Advanced Tips for 2019 Job Search

Tip 1: Establish your career goals! Take this time to reflect on where you are now and where you want to go next. Having clear goals and objectives will get you there.

Tip 2: Update your resume! What have you accomplished in 2018? Review your year’s achievements and projects you’ve finished and include them in your resume.

Tip 3: Brush up on your interview skills! Whether you have an interview scheduled or not, you should always be able to answer The “Tell Me About Yourself” Interview Question. Review the most common interview questions so that you’ll always be ready whenever opportunities arise.

Tip 4: Polish up your social media profiles! Potential business partners or other key players in your industry may be searching for you right now. Social media can play a huge role in your reputation so keep it professional and build a strong online presence.

Tip 5: Activate your network! The people you meet can have a lasting effect on your career. Stay in touch with your previous colleagues and learn How to Network to create mutually beneficial relationships with new ones.

Questions Interviewers ask to test your personality.

What was the last new task or skill you learned, and how did you go about it?

Employers ask this question to evaluate how a candidate views their own professional development.

Answer with details on how you learn new skills. Emphasize that you’re curious and continually learning new things about your profession.

Tell me about a time that you did more than what was required on the job

Your interviewer wants to make sure that you’re committed to excelling.

Give an example of a time where you went above and beyond the call of duty. This will also help show that you care about the quality of your work.

If your best friend was sitting here, what would they say is the best part about being your friend?

The purpose of this question is to bring out a sense of honesty and candor in a candidate.

Learning about what makes an applicant a good friend allows employers to get a better feel for whether or not they would fit in with the company culture.

If you could change one thing about the way you approach challenges, what would it be?

This question puts candidates on the spot, and allows hiring managers to evaluate a candidate’s self-awareness and ability to admit there are some aspects of their professional life they would like to improve.

Since humility is an important quality to many employers, a response to this question is something they listen closely to.

December is the best time to look for a job in Seattle

Savvy job-seekers might know how to write resumes and cover letters, but few are aware of this surprising fact: Contrary to popular belief, December is actually the best time of year to look for work!

There are two compelling reasons why this is true–

#1 Competition levels drop dramatically. The majority of job-seekers figure that the holidays are a waste of time and make only marginal efforts to search for a new position. But their unfortunate mistake can turn into your big advantage because…

#2 Hiring takes off in the New Year. Although interviewing for full-time employees takes a dip in December, the months of January and February typically generate the strongest hiring period of the year. Organizations kick-off new projects and initiatives, budgets are put into place and additional staff is required to carry out the company’s plans.

Accordingly, if you take full advantage of the opportunities that the holidays have to offer, you may well find yourself as a sought after candidate–one who’s first in line to be interviewed in early January. To ensure you are making the most of this special time of year, here are three holiday practices you will want to adopt:

Practice the art of seasonal schmoozing. The holidays are filled with parties, gatherings, and community events. These are all prime opportunities to mix, mingle and share your story. Be certain, however, that you don’t dampen the festivities by trying too hard. Resist the temptation to deliver a rehearsed elevator speech unless you are attending a formal industry event where such introductions would be commonplace. Even then, make sure you judge the mood of the merrymakers before you come across as too stiff or businesslike.

At informal gatherings, a light touch is always best. When asked what you do, you can reply with a snappy one-liner that will pique your listeners’ interest. For example, a department store buyer used this playful response when asked about her career, “I shop with other people’s money.” (You can bet ears perked up with that one!) Once the buyer had the attention of her audience, she then continued with a lengthier description of her skills, experience and job search goals.

Reconnect with old contacts. Holiday cards and folksy letters are not only welcomed, they’re expected. Done correctly, they can be a great way of securing new leads and opportunities. After sharing the latest news about your family, you can mention your job search and add a few of the companies you are targeting. Then in a low-key manner, you can let your friends know that you’d appreciate any suggestions or contacts they might have.

You can also send holiday greetings to recruiters you’ve worked with in the past, reconnect and update them on your search. Recruiters are busy people and can easily forget candidates. So your greeting may well put you at the top of their minds in a favorable light. And, if you are very lucky, they might have the ideal job cross their desk just as your greeting appears in their inbox.

Network in new and innovative ways. Volunteering, seasonal hiring, and all sorts of opportunities present themselves for moving beyond your immediate circle of contacts. Pursue as many of these as you can that will comfortably allow you time for other holiday networking activities. You never know whom you might meet and where such opportunities may lead.

