To Do and Not To Do Following a Job Interview

To Do and Not To Do Following a Job Interview

You had a job interview and you’re pretty sure everything went well. You had done your research and had noteworthy things to say about the company. You showcased your accomplishments well with quantitative examples of how you brought your experiences to bear in your last job. Now that the job interview is done, should you just sit around and play the waiting game?  Not quite. There are things you still need to do and others you should definitely not do.

 

Thank you

The thank you note isn’t something you  do post interview. It is the final step of the interview.  Always do send a thank you note. Whether you think the interview was a success or a failure, send it. Within twenty four hours of the interview.

 

Follow up with references

Do remember to follow up with your references. The last thing you want is for an excited prospective employer to call up a reference and for the reference to have to scramble for something to say!

 

Use social media as a sounding board

Maybe the interview didn’t go as well as you hoped. Or you weren’t impressed with the company or the person interviewing you. That is information you either keep to yourself or possibly tell a close friend in private. It is absolutely not anything you should ever post on social media for the world at large to see. If there is anything you wouldn’t be very happy for a potential employer to read that you said or did, do not put it on social media for someone to find. Make sure your online presence is a professional as your professional presence.

 

Maintain professional interactions

Following the interview, you may want to follow up with the prospective employer. Maybe they seemed really eager and you can’t understand what’s taking so long. Beware of being too aggressive in your follow up. Also, don’t take the chill vibe you felt during the interview as an indication that it would be alright to get all informal during your post interview follow up.

 

All interactions with prospective employers must be as professional as they were the first moment you stepped through the door the first time.

 

Until you have an offer in hand keep looking

Based on your amazing interview, you might think you’ve got this whole job offer thing all sewn up. Until someone contacts you with an offer you are as unemployed as you were before the interview. Don’t sit back and wait for an offer that may never come. Stay proactive and ensure one does come!

 

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Maintaining Motivation During A Long Job Search

Maintaining Motivation During A Long Job Searchacebook

Some people luck out on their job search and land something in their field early on. For others the search can feel unending. When you’re met with difficulties and disappointments on a consistent basis it’s hard to stay motivated. But take heart, all job searches eventually come to an end. In the time between this time and that, here are a few tips to help keep your spirits up.

 

Get re-inspired

When our road is long sometimes we lose sight of why we set foot on it in the first place. A great way to get back in step with yourself is by talking with someone who has already accomplished the goal you’re after. Ask them if you can take them out for coffee. Pick their brain. Listen to their stories. Ask their advice.  Or if there’s no one you can talk with personally find a book about someone who has traversed a similar path and read about their journey.

 

Hearing someone else talk about how they accomplished their goals makes the whole prospect feel tangible. Remind yourself if they did it, you can too.

 

Accomplish other goals

Even if you haven’t been able to accomplish the get-a-job goal there are still plenty of other goals you CAN accomplish. Get to it. Make a list of things you want to get done and go about accomplishing them one by one. Accomplishment makes you feel good about yourself. Give yourself lots of reasons to feel good about yourself!

 

Give yourself a break

An unaccomplished goal staring you in the face every day it feels like a starving monster demanding all your attention. You can feed it all day long, but it will never get its fill. That’s why, no matter how much it roars, sometimes you just have walk away. Take breaks. Go for a coffee. Go for a walk. See your friends. Cook yourself a meal. Take time each day to do things you like. It may feel like you’re wasting time, but in realty you’re taking care of yourself mentally and physically. The monster will be waiting for you when you get back. When you’re in a better place you’ll be more inclined to feed it better, more nutritious food – which will ultimately get it out of your life sooner!

 

Create a routine

Following a routine every day helps to free up brain space for things you actually want to be thinking about. Put the things you do every day on autopilot and tackle the things that require full brain power with a full brain.

How to Bounce Back from a Layoff

How to Bounce Back from a Layoff

So, you’ve been laid off. Whether you saw it coming or not, the abrupt end of a job can be difficult to navigate. How should you react? Are you allowed to mourn? What does it mean for your future? If you find yourself in this situation, fear not. You’re not alone. In fact, you’re in the company of 1.5 million workers that are let go from their jobs each year.

Take a break

The first step to handle a layoff is to give yourself time to mentally process it. Before launching into a new job search, take the break as an opportunity to consider what you really want to be doing, whether it’s switching industries or pursuing a passion project. When you figure out your next move, spend time carefully updating your resume and tapping into your network to help find your next opportunity.

