We all have to join the workforce sooner or later. Some of us have been working since we were 15 or 16, maybe even a little earlier than that. Some have gotten a later start like 18 years old or sometime while in college. Lastly, there are others like myself who have never had a job before and is entering a part of their life where it’s crucial to dip into the workforce pool and experience all the struggles that come with the search. And man, there are some struggles!
This isn’t my first time searching for a job. Around the first time I started job searching was sometime after I graduated high school, and I eventually got an interview. My first ever interview was for Old Navy. Sadly to say, I didn’t get the job. A year or so later, I had my second ever interview for Pita Street Food. I just knew I was going to get the job. The interviewer even put a star by my name for her boss to see, but unfortunately this was another bust. Eventually, college got to become more of a priority as the classes became harder, so job searching took a backseat but, I’m back on the hunt and already want to pull every inch of my hair out.
WHY IS JOB SEARCHING SO DIFFICULT?
Job searching nowadays is all about who you know. If you don’t have anyone to help you get your foot through the door, then you better have some major impressive resume that’ll kick that door open. Even then, sometimes even with the most impressive resume, you’ll have a bouncer right at the door you thought you successfully entered ready to throw you right out. And God forbid you’re like me with little to no job experience. It’s damn near impossible to get a chance. Tell me, how does one get experience when you need experience to have experience but no one will let you get the experience you need so you can qualify for the job you really want that you need experience for? Confused? EXACTLY. Job searching is just a big confusing process.
HOW TO APPLY
There are a few ways to apply for jobs or look to see if some are available and how they can either help or make job searching a little more nerve wrecking.
Nowadays companies are putting their job applications online. This can be a good and a bad thing. It’s good in terms of it’s a little less work when it comes to going to each store asking for a job application like a girl scout asking neighbors if they’d like to buy some cookies. Also, if you’re not that great of keeping up with papers or have applied to so many jobs you can’t remember them all, usually job boards online keep up with that information for you. Some websites you can use to apply for jobs are SnagAJob, Indeed, Monster, etc.
Along with those pro’s of course come the cons, in my eyes anyway. Applying online doesn’t allow that face to face opportunity. It’s important for the employer to see who’s applying. Get your name and face out there, become a memory. A good way to do it, if you choose, is to go to the place you applied to check on your application. They’ll not only see your face but also how dedicated you are. Another con is how old some of the jobs might be. Depending on how often some of these job board websites renew their jobs, some of these could be old and not available anymore. If you really want to make sure the job is still available it’s best to call and be sure before applying.
I’ve never looked for jobs through newspaper, but I know you can look for jobs that way if you don’t have access to a computer or internet. If you see any that interest you, then you can call the company about applying or go to the place and ask.
Door To Door Approach
If you’re really dedicated and have the time, you can use what I call the door to door approach. This is when you go by different places asking if they’re hiring or how you can apply/ get an application. Now, like I mentioned before, most companies now have electronic applications but some do have paper applications if you so choose. This is also one of the best approaches for allowing them to see your face and who you are. As I also mentioned earlier, this is very important.
The con to this I will say is just the fact that it might be the more tiring approach.
Friend/ Family Member
This could possibly also be one of the best ways to get a job or at least an interview. If you know someone who is in charge of their own company, they could get you in and you might not even have to apply. If you know someone who works for a company, you can put in your application and they can put in a good word for you. Getting an interview is the foot in the door you need to show who you are and why you’d make a good member to the team.
TIPS TO HELP YOU ON YOUR JOURNEY
These are just a few things I’m either learning from job searching or that I’ve learned taking a business class in college.
Tip #1: Make a resume
There are different forms of resumes that you can choose from to fit your experiences, qualifications, etc. It’s good to Google which form is best for you, and yes there forms that are better for people like me who have never worked at a job before.
Tip #2: Always Check Up
After filling out a job application, check up and check up again. Make sure you call or go to the company and try to speak with the hiring manager. Make sure you let them know that you’ve applied and you’re checking up on your job application. It’s also important to find the times that the hiring manager is in or looking at job applications. DON’T STOP CHECKING IN. People apply for jobs all the time so it’s easy for your application to be pushed to the side and forgotten. It’s important to stay known.
Tip #3: Mock Interviews
During your job search, you should practice by doing mock interviews. This will help prepare for when you do get an interview. It’s good to be prepared and will help better with professionalism and can maybe even calm your nerves a little bit if you have an idea on what to expect.
Tip #4: Don’t Give Up
If you’re like me then you easily get discouraged. It’s why it takes me so long to get back to job searching, but you can’t give up. Yes job searching might end up the reason we all go bald, but hang in there. You’ll get that job soon enough.
Good luck to all my job searchers out there. Are you currently looking for a job like myself? Do you have any tips to add?