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  • Career Woman

    Good Reads for Women (Week of 6-30-…

      Here are the top shares of the week, along with some good links we caught this week that we think…

    Good Reads for Women (Week of 6-30-14)

      Here are the top shares of the week, along with some good links we caught this week that we think make good reads for women! Enjoy and feel free to post other links we should explore in comments below. ~ InPower Editors Most Shared of the Week How millennial women are redefining leadership at work – Guardian Five Communication Traits That Turn People Off – Forbes 3 Steps that Can Change Your Career  – Women On Business   Top shared quote of the week:  “Never interrupt someone doing what was said couldn’t be done.” -Amelia Earhart   On InPower Women – Top Post of the Week   How Women Can Embrace Their Power – Marcia Reynolds   Like this quick scan of the good reads for women? Get InPower Women blog posts in…

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  • Career

    7 Reasons This Is An Excellent Resu…

    Writing your very first resume can be a daunting process. And it doesn't help to know that recruiter…

    7 Reasons This Is An Excellent Resume For Someone With No Experience

    Writing your very first resume can be a daunting process. And it doesn't help to know that recruiters spend an average of six seconds reviewing a resume before they make the initial decision on candidates, according to research conducted by TheLadders, an online job-matching service for professionals. "Many students don't know what should and should not be included in their first resume," says Amanda Augustine, a career expert at TheLadders. "While there are no hard and fast rules when writing a resume, it really depends on what content you have to work with, there are some preliminary guidelines all students or new professionals should follow." She says the most important things to think about when you're creating your first resume are your job goals and your audience.…

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  • Career Coach

    4 Secrets to Effective Communicatio…

    “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” ~ George Bern…

    4 Secrets to Effective Communication

    “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” ~ George Bernard Shaw The inability to clearly communicate is one of the single most problematic issues in life. Poor communication can ruin relationships, thwart business endeavors, and even start wars. Imagine how much of an impact effective communication can your own life, whether it be in your relationships or at your job. If you want to communicate better, and subsequently improve your personal and business relationships, you first need to understand how to communicate clearly. Two Ears, One Mouth Just like mom told you. Effective communicators listen far more than they speak. There are several reasons for this. First, listening is gathering information, and when you communicate about a subject, it’s always best…

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  • Career Coach

    How Hierarchy Is Killing Your Cultu…

    Twenty-first century organizations are flattening, but the change can’t happen quickly enough. Altho…

    How Hierarchy Is Killing Your Culture

    Twenty-first century organizations are flattening, but the change can’t happen quickly enough. Although the corporate hierarchy was invented to promote efficiency, it doesn’t work particularly well in a business world that moves at the speed of technology. If you’re holding on to the old, bureaucratic ways of doing things, you're hurting your business. Don't believe me? 1. Hierarchies Move Too Slowly Organizations need to be able to adapt quickly to changing market conditions, but a complex hierarchy is like a lumbering giant. As Harvard professor John Kotter told Debbie Robins in The Huffington Post: “Put simply, a hierarchy can’t handle speed well. Rules and procedures that inevitably accompany hierarchies almost never change fast even if they are now irrelevant, overly burdensome, and the…

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  • Career

    Preparing for #HR Assignments in An…

    Today’s question deals with an issue I think more HR pros will be contemplating in the future – inte…

    Preparing for #HR Assignments in Another Country – Ask HR Bartender

    Today’s question deals with an issue I think more HR pros will be contemplating in the future – international assignments. Hi Sharlyn. I love your site and read your blog every day! I’m an HR professional in Canada and am hoping to continue my HR career in the U.S. next year. I know there are a host of differences between national and state laws, but am wondering if you have any tips on where to go in order to become familiar with U.S. HR-related law ahead of time. Thanks! I’ve worked with several professionals who’ve had global assignments. And, I’ve had some international responsibilities myself, although I’ve never lived outside the U.S. There are two main considerations when you think about international roles…

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  • Career

    How To Make Friends When You'r…

    One of the things they didn't tell you about adulthood is that it's hard to make friends.  Take it f…

