The road is rough right now for job seekers, but take heart. Somewhere out there, the right job is waiting for you. There’s a chair and a desk and a set of blank business cards ready to be printed with your name. You just need the patience and confidence it takes to find them. As you strike out on the trail every morning, keep these important job search tips in mind.
- Stay honest.
Stretching the truth is an act of desperation, and a strong temptation for job seekers who have been on the market for a while. But don’t do it. On the first day of your job search you may be brimming with optimism and the idea of lying on a resume can seem ridiculous. As time goes by, you may find yourself drawn into moods where small actions seem gloomy and futile. “If nobody reads my resume anyway,” you may think, “then what does it matter if I increased revenue at my last company by 10 percent or, say, 85 percent?”
But 10 percent is 10 percent. Trust us on this. You will be hired eventually, and when you are, you’ll be employed in a position you care about, working with people who respect you for the right reasons.
- Don’t assume.
Sometimes resumes are scanned by keyword readers and then automatically trashed. Sometimes they drift into a giant pile of identical applications, never to be seen again. Sometimes this happens. But sometimes it doesn’t. Your resume may be one of 9000, or it may be one of three. It may be auto-trashed, or it may be thoughtfully discussed by a team of intelligent people. If you don’t know, don’t assume. Treat each application with respect. Check your resume for typos 20 times, then check it again. Don’t be shy about making follow-up calls. Don’t be intimidated by the assumption that interviewers are too busy or too important to be bothered. All of your assumptions are wrong. So just take a deep breath and move forward.
- Get away from the computer and into the real world.
We can’t stress this one enough. Employers tend to prefer candidates who they’ve met or who come recommended by someone they know. Wouldn’t you, if you were in their shoes? So make appointments with people in your industry, give them copies of your resume, ask them for advice, and find out if there’s any way you can help them with something they need. No matter what you decide to talk about, just meet with them. Even a five minute phone call might help you make a valuable connection.
- Stay polite no matter what.
By polite, we mean 1. formal, 2. respectful, and 3. cheerful. Even if you’re inwardly dying of nervousness or desperation, don’t let it show. Stay collected. Check your clothing for loose threads before you leave the house, and check your emails and text messages for proper grammar before you click send. Don’t betray who you are, but remember that you’ll be judged based on a collection of impressions. So stand up straight, be proud of your accomplishments, and respect others the way you would like to be respected.
For more guidance with the job search process, contact CSS and arrange a meeting with our team of staffing and employment experts.