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How to Make a Snow Day Productive

2019 has just begun, and record low temperatures accompanied by weather storms have already made their way around the country. For locals of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, you are likely working to perfect your snow day regime to maximize productivity and minimize stress for the winter days ahead - When the weather outside is frightful, here are three strategies to making your time at home delightful!

Preparation is Key
When a snowstorm is on the horizon, be sure to bring home essential items from the office you will need in order to be successful, such as your laptop, charger and important documents. There is nothing more defeating than waking up to realize you left all of your necessities on your desk - Not to mention, your boss may not be too impressed by this reality.

Additionally, remember to communicate your circumstances to your team. If you are unable to drive in the conditions or your power has gone out due to the storm, let your colleagues know, so they are able to plan and prioritize accordingly.

Early Bird Gets the Worm
It is so easy to press the snooze button significantly more times when working from home versus getting ready for the office. When a snow day hits, try to keep the normalcy in your schedule to properly structure your day. Getting out of bed and sticking to your regular routine will set a positive tone for your morning - And, the good news? You can sip your early cup of joe on the couch instead of performing your daily balancing act in the car!

Postpone Team Meetings
While it is important to adhere to scheduled meetings, it may be beneficial to reschedule these in person powwows to a time when everyone is back in the office. Not only does this give you time back in your day, it also minimizes distractions and guarantees more engagement from your colleagues.

How to Make a Snow Day Productive

Pete Sits Down with Jacksonville SNI Financial Team

Pete Langlois recently sat down with part of Jacksonville’s SNI Financial team to discuss their backgrounds and what led them to SNI, what it’s like being a recruiter, giving back to the community, and how they view themselves as a resource to clients and candidates.

This week’s guests on Pete the Job Guy included Virginie Mascia, Patricia Wisniewski and Ryan Burrill who have all been with SNI Companies for a varying amount of time. Virginie has been in this space the longest and has worked in the accounting and finance field for over the last decade. She has her MBA in Management from Jacksonville University and is a seasoned recruiter whose extensive knowledge in the field makes her a trusted resource for clients and candidates alike. Patricia has a background in education and has her Master’s Degree in English. She has been with SNI for a couple of years and brings her experience as a teacher into her current role by offering coaching and guidance to her candidates. Ryan is the newest member of the team and worked as an EMT while in college and after graduation found himself in the non-profit world for the last several years. Wanting to continue making a difference in people’s lives, he turned to recruiting and loves how his newfound career personally impacts other’s lives.

Being a Recruiter
With the unemployment rate in Jacksonville hovering around 1.8% for accounting and finance professionals, it’s a candidate’s market with a strong workforce. The team works to get to the core of what people are looking for and what their motivators are. Making a successful job placement is like being a matchmaker and they take their job seriously with finding the perfect match for their clients and candidates.

Giving Back to the Community
The team is passionate about volunteering and has worked with various non-profit organizations such as the Humane Society and will be offering their time to the Food Pantry in the near future. In addition, they are always running drives in the office and raising money for various causes. Giving back to their community is a key cornerstone of the office and brings the team closer together when they are working together for a greater cause.

Working at SNI and Helping Our Clients and Candidates
Working at SNI is fast paced and there are always lots of moving parts. The team works together and pushes each other to do their best all while having fun. They bring this enthusiasm to their clients and candidates and view their relationships with them as partners and a resource in the market. For their clients they are always asking how they can help and what hiring needs they have. For their candidates, it’s getting to the root of what they are looking for and helping them find their ideal roles. Doing a successful placement is a win-win for all parties and they take the time to develop strong relationships.

If you’d like to listen to the full podcast you can do so on or on iTunes by simply searching Pete the Job Guy for this and all of Pete’s other episodes.

Pete Sits Down with Jacksonville SNI Financial Team

The Art of Salary Negotiation

For many people, salary negotiations can be uncomfortable and awkward, however there may come a time when the work you are doing is not reflected in your compensation or when you are considering an opportunity that requires the art of negotiating compensation. If you’re in this situation, it’s important to build a case for your desired outcome. Here are some tips to prepare for your meeting so you can go in confident, self-assured and empowered.

Get your facts straight
Asking for something because you think you deserve it is not a strong argument. When building a case it’s important to gather evidence and facts that support the argument. You need to do your research and gain an understanding of how the market values your role and responsibilities. There are all kinds of resources available to assist with this., CareerBuilder and Salary Guides generated by agencies specializing in your area of expertise can all be solid resources. Take in to account the hours you’re working as well as perks you may be getting that others in similar positions don’t get. For instance, flexibility to work from home, a car allowance, an abundance of PTO, stellar long term incentives, or 100% paid health insurance. Companies factor many things in to the overall compensation so be sure you factor those things as well. Be prepared for some push back and have some flexibility. Instead of having a specific number, present a range of compensation in the market that reflects some companies having a more aggressive bonus structure, LTI’s or the other things I mentioned. That way if your company doesn’t offer those things you can negotiate toward the top of the range and if they do you can feel satisfied being toward the lower end.

What happens if you hear “no”
First, don’t take the rejection personally and don’t complain. Hopefully, if you’ve laid out a well thought through presentation to justify your request they will do the same if that request is declined. Maybe they will agree to doing other things to offset your request. Regardless, if there is anything discussed as an alternate option get it in writing. If the request is denied for reasons you don’t agree with or simply “because they don’t think it’s necessary” then ask for guidance on what you should or can do to best position yourself for a raise in the near future. Request a timeline so proper expectations are set and then be sure that too is confirmed in writing via email or something more formal.

What happens if you get a “yes”
Convey your appreciation for the consideration you’ve been given and reiterate your commitment and enthusiasm about your role within the company. Again, be sure the details are solidified with an offer letter or a follow up email stating what was specifically agreed to. Now is the time to prove to your manager that they made the right decision and show that you are worth investing in.

Negotiating a better salary can be tough but hopefully these tactics will make it easier to help you get the pay you feel you deserve. You want to strike the right balance of confidence without coming off as arrogant or greedy. My final advice is to view salary negotiations as a win-win. You will be starting a new chapter in your career with a higher compensation and your employer gets a more dedicated and empowered employee.

The Art of Salary Negotiation