Employer Catnip

‘JT & Dale Talk Jobs’ is the largest nationally syndicated career advice column in the country and can be found at JTandDale.com. Dear J.T. & Dale: At my last job as an assistant manager at a hair salon, the owner asked me to sign a non-compete clause. I applied for a manager position at another salon and was selected. When I told the owner about it, she threatened to sue both me and the person hiring me, so I told her I would not go. A week later, the owner told me she "accepted my resignation," although I'd made it clear to her that I was not leaving. She said she was doing me a favor by letting me resign, rather than be fired. — Samantha J.T.: The truth is that a lawsuit is a costly process, and your old boss probably wouldn't have sued you. But you never know, so I understand your decision to stay. Dale: And now the non-compete still may be shadowing you. It would be well worth the cost of an hour of an employment attorney's time to get some questions answered, including, "Is the non-compete even valid?" According to the "Guide to Workplace Law" from the American Bar Association, a non-compete "is enforceable only if the company has a substantial right, unique to its business, that it is trying to protect." (It goes on to give an example of a company with an employee who'd been given specialized training developed by the company.) I'd hate to see you have your employment future restricted by a non-compete, which is supposed to protect a company's rights, not keep you in employment bondage. J.T.: Yes, get the non-compete behind you. Then, when it comes time to explain your last job in an interview, keep it short and positive. Explain the facts of how you ended up leaving the last job, and then say something like this: "I learned a lot from the experience and am glad that I'm now free to find a new position. I am really committed to this profession and want to find a salon management role that will let me build a thriving practice for my employer." The key is to move forward by talking about the future, while saying nothing negative about your past. Dale: And never forget what your past is telling a prospective new employer: You already were offered a manager's job, and your old boss wanted to fight to keep you. That's employer catnip — everyone wants to hire a person other employers desire. jt-dale-logoJeanine "J.T." Tanner O'Donnell is a professional development specialist and the founder of the consulting firm, JTODonnell.com, and of the blog, CAREEREALISM.com. Dale Dauten resolves employment and other business disputes as a mediator with AgreementHouse.com. Please visit them at JTandDale.com, where you can send questions via e-mail, or write to them in care of King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St, 15th Floor, New York, NY 10019. © 2010 by King Features Syndicate, Inc. Photo credit: Shutterstock

If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the awkward situation one of our viewers, Diane submitted. She has recently worked with a co-worker on a group project. When it came time to present the project at a meeting, Diane let her co-worker present. While it went great, the co-worker proceed to take credit for nearly all of Diane's work. Frustrating to say the least!

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In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if your co-worker took credit for the work you did...right in front of your colleagues AND boss!

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

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If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the awkward situation one of our viewers, Cam submitted. He's been working at a job for awhile, but recently overheard a hiring manager making fun of a candidate with autism right after an interview-not only awkward, but VERY unprofessional!

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In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if witnessed a hiring manager at your organization making fun of a candidate who they had just interviewed who had autism.

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

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Starting a family is one of the biggest milestones in a person's life. It's in those first few months when a parent can really bond with their newborn and make lifelong memories. However, for some new dads, it can be difficult to juggle being a new parent while remaining dedicated to their career.

Fortunately, some companies have generous paternity leave policies that give new dads the ability to take time off of work to stay home with their child.

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There are LOTS of questions around resume dos and don'ts. There's so much advice out there that it can be overwhelming to try and figure out what's the correct answer.

During our weekly live Office Hours on YouTube, two of our coaches, Ariella Coombs and J.T. O'Donnell, answer questions live from viewers related to their job search, career success, on the job situations and more.

We complied a simple list of what we find to be the most common questions our coaches get about resumes. We hope you find this helpful.

Let's start with the basics...

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Back in March, we made the hard decision to change our private Facebook group of over 37 THOUSAND members to a fee-based only platform.

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In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if a recruiter called you a day EARLY for your phone interview (and you were NOT PREPARED!)

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

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