Monthly Archive for February, 2008


More employers than ever before will be basing increases in compensation on performance for this year. In 2007 this meant the top producers got pay increases in the range of 5.7 percent; the next highest 4.5 percent. The lowest rated 1.7 percent. The average was about 3.8 percent. The same can be expected in 2008, according to Mercer Human Consulting. That’s just about the rate of inflation.

But that’s only part of the story. Employees classified as “executives” received incentive payouts averaging 47 percent of their base pay. Those in “management” got 22 percent.

For the sake of our blood pressure, we won’t go into the pay packages for CEOs.

Mercer Consulting reports that employees’ contributions to the company are increasingly being compared against others in their departments, as well as all employees in the organization. And higher raises go to the best performers in certain departments such as information technology.

Despite the talk of a recession, it’s an “employee market”. The competition for top talent is heated. So employers are offering signing bonuses to get the best producers. Also, many employers provide more flexibility on the job. This includes telecomuting, flex time and compressed workweeks.

The message is clear: If you want to get ahead you’ve got to produce.

I wish you success!!!

Ramon Greenwood, Head Career Coach
Common Sense At Work

P.S. If you find this and other postings on this blog interesting and helpful on your career path, I think you’ll want to take a look at my f#ee semi-monthly newsletter, The Career Accelerator. Click here for more information.

Are You Making Enough Mistakes To Succeed?

If you are not taking a chance now and then, you are not making an all-out effort to achieve success. That’s true because mistakes are the handmaiden of taking the kinds of chances that lead to success on the career path.

It’s been said that “Good people are good because they come to wisdom through failure. We get very little wisdom from success…”

Mel Kiper, a sports commentator for ESPN, declares, “You can’t be right if you’re always afraid to be wrong.”

Career Tip: You’re handicapped in your pursuit of career success if you are working for an employer who insists that you always be right.

“Assert your right to make a few mistakes,” advises Dr. David M. Burns. “If people can’t accept your imperfections, that’s their fault.”

Here are some words of wisdom from Mary Pickford, the famous actress: “If you have made mistakes, even serious mistakes, there is always another chance for you. And supposing you have tried and failed again and again, you may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing that we call ‘failure’ is not falling down, but staying down.”

I’ll have some further comments on mistakes on a posting tomorrow.

For more common sense career advice Click Here.

I wish you success!

Ramon Greenwood, Head Career Coach
Common Sense At Work


F*ee Career Advice

Unless things are going exactly to your liking on your job, you ought to consider this offer.

This is your chance to receive f*ee personalized career advice from now until March 15. No obligation, no charge.

All you have to do is “Post A Comment” below, describing any issues that may be affecting your career. I’ll respond with my best opinion as to actions you may take to help solve the problem. Hopefully, others who visit the blog will share their thinking, too.

Please post your comments anonymously.

I can’t guarantee the results, but I believe that participating in this blog can help you deal with the challenges you are facing everyday on your job.

Let’s work together to accelerate your career success!

Ramon Greenwood, Head Career Coach

You Should Be Sleeping On The Job

If you are not snoozing now and then at work, there’s ample reason to think you are missing an opportunity to enhance your career.

A survey by the National Sleep Foundation found that 50 million Americans get on average of 6.7 hours sleep on weeknights. (Eight hours is recommended.) Just over one-half of the adult population say that drowsiness keep them from being as productive as they could be.

This problem could be alleviated considerably, according to the experts, if the sleep deprived made a practice of taking a catnap (powernap, if you prefer) during the workday. Sara C. Mednick at the Salk Institute, says, “…napping is a necessary and effective tool that can be used by anyone in the pursuit of optimum health, happiness and productivity.”

Makes sense, but it is easier said than done because employers at large haven’t embraced the idea.

So, we are most often left to taking a nap on the sly: nodding off in a restroom stall; reclining on the backseat of our cars in the parking log; sprawled out on the couch in the employee lounger; resting one’s head on his desk. More than one person has been known to crawl under his desk for a nap break.

Some degree of relaxation can be achieved with a nap lasting five minutes or so, some studies show. Twenty minutes is probably the magic number. Beyond that gets to be deep sleep, which is to come back from.

Career Tip: Figure out a way to take that powernap on the job. You and your employer will benefit. Napping is not wasting time.

Let me know what you think via your comments on this posting.

I wish you career success!

Ramon Greenwood, Head Career Coach
Common Sense At Work


Career Advice

Anyone can get the axe at any time in the current environment of economic turmoil. It happens to good people and bad ones…hard workers as well as slackers.

Are you prepared to deal with this traumatic eventuality?

The current issue of my career advice newsletter, The Career Accelerator (c), provides 13 career tips on how to survive and prosper if you get fired.

Contact me at for a copy.

Ramon Greenwood, Head Career Coach