No matter how many resume revisions you do, or how carefully you construct your cover letter, pieces of paper can only take you so far in obtaining your dream job. You’re going to have to sell yourself. Stacy Grau, Associate Professor of Professional Practice in Marketing, has some tips to sell yourself well instead of short.
Find what makes you unique, your talents and likes. Your competition is huge.
“The kids who are all graduating from the same school, same state, same region, same country. That’s your competition. So you’ve got to ask yourself “what do I do and not do very well?’ And be really honest. That’s hard, especially for a lot of students in this generation. They’ve grown up without a lot of criticism so it’s hard for them to really look at themselves and say okay I’m not really good at that.”
Be involved and informed. Step out of your comfort zone into new networking circles.
“Students have assignments due every day, and they may not want to sit around and watch the news in their free time. But I think it’s important for students to know the big picture, read a lot, and read outside of their field. The basis of marketing is finding all these connections and making something out of it. So if you’ve never been exposed to the connections you’re not going to be a very good marketer.”
Don’t fake it “till you make it, because you won’t. Social media will find fault in your fallacy.
“You have to have authenticity especially with your personal brand. You can’t create what you think people what to hear. With social media, and the number of people you’re exposed to, they can spot a fake a mile away. As far as personal branding, when you go through the process be really honest and pick something that’s authentic and unique and not something to “game it.'”
NAILING THE INTERVIEW
Whether a freshman or a senior, we’re all worried about interviews. Do I make jokes? Do I use my hands? When do I check back with the company? Luckily, Matt Riordan, Assistant Director of Career Advising, has the do’s and don’ts to keep you cool during an interview.
- First and foremost, research the company. A little bit of insight goes a long way.
- Spend a few minutes thinking of your experiences and find an anecdote you can tie to the job.
- Always, always, always send a thank you note after your interview, and check back if you haven’t heard from the company in a week to nine days.
- Smile, let your natural body language act itself out, and be yourself.
“Every interviewer wants to know if you have the skills and the experience to do the job. But the other side of the interview is questioning whether you, as a person, are going to be able to fundamentally walk into their office and survive. The only way the interviewer can figure out if you’ll fit in their company, based upon your personality and likability, is to see who you really are.”
- Mistake silence for weakness in an interview. Spending 10 seconds to produce a concise, thoughtful response leaves a stronger impression than a minute spent trying to talk your way into an answer.
- Be something you’re not. If you’re not genuine as you begin the interview, as it goes on you’ll become more nervous, you’ll talk faster and your answers will be less reliable.
“It’s going to be stressful enough, you’re going to be nervous, you’re going to have mannerisms, language, and all this stuff that goes haywire. The last thing in the world you need to worry about is “I have to act a certain way.’