Tips on how to get a job?

Discussion in 'Help with Life' started by Lauriam, Jul 23, 2016.

  1. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    So I really need a job. And I've been looking all summer, applying at all sorts of places. Only one place called me for an interview, but then didn't call me back later. And they were looking to hire at five different franchises. I figured some of the mistakes that I made in the interview that might have messed up my chances, but that's still the only interview that I've even had.

    And before anyone says it's a tough market, I just want to say, not in my town. There are help-wanted signs everywhere. Some of them are as big as the window they're in, some of them are huge banners hung from the roofs of the buildings. I've applied at all sorts of these places, and still haven't gotten a call (or when I call them to check up on my application and ask if they have any questions, I'm told that the manager isn't in but will be told that I called) and still nothing.

    I don't have the best work history, bc when I was younger I was in this self-fulfilling-prophecy loop where I felt like I was worthless bc I had no job and no education, so I never got a job or education because I felt like I was worthless. It was a mess, and really screwed up my chances, but then I worked to change all that and my work history over the past two years is pretty good. Yeah, the work is low on the totem pole, all minimum wage burger-flipping stuff, but I mean really that's most of what I'm still applying for, and I worked hard at those jobs and did work I could be proud of, or at least as proud as a person can be over a burger.

    I really don't understand why I'm not getting called. My applications are filled out well, my resume looks professional enough, I provide references and due to the work I've done in the past, I know that my old employers have very little to complain about, if anything at all. So... Any tips on how to make my applications more appealing? Because I really need a job, and with my town being a college town, the job market is going to get more cutthroat as soon as fall hits, so my window of opportunity is rapidly closing.
     
  2. Shuhbooty moon child

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    I would love to look at your resume C:

    So, for me personally- I've had many jobs. I mean- a lot. And it's because I don't like most of them (I was emotionally unstable working there and ended up quitting a month later). But these are the things I've learned:

    Call the next business day, always in the morning around 8-9am. Calling later in the day makes it harder (they should ask for your info to give to a manager, and then hope the manager calls you back).

    If they give you a time frame on when they will be looking at applications, call during that time. (like if you all a Monday and they say the end of the week call Thursday or Friday. Showing persistence isn't bad. Means you are trying and managers look for that)

    When you call, be as professional as you can be, no matter what job it is you're calling into. Always say 'ma'am or sir' and try to remember the names of who answers. (like when you call, and a girl name Shelly answers- say thanks Shelly have a good day and then remember the managers name when they introduce yourself)
    So when the manager answers it'll go something like:
    Them: "This is Mark."
    You: "Hi Mark, my name is (name) and I'm calling in regards to an application I submitted?
    Them: "O when did you apply."

    Tell them, end the convo with their name and a have a nice day.

    Make a list of the important thngs you think maes you different. If that means, you can box food at 0.15 seconds say it! If you are a fast learner, say it! Having these things already preped and ready to say makes it easier for applications and interviews. I hope this helps a little bit, ad you get that call you're wating for!
     
  3. Mish clod

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    Being stuck in a job seeking rut can be soul-destroying, but try not to let it get you down. There are many people in your position and the longer you are unemployed, the bleaker it seems. But it sounds like you are very switched on, keeping your eyes open to opportunities etc. So, you already have that advantage over people who don't bother to look in shop windows, for example.

    Some tips of the trade that I have learned over the years:

    • Quantify your accomplishments, don't just say 'I have previous customer service experience', say 'I have two years experience in fast-paced customer-facing roles'. If you can say something like 'flipped 100 burgers per hour' or 'persuaded customers to upgrade up to 100 regular meals to xtra large meals per dinner service on a regular basis', even better!
    • If you've ever received employee of the month or any other kind of award, let your reader know.
    • If you have any leadership experience, be sure to include it, even if it's just training up new starters.
    • It's tedious, but try to match up your resume to the job advert or job description/person spec if there is one. This might mean editing your resume for every different job you go for. Covering letters should always be individual to the job.
    • If you are part of any 'extra-curricular' activities, such as a sport, hobby of volunteering, you could include this as it will tell your reader more about your character and what type of person you are, and will inform them on whether you would be a good fit for their business. If you don't volunteer, maybe now could be a good time to pick it up?
    You might already have a stellar resume which already ticks all of these boxes. If so, I don't know what to tell you other than don't lose hope! Also, if you'd like me to take a look at it, I wouldn't mind.
     
