Whether you're job hunting for the first time or for your next job, conducting a job search is one of the toughest 'jobs' in the world. For any job search, there are three basic steps you need to take in order to be successful.
You might be surprised to learn that hundreds of job seekers every day overlook these basic steps. In other words, you can do just a few things really well, and outshine most other job seekers.
Begin by deciding on the type of job you really want. Get very clear and specific about the kind of work you want to find. You're best off when you know exactly what it is that you want to do, and you're also most likely to get the job you're dreaming of.
Even if you have to take something in the meantime to make ends meet, choose one that's on the way to your ultimate dream job. You will be happier, and your work quality will reflect that. Quality employers are attracted to employees who are motivated by personal goals, even though they know you might eventually be moving on.
Your next step, after deciding on what you would really like to do, is creating a resume that reflects your strengths. Remember, the purpose of a resume is to get you an interview where you can sell yourself and get the job.
Resume services can cost anywhere from $150 to $1,000, depending on the kind of job you are looking for. Consider the return on investment when you think about that cost. If your $1,000 resume leads you to a job paying $125,000 a year, perhaps you'd consider that was a reasonable expense.
Be sure to find a reputable resume writer, and the best way is through referrals from friends. You can look for a provider who is a member of a professional association, like the Professional Association of Resume Writers (P.A.R.W.), or is a certified career counselor.
These professionals agree to abide by a code of ethics, making it more likely that you will receive quality services. Or, choose a provider who is involved with a company like Square Trade, which offers dispute resolution as well as other services.
Finally, you have the chance to really shine in your interview by being thoroughly prepared. Research the company and the job you are applying for, and you will be able to speak intelligently with the interviewers.
Of course, you need to dress for success, because the first impression truly is important. Within a few seconds, a prospective employer will know whether they want to learn more about you, and that initial decision is based almost entirely upon appearance: dress and body language.
And be sure to extend your courtesy to the secretary or assistant who scheduled the interview and greeted you. First impressions with everyone count! Even if the assistant doesn't play an official role in the interview, you can be sure that their comments will be taken into consideration in the hiring process.
As I said earlier, following these few basic steps can put you ahead of the pack. Knowing exactly what you want is the important first step. Next, prepare a resume, marketing the advantage to the employer of having *you* on the job. Finally, close the deal by being well-prepared for the interview: knowledgeable about the company and dressed for success.
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Lila Norden combines 14 years experience in education and counseling to offer valuable information, helping you make decisions about your education and career. Visit the web site FLS Job for additional articles and resources.
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