As the leaves start to fall and the holiday season rapidly approaches, it’s time for some fall cleaning and organization. Finding spaces for all of the excess stuff lying around the house may be easier than you think! Not only is your stuff truly someone else’s treasure, but there are various storage hacks that will revamp and organize your spaces.
Use baskets for organization and storage. The options for using baskets as storage containers are limitless. Baskets can be used to store items from utensils to toys. Baskets can also be placed anywhere in the house from tops of counters to under cabinets. Find your next basket at a Goodwill store near you.
One simple trick to decluttering your home is the reverse clothes-hanger method. To help identify pieces of clothing that haven’t been touched in months, hang all of your clothes in the reverse direction. Once you wear an item, return it to the closet facing the correct direction. After 6 months, you’ll clearly be able to visualize which clothes need to be donated. Decluttering your closet will provide more hidden storage space for all of the other miscellaneous items in your house.
Thrift a piece of furniture. Storage spaces don’t need to be dull or outrageously expensive. Up-cycle a piece of Goodwill furniture to add flare to your living space, while providing large amounts of hidden storage.
Usher’s New Look alumna Kamera Cobb learned a thing or two from going through the four-year program. One of the many leadership tips she picked up while participating with the nonprofit? Networking, and how you present yourself, is key.
She emphasizes this with the current students of the program, with whom she advises. “It’s all about eye contact, a firm handshake, and speaking clearly,” she tells them.
These tips are also critical when interviewing for a job. First impressions are key, and even the littlest component of the initial meeting can contribute to the overall success of the interview. Beyond eye contact and confidence Cobb suggests, here are a few more ways to make your mark.
Don’t be late. But don’t be too early. The potential employer might have a very busy schedule, so don’t show up too ahead of your interview, making them scramble to be available.
Dress appropriately. This will likely be the first time you have met the employer face-to-face. Make sure you wear something that fits well, is ironed and clean, and is professional.
Practice your elevator speech. All interviews are different, but it’s usually a given that you’ll be asked to tell the interviewer a little bit about yourself, and why you are a good fit for the job. Be prepared with this answer.
Treat everyone with respect. You aren’t just trying to impress the interviewer. Make sure to be kind and appreciative to everyone from the secretary to the CEO.
Send a handwritten thank-you note. Emails and quick communications are the norm. Stand out by taking the time to write, and mail, an appreciation for the time of your interviewers.
For more job and leadership tips tune in to The Good Works Show on Saturdays at noon on News Radio 106.7 FM or catch the podcasts at https://soundcloud.com/thegoodworksshow.
Back-to-school season is in full swing! Whether you’re decorating your desk, dorm or college apartment, do it for less with thrifty finds from your local Goodwill. These items were spotted at the Goodwill stores in West End and Decatur. Household items like cups and plates are always in stock. Storage shelves, stereo equipment, books, binders and desk organizers also regularly make it to our sales floor. Start your treasure hunt today! You never know what you will find…
Leading an organization (or department, or project at work) can be hard, tiring work. But, according to Elisa Buckner, Board Member of Atlanta’s Summerhill Community Ministries, it’s important to stay strong and focused, and get through the task at hand, no matter what.
“Never give up,” she said. “There are definitely times when the funding might not be there, or challenges might come up and you feel overwhelmed, but don’t give up. When you are working with people and you are working with real, live beings, you want to keep encouraging, keep teaching, and keep giving positive alternatives to what may be a very dark situation that they are in.”
As a leader, how can you inspire others (and yourself) to keep going with the work gets tough?
Break it down. Sometimes work can be overwhelming. Take the project or work one step at a time, setting smaller, achievable goals and benchmarks. Focus on the smaller pieces that will eventually make up the whole puzzle.
Stop to smell the roses. Or, to take a walk. Or, to have dinner with a friend. Encourage staff to take time for themselves. If the work is hard and stressful, they will need some moments to recharge and refresh, and come back ready to try again.
Celebrate small wins. Motivate the team by recognizing accomplishments along the way.
Show them the bigger picture. The project at hand may cause some long hours and sleepless nights, but it’s all part of the larger mission. Accomplishing the task will set the organization up for success.
