A job search is not a random hit or miss process. There are things you can do to ensure your application stands out. This will give you the best possible chance of landing that interview, and dream job.
1) Make sure you are an obvious fit for the position.
This seems like a statement that we should all just take for granted right? I mean if you would like to apply for a position why would you not make sure that your CV presents you as an obvious fit for the position? So perhaps a better question is “how do you achieve this?” Well this is actually very easy, it just takes a little more work then most people are willing to put in during their job search.
To start you should never send the exact same CV to each and every position you apply for. Read through the job description, and make sure that you adjust your CV to highlight the skills and experience that you have that suit each particular position you apply for. Remember in the Blog titled, 5 things you should do while job searching, we said it is much better to send your CV to 3-5 positions that really match your skillset rather than 100 that don’t.
To put this even more simply, the company is saying “Here’s what we are looking for,” and your CV needs to say “Here’s how I can do that for you.”
2) Remember your CV is not set in stone.
This is very much linked to the previous point, but I really want to emphasis it as not enough. If you are busy with your job search you need to understand this! Your CV is not a Tattoo nor it is not set in stone, you can make adjustments to it whenever you want to! And you should! Treat your CV live a living document. Add to it when needed, remove from it when needed, and change the wording and key points to match the job description.
3) Be polished and presentable but do not be Boring.
A job interview is an extremely stressful affair. Obviously you are going to want to be professional, well-spoken, and looking your best, but please do not let yourself become boring. Fact: You are never going to bore someone into hiring you. Keep professional, but be yourself, smile, and own your imperfections. Instead of focusing on not making a single mistake during the interview rather focus on being likable and memorable.
4) Send a Thank you after the interview.
This is your chance to stand out above the other candidates. You MUST ALWAYS send a thank you E-Mail to the person who interviewed you on the same day that you leave the lodge or hotel you interviewed at. I can guarantee you with 100% certainty that if you do this and you are running head to head against another candidate you will get the position over the other person. Your thank-you email should not be a robotic cold mail, make sure the person receiving it feels that you are genuinely grateful for having the opportunity to interview at their company.
5) What can you do, not what do you get!
It is important to remember that the interviewer is more interested in what you can do for the company and far less interested in what you will get out of the deal. When asking questions make sure your questions show an interest in the company, do not spend all your time discussing salaries or benefits. Emphasise what you can offer the company and demonstrate why it makes good business sense for the company to hire you.
6) Be creative, stand out!
You do send a well-written cover letter with each and every application right? I hope so! If not chances are your applications will be overshadowed by those applicants who have taken the time to write one. Be creative when writing your cover letter, use humor or even images to make sure that your cover letter stands out and gets attention. Obviously make sure that your cover letter fits the position you are applying to.
Remember that your CV is just a marketing tool to get you an interview, if you are not getting interviews either your CV needs attention or you are applying for positions you do not match (You might have the most fantastic CV in the world, but if you do not match the minimum experience/skills and qualifications you will not get an interview. Do not send your CV to positions you are unqualified for, it is unprofessional and can actually hurt your chances of finding a job)
7) Prepare for your interviews.
Check out this checklist to help you prepare for an interview.
You are never going to know exactly what the interviewer is going to ask you. But you can certainly anticipate certain subjects based on the position you are applying for. For example, if you were applying for a Field Guiding position there is an above-average chance that you will be asked to take management on an interview game drive. You can also check out my post titled, 11 common questions interviewers ask and how to prepare for them, to get some better ideas about the usual questions interviewers ask. Make sure you spend some time thinking about what you will possibly be asked. Research the company you are applying for and have some questions prepared for the interviewer.
If you found this info useful during your job search please let me know in the comments below.
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