Get started on your new career today!
Follow these 6 simple steps and get the job you want, when you want it.
Step 1: Pinpoint Your Direction.
Are you completely certain about what you want to do, right? If not, identify all of your strengths, weaknesses, likes, dislikes and interests when thinking about your career plan. Read about fields that interest you and talk to others who are doing jobs that you find interesting.
Step 2: Do Your Research.
It is vital to learn as much as you can about the companies that interest you. Look at their Web sites, reading news articles and talking to current employees to learn as much as you can. Consider the company’s stability; will it be there for the long term?
Step 3: Assemble Your Toolkit.
The tools needed for a job search are a résumé, cover letter and a portfolio of your work. Take the time to develop a résumé and cover letter that clearly convey your strengths and experience. Here are a few tips to remember:
- Think about the type of résumé you need. A functional résumé, which highlights your abilities rather than your work history, is a good choice for first-time job seekers.
- Focus on accomplishments and results you have achieved, rather than simple descriptions of experiences.
- Use action words in your résumé and cover letter to describe your experiences, such as “initiated,” “produced” and “managed.”
- If you are low on practical work experience, look to your part-time work, school activities or volunteer positions. Evaluate all of your experience and translate how it applies to any job you might apply to.
Step 4: Network.
Take advantage of your school’s career placement office, friends who graduated before you and are already working, friends of your parents, former professors, and neighbors. Send emails or call your contacts to see if they know someone who works for a firm you are interested in joining.
Step 5: Play the Part.
If you want to join the professional world, you need to act — and look — the part. Buy a business suit and practice wearing it to get comfortable in it, not just to all of your interviews. Make sure your e-mail address and voice mail greeting are appropriate. Remember to be professional at home for a phone interview at any time. The more you play the part of a well-trained professional, the more people will see you as a professional.
Step 6: Don’t Give Up.
The real world can be a real challenge. Recognize that you will probably have to start at the bottom and work your way up. You will likely face rejection as you start looking for your first full-time job, but everyone goes through it. Just remember to be proactive, be persistent and remain confident that there is a great job out there for you!