availability of internships or volunteer projects and much, much more.
In 2012, WPMG was again commissioned to do a project for the Workforce Solutions for the Heart of Texas. This project involved again working with all the individuals who were recipients of the Unemployment Insurance Benefits Program. Melvin decided to launch the CampusJobXpress.com magazine in March, 2012, not just for the college students, but also for the dislocated workers in the area. It was discovered that everything that the magazine could do for the college students, it could also do for the dislocated workers as well as any other program associated with Workforce Solutions, to include the Veterans.
CampusJobXpress.com took off with subscriber participation growing monthly. It now has an Online Job Club which allows the subscribers to log on and communicate with other subscribers as they participate in weekly discussions. A subscriber can post comments 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and can chat with one another regarding jobs they have found or jobs they are particularly seeking. It is an excellent way for job seekers to stay in touch with each other and to lend a hand to their fellow-subscribers.
Also available on CampusJobXpress.com is the availability of RSS Feeds that link to major employers from around the country (Fortune 500). These Feeds provide a regularly updated summary of web content, along with links to full versions of that content. Businesses can link their company webpages to this magazine so that the subscribers always have up-to-date news footage available to them at any time. The Feeds are controlled by the individual companies and they make changes and updates, as needed.
Subscribers also have the opportunity to create their resume utilizing the Resume Chat Room, creating a Video Resume and chat with employers through the Video Chat Room with Employers. Another feature available to subscribers is the Online Mall. This is a service where CampusJobXpress.com representatives will visit with businesses to locate food specials, movie ticket deals, auto repair discounts, clothing discounts or food deals. When representatives make contact with the business, the business will be given the opportunity to engage in the CJX Rewards Card Program. All subscribers will be issued Rewards Cards and when businesses sign on to provide specials, discounts and deals, the subscriber will be able to take advantage of those opportunities. This affords both the business and the subscriber an opportunity to benefit from this arrangement.
A Veterans Section is also being created to assist veterans in their job-search endeavors and any particular issues they may have with regard to job seeking or perhaps, questions they may have with governmental agencies or personnel. Experts in the area of veteran issues are being contacted daily to assist with ongoing articles and assistance for the veterans.
In 2006, WPMG created The WPMG Network, a website that is constantly being improved and upgraded for its users. The website houses all of the ADAPT books, videos, podcasts, seminars and a few cooking classes to boot. This website is linked to the CampusJobXpress.com site and is available at any time of the day or night for those individuals who see a need to read a book, view a video or just to watch a cooking show. The books are printable. Many agencies have taken advantage of this website to assist them with their customers and staff.
To make this long story short, WPMG is celebrating its many successes with you because that was the intent of Melvin and Yoli when they created every bit of this company’s features and services. It is WPMG’s desire to wish you and yours a very Happy and Prosperous New Year.
Together, let’s make a spectacular year! Δ
Top Five Personality Traits Employers Hire Most
I know you: You’ve made looking for your next job, well… your job. You’ve scoured your resume of clichéd buzzwords, brushed up on body language and even gotten a handle on the dreaded video interview.
But all of that might be for naught if you just don’t have the personality sought by your dream employer. New research shows that the vast majority of employers (88%) are looking for a “cultural fit” over skills in their next hire as more and more companies focus on attrition rates. Lucky for you, we’ve drilled down into data from 1,200 of the world’s leading employers (think General Electric, P&G and Accenture) to find precisely the personalities big business seek.
Universum, the Stockholm-based employer branding firm that annually surveys over 400,000 students and professionals worldwide on jobs-related issues, has culled their data to the top five personality traits employers are looking for in job candidates in 2012. How’s that for a leg up on the competition?
“We surveyed employers to get a handle on the challenges that face them in hiring,” says Joao Araujo of Universum. “What are they looking for in employees and what are they not finding?” By identifying both traits, he says, aspiring job applicants can both identify the most sought after traits—and brush up resumes and interview tactics to best position themselves.
Professionalism (86%), high-energy (78%) and confidence (61%) are the top three traits employers say they are looking for in new hires. Kathy Harris, Managing Director of Manhattan-based executive search firm Harris Allied says these first-impression traits are the most critical for employers to prepare for as they all can be evaluated by a recruiter or hiring manager within the first 30 seconds of meeting a candidate.
