With my first days at my new job passed, I am looking back on the whole job process. One with ups and downs, but with a major reward at the end. A job that fits me perfectly!
When I got the call offering me a job, I was thrilled! However, it wasn’t easy to get there. If you want to know my frustrations and struggles, read my blog post about major hurdles here.
I would love to share some tips on managing to secure that dream job. Because I know it is hard to believe you can land a dream job when you are in the job seeking process. For everyone who can relate, some tips for keep going on.
- Don’t give up
When you are dealing with many rejections for jobs you thought would excel in, don’t start lowering your standards. I got close to just start looking for any job. And the people around me were also advising me to give up looking for a job in the field I wanted to work in.
However, I felt sad when looking at other jobs. Writing cover letters felt insincere. I could not promote myself for a job I wouldn’t be motivated for and it also doesn’t pay off.
Keep looking for your dream job, with patience it will come along.
- Find a good match
You will only land a job where there is a good match between you and the job you are applying for. If the job doesn’t feel like you, you probably also won’t get it. So, follow your gut feeling in applying for the right jobs. It is worth putting more time and energy in positions you feel confident about than to apply for everything that comes along.
- Stand out
Recruiters will never know how awesome you are, when you’re never invited for an interview. So stand out of the crowd early. I did this by creating an original resume for every job. Mine was an infographic, using the colour scheme of the company (easily findable on the website). I used Piktochart for this, but there are numerous ways to create an attractive resume.
Also think about what makes you special, and mention this in your cover letter. For me in Australia it was my European background (which is great on social issues), the languages I can speak (3 opposing to 1) and the degree I have (master’s anyone?). These are aspects my Australian competition would not offer, so I tried to leverage it.
- Build up a reference list
Australians are big on checking your references. If you are like me new to a country, it is hard to present these references.
Find a way to connect with people in your field willing to give you a reference. I started volunteering at Sacred Heart Mission, a charity helping people who are homeless. I volunteered in their communication team and was able to grow a network over there.
Their reference was essential in getting me a job offer.
- Get experience
Find a way to gain experience in your field and in the country you live in. By volunteering as a communication officer, I could show examples of my writing in English, for an Australian organisation. Without some relevant experience it will be hard to give good examples to new employers. However, don’t get stuck in unpaid work. Do it only as long as it benefits you as well.
- Do what you love
Nothing shows more confidence than being happy with yourself and what you do. I was stuck in a negative spiral when looking for a job. I felt all my free time should go to applying for jobs and writing cover letters. But I was being rejected more and more because I was losing confidence more and more.
Take a step back and spend time on your passions. I volunteered in communications for a great organisation. But I also took the time to read a good book and started writing again. This was not only a good exercise for me, but I felt more relaxed and better about myself. Don’t get sucked up in the job hunt and take time for yourself. It will show in interviews and you will get a job easier.