Getting started on the road to your dream career can be a daunting task for many. Preparation is everything. From how to dress to how to create a killer resume, applicants must stand prove themselves through uniqueness and resilience in an increasingly competitive job market.
In today's day and age, there are several ways of zeroing in on your dream job. A decade ago, the preferred method of job-hunting was via referrals from people who are already working. In such a case, the credentials of the person referring were enough and most employers never pursued further background checks or additional scrutiny. In today's age, job seekers have a wide array of tools for job hunting; the biggest and most effective of these being the Internet. Never before have applicants been presented with such a wide range of choices as is available now on the world wide web. Online agencies, such as Careerbuilder, Monster, The Ladders and Prosperity Careers exist to help applicants look for jobs they will love doing. The Google search engine is also extremely precious in searching and researching jobs and employers.
2. Narrowing down
Ironically, the size of the Internet can sometimes be a hindrance to getting your dream job. With far too many options and scams lurking online, job seekers are inanduated with many offers, and end up wasting time and money on worthless pursuits. To guard against time-wastage, organization and focus are key. These may involve writing down goals and drawing up career goals.
3. Preparing a killer resume
Undoubtedly one of the most crucial processes of the quest for your dream job is your resume. Most applicants put very little thought into how important the resume is. Hiring managers, human resource consultants and other recruiters use the resume to build a profile of the applicant. Due to their busy schedule, managers in most cases do not have time to go over every resume with a fine-tooth comb. They usually take a quick glance at the resume looking for key elements and unless you know what those elements are, your resume will be ill-equipped to compete against others in an almost saturated job market.
4. Appearance-First impressions are great impressions
Mark Twain once said, "Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence in society." You've also heard of that you never get a second chance to make a first impression. Great importance should be placed on dressing for your first interview and consequently your first day at work. Unfortunately, many applicants fail in this area because they let what they think or what their family or significant other thinks determine how to dress for an interview. Dressing and general appearance are the biggest non-verbal messages an applicant can send to the interviewer or recruiter.
For men, dark colors are preferable especially when it comes to suits, pants and shoes. Short hair and a clean shaven look are also the signature look for the corporate world. Pants should be well pressed and shoes well shined (avoid alligator shoes). Briefcases should be sleek.
Women should take special care in ensuring that their skirts are not more than 3 inches above the knee. The skirts should also not be too tight or suggestive for you to sit down comfortably. Nails should be well manicured and clean (applies to men as well).Perfume and make-up should be applied sparingly. Shoes should be conservative. Breath-mints are also a must.
There are also a number of items that can irrevocably ruin an otherwise good interview:
1. A cell phone ringing during an interview
2. Chewing gum
3. Coffee or soda
4. Portable music devices
You should also make an attempt to cover up all tattoos and body piercings.
Jim Muturi has been an Internet Expert and an online career consultant for the last 10 years. He is currently consulting with www.prosperitycareers.com
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