    How To Make Friends When You're A Grown-Up

    One of the things they didn't tell you about adulthood is that it's hard to make friends.  Take it from the New York Times, who report that as you get older:  "it becomes tougher to meet the three conditions that sociologists since the 1950s have considered crucial to making close friends: proximity; repeated, unplanned interactions; and a setting that encourages people to let their guard down and confide in each other ... This is why so many people meet their lifelong friends in college." So once you're out of college — and, say, moved to a new city — those conditions are harder to meet.  Take New York for example: You have to be super dedicated to schlep to see your buddy on the…

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  • Career

    Here's One Thing Young Adverti…

    The internet has fragmented the advertising industry, creating more opportunities than ever for youn…

    Here's One Thing Young Advertising Creatives Should Be Doing To Get Ahead

    The internet has fragmented the advertising industry, creating more opportunities than ever for young people to try new roles and prove their worth to their employers. Last week, Jay Haines from Grace Blue, the ad industry executive search firm, told Business Insider about what newcomers to the business should be doing to get ahead. Haines, Grace Blue's CEO for North America, told us that in addition to the obvious (work hard, take on additional responsibilities, etc.), young creative types looking for a promotion can do wonders for themselves by learning how the business side of their company works. Since agencies are increasingly being paid on a per-project basis instead of an annual payment promised in advance, Haines said firms are looking to chief financial officers…

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  • Career

    How to Know It's Time to Quit Your …

    As the economy improves, many people are considering leaving jobs they've stuck with for fear of not…

    How to Know It's Time to Quit Your Job

    As the economy improves, many people are considering leaving jobs they've stuck with for fear of not being able to land another position.But before you quit, think of this:1. Are you thinking clearly? Don't quit when you're feeling panicked or stressed by too much work and just want a way out. Don't make decision in the heat of the moment. Quitting should be something you have considered when everything is going along smoothly. Quitting when you're emotional could mean it's a decision that you regret later and could be costly both financially and professionally.2. Will things improve? If you've got a boss who is the poster child for an ogre and makes your life miserable no matter what you do, then it…

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  • Career Woman

    Is that Work-Life Roadblock Really …

    We all face challenges and all our challenges have a dimension where we contribute to the problem. …

    Is that Work-Life Roadblock Really You?

    We all face challenges and all our challenges have a dimension where we contribute to the problem. This doesn’t make it “our fault” but it does give us a place to start in removing the roadblock! Don’t worry, there’s another one waiting… and the more we move the greater impact we have on the world and the happier we are. We enjoyed Kathryn’s insight into how this works interviewing a strong woman running a great program to help other women! – InPower Editors With my book underway, Work for A Rainy Day: Why A Woman’s Work is Never Done, I’m interviewing many people who know firsthand the trials and tribulations women experience with life’s “you never knows”.  Every year LouAnn Bloomer, the…

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  • Career Inspiration

    3 Quotes That Teach Us About Being …

    I am a reforming perfectionist, reforming being the key word. Change in our relationships with ourse…

    3 Quotes That Teach Us About Being Human

    I am a reforming perfectionist, reforming being the key word. Change in our relationships with ourselves is a process. It requires vulnerability, acceptance, and compassion. I’ve gone through phases of comparing myself to others and discounting my own good qualities. I’ve experienced the restlessness that comes with never feeling good enough. I have developed my own love/hate relationship with control and certainty. It has not always been easy to look at this part of myself. Any of us may have that place within that we would rather not see. We wish to hide it for fear of rejection and disconnection, or we may wish to deny it to avoid the discomfort that comes with acknowledgment. It is hard to see ourselves clearly…

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  • Career

    3 Ways To Spot A Terrible Boss In A…

    There's a lot to think about before you accept a job offer, but one thing we often forget to conside…

