Jaycees Presents – Crowdsourcing for Community Causes

Community engagement tipsAs you’re well aware, community involvement is what the Jaycees do best. There’s nothing quite like giving back to the community: you make a difference in someone else’s life while enriching your own. But as much as we like to do community service, there’s often a hurdle that stands in the way: funding. No matter how much man power you have, you can only go so far without the proper funds. If your chapter’s go-to fundraising activities fall short, another option to consider is crowdsourcing.

So what is “crowdsourcing”? It’s the practice of obtaining resources from a large community, typically an online community. All you have to do is set up your crowdsourcing site and explain your cause – and donations can be made via credit card or PayPal, right into your fundraising coffers.

The first step is to find a good crowdsourcing platform, and these should get you off to a good start. Once you have your page setup, it’s extremely important to get the word out about it. Most people don’t sit on these crowdsourcing sites just looking for places to donate – so use your network (both social and real-life) to spread awareness for your cause. Share links on your social media pages. Email your page to professional contacts. The more visible your crowdsourcing page is, the more donations you’ll receive.

One last important consideration: crowdsourcing is not something you should abuse. While most people love to donate to a good cause when they can, it becomes exhausting when their social media newsfeed is constantly inundated with inquiries to donate. Crowdsourcing should be reserved for major community projects that require a lot of funding – not every activity your chapter plans.

Has your chapter used crowdsourcing to fund community projects in the past? What tips do you have for other Jaycees? Visit our Facebook page and share what’s worked for your chapter.

Are You Making the Right First Impression? What to Wear to an Interview

Interview TipsThey say you only have one chance at making a great first impression – whoever “they” are, that is. So are you dressing for success when you meet a potential future employer for an interview? What exactly is dressing for success? Here are a few tips from your fellow Jaycees that will help you look the part at your next interview.

Stick to the classics. If you are unsure of the work environment at the place you are interviewing, keep it basic with items like slacks or a pencil skirt, a button up shirt and a blazer for the ladies; men should either wear a sports coat and slacks or stick to a suit. Either way, we recommend donning a tie. It’s never bad to be overdressed, but you can make the wrong impression by underdressing.

Dress for comfort. You can wear the most gorgeous heels, but if you can’t walk in them your interviewers will sense your lack of confidence. Men, if your suit jackets are too tight, it might inhibit you from making a proper handshake. The easiest way to solve this dilemma is to do a wardrobe practice run—get dressed in your interview attire, see how it feels and adjust if necessary.

Remember to have personality. Just because we said to stick to the classics doesn’t mean you can’t show off the real you. Don a brightly colored oxford shirt or a vibrant one to standout from the crowd. Men: don’t be afraid to sport your fashion forward oversized watch or even some colorful argyle sox. (They may go unnoticed, but they‘re fun regardless.)

When it comes to choosing the right clothing for your next interview, just remember to keep it simple, comfortable and don’t be afraid to express yourself within reason. Do you have any go-to pieces that you wear when you are interviewing? Visit our Facebook  and Twitter pages to share your apparel advice with us.

What Does Your Workspace Clutter Say About You?

Organizational tipsEvery office has one: the guy or gal that always seems to be just a step or two behind, frazzled, messy and has a workspace that’s cluttered. This co-worker could be producing the most amazing work and still, their reputation is going to remain as the messy, unorganized peer. Is that person lacking organizational skills?

If your desktop hasn’t seen the light of day in a while, you might want to consider improving your organizational skills – not only for your own sanity, but to start doing damage control on your poor office reputation. Getting started is the hardest part and this is where the seasoned vets at the Jaycees come in.

First, you need to physically organize your space. Every paper on your desk should have a home, whether that home is a folder, filing cabinet or outbox. Have any Post-it notes that have lost relevance long ago? Trash ‘em. Any crumbs or coffee cup rings on your workspace? Clean it ASAP. Once these tasks are complete, it will be a little easier to think.

Next, it’s necessary to get to the root of the problem: why are you so darn messy? Are you lacking in time management skills? If this is the case, be sure to allocate yourself just a few minutes every day to help you keep a clean space.

Finally, it’s time to delve into your digital disorder. If you haven’t been diligently deleting unimportant interoffice emails (ahem, reply alls) or work-related items that are no longer important, it is time to clear that clutter as well. This will help cut down on time when you actually need to find something in your inbox. And this is where you can get the extra time you need to organize daily! Funny how things work, right?

Just remember that you are not decluttering just because it isn’t easy on the eyes. Improving your organizational skills will undoubtedly help you in the workplace AND it will give your co-workers and boss a much better impression (hello, promotion!). Do you have any organizational tips of your own? Visit our Facebook or Twitter pages and let us know!

Improving Leadership Skills through Education

Leadership skillsAs members of a professional organization like the Jaycees, we tend to cultivate different skills through our social interactions with each other and in the workplace. However, is there a certain point we reach that we can no longer just count on these interactions to improve our skills? While we one never stops improving, one of the most effective ways to improve leadership skills is through education.

What is your leadership style? The best way to start improving your leadership skills is to understand the best way for you to lead. There are many quizzes out there that can help evaluate your dominant skills and determine how they help or hinder your leadership abilities. (Educate yourself here to find out the areas in which you need assistance.)

Learn more about communication. We don’t doubt that most Jaycee members are able to effectively communicate with one another, but how do you fare on providing one-on-one communication? Are you able to take nonverbal cues from peers/coworkers/team members that could influence your effectiveness as a leader? Communication is key when it comes to becoming a better leader so make sure that you are aware of what is required of you.

Be motivating. How do great leaders get their team to spring into action? Motivational leadership, that’s how! Check out some great tips to help yourself learn a little more about how to inspire those you lead here.

Consider continuing education. If you are interested in making a career out of being a great leader, perhaps you should consider furthering your education, With an additional bachelor’s degree or a master’s degree, one can become a ninja-level leader.

One great thing about being a member of the Jaycees is that we never stop learning, whether we simply listen and learn from our peers or we take the time to fine-tune the skills that we wish to improve. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a Jaycee, contact us today!