Getting Your Dream Job #3: How To Hand In Your Resume

CONFIDENCE IS KEY!

shutterstock_72258340 Below you’ll find various ways on how to go about handing in your resume.

  • Approaching Businesses

– Dress to impress!

– Have your resume, references and cover letter ready (and not crinkled or creased!)

– Walk into the business, ask for the manager.
If the manager is not there at that moment, ask when they’ll be back and return at that time. Do not just hand your resume over to a sales assistant!

– When meeting the manager, shake hands, introduce yourself (name, current occupation/field of study, give a 30 second spiel on what you appreciate about the company and ask if they have any positions available), and most importantly, make sure you smile!

– You’re also going to want to remember the manager’s name (even if that means writing it down once you’ve left) so in any future situation, you can create a personal connection

– The reply to your question about available positions can go a number of different ways:

“Sorry, we don’t have any positions available at the moment”
To which you could reply….
“Ok. What can I do to show you I should be the next person you hire?”
More often than not, saying that is the very thing!

OR

“Yes. We will give you a call in a few days”
To which you could reply…
“Great, look forward to hearing from you. Nice meeting you *insert manager’s name here*” and shake their hand firmly.
If you don’t get the call, don’t fret. Just pop back after the time they said they would call, ask for the manager (hopefully you can ask for them by name this time), shake their hand again and say something along the lines of…
“Hi, I’m John Smith. I came in *insert time period here* and was just wondering if there was any progress on available positions?” Make sure you have your resume, cover letter and references with you.

OR

“Yes. Why don’t you come out into the back now for a quick interview?”
If this happens, make sure you are prepared (Make sure you’ve read Getting Your Dream Job #4: How To Prepare For An Interview)

Do not refuse this offer! Make sure when you go in to meet the manager that you are not in a rush and have the time for this to happen.

  • Website Application

– Cover letters are often required

– References are often required

– Resume will definitely be needed
MAKE SURE FILE NAMES ARE APPROPRIATE!
eg. ‘John Smith Resume’ rather than ‘johnres11’

– Apply for everything you want to!
All it takes is a click – just make sure your cover letter and resume are applicable to the position being offered

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Getting Your Dream Job #4: How To Prepare For An Interview

STRESS LESS!

shutterstock_88248997 There are 4 things YOU can do to make an outstanding first impression:

  • Be confident in YOU

Dress to impress! Show up confident in yourself and looking professional.
Be convinced within yourself that the company will be better off with you and make sure you can clearly and confidently express why.
Have questions prepared for the interview. Often the employer will ask you if you have any questions about the job, at some point in the interview – make sure you have something to ask!
Appropriate question: Is there any potential to advance to managerial positions within the company?
Inappropriate question: How long is my lunch break?

  • Know YOU

Make sure you can talk about anything on your resume in great detail! But know the right stuff – they don’t want to know WHAT you did in great detail, but rather HOW it shows your character/personality/work ethic.
Have your resume, cover letter and references with you also! (The employer would have most likely lost it by now…)

  • Calm YOU

Be punctual, or even better…EARLY! This will give you time to think through any last minute thoughts, calm all your nerves and shows them that you are serious about the job.
You have nothing to be nervous about. If you get the job, great! But if you don’t, your life is not over. There are a gazillion other jobs out there and probably one that is more suited to you.
Everything happens for a reason, trust God.
And without a doubt, the best way to calm yourself…PRAY! Hand it over to God, he lights your path.

  • Be YOU!

The best thing you can do in a job interview is be yourself. Trying to be something you’re not or acting like someone you’re not can not only misleading to the employer (potentially causing problems after they’ve hired you and you turn our to be a completely different person) but could stop you from getting the job! The worst thing you could do is be fake. Often when people are not themselves, they come across uncomfortable and nervous – this is not the impression you want to be giving!
Be yourself, answer questions honestly, keep with your personality, don’t change yourself for a job. That way, you’ll get the job that is perfect for you! Work doesn’t have to be something we hate!

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Getting Your Dream Job #5: How To Dress To Impress

YA GOTTA BE STYLIN’ IF YA WANT SOME HIRIN’

shutterstock_89476936 You’ve probably seen the term ‘dress to impress’ appear throughout the previous articles…. This is what it means:

  • Dress like the staff
  • If you’re unsure, wear business pants and a white top (Even for retail)
  • Enclosed black shoes
  • Hair back/off your face (this applies to males too)
  • No excessive make up or jewellery
  • Look professional

ATTITUDES FOR SUCCESS!

While you’re still searching for a job, remember these points:

  • Be passionate
  • Show initiative
  • Keep going
  • Keep believing – There is a job out there somewhere for you!

