Job Hunting Tips for StudentsBy Sj.Cliff
When you are a student, you are in both a good and bad position when hunting for jobs.
First of all, your stock is high, you’re at university or you’ve just finished, and all sorts of blue chip employers will be after your services. The drawback is that you’re not overly confident at what you can and can’t do just yet; you’re still very much finding your way.
Get some advice from knowledgeable job sites and avoid some of the often overlooked scenarios, and follow this definitive guide to teach you the most practical and non-clichéd tips for clinching that big interview:
Confidence isn’t about being brash or overly talkative. It’s about knowing what you can offer and giving the impression that you’re more than capable of doing the job. Don’t be intimidated by business lingo that you don’t understand – most people are perplexed by the terminology involved in certain business sectors. You’re there to sell yourself so don’t be ashamed of highlighting what you’re good at.
Make small-talk with the interviewer when you meet, showing that you can be personable. Don’t delve into life’s big questions; just discuss the weather or how nice the office seems.
Know your CV
You will be asked to guide the interviewer through your CV. Try to present the skills and qualities you’ve learned from each job as succinctly as you can; remember if it’s a big company they’ll often use a points based system, where they’ll be writing down every point scoring example you cite. Smaller companies often have more leeway in this department and may be more subjective.
Assess the company you’re applying to
Big companies often like rounded personalities for lifelong careers, whereas small companies may tend towards people that can perform and be productive straight away. With this in mind, remember that all of your answers to the interviewer’s questions needn’t be work related; personal goals and a proven interest in the arts are often highly valued by decent employers. An understanding of music will always demonstrate that you can grasp complicated concepts, and literature will always denote intelligence – but as ever, provide examples.
Ask the right questions
Ask questions, yes, but they have to be the right ones. ‘What are my hours?’, ‘How much holiday do I get?’ or ‘How much do I get paid’ are all unlikely to impress a prospective employer.
Show an interest in the company’s line of work. They don’t want to employ a robot, who’ll mindlessly process tasks, they want a thinking member of the team to question strategies and contribute ideas. Talk about the wider implications of the business which you can learn about on the net, thereby demonstrating an awareness of the industry and a good mind.
Think of a weakness which isn’t a cliché
‘What weaknesses do you have?’ is a challenge by the employer to demonstrate your own self-awareness. Most interviewers will have a thousand candidates saying that they’re “a perfectionist”, but this is lazy. Be clever, and think of something that won’t damage your chances, but will demonstrate self-awareness.