  4. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    Thanks, guys, that will really help. :)

    Here's a link to a copy of my resume, though I removed all names and numbers, no offense to you guys, just anything I share on the internet, I do that with. XD

    Be as critical as you can be, if this looks super cheesy and is NOT as 'good enough' as I thought it was, let me know. XD Anything to get me a job. XD

    EDIT: Thought I should mention, around half of the places I apply at are online-only, and sometimes don't provide a way for me to include the resume itself. Sometimes the questions allow for me to include all that information, but sometimes they only allow the bare minimum of info, like names and numbers, nothing else. :/ But still, for any places that I can leave the resume with, advice is always welcome.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2016
  5. Shuhbooty moon child

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    This is my resume. It took me roughly 2 months to get a resume (the style and words I wanted to use) I enjoyed to give. Maybe it can give you some ideas. (its an old address and i ust removed my phone number. everything else is almost open info hehe)

    I would add your schools anyways (high school), so it's not so blank. And if you have special skills (lie I said before you an put them there!)
    Your objective should change to something else.. like "Desire a position as a team member, customer service representative". (I got good marks for having my resume say customer rep. for awhile).
     

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  6. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    Thanks!

    (Any advice for what to put if you were homeschooled all your life so never attended an actual school? lol. XD)
     
  7. Shuhbooty moon child

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    You should put that!
    * Home Schooled (years started - years from) And if you went to get your GED or if your state lets you test for a HS diploma. If you didn't get either that's fine. Just leave that you were home schooled. Some people say in requirements they want "school experience" and sine that was missing it might have been a flag down.
     
  8. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    Ah, okay. That makes a lot of sense, thanks!
     
  9. Shuhbooty moon child

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    You're welcome!
    I had friends from church that did the same route. however, their son went to the school (my school) for sports. At first they wanted him to be a student (but their family was against it) so they asked for him to take at least one class. He took weight training and was eligible for sports (football). So if you did any sort of things like that also, add it.

    For the jobs that say you worked at the Church did you get paid for that? Or did you volunteer. If it was unpaid volunteer work add a section for "extra/training/volunteer jobs" instead.
     
  10. Mish clod

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    Like Shuhbooty has included in her resume, you could include a 'special skills section' to describe yourself in a bit more detail. For reference, I have the following info on my CV (in the UK, we use CVs which are a bit different from resumes in that they're usually a full 2-page long document whereas with resumes I understand it's more common to just have one page), after my contact details but before my work/education experience:


     
  11. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    Ah, okay. I never went to school for sports either, though I always wanted to (I really have no idea what my mom was thinking about the whole 'homeschooling' thing. I love her, but she was a terrible teacher and I fell way behind in my schooling, and was practically in charge of teaching myself, which didn't go well because first I was a kid and kids shouldn't be in charge of their own schooling, and then when I was a teen I felt like I was doomed to fail anyway so I didn't even try. That whole 'self-fulfilled prophecy' thing at work again. XD So I pretty much had zero education until I turned 20, and then got serious about changing my future and making myself someone I could like. XD) But yeah, so I had no sports either. XD The only thing I can recommend other than work experience is my volunteer work, and I actually have more volunteer work I probably could add, so adding a separate section like you say should be a good help.
    That seems like a really good idea. I'll definitely include something like that, thanks.

