Dedicated to the progress and advancement of all paralegals.

Mentor Blog

Welcome to our mentor blog. Here you will find posts from
industry professionals on such topics as:
  • Resume & Cover Letter tips
  • Interview Tips
  • How to succeed at work
  • How to get a Mentor
  • What every Mentee should know
  • I lost my job. Now what?
  • Healthy habits
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  • 06 Feb 2010 6:18 PM | Deleted user
    A new member has suggested this site: Paralegal Mentor.com, created by Vicki Voisin, aka The Paralegal Mentor. She offers strategies and resources to help your career.
  • 30 Jan 2010 9:51 PM | Mariana Fradman (Administrator)

    I would like to share the article written by Monica O'Brien with you. It will answer some in not all questions I am getting on a regular basis.

    Sincerely,
    Mariana Fradman

    6 Tips to keep a Mentor

    by Monica O’Brien

    I get messages almost daily from people who read my blog and want to meet with me by phone or in-person. As a rule, though, I won’t meet with anyone unless they have interacted with me several times, or they give me a good reason (not just “let’s chat”). I realize this may make me seem snobby or elite, which isn’t my intention.

    Steer clear of being a time vampire

    My intention is to avoid time sucks. I would love to be everyone’s friend, but it isn’t a reality for me at this time. I have work, school, a house, and a family that all need my attention too.

    Plus, I realize some people are just out there to use me, and some people are one-hit bloggers who will disappear in 2 months, and some people don’t have that much in common with me, and it’s hard to sort through whom I should spend my time getting to know, especially online.

    Six tips to connecting with a mentor

    I think anyone with any amount of clout can probably relate to this. So if you want to meet someone you admire, here are six tips on how to make it happen:

    Tip #1 – Choose someone local

    While the internet holds a vast number of possibilities, at the end of the day my most useful connections are made offline. In my experience, the value of having a local network is at least tenfold the value of a having an online network in terms of job leads, collaboration, and sales opportunities. So it helps to find someone you have a chance of meeting in-person someday.

    Maybe you have endless financial resources and “local” for you means anywhere in the US, or anywhere in whatever country you live in. That’s cool. For me it means people in the Chicago area, usually, or people who are deep enough into social media that they will always be attending the big blogging and social media conferences.

    Tip #2 – Bring something to the table

    Mentors are at the top for a reason; they surrounded themselves with talented people throughout their careers. To get a mentor you need to give him a reason to think that helping you will somehow benefit him. Otherwise, he will not make time to meet with you.

    If you can’t think of a good reason to meet with someone, here’s a default: tell him you want a career like his, and that you have questions about how to pursue the same path. It’s probably true to some extent, right?

    But then you also have to prove you have the potential to go all the way. Force the person to see himself in you; that’s your in. Because who doesn’t want to help someone that is where he was once?

    Tip #3 – Act on advice

    Your mentor will not want to mentor you if you don’t act on his advice. If he is going to make time for you, he doesn’t want to feel like his efforts are going to waste. Plus, acting on a mentor’s advice is a sign of your deep respect for him and his experience. So stop making excuses or explaining why you can’t. Just do what he says; it did work for him, didn’t it? Mentors hate “can’t.”

    But before you act, make sure your mentor is giving you good advice, because that can be a problem too. And if it is, why is this person your mentor still? People can waste your time too, so don’t let them.

    Tip #4 – Report back

    Once you’ve taken your mentor’s advice, let him know. It shows that you can take direction and it makes him want to keep mentoring you. And then you’ll get more advice. But it’s lame to ask for more advice before you’ve acted on what you’ve already been given.

    In fact, don’t report back unless you’ve acted on advice. It makes you go from “interesting mentee” to “wasting my time” very quickly. See point #3.

    Tip #5 – Know the difference between a friend and a mentor

    Raise your hand if you wish you were friends with Barack Obama. Even most republicans would be all over this; but realistically, you probably won’t ever be friends with Obama by contacting him out of the blue about his policies.

    If you want to be friends with someone, don’t ask for advice; instead, invite him to a party, or meet up with him for drinks. And then let it be. Don’t contact him 15 hundred times afterwards for advice. Friendships develop naturally out of common interests and fun; mentor relationships develop professionally. Friendships develop out of mentor relationships too, but usually when the two become equals.

    So choose which relationship you actually want before you contact someone, and expect to wait for either the advice or the camaraderie, depending on which you pick.

    Tip #6 – Avoid public screw-ups at all costs

    This one is by far the most important, because when you ask someone for mentoring or contact information, you are borrowing that person’s brand. Mentors with power are afraid that their mentee will do something stupid and it will reflect poorly on them also.

