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Toys "R" Us Stores in UK to Hold Quiet Hour for Shoppers With Autism

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Back in May, the Manchester branch of Asda, one of Britian’s largest supermarket chains, introduced an early morning “quiet hour” of shopping for customers with autism. At 8 a.m., the store turned off its music, electronics displays, and escalators in order to create a more peaceful shopping environment for customers who are prone to over-stimulation or anxiety. The program was an immediate success, with other branches quickly following suit. Now, Toys “R” Us is endeavoring to make the most wonderful time of the year a comfortable experience for all shoppers. According to The Telegraph, several UK outposts of the behemoth toy store chain will hold a “quiet hour” of holiday shopping on the morning of Sunday, November 6.

In addition to making the experience music- and announcement-free, the stores will also dim their lights and reduce the amount of fluorescent lighting being aimed at patrons. According to the Autism Society, approximately 1 percent of the world’s population lives with an autism spectrum disorder; since 2000, the number of children affected by it has increased by nearly 120 percent. In the U.S. alone, more than 3.5 million people are afflicted, which makes gaining a deeper understanding of what it’s like to live with the disorder so important.

“We’re delighted that Toys ‘R’ Us is again showing the way by hosting an autism-friendly shopping event in every Toys ‘R’ Us store in the lead up to Christmas,” said Daniel Cadey, autism access manager for the UK’s National Autistic Society. “Simple changes like this can make a huge difference to the 700,000 autistic people in the UK and to their families, and we hope that many more major retailers will follow the great example set by Toys ‘R’ Us.”

[h/t: The Telegraph]

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Live Smarter
The Only Way to Answer ‘What Is Your Greatest Weakness?’ In a Job Interview
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Thanks in part to the influence of Silicon Valley and its focus on the psychological probing of job applicants, interview questions have been steadily getting more and more abstract. As part of the interview process, today's job seekers might be asked to describe a vending machine to someone who’s never seen one before, or plan a fantasy date with a famous historical figure.

Even if the company you’re approaching isn’t fully on board with prodding your brain, at some point you may still come up against one of the most common queries applicants face: "What is your greatest weakness?"

"Some 'experts' will tell you to try and turn a strength into a 'weakness,' to make yourself look good," writes Inc. contributor Justin Bariso. "That advice is garbage."

"Think about it," Bariso continues. "Interviewers are asking the same question to countless candidates. Just try and guess how many times they hear the answers 'being a perfectionist' or 'working too much.' (Hint: way too often.)"

While responding that you work too hard might seem like a reliable method of moving the conversation along, there’s a better way. And it involves being sincere.

"The fact is, it's not easy to identify one's own weaknesses," Bariso writes. "Doing so takes intense self-reflection, critical thinking, and the ability to accept negative feedback—qualities that have gone severely missing in a world that promotes instant gratification and demands quick (often thoughtless) replies to serious issues."

Bariso believes the question is an effective way to reveal an applicant’s self-awareness, which is why companies often use it in their vetting process. By being self-aware, people (and employees) can correct behavior that might be affecting job performance. So the key is to give this question some actual thought before it’s ever posed to you.

What is your actual greatest weakness? It could be that, in a desire to please everyone, you wind up making decisions based on the urge to avoid disappointing others. That’s a weakness that sounds authentic.

Pondering the question also has another benefit: It prompts you to think of areas in your life that could use some course-correcting. Even if you don’t land that job—or even if the question is never posed to you—you’ve still made time for self-reflection. The result could mean a more confident and capable presence for that next interview.

[h/t Inc.]

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Words
This Is the Most Commonly Misspelled Word on Job Resumes
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by Reader's Digest Editors

Your resume is your first chance to make a good impression with hiring managers. One misspelled word might not seem like a huge deal, but it can mean the difference between looking competent and appearing lazy. A 2014 Accountemps survey of 300 senior managers found that 63 percent of employers would reject a job candidate who had just one or two typos on their resume.

Most misspellings on resumes slip through the cracks because spellcheck doesn’t catch them. The most common misspelling on resumes is a shockingly simple word—or so you’d think.

Career coach and resume writer Jared Redick of Resume Studio in San Francisco tells Business Insider that the most common misspelling he sees by far is confusing “lead” with “led.” If you’re talking about how you run meetings at your current job, the correct spelling is “lead,” which is in the present tense. If the bullet point is from a former position, use lead’s past tense: led. Yes, “lead” as in the metal can also be pronounced “led,” but most people have no need to discuss chemical elements on their job resumes.

 
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Other spelling mistakes Redick has seen pop up over and over again on resumes is spelling “definitely” as “definately” (which spellcheck thankfully should catch) and adding an e in “judgment” (“judgement” is the British spelling, but “judgment” is preferred in American English).

To avoid the cringe factor of noticing little typos after sending out your application—especially if your misspelling actually is a real word that spellcheck recognizes—always proofread your resume before submitting. Slowly reading it out loud will take just a few minutes, but it could mean the difference between an interview and a rejection.

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