    You guys are awesome! :D I should have done this a long time ago. XD
     
  12. Shuhbooty moon child

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    I can't wait to update this resume when I'm finished with school. I love how you wrote your skills down, stealing the idea! ;D

    I defiantly understand that. (this is an old, haven't updated in a year aside from address resume) and I was seriously embarrassed t the fact I completed HS, but I was missing credits, that my parent's couldn't afford (200 bucks a credit, i was missing 6) I didn't focus the last year of school and it sucked. So I ended up getting my GED which I don't put in here- because if they want to really know they will ask/see in my background check. But it's important for them to see something, I've learned. I can't wait to read the update resume you make!
     
  13. Midnight Star Master of Physics

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    I would advise you add in the transferable skills you've learnt from each job role in the description of each job role. For example 'This enhanced my communication skills as I was dealing directly with customers on a daily basis'. Other skills you could emphasise are like teamwork skills, leadership skills, being able to work independently, taking the initiative to do things, being proactive, being able to work in a fast-paced high pressure environment, working to deadlines.

    And since everyone else is sharing, here's mine. That said I'm not having much success currently either. Um I should specify that CV is tailored to apply for jobs dealing with Optics or Lasers. I have multiple CV's for different types of jobs.
     
  14. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    Ooh, good idea, thanks, Midnight! :) Btw, you have an awesome resume and you're also just a really cool person all around, thought I'd let you know. XD
     
  15. Midnight Star Master of Physics

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    Thank you~

    Oh organisational skills and time management skills are also ones you could probably add in from the jobs you've done. The receptionist one especially would need good organisational skills.

    Also you could probably include ones to do with money like good with handling money and sorting financial matters or 'strong maths skills which were needed with handling money and finances, ensuring the correct amount of money was given and received' or words to that effect.
     
  16. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    Awesome, thanks! lol, this is really starting to round out. XD You all are so awesome. :)
     
  17. Midnight Star Master of Physics

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    Be prepared though as any transferable skill you mention you have, they might ask you for an example of where you have demonstrated this. That's why it's also good to link it to a role where you needed that skill. But like if you mention being able to use your own initiative, they might be like 'give an example of a time where you used your initiative', so I recommend you think about these so if you get asked about it you can answer without any issues.

    Additionally think about adding more sections to your CV like a general interests or hobbies section, what do you do outside of work. This will show you're a more rounded person and give them more to ask about in interviews. Maybe consider a skills section with stuff like 'proficient with using Microsoft Office, computer literate' and the transferable skills you've mentioned in your roles. A good CV should be no more than two pages, if you're struggling for space then change references to available on request. If you don't fully fill the page(s), change the amount of space between each paragraph and space it out so it looks like it just fits nicely onto one or two pages.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2016
  18. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    Alright, so here's a copy of my edited resume. I tried to take as much of your advice as possible, but if I made any mistakes or if you guys think of anything else I could do, let me know.

    I also took out that graphic with my initials. I never really liked it, I only had it there because it came as part of the base format of the document. But I think it was just kind of clunky and unnecessary, and it looks much better without it. I also changed the font, because idk if this is true or not, but I recently heard that while fonts like Arial are easier to read, they're also easier to forget, and to make something more memorable on a subconscious level, you should pick a font that is slightly more complicated, so that people have to focus more on what they're reading, and will therefore remember it better. lol, like I said, I have no idea if it's true or not, but I suppose every little trick might help. XD
     
  19. Midnight Star Master of Physics

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    This is a big improvement on your last one and I really like it. I would maybe say add in a bit more about your communication skills and team work skills as these are usually important ones that employers look for. Also maybe mention leadership skills as I believe you can justify these in training new employers and in being a co-leader in the teacher role.

    That said, I don't actually like the font change. It's much harder to read and I don't think that's a good thing.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2016
  20. Lauriam I hope I didn't keep you waiting...

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    Third Version. I mentioned communication and leadership a few more times, and also played around with formatting to make sure it stayed on two pages. XD Tell me if it looks too complicated now.