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Spike Industries Needs Bike Salesmen

Do you have a bike with a cargo box attached? Spike Industries is currently employing bikers to join their sales force for their distribution region in and around Kingston.



Company Profile:  Spike Industries

Spike Industries is considered one of the leading manufacturers in the domestic beverages industry in Jamaica. The Jamaican-owned company was established in the early 1980’s and since has been producing fruit juices and other healthy beverages for domestic consumption. With one of the largest state-of-the-art beverage manufacturing plants in the country and a sizable fleet of trucks, Spike Industries’s known brand and distribution footprint has enabled the company to maintain a dominant position in the wholesale and retail distribution market. It continues to improve its product offerings based on local consumer demands and initial trends.

Business Name: Spike Industries Ltd.

Company Size: Medium

Business Address:  99 Windward Road, Kingston

Phone: 930-7414 / 938-3816

Total Number of  Employees: 50


How Many Vacancies Exist?

Unlimited, although I’m sure there will be a cut-off point. When asked, a contact at the company stated there was no specific number of bikers needed, so it’s pretty much open if you want to apply for the opportunity.

Required Education/Qualification: None stated. All you need is a working bike which has a cargo box attached to the back.

Where are these jobs?

Candidates will serve the company’s Kingston operations mostly, however, if it is convenient for you to travel from other parishes, the Spike contact said, you may apply. The company also has an operation in Sav-la-mar but the company spokesperson said she was uncertain whether there was a need in that area.

Best Advice: Apply even if you are outside the immediate region. If not needed for Kingston routes, your application would still be placed on file for consideration when rural sales work opportunities turn up.

I’m Interested. How Do I Apply? 

Use any of these three options to submit an application or express your interest.

Phone:930-7414 / 938-3816

Email: Send resumes to

Hand Deliver/Mail: Spike Industries Limited, 99 Windward Road, Kingston 2.





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Sweetie Confectionery Is Hiring 10 Happy Workers (NVQJ Machine Operator Opportunities Included)


Are you a happy person? Would you work in a candy factory? If so, Jamaican candy manufacturer and distributor, Sweetie Confectionery needs you.

The fruit candy brand is hiring 10 happy workers. ‘Cause if you’re miserable, the candy may taste bad,’ a headline on the job pages of the company’s website explains cheekily.

Two job opportunities for certified National Vocation Qualification of Jamaica (NVQJ) factory staff are in the lot, so read on.

About Sweetie Confectionery

Sweetie Confectionery is a candy manufacturing start-up owned by TV weather woman and radio host Patria-Kaye Aarons. In 2015, the start-up launched its Caribbean-flavoured hard candy product line to include jujus, toffees and lollipops and has grown quickly with the opening of export markets in the Caribbean and United Staes.

The company lately introduced a sour line of candies and has embarked on an expansion programme which its CEO says will mean Sweetie Confectionery having its own factory space. The company has been using a coworking space arrangement with Jamaican mints candy manufacturer Miel.

The new Sweetie Confectionery factory space which will be launched in a few weeks, Ms Aarons noted, will accommodate the new hires that the company is now seeking. This expansion will also see island-wide distribution of the Sweetie candy products to wholesalers.


The positions that are now open for application are

1. Factory Supervisor

Job Type: Full Time

Required Education/Certification: NVQJ certification in Machine Operation, or equivalent

Job OverviewYou ensure that orders are filled and delivered on time.You will oversee our daily production operations and ensure that production remains an efficient process; meeting international health and safety regulations. You will be responsible for monitoring employees’ performances, organizing workflows and arranging employee shifts and schedules.

Qualifications: To be considered for this job, you’re required to have

  • problem-solving skills and a results-driven attitude
  • experience as a Factory Supervisor before or work in a similar role.
  • experience in the Food Industry would be a distinct advantage.
  • experience in using various types of manufacturing machinery and tools
  • organisational and leadership abilities
  • communication and interpersonal skills

2. Marketing Executive

Job Type: Full Time

Required Education/Certification: Diploma in Marketing

Job Overview: You ensure that the company achieves its Sales targets.
You will undertake Sales and Promotional activities to grow the Sweetie brand. You will organize campaigns and activities in the trade to ensure the company’s Distributors and Retailers are well supported. You will have a passion for getting products into the hands of Sweetie Confectionary’s customers at home and abroad.

