Debra Ann Matthews of Let Me Write It For You: Job-Winning Resumes and Career Services offers the following advice for new grads:
- Research 3 to 5 ideal jobs that interest you. See the Occupational Outlook Handbook for clarification on the types of things that will generally are required in that position, including daily tasks, salary, growth for industry.
- Register with your state's local job search site. These can generally be found by typing in the name of your state dot gov . For instance, Tennessee.gov or SC.gov, then search for employment. These sites will also give you the name, address, and phone number of your local one stop career centers. Go to the local one stop and take any assessments and note any upcoming job fairs. These may include typing tests, entrance exams, work keys tests, etc. Ask questions to the career counselors about entrance exams required to apply for your positions of interest.
- Be sure to upload your resume, cover letter and supporting documents to these sites. Be sure that you resume has as its focus keywords, key achievements and a unique set of values associated with your ideal profession.
- Register with your schools career services center. Take advantage of interview classes, networking events, alumni mixes, etc to learn more about the world of work.
- Develop your targeted LinkedIn profile @ www.linkedin.com. Change the last part of the url from xi@##($) to your first and last name. So that your linkedinprofile url will read like this: www.linkedin.com/in/yourfirstnameyourlastname. Begin to make connections with company representatives, regional professionals in your career area of interest and join career related groups. Ideally, you want to have between 100 and 500 connections. To learn more about how linkedin can benefit you, see Jason Alba’s so you’re linked in, now what via http://imonlinkedinnowwhat.com/dvd/.
- Check your business attire for the day. Be sure to dress one stop above the position that you seek. Ladies can be safe with a white shirt and dark skirt or loose fitting pants with small coordinating jewelry. Men can be safe with pressed dress up slacks and a nice white shirt and tie. Remember, you will never get a second chance to make a first impression.
- Revise your resume. Be sure that every sentence, phrase and statement on it reflects your brand (your profession), your achievements and your accomplishments mixed with relevant training, certifications and skills. Share your resume with your list of references for good measure.
- Be unique and if you really want to shine, bring a set of networking business cards.
- Practice your 30 second elevator speech. I am _ who _. I seek to help companies with _. My passion is to _. Keep in mind that this speech should reflect your abilities to help the company. The old “I want a job where I can grow” is not the ideal elevator speech to focus for your 30 second elevator speech.
- Learn how to interview with the end in mind. There are several different types of interview questions from behaviorial to situational. Practice answering each type of question and brush up on sharing your best stories that demonstrate your ability to fit in, get along with others, solve problem strategically and work independently.
- Finally join a job club. Working with like minded job seekers, keeps you motivated and helps ease the anxiety of transitioning.
Debra Ann Matthews of Let Me Write It For You: Job-Winning Resumes and Career Services helps new grads with job winning resumes, cover letters and career coaching services. Debra Ann can be reached @ www.linkedin.com/in/letmewriteit4u or via FB @ www.facebook.com/letmewriteit4u or by calling 931.269.WR1T (9718).