Uncle David has gotten every job he has ever gone for, so when he gives job-hunting advice, you better listen up. Join us every week for Uncle David’s 100% Successful Job Hunting Tip.


There’s no excuse to be generic in your job search anymore. With keywords, you can actually tailor your resume to any position you apply for, and you could do it in a way that will make you stand out to employers.

What are keywords? Let’s say the title of your last job was manager, and what you managed was inventory. You’re applying to a new job where you will again be managing inventory. Why settle for “Manager,” when you could change your last job’s title to “Inventory Manager.” It wasn’t your official title, but it was certainly what you did.

When an employer looks over a resume, first they scan the companies you worked for, how long you worked there, and then they look at your title. Your title needs to speak out to the employer. When you use tailored keywords like “Personnel Manager,” “Inventory Manager,” or “Accounting Manager,” they catch the employer’s eye far better than a vanilla keyword such as “Manager.”

If you settle for something as vague as “Manager,” the employer may never even read the bullet points for your past job. You may have a plethora of experience managing inventory, but because your keywords aren’t tailored for that particular job at that particular moment, employers may not even bother to look.




As a new adult, it’s time for you to start giving your boss regular updates on your progress.

We understand you’re busy, we get that you work your ass off. With so much on your plate, and so much more coming in, it’s more than a nuisance to take time off to send progress emails to your boss.

But all you’re doing is keeping them in the dark, leaving them to wonder, “What the hell is going on?”

Abdicating continued communication gives way to tension. Your boss thinks you don’t trust them enough to keep them in the loop. Think of the time you take out of your day to send progress emails as time spent building trust.

Shoot them a simple email saying, “We’ve handled this,” or, “We’re midway through project X.”

Trust and communication is what puts you ahead of others when being considered for a promotion. It would be shame if you miss this simple opportunity to build upon both because you can’t sacrifice a few moments of your packed day.




Harvard Business Review just released a study on work habits and we’re fascinated with one of the results they came up with: be a promoter, not a preventer. Let’s dive right into what this means.

A promoter keeps his eye on what he’s able to gain from a situation, while a preventer worries about what he’s going to lose in one. A preventer plays it safe.

Let’s role play this.

You’re a salesman, middle-aged, walrus-mustached and with a penchant for Westerns. Okay, maybe that’s too much role play.

Anyway, you’re about to close a deal and the customer is playing the walk-away game. When you’re in the preventer role, you start losing your hair over the tentative sale, and finally crack under pressure and begin spraying the customer with discounts.

But when you’re in the role of a promoter, somebody who looks ahead, then you’re thinking, “I have a great product. The customer needs this. If they walk away, they’re the ones missing out on a great opportunity. Even if they leave now, they’ll come back and buy it later. My product is that good.”

When you’re a promoter, you look to the possibilities of the future, of what can be done to make every aspect of your life amazing, from the products you sell to the family you care for to the sales team you work with.

What does the preventer think? “Oh god, I have the house to pay off, and the car and the gas and my family to support… if I don’t get this sale everything goes down the drain.” If you’re that guy (and sometimes you are), you’re afraid to shake things up. All you have room for in your arms is holding onto everything you have.  You have no room left for a better life, a better job and better opportunities.

So how do you blossom into a promoter, not a preventer? Trust yourself more. The more you desperately hold on to what you have, the more it slips away. It’s just the way it works, at home and on the job.




Email is such a large chunk of your life these days that your inbox management skills can be a big factor in getting you a promotion.

Your employer needs to know that you’re at the top of your game, and being organized and efficient with your inbox is a great way to show off your know-how.

Here are three tips to help you (smartly) manage your inbox:

  1. Don’t answer emails immediately. You’ll look like the guy that has nothing better to do than stare at your inbox all day, desperately waiting for contact from the outside world. Conversely, you don’t want to wait forever. So you balance these two extremes by…
  2. Not answering email during you peak performance time. Don’t waste your most productive hours of the day ripping your hair out trying to answer every… damn… email. Pick a few times of the day where you hunker down and hole up in your virtual trenches, like noon, 2pm and 5pm, or 11am and 3pm, or whatever. Don’t let emails hijack your precious time and distract you from important projects when you got your A-game flowing. You don’t want to eat breakfast, drink your coffee, get pumped and excited for the day and then spend the next two hours answering email, crawling out of the ordeal exasperated and frustrated at the wasted time.
  3. If you get a lot of email, like, a lot, we’re talking 100+, don’t even try to go back into your inbox to answer yesterday’s emails. Let’s say you get 200 emails today and you try to get back to a few people tomorrow, only to be buried under and new batch of emails. Let people know that you’re not the kind of guy who sits around your inbox all day (this ties in nicely with the first point). Inform them that if you don’t get back to them within 24 hours, they should forward you their original emails. And if you say you’re going to get back to them, make sure you actually do so.



