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4 tips for negotiating your salary

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Though it can be nerve-racking, negotiating your salary is a normal part of the hiring process. Here are four tips for staying cool, calm, and collected during your next salary negotiation.

1. Know your worth
The first thing you need to do is be confident in what you have to offer the company. Don’t undervalue your knowledge, skills, education, and experience.

2. Research the market
To get the salary you deserve, you should have a general idea of the going rate for your position or a similar role within your industry and in your local area. In fact, many job search websites provide information on the average market value for a variety of jobs.

3. Be flexible
Stay flexible and temper your expectations when negotiating your salary. For example, try asking for slightly more than what you expect. This gives you room to work with, making you more likely to get a salary you’re comfortable with if the employer comes back with a lower number.

4. Know when to say “no”
If the employer won’t budge on their initial salary offer, then it might be in your best interests to decline it. This is especially true if you’re considering other offers or interviewing at several companies.

When negotiating your salary, keep in mind some of the other perks that come with the job such as extra vacation days, flexible hours, or a work-from-home schedule.

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What you need to become a blade sharpener

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Have you ever wondered if becoming a knife and blade sharpener is right for you? If so, here’s what it takes.

Dexterity
Blade sharpeners must handle various types of saws, including band saws, circular saws, and more. They must also operate large equipment such as magnetic profiles and stellite machines. These tools must be carefully handled to ensure optimal results and prevent accidents.

Excellent vision
Blade sharpeners must have excellent vision to ensure they can perform their job with as much precision as possible. It’s also important that they be able to detect small imperfections such as cracks and broken teeth on saws and knives to provide the best quality cut.

Mechanical ability
Blade sharpeners repair and perform maintenance on all the tools and equipment they use. They must also set up, adjust and align the saws and various attachments on their machinery. Consequently, it’s important for this professional to stay up to date on the latest sharpening equipment used in the industry.

Do you think you have what it takes to become a knife and blade sharpener? If so, keep an eye out for training opportunities in your area.

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How to address being fired in a job interview

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Were you recently fired? Are you worried it’ll affect your ability to land a good job? If you have an upcoming interview, here are three tips to ensure you come out on top.

1. Tell the truth
Be honest. Lying about the situation could potentially backfire. Be as objective as possible when explaining yourself so you don’t come across as someone who thinks they’re a victim. No matter what the circumstances were, it’s important to be specific about why you were fired. A vague answer could lead recruiters and managers to believe you’re trying to hide something.

2. Prepare your answer
Expect to be asked about why you were fired in your interview. Prepare your answer in advance to prevent yourself from saying something you might regret. Avoid speaking badly about your former employer and don’t feel like you have to explain the situation in great detail.

3. Emphasize what you’ve learned
Explain that being fired was a learning experience. Acknowledge your mistakes, don’t make excuses, and emphasize how you’ve improved your knowledge and skills. This will make you a more attractive candidate to potential employers.

If you need assistance preparing for an interview or want further career tips, look for an employment organization in your area that can help.

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4 tips for working from home with kids

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Juggling working from home with parenting young children comes with many challenges. Here are four tips to help you balance your work and personal life while remaining as productive as possible.

1. Adjust your work schedule
You may need to switch up your work schedule to accommodate taking care of your kids. If this is the case, communicate your needs to your boss and come prepared with a clear plan. Many employers are understanding and more than willing to work something out.

2. Establish a routine
Kids like knowing what lies ahead. Write out a daily schedule and pin it to the wall or refrigerator so they can refer to it and know what to expect through¬out the day. This will help keep them on track, especially if they’re attending virtual classes.

3. Set specific working hours
Sit down with your kids and set boundaries for the workday. For example, explain that when the door to your office is closed, they have to knock before they come in. This will help minimize interruptions and ensure you get your work done.

4. Take breaks
It’s important to take regular breaks throughout the day, especially when working from home with kids. In fact, it can boost your productivity and help prevent burnout. For example, you could work for 30 or 50 minutes and then take a 10-minute break to spend time with your kids.

Lastly, be kind to yourself and know that everything doesn’t always go as planned, and that’s all right.

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5 business email etiquette tips

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As remote work becomes increasingly popular, employees are sending out more digital messages than ever. Here are five tips to help you craft a perfectly polished business email.

1. Include a subject line. Don’t leave the subject line blank. Include a clear and concise header that accurately reflects the content of your email.

2. Use a professional greeting. Avoid using laid-back salutations such as “Hi folks” or “Hey guys.” Instead, start your email with phrases such as “Good morning,” “Good afternoon,” “Good evening” or simply “Hello.”

3. Keep the message brief. Use short paragraphs and formatting such as bullet points to make your emails easy to skim. In addition, instead of sending a long email, consider arranging a phone or video call to get your message across.

4. Proofread the message. Take the time to re-read and spell-check your emails to ensure they make sense and have the right tone before you press send.

5. Reply to all emails promptly. Try to reply to all emails within 24 hours, even if it’s just to acknowledge that you received the message.

Lastly, emails can easily be misinterpreted without context. Consequently, be careful about making jokes or using sarcasm as you don’t want to confuse or offend the recipient.

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3 questions to ask in an interview

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Interviews aren’t only a chance for potential employers to get to know you better, they’re also an opportunity to determine if the job is a good fit for you. Here are three insightful questions to ask the hiring manager during your next interview.

1. What does a typical day look like in this position?
This is a great question to ask in an interview as it will help you determine what you’re going to be doing and what’s expected of you. It can also help define which skills are required for the job.

