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More than just a piece of written resume, winning your dream job is all about making a perfect first impression and putting your best foot forward. You might look great on paper and get shortlisted because your resume is perfectly and neatly crafted. But not every employer will love you, let alone hire you just based on your resume.

Often times, employers look at other traits on their potential candidates. They examine your behaviours and personalities as well. Without further ado, in the end of this year, make sure a Cupid arrow is landed up for you and your career progression. Read on the listed tips below to make yourself appealing to employers.

Craft a professional social media presence – You should be aware that employers will stalk their potential candidates even before calling them for a job interview. In this case, social media can serve as an unplanned resume because it can tell a lot about you. Bad social media attitude, often means bad candidates. Of course you do not want your recruiter to think that way. So, ensure that your social profiles are up-to-date, appropriate for business matters, and have something exciting to tell recruiters about your personality.

Highlight your accomplishments – Your resume tells a lot about you, so is the way you answer your interview questions. When employers ask about your accomplishments that you already highlight in your resume, you should answer it certainly and accordingly. Show the potential employers that you do not embellish those acts and that your achievements can help you when you are hired for the position.

Ask relevant questions – Oftentimes, employers do not only assess your candidacy merely from how best your answers are, but how good and relevant is your questions regarding the job you are applying. The general rule here is to never ask questions that you can easily find in company’s website or Google search. Show them that you are well-prepared.

You can ask questions that will help you understand if this job if the right job for you. For example, ask about resources, budget you have to work with, upper level engagement in projects, or role that you should contribute in workplace.

Express your interest and ask the next steps – Many interviews end with only formal thanks and good-byes but it should not happen to you too. To make employers fall head over heels to you, you should show that you are genuinely interested about the job and position you are applying. Show them that you are the right candidate. Also, add key points in how you can be valuable for company and ask them the next step. Employers love to hire hardworking and smart working candidates.

Read also: 7 Things You Should Do Before Starting a Job Hunting

 

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Just like a resume, a cover letter is a weapon to “sell yourself” to the hiring managers. What differs between the two are the format and content. Resume is a brief description of your cover letter. In cover letter, you should write in detail about personal information and professional quality in order to attract recruiters to shortlist your job application.

Tim Windhof, an executive resume writer at Windhof Career Services in Columbus, Ohio, advices that your cover letter should address the following: how you learn about the opportunity, how your qualifications match the job requirements, your possible availability in the area and how you can be contacted. In brief, your cover letter must describe “why it should be you and not others”.

Take a look at the following tips on how to write an appealing cover letter for successful job search:

01 Choose wording that mirror the ad language  

Before writing a cover letter, you should review the job ads carefully and underline the main points. If your cover letter will be read by hiring managers, they are more likely to skim brief at first to see whether you are a good fit or not. You can increase your chance of getting shortlisted when your cover letter matches most requirements listed in the job ads.

Don’t embellish your qualifications if you don’t really meet the requirements. Only write down real information and present yourself in the best manner by describing as many qualities as you can. You never know which qualifications employers value most.

02 Pay attention to readability

This is important as a cover letter written in readable format will likely to win employer’s heart. In a cover letter, you should only use business letter format. This will make the recruiter to only focus on your content rather than on the writing style. Business letter format usually comes along with 1” – 1.5” margins, 12-point font, professional font, uniform alignment (justify).

03 Address it to specific person

Do your homework and find out who will be responsible to receive and check your job application. Calling or sending email to the contact person provided in the job ads can be an effective way to get such information. You can also ask questions or confirm certain information related to the job opportunity to the right source instead of wondering around.

If you are sending the cover letter via post mail, make sure to write both the employer’s and your address. It usually contains first and last name, street address, city, state zip, and postal code, phone and email for applicant.

Example:

Your Name

Address

City, State, ZIP code

Your phone number

Your email address

 

Date

 

Name of Hiring Manager

Name of Company or Organization

Street Address

City, State, Zip Code

On the other hand, if you send the cover letter via email, you can simply start by writing the hiring manager’s name. This is much better than writing with to whom it may concern. Yet, in a situation where you can’t find the name of the hiring manager or head of HRD, you can address your letter to “Dear Hiring Manager.” It’s a better choice than starting with Dear Sir/Madam.