“A manager can read you the moment you walk in the door,” she says; from the clothes you wear to the way you stand to the grip of your first hand-shake. Presenting yourself as a confident, energetic professional is about as basic as career advice gets. But don’t be off-put by this commonplace advice. Harris, who specialized in high-level executive placement says even the most seasoned of CEOs can get tripped up by the basics. Universum clients agree: confidence ranks highest on the list of skills companies think employees are missing most.
“We remind every candidate of the most granular advice,” she says. The most successful applicant is the one who walks into every interview with her hand outstretched for a handshake, has done her homework on the interviewer and company and is dressed to fit effortlessly into the culture of the workplace.
The remaining personality traits that Universum clients say are critical in the hiring process aren’t ones that can be read on-sight but instead call for both resume and interview preparation. To present yourself as a self-monitoring (58%) personality type, Harris says to adjust resume language to call attention to work experience where you’ve worked independently or excelled without the guidance of direct leadership. “In interviews, choose anecdotes that show how you’ve saved, made or achieved in previous positions… and how self-motivation was critical to that success.”
Intellectual curiosity (57%) is, fittingly, a curious trait for Harris, who says she generally advises clients to tightly edit the “hobbies and interests” sections of their resumes. “I’d imagine that in looking for intellectual curiosity, employers are looking for two things,” she says. “The ability to problem solve and the ongoing dedication to learning new technologies or solutions that will continue to advance in the changing workplace.” Employers are asking themselves whether new hires will be with the company for the long term, she says. An employee who will grudgingly adopt a new database is not as attractive as one who is truly passionate about learning new things. Δ
10 Body Language Interview Mistakes
From eye contact to posture to the way you fix your hair, avoid these 10 physical slip-ups in your next job interview.
1. Bad Postured Posture
Leaning back is lazy or arrogant, leaning forward is aggressive and slouching is just lazy. Instead, experts say to aim for a neutral position, sitting tall as if a string were connecting your head to the ceiling.
2. Breaking Eye Contact
“Hold eye contact one extra eyelash,” says Charisma Coach Cynthia Burnham. She says we tend to feel uncomfortable holding eye contact once a personal connection has been created. Don’t stare, but try to hold your interviewer’s gaze for one extra second before breaking away. “Do this especially when shaking hands,” she says.
3. Chopping and Pointing
Cynthia Burnham, a California-based Charisma Coach, says chopping or pointing motions can “cut up” the space between you and your interviewer in an aggressive way.
4. Crossed Arms
“Arms crossed over your chest signals defensiveness and resistance,” says Karen Friedman, Communications Expert. “When they’re open at your sides, you appear more approachable.”
5. Excessive Nodding
“Sometimes we undermine how powerful or in focus we are by nodding like a bobble-head doll,” says Burnham, a habit that’s particularly common in women. “Nod once or twice with a smile of agreement. But find your still center and stay there.”
“Stop fidgeting!” says Amanda Augustine of TheLadders. “The nervous energy will distract the interviewer. You want [him or her] focused on what you have to say, not the coins jingling in your pocket or the hangnail on your finger.”
7. Hands Behind Back
It’s important to appear approachable and open, so don’t try to control gestures or fidgeting by keeping your hands still. This is especially important when you begin to speak, says Friedman. “Keeping your hands in your pockets or behind your back inhibits movement and makes you appear stiff.”
8. Mismatched Expressions
“If your tone isn’t matching your facial expression, you could find yourself in hot water,” says Communications Coach Matt Eventoff. “If someone asks what you’re most passionate about and your face is in deadpan while you answer, it’s not going to translate well.”
9. Shifty Eyes
Friedman says distracted or upward eye movements can suggest someone is lying or not sure of themselves. “It’s important to look someone directly int he eye to convey confidence and certainty.”
“It’s important to be confident and look the interviewer in the eye,” says Amanda Augustine, Job Search Expert at TheLadders. “But then break away. Locking eyes with someone for an extended period of time can be interpreted as aggressive, not to mention creepy. Δ
CampusJobXpress.com (CJX) was developed to serve college students as they approached graduation. Many students finish their education with a degree, certification or license, plus a loan to pay back. Finding a job becomes paramount to start their new life off correctly. Also, CJX has discovered that its services fit many laid-off workers and veterans as well.
CJX combines many services that you will find on other sites, and much more. The combination of services truly allows convenience and efficiency. This site appears as a job search magazine; however, it houses much more with even more to come. What is on the site, you might ask? Well, let’s see:
EMPLOYMENT AND TRANSITIONING ARTICLES
Our online magazine takes pride in its encouraging and informative career-based articles posted each month.
