So many of you may already know, but I got a job, not just a job, a great job! I am very lucky and I know it! Maybe one of these days I can share with you where but for now I want to keep that to myself.
It took a while (just over a year) and I used every trick in my bag, and I got a pretty big bag, 30 years experience working (I started very young) and I used to help people learn how to interview when I was a vocational instructor; but things have really changed.
First of course these days you apply online, doesn’t matter if its a Fortune 500 company or McD’s its online, and probably through a search engine like Indeed.com (my fav) or TheLadders.com. Find one that you like, that have jobs that meet your needs and skills and use it everyday. I did it every morning then worked on my business in the afternoon. So if you have been applying for a while without results step back for a moment. Look at your resume, is it a laundry list? Does it reflect you or just where you went to work everyday for the last so many years? Does it say something different then an application (which you always fill out when you apply online, so why repeat it)? If it doesn’t already reflect your accomplishments then its time to change it. Use things like these, ‘Worked with State officials to create an accredited curriculum; Successfully managed a multi-million dollar apartment complex while maintaining USDA-RD standards of occupancy; Was promoted from receptionist to head of Member Services within 6 months of working for the company; Able to maintain a 3.5 GPA while working full-time, and raising 3 children”. Don’t be afraid to use that skill, its a big accomplishment to be a mom and work and attend school or just have a life, maybe you ran a blog at the same time, or volunteered. Use that, remember most personnel managers are women (yea for us) and they understand and appreciate that you have the ability to multitask and balance your life, shows you can handle it.
Second your cover letter, make it personal to each job you are applying for. Find the name of that manager and use it. Look at what they want to tell them how you fit that, how you did it before and how successful you were at it. Tell them what paper can’t, hardworking, creative, driven, organized, friendly. Sell yourself, ain’t nobody else gonna do it!
Third… Network, Network, Network… most of the people I know who have gotten a job have been recommended by someone they know who already works there. Talk to family members, friends, co-workers, everyone; reach out and ask.
Next the interview. Dress the part. Please. I cannot tell you how many people I have seen in jeans, tees, hats, sneakers, gym wear, white shirts and black bras and mini skirts. Yes I said mini skirts! I have really had to hold myself back from just grabbing someone and yelling “do you really want a job?” I swear my momma would be rolling over in her grave if I dressed like that! Also for your interview practice, by yourself or with a helper, but practice makes perfect. You need to be able to answer those questions in a clear, concise manner, no ahhhs or ummms, no blank outs allowed! I used to record my students in a mock interview and then let them see themselves and it really helped. Try it you might see something you have been missing.
Finally don’t give up! I don’t know how many times I was ready to throw in the towel but my cheerleaders (BF & BFF) kept me going, encouraging me everyday. So if you don’t have any cheerleaders on your sidelines-find some-no negative Nancy‘s allowed. Without them I would probably be working some pitiful dead end job, miserable and with a bad attitude, but they kept at it, pushing, encouraging and I got it, the exact job I said I would get when I moved to the Fresno area.
I feel your pain and frustration but don’t give up just step back, reassess, rethink and then GO GET ‘EM!
Here are some excellent additional resources for you to use http://www.wikihow.com/Get-a-Job, http://www.ehow.com/how_15161_job.html, http://ezinearticles.com/?How-to-Land-a-Job,-Part-1:-The-Resume&id=6374534, http://www.ehow.com/how_2133376_present-well-job-interview.html
Good Luck Y’all