Alyson is back again with her vast knowledge as a Careers Advisor. This time, she came in to give us her 6 steps that will lead us to job search success!
Step 1: Lay the Foundation Before you start your hunt, there are some things that you need to outline. Write a mission statement and create a 5 year goal. Alyson said it was important to know what you are aiming for and what you see yourself doing in the future before applying to every single job out there. This will keep you focused on what you really want rather than what you think you want. Identifying the target companies that seem to line up with your goals will help you figure out which companies you may want to apply for.
Step 2: Identify Your Strengths To identify your strengths, it is important to know how to reflect on past experiences and you as a person. What comes naturally to you? What makes you feel energized? Alyson mentioned a helpful way to figure this out is by thinking about something that makes you lose track of time, or something where time flies faster because you enjoy what you are doing. You can also look back at previous job’s you’ve done well with and their corresponding job descriptions. Same for university papers and their course outlines.
If you are having trouble reflecting on yourself, you can always ask other people. Asking for feedback is a great tool which will not only help clarify what strengths you possess, but also areas where you could improve on.
Step 3: Conquer Your CV As Alyson has said in her previous bootcamp about CVs, in some cases they can be the deciding factor on whether someone will consider your application or not. She talks about what you can put on your CV, what words to avoid and every little tip that could make your CV that much better than it was! (More information on CVs in the previous CV101 blog post)
Step 4: Outsmart Job Boards Looking through job boards like Student Job Search or Seek can be a real time sink. You can find yourself looking through page after page for hours without even applying to a single job. This is why Alyson recommended to us to set a timer. Maybe just 30 minutes or 40 minutes and then just step away and try again another day. It may also be of use to create keyword alerts so that you are notified when a job that includes one of these keywords become available.
When applying, don’t disqualify yourself if you don’t have the required skills that the job description outlines. Think about what skills you have and how they can be considered transferable skills or if you can draw some equivalence.
Step 5: Perfect Your Pitch There are moments where you can find you have nothing to talk about with an employer when you first meet them. For these moments, it is important to know what to say and how you can make this conversation beneficial to you.
Alyson gave us a task to come up with an “elevator pitch” and practice telling it with a partner. This elevator pitch is a 2 minute or so recap of things like your CV, personality, and background. This pitch is supposed to be as if you are trying to make an impression on someone but you only have the time length of an elevator ride. This can help with your introduction to your conversations during events like meet and greets. Think about the 3 C’s: Clear, concise, and in control.
Step 6: Work Your Network Drawing mutual connections with people you know is a great way to form some interest when you talk to someone whether they are potential employers or not. It isn’t a necessity, but continually updating your personal LinkedIn profile could provide some opportunities for you when landing a job. Whether it’s on LinkedIn, other similar sites or just in person, make sure to keep in touch with people. Building your network can be of great value.