CareerFuel’s Chief Sales Officer, John Lunghi, is from the media world and thanks to his career stripes and relationships, we have met with several of the top sales executives from today’s major media companies. While talking about how our new job board, The Job Place, can help them use media to attract the best talent, they shared their experiences in hiring. Their observations were incredibly consistent and drive home the point that just doing the basics can differentiate you from the crowd. Each executive talked about how ill prepared job candidates– often new college graduates– are for their interviews.
If you are young and want to know what the secrets to get a job are, read on…
Make your job pursuit HLNs. Tell everyone you know that you are looking, and have your parents do the same. Because here’s the secret: jobs are frequently never posted. Companies often hire through word of mouth. The relative, neighbor, softball parent or favorite waiter mentions to these professionals that their son or daughter is graduating and looking for a job. The resume is sent in, interviews follow and if they pass muster (see list below), many do indeed land a job. This isn’t payback or nepotism. It is filling a need informally without sifting through thousands of resumes.
Copy the Weather Channel during a hurricane and repeat the same story. Keep telling people that you are looking– new positions open up during the year when last year’s graduates (or the year) before get promoted. This can just as easily happen in November as it can in June. Don’t give up because timing can be everything.
Pretend you are an MSNBC reporter. If you are interviewing with A&E, watch their cable channel, become familiar with their shows. See what’s on their Facebook page and Twitter channel. Are they getting any traction on Tumblr or Pinterest? Candidates who say they didn’t look at the channel, visit the website, try the product, etc. are shown the door, as they should be. It’s like doing a story on an election without reviewing the poll results or taking a test without studying. Don’t do it.
Dress like you are going to be on Oprah. Before you open your mouth, the interviewer is studying you. If your shoes are scuffed, your pants are frayed, or your shirt is stained, how can they trust that you will make a good impression with their clients? Make your wardrobe be your bling.
Imagine you are at bat on an MLBN playoff game. Look at the pitcher and see where he’s going with the ball. Thanks to smartphones, our head always seem to be pointing at our feet. Somehow the practice of looking at people while talking to them has gone the way of fax machines. Practice making eye contact with mock interviews ahead of time to ensure that you automatically look people in the eye. Then you can focus your attention on delivering the best answers as you hopefully turn the interview into a conversation.
Create a Hallmark moment. Send a thank you note. Personalize it so that the manager knows it isn’t the same one you sent to everyone else. And reinforce why you are the only candidate they should consider.
When trying to find work, the power is in your hands. Good luck and tell us about your job search in the comment section below!
photo credit: Jen SFO-BCN via photopin cc