Check out the infographic from Turbo below for even more tips on how to bounce back from a layoff.

 

How to Bounce Back After You Get Laid Off

 

How Counseling Can Help Young Graduate Job Seekers

How Counseling Can Help Young Graduate Job Seekers

Guest post from Bethany Seton

At a certain point in our education, we all find ourselves at a crossroads when we’re expected to make life-changing decisions related to our future careers.  Many young people have only a very vague idea of what awaits them in the real world of business. Learning about what a job involves theoretically is different from the complex network of skills needed to become successful. Seekers need to know how to search for work. How to present themselves in the best light. Deal with people and stressful situations. Handle pressure and take initiative, to name a few. This is when the help of a counselor can be important. Proper guidance makes the transition into adulthood a lot easier.

 

Value of counseling sessions

If you’re not sure how to proceed with your career a guidance counselor is the right person to see. A confident approach to a future career means becoming aware of our strengths and weaknesses, aspirations and career goals. A good counselor will establish a valuable rapport which will enable them to better understand the student’s personality. People who specialize in working with the youth know how to listen and understand problems. How to build trust, and most importantly, assess future career goals.

Where is that ideal job?

Your first job is very rarely the dream job you were hoping for, but the point is to get as close to your ideal position as soon as possible. In order to do this, understanding the job market is essential. The counselor should closely follow the market and all the issues facing it in order to help you make the right decision. Downsizing, global competition, automation are all factors affecting job opportunities. There’s not much point in preparing for a career which is currently in decline. The modern employment environment dictates its own rules. Applicants need to be well skilled in the use of contemporary technology. They need to be open to diversity and aware of the importance of always being up to date in what’s relevant.

Once you decide on a career direction, it’s time to look for employment. Research recruitment agencies for junior jobs, or any organizations interested in hiring entry level candidates locally.

 

Application and job interview

Another thing you should pay close attention to is presentation. The first impression comes with your resume. It needs to be up to code. Don’t let the fact that you have no job experience put you off. A youth counselor can help you go through your CV to highlight your skills and qualifications, achievements and aspirations.

It is important you go through the dos and don’ts of presenting yourself in the best light during your interview. At your counseling sessions, you will be able to simulate a job interview.

You will learn the importance of body language, tone, overall conduct and how to deal with unexpected questions.

 

How to deal with stressful work situations

A career counselor cannot prepare you for every single stressful situation at work, but they can teach you how to develop healthy responses. How to establish boundaries, recharge and relax, be assertive and find support.

Graduation is a major accomplishment, but not everyone is prepared to take on the unfamiliar world of employment or deal with all the challenges the job market has to offer. Guidance can help ease you into corporate waters. If you’re honest in your sessions, if you accept your weaknesses and improve, celebrate your strengths and are eager and ready to learn – success will never be far away.

On The Job Hunt? Clean Up Your Digital Footprint!

vOn The Job Hunt? Clean Up Your Digital Footprint!

With graduation vastly approaching, now is the best time to tighten up your online presence AKA your digital footprint. Everything you’ve ever done on the internet is probably still there and might not paint you in the best light. So before you send in those applications, spruce up those cover letters, and schedule interviews, make sure you are aware of how your online presence presents you.

What’s a digital footprint anyway?

 

A digital footprint encompasses all of your online activity. Everything from likes, comments, online purchases, and social media posts are all connected to your name on the internet. Every time you post something online, websites collect all of your information by installing cookies on whatever device you’re using. They can gather your login credentials, IP address, and any other personal information about you available online. All of these tidbits of information add up to your digital footprint. Whether it’s good or bad is up to you…

 

How do I clean up my digital footprint?

 

There are several ways to change and edit your digital footprint. As long as you take the time to be tedious and do your research, your footprint will look a lot cleaner and hopefully represent you in a more professional way. Get started with some of these tips:

 

Make strong & secure passwords:

 

It’s important to make strong and secure passwords to keep your digital footprint in check. These strong passwords can also enhance your online privacy. Create complex passwords that don’t include any personal information about you that people already know or could publicly see online. For example, any birthdays, birth years or even nicknames could easily be guessed by someone who has seen your information online. Try to use symbols and numbers to mix up your passwords, making them harder to guess. This includes using caps, @ signs, 0 instead of O, and so on. Don’t forget to change your passwords every couple months to ensure you are keeping your information secure from hackers.

