A directory of resources inthe field of technical communication.

Hamer Associates

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But I Don't Know Anyone: Networking 101 for Introverts   (members only)

'But I don't know anyone is a common response when I give people the advice to build their professional networks. What they really mean is 'I don't know anyone who can give me a job.' This protest and response is missing the point. Networking is not justabout finding work. It's about building a professional network of peers who keep in touch on a professional level, who can help each other out from time to time, share pertinent information, and keeping your mind in shape.

Hamer, Emma C. Hamer Associates. Careers>Collaboration>Community Building


Circumventing HR: Effective Job-Hunting Strategies

A common misconception is that Human Resources departments exist to help job-seekers find their place within a company. In fact, the role of HR departments is to act as the gatekeeper. Savvy job-seekers know how to get around, over, and bypass the gates of HR, to connect with the decision-makers who can really help you. 

Hamer Associates. Careers>Interviewing


Review: Improving Individual and Corporate Performance

Managing a team (of writers) somehow is supposed to come naturally to those it is thrust upon. And, of course, it almost never does. Richard Hamilton has succeeded in coming up with a book that - quite effectively, and covering a wide range of topics - answers this ubiquitous question. In a very real sense, Richard’s book is the voice of experience and wisdom that should have been made available when you first got the promotion.

Hamer, Emma C. Hamer Associates (2009). Articles>Reviews>Management>Writing


Management by Emotional Blackmail

Arrogance comes out in the apparent belief that whether the employee has any say in the matter, or has a better idea, is irrelevant in the manager’s mind. Might is right, and if the employee sputters, then the employee is clearly at fault, a troublemaker. The key to neutralizing this type of manager is for the direct reports to band together and decide what they’ll accept. And - as a cohesive group of employees - to work with your HR advisor to express your discomfort with the manager’s particular communication style. Because ultimately, this type of nasty manipulation is deeply disrepectful and dismissive of staff’s qualities and talents. Which makes this behaviour a significant negative factor in the retention of key staff - they will simply no longer put up with it.

Hamer, Emma C. Hamer Associates (2009). Articles>Management>Collaboration


Management by Proxy

Also known as ’The Wizard of Oz Syndrome‘ - this management style is similar to Management by Avoidance, except the ‘thing’ being avoided is corrective or disciplinary actions - or any kind of confrontation with staff, basically. The main theme is: get someone else to deliver the (unpleasant) message, whether it be about cost reductions, getting a slipping schedule back on track, or a lay-off, or resolving a simmering conflict. Why? When the Boss has a strong need to be liked - or feared - (rather than respected), the risk of any direct confrontation is that people might get upset and react emotionally. Especially for hyper-rational “geek” bosses - originally (software) engineers or accounting types - the messy gray area of human interaction is a scary place.

Hamer, Emma C. Hamer Associates (2009). Careers>Management


Networking? or NOTworking?   (members only)

Networking expands your resource base and enables you to make useful contacts in other companies, which, in turn, leads to your big break or an exciting new job. The prevailing attitude seems to be that it doesn’t really matter what industry you’re in, or at which level within a company your position is, just go out there and do it, and the results will follow. It does work, doesn’t it? Well, not really.

Hamer, Emma C. Hamer Associates. Careers>Collaboration>Community Building


Outplacement: Why It Doesn't Work

If you are offered career transition support as part of your severance, do yourself a favour and opt out of the collective program, but find out how much has been set aside for the outplacement program. Then, ask your HR department to hold those funds for you until you can find an independent career consultant to work with, on an individual, tailored-to-your-needs, custom program. Independent career consultants like myself can work with you for a much longer period of time for the same budget the company is prepared to allocate to the big firm. When you find your independent, personal career consultant or coach, they can invoice your former company, and your ex-employer’s conscience can rest easy. And you can then arrange with your personal career coach when you want to start and how fast you want to go. At your convenience, not theirs.

Hamer, Emma C. Hamer Associates (2009). Careers>Unemployment>Advice


Stand Out from the Crowd

Enhance your competitive edge by highlighting the talents and skills that make you unique. Understand what sets you apart, learn to articulate this, and find ways to market yourself.

Hamer, Emma C. Hamer Associates. Careers>Collaboration>Community Building


Understanding Workplace Dynamics

Building a team used to be simple. You assembled a number of people with the same tools, education, skills and experience, you told them what to do – and they went and did it. With the information revolution came new ways of working and managerial insights, and a complex minefield of individual competencies required to 'do the job.' Emma Hamer demonstrates how assessing and assigning team roles—determining how people will use their tools, and in particular how they will interact and work together towards a common end-goal—can improve the dynamic of a team.

Evans, Conni E., Emma C. Hamer, Rahel Anne Bailie and Elizabeth Babcock. Hamer Associates (2003). Careers>Management>Workplace


You Can Do More: Exploring the Edges of Your Skills and Talents

When the going gets rough, the rough get out of their ruts and get going. When the economy takes a turn for the worse and jobs are scarce, it's time to look beyond the skill set described in the standard résumé. It's time to brush off the dust and re-invent yourselves, to make your not-so-obvious skills shine in markets where we can find employment.

Hamer, Emma C. Hamer Associates (2003). Careers>Education>Continuing

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