Job Hunting

November 2, 2007 at 11:43 am 2 comments

The time has come, at least for me, to start the job hunt. In my case, I’m looking for an internship, but the same rules apply. It can definitely be a stressful time, but there are some things you can do to make it a little easier.

According to Warren Allan Johnson of the Unsolicited Marketing Advice blog, the first thing you need to know how to do is get your foot in the door. This includes knowing who you’re trying to contact at a company and being persistent when trying to reach them.

Another important tool in the job hunt is networking. Many universities have a PRSSA chapter. The Kent State chapter holds a networking event at least once a year. This is a great way to meet professionals in your area. They can offer some great advice and possibly a future career opportunity.  If your school doesn’t happen to have a chapter, talk to your PR professors. Trust me, they know people.

Once you have made contact at a company, you won’t get much further without a stand-out resume and cover letter. The journalism program at the University of New Hampshire offers some advice:

  • Use inverted pyramid style in your cover letter. Keep it simple and to the point.
  • Always list experience before education on a resume. Almost all applicants will have a degree. The company is looking for someone with the skills and experience to meet its needs. This means you will also have to tailor your resume for different companies.
  • When writing your resume, keep it simple and neat. Use a standard font, avoid italics and boldface.
  • PROOFREAD! If an employer finds an error in your cover letter or resume, he or she won’t read any further.

If you do get called in for an interview, it’s your time to shine. First of all, you have to prepare yourself. Here are some suggestions from allbusiness.com:

  • Learn all you can about the company beforehand and showcase that knowledge during the interview.
  • Get directions ahead of time and make sure you look the part. You can’t go wrong with a suit.
  • Rehearse, practice your handshake, prepare answers to common questions and prepare a list of your own questions.

Monster.com suggests always bringing a portfolio with you. It also suggests marketing yourself well. I’ve always been told as a PR major to sell myself the way I would a client. Talking yourself up can be uncomfortable, but it’s important. Also, always follow up an interview with a thank you letter. This shows the employer you are genuinely interested in the position.

The job search can be nerve-wracking, but take a deep breath, be confident and go for it. If you don’t get the first job you go after, don’t get discouraged. Regroup, refocus and try it again. You never know, the next job opportunity might be better than the first.

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Entry filed under: Careers.

Mind Your Manners Research, Research, Research

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. juli sabistina  |  November 29, 2007 at 4:01 pm

    Hey Abby,

    I am a senior merchadising student at KSU. I came across your blog by Prof. Ewing. Your blog has been a helpful soure of information, as far as some different websites to go to for further information for tips on interviewing. That can always be a scary process but if you are prepared before hand, then it can turn out to be a successful experience. I was also reading your other blogs, and something else that caught my eye was preparing a portfolio. I ahd never thought about doing that but it could make the difference and set your apart from your competition. Thanks for the advice.

    -Juli

  • 2. Keith Patti  |  November 29, 2007 at 6:53 pm

    Abby,

    My name is Keith and I am a communication studies student who read your blogs and decided to comment on your job hunting one because I felt it’s one of the more relevant blogs to your audience.

    You write well for your audience (18-24, male and female college students). I felt that many college students would appreciate that you wrote in a concise manner, which wasn’t particularly time-consuming.

    If I had to make a criticism, I would say simply to keep in mind though that most of your audience probably has already heard most of this. It’s valid advice, yet some of it is rather obvioius. For example, arriving on time, finding contacts, etc. are all tips that the audience has probably learned in their courses at one time or another.

    I would suggest you stress more your ending. It’s unfortunately forgotten that it takes much more than just one interview to land a position, so it’s extremely important not to get discouraged because it’s going to be very easy to get discouraged, especially after following tips. I think including that most people will not land a job after their first interviews, but the only way one assuredly won’t land a job is to not try. Preparing your audience for that reality and also even adding that if one is turned down for a position that he or she shouldn’t take it personally simply because the company one is applying for is going through a downward phase would be good ideas.

    As you’re well aware, one of public relations’ top priorities is honesty, and that’s why I would suggest if you were to write another blog on job-hunting that you take a slightly more negative, yet honest, approach. Your audience needs to have cemented in its mind that it’s good to be on time, well-prepared, and relaxed, yet superseding all that is the need for the audience to be honestly informed, and the truth is, jobs are not going to be easy to come by, but being discouraged won’t make finding a job any easier.

    Thanks for taking the time to read my comment
    Keith

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