And finally, once you get the job….

CONGRATULATIONS!!!

You have worked your way to success!

– Be early for your first day/shift

– Ask questions if you have them (it shows your understanding), just make sure you aren’t asking something you’re already meant to know/they’ve already told you!

– Take initiative – if you see something that needs to be done, and you know how to do it… do it!

 

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Getting Your Dream Job #2: How To Write Your Resume

BE SPECIFIC AND SHOW YOUR SKILLS

shutterstock_34195231 For most job applications, you’ll need to have a few different things ready. A resume is a definite must! A cover letter is recommended, and it shows your professionalism to have references and referees ready. If you are unsure of what these are, or how to write them, then the points below are for you!

  • Resume

Resumes are like snowflakes, each one is unique!

There are many different ways to write a resume. Depending on the type of job, finding the right template is essential. Google is full of templates for different occupations. But if you’re struggling, use the following basic template:

– Personal Details (name/suburb/phone/emails)
– Career Summary
– Education & Qualifications
– Volunteer work
– Interests
– References & Referees

In any resume, make sure what you are writing is specific, or applicable to that particular job. You want to show all your skills that can apply to that job, but don’t ramble on.

  • Cover Letters

Write a new cover letter for each company you apply to

A cover letter consists of:
– A little about yourself (not so much your qualifications – that is what your resume is for – but rather how you relate to the company)
– What you appreciate about the company
– How you can build on the company (This is where you must research, research and research!!! Go to the company website, find their aim or values, know the history of the company and using this information, make note of how you can support this as an employee)

  • References

Make sure you have at least one reference with your resume. A reference is a document written (and by written, I mean typed) by either a past employer, or someone who knows you/how you work stating all the wonderful things about you and your work ethic! They show employers that you are a valuable employee. Upon leaving places of employment, ask your employer if they can write a reference for you.

  • Referees

Referees are similar to a reference in the sense that they are either a past employer or someone who knows you/how you work/what you excel at, who is happy for your potential employer to contact them seeking information about you. A referee could be your old employer, or someone like your youth leader or Pastor.

When listing a referee on a resume, give their name (first and last), occupation and their phone number.

Before handing anyone’s information over to your potential employer, make sure you have approached your referee asking their permission to be listed as such.

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Getting Your Dream Job #1: How To Find Job Opportunities

shutterstock_63790765 Getting a job doesn’t have to be stressful or difficult and there are often more places than you think looking for staff. You just have to know what you want, and how to market yourself for such. By learning how to….

  1. Find job opportunities
  2. Write your resume
  3. Hand in your resume
  4. Prepare for an interview
  5. Dress to impress

….in this series of 5 articles, getting your dream job will be easy!

So we’ll start with #1: How To Find Job Opportunities

WORK YOUR NETWORK

There are 5 different networks YOU have immediate access to, each offering their own connections to various workplaces.

  • Your Personal Network

Your personal network is the simplest way to get connected to an available position, as all it requires is a friendly question.

Firstly, ask your friends.
There may be positions opening up at their workplace, or they may have heard of other places hiring. (It’s a bonus if their workplace is hiring, as they can potentially recommend you to their boss.)

Then comes the family – Parents, siblings and your Uncle George.
Just like your friends, members of your family may have positions opening up at their workplaces and may have heard of other places hiring. Make sure you don’t forget to chat to Uncle George at Christmas. Often, Uncle George is the CEO of a large company who could do with an assistant or something of the sort. Work all your connections – the least you have to look around, the better!

After asking every friend and family member you possibly can, go to your friendly neighbours.
Similarly, their workplace may be hiring, or they may know of another. However, neighbours differ in the fact that they can give you a workplace that differs to most. They may be an elderly couple who would love to pay you to mow their lawn every couple of weeks, or a couple with kids, who wouldn’t mind paying you to pick the kids up from school, or babysit them on date night – so it never hurts to stick your head over the fence and discuss your lack of employment.

Get friendly with the locals.
This point is for those of you on a first name basis with your baker or newsagent. Local businesses love supporting community and there is a good chance they need someone else to bake the bread or sell the newspapers every now and then. Casually let them know you’re looking for a job.

  • Internet

The internet is FULL of potential jobs, you just have to find them.

Facebook (www.facebook.com) – What’s on your mind? “Anyone know of any places hiring?” Hopefully the comments start rolling in….

Seek (www.seek.com.au) – They call themselves Australia’s #1 job site, try and prove them wrong.