Every once in a while, someone does something so outlandish and bizarre and so completely different from what people are used to, that no matter how awkward or mediocre the actual execution, that someone becomes an instant cultural phenomenon. You might have guessed from the title that we’re talking about Miley Cyrus’s… kinetic performance on last Sunday’s VMAs.

What’s our point? If you want to be phenomenal on your job, be like Miley.

Before you start throwing your old Hannah Montana DVDs at us, hear us out. If you get down to the nitty-gritty, Miley accomplished the very goal she set out to achieve: she reinvented herself and got everyone talking about her.

This is exactly what needs to happen at your office: people must talk about the risks you take, the unconventional ideas you bring to the table, the fearless approach you adopt in your execution. If you’re flying under the radar, diffidently pushing that same button day in and day out, afraid to stir things up, let alone shake them (or twerk them, if you will), then forget about it—you’re not going to get anywhere in your career.

You’re left with two options: you need to speak out or get out. Find a new job, get a different career. Because if you’re afraid to bring new ideas to the table, you’re never going to move ahead.

Miley certainly spoke up last Sunday. After all, she’s a pop star and that’s her job: to get noticed, to keep people’s attention centered on her, to be the talk of the town.

You can either view Miley as attention-hungry trash with no class, or you can view her as a smart employee. We suggest the latter. With her performance, Miley has made millions of dollars for her label. That’s the kind of employee that all employers salivate for: someone who can take extraordinary risks that make the company lots of money. In the days following the VMA performance, Miley garnered over 200,000 extra followers on Twitter, over 200,000 more likes on her Facebook page and around 90,000 downloads of her new single.

How long did we need her to be Hannah Montana? Miley created her own promotion, and that’s exactly what you need to do.

You’re sitting in your office. You’re a researcher, a junior analyst, a receptionist, whatever. You’re going through the usual quotidian motions: clock in, do what you’re supposed to do and clock out. How long do you think you will do this before getting a promotion? Five years? A decade? Probably never.

It’s time for you to speak out.

We know it’s hard to change. Just like it’s hard to imagine your straight-laced mom twerking and your dad grinding against her, or your coworkers witnessing you outside of your usual role. It’s the whole, “Johnny is the receptionist, and he’ll always be the receptionist” thing.

If you don’t want to be in the same position ten years from now, you need to step up and change the way you’re seen in the office.

Okay, so you’re all pumped up and ready to take the necessary risks and present your new ideas to everybody. There’s just one condition: you have to own them. After all, your ideas will most likely get shut down. But as long as you stick with them, we guarantee you that you will never be seen as the same person again. No one will ever just say, “Oh, she’s great in the mail room,” or “He’s good at answering the phones” again. You will be the person who tried to change the company for the better, even if your attempt fell flat.

So far, embracing change has been an abstract concept. We understand that you want some concrete examples, and we have ‘em. Here’s a smattering of tips to help you change the way you’re seen in the office forever:

Change your appearance:  You can begin by sprucing up your aesthetics. Not only does this work on a symbolic level, planting within you the seeds of change, but it can change the way people view you in the office. If you wear the standard lax shirt-and-khaki getup, start coming into work with a jacket and tie. Or if you already do so, modify your appearance in other, smaller ways: always iron your clothes, come in washed and neat, straighten your posture. You may understandably feel self-conscious and become frightened of what may people think of you. This is normal. Over time, notice the way people listen and react to you gradually change. It’s this shift in perspective that distinguishes you from other employees and puts you in the radar for a promotion.

Take a leap towards change: Say you’re a receptionist. You have a certain way of answering the phones and you’re great at it. Good. Step one is mastering the job basics—you don’t shower the office with your reign of reform if you can’t do your basic job tasks. Master the old stuff and then begin to see the flaws in the system. If you see faults in the messaging system at your receptionist job, send a memo out or make the suggestions directly to the supervisors. It’s about getting noticed and getting others on your side. Physically go up to your higher-ups and ask them what they’d like to see done with the messages. Make a poll, or a vote, or a suggestion box. Just don’t be afraid to act.