04 Brief introduction

In this part, you should start with when and where you find the job opening. Make sure to specify job position that you want to apply, especially when the company post multiple job positions. Make it into a paragraph that contains two to four sentences.

05 Compelling content

To grab the hiring manager’s attention, you should start by writing your educational background, followed by your achievements such as related training or internships you have completed and work experiences. However, if you are a fresh graduate with no job or internship experience, you can emphasise other skills such as organisational, leadership, or even time management skill, etc.

You can write it in two to three paragraphs for the content. However, you should not be wordy or  spill too much information. Sometimes, giving too much information can hinder you from getting the job offer.

06 A-Okay closing

Always finish your cover letter by asking for an interview and reiterating how much you want to proceed to the next step of hiring process. Also, do not forget to always provide your phone number so the recruiter can contact you with ease.

07 Signature

Always give signature to either written or email cover letter. Use complimentary closing sentence such as best regards, regards, sincerely, yours respectfully, etc. In a written letter, just simply write your full name. Meanwhile in an email, always type your name followed by contact information.

Example:

Sincerely,

(your signature)

Your full name

Mobile: (66) 987-98787

Email: andie@andiejone.com

08 Proofread, proofread, and proofread

Lastly, you should give the right amount of time to proofread your work – in this case, your cover letter, maybe two or three times proofreading. Find out spelling or grammar errors that might lessen your chance from getting shortlisted. Again and again, cut out the flowery words as too much description or information will make your cover letter look unprofessional. As best as possible, keep your cover letter only in one page.

Read also: Passion versus Skill: What Comes First in a Job Search?

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You have graduated from uni with an excellent GPA. Now, you need to prepare yourself to enter the workforce and land a job in your dream company. Before applying for a job, first you have to ensure that you already have the most important weapon in a job hunt: an attractive resume.

A good resume should be more than just a dull list of your academic achievements and personal information. That being said, to write a resume that will get shortlisted by recruiter is not the same as writing a caption for your Instagram updates. There are things you should consider such as the template, opening statement, and career overview. You must put all the best qualities on a single paper to sell yourself because usually a recruiter only give a brief 10 seconds looking at each resume.

Therefore, you should be smart enough to write only relevant qualifications or else you will lose the opportunity to catch the hiring manager’s interest. If you are a fresh graduate seeking to get that dream job, here is a guide to write your first professional resume:

1. Know the audience

Resume is a marketing tool to sell your ability, experience, and accomplishment in order to snatch a job. You should make sure that its message is targeted to right recipients: employer and recruiter. Therefore, before writing a resume for job application, you should consider:

  • The company: including its history, products, services, culture, and recent developments.
  • The specific requirements: skills and experience.  

2. Choose the right style  

You should choose the best style for your resume. There are 3 styles of resumes in general: chronological, functional, and combination. Chronological resumes focus on work experience and list of professional experience from the most to the least recent. Functional style focuses on skills more. Yet, normally, a combination of both styles will work on your first resume. You can point out your professional experience while still draw attention on your skills.

Moreover, you should not forget to certain format on your resume. Normally, resumes have header, career objectives, statement, skills and abilities, work experience, education, and interest. Don’t forget to always highlight the skills and abilities that are relevant to the job.

3. Start with the basic

Before we move to the more complicated task, let’s start by writing the most basic information that should be written on a resume: name, address, phone number, and email address. Make sure to give a professional email address. An email address like mixblond113@gmail.com will not work and the recruiter might think that you are just joking around. Therefore, you should create a professional email right away if you don’t have any.

4. Personal statemen

Recruiters are not only interested in why you are applying for the position and what you can do. They are also curious in who you are as a person. Therefore, providing a personal professional statement on your resume is always a good start to let them know who you are. You can use these questions as a guide to write your statement:

  • Do you fit the company culture?
  • Is your personality and attitude a good match for the company and team?
  • What makes you believe you will land a job in that company?
  • What is so interesting about your life?

