Here’s my first blog on WordPress. Just taking a generic stab, so please don’t throw me under the bus!
In this horrific economy, the demand for jobs is high, while the availability is minimal.
I know numerous people who bitch and complain about not being able to find a job, or are unsuccessful at landing an interview.
Let’s evaluate things a little closer:
What do you submit to a prospective employer first? Your resume.
It’s mind-boggling to think that so many people submit incomplete and/or grammatically incorrect resumes. It’s kinda like walking into an interview with a stain on your shirt. Not cute.
One of the biggest concepts which has helped me when writing my resume, is to assume the reader knows nothing about you or your former position(s). You need to make yourself sound great, without appearing grandiose.
Carefully analyze the job description for key words and phrases. Carefully integrate these into your resume to pin-point specific areas required for the job.
- What did you do? Be descriptive.
- How did it contribute to the overall health of the organization?
- Did you streamline a specific process, reducing costs?
- Did you implement a new procedure? Did you invent something new?
“Utilized knowledge of assigned programs, priorities, goals, and objectives to identify workflow problems or other situations which had a negative impact on organizational efficiency.”
- Highlight any obstacles or barriers you overcame to achieve a desired result.
One of mine would be that I maintained my professionalism and dedication to my job, while taking 17 units. Inevitably, my dedication earned me a 3.6 semester G.P.A., and demonstrated to pessimists that “Yes, I can do it!”
- Demonstrate a level of commitment and persistence!
“Ensured accuracy and conformance with applicable workplace regulations. Resolved complex timekeeping concerns and inquiries.”
- Did you receive any awards or certificates? If so, describe them.
- Do you speak any foreign languages? Highlight these skills, even if you don’t speak the entire language. If you don’t know any foreign languages, consider brushing up on some!
- Do you have any future educational/personal/career goals? Show motivation! Highlight classes which will cater to your career and educational goals.
“Currently pursuing my Bachelor of Science in Engineering, and my Bachelor of Arts in English.”
“Continue to exceed the organization’s requirement of a 2.0 G.P.A.”
“Enroll in a C++ Programming course, to enhance my analytical skills.”
Sure, you may have your PhD, but nothing looks worse than a misspelled word- especially those that have double entendres. Specifically, know the difference between “your” and “you’re”; “there”, “their”, and “they’re”.
What if you’re rather inexperienced?
That’s alright! What you need to evaluate is the experience you DO have.
- Have you ever baby-sat a child? If so, this demonstrates trust and accountability. You must be a fairly decent person if another individual allows you to care for their child.
- Have you ever cared for an animal while their owner was away? See above. This also demonstrates that the pet owner can trust you with their fur-baby.
- Have you ever house-sat? Someone who gives you full access to their house definitely trusts you.
- Have you ever volunteered? Donating your time is HUGE. This will prove your selflessness, and ability to show compassion toward others.
- Have you ever tutored or mentored a child? See above.
Once you land your interview, dress to impress!
- Be sure to make frequent eye contact with the interviewer. Constantly looking away may signal dishonesty or nervousness. It’s like when you’re on a first date, you want to appear confident and appealing! Own your shit! You want that second date, don’t you? (AKA the job!)
- Keep your hands in your lap, or relaxed on the table. Don’t sit there and twiddle your thumbs or play with your hair.
- A no-brainer- DON’T CHEW GUM! You look like a cow chomping on grass, and nobody likes to hear chewing as they are attempting to interview you. Take care of your oral fixations PRIOR to the interview.
- Sit still, and focus on the questions. Carefully navigate tricky questions by turning positives into negatives.
- As you finish your interview, be polite, and say something along the lines of “Thank you for taking a moment to interview me.” Followed by a polite smile.
Certainly, not everyone will land their dream job the first time around. It takes time and perseverance on your part. Do some research on the organization you are applying to. If possible, make some internal contacts to get a feel for what type of work is done there.