Now You Need a Job: Things to Do Before Applying for a Job

Things to Do Before Applying for a Job

Now You Need a Job: Things to Do Before Applying for a Job

The thought of getting a job will not suddenly hit you one day. No, life is not a movie. Your present situation has a way of telling you to make a move. You may be a fresh school leaver,  or someone hungry for a job switch. Additionally, circumstances may have caused you to lose a once juicy job position. All these are fine. Just snap out of the blame game and act.

The most important thing is that you get over your current emotions and make the next move. You need a job and this discussion will prepare you for that moment. You don’t want to spend all your time only to discover that job hunting requires a strategy schools may never teach you. There are many things you will learn here that school doesn’t get to teach you. The following tips from the experience of Esther Adeyemi will walk you through the things to do before applying for a job.

Things to do Before Applying for a Job

  • Prepare your Mind for the New Reality
  • Strategic Networking
  • Hone Your Skills for the Job Role
  • Strategic Candidate Positioning
  • Become a Problem solver
  1. Prepare Your Mind for the New

Esther Adeyemi is that employee who suffered a job loss after a pandemic. The job was her first experience as a Marketing Executive. She got it through referrals but now it’s gone.

For Esther, the whole experience felt like starting afresh as she had never really hunted for jobs. The little she knew about job hunting didn’t seem to matter at the moment. Everything seemed new. Preparing for the new helping her navigate the troubling waters of job hunting.

For many applicants, it’s easy to present job hunting in the regular “CV-Interview-Job” pattern. You will believe it’s just about applying and attending interviews. This thought process limits applicants even before they start applying. Like Esther, it’s important you change your mindset to avoid repeating mistakes that can be avoided.

Jobhunting is not as rosy as it is presented. In this age of mental health awareness, it is essential you understand rejection is nothing bad or evil. It is in fact part of the process.

For instance, Esther seemed so driven about sending in some applications. But her first attempt got her zero response and a few automated rejection emails. This is entirely normal.

Not all your applications will turn out great responses from recruiters. The interviews may not go as planned. But that is perfectly okay. Master the art of separating yourself from the rejection emails if they don’t go well. Learn from your mistakes and plot your next move. As she would later reveal, Esther was merely sending her CV to any opening she saw. This is a mistake on her part.

Prepare to show employers you can deliver results. Prepare to clean up your social media to reflect the personality they seek. Prepare to review the art of Cv writing from well-written CV templates. There are affordable CV templates. Prepare to learn new skills. Prepare to work harder. You have to make extra efforts to stand out from the crowd. You will also go the extra mile to spend time and resources growing yourself and buying things that will improve you and your self-confidence. 

Job hunting becomes easier when candidates see themselves as salespeople going to the market… Why? You see the salesman will do all he can to sell his products. Your self-motivation is really an essential ingredient that will build your discipline in job hunting. Make job hunting a task on its own. 

2. Strategic Networking

You’ve probably heard of the increasing importance of human relationships. Yes, it’s true.  But when it comes to job hunting, the approach is more strategic and purposeful.  Interestingly, Esther’s very first job came directly from a college friend who recommended her.

She seems out of recommendations. Nothing is forthcoming. Now she needs to expand her network.

Job hunting becomes easier when candidates see themselves as salespeople going to the market. Okay maybe as someone about to save the world. Why? You see the salesman will do all he can to sell his products. Your self-motivation is really an essential ingredient that will build your discipline in job hunting. Make job hunting a task on its own. 

Act like you have no backup plan except to get the job. For example, the salesman employs all methods including networking and expanding his connections to make a sale. Most times, he establishes relationships with people closer to his potential customers. You should do the same with your potential employer. This move gives you a better chance of getting into their circle of influence before they even call for interviews. It’s achievable because you begin with an extra influential person from the employer’s network.

Get serious and begin to treat your skills like the product. Launch your networking attempts on places like LinkedIn and even visit the company’s website. Connect with the company’s employees and influential persons. Start productive conversations that show your interest in the company. This is why it is important you learn the art of networking using powerful language.

This approach allows them to share powerful insights with you. Some will even go ahead to recommend you for a job opening. This is what happens when you step away from the crowd and employ unique strategies. There is a reason only one person gets the job from the many applications.