June 20 was summer solstice – and even though it’s been hot enough to feel like summer – the temperatures are now officially in sync with the season. As you fill summer’s long days with time in the sun, by the pool or relaxing at home, consider Goodwill as a source for great summertime finds. Here are some items spotted in our Hiram Store this week:
Feeling safe and secure are some of life’s most important necessities. To have the comfort of a warm home, protecting you from the elements and keeping you from the dangers and instability of living on the street. To go to work and to school without fear of threats or peril. To be prepared when life throws you an obstacle or calamitous event. HomeAid Atlanta is an Atlanta-based organization working to help individuals find this safety and security. Its goal is to offer this stability, and this comfort to those it serves. HomeAid Atlanta’s Executive Director Mandy Crater talks about HomeAid Atlanta’s fifteen year history of helping the homeless population find housing. “HomeAid Atlanta’s mission is to build new lives for homeless families and individuals through housing and community outreach,” Crater says. “We were founded in 2001 and we are the designated charity of the Atlanta Home Builders Association. We work with both the residential and commercial building industries, as well as the community to build and renovate housing for nonprofit organizations that work directly with Atlanta’s homeless. To date, HomeAid Atlanta has completed 53 housing remodels.” HomeAid Atlanta helps homeless individuals and families move into more stable housing. “There are approximately 9,000 homeless people on any given night in metro-Atlanta,” Crater says. “Forty percent are women and children, and twenty-one percent are veterans.”
Crater mentions the “invisible homeless:” those sleeping in their cars, extended-stay hotels, and crashing for multiple nights on the couches of friends. This group often includes those displaced after a sudden and unexpected life event. HomeAid Atlanta serves victims of domestic violence, teen mothers, abused or abandoned children, and veterans. “We help somebody that needs some time to get back on their feet,” Crater says. The organization does this by building both individual and multi-unit homes in coordination with local builders and trade workers. Individuals who live in the homes are expected to take classes on budgeting and financial literacy, parenting, and work readiness.
“One of their graduates is a homeowner now,” Crater says. “After being at the Phoenix Pass location for two years, and working two jobs, she was able to apply and qualify for a Habitat for Humanity home. In two years, she went from being on the street to being a homeowner. It’s life-changing.” One of HomeAid’s biggest initiatives is their Essentials Drive, in which they collect necessary items for families and babies. During the drive they accept diapers, wipes, formula, and baby food. Crater says this is a great way for those who do not renovate or build homes to give back.
HomeAid always does the drive right before Mother’s Day, this year from April 25 to May 3, collecting items that get used up and are costly to replace. “Sometimes they are choosing between food and changing their baby’s diaper,” Crater says. In addition to accepting individual donations, HomeAid works with 30 different organizations doing drives throughout the city. These sites and organizations can be found at www.homeaidatlanta.org.
“We are out their building housing every day,” Crater says. “We serve as a bridge, connecting local builders, trades, and suppliers with local nonprofit service providers, providing a unique and meaningful way for members of the building industry to give back. We try to save 50 percent of the construction costs- through donations from national partners, from local partners, from time, talent, and material.”
This cost savings goes back into the programs and services helping the homeless individuals find more stable housing. For individuals and builders alike looking to connect with HomeAid Atlanta, they can visit the website at www.homeaidatlanta.org or call 678-775-1401.
Home to some of our most tenured employees, our Northeast Plaza store in Atlanta celebrated a grand re-opening on Thursday, April 14. Originally opened in April 2005, the store serves an average of 60 donors and 500 shoppers daily, and because it sees high foot traffic the store was due for a face-lift. As a part of the celebration there will be drawings at the store for Goodwill gift certificates all weekend long. Even with its new look the store will contain the same great treasures and great deals shoppers have enjoyed for the last 11 years. Here is a look at some of the items spotted at its grand re-opening:
“Résumés. It’s really important to make sure your résumé is up-to-date and has the current information – including your valid email address – so that employers are able to contact you in the event they are interested in looking at you for potential employment. So please, please, please make sure that your résumés are up-to-date.”
– Heather Morrison, lead facilitator at Goodwill of North Georgia’s East Athens career center
For more job tips like Heather’s, tune in weekly to The Good Works Show or check out the podcasts at https://soundcloud.com/thegoodworksshow/northern-star-cobb-works-032616.