5 Tips For Landing Your First Full-Time Job

It's that time of year...Congrats to the Class of 2018! If you've already landed your first job, awesome! If not, don't sweat it. Here are my top 5 tips for landing your first gig.

1. build your confidence

The first step to approaching any job search is gaining your confidence. Review your purpose and ask yourself these questions:

  • Which industry do I want to work in?

  • Am I willing to relocate? If so, where?

  • What are my strengths? Weaknesses?

  • What experience do I have that qualifies me for the position?

  • Who is in my network that I can leverage?

  • What are my compensation goals?

Being prepared with a clear mind and vision will save you time in your search and boost your confidence!

2 . don't apply to every position you see

Get specific. Only apply to positions that you can actually see yourself accepting and are seriously qualified for. The job application process is a tiring one, so don't stress yourself out more than needed. Plus, if you apply to positions that you aren't qualified for, you'll weigh yourself down when you receive a quick rejection. Putting your time toward opportunities with promise will bring confidence, hope, and excitement to your search. Telling the company why you are pursuing their open opportunity will be much more impactful.

3. bring your resume to life

If recruiters had a number for how many 12 point, Times New Roman font resumes they see, it would be way too high. Your resume is your foot in the door with the company you are interested in. Give them something more than text. Maybe it's a creative design, a splash of color, or adding your professional headshot to the page. Every industry is different, so do some research to see what will resonate well. Your experience is what makes you qualified, but your personality and ethic is what tells the company if you are a potential fit.

4. interview necessities

Between video, phone, and in-person interviews, you can get easily overwhelmed. Here's what you need to do to make sure you nail the interview:

  • Bring copies of your resume: make sure you have enough for everyone interviewing you (and one for yourself to glance over!)

  • Arrive early: 15 minutes at the minimum!

  • Smile: whether you're in-person or on the phone, a smile allows the interviewer to see (and hear!) your confidence, positivity, and professionalism.

  • Look professional: it takes roughly 7 seconds for someone to make a first impression of you. Even if the workplace is casual, you can never be overdressed. A classic navy blazer is always a must.

  • Come prepared with examples: most interviewers will ask behavioral questions. Come prepared with a few stories about how you face ambiguity, collaboration, and leadership.

  • Remember, you are interviewing them too: ask questions! You are also making sure the company is a good fit. However, avoid asking about compensation or benefits. At the end of the interview, reinstate your interest and ask about next steps in the process.

  • Thank you: a personal thank you note after the interview leaves a lasting impression. Be sure to receive the interviewer's business card and follow up within 24 hours.

5. patience is a virtue

Sometimes, the interview process can be lengthy. While it's definitely frustrating, patience is so important! If you have yet to hear back from the company 2 weeks after interviewing (and sending your thank you note), it is ok to reach out for an update. Don't stress yourself out too much in waiting, it will only drive you crazy! In the meantime, keep up with your other open opportunities to make sure you are right on track.

bonus tip :

Carefully Review Your Offer Before Accepting

Congrats! You got an offer! Before you get too excited, review what the company is offering you. This includes reviewing the benefits and compensation.

As far as compensation, use tools like LinkedIn Salary or Glassdoor to see if your offer matches what other companies are offering for the same role + experience you have. 

I want to know! What industry are you going into? Did you land your first gig yet? Share your other tips and tricks in the comments below!

Stamped on 5/16/2018 by The Letter Bea