Back when we were at school the likelihood was that our teachers pushed us to pass our exams, get good grades and apply for universities around the country. University has always been seen as the main way to gain the knowledge and skills for a great career and it is something which has always been a big part of our lives. However, a college education alone will not get you a job.
Employers want you to have real-life experience. When employers are looking at applicants for entry-level jobs, they are going to hire applicants that have job experience over those who don’t. The best way to gain experience while earning a degree is through internship.
Here are five advantages of internship:
1. You Learn on the Job
The main advantage of internship rather than through a university course is the fact that you will be able to learn on the job and this will allow you to branch out and learn hands on skills which you wouldn’t learn during a course. You’ll gain people skills and experience from day one and this will always look good when you come to apply for jobs later down the line.
2. You Can Find Multiple Mentors
When you come into an internship there will be one member of staff who is charged with mentoring you and guiding you through the work making sure that you are safe and able to understand the work you are being given. This employee will be able to sit down and talk you through your work and they will be able to give you some rest advice from a person who actually works in the industry. It can be very valuable and allow you to be more successful.
3. It Helps You Learn Discipline
The main thing which will change for the way you work as you get an internship in a new place of work will be the education style. When you are thrust into the working world like this you will have to learn how to delegate work to yourself and make sure that you stay on track. You won’t have a teacher giving you homework and deadlines and this means you have to learn how to discipline yourself. It can be hard at first but it is a very valuable skill to learn.
4. It Looks Great on Your CV
Working in the job while you learn will always look good on your CV because it helps you to seem like a person who has it all figured out and it will show that you have the ability to manage your time and stay organized which is always what an employer wants. Being able to show that you have experience over people a similar age will also benefit you and it will ensure that they pick you rather than someone else for the job.
If you work in a certain place for your internship and they like you, you could earn yourself a permanent position at the workplace and this can mean that you already have your future career in the bag.
If you have dreams of working abroad, there are a few things you can do to prepare. Before you start packing your bags, you need to get your job application materials in order. You’ll do best in your oversea career journey if you have interviews scheduled before you get there, or better yet, you already have a job! Here are a few things you can do to prepare for your job search in a foreign country:
Apply for an Exceptional Talent Visa
If you are planning on working in a country where you are not a native citizen, you are going to have to apply for a visa. However, if you feel that you are particularly skilled in your area of work or specialism, you should consider taking tier 1 exceptional talent guidance. Any individual who is considered to be particularly gifted or competent in any area of the sciences, arts, humanities, medicine, digital technology, or engineering is eligible to apply for a tier 1 exceptional talent visa.
There are two categories when it comes to this visa. If you already established in your field and have proof of your worth to the new nation’s economy or culture, you count as a recognized leader with exceptional talent. If you are still emerging in your field, you are an emerging leader holding exceptional promise and will also be eligible. Securing this type of visa will show potential employers that you have been granted a visa solely on your merit and will encourage them to take you on.
Craft a CV
In the USA, we predominately use resumes as our introductory “here’s my career story” document. Our resumes are edited down to just what matters for the job at hand. We keep it focused, short, and to the point. However, in foreign countries, you may be asked for a curriculum vitae, or CV for short.
A CV lists all of your experience, education, awards, presentations, and other career experience. It can be quite lengthy—most are 3-5 pages. Be aware, though, that not every employer will want your CV. Read the job ad carefully and decide whether you should submit at CV or a resume.
If you do need to submit your resume, keep it neat and succinct. Ditch your resume’s objective and replace it with a professional summary or profile. If you include too much information on your resume, employers are likely to feel inconvenienced and miss the important information that you need to get across. So, make use of online resume templates to ensure your resume is easy to read. You find templates for CV’s, too.
Write a Polite Cover Letter
Your cover letter is exceptionally important when you’re applying for a foreign job, especially if you’re submitting a super-long CV. It’s your introduction to the employer, and it should be culturally sensitive. Some cultures expect a “softer” introduction, where others expect a direct approach witha call to action.Do you research before you submit your application materials.
Your cover letter should highlight how your work experience meets the needs the employer listed in the job advertisement. If you have a visa already, you could include this information in your concluding paragraph.
Line up Your References
Not all positions require a reference. However, it’s a good idea to have some ready. A good reference will essentially give the employer a green light to hire you. No matter how competent or qualified someone may be on paper, there is still a chance that they may not be a good employee. Perhaps they are unreliable, not turning up to shifts or arriving late regularly. Maybe they have a poor work ethic or a bad attitude. They might simply not work well with colleagues and always bring tension or a negative atmosphere to the workplace. A good reference will prove that you are none of these things and that you will form a valuable part of your potential new employer’s company, giving them confidence in offering you a position.
