October 25, 2021

How far would you go to land a job?

When you start job hunting, it usually involves shopping around your resume to your past or present work contacts, along with networking and applying for online postings.

U.K. resident Dan Conway took job hunting to a whole new level and it finally paid off when he landed a job as a marketing executive in the U.S., according to the Daily Mail.

The 28-year-old advertising graduate lost his job as a project worker at a youth center in June of 2012. He took on other odd jobs, but then decided to focus on breaking into the industry. He branded himself as the "extreme job hunter" and the young father of two put his skills to work for his most important challenge: marketing himself. He put up videos of crazy stunts he did, such as selling himself on eBay and even taking part in a gravy fight, all in an attempt to create a viral campaign. Well, it looks like he caught the attention of the right people.

This isn't the first time that people have pushed against the typical route to land a job. Another unemployed U.K. worker put up a billboard that was a part of his campaign to land a job in the media. After a month, he received 60 job offers in various positions, job hunter Adam Pacitti told AOL Jobs. His last 500 pounds (about $770 U.S.) was spent on that billboard it was well worth it.

Continue reading »

October 18, 2021

Should unpaid internships be allowed?

A backlash is brewing against the unpaid internship with many issues against this type of employment coming to light.

It's been recently discovered that if you're an unpaid intern in Ontario, you aren't protected by health and safety laws, according to the Toronto Star. While the provincial government is currently reviewing and reconsidering the law, there's no timeline on when any changes could be made.

This adds to a growing discontent expressed about unpaid internships. In Vancouver, there was a backlash against the Fairmont Waterfront hotel for offering an unpaid internship to bus tables. Another recent Toronto Star story showed that hospitality interns did the job of a cleaning lady during their internship. While two former Bell interns filed a complaint with allegations that the company broke labour laws when they weren't paid for the work they did.

Many young workers taken on unpaid internships with the number of them in Canada ranging from 100,000 to 300,000, according to the CBC. Young people have a tougher time landing a job, especially after the recession, and it's no wonder that they're trying any possible way to gain experience to jumpstart their careers.

Continue reading »

September 06, 2021

If someone gave you too much change, would you tell them?

So you're at the grocery store paying for your purchases. When you get your change and count it, however, you notice that you've been given change for a higher bill than you actually used.

Do you alert the cashier and give the money back or would you think "well, it's their fault for not being more careful" and keep it?

Does it matter whether you're shopping at Loblaws or your favourite farmers market?

Well, for many people, the answer seems to be ... it depends.

Continue reading »

August 28, 2021

Ouch! Employee fakes illness to skip work and then gets fired

Every year, sites like Careerbuilder and Workopolis ask hiring managers and HR professionals about the wildest excuses they hear when employees call in sick. And there's no shortage of whoppers, particularly since something like 50 percent of workers admit that they call in sick when they're actually not.

No big deal? Everybody does it, right? Well, the boss is on to you.

One survey found that 29 per cent of employers say they regularly check up on an employee to verify that the illness is legitimate, usually by requiring a doctor’s note or calling the employee later in the day.

In addition, another 18 percent have had co-workers call a suspected faker, and 14 percent have even gone so far as to drive by their home for a closer look.

All in all, some 17 percent of employers say they've actually fired employees for giving a fake excuse about being sick.

And you could be next. That's what happened to an Alberta technician who asked his employer for a day off to play in a baseball tournament despite being told that he couldn't have the time off. 

Continue reading »

August 02, 2021

The pros and cons of being a stay-at-home parent

According to the Child Care Advocacy Association of Canada (CCAAC), child care fees are typically the second highest cost to families next to housing.

Not only that, over 70 per cent of mothers are in the work force and yet there are only enough child care spaces for about 20 per cent of the families who need them.

Consider a single parent working at a job with minimum wage. The cost of child care far outweighs the income earned.

Continue reading »

July 25, 2021

Men and women do business differently

Men and women both have a passion for business. But how they do it is altogether different.

A new survey shows clear differences in the motivations and characteristics of men and women business owners, and how they got to where they are.

For instance the study, conducted by Pollara for BMO Bank of Montreal, finds that male business owners (65 per cent) are more likely than their female counterparts (56 per cent) to have acquired their role by starting their own business.

Continue reading »

July 23, 2021

What skills are Canadian employers seeking today?

As Bob Dylan once sang, The times they are a-changin'.

And so are the skill sets that Canadian employers are seeking to fill positions within their companies.

The Conference Board of Canada identified that Ontario alone is losing out on as much as $24.3 billion in economic activity annually because employers can't find suitable candidates with the skills they require to innovate and grow in today's economy.

Continue reading »

July 12, 2021

Canadian job growth continues at healthy pace

If you're still looking for a job, there may be hope yet.

According to Statistics Canada, employers across the country have added more than 250,000 jobs over the past 12 months and that trend is expected to continue.

Economic uncertainty is running rampant across the globe, but that doesn't seem to be the case here at home.

Continue reading »

July 11, 2021

Is it the end of the 40-hour workweek?

Is the 40-hour workweek still relevant in today's society?

In a report issued last month, the International Labour Organization (ILO) noted that reducing work hours can have a positive affect on employment levels during a severe economic downturn.

It also discusses the use of work-sharing to generate jobs and for the preservation of existing jobs.

I can relate to the latter.

Continue reading »

July 10, 2021

Healthy minds at work

There is a high cost to mental health issues.

Not only for those who suffer personally, but in the workplace with lost productivity due to mental illness.

Allan Ebedes, President and CEO at Excellence Canada, says, "A safe and healthy workplace is the product of committed leadership and strategic planning.

"In every organization, people are our most valuable resource and it is the joint responsibility of employers and employees to foster healthy minds and to safeguard them."

Continue reading »


Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...