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What you should have before your next interview to outshine the competiton!
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How many times did you feel confident after an interview, you knew you had awesome answers, your experience and skills aligned perfectly with the job description, yet you got no callback? Or, my favorite, you get that horrendous email stating how the company received many applicants, and while yours was impressive, they have chosen a different candidate. Boooo Hissss. I have 3 suggestions to help you stand out.
1. Interactive Resume Website
An interactive resume website is exactly what it sounds like. It is your experience on a free-standing website. It embodies every section of the traditional resume but in a "clickable" format. It is an awesome tool for hiring managers to go directly to a section instead of fishing through your resume, looking for keywords. If there is an area that they are specifically interested in, "Fluent in Spanish" for example, they can click and dive into a short descriptive paragraph or two about your 3 semesters in Guadalajara with your host family who enabled you to sharpen your tongue by solely communicating in their native language. Though you will never forget them, you may want to forget to mention the local hottie you fell in love with.
2. Get a career coach
You never know what you don't know until you learn you didn't know it. Yes, that may be a little backwoods style quote, but it carries much weight. After college, I had my very first career coach who taught me some tips that seemed simple, but that I had never considered. For example, I wrote my resumes exactly like the ones in my business textbooks. I was proud of my work! Once she reviewed one, I found out that my resume paled in comparison to... BASIC. She taught me how to reword my resume so it reflected growth and spoke to my strengths in a personable and professional way. She prepped me for each interview and held me accountable to write follow-up letters to my interviewer within the appropriate window of time.
Later in my career, she helped me pinpoint where I saw myself in 5, 10, and 20 years. Through our collaborative efforts, my desires, her expertise, we were able to lay out a step by step career path that I stayed true to. After each job offer, I felt like Rocky at the top of the stairs, rejoicing in his excellence! I DID IT!
3. Research the company
This concept is an article in itself, but to give you the basics, throughout my career, I researched each company before an interview and found something... ANYTHING I could mention or provide that I didn't think any other candidate would know or possess the skill to complete. If the job posting mentioned PowerPoint as a requirement and "creating sales presentations" as a daily task, I would create a short 5 slide PowerPoint with graphics and powerful bullet points to sell myself to the interviewer. Technology today makes this tip so simple to share on your phone or tablet. p.s. IT WORKED!
As articles go, you must follow the tips to truly see how they heighten your chances for success. Be impressive! Invest in your first impression.
Jaymie S. Keith
Trinity Direct Resume & Career Services
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