5. Job posting as a guide

The best way to summarise your skill and experience is to tailor it with job description. Many recruiters use applicant tracking system (ATS) to shortlist resume, especially if there are so many jobseekers applying. Therefore, you should be able to keep it simple and make sure to include some ‘keywords’ in your resume so the ATS can scan it. Usually, the keywords recruiters use are: hard skills and soft skills. The more you can match with those skills in the job description, the more chances you can get that job.

6. Keep it one page

The average duration recruiters spend to review a resume is 10 seconds. You should make it concise and lean by getting rid of all the fluff. As your first resume should fit in one page, you can only write relevant information in it. For example, if you are applying for a design graphic programmer but you have worked at a McDonalds for 1 year, it will be better if you don’t include that experience in your resume unless it is relevant.

7. Professional look

To impress the recruiter, you should give it a professional look. Make sure that your resume is easy to read by using: common font styles (cambria, calibri, or helvetica styles), give 12 to 14 font size, use appropriate spacing, no more than six highlight and bullet points, margins 1” all around, and left aligned format. However, if you are a graphic designer, you can impress recruiters by designing your resume as creative and unique as possible.

8. Use action and power words

Recruiters are more interested in reviewing resumes that are really dynamic and impressive in action. In order to give that impression, you should use the right action verbs and powerful words. Few examples of those words are achieved, created, generated, initiated, organized, introduced, identified, improved, resolved, launched.

9. Proofread your resume

Finally, never submitted raw resumes that have not been proofread. Before submitting your resume, make sure to always double check or ask your friend to review it. This process will give you clues whether your resume is A-okay to be read by recruiter or not. Also, you can be aware of the misspelling words that will make your resume look unprofessional.

Read also: Passion versus Skill: What Comes First in a Job Search?

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Finally, you get the opportunity to take one step closer to your dream job: an interview. Coming to the company building with all confidence you could muster, suddenly you find your palms producing excessive sweat while your breathing gets heavier. You get anxious as you study the questions and answers you have prepared last night, over and over again. To calm down, you try to convince yourself by whispering these sentences, I have prepared everything, I know everything about this company, I am qualified for this job, and My resume is good enough.

You finally overcome your anxiety, but is that enough to get you ready for the interview?

Maybe, because the fact that the hiring manager invites you for an interview means that your resume has caught his interest. However, more than good resume and excellent hard skills on paper, you need to demonstrate great soft skills too. In that case, you should get rid of these 9 behaviours in order to get accepted in the job you have always wanted:

 

  • Come late

It goes without saying that arriving late to a job interview can lessen your points in front of your employer’s eyes. Therefore, if you realise that you have a morning interview scheduled in the next day, you should prepare yourself by setting the alarm, waking up early, and getting ready for it.

Also, it is so important to not skip your breakfast. Why? Because, Lisa De Fazio, a healthy-lifestyle expert, said that breakfast is an important meal of the day. When you skip your breakfast, your blood-sugar level will go lower and it will affect your attention span which later will lessen your focus. As consequent, you cannot do your best during the interview.

 

  • Ignore the body language

During a job interview, putting your hands on the table is okay but not recommended; as it is better to put your hands on your lap to look more professionals. You should also mind other body language such as eye contact, heads, facial expressions, body postures, and handshakes. Poor body language can reduce your chance of getting the job as the interviewers pay attention to all your moves.

Aside from that, according to Gillett in Business Insider, among the biggest mistake people do during an interview is that they tend to “wishing that the job interview will end soon.” That being said, frequently checking your watch or looking at the clock will make it seem like you are eager to leave the interview room soon.

 

  • Poor word choices

Don’t use foul language! You might be excited because getting a job interview for the position you always want is a rare opportunity and you blurt out saying some foul words. Accidentally saying swearing words can indicate that you are a careless person and unable to calmly and thoughtfully deal with a situation. Therefore, you should be careful when you speak.