Qualifications: The Marketing Executive is also required  to be “full of personality.” You will need to have

  • at least two-year Marketing and Sales experience.

You are expected to demonstrate these competencies to get the job:

  • Exceptional communication skills and attention to details
  • Understand market research techniques and data analysis
  • Be Familiar with social media and web analytics

Visit the Caribbean Sweetie website to see a full job description.

3. Production Team Member

Job Type: Full-Time

Required Education/Certification:

  • NVQJ certification in Machine Operation, or equivalent. (No Levels are stated)
  • 3 CXC subjects including Mathematics and English.
  • Food Handlers Permit

Job Overview: You ensure the brand’s candies look and taste the same way every time. You will be reliable and have a keen eye for detail, taking pride in ensuring that only the best products go through our factory doors. You will set up, maintain and execute the entire production process. Being a team player is essential since all tasks will require close collaboration with co-workers.

Qualifications: Sweetie’s ideal Production Team Member will meet the following criteria:

  • 2 years’ experience as a machine operator or Factory Production experience
  • Working knowledge of diverse high-speed machinery and measurement
  • Understanding of production procedures
  • Adherence to health and safety regulations
  • Attention to detail
  • High level of confidentiality
  • Teamwork and communication skills

Get the full job description here.

4. Driver


Job Type: Full-time

Required Education: 3 CXC subjects including Mathematics and English

Job Overview: You transport staff and products safely.

You must be a responsible driver who will represent our company well; pleasant and professional. The role will include daily transportation of staff, delivery of goods and general bearer duties.

Qualifications: You’ll have responsibility for the company’s valuable assets so you’ll need to have

  • a good driving record with no traffic violations
  • proven working experience as a driver (minimum 5 years)
  • a valid professional driver’s license
  • excellent organizational and time management skills

Learn more about this job.

What You Should Know to Increase Interview Success.

As mentioned before, happiness seems one of the non-negotiable criteria that successful candidates should possess to work at Sweetie Confectionery. So much that you should be oozing it, company CEO, Patria Kay Aarons says. So let your naturally happy and outgoing countenance and personality shine through at the interview.

Talk about interviews, this will not be your usual face to face two or three person interview where you answer a series of common questions posed by the interviewer facing you. Expect something a little different, says Ms. Aarons.

While your resume must make you look good on paper, you will have to demonstrate a number of employability skills to show you are a good fit for the company. Candidates will be interviewed in groups. You will answer some questions, but for the majority of the interview session, you should expect to participate in work-related improvisation type challenges which will evaluate your ability to function in a team, handle challenges and think critically.

Are you game for some Taboo?

If you’re applying for the Marketing executive job, expect to put your best game face on as your assessment will involve playing a game of Taboo, a classic card game that involves guessing. Never played before? Get familiar with the rules in this tutorial from wikiHow.

The boss will be watching not so much your aptitude for the game but your play attitudes. Do you exhibit fearlessness?

Can you use language, anticipate and answer questions skillfully?

Can you think critically?

Do you demonstrate grace under pressure? Are you a  good sportsman when you lose?

Are you a  good sportsman when you lose?

If you wrote a great résumé, played smart, demonstrated that you are a happiness engineer, have excellent group relations skills, communicated adeptly, proved that the skills outlined on your résumé are actual competencies, and prove throughout the exercise that you would fit well into the happy company culture at Sweetie Confectionery, you could walk away with the job.

Application deadline: February 17, 2017.

Send your application to

Learn about the company at

On Tuesday, the CEO revealed that the company has received nearly 1000 expressions of interest in the 10 jobs. This number will be whittled down to a short-list from which invitations for the interview will be sent.

