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Tag Archives: Interview Preparation

For those of you just getting started on your career, or for those who may be in a transitionary period, you may be running up against the “catch-22” of the job hunt. You know what I’m talking about, that annoying part of a job advertisement that says “entry level position,” followed directly by “three years of experience required.”

Here are a few tried-and-true ways to get the career ball rolling. Remember, the beginning of anyone’s career is often sluggish, so it’s imperative that you follow the Three P’s, and stay patient, persistent and positive.

1. Take Any Opportunity That Comes Your Way.

Even if it’s volunteer work or an unpaid internship, if it has anything to do with your field, say yes. You can’t afford to be too picky at first. Any experience looks great on a resume, but more importantly, any experience equips you with the confidence in yourself to meet your career goals.

2. Be Conscious of Your Personal Brand.

What are your strengths? Where do your interests lie? How do these apply to the field you’d like to break into? How will employers perceive you, and more importantly, how are you demonstrating your skills and strengths? These are questions that you must be able to answer in order to be a competitive prospective employee.

3. Network, network, network!

Do informational interviews. Follow up on leads. Keep your LinkedIn profile and your resume current. You never know if and when you’ll encounter the big breakthrough, so be ready at all times.

4. Don’t Be Discouraged.

Sometimes the market is just plain old tough tough, and that’s not your fault. All you can do is your best. Don’t let a bad economy make you feel like you’re not qualified. Staying proactive even in when jobs are scarce will show employers your resilience, which will help you land the job when the time comes.

5. Take Advantage of the Internet.

We live in a unique time: the information age. There are countless online resources at your disposal, including social media sites, job listings, blogs, and event notifications. Keep your eyes peeled and learn all you can.

Good luck!

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By Margaret Smith, Professional Life & Career Coach

Keep these 10 interview mistakes in mind when preparing for and arriving at your next interview and walk away feeling great about your performance and confident in your candidacy.

10 Common Interview Snafus

  1. Arriving late: This may seem redundant, but it still happens quite frequently—make sure it isn’t you!
  2. Talking too much: Avoid panicking and letting yourself ramble. It’s ok to allow for silence from time to time.
  3. Wearing inappropriate dress: Dress one step above the position you’re applying for, and research the dress code vibe ahead of time.
  4. Lacking energy or enthusiasm: If you’re prone to bottom out during a certain time of day, pack a high-protein snack such as a handful of almonds to eat during a break if necessary.
  5. Not preparing for questions: Sit down before your interview and expect the types of questions you’ll be asked.
  6. No planning your explanation of your résumé: Be prepared to defend each bullet point in your résumé during your interview with stories, skills gained, and explanations.
  7. Not asking powerful questions: It’s important to ask powerful questions during an interview to relay your competency and genuine interest in the position you’re applying for. Create these questions by researching the company, studying the job description, and considering what your questions will relay about you and your personal brand.
  8. Failing to prepare a close: What’s your last sentence going to be? What do you want your interviewer(s) to remember? How can you relay this message? Is there anything that you still want/need to know?
  9. Not offering a solo sheet: This is a one-page sheet titled with your name at the top that lists the five positive words that describe you with strong, inspiring explanations. Contact Me Today to Learn More about Solo Sheets
  10. Not asking for the job: Again, it seems redundant, but most of us are so frazzled by the end of an interview, that we forget to restate our interest in the position we’re applying for at the end of the interview.

For more useful tips on the job hunt, cover letters, and your career, contact UXL today!

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