College Grads…How to Get the Best Job Part II

June 22, 2016

By Dave Bevington, Director of Automation, DRIphoto-1462536943532-57a629f6cc60

Learn about yourself. Knowing yourself is a key component to getting the job you want:

  • The first step is to develop “a thick skin” by recognizing you’ll never grow without feedback from others.
  • Next, become intentional about welcoming your managers, respected peers, and mentors to evaluate your work product and make recommendations for improving your approaches, theories, attitudes, and anything else that might be beneficial.
  • Criticism is not a dirty word—it can even become your best friend. Beware! If you receive nothing but compliments, chances are you are going to be hard pressed to reach your potential.
  • Asking for another person’s perspective fosters a bond. It makes them feel valued. And when you apply their insight, a connection is formed in which accountability and further improvement are solidified.
  • Be sure to circle back and follow up whenever you see good results—and be sure to give them the credit, publically if possible. What if you don’t get good results? You should still circle back and ask for help in problem-solving.
  • An excellent way to learn about yourself is to take personality tests. You can get them online and most of them are free. Complete a handful of them, compare the results for consistency, and then use the insights to guide your path.

Develop your interviewing skills. My best advice in two words? Be Prepared! Here’s more:

  • Research the company’s products, go-to market, ownership structure, employees, history and company culture.
  • Bear in mind that Glassdoor is not always reliable. In my experience, many times the only people posting on that site are disgruntled employees.
  • Review common interview questions and strategies. Practice your answers on paper and aloud. Go live with someone you trust and ask for feedback.
  • Look your interviewer up on LinkedIn and find out about their career path, interests, and educational background.

The Position. No job is perfect! So keep these things in mind:

  • What if you don’t really want this job? Remember, it’s not going to be your job forever. But the truth is one of the WORST things you can do for your career is NOT work somewhere in your chosen field.
  • Taking a job outside your field is common—but it backfires. It’s a HUGE red flag for hiring managers. Give yourself options, and if your first few choices don’t pan out, take a less desirable position in your field.

The Interview. Here are some vital nuggets:

  • Be relaxed and don’t be intimidated by the interviewer, but be mindful to be respectful and polite.
  • Honesty is the best policy. But when interviewing realize you do not have to offer too much. Listen carefully, answer the question, and wait for a response.
  • IMPORTANT! Close the interviewer by asking for the job—even if you’re not 100% sure you want it.
  • Ask for the interviewer’s business card and send a thank you email within 24 hours. Google “thank you notes for interviewers.” Have someone proofread your email before you send it.
  • If you are not offered a position?  Show some tenacity and follow-up weekly for two weeks and then once a month. Often their new hire will not work out.

Once you get the job. Here’s a list of top priorities:

  • Make it your first and top priority to understand every facet of what your managers expect from you. Job descriptions usually don’t even scratch the surface.
  • Find out exactly how these expectations are being measured—so you can consistently exceed their expectations. Track your own outcomes so you will ready for your first job review.

Become known for being reliable. Giving great attention to detail in your follow-up with people will go a long way toward job advancement!

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