Most of all, remember that your goal is to take full advantage of the serendipity and good will that abounds in December. Join in the seasonal festivities, celebrate with your career goals in mind and anticipate that success may be only weeks away. You just might find yourself ringing in 2015 with a brand new job. And that’s a pretty great way to start off the New Year… with a big thanks to the holiday spirit!

Source: Mary Eileen Williams

Are you a mentor?

While mentorship does entail teaching and helping out your mentee, you don’t have to approach it as solely top-down. Your mentee can be a professional asset to you, the mentor, in a number of ways–from collaborating with you on a special project to connecting you to people at their company once they’ve landed their dream job (with help from their amazing mentor).

Too young or inexperienced to be a mentor, you say? There’s no such thing. A mentor doesn’t have to be a wise old person with a cane (although they can be).

All you need to be a great mentor is the desire to help someone fulfill their career potential.

Want to succeed in your career?

Become aware of your strengths and weaknesses

If you want to be successful, you need to know a lot about yourself and your performance. The better you know your skills and knowledge, but also your weaknesses and gaps, the more targeted you can work on yourself. Do so – and at regular intervals again and again – a strength and weakness analysis of your professional and personal skills. You should also ask other people for their opinion – good friends, family members and acquaintances. Listen carefully and do not feel hurt by criticism – you can only learn.

Continue your education, even across disciplines and in person

After finding out what strengths and weaknesses you have, you can do something specifically to build skills and improve vulnerabilities. Invest in your knowledge and skills. Read books, listen to cassette programs, attend classes and workshops. Educate yourself professionally and personally. Always be curious about other subjects and acquire useful specialized knowledge. To increase your value as an employee.

Organize your work as effectively as possible

To make a successful career, you should be able to organize yourself and your work as effectively and well as possible. This includes systematic time management, well-planned task organization and effective self-management. Define specific work objectives and check whether you achieve them through your measures and work steps. Also, try to simplify as many levels as possible. Avoid unnecessary handling. Delegate messages to others to get more time for the basics. Seek help if you are stuck with something alone. And look for successful people who manage their work.

How are your target companies advertising for available jobs?

Where do companies advertise?

  • Listing Jobs on Company Websites: Most larger companies, and many smaller companies, post available jobs on their company website. Job applicants can search for jobs, review job listings and apply for jobs online. Job seekers may be able to set up job search agents to notify them via email of new openings. Some companies schedule interviews online, as well.
  • Posting Jobs Online: Companies that are actively recruiting candidates will not only post jobs on their website but will also post jobs on job boards and other job sites. Jobs may be posted on general job boards like Monster and/or on niche sites like MediaBistro.
  • Using LinkedIn: Companies may post open positions on LinkedIn, the professional networking site. In addition, companies may search LinkedIn to find candidates to recruit. LinkedIn Groups are another venue that employers use to post jobs and find applicants.
  • Social Recruiting: Companies are increasingly using social recruiting to source candidates for employment on Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites, as well as to investigate applicants they are considering hiring. Companies may use Facebook apps to recruit or have a Facebook page dedicated to careers with the company. On Twitter, companies may tweet job listings and source candidates to recruit.

Resume Do’s and Don’ts

When you haven’t updated your resume in a while, it can be hard to know where to start. What experiences and accomplishments should you include for the jobs you’ve got your eye on? What new resume rules and trends should you be following? And seriously, one page or two?

Don’t Put Everything on There

Your resume should not have every work experience you’ve ever had listed on it. Think of your resume not as a comprehensive list of your career history, but as a marketing document selling you as the perfect person for the job. For each resume you send out, you’ll want to highlight only the accomplishments and skills that are most relevant to the job at hand (even if that means you don’t include all of your experience).

But Keep a Master List of All Jobs

Since you’ll want to be swapping different information in and out depending on the job you’re applying to, keep a resume master list on your computer where you keep any information you’ve ever included on a resume: old positions, bullet points tailored for different applications, special projects that only sometimes make sense to include. Then, when you’re crafting each resume, it’s just a matter of cutting and pasting relevant information together

Put the Best Stuff “Above the Fold”

In marketing speak, “above the fold” refers to what you see on the front half of a folded newspaper (or, in the digital age, before you scroll down on a website), but basically it’s your first impression of a document. In resume speak, it means you should make sure your best experiences and accomplishments are visible on the top third of your resume. This top section is what the hiring manager is going to see first—and what will serve as a hook for someone to keep on reading. So focus on putting your best, most relevant experiences first.

