Searching for a job can be a scary thing — especially when you’re fresh out of college and lack considerable experience in the professional world. Here a few tips from SoftwareAdvice.com for the young hopefuls trying to land that first job out of college.
1. Clean up your social media accounts
To begin with what should be the most obvious, it’s important to make sure your online personality reflects a level of professionalism. Hiring managers will do their research on you before they meet you, and they certainly don’t want to see that you have poor grammar and inappropriate pictures polluting your page. So make sure you’re in control of your real first impression — your online impression.
2. Go after “foundational” roles
Much like it sounds, a “foundational” role lays the foundation for your career. It’s a job that will teach you what the professional world is all about and equip you with the skills you’ll need for every future job, as well. Tell a hiring manager that you are actively seeking this type of role, and they will be impressed with your career-mindedness.
3. Practice answering common interview questions
There are certain questions you can expect to hear in any interview. For instance, a hiring manager will almost always ask why you want the job. You should be prepared with a solid answer of how you can contribute to the company and why you are a good fit for the role they’re hiring for. Before heading into your interview, take some time to look at common interview questions, and plan out the things you feel are important for the hiring manager to know about you. Then, construct clear, concise answers to highlight those traits. You’ll come off as a polished and composed young professional, which hiring managers like.
4. Develop an “Elevator Pitch”
As a recent graduate, you probably don’t have a lot of relevant work experience. You do, however, have a personal story that includes learning experiences from which you gained valuable tools — tools hiring managers expect you to have. What you need to be able to do, though, is condense this information into what’s commonly referred to as an “elevator pitch,” and sell these traits.
An elevator pitch is simply a way to pitch yourself and your most relevant, useful traits in a short amount of time — or the time it takes to get from your starting floor to your destination. You have a short amount of time to convey who you are as a person in an interview, so make sure you get your pitch down. Be sure to stress your talents and energy in lieu of actual working experience.
5. Be Yourself
Obviously, a level of professionalism is required for an interview. It’s important that the hiring manager perceive you as someone who is serious about the job. That being said — don’t overdo it. They also want to know that you’re a real person, and that working with you would be an enjoyable experience. Don’t be afraid to show your personality.
6. Four more tips…
For more tips on how to prepare, check out the full article: “Nine Job-Seeking Tips for College Graduates.”