Tuesday, July 11, 2017

InboxDollars vs. SendEarnings - Which Earns You More Money?

I have been a member of both InboxDollars and SendEarnings since late 2015. After reviewing my previous earnings I noticed that I have made $55.55 more on the InboxDollars platform than the SendEarnings one. This was pretty surprising to me, as both offer similar money earnings tasks - or so I thought! Take a look below to see what InboxDollars offers in comparison to SendEarnings.

TV Earnings
One great addition to the InboxDollars site in the past year has been the TV section. Users are now able to earn cash by simply watching TV. Now I will say that you will not be watching Netflix shows or anything of the like. However the TV snippets include everything from trending stories, to tech, health, or celebrity specific news. Now, one thing that gets a little annoying is the fact that often times some of the same ads play on the screen, but if you can suffer through a few of these ads you'll earn a nice chunk of change by simply watching the news. You'll also get the option to play scratchers type games, where you have the chance to earn sweeps or up to $10 (at least $10 is the most I've seen). I typically play the TV when I am getting ready for work in the morning. (My way of killing two birds with one stone I guess.)... As I see those words typed, I realize what a horrible saying that is. I really have no idea why that phrase is used in American English to describe multi-tasking...
BTW - Sweeps are kind of like raffle tickets that you can place into a sweepstakes to earn money or gift cards.



Sunday, July 9, 2017

My Favorite African Models

I like to get motivation from models. Often times I look at their pictures to help me continue my journey to achieve my beauty and fitness goals. Looking at what could potentially be my end result really helps me eat healthier and workout. Of the many models that I aspire to, three happen to be African born. Here is my list of top African models!

1. Fatima Said

Whew! I have loved this lady ever since I first saw her on America's Next Top Model, Cycle 10. I always thought she was one of the prettiest girls on the show of any cycle. She is Somali-American and currently with IMG Models. She is 30 years old now and still extremely gorgeous. Actually she doesn't seem to have changed much since she was on the TV show. Simply FLAWLESS! Keep rocking girl.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Interview Question: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Winning a multi-million dollar lottery...

Becoming a travel blogger...

Married with 2 kids and dog...

What a fun question, right? This question gets you thinking and even dreaming about your future. But when this question is asked during an interview, what should you say? Why do employers ask?

Monday, April 24, 2017

3 Skills That Top PR Firms Look for in Candidates

FleishmanHillard, Weber Shandwick, Edelman. These are just a few large PR firms that many Journalism and Communications students alike yearn to work. But if so many want to work at these agencies, then competition will be tough. So how does one get in? Are there any skills that can make someone stand out from the crowd? Well of course there are! And I'm here to help. Below are a few things that will make you stand out.

1. Strong creative writing skills.

A variety of writing samples that showcase your best work should always be available and offered during the interviewing process. Actually, most firms will want to see writing samples up front, so present them in the beginning. Show that you are prepared and eager to provide samples of your work. Also, make sure you are able to handle multiple types of writing. Whether email communications, business plans, press releases, pitch letters or bylines, you should be able to handle  all of it well. Many firms will also have candidates complete a timed writing test, so don't be surprised if asked to complete one. 

Now that you know what is expected, what can you do to improve your skills? A good first step is to take as many writing classes as possible and to get feedback from your professors. You'll particularly want to connect with those that have a PR background, especially if they have worked at a firm you are interested in to possibly get a referral. Learn about why this is so important by clicking here.  

2. Good research experience.

Research, research and more research! This is a pretty nice percentage of what many PR interns will typically do for their account teams. The type of research may range from social media research and analysis, existing or potential client background, media/journalist contact details, and especially with our current climate -  political research and trends. Not only will having a strong research background help you, but also knowing how to present the most relevant information to your team and/or clients. This will help set you apart. Find good examples of how you done thorough research and analysis and presented it. 

3. Polished communication and other soft skills.

Both written and verbal communication needs to be well presented in any interview, but is extremely important when you want to work in the communications field. It's pretty clear why. This will include email, phone and in-person communications with colleagues, media and clients. In the interviewing process this will be shown through all interactions with HR and interviewers. Other soft skills or professional skills are very important as well. Particularly showing high initiative and an entrepreneurial spirit when taking on projects. Someone that can be a team player is also a plus. During the interview, give examples of how you initiated and led a project or how you organized and motivated a team. These attributes a very needed when working in a PR firm and will show that you have the potential to fit right in! 