You Need a Portfolio
Without a doubt, you need an online portfolio that makes you shine. Foreign employers will want to see your talents before taking a chance on you, and they aren’t likely to wait for you to take a week to put something together.
You can create an online portfolio inexpensively with WordPress or Weebly without knowing anything at all about web design. There are no excuses for not having a portfolio.
Focus on Specific Countries and Know Their Customs
If you’re sitting in front of your computer dreaming of escaping your current work situation, you need to get clear on where it is you want to go, and then you need to research as much as you can about your chosen countries. Just wanting to go anywhere at all will make your job search difficult. Instead, narrow your search down to 2-3 countries, and make sure you know everything there is to know about those countries’ professional etiquette.
For example, in some countries, it is customary to spent the first ten minutes of a meeting talking about non-work related topics. If you know this custom, you can prepare ahead of time to talk about neutral topics before jumping into why you’re the perfect person for the job. Strategy is everything in finding a job abroad, so make sure you understand your target countries before you apply for a job.
Jarell and I were invited to participate in a career fair for college students in California last week. We were asked to create a 2-minute video explaining something about careers. Do you know how hard it is to explain something as complicated as careers in two minutes? Let me tell you: It’s very hard!
As instructional designers, we’ve made videos using instructional software, like Camtasia, but we’ve usually shied away from the more professional stuff like Adobe’s Premiere Pro. Now that we’re running our own company, we decided it was time to let go of our old learning developer training wheels and see what we could do.
Of course, my computer didn’t have enough hard drive space (or RAM) to make a video, so the first thing we had to do was replace it. This meant buying and returning three Macbook Pros over four days before finding the right one for the job! Then, we had to source footage, write a script (and rewrite it 20 times), record voiceover (and re-record it four times), and ask for newbie clarifications on minutiae like “how long does the fade at the beginning need to be?”
Trying new things is important, though. We tell you all the time how important it is to keep your skills fresh and become a lifelong learner—it’s the only way to stay relevant in the job market. So, try not to judge us too harshly as you watch our first Perfectly Employed video: 9 Things You Must do to Be Hirable.
Just in case you missed something, we created this handy infographic:
If you’ve just graduated college, you may not be prepared for the cold, harsh reality that adulting is hard. The real world can be discouraging, and in our current political climate, it can be downright depressing. But no matter how much rejection you face, you still have to pull up your big girl (or boy) shorts and take action. You have to find a job.
You have to strategize to find the job you want. You can’t just fill out a bunch of online applications and assume you’re going to find a job. You might just out of sheer chance, but when you leave your career to chance, you usually end up in a crappy job you hate. There are better ways.
1. Visit Your College’s Career Advisors
Most colleges have an office dedicated to helping students and alumni find jobs. It might be called a “career center” or “alumni services.” If you’re not sure where to find it, ask the receptionist at your former school.
It’s in your former college’s best interest to help you find a job because the US Department of Education keeps track of information regarding how many graduates have jobs, both in and out of their degree industry. Your employability should be a priority to your former college, because if you have their shiny degree and can’t get a job, they look bad.
Your college’s career advisors usually have a list of employers looking to hire graduates. Some advisors can help with your resume and cover letter too, but in our experience, their advice is usually outdated on those particular topics. Some career offices have a closet of professional attire for interviews—just ask!
2. Don’t Take a Gap Year Before Getting a Job
As you’re leaving school or college, your focus should be on getting a job. Taking a “gap year” before getting a job is an immature idea that won’t impress employers. You (or your parents) have spent a lot of money on your college education. The least you can do is put your degree to work. Be a grownup and get a job.
When your job search isn’t going your way, it can be tempting to just give up. Unfortunately, life doesn’t let you just give up. You have to find a job, so don’t stop trying until you have one!
3. Find a Coach
If you’re waiting for the job fairy to show up and hand you your first job, it’s time you find a career coach. If you’re stuck in your career in any way, a career coach can help you set goals and clearly see the steps to reaching them. Jarell and I offer career-coaching services via phone, online, and even in person if you live in the Orlando or Tampa area.
4. Redo Your Resume
One of the easiest things you can do to make meaningful change in your job search is to do something different with your resume. Improve your action verbs. Ditch your objective. Create a professional profile. Add skills. Change the format. Make a video resume. Keep playing with it until you find a winner!
5. Do Something to Gain Experience While You’re Looking for a Job
f you didn’t intern while in college, your lack of experience may be holding you back from finding a job. That doesn’t mean you stop looking for a job, but it does mean you should do something to fill that experience gap.