Add value to your company: The above case is a great example of how to contribute value to your company. Here are a few more great examples of value-giving: if you’re part of a new group of hires—junior analysts or restaurant workers or whoever—use your training experience to compile a new-employee handbook and distribute it among all new hires. If you’re a salesperson, come up with a plan for everyone to reach a new segment of the population. Instead of taking value and wasting company resources by doing the bare-minimum that any shmuck can do, contribute something new and fresh that will help not only you, but every employee. Adding value is not complaining about the gap—it’s about filling it.

Adopt Failing Up as a personal mantra: You can get promoted for thinking big, even if your idea isn’t that great or doesn’t play out as well as you thought it would. From ashes of failure rise opportunities for success. Once you take the risk of speaking out for the betterment of your company, you will get noticed by your boss as someone who brings ideas to the table. Even if the ideas don’t pan out, you’ll be a much better candidate that Joe Shmoe over in the next cubicle, who never failed at anything because he never attempted anything new and never took any risks. Your idea might land poorly, they might not work at all. But it’s no catastrophe. When you adopt a Failing Up mentality, you’ll be seen as the person who tried. And that’s a whole lot better than not being seen at all.

It’s only scary at first: We know—all this change stuff is scary as hell. You’re stepping out of the pack, putting your neck out into foreign country. Some people may talk under their breath, think you’re brown-nosing or showing off. Others may find the change of attitude strange and uncomfortable. But all this fear and discomfort slowly melts as you step into the role of a leader. Getting the ball rolling is scarier than when you’re actually leading the charge. When you’re at the helm, things begin to get fun and exciting. Now the hardest part becomes getting people on board, which brings us to our next crucial tip.

Find your allies: Having others—especially your boss—back you on your ideas is the best way to ensure the changes you proposed see the light of day. One great way of converting employees into allies is finding a problem everyone complains about but nobody does anything to solve. Basically, seek out the elephant in the room and jump on the opportunity to do something about it.

If you’re not willing to change and take risks, you’re basically condemning yourself to a life you don’t love. Go ahead, be quiet, slip past everything. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it, right? But realize that the pain of having to walk in every day and press the same button and do the same things will never go away. Nothing will change.

This isn’t what we’re about at Job Talk. We’re about playing big, kicking ass and taking names. We want you to come into the fray roaring, not whimper in a corner for the rest of your life. Be like Miley and reinvent the way you are seen in the office. Take the risk: no one will ever see you as the same employee ever again.




Things are getting crazy at the office: the situation is unraveling and everyone’s in a panic. Everything’s about to fall apart and you have two choices: use the pandemonium as an excuse to cower in a corner and allow others to settle the snafu in your stead; or say, “f*** it,” step up, play big and quell the turmoil.

The latter option is what allowed leaders like Gates, Zuckerberg and Gandhi (although we doubt Gandhi ever said “f*** it”) to become larger than life. This sort of attitude is what makes promotions happen. And it’s an attitude you must take on if you plan on climbing your career ladder.

But what if something’s holding you back, what if you don’t feel very big at all? Then we give you permission to pretend. Pretend to be the person you really want to be. If you want to be like Gates, imagine all the things Gates does to be, well, Gates.

Start applying the skill sets your role models use: face your fears, be on time, agree to take on more responsibilities, reinvent yourself daily and think big. Soon, you won’t have to pretend.


Businessman Crossing the Finish Line


When Edward Snowden became the nation’s biggest whistleblower, Glenn Greenwald broke Snowden’s story, and Laura Poitras filmed them both for her documentary, they weren’t being just a computer specialist, just a journalist or just a filmmaker. They used their jobs to band together to do something powerful. They stepped up to the mat, played big and made a huge difference in the world—and made history in the process.

When was the last time you did something amazing at your job?

You don’t have to max out your airport threat level just to play big and do amazing things at work. But you do have to walk into your job and blow up the paradigm; and you do need to try something new, something different every day.

Here are four tips to help you resuscitate your career, your life, and reinvent the way you see yourself at your job.

