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 10 Mistakes of First-time Job Hunters and How to Avoid Them

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Join date : 2013-07-08

PostSubject: 10 Mistakes of First-time Job Hunters and How to Avoid Them   Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:58 am


10 Mistakes of First-time Job Hunters and How to Avoid Them

Considering the current global economic trends, the retrenchment scenarios in many industries and the present unreliable world of employment, looking out for a job is quite a challenging task. So if you are in the final year of college and are keen to embark on your employment journey it would be advisable to be very well prepared. Job hunting-especially for first timers can turn out to be a nightmare if not systematically done.

Here are ten common mistakes that people who apply for their first job should necessarily try to avoid:

Not visiting career centers: Most universities have career centers. These assist students in being selected into companies from the campus itself. Avail of such services and seek professional help from the counselors. Once they are aware about what you’re looking for they will be in a better position to get you interviews to Companies listed in your field of interest.

Not figuring out your career path: At such an early time in life it is very rare to know what you would ultimately want to pursue and excel in. Hence, seek the guidance of career counselors. Take aptitude tests to figure out your core strengths. Attend seminars and informational interviews to help narrow down your industry focus.

Not creating an impressive curriculum vitae: In this rat race, it is necessary to stand apart from the crowd. Along with being the ace in the passing out litter, it is essential to be a cut above the already existing army of job applicants in the market. To achieve this you could seek professional assistance in creating an impressive resume. Nowadays, there are many specialists/personal branding experts in this field who can assist you to create a curriculum vitae that is conspicuous. Prepare a resume that highlights your knowledge and strengths in the prospective industry’s position. Avoid sending generic resumes as this reflects a casual approach.

Waiting to look for a job: Do not procrastinate and put off your job search until the last minute. Surfing the online job websites is an important step in finding a job. List out the opportunities available in your line of work and prioritize the employers you would like to work for. Post your resume to the selected organizations. Do not attempt to scatter your resume to umpteen organizations with the hope of getting called for an interview. It would be a herculean task to keep a track of these and also doesn’t reflect well on you as a candidate.

Not networking: For many first-timers, networking is one of the most dreaded aspects of job hunting. But research has shown that more than 60 percent of successful job searches are the result of networking. Instead of spending endless hours in front of the computer, go out and meet people. Putting across well-positioned questions will provide you with valuable information and advice. Though the golden rule of networking is not to ask for a job directly, it is an essential tool required to build a strong professional network for the future.

Lacking professionalism: Agreed this is your first job, but that doesn’t absolve you from doing your homework and prepping yourself adequately before the interview. If you want to create an impression on the interviewing panel members, study well about their Company, its objectives and the management. Sell yourself keeping in mind the Company’s mission and highlight your primary strengths that would help to add value to their business. Chart out your ‘if I am hired’ proposition and make them believe that you are the right candidate for the position.

Not keeping track of your achievements: Being humble is important but this is not the avenue to project that quality. It is important here to blow your own trumpet to attract attention towards you. Situations are common but achievements are unique. Make a list of all the awards, achievements and accolades you have garnered until date, however big or small, it may be. Recollect a particular situation, what you did and quantify the outcome or result. This method of thinking and presenting your resume falls in line with the competency-based interview style of questioning and will help you make an even better impression. Nothing in this category is insignificant, and your future employers need to know how good you are and that investing in you would be a profitable proposition for them. Being confident is the key here and do not shy away from highlighting all the feathers in your cap.

Lacking job-related skills: Nowadays, companies seek people who are specialists and not generalists. Learn about the industry-specific skills requirements and invest in training yourself for this. On a broader perspective, acquaint yourself with most of the skills required in a particular industry but master the one you would like to pursue as a career. This would give you an added advantage and help in positioning yourself much better.

Lacking experience through a job or internship: Nothing sells like experience. That is the bottom line in the job-seeking market. Having some sort of professional work experience before entering the work force arena would be an added advantage for you. If this means having to wait at tables or be an across-the-counter sales person or being a freelancer, go ahead and grab the opportunity. Try finding full/part-time jobs while completing your education. Project these experiences as bullet points in your resume and you have got yourself a sure shot eye-catcher.

Not getting the first impression right: Last but not the least, look the part. Save the causal jeans and T-shirt style for weekends. Now that you are keen to join the professional workforce, dress right. Get yourself some well-fitted corporate wear and groom yourself properly before any interview. Nothing puts an interviewer off more than a sloppy looking candidate. In this case, the first impression might end up creating a lasting one.

So put your best foot forward, follow these pointers, and you are ready to attack and find your dream job.

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