Vocational Rehabilitation Services with a Focus on Placement

Vocational Resources Plus LLC offers an array of vocational rehabilitation services with a focus on placement.

Vocational rehabilitation is a set of services designed to facilitate the return to work process (also known as placement) for individuals following a serious accident or illness that disrupted employment.

Placement is the bottom line of vocational rehabilitation, and therefore is the most in demand service.  Placement can be simply defined as finding suitable employment. Continue to read on for more detail on Vocational Resources Plus LLC’s placement services and procedures.Vocational Resources Plus LLC designs unique placement services to return-to-work problems that arise on workers’ compensation, personal injury and disability cases.

The objective of each placement assignment is to research key details on an individual’s employability. This information provides the base to plan for courses of action. Action is presented in the form of service delivery, case management, and reporting services.

The goal of each service is to identify strategies that are proven to achieve positive employment related results. The objectives that are set forth in a client’s plan will effectively place individuals back into his or her working world.  This ‘pathway to work’ expedites resolution, details the scope of occupational loss, and ultimately addresses the monetary figure of claim that is in litigation.~Vocational Resources Plus LLC offers one of the most comprehensive placement services available in the local market to address workforce issues and attributes of occupations. The value of designing a service specifically based on the individual’s personal background, work history, transferable skills, knowledge and abilities, coupled with his or her interests, aptitudes personality factors and various vocational related attributes is higher than the actual cost of providing the service.

The case is covered carefully while the individual and all representatives associated with the claim are provided with specific details of the situation to better understand the priorities of successful rehabilitation. All services are documented and a narrative report is useful to evaluate the claimant’s rehabilitation potential, to determine the extent of loss of job, or pay, or of employability.

Specific details on level of cooperation to secure employment, worker qualifications compared to existing employment opportunities, and compliance regarding recommended therapeutic intervention or physical exercise are a few examples that are assessed for the individual to adjust to their situation.Vocational Resources Plus is often called upon to help when a case is in litigation or has the potential to become overly problematic and costly. Referrals are welcomed from attorneys and self-insured employers!  The strategy of assigning your difficult cases to a knowledgeable consultant saves time and reduces long-term effects of any claim. 

MISSION STATEMENT

~ Vocational Resources Plus LLC commits to helping with the needs of its clientele by providing consulting services that exceed the standards of practice expected in the field of vocational rehabilitation.

 COMPREHENSIVE JOB PLACEMENT OFFERED THROUGH 

Vocational Resources Plus LLC

Job placement is a professional procedure. The purpose is to assist the job seeker to find a job matching his or her knowledge base, skill sets, abilities, work capacities, interests and aptitudes, as well as needs for location, work scheduling, level of earnings, benefits, plus more!

Comprehensive placement on average can take 4 weeks ~ 6-12 months (based on available employment opportunities and client cooperation). Placement is broken down into 4 phases: Information Gathering, Accessing the Labor Market, Placement and Follow-Up. Other services such as Job Seeking Skills Training, Vocational Counseling, and Outsourcing are available on an as needed, individualized basis.

Within the first few weeks of placement, the placement specialist may be able to discern if success at obtaining employment is likely or not. All case activities, research and results of efforts are reported. Expert testimony is available.

Phase I ~ Information Gathering

This phase is time intensive and involves meeting the client, orientation, paperwork, appraisal of qualifications and transferable skills, and participating in other preliminary processes. The individual’s skill set is matched with existing employment opportunities. Resumes are prepared, reference building is performed, specific, information details are gathered and goals are set.

Timeframe: 1-3 weeks. The placement specialist can spend from 10-15 hours per week on preliminary processes. The placement client spends as much time as necessary to support this phase.

Phase II ~ Accessing the Labor Market

This phase involves designing a flexible marketing strategy to assist the client in establishing informational interviews and job interviews. Results are evaluated to help make decisions and to clarify career choices. It involves identifying and contacting businesses in appropriate markets and industries to assist with finding adequate profiles of persons to meet marketing needs and job opening requirements.