Gumtree (www.gumtree.com.au) – Gumtree is filled with various job opportunities, ranging from banking and finance to nanny/babysitting. They even have call centre jobs. Even if there isn’t a suitable job for you on there, it may give you ideas of other places to apply to.

Company sites – such as The Cotton On Group (http://shop.cottonon.com/careers/) – a website that lets you apply to 7 different companies from the one website, or sites for companies like MYER (http://www.myer.com.au/careers), that allow you to apply for retail, or office jobs.

  • Print Sources

Your trusty local newspaper or Saturday paper will have a classifieds full of job opportunities staring you in the face – worth a squiz I say.

It may also be worth a stroll through your local shopping centre, taking note of any job ads in shop windows.

  • Agencies

If you apply to the requirements, Centrelink can list you as a job seeker, and hook you up with one of their employees who will go through your resume with you and help you apply for jobs.

Private Recruitment Agencies such as http://www.kellyservices.com.au/ are another support service who can guide you through the job application process.

  • Cold Calling

Approaching places of interest with your resume in hand and dressed to impress! (See: Getting Your Dream Job #3: How To Hand In Your Resume)

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Leaving Uni qualified, prepared and skilled for the marketplace.

#1 No two university courses are the same. Some offer highly practical training and compulsory work experience, while other provide strong theoretical frameworks from which to develop your experience. To succeed in the workplace after university you need a strong mix of both theory and experience.

Most university students have part time or casual jobs to support themselves while they study. Instead of just sticking your retail or menial labour job, why not start applying for part time roles in the industry that you are studying in. It may take a while to find an employee willing to take on an inexperienced undergraduate, but you can keep working your old job while you apply so there’s no harm in trying. Keep reworking your resume and approach businesses that you admire for work.

#3 Short term internships are also extremely beneficial to undergraduates. It make seem like a sacrifice, particularly with your finances dwindling due to having to cut back on work, but the experience you gain will help you immeasurably when you start looking for jobs. Look for internships over your mid year or end of year break.

If you can, join the industry body that governs the industry you want to work in. You can easily find these by searching the internet or asking your lecturers for information. These bodies will keep you updated about what’s happening in your industry and may even have regular networking events that you could attend. Don’t underestimate the power of making connections in the industry. If you can demonstrate such enthusiasm and focus as an undergraduate, it won’t be long until your snapped up by someone in your network of contacts.

Approach your studies seriously. If you have the ability to achieve high marks in your subject, you should work hard to get these. Some industry employers are very interested in you academic transcript and want to see that you are able to apply yourself. Good marks can make a great impression on a potential employer. Couple this with eagerness to enter the industry and you will have a winning combination.

Nailing that interview.

#1 After years of hard work, you are finally qualified for your career of choice! All you have to do now if get your first full time job. That’s easier said than done.

Many graduates find themselves writing dozens of resumes and going to interview after interview trying to get their foot in the door. There’s no quick way around this, particularly in competitive industries, but there are some things you can do to nail your interview, putting your best foot forward and giving you a better chance of being recruited.

First impressions

While not all professions require a crisp corporate look, recruiters will want to see that you are a serious potential employee. For guys, suit pants and an ironed white shirt with a tie and for girls, tailored pants or skirt with a elegant shirt or top are perfect for almost any industry interview. Even if you find that the recruiter is very casually dressed, it’s much better to be too formal that too casual. It goes without saying keep yourself neat and tidy. Iron your clothes, polish your shoes, keep your hair neat and avoid wearing too much make up. Focus on letting your personality and talent shine and don’t worry about trying to get the recruiter’s attention with flashy clothes.

Body Language

#3 You may feel pretty nervous walking into interviews, so be sure to keep some strong body language to help you sail through. Make sure your handshake is firm and confident and make eye contact as you introduce yourself. Sit toward the front of your seat and lean slightly forward. This will demonstrate that you are engaged and enthusiastic about the opportunity. Bring a notepad and pen to the interview to take notes. Even if you don’t write anything down, you are communicating your preparedness just by pulling these out.

Research the company
Most recruiters will start the interview with asking what you know about the company. You can really impress your prospective employer by demonstrating how much you know about their business. Visit their website and find out who their major clients are and all the services that they provide.

Have some questions prepared
Inevitably the recruiter will ask you if you have any questions. Many inexperienced people fail to prepare for this part of the interview. This is an opportunity for you to find out more about the company and the role, which will help you to decide if the com#2pany is one that you want to work for. Write down a few questions before the interview and refer to them you have the opportunity to ask them.

Be yourself

Most companies are not only looking for someone with the right qualifications and skill set, but they want someone who is going to fit in with the rest of their employees. By being yourself, you will help the recruiter to work out if you will be happy working in their work environment in the long term. Being yourself also guarantees that are recruited to a company that suits your personality and disposition.