    3 Ways To Spot A Terrible Boss In A Job Interview

    There's a lot to think about before you accept a job offer, but one thing we often forget to consider is: Could I see myself working for this boss? "A boss can literally make or break your career," says Abhilash Mishra, a senior marketing associate at CresTech Software Systems, in a recent LinkedIn post. "A great boss can make you feel engaged and empowered at work, will keep you out of unnecessary office politics, and can identify and grow your strengths. But a bad boss can make the most impressive job on paper (and salary) quickly unbearable."  And while there are many ways to try to combat the effects of a bad boss, none of those tactics guarantee improvement, "and quite often,…

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  • Career

    Here's What Hiring Managers Re…

    Why are you leaving your current job? This may seem like an easy interview question. You probably ha…

    Here's What Hiring Managers Really Want To Know When They Ask Why You're Leaving Your Current Job

    Why are you leaving your current job? This may seem like an easy interview question. You probably have 100 reasons for wanting to pursue a new role — and can easily defend each one. But career expert Lynn Taylor says your response to this query can be an absolute deal breaker. "This question, or any variation of it, is extremely challenging because it naturally puts you on the defensive," says Taylor, author of "Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant: How to Manage Childish Boss Behavior and Thrive in Your Job." "It's one of the most difficult and critical queries you can possibly be asked during the interview process because it reveals so much about you." It's also a tricky question because a terse or canned response…

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  • Career Coach

    We Educate Nonsensically...And How …

    I've long felt that education could be so much better. In my PsychologyToday.com article today, I sh…

    We Educate Nonsensically...And How to Change Things

    I've long felt that education could be so much better. In my PsychologyToday.com article today, I show how. HERE is the link.

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  • Career

    How to choose between two jobs

    About a month ago I got a stack of catalogues from Restoration Hardware in the mail. My first thoug…

    How to choose between two jobs

    About a month ago I got a stack of catalogues from Restoration Hardware in the mail. My first thought was that I had purchased so much at Restoration Hardware in the past year that I am now one of their top customers. I thought about my friend Maria, who teaches people how to choose a color for anything in their home. She can make you feel like a genius and I’m pretty sure that means everything she buys from Restoration Hardware tax deductable. Before I was her friend and could call her all the time to ask about every little color question in my life (should my dark brown leather sofa be coco or espresso?) I hired Maria to do a color consultation. Well, I…

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  • Career

    A Startling Number Of Millennials A…

    A college degree used to be a near guarantee you'd be able to secure a good-paying job that made use…

    A Startling Number Of Millennials Are Overqualified For Their Jobs

    A college degree used to be a near guarantee you'd be able to secure a good-paying job that made use of your education. No longer. The after effects of the recession and mounting student loan debt, in addition to longer-term changes in the labor market, have forced many of today's graduates to take the first decent offer they receive — even if they're overqualified for the position. Some 35% of millennials with a bachelor's degree say their first full-time job didn't require a college degree, according to an exclusive survey of 548 millennials in the U.S. The survey also revealed that salary, along with career advancement, proved to be millennials' biggest job motivators. Unfortunately, the number of millennials working in jobs they're overqualified for…

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Second Menu

The Ultimate Guide to Planning Thanksgiving Dinner

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UltimateGuideThanksGiving

Starbucks red cups are out in full force. Offices are starting to get decked out in all their holiday lights and decorations. Halloween candy has been replaced with Christmas chocolate and candy canes. Yep, holiday season has officially begun!

If it’s snuck up on you a little bit, don’t worry. In preparation for Thanksgiving, I’ve created a handy hosting guide to help get you ready for the big day (and prevent you from running around like a turkey with its head cut off!).

Read on for great tips and resources for selecting the perfect bird, planning the most delicious of menus, and prepping in the days beforehand so you can blow your guests away with your culinary genius and epic party planning skills come Turkey Day.

 

Step 1: Pick Your Turkey

Order your turkey now (or at least a week in advance), by hopping online or calling your local store. You don’t want to be driving from grocery store to grocery store on Thanksgiving eve looking for a turkey when you realize you forgot to order one!

Not sure what type of turkey to order? Real Simple has a great guide that walks you through all the different options.