Timeframe: Commonly starts in the 3rd week and continues as long as feasible opportunities are identified, up to approximately the 6th week. The placement specialist averages 5-10 hours per week. The placement client spends as much time as necessary to support this phase.

 Phase III – Placement

When the client has sufficient opportunities available and is cooperative with placement procedures, this phase unfolds. When the client is placed, follow-up occurs at appropriate increments. If the client is uncooperative or if excessive barriers do not allow for a successful transition into the workforce, other Vocational Resources Plus, LLC services are available or referrals can be made.

Timeframe: Starts at approximately 3 or 4 weeks into the assignment, depending on the client’s situation and continues until placement occurs. A minimum of one month of post-placement services are offered. The placement specialist averages 1-5 hours a week. The placement client spends as much time as necessary to support this phase.

*Phase 4 ~ Follow-Up Post Placement

Once a final job offer is accepted, the placement specialist will extend involvement to assist the newly-hired individual in various aspects of transition, including any steps that must be taken to resign their position from their current employer. Post-assignment contact is also maintained between client and employer to assure the mutual satisfaction of both parties.

Timeframe: Starts at time job begins, depending on the client’s situation and continues until mutual satisfaction of both parties. The placement specialist averages 1 hour a week for four weeks. The placement client spends as much time as necessary to support this phase.

Thanks for reading….now give me a call!  There’s a sample employment packet the client receives, it’s located on my website. Take a look around at all the resources available! I have even more to share!

515-282-7753 or email VocResources@gmail.com

    lcpresourcesplus.com

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 My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people participate in the world around them, particularly in their own world of work.

 

Pops is Tops! Thank You for all your Hard Work in Alernative Education!

Thank you for congratulating Randy! In thinking about it, all in all it is a pretty cool deal! Although it’s died down, last week he kinda had enough with being the celebrity (ha ha ha!) …in the paper, on the news, in various internet stories, and on a digital billboard or two in town….see below….

According to the Des Moines Register, Randy’s Tops!

Scavo teacher is tops in alternative ed

Mike Wellman 9:35 a.m. CDT April 17, 2015

des.adm0421 randy botkin.jpg

Smile Silly : \

Scavo Alternative High School teacher Randy Botkin was named the 2015 Iowa Association of Alternative Education (IAAE) educator of the year.

Botkin has worked in the Des Moines Public Schools system for 22 years, all of them in an alternative school setting.

“I had the pleasure to work alongside Randy as a teacher at Scavo from 2000 to 2003,”Scavo principal Rich Blonigan said in nominating Botkin for the award, “and now again as principal. During my time as a colleague, Randy has exemplified what it means to be a teacher in an alternative setting. Randy has great rapport with students and families. He has the ability to connect with his students and motivate them to do their best.”

Botkin received the award at the IAAE annual conference April 9-10 in Davenport.

The educator of the year is presented to an alternative educator who is making a significant contribution to alternative education in Iowa. This award honors one individual each year.

Botkin’s award comes on the heels of last year’s induction of longtime Scavo teacher Steve Peters into the IAAE Hall of Fame.

Des Moines’ alternative school program dates back to 1968 when the Greater Des Moines Education Center opened on Forest Avenue. The center moved one year later to the city’s north side.

In 1972, a second alternative school opened on the south side. That facility, Alternative South, was renamed for former principal Vincent C. Scavo in 1995.

Scavo has moved to a few locations since then and in January it moved a renovated space at Central Campus that includes on-site services like a medical and dental clinic, counseling and food pantry.

***

2015-04-27 Congrats Botkin

Watching this…so exciting!

Pops Is TopsArin our beauty, likes to call her dad “Pops” Pops is Truly Tops!

Be sure to thank your own dad (or hubby/partner) for their hard work! Have a great workweek! It’s a beautiful day!

Let me know how I might help with a personal injury or workers’ compensation case that would benefit from vocational consulting or life care planning! As well, I can help answer vocationally related questions on a divorce case.  Call me 515-282-7753.