The first thing you should consider is taking an externship or fellowship, but if you can’t find one of those, volunteer. Find a company you admire, and offer to work for free. The worst they can say is “no.”
You can also start a side hustle. Employers will be impressed at your entrepreneurial spirit, and your parents will be impressed that you’re making money all on your own. Running your own side business gives you skills that you can take into any job field; plus, it gives you something to talk about in your cover letters and interviews.
Working in the healthcare sector is one of the most emotionally satisfying careers imaginable. Sadly, landing your dream job isn’t always easy, even after putting yourself through medical school.
Here are just four common hurdles that you’ll have to clear, and what you can do to stop them from standing in your way:
Problem 1: No One is Hiring for the Job You Want
There will always be a calling for healthcare professionals. Nonetheless, it’s also worth noting that the competition for the best positions is fierce. If you lack experience or connections, your opportunities may be limited.
If you are determined to work in this field, though, you can start by broadening your horizons. Specializing in locum tenens staffing roles is a great option. Above all else, covering for other physicians ensures each day is a new challenge.
On a similar note, joining a similar agency for nursing roles can be a great way to land steady employment while keeping things fresh. This kind of job also leads to great networking opportunities that can help you find the job of your dreams when you’re ready.
Problem 2: You Can’t Land an Interview
Once you’ve found the perfect role, you’ll be desperate to prove yourself to the employer in the job interview. Unfortunately, the bland nature of application processes can make it difficult to stand out from the crowd. The numbers are against you, especially if you’re inexperienced.
A little creative thinking can soon solve this problem, though. A video resume can be a great way to draw attention and start to showcase your personality while highlighting your credentials. If the employer likes your character, this will bode well for your chances.
If you really want to leverage a video resume to its fullest potential, you could make a customized video for each employers. This extra attention to detail shows how much you want the job.
Problem 3: You Struggle with Getting to Work
As a healthcare worker, you shouldn’t have to travel too far for work. Still, you may need to visit several venues depending on the type of job. Likewise, there’s a chance that the early or late work hours will make it hard to use public transportation. Paying for a cab is hardly ideal either.
You need to know how to drive. A crash course that helps you pass your test within a few days may be one of the smartest investments you’ll ever make. Besides, who wants to carry home their groceries on the bus? Knowing how to drive makes your life better overall. From a working perspective, it makes you a better candidate and helps you stay punctual.
Problem 4: You Can’t Find A Job That Suits Your Schedule
The harsh reality is that the healthcare sector runs on a 24/7 basis. If you aren’t prepared to complete at least some shifts at potentially unsociable hours, you may need to look at another industry. After all, you cannot expect to turn up and have everything your way.
This may mean that you need to cancel the odd night out. You may even need to consider having a babysitter from time to time. However, this doesn’t need to be a permanent fixture in your life. Once you’re established in your position, you can think about perfecting your hours and workload.
Right now, though, simply getting your foot in the door should be the priority. Do not forget it.
If you’ve been searching for a job for awhile, it’s easy to get discouraged when you can’t get an interview—or worse, when you land interviews, but never hear from the employer again. After countless applications and resume tweaks nothing is coming back positively for you. You wonder if you will ever manage to get a job and you’re starting to lose hope.
Then, there are three positive actions you can take right now to improve your chances of finding a job. Take a deep breath, then get started!
Spruce Up Your Resume
You will start to notice a much quicker and more positive response rate from your applications if you give your entire resume an overhaul. You need an excellent resume objective in order to land an interview. You might need to tweak your resume for each individual job you apply for, so that you can showcase and highlight your strengths. This will take time to refine but once you have got the hang of it, you will soon become a pro.
Landing the interview is one of the most difficult parts of obtaining your dream job. Once you have the interview in the bag, you will need to brush up your interview techniques. Don’t rest on your laurels or credentials in order to bag the role, you will need to be articulate and well informed during the interview. Making a good impression in the interview room is easier than it sounds. All you have to do is be yourself, tell the truth and tell stories about how your previous experience will help you in this job. Make sure you can explain exactly why you applied for this job too, otherwise the panel won’t feel invested in you.
In order to reach your career goals you need keep your skills on top form. The more you can talk about first-hand experience in an interview environment the more impressive it will be to your prospective employer. Go above and beyond to meet the criteria of the job description and you will be sure to impress your future bosses.
Our Top Articles about Strengthening Your Skill Set
If you’ve been out of work for awhile, you’re probably running low on funds. One way to make some money and strengthen your resume is to start a side hustle. There’s a million ideas, from teaching English to Chinese students online for VIPKid, to selling your freelance services on Fiverr.
