The First Steps to a new job is very crucial. In this post, we’ll cover how to find that perfect job, as well as what you can do to get it. This includes identifying your passion and skills, crafting a good résumé and learning how to tell your story to potential employers. You will learn to find job easily by writing a good CV that highlights your qualifications and soft skills which will place you on the recruitment shortlist.
Define what you want
Whether you’re entering the labour market for the first time, or are ready for your next career transition, the first step when looking for your dream job is simple. Define what you want, what is important to you. From experience, finding a job is a lot easier when you focus on what you love and enjoy doing and match that with the industry or companies that offer that kind of job. Try this little exercise:
Aside money, list five things you want from your dream job.
Make the List (You can Use a Notepad on your phone or computer)
What is on your list? Do you like to design and draw? Do love working with children? Do you love to sell outdoor? Do you love to teach and coach others? Perhaps what you want is a freelance role something that gives you the flexibility to work from home.
Connect Your Passion
This exercise is not just for fresh graduates; many working class people find out that there is a huge disconnect between their jobs and their passion. They are working hard just for the money but deep down on a personal level, joy and satisfaction is missing. If you are in that situation, you need to clarify your primary passion and motivation and then find a way to align it to the new job you seek.
So again I ask you, what is your skill? What is your passion and drive? What kind of job resonates with your personality?
There are three ways to answer this question.
- Examine yourself, what ignites your passion; what do you enjoy doing so much that you can do it for free?
- Take a personality test. There are lots of personality tests online that will help you clarify your skills and talent. I took one 25years ago as part of my junior high school career guidance class. Believe me, the result was on point. I still have a copy of that result in my library.
- Talk to your friends, family and acquaintance. Ask them to tell you what kind of job they think fits you.
Identify Your Skill
Now that you have clarify the kind of person you are and you dream job, it’s time to take it a step further by identifying the skills you have at the moment. There are two kinds of skills-‘hard skills’ and ‘soft skills’.
Your hard skills are things that can be quantified and measured like a degree in journalism, years of experience in sales and marketing, academic achievement and specialized training that qualify you for employment. These must be related to the kind of job you seek.
Your soft skills are the valuable qualities that employers will consider as a plus to the job you seek. Examples of soft skills are ability to organize people into a group and lead teams, ability to make friends and influence people, ability to read people’s need and empathize with them, communication and linguistic skills like being able to speak two or more major languages. A lot of employers are testing people for these soft skills because work is no longer as mechanized as it used to be. The best way to highlight your main skill is to put it in the context of challenges or tasks you have handled in the past and how you deploy the skills to resolve issues or take advantage of an opportunity. Social work and volunteer services in religious settings and societies can come in handy here. These skills if well-crafted tell would-be employers to put you on their recruitment shortlist.
Next, CV Writing Tips
Writing your CV comes easily once you have followed the steps above. So take your time and prepare a well-crafted CV that tells employer about you-who you are and the kind of job you are looking for.
Your CV should contain a brief career goal or objective section where you will state the kind of job you are looking for. Next you want to highlight your education and qualifications. Make sure you start from the most recent and arrange them chronologically. You also need to highlight your soft skills under a title that say skills to let your CV stand out, you may write a brief story with say 3 sentences stating the challenges you overcame with your skill sets.
Lastly in your CV, provide your bio data, work experience and references.
Get In front of the Recruiter
If the companies you desire to work with specify the method of applying for the vacant role, then submit your CV in the required format, through the required platform. That is the first recruitment test most job seekers fail. For instance, the recruiter may ask you to send your CV as a PDF document and send it to a specified email. Where that is the case, you must follow the instructions to the latter. Don’t send an MS Word doc when PDF is required and don’t send to the company’s contact email when a dedicated mail is provided. Some companies have dedicated career page on their website and others use job boards like www.provenability.com.ng to recruit. Make sure you follow the specified route. For more advice on what to do with your CV, you can also read How to find a Good Job in Nigeria.
That said, there are times the recruiter didn’t specify the method of application. That gives you the flexibility to get creative. Prepare your CV and cover letter like an executive proposal. Type them neatly and send it by mail or deliver it in person to the designated office. Make sure you write to impress and stand out from the pile of Résumés.
In my next post titled Get Ready to Persuade Your Potential Employer I, will share vital tips for communicating clearly and persuading employers during interview sessions.