 Impress with your Resume Documents

This means you have to make a good impression with your application documents. To help you prepare top notch cover letters and resumes, here are four resume blunders of note that the Sweetie Confectionery boss and other hiring managers aren’t amused by, and a fix for each.

BLUNDER #1. Applicant uses desperation by begging for a job or resorting to Christianese language. Desperate email headlines such as this one: “Lawd Jesus, please give me a job” may be outlandish enough to get her to open your email and view your application but if you do not possess the required skills, you’ll need much more than a will and a prayer to prevent your application from missing the disposal bin.

  • FIX: Keep the tone and language of your application appropriately formal and professional to match the context in which you are writing. You are not writing to a buddy, so don’t use casual language. Also, always specify the job post you are applying for.

BLUNDER #2.  Resume list hobbies that suggest time wasting activities. Modern resumes rarely list hobbies. If you are inclined to do so, however, try not to list “internet surfing” as a hobby. This may send the hiring manager the wrong impression about how you may choose to spend your time at work.

  • FIX: Leave ‘internet surfing’ off. If you must, list only hobbies that are applicable to the work context. Using heading such as INTERESTS or ADDITIONAL STRENGTHS may be the better ways to add other knowledge and strengths to your resume.

BLUNDER #3. RESUME only lists past jobs and dates worked. Or, past work experience has no relevance to the job being applied for.

  • FIX: Bosses don’t really care where you have worked. what they are interested in is how you can bring the best achievements from those experiences to their business to help them succeed. Therefore, only select related past jobs and your best achievements in the job role and elaborate on it to show that you are experienced, results-oriented and can deliver. As seen in the examples below, some people separate achievements from experience. Other persons combine the information under the EXPERIENCE heading.

BONUS TIP: To help you recall those targets you accomplished daily, weekly, monthly and/or quarterly, ask someone to interview you about your past jobs.

Use these questions:

  • What did you do daily at Company X?
  • What targets or quotas were you expect to achieve on a daily, weekly, monthly or quarterly basis?
  • Can you recall a particular time when you met or surpassed that target?
  • Explain in numbers or quantity, what the team’s or your personal work target, goal or quota was.
    • Example: My weekly target was to label and pack 3400 candies. 

Now, go further and quantify the significant achievement .

  • I increased this figure by 20% weekly for 3 consecutive quarters.

The thing to do is focus on the results of your work and you should be able to recall ideas to add to your resume.

Review these phrasing examples from an actual Factory Supervisor resume. Note the customised headings.


  • Initiated and implemented an extensive internal auditing process that enhanced the productivity by 20%
  •  Revised the company policy regarding Fab operations resulting in minimization of manufacturing faults
  • Received the best Manager Award in May 2011
  •  Provided extensive training to seven new inductees regarding Fab specifications


  • Factory Supervisor
    Burlington Coat Factory, Boynton Beach, FL | October 2011 – Present• Oversee the functioning and operation of open plant facility and related equipment
    • Coordinate with engineering and design team for productivity enhancement
    • Ensure timely stocking of material
    • Drive sales via maintenance of fruitful potential customer relations

    Factory Manager
    NIKE, Boynton Beach, FL | March 2010 – September 2011

    • Supervised and monitored the factory automation service cell
    • Performed cashier duties, processed transactions while receiving and delivering scheduled shipments
    • Coordinated with the factory staff and prepared notes for worker’s shift timings

  • BLUNDER #4: REFERENCES: To include or not include. Some resume experts feel it is not necessary to put your references on your resume. They argue that it is redundant as the hiring manager will most likely ask for these when they need them.

    I agree. I usually put a statement saying “Provided upon request.” But even that is seen as redundant as well by many modern resume writing coaches. The blunder many applicants need to be cautious about though is randomly stating referrers names and not assuming that any named references you add to your resume will be checked. Hiring managers recall on occasion when the person giving the reference did not give positive recommendations of the individual who listed the person as a reference.

    FIX: Don’t use or list references on your resume that won’t give a worthy recommendation of your past work. to avoid embarrassment, it’s always best to ask the person before putting their names down on your resume.