___________________

My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce

Got Motivation?? Let’s See!!

Did you take the Why Do You Do Your Work assessment? Read on and at the bottom of my blog, you’ll find a key with detail on your results!

Motivation describes why a person does something. According to current psychology, motivation involves biological, emotional, social, and cognitive forces that initiate, guide, and maintain goal-oriented behaviors requiring endurance to keep going and the ability to persist through obstacles in spite of difficulties.

As part of my work, I’m commonly asked to give my opinion of a person’s motivation to find work or keep work (in the realm of job search or job retention). This x-factor of success is extremely difficult to determine. Yes, I can easily uncover a match in skills, education, and experience. And I have motivation scales available which help.

However, creativity in interviewing that generates specific examples from a person’s work history provides further evidence coupled with the best and most reliable method of assessing a person’s level of self-motivation, which is talking with the person’s previous or current supervisors.

interviewI love to interview and gather detail!

Motivation can be used to explain behavior, and in general intrinsic motivations (driven by an interest or enjoyment in a task) arise from within while extrinsic motivations arise from outside the person (and often involve rewards such as money, trophies, social recognition or praise.)

Favorite trophy

I got these swimming trophies when I was young!

There are 3 major components to motivation: activation, persistence, and intensity. Activation involves the decision to initiate a behavior. Persistence is the continued effort toward a goal even though obstacles may exist. Intensity can be seen in the concentration and vigor that goes into pursuing a goal. Each of these components can be assessed and described in detail.

A few signs of self-motivation in a job search (considering obstacles) that I can report on and/or testify to include:

  • Applying to numerous businesses each week.
  • Performing informational interviewing as well as direct interviewing.
  • Scheduling time to research companies and using results to benefit job seeking “marketing” campaign.
  • Critiquing one’s own job search and learning from efforts.
  • Participating in short term skill building activities while in job search mode.
  • Volunteering in a useful and purposeful area.

If currently employed, I have also been asked to provide my opinion of a worker’s motivation to do their best at work (again, considering obstacles). A few signs of self-motivation on the job that I can report on and/or testify to include:

  • A history of doing more than just what is required.
  • Consistently exceeding performance expectations.
  • A history of working the amount of time/hours necessary to get the job/project done, not just the “required” hours.
  • Participating in activities that will benefit the bottom line of the business.
  • Helping and supporting co-workers and supervisors
  • Sharing talents and information openly, in an optimistic manner

In summary, success in a job search or success on-the-job requires self-motivation. If there is proof of high achievement that can be duplicated (once again, considering obstacles), strong self-motivation is suggested.

Why Do You Do Your Work?

2015-02-06 Red Rose I DestroyedThe key along with information on your results:

Motivation Results and Descriptions

Intrinsic motivation: 4,8,15;

Integrated regulation: 5,10,18;

Identified regulation: 1,7,14;

Introjected regulation: 6,11,13;

External regulation: 2,9,16;

Amotivation: 3,12,17.

***

Intrinsic motivation refers to behavior that is driven by internal rewards and is inspired solely from the interest and enjoyment a person finds in an activity.

Integrated regulation arises when a person has fully integrated a motivation within, and behavior is influenced after undergoing self-examination and then internalizes and assimilates the reasons behind an action. S/he has carefully explored external motivations and decided that they’re congruent with his or her other personal beliefs and values.  An example of integrated regulation as motivation would be a person who attends church through the belief the act aligns with a personal belief system, even if the person doesn’t attend for the sheer enjoyment of it. The person doesn’t feel guilt or shame if s/he doesn’t attend, s/he attends because it feels right and suitable.

Identified regulation is when a person has personally identified with the importance of a behavior and accepted it as a regulation of her own because it benefits her in achieving a goal, she’s motivated by identified regulation. With this form of motivation, the individual doesn’t have to find enjoyment in the behavior, and there doesn’t have to be an immediate reward. The person also isn’t motivated by guilt or shame: She simply recognizes that a behavior is beneficial toward her development and adopts that behavior as her own. For instance, a person may recognize that studying grammar for English class is an important means to the end of becoming a successful writer. This is a subcategory of external motivation that’s more self-determined and personal than external regulation: External regulation may be for a more immediate positive reward, while identified regulation is used to achieve an end that affects an individual’s personal well-being and desires.