 

Wrong Answers to “Why Do You Want This Job?”

1. A flippant or meaningless answer.

“Because I really need money” [wink wink].

“Because, um, yeah, this seems like a great place to work.”

Not the response of a competent, committed candidate, right? A better answer would be to explain how the position will fit your skills and allow you to advance your career — a win-win for you and the employer.

2. A generic answer.

It’s not a good idea to memorize one answer and use it every place you apply. The hiring professional will recognize that it’s just pre-programmed interview-speak, and will have learned nothing about your suitability for the job. Since you are researching the company beforehand anyway (we certainly hope), take a couple of minutes to figure out why this specific position and/or employer is perfect for you.

3. A 10-minute dissertation.

OK, maybe not really 10 minutes, but do resist the tendency to babble on that happens to many of us when we’re nervous. Don’t list every little reason you’d like to work there, just the most important one or two. You especially don’t need to mention factors that only benefit you, not the company, such as its location close to your home.

As with any other interview question, the secret to a successful answer is to be prepared, and even more importantly, be yourself. That way, both you and the interviewer will know when you have truly found the right job.

3 Things you need from every job

A Safe and Supportive Environment

Let’s start with the basics. You’re more than worthy of feeling safe and supported in your office. You should be able to bring your authentic self (your authentic professional self, of course) into work and not feel worried or threatened when doing so.
Rest assured that your expectations in regards to feeling secure in your surroundings aren’t unreasonable or out of line. Nobody should have to head into the office day in and day out wondering who’s going to throw them under the bus or stab them in the back. You’re entitled to a basic sense of respect and a company culture that isn’t overflowing with toxicity.

A Boss Who’s Invested in Your Growth

When it comes to your career, your manager should be your greatest ally. They should be in the loop on your desires and plans for professional development and provide necessary support and guidance whenever they can.
If you feel like your supervisor is always undermining your accomplishments, offering criticisms that are in no way constructive, and is completely disinterested in your growth and advancement, know that you’re justified in wanting more.
Your boss doesn’t necessarily have to be your biggest cheerleader, but they should at least be in your corner.

An Appreciation for Your Contributions

There’s dignity in all work. Your job exists for a reason. Regardless of your specific role, you’re serving your company in some important way—whether you’re in the mail room or in the corner office.
That means you shouldn’t ever be made to feel worthless. You should pack up and head home every evening knowing that your contributions matter and are respected by the people that you work with.
No, you shouldn’t expect ice cream cakes and celebrations in your honor each and every week. But, there’s a big difference between that excessive level of recognition and simply feeling heard and valued for what you bring to the table.

5 way to keep engaged in your current job

Life is too precious to waste on things that you do not care about, you spend a lot of your physical and mental energy on your job, shouldn’t you be at least interested, if not passionate about what you are doing.

Here is 5 ways in which you can get that level of engagement back…

Know your “why.” This is fundamental and where you need to start. Why do you do what you do? Make sure you’re in a line of work that you find interesting, and then clearly identify why you’re doing it.

Set digital goals. Now that you know why you’re doing what you do, set up short-term and long-term goals to keep you engaged and on track! use digital tools and apps since they can give friendly reminders. Want to get promoted in 12 months? What are the steps you can take to get there? Get them on the calendar, and start working.

Pick up a new skill. Keep your brain sharp by learning something new. Look into training’s at work, or ask to go to a seminar or conference.  Select something that falls outside of your comfort zone but that is still relevant to your career. Your boss will love the added value you’re bringing to the team, while it won’t hurt to add an additional skill to your resume either.

Ask for feedback. If you aren’t getting the feedback you need, ask for it. A good manager will want to see that you’re interested in your career as well. Feedback can motivate you to perform better since you’ll feel more valued at work, and it’s a tool for continuous learning. Staying stagnant in your career most likely won’t keep you interested in anything more than a steady paycheck…which can work for a while (if you’re getting paid what you’re worth), but generally isn’t sustainable for career engagement.

Be mindful. Start each morning with a positive mantra. Then, watch what you say to yourself and others throughout the day. Avoid negative thoughts and comments about your job, and skip the office gossip. Stop taking everything so personally.