 

  • Showing boredom

Waiting for your name to be called and interviewed is boring. Everybody can relate to this. So how will you overcome the boredom while waiting? Checking your phone? Play online game? Or texting?

Most people will do the things mentioned above. Why? Because those activities help them overcome their boredom and pass the time. However, doing those things above will only make you look unprofessional and the recruiter might think that it is a good idea to remove you from their candidates’ list.

What else can you do, then? Show that you are genuinely interested to work for the company by reading the magazine or brochure commonly provided in the waiting room.

 

  • Being too informal

Let’s talk about the dress-code. You should not choose a “too formal” or “too informal” dress because your attire will tell a lot about whether you want to be taken seriously or not.

Dressing too informal will tell the recruiter that you have less interest in the company. On the other hand, wearing too formal clothes tells the employer that you do not research the company’s custom well enough so you might not be a good fit for the job.

 

  • Bringing too much stuffs

Bring only what the recruiter asks you to bring, most will only ask you to carry a copy of your resume and portfolio. Bringing too much stuff in your hands to the room can tell the recruiter that you are an unorganized person. So, leave everything else such as your water bottle or handphone in the car so you can be free to shake hands with potential employers.

 

  • Speaking too much

Stop being over confident! Naturally, people tend to talk more than needed because they want to impress the recruiters that they have certain skills and talent. Well, that is not a good thing to do as the interviewer might see you as long-winded candidate. Owing to which, it is crucial to always think before you speak, just keep it simple, give the interviewer an opportunity to ask you questions and only answer with relevant responses.

 

  • Being too grueling

Asking questions during an interview is important as it will show that you are interested in actually landing the job. However, only ask certain questions that will help you increase your employment opportunity such as, “How do you measure success in this company?” For that reason, you can list questions based on the job position you are applying before attending the interview.

 

  • Being shy

Lastly, you should swipe away your shyness. Being nervous 15 minutes before interview is normal. However, you should not show that shyness during the interview. Shyness can indicate that you are insecure and incompetence. A Harvard Business School professor, Amy Cuddy, suggested that if you are a shy person, you can use that to take your time before answering. She said “slowing down and pausing signals indicate that you feel comfortable, that you are deserve to be there, that you respect this interaction, that you are engaged, and that you are interested.”

Read also: Reality Bites: What to Do When Things Don’t Go as Planned

 

 

 

So you have completed your education and graduated from college or university, now what? Once you are no longer a student, you have to start your journey to the real world by sending out your resumes to various companies. Unfortunately, after waiting for days and even weeks, you have not landed any job as expected. You have already taken rounds of tests and attended various interview sessions, but it seems that luck is yet to be on your side.

This might not be something new that the entry-level job market can be tough to beat, especially for fresh graduates. Oftentimes, employers prefer candidates who have prior experience and knowledge in the industry, thus making it more difficult for raw talents like you to get their first full-time jobs. At this point, you might think, ‘How can I gain experiences if I do not get a chance to work first?’ Well, actually there is a way: internship.

Maybe you are thinking, ‘Is it still appropriate for me to do an internship? Isn’t it usually only for students?’ The answer is, it is not necessarily so. Even long after you have graduated, you can sign up for internship programs offered by many company. Not only the best way to gain work experiences and beef up your portfolios, doing an internship will give you a better shot in getting hired later. Still not sure? Here are some good reasons why you should consider becoming an intern:

  1. Gain skills and experience

Having a degree from prestige educational institution will not help much when it comes to getting a job. But experience is. Therefore, you should take an internship where you can put the theories you learn from school into practice and gain real experiences. As an intern, you will get the opportunity to observe how various roles in an organisation work while learning from experienced mentors. Not only that, you do need not be afraid to try out new things and make mistakes, because internship is the right time to practice the trial and error method.

  1. Explore various career options

Unlike a full-time job, an internship typically has a limited time span which usually revolves within a matter of months. This gives you a good chance to explore various career options and learn more from different industries. For example, for three months you can be an intern in an advertising company, then the next three months in consulting firm. This way, you will know the difference between each industry and how each job role functions.