Introjected regulation is motivation from an internalized, pressuring voice. The source of motivation for a behavior is guilt, worry or shame. Introjected regulation inspires an individual to enact a behavior not because s/he wants to, but because s/he fears not to out of a sense of obligation. An example of introjected regulation is a person who goes to church every Sunday because s/he fears a negative effect in the afterlife or the negative reaction of peers at a church event — s/he doesn’t necessarily find enjoyment in the service itself. Avoid this form of motivation if at all possible, as it fosters anxiety. When succumbing to this form of motivation, it’s difficult for individuals to feel positive and confident about their actions.

External regulation. People are motivated by external regulation due to an external acting influence. If an individual exhibits a behavior to obtain an externally provided reward, then her behavior is externally regulated. For example, if a person enters the science fair because she wants to win a gift certificate for a restaurant, she’s not acting out of what interests her personally but out of a desire to obtain the reward. External motivation is often used to encourage employees or students to take part in a behavior that they must complete but may not be genuinely interested in — that way, even if they don’t otherwise wish to engage in the behavior, they do so to obtain the reward.

Amotivation is a state of lacking in any motivation to engage in any activity, characterized by a lack of perceived competence and/or a failure to value the activity or its outcomes.

Sources for above are taken in part from http://www.ehow.com/info_12153839_5-different-types-motivation.html

Do you want more assessment information or want to read more! Here’s an earlier blog about motivation? And here’s one about Randy and his work ethic. Read on! Call me! 515-282-7753

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My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people participate in the world around them, particularly in their own world of work.

Why Do You Do Your Work? You May Be in Love!

I hope you had a fantastic weekend. Are you happy to be back at work?! I hope so. Do you love your job? I hope so. What motivates you toward your job? Is there a match, or a mismatch?

love my job mutuallyPersonally I am in Love with my Job!

Recently I met with Lin Phillips, a career counselor who is very skilled and talented at helping people “see the light” regarding what makes them tick at work…and in life. If you love your work, your life feels so natural. Not sure if you’re really in love yet?

Using the Why Do You Do Your Work? self-assessment scale below (or download a copy), indicate to what extent each of the following items corresponds to the reasons why you are presently involved in your work. Then ask yourself why. Send the scale and any of your notes if you’d like back to me and I’ll let you in on your own motivation!

[Please note I do not know the origins or where I found this scale and have made edits and additions for my blog. If anyone knows of its source, please let me know.]

2015-02-06 Red Rose I DestroyedWhy Do You Do Your Work?

Does not correspond              Corresponds moderately         Corresponds exactly

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because this is the type of work I chose to do to attain a certain lifestyle.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. For the income it provides me.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

  1. I ask myself this question, I don’t seem to be able to manage the important tasks related to this work.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because I derive much pleasure from learning new things.

 1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because it has become a fundamental part of who I am.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because I want to succeed at this job, if not I would be very ashamed of myself.

 1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because I chose this type of work to attain my career goals.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. For the satisfaction I experience from taking on interesting challenges.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because it allows me to earn money.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because it is part of the way in which I have chosen to live my life.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because I want to be very good at this work, otherwise I would be very disappointed.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. I don’t know why, we are provided with unrealistic working conditions.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because I want to be a “winner” in life.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because it is the type of work I have chosen to attain certain important objectives.

 1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. For the satisfaction I experience when I am successful at doing difficult tasks.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because this type of work provides me with security.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. I don’t know, too much is expected of me.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 

  1. Because this job is a part of my life.

1                 2                 3                 4                 5                6                 7

 Your Notes: ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­

 

Image result for motivation

It’s an Organic Carrot!