So get your resume together, gain the skills you need, and get some hands on experience. Employers will be jumping at the chance to hire you as long as you aren’t afraid to showcase your skills and talents. It can be a cut throat world, so there is no time to be shy and reserved. Know your worth and always be positive about your abilities.
A video resume is an especially good addition to your job application materials if you’ve been applying to a lot of jobs, but haven’t landed an interview. It’s a quick and easy way to stand out in a stack of boring resumes. It shows a glimpse of who you are, and it gives you a chance to show your poise and professionalism.
If you’re one of those people who know that if you can just land the interview, you’ll get the job, then a video resume is a great way to introduce yourself to a potential employer. Here’s what you need to know about video resumes:
1. It’s Not a Live Reading of Your Resume
When I say “video resume,” a lot of our clients think I mean that they should turn on their webcam and read their resume to the camera. That’s boring, and it’s not going to get you interviews.
Think of your video resume as an introduction of your skills and experience to an employer. You’re also trying to show that you have personality and poise—you’re not just a name on a piece of paper. You’re the best person for the job, and they’d be fools not to hire you.
2. Good Video Resumes are Very Short
Your video resume should be no more than three minutes. In fact, that’s a bit long. Keep it short and to the point. You need a script, but you don’t want to look like you’re reading it on camera. You want to seem like you’re speaking directly to your potential employer.
3. You Need a Good Camera
Good, HD-quality cameras are everywhere these days. Anyone can buy a GoPro, and our iPhones take fantastic videos. For example, check out this video of my kid’s lion mosaic I shot with an iPhone 8 in my back yard:
In broad daylight, your cell phone’s camera is a great choice. For best results, shoot early in the morning (before 10 AM) or an hour before sunset. The lighting is naturally flattering, and you won’t be squinting against the sunlight.
4. Get a Friend to Help You
A video resume is not the time to show off your selfie skills. Instead, have a friend help you run your camera. They can hit record and stop in the right places, and signal when you should start speaking. Plus, having a friend there gives you someone to look at as you’re speaking so you look more natural on camera.
A good friend will also help you adjust your script to sound as natural and professional as possible. Good friends who will tell you the truth are one of your strongest assets.
5. Use a Tripod or a Stable Surface
Even with a friend’s help, you still need a stable surface to set your camera on while you record, otherwise your video will turn out bumpy and shaky. You don’t want to distract your audience with a shaky camera.
Ideally, you need a tripod. Luckily, they aren’t as expensive as they used to be, and you can get them anywhere, from Amazon to Target. If you’re recording with your iPhone, you will need a tripod mount. Most GoPro kits come with one included in the box.
6. Your Sound Quality is Very Important
Your beautiful, HD video isn’t worth the memory space it’s written on if your sound quality sucks. Many career gurus say you should invest in a professional microphone for a video resume, but it’s not necessary. As long as you are close to your iPhone or GoPro when you speak, and you limit background noise, you can shoot a professional-looking video without a fancy microphone.
To make sure your video sounds crisp, clear, and professional, don’t shoot your video outside when it’s windy. Your hair may look amazing, but all you’ll be able to hear is the wind.
Make sure noises like barking dogs and traffic aren’t audible on your video, too. Always listen to your recording as soon as you make it so you can make adjustments as necessary.
7. Choose Your Background (or Shoot Location) Wisely
Your background is important. You have to have balanced lighting, which is why an outdoor location is a solid choice. But, if you have a lovely home office, with your fancy degree and awards hanging strategically on the wall behind your office chair, you have the perfect background.
If you choose an indoor location, make sure you have good lighting. You can always reposition lamps or shoot your video sitting next to a window.
You might also think of an industry-specific place for your video shoot. For example, if you’re applying to be a lifeguard, shoot your video resume at the beach or beside a pool. If you’re applying to be a Web developer, position your computer in the background. Get creative!
This should go without saying, but every time I think everyone should know to dress professionally when on camera with a potential employer, I end up in a Skype interview with a candidate dressed in a ratty T-shirt and disheveled hair. So, I’m saying it: Dress professionally for your video resume.
Black is not the best color on camera. It usually makes you look like you’re heading to a funeral or hanging out with the mob. If you must stick to a dark color, go with navy or charcoal grey—and don’t forget a pop of color, like a blue scarf or a pink camisole.
Dress as if you were headed for an interview. You want to look polished. Make the time to look your best—you won’t regret it!
