You have just finished university and you’re ready to hit the job market. The first thing you do is write a CV and cover letter in order to be ready to apply for thousands of applications online. It is time-consuming and frustrating but you know it is a must in order to find your dream job. It has been a couple of months already, and while you keep sending your CV out to employers you still haven’t had a single interview. Then you start worrying what is wrong and why is it that nobody is noticing you. You feel depressed and exhausted, and start thinking that maybe you will not find your dream job at all. All these negative thoughts come to your mind, and you start thinking was it worth spending all those years at university studying at all. Maybe then you end up thinking that you need a job which is not according to your qualifications and dreams. Does this sound familiar to you? Are you graduate who feels exactly the same? Are you nodding yes? If yes, keep reading because this article is for you!
The first thing you need to do now is to change your thinking and delete all those negative ideas from your mind. Start thinking positive! You may ask what it has to do with your career and job search. But positive attitude, believes and thoughts attracts positive improvements and changes in your life. Do not forget that we are what we think and we achieve what we believe!
Then all those negatives ideas are out of your mind focus on improving your personality and you professional background. In this article I will provide steps how you can become THE ONE for employer.
Improve your CV.
You need to get rid of generic CV which you send to every employer you apply. You have just 9 seconds to stand out from the crowd when companies are looking through all CVs they have received.
- Be different. Think how you can distinguish yourself from all graduates. What is unique about you? Show your personality in your CV. Reveal your strengths and creativity.
- Research the company you are applying. You do not want to send out the generic CV even if it seems to be easy. Check company’s requirements for an employee and try to match your characteristics to it. If it is possible, check company’s website, their mission statement and values and adapt your skills and personality to them.
- Highlight your experience and mention the value you had delivered during it. Did you do any volunteer work, participated in projects? Mention it and try to adapt them to company’s requirements.
- Use your personal statement to show your interest and experience in the chosen industry. You need to show to employer that you as determined as ever to work in this industry. Also, highlight your skills which make you good for this industry and what value you can offer to the company.
Change your cover letter.
The cover letter is as much important as your CV. It does not just support your CV, but it fulfils it. Do not try to google examples of cover letter because you will end up just copying the same phrases as everybody else. It is time to use your imagination and creativity in order to be noticed.
- Tailor your letter according to the company and the position you are applying. Do some research about the company and do not forget to mention why you want to work in this company. Think why you are suitable for the position you are applying. Try to sell yourself in the letter.
- Be unique. In the cover letter you have an ability to show your personality. Do not repeat the same thing as in your CV. This is a chance for you to shine and show your motivation to work for them.
- Be presentable. Do not write a long cover letter. It should be no more than one page. Make sure that your cover letter has a good structure and looks clean and neat.
Take care of social media.
You may think that social media is not that important but the truth is that nowadays is crucially important. You can find jobs through LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter. Even if you are not searching for jobs through them, you need to clean your Facebook page and other social websites. Get rid of pictures which represent you unprofessionally. Delete all posts and photos related to usage of illegal drugs, alcohol and sexual content. Also, do not forget to fix all grammar mistakes.
- Set up your LinkedIn account. This would help you to land a job because a lot of employers search for you on the Internet before inviting you for an interview.
Nailing the interview.
Finally you got an interview after such a hard work applying for all those vacancies! You are so happy that you got it. I do not want to put you down, but it is not the end yet. I know that a lot of graduates even do not get into this stage and you did. But do not do a mistake thinking that you do not need to prepare for an interview at all. Do not think that it is easy. It is not easy as you think it is. If you want to succeed and to get the job you should follow some preparation guidelines.
- Before an interview.
- Think what you will wear for the interview. If you buying new clothes, do not forget to try them before going. You need to feel comfortable and look confident.
- Do some research about the company. Check what you like about the company and what do you think needs improvement.
- Think about the question what they can ask and how would you answer them. Know your weaknesses and strengths. Think about what your biggest challenge was and how did you achieve it.
- Search for information what employers usually ask during the interview. There are a lot of examples and suggestions how to answer questions. Just do not be lazy and do it.
- Going to the interview.
- Prepare some copies of your CV to bring. Do not forget to take a notebook and a pen. Who knows maybe you will need it at one point.
- Do not be late! Arrive couple minutes earlier then you will have time to calm down and prepare yourself. There is no excuse for being late.
- At the interview.
- Be nice to everyone in the office and do not forget to smile. Be positive! Do not forget to shake hands when you meet hiring manager. Your handshake should not be too strong or too weak.
- Your body language is very important. Sit up straight and keep an eye contact. Do not cross your arms or legs. Even if you are stressed during the interview, do not forget to listen carefully.
- Answer questions in a simple and sweet way. Tell some real examples from your experience when answering a question. Your answers should not be too long. Do not rush to answer them. Take a couple of seconds to think about your answer. Never say that you do not know the answer.
- Always ask questions after you are being interviewed. It will show that you care about the company and you did your research about them. Ask employer about future projects, strategies and how could you exceed your expectations. Do not ask about the salary because this question is solved when signing the contract.
- Post the interview.
- Send a thank you note or email to the company. The purpose of it is that you will show your interest in the position and the company. This will demonstrate your professional manners as well.
Finally your dream came true! You get the job you wanted. But now you are stressed if you will be a good employee in the company. You do not know how you should act and behave in the office. You are afraid of your first week in the workplace but do not be afraid. Everything will be alright especially if you will follow some basic guidelines.
During your first day observe how people in the office are dressing. Are their outfit is more casual or formal? Try to adapt your wardrobe to theirs. Business casual is always appropriate and remember overdressing is always better than underdressing.
Do not rush to go home.
Arrive 10 minutes earlier in order to get ready to work at time and do not start packing your things before your working hours are finished. Expect that during first weeks you may stay at work longer than usual. Spending more time at work will show that you are motivated to work and you try to do your best.
Be good at introducing yourself. Always smile and be positive with everybody. It is very important to get along with your co-workers.
Do not be afraid to ask questions.
If you do not understand something, ask your trainee and do not be afraid. Of course, always take a note of important information you are being introduced.
Always be doing something.
If you did your job, read it once more to make sure they are no mistakes. Do not be afraid to ask what you should do next. If your trainee is busy, just wait for him while looking at your previous task once more but do not go on Facebook or other social media. You can ask to watch what other employees are doing. It is still part of your learning.
JUST BE YOURSELF AND YOU WILL SUCCEED
Never ever lie to the employer about your experience and skills. Be honest and try to look at your weaknesses in the positive way. Do not let negative beliefs come to your mind. Think positive and try your best to get where you want to be. Do not be upset if your job search is taking a long time. Use that free time productively. Get involved in courses, charity work which can give you experience and enhance your CV. Just do not be lazy and do your best!