Looking for that ideal job after completing your degree? Don’t recall being prepped for what you need to be a legitimate threat to other candidates? Here are 10 killer tips to help you stand out from the crowd and land your dream job.
Make a LinkedIn account (and constantly update your profile)
LinkedIn is basically Facebook for business professionals. You wouldn’t leave information panels blank on your Facebook or Instagram, so why would you do so on the one social media platform that will benefit your future?
Add that time you volunteered within your community, specific courses you took at university (yes, including those cross-disciplinaries), and add all your skills that relate to your field. Remember to remain active by sharing and liking posts and connecting with everyone and anyone. Knowing the name of your interviewer beforehand and giving them a connection request (believe it or not) actually benefits you.
Write an employment proposal
You may tell yourself, “but they didn’t ask for one”. EXACTLY! By taking the initiative to write one makes your application even more memorable. You’ll be known as the applicant that physically left them something tangible to look at and read. An employment proposal should consist of the following:
- Company Overview
- SWOT Analysis
- Vacancy Profile
- Personal Profile
- Route to Market
- Summary and Conclusion
Keep the proposal brief, one page of information per heading is fine. Keep your proposal organised in a folder, and simply hand it to the interviewer letting them know they can read it in their own time.
Be proactive in your communication
The interview doesn’t start when you arrive at a company’s office and end when you walk out the door. Make the right impression when you are notified about an interview time and send a courtesy email saying thank you. Post-interview, send a follow-up email or give them a call the following day, saying it was a pleasure to be given the opportunity and that you can not wait to hear from them regarding the next stage.
Dress to impress
Cliché? Duh. Crucial to the interview process? Unfortunately, yes. In 2019, how you’re dressed is still a key factor of the interview process – it can be the difference between a successful and an unsuccessful interview.
Simply put, ladies keep doing you. No ones saying wear heels, but don’t show up in a dress you once wore to a club. Not to sound like a 90-year-old grandfather, but dress modest. (HINT: Pants are fine, jeans are not).
Fellas…WEAR A SUIT AND TIE! Don’t worry about how casual the employee dress code is, just remember you are not an employee yet, so don’t dress like you are.
Just remember: dress like you’re interviewing for the position of CEO.
Create a list of questions you can ask the interviewer
Simply put, people don’t want to ask a million follow up questions.
You can also spark unexpected conversations by asking the right questions – and this alone will make you stand out compared to the hundreds of other candidates applying. Interviewers want to see that you’re different, and not just another “sheep” following the herd. Be confident and ask suitable and interesting questions.
Interviews are not a one-sided affair. By asking your interviewers a few questions, it shows that you’re engaging with them and that you genuinely care about the role. A few questions you can ask are:
- Do you have any reservations towards me for the position?
- What is the route for progression?
- What made you want to work in the *blank* industry?
Don’t ask about your salary in the first interview
Money is a sensitive topic, and bringing it up in an interview can be awkward (and sometimes rude). Do not initiate conversation about your yearly salary – it gives the impression that the employment opportunity is not your core focus. Making the interviewer to think that you see the job as just a pay cheque is not the impression you want to give…
Research the company
The employment proposal mentioned earlier should be used as a study guide. Make it your source of information to help you understand what the company sells/provides, current projects, and possible joint ventures. You don’t want to be caught off-guard when they start asking you about how your work relates to their company.
Show up early, not on time
Show up 10-15 minutes early and freshen up. The last thing you want is to not find the office until 5 minutes before the interview. Give yourself enough time to arrive at the office, go to the bathroom, and look over your employment proposal. Also… JUST ACCEPT THE GLASS OF WATER THEY OFFER. You don’t want to have a dry mouth and have to ask for water halfway through your interview.
Answer questions with the appropriate amount of detail
Do not answer questions with one word. If you are asked where you went to University, be proactive and let them know your exact degree as well as your year of graduation. Being able to answer questions before they are asked shows signs of alertness and a proactive train of thought. Simply put, people don’t want to ask a million follow up questions.
Be confident in your resume (and yourself)
Don’t be cocky or egotistical – be proud of your resume and the experience you have. Stand by your achievements and let the interviewer know that you’re excited to add to those achievements. Be confident, speak clearly, and do yourself proud.
Looking for a job can be difficult and can sometimes feel impossible. Everyone deserves a chance to be placed in their field and prove themselves. These 10 tips paired with your unique drive and focus will place you in a league above the rest.
Do you have any tips for nailing a job interview? Let us know in the comments!
Featured Image Source: NBC’s The Office. NBC/Getty Images