Stay tuned for test results and descriptions of motivators based on this scale. Are you motivated to continue to read my blog! I hope so!

 

___________________

My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce

 

A Success Story About A Veteran I Was Proud To Help

Following through with my last post on honesty, here’s the success story I mentioned:

During the placement process, I assess the client on his or her take of honesty at work using interview techniques, a self-report scale, and ensuing discussion. I’ve heard great stories.  I remember one client, a veteran I helped ~10 years ago when I had a contract to provide vocational services to VA Voc Rehab. The veteran (served in Nam) wanted a more suited job using his many transferable skills.

One day, while he was at work cleaning the men’s restroom at the I35 rest area near Osceola, the veteran found a wallet filled with cash. He called his supervisor who drove to the rest areas to retrieve the wallet, and it was returned to it’s owner.

Lost Wallet, Honest Worker

What makes this story even more honest is the veteran was being paid ~$6.00 an hour to clean the rest area (all areas and facilities inside and outside). The wallet he found was filled with enough money to have paid his wages for nearly 2½ weeks of work (cleaning disgusting toilets, working out in the cold, being treated like poopy by people who just want to get in and get out…) And he returned it all. All.

References are Golden Nuggets!

To help with placement to a better job for the veteran, the supervisor, following my request and with my help wrote a superb reference letter. The letter helped with the success of this veteran securing his new job. He was hired at Homemakers Furniture where he made use of his transferable skills (one was leather upholstery) and excellent work references along with the help of the VA’s hiring incentive program.  Nice work! I love this success story!

Back to me for a bit. A story of mine about honesty ranks up there too and simply put, that’s what a morally and ethically sound person does! I’ve returned found cell phones, various personal items, coats, neighbor’s mail, and money. Yes, money, in fact thousands of dollars.

Find cash on the sidewalk down the street! Get shortchanged? Too much change? Overpaid? Underpaid? What do you do?! A money dilemma!

Okay, here’s why I’ve literally returned thousands of dollars. As an independent contractor I more often than should happen experience  a long, long wait to get paid for my work. Not fun and not fair.  In fact, not that long ago I waited months to get paid, and then I received three checks in three separate envelopes for one invoice. Of course I returned the duplicate checks!

check

It literally added up to over $6,000!

Since 1999 when I started my business, I’ve been overpaid probably about six times. I couldn’t tell you why, but I return the checks…and pay postage doing so. And since 1999 I’ve been NOT paid once. I still remember it. It was for my hard work performed on a complex case. My final invoice totaled ~$500 and for some horrible reason the insurance company didn’t pay me. Ironic the [workers’ comp] case ended up being a NON permanent total disability. Needless to say, I won’t accept assignments from that representative any longer. Okay, I’ll stop…but could write a lot about unethical people!

I’ve written papers on my work and ethics. Please visit my LinkedIn Page to read the papers or call me at 515-282-7753 and I’ll send you copies.

___________________

My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce

I’ve Served as a Guinea Pig. Wheek! Wheek!

More on volunteering. As you will see, I have on my resume that I have experience as a guinea pig! Yes indeed, to help counseling practicum students (BTW: I’m currently available to help). I received free counseling sessions (!) while the student practiced. The sessions were videotaped and then viewed with the professor for a grade!

Einstein

 This is Einstein. I preferred to call her Peggy!

Our beloved guinea pig died earlier in the spring 2013. She was a very nice pig. I miss her wheeks! A wheek is the loud excited noise guinea pigs make when they are excited! Wheek, Wheek! Peggy is also the name of the woman who gave us our new pet! Peggy the human (an Iowa State professor) and I connected via Craigs List. She was listing free guinea pigs but the babies were all taken, so Arin and I got the momma!

Arin (my daughter, whose shirt you see) named the pig Einstein, can you guess why? But, again I preferred to call her Peggy. She lived for several years after her arrival to our home. She really was a great pet. Back to the post Amy:

When you’re looking for work or are changing jobs or even careers, consider your volunteer activities. If they’re not on your resume or professional profile, stop right now and describe them! You can incorporate those skills and abilities into your next position or you can enhance them now with your work! Wheek, Wheek!

