Job seekers everywhere are experiencing serious problems landing a job. The reasons are many and very clear to some, but for others the reasons are not so obvious, because of the lack of knowledge it takes to be competitive with people who know how to succeed in today’s job market. This article outlines the imperative steps a job seeker must take to market themselves properly and adequately, so they too can become competitive in today’s job market.
Tip: “Learning is the foundation for success in life. Always be happy about your educational achievements, but never stop learning. Always demand more, achieve more and take beneficial criticism, learn from it and you will get the most out of life.”
Step one – Education
If you read the above tip, then I guess you already know what I am going to talk about next. Yes, job seekers must evaluate and take a good hard look at their current education level. It’s a fact that a person with a high school diploma may get a job, but they seriously limit their employment opportunities and life time earning potential. Additionally, and even worse, a person without a high school diploma or General Education Diploma (G.E.D) in this day and age can pretty much, in most instances forget getting a decent good paying job, period. Why, because they are getting beat out by their competition, by those smart individuals that followed through with high school and achieved their diploma. I know this sounds pretty harsh, but this is reality today. There is good news; however, go back to school! Yes, start learning again, and go back to school. Take all of the G.E.D preparation exams available to you, then take the final examination and achieve your General Education Diploma. This will show all available potential employers that you too possess the ability to follow through in life and they will notice that you could very well become a valuable asset to their company as well. Step one accomplished, great job!
Now on to step two – Self Presentation
Because I work in a type of center that assists individuals with their job seeking efforts, I have noticed that job seekers have really put their self presentation skills aside; seemingly, giving it a back seat to their employment seeking checklist if you will. Or, in my opinion, they simply do not know how and have never learned how to present themselves at a job interview when they are in front of potential employers. Let me start by saying this, no matter what type of job you are applying to, the self presentation of you and your application is a vital part to landing a job.
Applications should be written and/or typed neatly and formatted without punctuation errors, cross outs, scribbles, white out and must be filled out in its entirety.
Tip: “Attention to all the details on an application will get potential employers attention.”
Tip: “When gathering applications, request more then one, so if you happen to “mess up” start over on a new one.”
Tip: “Take the guess work out of filling out applications. Make it easier on yourself and have all your references, telephone numbers and addresses and any other information that you may need consolidated on a separate sheet of paper.”
Self presentation also includes the clothing worn to a job interview. As a rule of thumb, it is always better to be dressed in attire that is considered as business or business casual, no matter what job you are applying to.
For men: a clean, freshly ironed, button down dress shirt with a collar, preferably white or light blue, a tie along with clean and freshly pressed dress slacks, a matching dress belt, and dress shoes with matching dress socks will most of the time be considered adequate attire for a job interview. Adding a sport coat or suit coat wouldn’t be a bad choice, especially when seeking a job in the cold winter months.
For females: Business or business casual attire is considered as a clean, freshly ironed, button down shirt with a collar, a knee length skirt with no to minimal slit or a freshly ironed pair of dress slacks, natural colored hosiery, if preferred, and a nice pair of dress flats or pumps. A dress or sports jacket can also accent a females business attire, especially during the colder months.
For both male and females: Bring an umbrella along with you to the interview, if it’s raining and for those sudden rains during the rainy season. Jewelry should be worn in a minimalistic fashion, especially, if the job you are applying to has a working environment that prohibits the wearing of jewelry due to safety concerns. Never be caught off guard with the jewelry you wear, do your homework and ask someone that works there first about their jewelry policy before you interview. Wearing of perfume, cologne and after shave is discouraged and in most cases must not be worn when interviewing. This is due to sensitive noses and allergy prone people in the work place, the smell can also be offensive to some. The smell of cigarette smoke is also offensive to non smokers. If you smoke cigarettes, do not smoke a cigarette right before a job interview, because non smokers can smell you coming and the smell could impact your interview negatively. It is always better to put a mint in your mouth and have it chewed up before an interview, rather then smelling like an ash dirty tray.
And finally, but not lastly, never be late to a job interview. If you miss your scheduled time to interview, no matter what the excuse, you have already lost out to someone else and you will not be considered for the position.
A job seeker must always turn on a positive attitude and smile during a job interview. Take an optimistic approach to every question that is presented during the interview. Never talk negatively about a past employer, big mistake.
More job seekers interview tips:
Tip: “Again, never be late to an interview and you know why.”
Tip: “Speak clearly and concisely when answering questions.”
Tip: “Look directly at the interviewer when they are talking to you and when you are answering them.”
Tip: “Keep calm, sit upright in your chair; do not cross your legs and do not fidget during an interview.”
I would like to conclude by saying that, searching for a job is a hard process in and of it self but if you apply these simple to follow steps and tips; the chances of landing that great job will increase and will definitely put you ahead above the rest.