You’ve been thinking about making a change. You’re thinking about looking for a new job. “Oh, I’ll wait until the new year, then I’ll start looking”. This is what runs through most people’s minds. New year, new you and all that. But, why wait until the new year? December is a great time to get a head start venturing into your job search. Get your resume updated. Fine tune your LinkedIn profile. Audit your social media presence, and make sure you are presented in a professional manner. You want to make sure that you are ready for that fresh start. Get these tasks completed now, so that a new start is possible in the new year.
Get ready to apply for jobs in December. Don’t wait until January to start your job search. December can be a quiet time for a lot of corporations. This could be a perfect opportunity to get seen by that recruiter or HR Manager. Not everybody takes 2 weeks off during the winter holidays. Some decisions makers might take a day or two off here or there. It can be a slow time of year for their customers, which means they could have more time to review that stack of resumes on their desk. There is also a real possibility of going to job interviews during this slow business time of year.
Make 2018 a year that you start off right. Be prepared before the new year begins.
The leaves are turning colour, there’s a slight chill in the air, and the rain has started…all reminding us that fall has arrived and school is starting. Although some of us are finished with school, fall indicates a new start and a kind of new beginning, even though the calendar year is not yet complete.
For us McNakers, we start to think about the upcoming year by planning our corporate philanthropy initiatives along with other strategic objectives. Next year, we plan to hold our annual charity event called GrapeJuice, in support of Big Sisters of BC Lower Mainland, whose mandate is to help young girls through their mentorship program. We are also working to plan another Career Launcher session to help job-seeking aged ‘little sisters’ prepare for the start of their own financial stability. This initiative, which we have hosted in past years, has a goal to help young girls launch their career foundation.
All too often, young people are unsure of where to start when preparing for their first job. We try to help guide the development of a well-prepared resume; a resume that chronologically lists some recent work experience and other skills they have acquired over the years. If there is not a lot of work experience, then we suggest listing their volunteer work or extra-curricular activities, as it can be just as important for future employers to review. Skills gained while volunteering or studying are applicable to list on a resume – skills such as meeting deadlines (completing homework on time) as well as being organized and detail-oriented. Some students struggle as to what to put on their resume to make it long enough, but a 1 or 2-page resume is more than adequate for future employers at this level.
The interview is also critical as an excited student only has a few minutes to make that positive first impression. We try to pass along tips to be prepared for a first interview. We recommend reviewing what the company and position require, preparing appropriate examples of experience, arriving early and dressing appropriately, answering the questions succinctly, making eye-contact and showing enthusiasm, and following up with a thank you. These suggestions may seem like common sense, however, for a young person who hasn’t interviewed before, this is completely new territory and requires preparation.
Need to brush up on job interview etiquette? Take a look at this short video with two quick tips to keep in mind for your next job interview.
After the interview, take the time with a follow up email or message to say thank you to the hiring manager for taking their time to meet with you. Always remember to be patient and polite when asking about next steps etc.
When it comes to asking questions, make sure you have your most important questions ready to ask. Time them throughout the interview versus loading them up at the beginning or the end.
And remember – Don’t forget to relax…. You might find yourself enjoying the job-search process.
Poor grammar, spelling mistakes, too many pages long…recruiters have seen many resume mistakes. Make sure your resume is polished and ready so you can get that interview! Hiring Managers have been known to spend only 6 seconds looking at your resume. Not getting any call backs from your job applications and resume submissions? Perhaps it is time to review your resume, and make sure it is clear and concise.
Here is a short video on 9 common mistakes people make on their resumes.
video credit: Business Insider
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At a quick glance at a resume, hiring managers can easily be too quick to judge to determine if the candidate deserves an interview.
In this TED Talk video below, HR Manager Regina Hartley shares with us why highly motivated ‘scrappers’ are the kind of candidates hiring managers should be looking out for. Scrappers have experienced hardships and overcome adversity which has shaped them to be highly motivated, productive and successful.
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Getting ready for a job interview? Want to feel more confident? Want to be more confident? Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shares with us in this informative TEDTalk how we can “Fake it ’til you become it.”
We know that our body language communicates to others how they feel about us. In this video below, Amy demonstrates how our body language governs how we think and feel about ourselves.
Power posing for a couple of minutes before a situation such as a job interview can drive the effect of power and confidence. Our thoughts can be influenced by our own body language, and these expressions of power.
Consider the following guidelines when going on a job interview. These guidelines will ensure a positive experience for yourself as well as for the company you chose to work for.
Be on time. Intend to arrive a few minutes early to a job interview (but no more than 10 minutes)
Dress professionally and show a positive attitude. Do not underestimate the importance and impact of professional image. If ever unsure of dress code it is better to be more corporately dressed on the first meeting.
Research the company before meeting with the company representative. Plan to have at least one or two relevant questions to ask during the meeting.
Employers want to surround their teams with positive people. Always speak positively about past employers and team members or even yourself. Any negativity or discussion of ‘personality conflict’ will not be looked upon favourably. It is better to talk about highlight points and if a discussion about a ‘challenge’ comes up in the interview always look to find the ‘positive outcome’ that you learned from it or that may have resulted from it. (as this can sometimes be a challenging topic consider your response to this in advance of the interview)
Take notes during an interview if appropriate and ensure you are clear on any position details. Ask questions—don’t assume.
Send a thank you card to the person that interviewed you. In the internet age, this will certainly help you stand out. Be sure to double check for any spelling or grammatical errors before sending.