There are so many more benefits than gaining valuable skills from volunteering. Take a look:

Benefits of Volunteering 

#1: Volunteering connects you to others

#2: Volunteering is good for your mind and body

#3: Volunteering can advance your career

#4: Volunteering brings fun and fulfillment to your life!

 Wheek! Wheek! Wheek!

and then look at or download this 5 page attachment for more information! It’s titled: Volunteering and its Surprising Benefits ~ Helping Yourself While Helping Others.

Hope you have great volunteering experiences….with more in store in your future.

___________________

My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce

 

Congratulations to my Beautiful Daughter….She Starts a New Job Today!

As I mentioned in last week’s post, Arin was in interviewing mode. She found success! Today she starts her training at the Des Moines Public Library. My daughter, a librarian aide! I love it. She is so excited! It’s a part-time position, which the library does for all aides, that pays pretty good! She will continue at Walgreen’s as well, so will be working plenty of hours. Do you remember what job(s) you had at age 18? Click here for my earlier work history.

AJ the L

Arin the Aide To the Rescue!

I have blogged about Arin in the past and my grandma’s love for reading. Reading helps in lots of ways; one being that your vocabulary will become larger and more sophisticated. I remember one of my professors at Drake University (Dr. Bob Stensrud!) said something along the lines that a strong vocabulary is a sign of high intelligence. I’m sure there’s plenty of variances on that statement from people much smarter than me, but I agree that intelligence drives the need to acquire the vocabulary in the first place.

On Saturday, Randy and I took a road trip. When we realized from listening on the radio that the Cyclones just might win, we decided we needed to watch the second half! We found a nice place in Oxford, Iowa and stopped on in. There were some buddies hanging out at the bar and one was kinda making me sick. He was a “chain swearer”. You’ve heard one. F this and F that in almost every sentence. And when watching college football on a big screen tv, you can imagine what I heard. Yuck!  I will admit I heard myself say “Poopy” over and over towards the end of the ISU game….

I thought hummmm is my theory that people who swear excessively have low vocabulary levels and corresponding low intelligence? I don’t know, but there are studies out there I’m sure. I do pay attention when interviewing evaluees about their use of profanity and will report on it (while also offering counseling “advice”) as it certainly affects one’s view of professionalism in the workplace.

Profanity BoyPeople Swear, and Unfortunately I Am One of Em

But I don’t want to and I do notice it when I swear and chastise myself! And I try to stop hubby too. And Arin. And Jake. And Nick….and on and on! When my mom swears (not often) I sure take note! Woah!

I cringe when I hear a person swear in professional environments (and on the playing field…and  especially in front of children). I certainly hope Arin doesn’t let a big “F-bomb” out when she is at work at the DMPL (frown upon for sure!) She won’t! [I’m making her read this post…]

Back to the point of this blog and successful interviewing. The keys to a successful interview are preparation and practice. Let me know how I could help and download this tip sheet titled on Interviewing.

P.S. Don’t swear during an interview! Use the best communication skills you have!

P.S.S. My grandma Jean’s favorite “bad” word was “Horrors!”

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My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce

Happy Labor Day…Raise the Wage!

Today on The White House Blog there is a great post which is a copy of a message sent today by Labor Secretary Tom Perez and features his friend Ms.  Austraberta Rodriguez.

Mr. Perez writes “So today, if you’re ready for a country that does right by Austraberta and the nearly 28 million Americans who stand to benefit from a $10.10 minimum wage, then honor them by adding your name here

I sure did!

I just added my name to support raising the minimum wage. It was last raised to the existing $7.25 an hour on July 24, 2009 (our Iowa minimum wage rate that is, which is the same as the Federal minimum wage.) The time has come. Click here for more info about reasons to and reasons not to raise the wage.

