Work You Can Sink Your Teeth Into

Powell River farmers from Lund to Saltery Bay and Texada Island are having trouble keeping up with the demand for their products. The Powell River Living publication Home Grown reports that thanks to a growing local food movement in Powell River, “the need for more farmers becomes more apparent”. The number of registered farms with the Regional District has jumped from 2 to 83 in just over 10 years. If food production in Powell River is poised to grow, then more work in the fields and seas could be in our future.

This is welcome news when you consider some of the latest demographics for the sector. The Canadian Federation of Independent Business says nearly 70% of Canada’s farmers plan to retire in the next 10 years. Furthermore, the 2011 Statistics Canada Census of Agriculture reports that farm operators under the age of 35 represented only 8.2% of the total in 2011, which is less than half the proportion of 19.9% two decades earlier.

Attracting new entrepreneurs and transferring existing farms to the next generation of producers is an important issue facing some of the 19,759 farms operating in BC including those in Powell River. Among those tackling this issue are the Powell River Regional Economic Development Society and the Powell River Farmer’s Institute. Their initiatives include: recruiting new farmers to our area, devising financial supports to help farmers get into business, identifying the inventory of underutilized or unutilized land that could be brought into agricultural production, and creating a database to match potential buyers or lessees with available farm lands.

To see where food is growing and work may be available in Powell River, check out this map . Powell River Direct’s Business Directory is a good resource too; especially for locating meat and seafood suppliers. When researching the field, don’t leave out visiting local food events, markets and online networks like the Powell River Food Security Project. Our local food producers are largely self-employed entrepreneurs who hire seasonally. These jobs are best found through networking and are occasionally advertised locally. Larger seafood producers do advertise year round seeking full-time workers. Jobs include: labourers, product packers, technicians and deck hands. 

At Career Link we have Employment Counsellors, resources in our drop-in Career Lab and contact information to help you find work in this industry or any that interest you. There are lots of ways to get started with your job search, to learn more: give us a call, drop by the office or attend the next Career Link Info Session. Try it! It’s Easy and Free!

Gone Social: Career Link’s Facebook Presence and YOU

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Gone (Seriously) Social.

It’s not a secret that Career Link’s Facebook page is a fantastic place to start your local job search, but we thought we’d point it out anyhow. Our resident Labour Market Information (LMI) and Career Lab team maintains this resource of local jobs that complements our ever-popular emailed free Job Alerts (sign up by simply entering your email address at the bottom of any of our website‘s pages).

While Job Alerts are usually emailed to our subscribers once a day, reflecting new job postings sent to us by local employers, our Facebook page is updated continuously throughout the day and displays all employment opportunities in our region, whether they are sent to us or not.* Our Career Link team seeks out sites like Indeed.ca, wowjobs.ca, local Craig’s List job postings, The Powell River Peak job postings and ads, job postings at Vancouver Coastal Health, the City of Powell River and Powell River Regional District‘s websites, Service Canada, Kijiji, Vancouver Island University, School District 47, Catalyst Paper, and many more individual local business sites, giving you with a comprehensive up-to-date look at what’s out there. In addition to this, you will get LMI and job-related links to online articles and videos that enhance your job search, as well as reminders about special programs, courses, and workshops that might interest you. Best of all, you don’t even need to have a Facebook profile to make use of our page — but we’d like you to “like” us, so we encourage you to take full advantage with your own Facebook profile. Be creative if you have privacy concerns; you don’t need to use your real name on Facebook.

For a review on how to search for work yourself, and quickly, you can attend a free workshop at Career Link called “Surfing the Job Banks Online” offered every second and fourth Monday of the month at 1PM (call to reserve: 604.485.7958). Other workshops are also available. See our calendar here or drop by Career Link and sign up for a handy bi-weekly orientation sessions (Tuesdays at 9:30-10:15AM and Thursdays at 1:30-2:25PM); sign up in person or call 604.485.7958. Attendance at a Career Link Orientation Session is required before scheduling an appointment with one of our amazing Career Counsellors.

