Whether you are fresh out of school and seeking your first job, looking to make a career switch, or perhaps you’re one of the millions of Americans unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic- the job hunt can be daunting and exhausting. It’s important to keep up with the times and stay competitive in the ever-evolving job market. Luckily, there are always measures anyone can take to maintain a leg up on the journey. Here are 6 ways to make yourself more employable:
Never underestimate the power of volunteering! Starting with the obvious, it just plain looks good. Having volunteer experience on your resume highlights your values, your character, and your work ethic, telling potential employers that you are community-minded and proactive with your time. Volunteering can also add some useful skills to your resume, especially if you’re fresh out of college with little to no work experience. It can create a safe space for you to learn, try and develop new skills without the high stakes of a work environment. Finally, it’s a great place to make networking connections, as well as build confidence.
- Use your online presence to your advantage
In a world run by the internet, your social media presence can be used as a powerful tool- both for good and for bad. There are lots of tips and guidelines for how to use social media effectively, but most importantly, be sure that your profile represents you and the brand you intend to create for yourself well. These days, potential employers can find anything on you with a simple google search, but don’t let that scare you. You can use this to your advantage. Create a stellar LinkedIn profile and keep it up to date. You might even consider starting a blog or vlog with well-researched content related to your field to impress potential employees.
- Learn how to nail an interview
Many great applicants have lost out on a job because they didn’t present themselves well in the interview. Take the time to learn successful interview techniques. Having impressive qualifications and a standout resume can get you in the door, which is certainly a feat considering only about 2% of applicants are invited for an interview. However, if the resume is what gets you the interview, the interview is the part that actually gets you the job. The key is to not only prepare, but also to practice! Be sure you research the company you are interviewing for and line up any questions you may have for them. Think through your answers to questions you anticipate being asked in the room, including your own “selling points” as to why you’re a great match for that specific position. Then, rehearse until you feel comfortable and confident, so your nerves won’t get the best of you.
- Expand your skillset
If you’re aiming high to reach your goals, the last thing you’ll want to do is to plateau. As your career evolves, take the initiative to acquire additional skills in order to support your forward motion. Sign up for an online course and take advantage of workshops, seminars, and courses sponsored by your employer even after you snag the job. It not only looks great but will truly enhance your work in a way that fulfills you and impresses potential employers. Don’t be afraid to branch out of your comfort zone in order to truly expand your skillset.
- Complete post-graduate studies
On that note, expanding your skillset might also lead you toward a deeper educational journey. One of the greatest steps you can take to enhance your career- and your life in general- is to never stop learning. Further your education by completing a master’s degree, an MBA or even something like an organizational leadership course. Such a degree will arguably make you more employable add you to a more exclusive pool of applicants, helping you to stand out and score an interview. Plus, the experience alone will benefit you in ways you may not even be able to foresee, from making connections to discovering new interests and beyond.
- Join professional associations or networking groups
Networking groups and professional associations keep you abreast of news, changes, and trends within your industry. They can also introduce you to likeminded people who can assist you in finding job opportunities, whether they are a colleague or a potential employer. Not to mention, being a member of a professional association adds loads of credibility to your CV.
The underlying key to making yourself more employable rests in your own initiative. The more you branch out, seek opportunities to gain experience, insight, and skills, plus cast your networking net far and wide, the more job interviews and offers you will find coming your way. Be it big or small, there is always something you can do to show your dream job what an asset you truly are.
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