I found a second job within two weeks of dropping most of my college classes. It’s a solid part-time job; a three month contract with possibility of extension if this works out for everyone. Most people I know who are looking for jobs are still looking for jobs – and it’s been months for them. There’s various reasons for this. Their circumstances were different and I had something that gave me a bit of a head start. But what exactly made me different?
Many people underestimate this, but networking is massively important especially in the millennial generation. It’s been said time and again that “It’s not what you know, but who you know”. Fortunately I both knew someone and had good timing – my father’s team was looking for a marketing assistant just as I arrived back from Germany. The team interviewed me, and I secured my position. I would never have heard about the opportunity if my father hadn’t mentioned it.
My younger brother is also looking for a job and through sheer happenstance, my cousin’s workplace was looking for an entry-level programmer/IT person. Brother submitted his resume and is now waiting to hear back from the company. There’s a good chance he’ll reach the interviewing stage with them.
Family is part of your network, but certainly not all. Even with a large extended family, you cannot rely on them to know of job opportunities, though they may be good resources. Reach out to local business people. Make sure your friends are aware that you’re looking. If you can, go to a local networking event. You can find groups on Meetup.
Lesson: Make the most of who you know now and meet more people in the same field as you.
Maximize That Resume
No job experience? No problem! Played sports in high school? Well guess what, you participated in team building exercises and developed leadership skills. Volunteered at a daycare or babysat? You have excellent multi-tasking skills and can prioritize problems quickly. Also I bet you have developed on-the-spot creative solutions for problems. It’s all about how you look at it. Play up your strengths, whatever they may be. Use your extracurriculars to discuss skills that you can use in the work force.
If you have job experience it’s even easier. You still need to play up the skills that make the most sense for your field. If you were a handyman now looking for a desk job, recruiters probably don’t care that you know how to use various carpentry tools. They’ll love that you can problem solve quickly and creatively though!
Lesson: make sure your resume reflects the best you for your job. The language you use is everything.
The BIG Reason
Everything I discussed in this post helped me find my second job. Without the first job from my father, I would have no experience in an office administration position. If I hadn’t made my resume the best reflection of my professional self, I would not have had 3 interviews in two weeks. (Granted one of the three was with a multi-level marketing company.)
However, there was ONE big reason I got hired. My new boss expressly stated it to me when she called me back: “We like the way you follow up. We would like to hire you.”
It’s advice I’d heard repeatedly, but finally I have experience to back it up. The best road to a job is one that you tread again and again. Show the company that you want to work for them by introducing yourself to managers and following up on your application. When you give them a call or a personal visit be sure to express your interest and excitement for the chance to work with them.
Lesson: Don’t lose hope. Follow up.