* Career Link posts these positions as a free service for the community. Career Link does not screen employers or applicants, and assumes no responsibility or liability for the job postings. Any arrangements are between the job seeker and the employer.

Step by Step: Conquering Procrastination

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By Susan Biagi

Procrastination is one of the many challenges confronting jobseekers. And yet, the rewards of conquering procrastination far outlive the job search. In an age where so much emphasis is placed “soft” skills, people’s abilities in the areas of time management and communication position them for greater success at work.  The following are some tips to help overcome this barrier:

  1. Avoid focusing only on the easy tasks. Often we never get to the most important jobs because we’re so busy doing all the easier, less important activities. For some people, surfing the job banks is painless and fun. While important, job banks should never be used as a replacement for face-to-face contact with employers. If this is the case, turn off the computer, put on your coat and shoes, and head out the door.
  2. Avoid unnecessary checking of email. While necessary to a job search, email can be a huge time waster.
  3. Make a list of the most important job-search tasks, such as updating your resume, asking friends and family for job leads, or compiling a list of employers.  Prioritize these activities from most to least important, and begin with the first item on the list.
  4. Tackle one job at a time: “Today I’ll work on my cover letter,” or “Today I’ll write my phone script.” Write the jobs in a daytimer, or record them in your smart phone. Be sure to give each job a deadline.
  5. Write down and analyze all the reasons why you might be procrastinating. These could range from a lack of tools, such as an updated resume, to more ingrained barriers, such as a fear of meeting new people. Choose one small hurdle to overcome, one that you can begin to work on right away.
  6. Break big jobs into small steps. Instead of  “update my resume,” try the following:
  • make a list of all your jobs in the last 15 years
  • update the contact information of all former employers
  •  list any training you received
  • choose and download a resume template
  • insert your information into the template
  • ask a friend to proofread
  1. Refuse to wait until you “feel like” doing something. Accept that you will never feel like doing it, then get started.
  2. Ask a friend to accompany you on your job search. Choose someone who cannot be easily persuaded away from a goal. Remember, too, to build a reward into the day: after dropping off three resumes, plan to take a break together at a coffee shop.
  3. Meet with an employment counselor at Career Link, and ask to be held accountable. Request a list of tasks, with deadlines.
  4. List all the short-term rewards of procrastinating, such as getting to watch your favourite tv show. Then draw up a list of long-term consequences, such as bankruptcy or your EI running out. Ask yourself if a tv show is worth the pain of being broke.
  5. Leave your house. If there are too many distractions at home, work at the library, your favourite coffee shop, or Career Link. Set up an alternative “office” and make it a place where you only do job-search tasks. (Resist the urge to check your Facebook page while at the “office”!)
  6. In your cover letter, tell the employer that you will be calling on a specific day, to follow-up. Remind yourself that avoiding this task will have serious consequences.
  7. Forget about perfection. Each time you contact an employer, treat it as a learning experience. If you stumble, focus on correcting your mistakes and contact a new employer immediately.
  8. If fear keeps you from contacting employers, break the process down into several steps:
  • Write a script and practise in front of a mirror, your partner, or your dog
  • Contact “easy” employers first, such as a former boss, a friend in business, or someone for whom you’re not that keen on working anyway
  • Tell yourself that you’re contacting a particular employer just for the practice. That way, it doesn’t matter so much if you stumble in your delivery
  1. Give yourself a pep talk. Instead of telling yourself, “I’ve got a big, ugly job to do that I’m probably going to mess up,” say, “I’ve introduced myself to plenty of strangers in the past and this is just one more person to get to know.”

Jobseekers struggling with procrastination are invited to meet with a Career Link employment counselor. Simply call 604.485.7958 to start the process. Try it. It’s easy and it’s free!

 

 

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