    It’s also quite okay ( I’ve read elsewhere) to jot down a few points summarising your achievements and milestones etc at the company or institution to jolt the memory of the referrer where the person may be busy and may not remember you. Also, inform them to expect the call from the HR department. If you are asked to bring in recommendation letters from your past company or training provided,  give your referrer a deadline to have said recommendation letter ready.

These are just a few of the pitfalls to avoid as you go after these job opportunities. Prepare your cover letters and resumes and ace that interview.


Need help preparing your application and resume? I can help you write a professional, customised cover letter and resume which markets your best qualifications for the post you are interested in and lets your personality shine through. Leave a comment below

Contact me for an affordable quote:Karen Taylor

Karen Taylor

Phone/ Whatsapp: 797-5997





NVQ-J Level 1 Paper: An Introduction to Effective Workplace Communication -Part 1




We spend most of our time doing it. We do it even in our sleep.

Even when we are not deliberately doing it, our bodies give away thoughts and feelings, so we end out doing it without trying.

It is a human activity, but some feel animals do it too. ( The jury is still out on that one as far as I am concerned.)



Whether we agree or not, a good grasp of communication skills is one of the key 21st century skills or the 4 C’s (AMA 2008) that are in demand by employers today.

In fact, based on an article carried in the 2011 Winter edition of the Journal of Career and Technical Education, your success as an employee and the stature you achieve going forward will hinge heavily on it.

According the document  titled ‘Employment Skills for 21st Century Workplace: The Gap Between Faculty and Student Perceptions’  cited three major business surveys  itemised communication as one of “the work skills that is  important for employment in the 21st century.”

These employer surveys were conducted by the Partnership for 21st Century Skills (2008), The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) and the American Management Association (AMA).

All three found evidence that communication was the top-rated skill.  “When compared, these studies appear to build upon and reinforce one another in addressing the entry-level skills desired by employers, ” the writers concurred.

Here is what each report cited:

  • “. . . the top five skills employers sought were professionalism, teamwork, oral communication, ethics and social responsibility, and reading comprehension.” (Partnership for 21st Century Skills (2008)
  •  “. . . the top five skills sought by employers are communications skills, analytical skills, teamwork skills, technical skills and a strong work ethic.” (The NACE Research Report)
  • “. . . respondents indicated that not only do future workers need to be able to read, write, and perform arithmetic; but also they need the following skills: critical thinking (problem solving), communication, collaboration, and creativity (innovation), which will become even more important to organizations.” (AMA 2010)


Executives surveyed by the AMA were reportedly concerned about the high level of underskilled high school graduates who were entering the labour force and stated that “there is much room for improvement in today’s workforce in these areas” (AMA, 2010).

The Partnership for 21st Century Skills report further advanced in its conclusion the need for business and community leaders, policy makers, and educators “to work together so that future workers will have the workplace skills necessary to succeed”.

If that bit of data did not put to rest  any skepticism you may have as to why you need communication training, I hope that by the time you’re finished with your NVQ Level 1 Communication class, you will be able to appreciate and know the Why, What and How of effective communicative discourse.

The purpose of this and upcoming posts is to help you achieve this goal.  I will be looking at the essential points you need to know to be ready for your paper.


Let’s start with a definition of the term ‘Communication’.

The website offers this precise and extensive definition: “Communication is giving, receiving or exchanging ideas, information, signals or messages through appropriate media, enabling individuals or groups to persuade, to seek information, to give information or to express emotions.”


Essentially we communicate so as to

  • exercise our influence on others
  • establish and maintain relationships, i.e. to foster friendships, networking and polite discourse
  • to give and seek information
  • to evoke changes in our and other’s attitudes
  • to  motivate others

Understanding the communication process helps you to receive and broadcast information that will have an effect on the flow of communication in the workplace. It doesn’t matter whether you are a plumber, electrician, hairdresser or IT technician, good communication skills are required in any job.