1. Recognize that you’re operating out of fear: You‘re tired of going to work day in and day out. Sometimes you feel like you’re just counting the minutes till your next paycheck, and it’s making you miserable. That’s not the life you want to have. But you’re having it because you’re operating out of fear. Whether it’s a new job opportunity or an opportunity at your job to make a difference, it’s easier to let it go than to put your money where your mouth is. Recognize that operating out of fear and laziness holds you back from having the life and career that you want. When opportunity is staring you in the face, take it!

2. Stop playing small: You know why you’re not getting that raise you‘ve been yearning for? It’s because you’re playing small. You’re sharpening pencils because you’re told to; you’re only taking on the responsibilities you’re required to do. Don’t just serve that hamburger, make it a full-on experience so people will come back. Change the restaurant. Don’t just sell clothes to customers to make a buck, reinvent the way the customer sees himself—teach him how to dress well, explain to him what colors go well with others. 

3. Get a partner who wants to make a difference: Get a partner in your life who loves you and cares for you and wants to make a difference in your life and at home—it’ll make loving life, and loving your job as part of your life, a whole lot easier.

4. Create a work action plan: What are two things you can do today and tomorrow that will help make a difference at your job? What’s something big you can do in a week? Get proactive and chart out what you can do to transform your job and transform yourself.

Here at Job Talk Daily, we abhor complacency. It doesn’t matter whether you’re polishing the floors or leading the company: you have the ability to make a difference and do something amazing at your job, and reinvent yourself in the process.



SHOW DATE: JULY 10, 2013

Millennials—your client or boss is not the same as your buddy or BFF (at least not during work hours). So why would your emails to them look like the drunk texts you send your ex-girlfriend every weekend? Wen u type like dis, not only do you sound unprofessional, but you insult the people you’re sending the email too. After all, these are the people who write your checks, and just as much as they need to learn your language, you need to learn their Baby-Boomer-speak—aka proper English emails.


By Aleksandr Smechov



SHOW DATE: JULY 10, 2013

Be afraid. Be very afraid. One out of every three workers is now a Millennial—you know, those 20-something, entitled, narcissistic snot-nosed brats that are taking over the world and leaving you in the dust your own fart kicked up. And by 2020, they will be half of the workforce. Did I mention be afraid?

Don’t worry; the world isn’t coming to an end. You still have a chance at survival, and you still have a shot at becoming the go-to guy who bridges the gap between the old and the new. Here are five steps that will help you elevate your status with the Millennials and get promoted in the process:

1)   Realize that you have to adapt:  you have to stop living in your world of blissful ignorance and realize that the Millennials don’t have to adapt to your old ways—you have to adapt to theirs. You might be asking, “why the hell would I do that? Our generation raised these kids!” Sound familiar? Yep, that’s your dad talking. And his dad talking to him. And his dad… well, you get it. So the next time you ask a Millennial to put their phone away and they give you a look like you’re asking them to kill their own mother, just remember, you’re in their world now. If you don’t adapt, you’ll die out.

2)   Understand where they’re coming from: OK, so you realize you have to adapt or you’ll stay stagnant (or, worse yet, out of a job), but you’re still baffled by the Millennials’ attitude, their insolent deflection of anything you try to impose on them. You accuse them of their wrongdoings and you try to act like their coach—after all, tough love is how you were taught manners—but to no avail; they still persist in their entitled ways. But what you have to realize is that Millennials don’t respond to tough love. Their parents didn’t tell them to eat their vegetables; they asked them if they wanted to eat their vegetables. Now this doesn’t mean all Millennials weren’t raised with tough love, but it does mean that most will respond better if you approach them in a less direct and accusatory way.

3)   Praise them before you criticize them: take note of this point and praise them before you criticize them. On to the next step…

4)   Change your ways, or risk becoming a dinosaur: Everything is changing, the world is changing, the workforce is changing. Are you going to be left behind? Here’s an example on how to adjust your mindset and keep up with the times. Are the young’uns’ phones out during a meeting? Don’t be mom or dad and tell them to put it away—they may be looking up something relevant that will push the topic in a more productive direction. Or they may be texting their BFF how badly they want a cheeseburger right about now. Either way, if you’re not going to accept that this generation is immersed in technology at all times then you’re going to become a dinosaur. And finally…

