In the last decade the focus of life seems to be centered around social media and the internet. Shopping, working and social life revolves around tweeting, posting and search engines, but if you are looking for a job there are some skills that will never go out of style – and will never be replaced digitally. As ‘old fashioned’ as they seem, avoid them at your peril, these skills speak volumes about you and your ethics.
These 5 basic job hunting skills are simple but very effective at saying ‘I care about your job’ and help you through to the next stage.
1: Dress to Impress.
It doesn’t matter what industry you are in – if you don’t dress to impress you’ll be remembered for all the wrong reasons. The clothes you wear to wander round the shops or mow the lawn are great for doing the chores but not for asking for a job. Well dressed and groomed doesn’t mean a suit and tie necessarily, but smart casual clothes and a clean appearance are needed. Bear in mind that most working environments are scent free when it comes to personal products, so be sensitive to their needs.
Don’t forget a firm handshake, plenty of eye contact and smile also dress to impress, so make sure you practice.
2: Don’t be a slave to technology.
One of the biggest assumptions that you can make is that your spell checker will catch all your mistakes – Wrong! Let me show you from some of the resumes I have seen:
One started, ‘Dear Sir or Madman’.
Another boasted, ‘Instrumental in ruining an entire operation for a Midwest chain store.’
One informed, ‘I am fluent in English and spinach’.
This one I couldn’t resist: ‘Directed $25 million anal shipping and receiving operations.’
Need I say more?
Copying and pasting also is something to be wary of. Changing a skill title then pasting the same description from earlier will not fool a recruiter. Make it perfect, make it personal.
Bullet points work well in resume. A recruiter wants to see at a glance what value you have for the position. They want to know what impact you had in your last job, your capability and the results you achieved. IF they have 30 resumes to go through your more likely to be successful if you have concise, surmised information that tells them all they need quickly.
Your cover letter and your resume need to flow and well articulate who you are and what you have done. Random scraps of information say nothing – except you can’t produce a formal, informative document – or worse, you don’t care.
5: Follow up
The follow up is a big issue for a recruiter. They know if you’re motivated and skilled enough – you’ll call. They also know a follow up call means you understand that securing a job is about working effectively with a recruiter and building a relationship. Even an email will help build a bridge and open up communication to further your application.
Take the time to make sure you avoid these very easy pit falls and show the recruiter that the quality of your work is important to you, as well the opportunity with their firm. If you don’t – you might as well try and learn to speak fluent spinach.