  1. Figure out what you really want to do

Despite having graduated and holding a degree in a certain major, some people are still unsure of what they really want to do for a living. If this happens to you too, then an internship can help you to make the best decision. By trying out several different roles, you can compare the good and bad sides of certain job to then find the one that works best for you.

  1. Transition to the professional world easier

The real world is very different from college life. In the workforce, you are required to be a professional adult who is responsible for performing a task for the company and client. From internship, you can learn both soft and hard skills to do this task well. For example, you can learn public speaking while building confidence.

  1. Get your foot in the door

Internship is a great stepping stone that will help you get your foot in the door before finally really landing your dream job. By becoming an intern, you can build a network, something that will increase your chances of getting employed in the future.

Next read: 5 Good Reasons Why You Need to Start a Side Hustle

Getting your first interview can be a daunting experience, let alone when you have to do it online. Yes, the internet has been much of a game changer in employee recruitment, including in how hiring managers conducting a job interview.

Nowadays, conducting virtual interview becomes increasingly popular among employers. Embracing video and web-based technologies for screening interview with prospective candidates has been an alternative besides the traditional in-person meeting. Not only time-saving and cost-effective, conducting video job interview allows employers to widen the talent scope across the world.

However, the problem is quite classical. Not everyone is ready for video job interview. While many people are perfectly comfortable with the idea of talking in front of webcam, there are others who are totally webcam-phobic. The later type, webcam-shy person, usually displays symptoms such as being overly-nervous, stiff, and awkward when talking to the interviewers thorugh their laptops.

If you belong to the second type and need some advices for your next meeting, here are seven ways to ace in video job interview.

Prepare your devices

It might be quite obvious, but you have to make sure that you have everything you need for video job interview. Before the interview takes place, you have to ensure that all functions you need are running smoothly.

Turn on the computer at least 15 minutes before the scheduled, such you can check once again that all is well. It will include testing out your webcam, turning on the audio recorder, charging the battery, as well as checking the internet connection. If you are required to use certain video call software, make sure that you have installed and tried it out before the day.

Set the scene

You want the interviewers to keep their eyes only on you, not your surroundings. To help you get their full attention, you have to set proper background for video job interview.

Make sure that the lighting is good so it will not cast undesirable black shadow of your face. As for the room, make sure that it is quiet enough to do a conversation. If needed, you can put on ‘do not disturb’ or some notes about the interview on your door to prevent any unwanted visitor. People get distracted easily. Hence, ensure that nothing bizarre fills your background. Conservative white and plain background is the best option for it. You want the interviewers to assess your qualifications, not wondering who the funky singer poster on your wall is.

Pick up the right attire

While it is true that most video job interview do not require you to show full body, do not risk your employment opportunity by wearing casual bottom. Wear something dense and professional from head to toe, not only for the waist-up. You don’t want the interviewers to accidentally sneak peek your worn-out pajamas, right?

Avoid wearing clothes with busy prints, as it does not look good on screen. Instead, pick something plain in light colours. If you want, you can choose colours that you think you look good in it. Not only the attire, you also need to pay attention to your hair and face as well. Make sure that you have the look of their next hire.

Maintain eye contact

Most common mistake done in video job interview is that candidates tend to look out at the screen. However, you should stop doing so. Eye contact is not only applicable in face-to-face interview, but also in video job interview as well. Just pretend that the webcam is the interviewer sitting in front you. Hence, looking at it is like looking directly at the interviewer.

Stay calm all the time

Human makes mistakes, so do you. Don’t be thrown off by small errors you might make along the interview. When you realise providing wrong answers and would like to correct it, admit the mistake and re-state the answer calmly.

Be honest. If you think you cannot find a proper answer to particular question, just say so. Rather than rambling about something else, interviewers will appreciate your honesty. Focus on your answer, state it clearly and confidently, such that will make the interviewers nod their heads and thinks, ‘This is the talent I have been looking for’.

Start practicing

Just like the old mantra saying, ‘practice makes perfect’. To prepare for tackling questions, take advantage of various interview practice hacks scattered on the internet. Make sure to do your research about the company and everything related to the job you are applying.