5)   Learn how to communicate on their level: let’s continue this point with step number four’s example. Their cell phones are out and it’s distracting you, and this time you know they’re not researching the meeting’s topic because their hands are under the desk and they keep stealing furtive glances at the speaker to make sure he’s not looking. Remember step number three? Try saying this after the meeting: “I wish I knew how to text as well as you do and keep attention to the meeting, but it really makes me feel like I’m not being heard, and it’s a bit distracting. So maybe next time we can agree to just not have the phones out?” Once you learn to distance that parental, tough-love approach your own parents used on you and begin to understand and reasonably speak with the Millennials, you will become the guy who understands them, the guy they can talk to when they want to communicate with the rest of the indignant geezers who scoff at them, and the guy who will ultimately get promoted.

At the end of the day, you’re going to be retired and they’ll be running the show. And that’s why you have to be a solution to the problem and bridge the gap between the old and the young, making the transition as smooth as possible for everybody. Basically, be their emissary. Not only will you elevate your status, but you will also further your own career because you will have the skills to adapt while most your age will stay sheltered in their conch shells of ignorance and elitism.


By Aleksandr Smechov




It’s easy to tell yourself to slow down when you’re overloaded with work. You know that if you don’t take a deep breath and relax, you might get so overwhelmed that you’ll shut down, or explode, or (worse yet) dramatically decrease your level of productivity. But slowing down is easier said than done, and most of the time, the advice is dismissed. So let’s try something more drastic: slow down, or you will lose everything. Your job, your co-workers, your family, your friends. All gone. Did that catch your attention? Good, now let’s move on.

So you’re one of those people who wears their busyness as a badge of courage. When a friend approaches you and asks you to join them on a night out, a little martyr in your head jumps for joy as you say, “I’m too busy, I’ve got too much work tonight.” You’re proud to be constantly busy. After all, it’s a natural stamp of success. But what you’re not aware of is that you’re close to a tipping point where being very busy can quickly topple over into being overwhelmed.

Remember those times when your life job rapidly transformed from being pleasantly full of things to do, to engulfing you in its hideous jaws of anxiety and exhaustion? It’s those moments when you are neck-deep not only in your own work, but other people’s work, their problems, your problems, approaching deadlines, unhappy family and friends etc. It’s at those moments when you get awfully close to cashing in your chips, getting on a plane and flying off to Rio to teach island kids some English. But some time passes, urgent issues get resolved and in a day or two you’re back to your busy, buzzing self.

What you don’t realize here is that you’re in denial. You sit on your emotions until they blow like a volcano—you burn out. And that’s damaging (unproductive) to everybody around you, as well as your health. You are alienating those around you who can actually help you achieve balance. But here’s some good news: you can be busy, successful and calm. You don’t have to burn out. Here are a few pointers to get you on your way:

1)   Avoid bad advice: quit your job. Get a new career. Change your environment. Anyone who says this, IGNORE THEM. You love what you do, why should you give it up? This is not a geography problem, it’s a you problem.

2)   Acknowledge your problem and get organized: ok, who let the psychotherapist in? Seriously, though, accept that you have a problem—you don’t know when (or how) to relax. Organize your thoughts and write them down. Why can’t you take a break every once in a while? Why do you leave it up to fate to decide when that tipping point occurs? Why aren’t you preparing for the busy season? And now that your thoughts are organized, why aren’t you asking for help?

3)   Ask for help, don’t be afraid to be a cog: go ahead, ask. If you’re emotionally and physically drained from work and you’re having a meltdown, ask your friends and family for help—a fun night out, a family get-together, a simple dinner. That’s why they’re there. At work, allocate some tasks to your co-workers. You don’t have to be a one-man show. Are you afraid that if you don’t do everything yourself you will be a simple cog in the wheel? That you won’t be Superman? Let’s try taking out a small cog from a mechanical watch. What do you think will happen? Shift your perspective—without you, things will stop working. But that cog can’t function alone. Asking for help is the key to giving yourself time to cool down and move ahead.

4)   Moving ahead: you dream of being big like Gates. But what you have to keep in mind is that things will only get busier and more stressful as you grow, and time and stress management are only going to get more important. Ask for help, know your function (and when to go outside of it) and take a breather every now and then—you’re not Superman, but you can definitely perform at his level once you know that you have to slow down and take a deep breathe once in a while. (Try this as well.)


By Aleksandr Smechov