    And honestly, of all these tips, #6 is what worries me most when I collaborate with others. The more power I get, the more guarded I become against these types of requests. And I think about how I’m nowhere near the top, and how people who really are at the top must feel. Do they worry about this too?

    Author:

    Monica O’Brien writes career advice for young professionals at her blog, Twenty Set. You can also follow her on Twitter (@monicaobrien).

    http://www.personalbrandingblog.com/6-tips-to-keep-a-mentor/
  • 06 Dec 2009 4:38 PM | Deleted user

    Written by Technical Recruiter, Marc Ingrassia

    My experience has shown that cover letters are more of a formality. I do technical recruiting so, I am more about skills than packaging. Keep in mind recruiters and HR people go through a lot of CV's daily so they generally scan resumes for qualifiers. (And, keep the cover letter short.) Here is a list of things I tell job seekers.

    Cover letters

    Mr. Hayes, I am responding to your paralegal position. As I am flexible with my work hours and have proven skills in computer and legal searches, I know I am equal to the job. I look forward to hearing from you in the near future.

    RESUMES:

    • Read other paralegal resumes and get a feel for what sounds good and what doesn't.
    • Imagine you are competing the resumes you read (because you probably are) and you are the one reading the resumes...ask yourself, what would make me stand out?
    • >Modify resumes to emphasize the qualities that the employer is looking for---within the realm of honesty, of course.
    • Use short, bold words and sentences.
    • Don't be afraid to promote yourself with descriptions...Adept at...expert with...excelled in..
    • Don't be overly fancy or cute. Just get the message out.
    • Remember, the resume is basically an invitation to come back and find out more about you...it's not a tell-all.

    Mark Ingrassia
    Technical Recruiter
    mark_ingrassia@yahoo.com
  • 22 Oct 2009 12:55 PM | Deleted user

    *****

    Are you searching for a job?

    Do you need to update your resume?

    *****

    Your approach to your resume and your job search in 2009 is totally different from any time in the past.  This can be both time-consuming and challenging!

    How will you locate legitimate job postings?

    How will you write a resume that get results?

    Find the answers here:

     

    A Blueprint for Your Job Search in Today's Digital World

     

     

    This 90-minute MP3 download and comprehensive handout provides you with a methodical approach to:

    • Craft a winning resume...
    • Write a perfect cover letter...
    • Conduct a successful online job search....
    • Create a professional presence on the internet
    • Locate contacts who will help with your job search
    • Understand the benefits of social networking
    • Learn how to choose and link to relevant job sites

     

     

    Here's one participant's opinion:

    “A Blueprint for Your Job Search in the Digital Age" was the most useful résumé/job search workshop in which I’ve ever participated.

    Thanks to you, I was able to condense my two-page résumé, bloated with “darlings,” into a one-page power résumé with an impressive “F-Zone.”  Every time I open the document now, I see at least one thing that could be improved, stated more succinctly, or moved into a more critical area of the “F-Zone.”

    I look forward to soon being able to report that my new and improved résumé (attached), cover letter and interview skills have landed me a job.

                                                             ----Margaret Agius CP (Westland MI)


     

    You will be provided with simple steps that will help you...

    ...Decode your cover letter sentence by sentence and your resume section by section

    AND

    ...Explain how your eyes “see” text and how your choices affect the way an employer reads your application documents.

     


    ********

     
     

    The Presenters

    Vicki Voisin, also known as The Paralegal Mentor, delivers simple strategies for paralegals and other professionals to create success and satisfaction by setting goals and determining the direction they will take their careers.

    She spotlights resources, ethics issues, organizational tips, and other areas of continuing education to help paralegals and others reach their full potential.  Vicki publishes a weekly ezine titled Strategies for Paralegals Seeking Excellence and hosts free monthly Mastermind Calls.

    Vicki received her B.A. degree in Business Management from Central Michigan University and received her Advanced Paralegal Certification (ACP) from the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) with a specialty in real estate.

     

      Charlsye Smith Diaz, Ph.D., is an assistant professor of    English specializing in technical and professional writing at  the University of Maine.

      She holds a masters degree in professional writing from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth where she wrote about law firm culture. She has served as editor and has written for Facts & Findings, the journal of the National Association of Legal Assistants and has written for GP Solo, a publication of the American Bar Association.

      Charlsye is also an education and technical communication consultant for the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) where she helped develop the Association's online specialty training program.

     

    You won't want to miss this important information!

    Your investment is only $27.00 for this high-content high-quality course.

     

     

    Vicki Voisin – The Paralegal Mentor
    PO Box 743
    Charlevoix, MI 49720

    ©Copyright 2009. Vicki Voisin, Inc.