Video job interview is an effective medium to demonstrate your proficiencies to the hiring managers. Although you might do it at your home, bear in mind that video job interview is no different from usual interview. So keep smile and be confident!

Next read: Should You Announce that You’re Seeking New Opportunities on LinkedIn?

When it comes to using social media for professional purposes, most people would agree that LinkedIn is a good place for jobseekers to connect with potential employers and find a job. If you are on the position of actively seeking for new employment, you can take advantage of the network you have built and get in touch with recruiters who search for talents in your field of expertise.

Among other features, the headline is probably the most crucial element of your LinkedIn profile. Headline is a 120-character descriptive column that will appear in search results along with your name, photo, and location. This section is the key if you want potential employers to visit your profile and find out more detailed information about you. To spark their interest to click on your profile, you should create a memorable and appealing headline by describing what you do and what you have to offer.

To let recruiters know that they are on job hunting, some people might put phrases such as ‘seeking new opportunities’, ‘looking for new challenges,’ ‘open for new roles’, or ‘considering new employment’ on their LinkedIn headline. By using such phrases, your profile will show up on the search results when recruiters type these keywords on LinkedIn search. The aim is to directly tell them that you are keen to explore new opportunities.

While it is obvious that you should make the most of your headline to entice recruiters and land a job, do you really need to state and indicate that you are seeking new opportunities on your LinkedIn profile?

On the positive note, advertise your availability on your headline could be a direct signal for recruiters that you are open for new employment. This will help them to find the right candidates who are really looking for job, instead of just guessing and meeting those who are not really interested in moving on from their current companies. Not mention, some recruiters do source for active and available candidates by typing related keywords on LinkedIn search.

However, announcing on LinkedIn headline that you are seeking new opportunities could also mean that you are currently unemployed. Some recruiters and hiring managers could interpret such statement as someone being too desperate about getting employed. Some other might tend to avoid candidates who put similar phrases on their profile, because they might not be interested in hiring someone who have been laid off from their job.

Additionally, using such phrases on your headline will not help your profile stand out from the crowd as it does not communicate specifically about your skills, work experience, career goals, or even the industry itself. Oftentimes, recruiters end up wasting their time for nothing when finding that candidate’s resume is not relevant with the roles they are seeking.

If you are currently employed, announcing that you are open to new opportunities is not a wise move, too. When your employer knows about this, they might wonder why, how, and when you want to intend to leave the company. Such presumption could create awkward relationship between you and your boss, even when you are still working there.

Towards the end, either you are currently employed or unemployed, it will be better to avoid putting such phrase on your LinkedIn headline. Instead, you can activate LinkedIn’s Open Candidate feature to let recruiters know your availability for job offerings. If you are on incognito search, your current employer will not find out this because LinkedIn will hide such information from your boss and only premium recruiters can see this availability.

Read also: 5 Healthy Work Habits for Healthier Office Life

So you have applied successfully for your dream job. After few weeks, you find an email in your inbox with the subject ‘Interview Invitation’. You open it up immediately with a happy feeling, only to be shocked reading those dreaded words: Group Interview. The solo interview can be quite unnerving in itself, how do you prepare to survive the group rounds?

Different from traditional kinds of interviews (conducted especially when there are many applicants for a job role that requires working in groups and public speaking skills), group interviews require applicants to gather in a single room at the same point in time.

While candidates often find this as an unsettling experience, employers view this kind of job interview setting as an effective method to screen out promising talents. Group interviews are highly efficient when a company is keen on hiring in large numbers, for many vacant positions, in a single time-frame thus reducing costs incurred on recruitment efforts.

The main goal of conducting group interviews is to test candidates’ demonstrative abilities of being able to work well in a team, be self-driven to take responsibilities for incorrect executions of the team, how they respond to each other, and if they are able to perform under pressure. By putting everyone in the same boat, employers are keen on understanding potentials of key talent and interpersonal skills.

