HR Nugget – Getting a Job is Hard Work

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Getting a Job is Hard Work

Getting a Job is Hard Work Many people who apply for jobs but don’t get them assume there was some external force acting against them; they think the interviewer didn’t like them, or that they were over-qualified. That may be true in some cases, but more often than not it’s down to one of the following 4 pitfalls that are so easy to avoid.

1. Your CV needs work Over 90% of CVs are not up to scratch. Too wordy, too boring, too untidy, or just too many errors. People can still get jobs with poor CVs, but why not make it world class? All the resources to do this are at your disposal. You can ask for as much help as possible, but it takes time, hard work and application. If I could give you one piece of advice, above and beyond having no spelling mistakes, it would be to tell them what you do well rather than just what you do. As the reader of a CV, all I need to know is if you are good, not how much you’ve done.

2. You need to do the work Sending a CV to a company or a recruitment agency saying: “here is my CV, can you find me a job?” just will not work. If you are not directly applying for a specific job, your CV could easily get lost in the crowd. Know what you want to do; if you don’t, get career guidance before you look for a job. Apply for specific jobs relevant to what you want and then follow up with a phone call. No one can work harder in getting you a job than you. Own as much of the process as you can. On top of this, realise that over 50% of jobs are not advertised so network with friends and colleagues to try and hear about opportunities.

3. No interview preparation Most people don’t like interviews but that is no excuse for not practicing. Have you mastered anything without planning and practice? Most of the questions can be predicted – ‘talk me through your cv’, ‘what are your strengths and weaknesses?’, ‘how would others describe you?’, ‘why do you want to work here?’, ‘do you have any questions for us?’. Prepare, not just to yourself but in front of a mirror, or recording yourself on your phone. Practice helps enormously, but most people don’t want to put in the time and effort.

4. Attitude and enthusiasm We all like enthusiastic people, we are even more likely to forgive them more and give them a second chance. Companies also love people who come across as motivated and enthusiastic about the job. No matter how you feel at the beginning of the day, make sure you go into the interview with a positive frame of mind. You would be amazed how quickly you can do this. For some people it can be thinking of a great memory, a son or daughter, or a picture they have on their wall. For others it’s exercise or a beach walk – but do whatever you need to do to ensure that when you walk into that room you are at your best.

Getting a job is hard work. Put in the time and effort and do everything you can to get that job, no matter what gets in your way. If you need help, contact Mary