 

 

Google yourself:

 

This may feel cliche or unnecessary, but don’t worry, it’s not. Google yourself using your full name and the shortened version of your name, if you have one. For example, try searching “Michael Owens” and “Mike Owens” to make sure you don’t miss anything that might be listed under your name. Pay attention to any questionable written content you wrote maybe in college or even earlier in your career that might get brought up during the job hunt. This can also include any of your social media posts. Check the first couple pages of Google to make sure everything you see is positive and professional. Don’t be afraid to try other search engines as well (Bing, Yahoo, etc.) so you can be sure all the information about you matches up.

 

Implement changes:

 

Now that you’ve done all the preliminary work to enhance and update your digital footprint, it’s time to start making the necessary changes. Assess your social media accounts first, since those will be the first area your future employers will most likely look into. A recent study showed that 54% of employers found content on social media that caused them not to hire a candidate. Make sure your usernames are appropriate and professional; “@sarahlovesbeer” should not be something a future employer sees when searching your name.

 

Browse through any old photos of you to see if any need to be removed from your profile or hidden from public view. Read through tweets and any status updates or location check-ins that you might not want future employers to see. Now is the perfect time to adjust your privacy settings if you haven’t in a while. There is always the option to make your social profiles private which means your personal information will be hidden from the public, except for a small profile picture and your name.

 

Taking the time to clean up your digital footprint should be just as much a priority as updating your resume. It’s essential to show the best version of yourself, and that starts with your online persona. Follow these steps to enter the job hunt ready and prepared for a successful future!

A Strong Cover Letter Can Carry You Into An Interview

A Strong Cover Letter Can Carry You Into An Interview

Everyone knows the importance of a cover letter. One that’s well written and engaging can get you an interview even if your resume isn’t quite up to par. A strong cover letter is a way to convey potential and energy and enthusiasm that a resume simply can’t. A weak cover letter can have the opposite effect. It can make a great resume seem duller and less motivating.

 

There are several key components to every strong cover letter. Make sure you cover all of them!

 

Introduction

Before we talk about the content of the introduction we would like to talk about the importance of finding out the name of person who will be reading your letter. What letter are you going to be more motivated to read, one addressed to whom it may concern, or one addresses specifically to you? There are several ways to figure out the who on your own by checking the company out online. The most straightforward way to do it is to call and ask for the name of the hiring manager.

 

Now that you’ve addressed them by name you can go ahead and tell them a little about yourself. Why you’re applying, how you learned about the opportunity, why you’d be a good fit and an interesting point about yourself or your experience to whet their appetite.

 

Meat and potatoes

In this paragraph go deeper about your qualifications, your experience and your potential. Provide qualitative examples. I expanded my qualifications by taking this course and that one. This award came my way and along with that recognition. I increased productivity in my department through X,Y,Z initiatives.

 

Take it one step further and discuss how all these achievements, qualifications will benefit this company you are applying to. Imagine yourself already in the position and talk about what you can bring specifically to this job in this company.

 

Closing comments

Reiterate how interested you are in the job. Let them know when you are available for an interview. Thank them for their time and consideration and let them know you look forward to hearing from them.

 

Finish off with Sincerely, Regards, Best Regards and wait for the call for an interview!

Should You Work For A Large Company Or A Small One?

Should You Work For A Large Company Or A Small One?

Starting out in your career? Trying to decide if you should work for large company or a small one? Or maybe you’re in the process of switching jobs and you can’t decide which direction to take. There are pros and cons to both.

Team size

In a big company, you’re a small cog in a large machine. As be part of a large team you’ll be expected to do one thing every well. There will be a lot of people to get to know, and more of a cushion for your learning curve because others can cover your slack.

In a small company, you’ll be part of a much smaller team. You’ll probably expected to do 2 or 3 things very well, because there are just less people available to share the burden. The team environment is small, and more intimate. The work will, at first, likely be more of a challenge.

Compensation and benefits

A big pro of going with larger company is that they’re able to provide benefits packages for full time employees that smaller companies simply can’t afford.

In terms of pay, larger places can often afford higher salaries. But sometimes smaller ones have more competitive compensation because the money is shared between less pockets. So they can afford to pay everyone well.

Room for growth

The place where small companies really shine is their room for growth. In a large established place, your road to success is regimented and likely quite slow.

With an indie company, as the company grows, so do you. If you get in on the ground floor, your career can explode much faster than at an established place, but only if the company does.

Working for an indie company might be a little riskier but there is potential for big rewards as you grow with them.  It would might be safer to work in a larger, established location, but it would likely take longer to make your mark.