Monday, August 22, 2016

List: Ten important things to do before applying for a new job.

I recently went on a fabulous dinner date with my baby cousin.  It turns out that my baby cousin is no longer a baby.  We were celebrating my birthday and the start of her career at a huge accounting firm.  Our dinner date was soon consumed with sparkling sake and adult conversation.  One big topic of talk was how she landed this awesome role straight out of college.  No worries, ladies and gentlemen!  I’ll share her tips to success with you!

stop and do these things BEFORE submitting a job application

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What to do before applying for a new job.

1.  Get yourself organized.
Keep your important documents and information filed in a designated and safe place.  This file should be filled with copies of your resume, certificates, recommendation letters, copies of identification (license, social security card, & birth certificate), and diplomas.

Idea:  Invest in a fire proof box like this one to keep under lock and key.  This should house all of your important documents like the ones mentioned above.  Keeping a box like this keeps you organized and protected just in case there ever is an unthinkable disaster.

2.  Invest in a portfolio book.
Keep a portfolio book handy and filled with pens, paper, resumes, and other necessities.  Walking into an interview with this leaves you looking prepared, responsible, and professional.

Idea:  I really like a padfolio like this one because it's extra useful.  It has a pad for writing, a folder for storage, a place to keep your phone, a business card holder, a spot for your ear buds, and so much more.  This is the cheapest investment you'll ever make, especially since you'll use it even after you land your dream job.

3.  Clean up your social media.
Browse through your social media feeds and delete any unprofessional pictures or posts.  I never believed employers actually looked until the time an interview began with listing our mutual friends.  Now that I'm a hiring manager, I do the same quick search to see what pops up on social media.  Keep your pages private and your extra crazy nights off the web.

4.  Google your name for a virtual clean up.
You'll be surprised what will pop up when you Google your name.  Delete all undesirable discoveries.  I recently did this and had a hard time deleting an ancient Twitter account.  I had literally had to beg the Twitter Gods for it to go away.  Start this process early since it's not always that easy to accomplish.

5.  Invest in a blazer.
Whether it's a fun colored blazer or plain black one, it's a must for any interview.  I love my coral blazer because it helps me stand out, radiates my personality, all while it still shows that I mean business.

Idea:  Try scheduling a StitchFix order by clicking here to get a choice of interchangeable professional outfits PLUS that much needed blazer.  I love StitchFix because it's the only place that I find professional clothes that are my style as in not old lady clothes and come in petite sizes.

6.  Create a professional e-mail address.
Sign up for a free gmail account and make your e-mail something professional.  Your name separated by a period at will always do the trick.

7.  Prepare answers to typical interview questions.
There will be trade specific questions, but the favorites will always pop up.  Research some common questions and develop bullet points for an answer.  It's important to sound prepared, not rehearsed so don't waste time memorizing a line.  

Idea:  Don't be afraid to ask family or friends to help role play a practice interview.

8.  Start networking.
Connections and possible opportunities await you when you simply tell people you're ready for a career  I once scored an interview on the elevator ride to another interview!  Always have extra resume copies.

9.  Create a LinkedIn profile.
LinkedIn has become a key tool for networking, recruiting, and researching applicants.  Utilize it!  You should definitely upload a profile picture but keep it tasteful, professional, and a solo shot.  Keep it updated with your most recent credentials.  Also, don't be afraid to solicit confirmation of those credentials from your current peers.

10.  Become confident in yourself.
In the words of my not so baby cousin, "be confident and prepare to sell yourself".  You need to prove to yourself that you're the perfect fit for a career before you can prove it to others.

What is your dream job?


  1. my social media is always clean, thank you very much... at least until they get to Hollywood Spy... there was much naughtiness there over the years as Google Ads likes often to remind me and threaten me :)

  2. I'm so glad social media did not exist when I was in college! I doubt I ever would have gotten a job.

  3. Thankfully most craziness for me comes from the cat and he just confuses so they pay little attention lol just joined linkedin too I see at your zoo.

  4. Congrats to your cousin! Being patient is another one. Job hunting always takes longer than you think

  5. 11. Turn back time.

    No one wants to hire someone as old as I am.



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