9. Just Like Your Paper Resume, You Need More than One
If you’re becoming an expert at job searches (and we hope by now you are), you are applying for several different kinds of jobs within your chosen industry or career field. For example, as an instructional designer, Jarell and I pick up instructional design jobs, but we also look at web development gigs with an education focus, educational writing gigs, retention and student success consulting gigs, teacher training gigs—anything related to educational support. Obviously, the same video resume wouldn’t work for all of those types of jobs. That’s why you need more than one.
Think about your different audiences when you’re writing your video resume scripts, and write a different script for each audience. Most people should have 3-5 different video resumes.
10. Video Resumes Aren’t for Every Industry
Of course, video resumes aren’t for every industry. If you’re applying to be a police officer or a fireman, a video resume probably won’t help you as much as if you’re applying to be a journalist or consultant. If you’re an entrepreneur, a video resume can do wonders for attracting clients. Use your best judgment, and if you find yourself in a situation where you’re not getting any bites on your job application materials, it never hurts to try a video resume.
If you’re ready to make a video resume, the first thing you should do is draft a script. To make it easy for you, we’ve drafted a What to Say in a Video Resume guide that includes examples and a “mad libs” like template for writing your script! Fill out the form below to download your free copy.
Congratulations! You’ve graduated college. Your long journey from home education or public school drama to learn-who-you-are college life is complete. Next step: the real world.
You have a lot on your mind right now. You have to frame your diploma, open your graduation gifts, and wash a semester’s worth of laundry. Sooner or later, though, you are going to have to face the fact that you’re not going back to school in the fall, and it’s time to grow up and start adulting. Are you ready?
You might be feeling a bit overwhelmed, so we’re going to keep this short and easy for you. Here are four small steps you should take right now to start crafting your adult life successfully:
1. Get Your Money In Order
The moment you stepped out of the grand doors of your college institution, your financial circumstances changed drastically. You don’t have a lovely financial aid check coming each semester. Your parents aren’t going to pay your bills any more. If you’re like most college graduates, you now have a student loan to pay. It’s a big smack in the face—you need to take a harsh look at your money situation.
To help with the student loan saga, visit studentloansconsolidation.co to learn how to make it easier to swallow. Believe it or not, there are all sorts of income-sensitive plans for paying back your loans. Your loan officer won’t do this automatically, though. You have to fill out the proper paper work and ask for it.
You should also sit down and create a budget. Figure out what, realistically, you can spend each month on necessities and luxuries. Necessities include food, transportation, and a place to live. Everything else is a luxury.
2. Find a Real Job
Your shiny new degree has a purpose—to help you find a job. It’s the key to unlock jobs that require a college degree. You’ve worked hard to earn it, but now it’s time to let it serve its purpose.
So, you need a resume that shows that you’re more than just that shiny new degree. A creative copywriter can help you spruce up your resume and tell your story in a way that employers see you as the perfect person for the job. You should also tidy up your LinkedIN profile and take a good long look at your social media profiles to make sure you look squeaky clean online for employers. A lot of them will Google you before an interview, so make sure they find exactly what you want them to find.
You also need to prepare for job interviews. Find two outfits you can wear to interviews that are completely professional and make sure they are always clean and pressed, waiting for you to land an interview. You should practice how you will answer common job interview questions, like “tell me about yourself” and “describe a situation where you solved a problem.”
Of course, you also have to actually apply for jobs. Set weekly goals for the number of job applications you will complete, and keep a log of where and when you applied. The log will help you send follow up emails, and it also shows you and your parents the amount of effort you’re putting into your job search.
3. Gain More Skills
Just because you’re done with college doesn’t mean you’re done learning. While you’re job hunting, work on acquiring more skills for your resume, and bonus points if those skills are directly related to your industry. You can learn anything technology-related on the internet, so there’s no excuse not to learn a coding language like HTML or software used everywhere, like Adobe Acrobat.
At the very least, find a course in leadership, management, or marketing. No matter what your industry, eventually you will want to lead something, and learning to market products also helps you learn to market yourself.
The point is, you should never stop learning. The world changes rapidly, and you should be able to change right along with it.
While you’re focusing on finding a job and figuring out how to pay your bills, it’s important that you think about the kind of future you want. You need a clear idea of what you want from your personal life so that you can stay focused on achieving it.
Many people want a family, but there’s no rush for that. Make a list of goals for things you want to do and what your ideal life would look like. Maybe you want to travel the world, or achieve a fitness goal. Maybe you want to meet new friends or stay connected to old ones. Maybe you want a house at the beach or a cabin in the mountains. Making a list, or at least a Pinterest board will help you remember what it is you really want out of life. It will remind you why you’re working so very hard.