I choked the other day seeing a loaf of bread for over $5! How much is that cheese? That much for butter!!  No way!!!!  Then all the other high food prices starting yelling at me. I had to run out of the grocery store!

Workers Need to Make More Bread!

How can people work and make ends meet at. It is hard to believe. My daughter questions why pay is low. She wants to move on in her life, but struggles with how she can do so. Plus recently her car died. Arin continues to work at Walgreen’s however she is in interviewing mode for another job that will pay more. (She may still continue to work at Walgreen’s.)

Click here Arin and and my readers for more information about Raising the National Minimum Wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour.

I’m into the Department of Labor lately! Here is another excellent link about

Books that Shaped Work in America

I read the summary of a book titled The Receptionist: An Education at The New Yorker written by Janet Groth and published in 2013. I am interested in reading this book as it brings back many, many memories of my days as a receptionist (teaching me incredibly valuable work skills.) I was paid temporary worker wage way back them, which commonly was more than the minimum. Which I would say 25-30 years ago I probably received like $5-6.

Receptionist

Hold Please!

I’m going to spend more time reviewing the content on this website! Very cool. The website also offers information on what each title in their growing collection of books has to do with the U.S. Department of labor.

“The Department of Labor touches almost every aspect of working in America”

Hope your Labor Day is happy and safe! Enjoy yourself!

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My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce.

Alison is a Nice Name ~ Advanced Learning Interactive Systems Online

Alison stands for Advanced Learning Interactive Systems Online. Alison is an online open source educational website that provides over 500 high-quality, certified, multimedia courses, free to individual learners and groups of learners.

Free Online Courses

Open source learning is exciting!

Alison helps the user to develop essential workplace skills. There is a plethora of choices. You can chose from courses in Business & Enterprise Skills, Finance & Economy Skills, Languages, Digital & IT Skills, Personal Development & Soft Skills, School Curriculum and Diploma Courses. These courses are standards-based and certified. It can be somewhat overwhelming to go through the site to find what you are interested in taking.

You can earn a certificate or a diploma, which indicates the learner completed courses and scored 80 percent or above on the online assessment. There are vocational courses at “certificate level” (1 to 2 hours of study) or “diploma level” (about 9 to 11 hours of study).

Most of the courses are in a PowerPoint style presentation, though a few are audio or video intensive.  The courses appear to parallel job training and certifications I’m aware of throughout the course of my career and by various online resources.

I have used the website to take a diploma course in Legal Studies earlier last year. However, I chose not to become certified because it costs money to print out a certificate. If I were wanting to enhance my skill set for a law office, I would think the attorneys and staff would be grateful of this new knowledge. But I do not work in a law office!

This website would be good for people whose job prospects are constrained by their skill levels and who lack the resources to upgrade them through conventional training. I recommend this website to my placement clients, especially those who may have been out of work for a period of time. I explain that certifying in an area that they are interested in can reveal to a potential employer that you as a job seeker took a learning course on your own accord. This reveals you are a worker who wants to learn something new that would benefit others in the workplace.

It shows you, the job seeker, engaged your brain! You are ready to use your new skills at work. Plus you can list your learning accomplishment on your resume and application! And talk about what you learned in your job interview! Sounds good doesn’t it!

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My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce.

Reference Letters are Golden Nuggets!

A reference letter can provide potential employers or consulting prospects with an idea of someone else’s understanding of who you are and what qualifications and characteristics you bring to the table.

Reference letters are like golden nuggets because not many job seekers use them! 

As I wrote about in a recent blog on retirement from writing for a women’s publication, I asked for a reference from the person who hired me and here it is:

Reference Letter from Kelcie Warren Women’s Edition

Open me!

I always recommend using 3 recommendations (verbal): consisting of 2 people who have first hand knowledge of your work productivity and 1 person who knows you out in the community. Of these 3 people please ask one to write you a reference letter!  You’ll be happy to have one around whether you need it or not!

I have written several recommendations for others.  A well-written reference letter is also a source of support during a job search! Read it and feel proud of yourself!

 

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My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce