Dear Experts, Are thank you gifts for references OK once I've accepted a job? I'm a new graduate and as this is my first job search, I have a few people who I would like to get small gifts to thank for helping me out. Not all of them are references, but a couple are. Is this completely taboo? Here is how our T.A.P. experts answered this question: @sweetcareers Q#186 Depends on reference, but it's ok to give a small gift. Books are a nice option. @ValueIntoWords Q#186 Agree w/it being OK to send small gift; if possible, personalize that gift 2 individual personality/preference. @louise_fletcher Q#186 Not at all! I think it's a lovely idea and that kind of thoughtfulness will pay off for you down the line. @DebraWheatman Q#186 Gift is unnecessary 4 providing a reference. nice thank you note is more than sufficient as expression of gratitude. @beneubanks Q#186 I sent a copy of the popular KnowHR book to my reference. It's a great way to say thanks and give back! @gradversity Q#186 I would just stick with a short, sincere thank you call. I don't think an actual gift is necessary. @dawnbugni Q#186 Expressing gratitude never taboo. Agree w/others thank-you notes sufficient. Small tokens OK too. @teenarose Q#186 Thoughtful! References believe in you ... gift is nice touch, but I agree with @jtodonnell, not required. @AndyInNaples Q#186 Big believer in "thank you" gifts and notes. Nothing extravagant. Always a nice touch. Shows you care. @jtodonnell Q#186 Not taboo, but not necessary. Thank you note will do. Helping others is part of being a good professional. Our Twitter Advice Project (T.A.P.) is no longer an active campaign. To find an answer to the above question, please use the "Search" box in the right-hand column of this website.
Want to be more productive but not sure how? Whether you are working or job seeking or both, using the following tips will help you bridge the gap between where you are right now and where you want to be in the future.
1. Time Management
Choose the best part of your day and use it wisely. Time management is a catch-all phrase for planning but without it very little gets done. I believe we must create our life and that goes with how and what we spend our time on.
For example, when I'm writing, I choose morning because that's when I feel most creative and can seem to channel my thoughts onto paper. When I was job searching, I would only accept an interview in the morning because I wanted to show up at my personal best and my energy is lower in the afternoon.
Not only will you look and feel better, but you'll also have a sense of accomplishment, which will create momentum in other areas. There are so many benefits to exercise and I'm a huge fan. Knowing yourself will help you engage in the right activity at the right time of day.
For example, I work out in the middle of the day because that's when I need a lift. I go to the gym because instructor-led group exercise is more motivating to me. Consider hiring a personal trainer or trying one of these activities: cardio, weight training, running, playing sports, yoga, Pilates, walking.
There are no excuses for not exercising. It is the single most important thing you can do for your health. It will also propel you forward in your work life and job search activities because you will feel good about yourself.
3. Being Reactive
Living in a non-stop world these days can wreak havoc on your health, relationships, and productivity. If you are someone who does whatever comes up and jumps from activity to activity, then chances are you aren't being very productive.
Multitasking is necessary at times, but I wonder if people actually accomplish more or less. I have seen incredibly people pull off multitasking and I'm in awe of their talent. Sadly, I'm not one of them. I'm someone who takes charge by starting and completing tasks before moving on to the next thing. Knowing which one of these people you are can work to your advantage and increase your productivity.
4. Priority List
It's a game changer. Either you run the day or the day runs you. Writing out a priority list on things that are most important to you right now will help you to stay focused on what you want and off of what you don't want. You've developed the criteria for making decisions and your life flows better because you're connected to what you want.
5. Setting Boundaries
I find it necessary to set boundaries with people because, when I do, it helps protect my energy and mood and I'm honoring my time. For example, I won't take phone calls in the morning. I have also stopped listening to victim stories because I find them very draining. I also choose to work from inspiration—not obligation—and this helps me eliminate time spent doing things I don't want to do and opens up time for activities that fill me up and move me forward.
6. Commuting And Traffic
Commuting can be such a huge productivity killer. People spend hours every week stuck in traffic. Do the research and see if there are ways that you can obtain the same results through an online meeting or phone call. Can you work from home? Plan what you will do to make your time in the car productive? These are valuable ways to reduce your time held hostage in traffic.
If you want to be more productive in life and in your career, focus on these six things first. Chances are at least one of these tips will work for you!
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This article was originally published at an earlier date.