     
     
  • 15 Oct 2009 1:34 PM | Deleted user
    Hello Mentees,

    Check this out:

    Great Job in Tough Times


    Here is the Great Job in Tough Times, tele-seminar "Social Media and Your Job Search: A Strategic Approach" with guest speaker, Leigh Henderson.  Leigh Henderson is Managing Director of Leadership Training Room based in New York City and provides executive and mentor coaching services.

    Date: Wednesday, October 21, at 8 pm EDT

    During this hour, Leigh will guide you through:

    • A strategy for creating your online professional presence.
    • The basics of:

      LinkedIn: Business Attire
      Twitter: Business Casual
      Facebook: Work/Life Balance
      YouTube: A great video is worth a thousand clicks
    • Managing your career with social media.
    (If you sit in front of a computer during the tele-seminar that would be great. We'll show you some examples live. Not possible? No worry we'll talk you through it.)
     
    Register here: greatjobintoughtimes.com .

    If you have any questions, please feel free to e-mail me at info@GreatJobInToughTimes.com.

    Jane CranstonAll the best,

    Jane Cranston 

    Jane Cranston
    "The Job Search Expert"

  • 12 Oct 2009 1:30 PM | Deleted user
    Attention Mentees:
     
    How are you? Fine I hope. How is your job search coming along? My job search tips are listed below:
     
    Go to Martindale.com (www.martindale.com) to do research on the law firms and legal speciality that you are interested in. Fax your cover letter and resume to those law firms.
     
    That is how I got all of my permanent jobs.
     
     
    Good Luck.
     
     
    Regards,
    Letitia M. Smith
  • 29 Jul 2009 1:25 PM | Deleted user
    Hi,

    Here is PDF attachment: Internet Your Way To a New Job - How to Really Find a Job Online.    
     
    Cordially,
     
    Letitia Smith
  • 30 Jun 2009 1:22 PM | Deleted user

    The Top Ten Job Search Engines on the Web

    Find a Job with Job Search Engines



    If you're in the market for a new job, you'll want to check out my list of the top then job search engines out there. All of these job search engines offer unique features and can streamline your job search efforts.

    1. Monster.com-Job Search Engine with Lots of Extras1

    2
    I've been using Monster.com for several years now and have always found it to be one of the best job search engines out there. You can narrow your search by location, keywords, and employer; plus, Monster has plenty of job search extras: networking boards, job search alerts, and online resume posting.

    2. Indeed.com- A Meta Search Job Engine4

    5
    Indeed.com is a very solid job search engine. Unlike Monster, you cannot submit your resume from Indeed.com, but the job search engine more than makes up for that by being a meta search engine of many of the major job search engines and job search boards out there. I've found that Indeed uncovers a lot of jobs that you wouldn't normally find on most job search sites, and they do a good job of making their job search features as easy to use as possible.

    3. USA.gov7

    8
    Think of USA.gov as your gateway into the huge world of US government jobs. Navigate to the USA.gov home page, click on the Jobs and Education9 section, then Government Jobs10. You'll find a wealth of resources here to help you find jobs working for Uncle Sam.

    4. CareerBuilder12

    13
    CareerBuilder offers job searchers the ability to find a job, post a resume, create job alerts, get job advice and job resources, look up job fairs, and much more. This is a truly massive job search engine that offers a lot of good resources to the job searcher; I especially appreciate the list of job search communities.14

    5. Dice16

    17
    Dice.com is a job search engine dedicated to only finding technology jobs. It offers a targeted niche space for finding exactly the technology position you might be looking for.

    6. LinkUp19

    20
    LinkUp is a job search engine that searches for jobs within company websites. Here are five search tips21 that will help you use LinkUp more effectively.

    7. Yahoo Hot Jobs23

    yahoo hot jobs24
    Yahoo Hot Jobs is one of the largest and most well known job search engines on the Web.

    8. SimplyHired 26

    Simply Hired27
    SimplyHired has been one of my favorite job search engines now for a while; mostly because of their SimplyFired28 contest. SimplyHired also offers a very unique job search experience; the user "trains" the job search engine by rating jobs he or she is interested in. SimplyHired also gives you the ability to research salaries, add jobs to a job map, and view pretty detailed profiles of various companies. I highly recommend SimplyHired.

    9. LinkedIn.com30

    31
    LinkedIn.com combines the best of two worlds: the ability to scour the Internet for jobs with its job search engine, and the opportunity to network with like-minded friends and individuals to deepen your job search.

    10. Craigslist33

    34
    There are all sorts of interesting jobs on Craigslist. Just find your city, look under Jobs, then look under your job category. Non-profit, systems, government, writing, etc. jobs are all represented here.

    This About.com page has been optimized for print. To view this page in its original form, please visit: http://websearch.about.com/od/enginesanddirectories/tp/jobsearchengine.htm

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