EMPLOYMENT – LIST OF JOBS AVAILABLE BY REGION
Employers are able to post job openings in detail for subscribers to view as often as needed, all with our compliments. These listings are posted by workforce regions within the state. Employers are allowed to post as much detail as they feel is needed.
JOBS BY INDUSTRY
CJX offers employers a specialty page categorized by industry types. On these specialty pages, employers can provide a detailed explanation of their company’s history, benefits and special instructions with hyperlinks to their company. It is an opportunity for businesses to really open up to their future employees. This page offers full color appeal to attract the best candidates.
The magazine is linking to News RSS Feeds of the major employers from around the country (Fortune 500). An RSS Feed is a regularly updated summary of web content, along with links to full versions of that content. These feeds have the option to link company webpage news to our magazine so that all up-to-date news can be seen by our subscribers at any time. The Feeds are controlled by the companies and may change at any time.
If subscribers are looking for internships, on-the-job training or volunteer hours, we have a specific area which allows the students to post their availability and what type of volunteer work is being sought. Employers are also able to post openings for internships or volunteer needs. Work experience is critical for most of our subscribers to gain much needed experience in selected fields.
In this section of the magazine, CJX showcases the most outstanding or top-qualified employment candidates. These candidates are referred by their school, organization or workforce agency. Subscribers with extensive experience, degrees and skills can be at the top of the employers review list through Our Best Section.
RESUME CHAT ROOM
Resumes are very important for candidates to showcase their skills. CJX asks its employment candidate to detail a summary of qualifications with a full description of employment and educational history. This section allows for communication with a Resume Expert reviewing their resume with possible suggestions and tips.
VIDEO RESUME POSTINGS
Subscribers can post video recordings of themselves discussing what makes them a valuable employee candidate for employers to review. As important as a resume is to finding the appropriate job, a video resume allows for a candidate to set themselves apart from other candidates. Anyone can do your resume, but only you can do your video resume. Your are able to display personality and project yourself with the video resume. Subscribers are given a link to place on their resume for ease of viewing by employers.
VIDEO CHAT ROOMS WITH EMPLOYERS
If employers wish to interview subscribers, but for any number of reasons cannot see the subscriber in his/her office, employers and subscribers are able to engage in video interviews through a Video Chat Room.
Job club is a weekly online discussion open to everyone. Subscribers and employers may communicate about different topics each week. Content, questions and answers are open for discussion 24/7. Many questions are referred to experts on any particular topic for appropriate response. Job information is shared by subscribers with one another allowing for a vast network to aid with job searching.
The CJX Online Mall Service is an attempt to give subscribers opportunities which may not normally be offered to them. CJX Representatives visit with businesses to locate opportunities for food specials, movie tickets, auto repair, clothing and much more.
There are times when businesses have over purchased or their business may need a boost. Our Online Mall allows for businesses to advertise their company, specials, and locations to attract subscribers. Subscribers can then find the nearest place to grab a bite to eat or see a movie and check any specials available.
Through our Rewards System, a business may post specials on our website for subscribers to redeem when the Rewards Card is presented at participating locations. Businesses are allowed to change specials as often as necessary and place a hyperlink to their webpage.
REWARDS CARD/ONLINE MALL
CJX added an Online Mall and Rewards Cards to give opportunities to its subscribers to receive various deals and specials. The thought is to provide a connection between the people we serve and the business community.
Many businesses have a need to connect to customers by offering them specials and deals during any particular slow-down times and over-purchases. This benefits our subscribers who may be on a limited budget but still want to go to the movies, eat out, buy clothes or just have some fun.
Both businesses and subscribers benefit from this arrangement. This Rewards Program is not new. It is very likely that you have seen programs similar to this in hotels.com, expedia.com as well as other sites. They market hotel rooms, airline seats, etc that have not sold. Why not give subscribers the same opportunity? The card is free. The offers can change many times a week and there is no obligation on the part of the cardholders. If they like it, they can use it.
Our Veterans Section concentrates on the needs and specific information concerning Veterans during their job search efforts. It is a place for Veterans, their families and other interested parties to connect and communicate.
Workforce Partners Management Group’s traditional site to help individuals move their lives from where they are to where they want to go. These services have helped many military personnel, dislocated workers, students and anyone transitioning to a new way of life. On this site, the WPMG Network offers books, videos, podcasts, seminars as well as a few cooking classes. △