 

Things to do before applying for a job

3. Hone Your Skills

Let’s get back to Esther. Before the job loss, she was a happy marketing executive creating the necessary marketing attraction for her company’s software products. Now the pandemic hits, there is a sudden change. Marketers aren’t really in need. Digital marketers are in high demand. Now she needs to make a swift move.

If you’re switching jobs there are possibilities that you have acquired skilled experience. However, this may not always be the case. Some jobs may require more abundant experience and skillsets. This may be different for school leavers. As a fresh school leaver, you will confront questions on your experience and the value you can add. 

You see the speed of change today is alarming. Digital transformation and work technologies are bridging the existing gaps in industries and markets. The developments have their advantages. 

But they also make skill upgrade a necessity for career growth. Esther knew she had to quickly take a course on Digital Marketing. She needed to learn newer ways to help companies reach out to their markets. The digital strategy offered a new way. Learning it was not an option. It was a necessity if she wanted to stay competitive and relevant in the new job market. The new systems were changing everything. They also meant that companies will begin to confront newer or even stranger challenges.

They will fight to keep up. This is where your skills will be needed. Importantly, you need to know the right skills to sell and begin to hone them for the right jobs. Similarly, you will have to learn the specific digital tools and technologies that rule your industry. Digital skills and mastery in recent technologies give candidates a better appeal.

For instance, the ability to use communication and collaboration tools like Zoom, and Slack is redefining the new era of work.

 

As you seek new job opportunities, you will be tempted to try many things. You will want to send a broadcast of one job application to many companies using one CV. Another suggestion may be to pay CV writers to write for you rather than learn how to write one using CV templates.

4. Strategic Candidate Positioning

Companies hire because they have problems and gaps to fill. It’s only normal that prepared and capable candidates win their hearts. This was a major turning point for Esther Adeyemi. She purchased a good CV template. Then she begins to tailor them as well as her interview answers to present solutions to potential employers. Of course, some applications took her time. But they soon got her more invitations than her previous strategy. 

She was creating brief custom marketing solutions for each of these companies. This is because job hunting is a game. Confident problem solvers who are able to communicate brilliantly tend to win it. 

As you seek new job opportunities, you will be tempted to try many things. You will want to send a broadcast of one job application to many companies using one CV. Another suggestion may be to pay CV writers to write for you rather than learn how to write one using CV templates.

The challenge with paying to get your CV written is that the expertise is shortlived. It won’t be there to save you during the interviews. Do not fall into the trap of using the regular free and cheap CV templates. The internet makes everything so cheesy these days. Free means “everywhere.” Every job candidate knows that your special strategy. Remember the plan is to position yourself well as exceptional. Do away with free things and teach yourself to invest in the process if it will benefit you. 

Shortcuts may sound amazing. But like Esther, you will learn that they are like wearing a blindfold while shooting targets. Is it worth it? Not taking charge and investing in a process that will pay you, might be some of the things you want to do away with. If you are a fresh school leaver it is important you step out of your comfort zone.

Employers thrive in the real world where only problem solvers get to make money. It is only expected that they hire better problem solvers too. Interestingly, one major strategic position you will want to adopt as a job seeker will be that of a problem solver.

5. Become a Problem solver

Become a problem solver. Yes, even if it hurts. Never let your application fall into the pile of “the regulars.” Forbid it right now. I demand you. Yes, maybe I need to get stern with you. To shine as the “Most Desirable Candidate” you will work to provide value. Using one CV and cover letter to apply for multiple jobs says otherwise. You are simply saying all companies are facing the same problem.  That’s a huge assumption for the professional you claim to be and a painful shot in the foot.

This may be the norm for many applicants. But it is not strategic positioning. One of the lessons you will learn in the job hunting adventure is that an investment of your time and resources pays the best interest. Shortcuts are easy but they do not always end right.

Esther, what a regal being she must be. The Queen goes the extra mile to create custom solutions for each company she sends her CV. Such peasantry! They couldn’t even help but schedule appointments, asking to negotiate salaries.  

Like a doctor would do, perform your diagnosis. This time, do it as a problem solver. Research the company, look at their background and social media. Evaluate their performance and that of their competitors. Such a perspective will help you build better CVs and take charge of any interview situation. Taking the time to customize your CV for every well-researched job opening increases your chances. 

Get Esther’s All-powerful CV template. Tweak it for each position.

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