In these few allocated hours on a single working day, hiring managers are able to decide if you are a thoughtful leader, a goal-driven worker, or an ambitious employee who is willing to throw someone under the bus.

During group interviews, applicants are posed with particular case scenarios to test their engagement levels with other members in a team to address certain issues and resolve the problem at hand in minimal time effectively. Here are some tips for applicants to stand out in a group interview:

First, dress up distinctively. Wearing something different will help the interviewer notice and remember you. This doesn’t mean you sport casuals for a formal setting or wear something too daring or extremes. Stick to simplicity and elegant dressing, this works well in most cases.

Second, make friends with other candidates. Make sure that you come early such that you can prepare yourself. Before entering the interview room, look around and greet other candidates. Introduce yourself and have a nice chat with them. Not only will this help you relax, but it will also help build positive vibes and perhaps derive more information about the competition and competitors.

Third, be a volunteer. In a large group interview, it could be difficult for interviewers to pick candidates one by one to speak up. So, they would like to see initiatives through volunteering to answer first. Use this as a chance to get noticed by the interviewer. This could be done either by raising your hand and leading the answer.

Fourth, involve everyone. Remember that it is not your own interview. Even if you do know a lot about the issue discussed, draw cautious restraints from talking too much, while allowing others the opportunity to speak.

Do not go overboard and overly aggressive because this can make you look like, you are putting everyone else down. Instead, showcase your good leadership and interpersonal skills, by inviting the most silent participant in the room to share their thoughts and voice their opinions on an issue.

Fifth, stay focused. In a group interview when everyone is keen to express and talk fast, it becomes extremely important for you to listen carefully to what others have to say. While it is important to deliver purposeful statements, do not get too busy with your own thoughts.

Rather, engage in the conversation and pay attention to minute details that others divulge. Write down the ideas you choose to convey for clarity in expression. So when your turn comes to speak up, you have lot more to say in brief using appropriate words.

Sixth, prepare questions. There could be a point when the interviewer invites questions from candidates. Make sure that you have done your research well about the company, before coming for an interview. This could help you bring many meaningful insights and relevant questions to be posed to the interviewer for discussion.

Most important advice to stand out in a group interview is practice. Be prepared for any possible situation that might arise during a group discussion, such as sometimes you might speak out of turn or the discussion might take a whole new direction leading to verbal debate. Do remember to always hold onto your stance on the issue and never let your guard down.

Article first appeared in Talentvis.

Are you thinking of switching career? Do you plan to re-navigate your career path and choose whole new and different profession from your current job? Watch your steps! If you are not careful enough, your next job moves might hurt your established personal brand today.

If there’s anything you need to pay attention to, during a job search is your personal brand. Whether you consciously build it or not, each person carries their own brand. A personal brand is something that will tell who you are and what you do. That being said, a brand does matter because it reflects your persona.

And if you are unable to demonstrate strong and appealing brand value, it might cost you an opportunity to land your dream job. Needless to say, developing a positive individual brand is imperative for everyone who wants to establish their position and enhance their bargaining power in the industry.

The problem, however, lies in the fact that building personal brand can be difficult to maintain. Given that building a personal brand is not something that you can do overnight, it can be difficult to change once it is established. Therefore, it becomes crucial for you to identify whether or not your current brand aligns with your career goals and values.

Sometimes, despite your best intentions, your job moves end up making your personal brand fall apart and lead you to nowhere when you are not vigilant enough. Learn from the following job moves that can hurt your personal brand to avoid making such grave mistakes:

  1.    Being inconsistent

Take a look at the job history on your resume. Have you always been walking on the same career path over years? Or have you been job-hopping from one company to another within short span of time? Be careful. Inconsistency will kill your personal brand.

Your future employers want to know who you are by looking at your track record, such that they know what to expect from you. If you show some inconsistent moves and behaviours, this will kill your job opportunity.

  1.    Stuck in the same position

While severe inconsistency will harm your brand, being stuck in the same position for years is not good for you as well. At some point on your professional journey, you need to step out of your comfort zone and move on. By exploring other opportunities in the industry, you will demonstrate that you are not afraid of challenges and always ready for better change.