When working in a retail environment, you will be in contact with a wide range of people daily, including:

♦ Work colleagues

♦ Supervisors or managers

♦ Customers and/or clients

♦ Suppliers of goods and services such as delivery persons, banks, contractors, etc.

♦ General visitors

Developing effective communication skills is extremely important when you are in constant contact with people. Let’s look at why this is so.


The development of effective communication skills can greatly affect:

♦ The quality of customer service

♦ The delivery of customer service

♦ Workplace productivity

We communicate effectively when the same message sent is the same one received. In other words, the message that the sender transmits should be interpreted as closely to if not exactly what the sender intended and meant.

So if I tell you ”the sun is hot’, you should not hear, ‘get my hat’. And if that happens, it would indicate a breakdown in communication has occurred.

Effective communication skills can also assist you when:

♦ Resolving complaints and handling confrontations

♦ Participating in staff meetings

♦ Maintaining your personal rights as an employee

♦ In a learning and/or training situation



The communication process has seven basic elements that are essential for effective interaction. Those elements are:

♦ The context – the settings in which we communicate. Context can refer to

  • Place – church, conference, construction site, a client’s home or business place,
  • Event – staff meeting, customer’s meeting, party, wedding, funeral
  • Culture – Jamaican, American, Indian etc.

♦ The channel or mode – the methods, forms or types of communication we use to send our messages

  • Channels
    • Contracts
    • Blueprints
    • Safety talks
    • Health and safety committee minutes
    • Instructions
    • Face-to-face conversation
    • Telephone conversation
    • Email
    • Operating manuals

♦ The sender – the person or source who/which sends the message to the receiver.

♦ The receiver – the person or source who/which receives the message; this would be the listener or the reader.

Interference, distractions, or noise – anything that hinders, distorts or interrupts the transmission of a clear, positive message to the sender.

♦ The message – the what and how relayed during the communication transaction; the ideas, thoughts, feelings, and responses encoded and  conveyed by the senders and receivers.

  • The feedback – the response message sent by the receiver to the sender.

This Mindtools Video explains fully how each component works in what is known as the communication loop.


We communicate in three broad modes:

1. Verbally – using words (includes speaking and writing)

2. Non-verbally – using non-word based channels, such as body language

3. Visually – using graphics, images, colours such as signs, symbols, signals

We’ll explore this topic further in another post.

It’s now time to check what you have grasped from the lesson.


Read the scenario below and answer the questions that follow.


A site supervisor is in his office and wants to get some information about a new safety product being advertised by his supplier. He decides he will email the sales representative instead of phoning. He asks in his email about pricing, and has listed his requirements on an attachment.

An hour later, the sales representative sends a message back thanking him for his enquiry. However, he says that he did not receive the attachment.

The site supervisor re-sends the message with the attachment, and the sales representative responds shortly after with a listing of the varying versions of the product that the site supervisor expressed an interest in, along with prices and availability.

With your understanding of the communication process, and using the above example, answer the following questions:


1) What was the setting?


2) Who was the sender?



3) Who was the receiver?


4) What mode of communication was used?

5) What interference did the communication encounter?



6) What feedback did the sender receive?

I’ll discuss the answers in the next post. But go ahead and leave your answers in the Comment box below.



Weekend Edition – Writing Company and What to Write Plus Writing Tips and Good Reads

Had to borrow this one.

Live to Write - Write to Live

The (Writing) Company You Keep

pin quiet peopleWriting is a solitary endeavor. Though your process may include research or interviews or similar tasks that require interaction with other human beings, when you finally come to it – the selecting and ordering of words on the page – you must tackle the task on your own. Despite the necessary prevalence of seclusion in our lives, writers – especially successful ones – seem to have an unexpected skill for creating and maintaining strong communities.

Again and again I have read interviews in which a freshly published author attributes a great part of his or her hard-earned success to the support of other writers. Sometimes the associations are loose ones – membership in a large writing organization like Boston’s Grub Street, for instance. Sometimes the connections are more intimate, such as a small, private group of half a dozen fiercely loyal and committed (to…

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