What employers REALLY look for (the value-add beyond your qualification)

#1 Many students jump into a university degree and expect that at the end of their three to five years of undergrad study they will emerge workplace ready and employable. While this may be true for some courses, most employers are looking for more than a qualification. As a student you need to realize that there may be a lot of competition in your industry and you may need to more than stack up Ps and Cs to break into your dream career.

Being trained in your field of interest ticks the first box for many employers, but many recruiters are looking for a set of key qualities that in people they want to hire. Here are some of the most common qualities employers look for and practical ways that you can develop and demonstrate these qualities.

Communication skills

This quality is listed on most jobs ads and is sometimes used interchangeably with the term interpersonal skills. This is because regardless of the role you take in a company you will inevitably have to work with people, be they co-workers, superiors, clients or suppliers. Having good communication skills means more than being able to talk to people. It is also the ability to connect, relate to and interactive with others in a productive and positive way. Any type of customer service work experience while you study is excellent for demonstration strong communication skills.

Work experience in the field

While on the job experience may not be a requirement for many entry-level positions, it can be an invaluable advantage in your job search. Showing that you have taken the initiative to find work experience during your studies demonstrates that you are serious about getting ahead in your industry of choice and also gives you a head start in the role that you will eventually take up. Make an effort to clock up some hours in paid or unpaid internships, casual, part time or holiday work in your field of choice. If you can’t get work experience in the role you want in your industry, consider applying for administration or assistant roles in your industry. Any exposure you get to the industry is better than no experience. If money is an concern, consider saving up for few months so that you can support yourself while you take an unpaid internship.

Ability to self manage

Employers don’t want to have to hold your hand as your navigate your way through your first few months of your new job. What employers will be looking for is someone who can organize their responsibilities without having another paid staff member having to supervise them. You can develop this quality in yourself through your existing part time job and your studies. You further develop this quality by demonstrating commitment to extra curricular activities or membership in societies or groups outside of your studies. Having some complexity or diversity in your life during your studies will show that you are able to focus on a variety of things.

#2 Ability to work in teams

This quality is another a common one as almost all companies have some kind of team dynamic in the work place. Many employers are looking for team players who have a positive attitude and are able to work with others to find solutions and achieve results. You can develop this quality through team sports or volunteer work.

Is a gap year right for me? Some tips to get the most out of a gap year.

#1The decision to take a gap year is a big one and should be made after careful consideration. If done well a gap year can equip you with valuable experiences, any may even give you a clearer direction of the career path you want to pursue. If handled poorly you could waste a year getting apathetic in a dead end job or lose focus by getting caught up in reckless living.

There are many things you can do on a gap year. Whether you’ve decided to go travelling or you’ve got your sights set on full time for a year, you should take some time to work out what you want to get out of the year.

Lots of students choose to do extensive travel before you settle into full time study. Travel can be a wonderful eye-opening time and a lot of fun too. There’s nothing wrong with having a good time, but focusing solely on this can give you a false sense of achievement until you get back home and realize you’re no better off than when you left.

#31 If you’ve decided to jump on the next plane out of your city when you finish year 12, think about incorporating some interesting work experience opportunities, if you have the right visa, and /or some worthwhile charity work can make a lot of difference to your year. Sight seeing tourist stuff is great, but doing some hard work in country will give you a sense of purpose and may give you some ideas for your future career.

If you want to take a gap year to work, may sure that you have some clear personal development goals for the year. Full time work in the right business will give you some great skills in time management, meeting deadlines, structure and can help you to develop a strong work ethic. If you find that your manager or supervisor has some skills, traits or work habits that you admire, consider asking them to mentor you. All of this personal development will help you with your studies if you decide to go to university and will hold you in good stead in your career.

You may have in mind engaging in a combination of part-time or casual work as well as internships and volunteer work. Again having specific goals are very important for keeping you on track. With internships be sure to research your options well and keep an open mind with the position you secure. The goal is to get experience in an industry you may be interested in working in. Companies typically give interns all the menial jobs, so make sure you take a positive attitude and use your time to make a good impression and ask lots of questions if you have the opportunity.

There is also the option of using your gap year to work hard and save money for your study expenses or some other big financial goals. If you decide to go down this route be sure to make your financial goals clear and work out a budget that will help you to get there. It’s also helpful to have someone, your parents or someone else that you respect keep you accountable to your goals. Give yourself some milestones to keep yourself on track and celebrate by treating yourself to something nice each time to achieve a milestone financial figure on the way to your goal.