In the world of training and development, presenters live by the mantra: “Tell them what you’re gonna tell them. Tell them, and then tell them what you told them.” Whether you’re a child or an adult, repetition is one of the ways we learn. Take GEICO, for example. It’s because we’ve heard the ad so many times, we all know what can happen in 15 minutes. The same holds true for the jobseeker who wants to convince a hiring manager that she is the best candidate for the job.
Reiterating, “This is why you should hire me,” is effective, as long as you wrap your message in a professional package. Think of your knowledge, skills, and abilities as a product, and develop a successful marketing campaign to sell yourself to a hiring manager who is looking to buy.
Start with your elevator speech:
Do you know what you want to do next and where you want to work? Do you know what you have to offer the employer and what problems you can solve? A well-thought out summary that is direct and catchy will be impressive; especially if you focus on how your skill set will benefit the organization. A targeted and focused elevator speech will set you apart from the candidates who are stumbling over their disorganized thoughts. Just make sure you practice – then practice some more.
How about your LinkedIn profile?
Does your picture project your professional self? Is your summary note-worthy? Do you have quotes and recommendations that would impress a recruiter and a hiring manager? In this day and age, people will search for you to find out something about you before they contact you. Your profile may be their first impression of you so make sure it’s a good one.
Speaking of social media, make sure your online presence on other sites such as Facebook, Vine, and Instagram is also professional. When you’re in the job market, it’s all fair game. Now is the time to monitor your accounts or set your privacy settings to control what others read about you.
You already know your resume is an integral part of your professional package, but did you know that on average, a recruiter spends no more than seven seconds glancing at a resume before making a decision? Instead of writing a paragraph filled with unsubstantiated claims, showcase your accomplishments or what others say about you. Create an attention-grabbing message as a remarkable introduction to your resume.
You’ll know your hard work is paying off if you’re getting calls. The interview is your chance to shine so make the best of the opportunity. Research the company beforehand and prepare answers to the most commonly asked interview questions. Be sure to include examples of your past accomplishments as part of each response. It’s one thing to claim you have a particular skill; it’s much more powerful if you can demonstrate it with a story.
One of the most important stories you will share is the answer to “Tell Me About Yourself.” It is almost always the first question asked and will set the tone for the rest of the interview. Prepare a response that relates to the position and helps the interviewer understand why you are the best fit. Knock this one out of the park and the rest of your interview will go much smoother.
Once you put it all together, you’ll be armed with an effective marketing campaign to launch your job search. Delivering the same message differently will have a powerful impact on your job search. Before you know it, your professional package will be just the gift that employers want, and you’ll be working in your dream job.
Authored by: Angela Constantino, Experiential Learning Coordinator, Community College Workforce Alliance