How To Land Your Dream Job
We’ve all been there. College comes to an end, and after walking across the stage to receive our long-awaited diploma, we are left thinking: “now what”?.
Landing your dream job is not easy. And the truth is, you may have to endure a lot of mundane and mediocre jobs before getting hired at the place you want to call your “forever home”. However, that does not make the journey any less worthwhile. Sometimes, like with anything in life, we need to build our foundations or, almost literally, get our foot in the door somewhere. The key is: don’t give up. Don’t stop trying. With persistence and perseverance, you CAN and WILL get there. Here’s how.
Learn about the field you are interested in.
Do some research while on the job hunt. Learn everything you can about your dream industry by reading articles, flipping through books, and browsing websites. Study trends, learn the names of key players and figure out what is current. While your college or university degree may prepare you somewhat, it never hurts to do a little more digging, especially given that industries can change so rapidly. The key to nailing an interview is to be knowledgeable and well-informed. While submitting your application is important, so is having the awareness of what the field is all about. Don’t go into an interview blindly!
Now that we are in 2018, networking is more crucial than ever. It’s all about connections these days, and sometimes we need to break out from behind our phones and computer screens and actually… talk to people. Networking can take different forms. It can involve saying “yes” to a social opportunity with friends because you never know if you will meet a “friend of a friend” who is currently working in your desired field. Networking may also look like saying “yes” to a community event. Whether it’s a paint night or a mini-lecture series, grab one of your buddies or gal pals and immerse yourself in the community. And don’t be shy to introduce yourself to others! Talking with people in your community is a surefire way to make valuable connections.
Develop your CV.
There are plenty of free websites, guides, and services out there to help you develop your resume or CV. If you are a student, see if your college or university provides someone who can proofread your documents before you submit them. If you are a graduate, do a little surfing online for free guidelines and suggestions. Keep your CV simple and to the point, and please, have someone else proofread it. There is nothing more unprofessional than silly spelling or grammatical errors. Always highlight your best qualities, skills, and accomplishments, and don’t be shy about celebrating your successes. Show your future employer how you have contributed to past positions, and why you would be a valuable addition to their team. Additionally, make sure that the majority of what you list on your resume relates to the job you are applying for. This may involve making slight adjustments to your CV if you are sending it to multiple people.
Prepare for your interview.
Thanks to Google, and social media, we have access to an abundance of information. Maybe a little too much! Once you’ve landed that first interview, you need to prepare. ALWAYS take a look at the company’s website beforehand, and make sure their vision is in line with yours. Then, study. Study the names of the people who work there. (Saves you from remembering people’s names when you get introduced to them on interview day!). Study the company’s mission statement so that you can utilize some keywords during your interview. Learn about the company’s past, current, and future projects, and be prepared to ask questions about their work. Not only will this help you answer questions during your interview, it will also show that you have taken the time to inform yourself. Don’t forget to dress professionally!
Get your foot in the door.
Now, this may not be the advice you want to hear. Upon graduation, most of us want to jump right into the job of our dreams. However, that is not always possible. Many jobs these days require some kind of professional experience. If you were lucky enough to score a killer internship during college - amazing! Definitely, utilize that experience throughout the interview process. For those of you who graduate without experience, know that getting your foot in the door somewhere might just have to be the next step. Your first job right out of college may not encompass everything you are looking for and may involve tasks that you dislike. My advice to you is to stick it out. Try and maintain your (less desirable) position for at least a year, and then use everything you have learned to catapult yourself towards a new and more fulfilling position. Remember that great things take time, and just like Rome wasn’t built in a day, your career will take some time, too. Be persistent, perseverant, and ruthless in your desire to land the job of your dreams.
There you have it. The key points to remember are: do your research. Get your foot in the door. Make connections. And always, always dress the part.
Landing your dream job won’t be easy, but nothing worth having is, really. So take risks and persist, even in the face of rejection. (And when those moments of self-doubt creep in, remember that even the most successful people have faced some kind of adversity on their way to the top. Heck, even Walt Disney was fired for lack of imagination before he became a household name).