 

Step 2: Plan Your Menu

Now, for the fun part! Whether you have holiday favorites your clan eats every year or you want to experiment with new recipes, start to brainstorm what you’ll make. For most groups, I would serve 2-3 appetizers, 3-4 sides, 1-2 mains (including the turkey), and 2-3 desserts, so that there’s definitely something for everyone.

As you’re planning, be conscious of your kitchen space. If your oven is small, for example, then it’s going to be taken up by the turkey, so choose sides you can make on your stove, in your microwave, or ahead of time to be left out at room temperature.

To get you thinking, here are some menu suggestions.

 

Drinks

Niki pic 1 610x816 The Ultimate Guide to Planning Thanksgiving Dinner

 

Appetizers

Niki pic 2 610x409 The Ultimate Guide to Planning Thanksgiving Dinner

 

Sides

How Sweet Eats pic 610x405 The Ultimate Guide to Planning Thanksgiving Dinner

 

The Main Event

Thanksgiving Turkey 610x813 The Ultimate Guide to Planning Thanksgiving Dinner

 

Desserts

Niki pic The Ultimate Guide to Planning Thanksgiving Dinner

 

Step 3: Do the Prep Work

I know I’m always rattling on about how you should do as much of the prep work as possible ahead of time, but it’s true. You’ll be so much calmer on the big day if you know you only have to wrestle with your turkey and maybe a side or two.

Here’s my list of pre-T-Day prep.

  1. Plan for two separate grocery shopping excursions, one about a week beforehand so you can stock up on non-perishables or items with longer expiration dates, and then another 2-3 days before Thanksgiving for all your fresh items and any last-minute ingredients.
  2. From carving knives to a meat thermometer, make sure you have all the necessities to pull off Thanksgiving dinner.
  3. Check your plate and flatware situation—and call a friend if you need more.
  4. Double-check that your turkey roasting pan fits in the oven!
  5. Get your turkey ready—if you bought a frozen turkey, then take it out to thaw two to three days ahead of time. If you’ve decided to brine your turkey, then do this a day or two ahead of time.
  6. Make desserts one to two days ahead of time if possible. You can make your pies the day before and leave them at room temperature so as to not take up precious fridge space.
  7. See what sides or appetizers can be made a day or two before so you only need to reheat them the day of.
  8. Chop and prep your veggies the day before, make your appetizers, mash your potatoes and root vegetables, and do any other dish prep possible.
  9. Set out all serving platters you so you know you have enough for each of your dishes.
  10. Set the table. Here are some helpful articles to help with your table setting.

 

Step 4: Rock the Big Day

First things first, get that turkey prepped. It is the star of the show, after all! Preheat your oven, grab your recipe, and triple check the cooking time, and remove the turkey from your fridge at least an hour before roasting so it can come to room temperature.

Once your turkey is done cooking, let it rest while you get the rest of your sides ready to go. One thing I don’t worry about is the turkey being piping hot—I think it’s much better to have hot side dishes and gravy. I promise, your turkey will taste divine served at room temperature.

Once the turkey has come out of the oven, pop in your side dishes and get them nice and hot. Your microwave can become the hero of the hour if you run out of oven space—dishes like mashed potatoes or carrot mash can always be reheated for a couple of minutes in the microwave. And don’t forget your stove—I’ve been known to reheat mashed potatoes sitting in a large bowl over simmering water. Use all the space you have if possible!

If you need an hour-by-hour breakdown for Thanksgiving Day, Serious Eats has an awesome guide.

Once everything is ready, nominate a friend to rally the troops and get everyone seated. If you need to heat up any desserts, now is your time, as the oven is free as a bird (I know, I know). And be sure to pour yourself a big glass of bubbly—you’ve earned it!

Remember to put your turkey back in the fridge after about two hours go by—sometimes the best part of Thanksgiving is the leftovers!

 

Tell us! What are your favorite Thanksgiving recipes and tips?

 

Photos courtesy of Niki Lowry, How Sweet It Is, and Jessica Gurskis.
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5 “Power” Essentials Every Working Woman Needs to Know, by Barbara Pachter

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