2. Does this position offer opportunities for professional development?
This question can help you determine if there are any opportunities for growth within the company. Additionally, it indicates to the hiring manager that you’re serious about your career and interested in long-term employment.

3. Where do you think the company is headed in the next five years?
Asking this question can help you gain insight into the company’s general plans for the future and determine if there’s room to grow. It can also give you a sense of how stable the job might be in the coming years.

Asking a few questions at the end of an interview is a simple way to show your enthusiasm about the job and gather the facts you need to make an informed decision.

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3 jobs for people who love to read

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If you want to turn your passion for reading into a profession, here are three interesting career options you may want to consider:

1. Librarian
This is an obvious choice for anyone who loves to read. Librarians must have excellent research and communication skills, as well as a passion for helping others. If you’re eager to share your literary knowledge with like-minded people, this may be the job for you.

2. Editor
Editors must have impeccable writing and grammar skills to create error-free content in a variety of fields. Though many editors work on a freelance basis, there are also full-time editing jobs available at local newspapers and publishing houses. If you have a keen eye for detail and enjoy creating polished pieces of writing, becoming an editor may be a good career choice.

3. Book scout
Book scouts are usually hired by publishers, agents, or film studios to scour books, manuscripts, and other written material worth publishing in a new market. In essence, their job is to find the next big thing so fo¬reign publishers can pick up the rights. If the thought of reading a wide variety of content excites you, becoming a book scout could be a career worth pursuing.

There are plenty of other career options out there for people who love literacy and words, including becoming a teacher, blogger, book reviewer, and more.

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Thank You to our Local Business Participants:

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Apple Dumpling Learning Center

Apple House

Auto Care Clinic

Blue Ridge Arts Council

Blue Ridge Education

BNI Shenandoah Valley

C&C's Ice Cream Shop

Code Ninjas Front Royal

Cool Techs Heating and Air

Down Home Comfort Bakery

Downtown Market

Dusty's Country Store

Edward Jones-Bret Hrbek

Family Preservation Services

Front Royal Women's Resource Center

Front Royal-Warren County Chamber of Commerce

Gourmet Delights Gifts & Framing

Green to Ground Electrical

Groups Recover Together

I Want Candy

I'm Just Me Movement

Jen Avery, REALTOR & Jenspiration, LLC

Main Street Travel

Makeover Marketing Systems

Marlow Automotive Group

Mary Carnahan Graphic Design

Mountain Trails

National Media Services

Ole Timers Antiques

Phoenix Project

Reaching Out Now

Royal Blends Nutrition

Royal Examiner

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Oak Computers

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Spice

Salvation Army

SaVida Health

Skyline Insurance

St. Luke Community Clinic

Studio Verde

The Studio-A Place for Learning

The Valley Today - The River 95.3

The Vine and Leaf

Warren Charge (Bennett's Chapel, Limeton, Asbury)

Warren County Department of Social Services

Warrior Psychotherapy Services, PLLC

What Matters & Beth Medved Waller, Inc Real Estate

White Picket Fence

Woodward House on Manor Grade

King Cartoons

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Upcoming Events

Jan
28
Fri
12:30 pm Free REVIVE! Opioid Overdose and... @ ONLINE
Free REVIVE! Opioid Overdose and... @ ONLINE
Jan 28 @ 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm
Free REVIVE! Opioid Overdose and Naloxone Education @ ONLINE
Northwestern Prevention Collaborative, in conjunction with Northwestern Community Services Board, will offer a free, virtual REVIVE! Training on January 28th from 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm. The one-hour online class provides an overview of how[...]
Jan
31
Mon
3:00 pm Virtual Financial Services Workshop @ ONLINE
Virtual Financial Services Workshop @ ONLINE
Jan 31 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Virtual Financial Services Workshop @ ONLINE
People Incorporated is cohosting a virtual financial services workshop for small business owners to learn about business loans, technical assistance, training, and other services provided by the agency. The workshop is scheduled for Monday, Jan.[...]
Feb
2
Wed
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Feb 2 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Feb
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all-day First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Feb 4 all-day
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Come celebrate First Friday! Downtown businesses will be open late, until 8 p.m., on the first Friday and Saturday of each month.
Feb
5
Sat
all-day First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Feb 5 all-day
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Come celebrate First Friday! Downtown businesses will be open late, until 8 p.m., on the first Friday and Saturday of each month.
9:00 am Women’s Wellness Workshop @ ONLINE
Women’s Wellness Workshop @ ONLINE
Feb 5 @ 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Women's Wellness Workshop @ ONLINE
Women’s Wellness Workshop – Virtual via Zoom Webinar – Key Note Speaker Dr. Neema. Registrations will begin January 5: frontroyalwomenswellness.com
4:30 pm Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
Feb 5 @ 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area: Discover our International Dark-Sky Park! Our evenings begin with a half-hour children’s “Junior Astronomer” program, followed by a discussion about the importance of dark skies and light conservation. Then join NASA Jet Propulsion[...]
Feb
9
Wed
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Feb 9 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Feb
12
Sat
10:00 am Winter Tree Identification Workshop @ Sky Meadows State Park
Winter Tree Identification Workshop @ Sky Meadows State Park
Feb 12 @ 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Winter Tree Identification Workshop @ Sky Meadows State Park
Winter Tree Identification Workshop: Botany and Bloom Series Historic Area Even after the chilly breezes of autumn have stripped them of their leaves, trees provide clues to their identification by way of their bark, leaf[...]