Top 10 Tips to Standing Out in a Competitive Job Market
Finding a job can be a daunting task. Finding a good job that you are excited about and satisfied with is even more challenging, and it doesn’t help your cause that there are so many other people right beside you (maybe even ahead of you) looking for those same jobs, too. If you want success in your search, here are a few keys that can help you stand out and land that next position.
- Have a resume with many keywords: What you say about yourself matters – and so does how you say it. Think about the key traits, skills, and experiences your prospective employer will be looking for when he hires. Emphasize those key words in your resume so that it will stand out and give him a reason to consider you.
- Have a resume with many numbers: Being specific is a good thing. Instead of vague, general descriptions, give specific dates, titles, budget numbers, earnings, etc. The specific numbers indicate specific accomplishments and usually reflect a successful candidate. They also show an employer that you are detailed and clear in your work, giving an invaluable professional impression.
- Be in a current position: Right or wrong, the reality is that your current job status makes a strong impression. If you are already employed, you will be seen as a hot commodity to be sought after. If not, employers may feel there must be a reason why you don’t have a job.
- Have a strong LinkedIn profile that pulls high in the search engines: Craft your LinkedIn profile with the search engine process in mind. This is your electronic resume, and potential employers or recruiters will be searching for the right fit. Include those keywords that will match their search terms. Focus on a good headline and summary as well as a specific job title.
- Connect with hiring managers and recruiters on LinkedIn: These contacts can serve as potential gateways to dozens or even hundreds of opportunities with employers. Make the right connection here, and numerous doors could open to you at once.
- Build a strong network: As they say, it’s not just what you know, but who you know that matters. There is truth to that. You may be a great candidate for many jobs, but if you are not connected with people, how will you be considered? Don’t pass up opportunities to build connections that might prove very useful down the road.
- Get in contact with the decision maker at the company: You might make a great impression at the front desk, but that won’t land you the job. If you can meet personally with the decision maker, you will have a chance to be in his/her mind at hiring time.
- Perform during the interview: Take interviews seriously. Employers are going to base their opinion of you on what they see in this short period of time. If you show up late, dress unprofessionally, or don’t have your expected documents and resources with you, employers will see someone who they can expect to be unprepared, unprofessional, and unreliable. On the other hand, if you show enthusiasm and expertise, you can distinguish yourself from the other applicants.
- Stay at your job longer than average: Just as looking for a job takes work and time, so does looking for an employee. Employers don’t want to search for, hire, and train someone only to see him leave in a few months. If you can show a track record of consistently staying at jobs for at least three years, it will bolster an employer’s confidence in you.
- Stay proactive with the job search: Don’t give up when a few job possibilities fall through and don’t work out. Keep trying, and be on the lookout all the time. You never know when and where the right opportunity might show up.
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