  1.    Being too reckless

Think of the consequences before you take any actions. Make sure that before making any decisions that put your career at stake, you have taken everything into account.

You should bear on mind that being too reckless in making job moves will only undermine your personal brand. Therefore, you need to be thoughtful in choosing your words, initiating actions, and noticing the impact they bring.

  1.    Losing focus

Getting distracted easily will weaken the power of your personal brand. Rather than doing many things at once, it will be wiser to stand for one thing and focus yourself on it. You need to represent yourself as a determined individual who knows exactly what he is doing.

However, while you need to focus on one thing, you should never be close minded. Instead of limiting your horizon, you need to always open up to new opportunities and achieve personal growth.

When it comes to job search, there is no one-size-fits-all advice that can be applied by all job seekers. You might have known that the basic formula includes updating your resume, creating online profile, building professional network, and looking for job openings.

The thing however is, each person holds different perceptions and ideas towards what you call an “ideal job search”. Given the fact that each of us exhibit different personality traits and habits, it becomes but natural that everyone’s approach towards job search is uniquely different as well.

Rapid advancements in technology and Internet has opened up new ways of communication and provided myriad sources to look for jobs. However, despite the ease and comfort of accessing job vacancies on-the-go, landing your dream job continues to remain a challenge for most jobseekers. Even with plentiful advices available online, sometimes you find that these information does not fit your current situation. When this happens, not only should you rearrange your current job search strategy, but also take long to achieve your goals.

More or less, our personality will affect the way you perceive something, including the job search process. Only when you understand your own character, can you figure out the best methods you should adopt in the job search journey. If you are wondering which type of jobseeker you belong to, check out the following points and discover the one that describes you the best:

Bewildered jobseeker

If you ever think of something like this, “I don’t know where or how to start the search. I don’t even have any idea of what I want to do for a living,” then probably you are a bewildered jobseeker.

There are good chances that most fresh-graduates belong to this type. It can be overwhelming to think that everyone else knows exactly what they want as a career, while you do not even have one. Relax! You are not alone.

At some point in life, even the most confident individual was once uncertain about their own ability. All you have to do is look inside yourself and figure out what your true calling is. What is your passion? What keeps you motivated? Identify what makes you happy and start your job search from that point. Believe in yourself and eventually you will discover the job that best fits your personality.

Determined jobseeker

If you ever think of something like this, “I can picture what I want to be for the next five years. But, I don’t know how to get there,” then you are determined jobseeker.

The problem however is, while you might know what you want to achieve in the future, you still have no idea of how to realise it. Although you might feel determined when applying for a particular job role, actually you are terrified with the ongoing process or the outcomes.

If you doubt your own capability, then all you have to do is hone your skills and sharpen your knowledge. If you feel lack of adequate experience or education is impeding your progress to work in your dream job, then you should get necessary training, take up some skills certification programs, or even go back to school and pursue higher degree. Through this method, you can gain more insights on how to achieve your career goals.

Frivolous job seeker

If you ever think of something like this, “This job seems interesting, I’ll try apply for this. Wait! This one looks promising, too. Maybe I’ll just apply for this as well. All I ever need is to click ‘Submit’, right?” then you are at a risk of being a frivolous jobseeker. This type of jobseeker might know that they need a job, but do not do much to pursue it.

When it comes to browsing and applying for jobs, they always take the easy route. Upon receiving flashy job advertisements, they tend to randomly send across their resumes. They do not bother to check on the detail requirements, let alone proofread their cover letter and CV.

You should be careful if you find that these statements describe yourself. Do not take things too casually because it will send negative impression to potential employers. Hiring managers will know the difference between genuine and random applicants. Therefore, you do not want to make negative impression by carelessly sending across your resumes.

Passive jobseeker

If you ever think of something like this, “I love my current job. But I am always open to better opportunities,” then you belong to passive jobseeker. While this type is not really actively looking for job, they are flexible to any new opportunities. Passionate in their work, they are keen for bigger challenge and ready to make progress.