Best wishes, 
Jess

Monday, April 10, 2017

Reviewing 2016 and Planning for 2017

One of my top goals for 2016 was to pay off a sum of student loan debt. I ended up paying off close to $10,000 of debt. This was a great accomplishment, but I still have a long way to go. I am so thankful to Dave Ramsey and his 7 baby steps to financial freedom. The approach he lines out is very easy to follow and more importantly IT ACTUALLY WORKS!

Dave says that in order to pay off debt, we need to assess our current regular income and expenses. Then we should locate where we can increase what we bring in and/or decrease spending. Next, he recommends saving a starter emergency fund in order to ensure that we will not add to our debt if or when a situation arises (this is what he calls Murphy - Murphy's law). Once the emergency fund is built of $1,000, we need to list out all of our debts from smallest to largest amount and begin putting any additional income to the smallest debt. Continuing down the list, we use the same process until the very last debt is paid off. This is called the snowball effect.  

Monday, March 20, 2017

Traditional vs. Creative Resumes?

During my time as a corporate recruiter, I had seen thousands, yes thousands, of resumes. Now that I am an HR Business Partner I see a lot fewer. It's closer to 25-30 a month. One thing I have seen job applicants struggle with the most is the resume. Particularly, many find it difficult to develop a resume that will stand out above other applicants.  Job seekers may ask questions like: What kind of information should be included? What should the layout look like? How many pages should it be? What is the best way to present my skills? There are so many things to consider when creating a resume. In this post, I give a few tips for developing the look of your resume. 

My top recommendation is to understand your job industry. 

Are you in a very corporate job function or a more flexible and creative one? You know the type of corporate job to consider, right? Accountant, lawyer,  banker, HR manager, etc. These professions will have a typical corporate culture, so the resumes in those industries are expected to be very clean and concise. Layout wise this will mean that the resume should be a one-pager (two at most), color-limited, and simply designed. Creative professions like designers, project managers, video editors, marketing and sales managers will have a lot more leeway. Wild colors, varying fonts, and cool artwork are all fair game. For those professional industry jobs previously mentioned, these things should be left out or at least kept at a minimum.  Black, dark blue  and white are about the only colors that should be shown. A clean font, like Arial or Times New Roman should be used to keep things standard and easy to read. Lastly, there should be no distracting design or artwork embedded into the resume unless it is very simple.  

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

How to Love (a poem)

Learning how to love is easy, 
Give of yourself in a kind manner. 
Remove all of your selfishness and 
replace it with affection. 

Learning how not to love is hard, 
to ignore that natural desire to care for another. 
Keeping your distance, 
holding all of your feelings inside. 

That is what must be done, 
In order for one not to give love. 

Love is easy. 

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Storm

When will the problems of life subside
Can I ever just be truly happy?
When will I live without pain
Without constant bad thoughts

I am not a pessimist
But at times life causes me to act like one
How can I be optimistic?
When everything seems wrong

It rains without end
There is no sunshine
No light can be seen
It is like a never ending storm

Monday, February 20, 2017

Are you still dreaming?

What is holding you back from your dreams? I ask myself that every once in a while. I recognize that I could be farther along in my career if fear was not holding me back. That is to say, fear coupled with doubt. I'm pretty certain that the two are best friends, because you will not have one without the other.

Fear and doubt visit you too, right? Don't make me feel like I am all alone on this. Here are a few examples of how they've appeared to me.

I dream of... going to graduate school.

Doubt: "But what if I can't get accepted into a graduate school?" 
Fear: "I don't want to be rejected." 

I dream of... purchasing a house.

Doubt: "What if I  lose my job and then have issues with paying the mortgage?"
Fear: "I don't want to have to foreclose and have a big financial mess."

I dream of... running a marathon. 
Doubt: "How will I run a marathon if I can't even run a mile now?"
Fear: "I don't want to fail and look silly to others."

The words and phrases "can't", "what if" and "but" are the building blocks of a wall that keep us from accomplishing and often times even starting to work on our dreams. I read a quote today by Les Brown that I want to share with others: 


Read that again. Say it out loud. Take action. You are the reason for your success. You can accomplish your dreams in 2017 and beyond. Get rid of the excuses that are caused by fear and doubt. The next time you think of an excuse to why you can't accomplish something, spend time thinking about a few ways that you can overcome the challenges. Don't give up before you even try. Take one small step to achieving your goal today. Then take another slightly larger step. Continue this and before you know it, you've made your dream a reality!   

Happy Stepping!
Jess