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6 Ways to Prepare Yourself to the Next Great Job

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You might have been laid off recently, or you are on a career move. Do not fall into depression because of you sudden change of employment situation, and engage yourself in these six activities.

Volunteer

Those skills you kept thinking you might be able to learn on past jobs are out there waiting for you in the world of volunteering. One person volunteered to build a data base for a group and learned to use a tool that they couldn’t get training for on their jobs. That tool was the deal maker in their resume for a step up in their career. Another person volunteered as an actor in a community fundraiser. Where interviews had been disappointing and matched his fading level of energy before the fundraiser, interviews after were energetic. Shake yourself up a little.

Buy a new outfit for interviews

Maybe clothes don’t really make the man or woman but the impression you make can make a huge difference. During a previous downturn, a fellow in his fifties was getting the old “over-qualified” line in the interviews he could get. His wife said, over breakfast one morning, “We’re going out to buy you a new suit.” He protested about spending for any item that was not absolutely necessary. She stood her ground and said it was absolutely necessary. They picked out the most expensive suit he had ever owned the night before the interview that got him the best job he’d ever had. His attitude was different. Perk yourself up.

Get in touch with your network

If you made the dreadful mistake of getting so busy that you’ve lost touch with old friends and coworkers, get busy rebuilding those bridges. Don’t feel self-conscious about getting back in touch when you need them. Don’t ask for a job. Let them know what you’re doing and find out what they’re doing. The young person you mentored on a job a while back could be the VP of Engineering for a software developer now. A network is a two way street. You could be the one your contacts need the next time around. Keep it healthy and energetic. Don’t put it on a back burner again.

Get up to speed on social networking

Communities like LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and others offer an assortment of opportunities for getting involved and meeting new people. While you’re getting up to speed on them, don’t shoot yourself in the foot by contributing anything you would not want n employer to see. HR departments include social networks in their research. That wet t-shirt contest might not fit the preferences of a conservative employer with just the job you’ve always wanted. Do check out discussion groups in your field. Don’t connect with people who have brown paper bags for heads or weird bios. Make your connections with people in your field who can carry on a lively conversation about your area of expertise. Let people know you’re looking in your status blurbs.

Get that certification you haven’t had time to get

How many times have you wished that you had time to go for certification in your specialty? Professional associations and colleges have an assortment of certifications to offer. When his last assignment for the Navy was a base closure, a Naval Officer received the equivalent of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award for an extremely successful base closure using the techniques he learned in APICS certification classes that he took the time to take. That training and the award led directly to his first civilian job after retirement. Get ready to take a step forward in your career while you do have the time.

Get professional resume help

When you are looking for job, your resume is your most powerful weapon to score that dream job of yours. Most people think that writing resume is an easy job. However, more often than not, they are wrong. They end up submitting a messy and unimpressive resume which is quickly thrown into the trash bin.

Don’t let your resume get treated like that! A good resume is an investment for your bright future. At Style Resumes, we know what we’re doing. We’ve helped thousands of job seekers get their dream job by giving them an impressive resume and cover letter that made employers feel in love with them. Get in touch with us and let’s craft that perfect resume!

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Ultimate Tips to Ace Any Job Interview

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If you have an awesome resume or professionally written and active LinkedIn profile, you are getting tons of interview calls. Then, how do you ace that interview? According to a hiring manager, candidates aren’t judged on how well they do their jobs; they’re judged on how well they describe how they do their jobs.

Therefore, if you’re a candidate looking for a job, even a passive candidate, remember that how you present yourself matters. First, understand that all interviewers are attempting to evaluate the following:

  • How skilled you are and how you applied these skills on the job
  • If what you have accomplished is comparable to what needs to be accomplished
  • How you would fit with the team, work well with the hiring manager, and fit with the company “culture”
  • Your level of drive, initiative, and motivation
  • Your upside potential

While all of these factors are important, how they’re measured is pretty unscientific. Techies overvalue the depth of a person’s technical brilliance. Just about all non-techies overvalue the candidate’s first impression, appearance, warmth, and friendliness. Most managers overvalue their intuition and gut feel. Just about everyone has their own pet questions and private techniques they swear by to decide yay or nay. And right or wrong, everyone makes their assessment on all of these things based on how well you communicate your answers. Given this state of affairs, here’s some advice on how to not blow the interview. It starts by communicating better.

Talk in paragraphs, not sentences

The big idea is to talk for 2-3 minutes in response to any question. Short one or two sentence answers are deal-breakers. In these cases, the interviewer has to work too hard to pry the information out of the candidate, and since they don’t know what information they need pry out, it will likely be wrong. So talk more than less, but also remember to give no more than 2-3 minutes per answer; otherwise you’re considered boring, ego-centric, and insensitive.

You should practice the multi-paragraph response approach using the SAFW structure below. Then use the SMARTTe or STAR acronym to clarify the example.

  • SAFW – just Say A Few Words. To format your basic answers start by making a general opening Statement, Amplify or clarify this opening with a few sentences, then provide a Few examples to prove your opening point. End your answer with a summary Wrap-up and some hooks to get the interviewer to ask a logical follow-up question.
  • Give SMARTT Examples. For the example chosen, describe the Specific task; throw in some Metrics to add color, scope, and scale; add Action verbs describing what you Actually did; define the Result as a deliverable; put a Timeframe around the task, describing when it took place and how long it took; describe the Team involved; and then describe the environment including the pace, the resources available, the challenges involved, and role your boss played.
  • Use STAR. This is an alternative approach for interviewers asking behavioral questions. When they ask you to give an example of when you used some behavior, skill, or competency, they’ll follow up by asking about the Situation, Task, Action taken, and the Result achieved. You can beat them to the punch by framing your responses the STAR way.
  • End with a Hook. Don’t spill everything out at once. You only have 2-3 minutes, so leave a few key details unanswered. This will prompt the interviewer to follow up with some logical questions. A forced hook is something like, “Is this type of project relevant to what you need done?”
  • Remember the Big E for Example. If you forget all of this, don’t forget to give lots of examples of actual accomplishments to prove every strength and neutralize every weakness.

Interviewers really like it when they don’t have to work too hard to figure out if you’re any good. Well-constructed answers provide insight into your intelligence and potential, your enthusiasm and motivation, your ability to deal with people, and of course how competent you are. Most important of all: your ability to influence others to make important decisions starts by influencing them to hire you.

Get interviewed for your dream job

Before worrying about the interview, first you have to think how you could get the interview! One of the best ways to get a lot of interview calls from the right company is to submit an excellent resume, tailored to the position you are applying for. Sometimes, crafting a resume might be even harder than mastering the art of interview, so why not leave it in the hands of professionals?

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A creative resume could also help you during the interview. When you submit a creative resume, you have stolen the interviewer’s attention from the beginning. Then, the interviewer will be much more enthusiastic about your prospects at the company when he/she is interviewing you.

At Style Resumes, we are well-equipped with the skills to craft a perfect resume that will get you the right job. Get one step closer to your dream job by checking out our products now!

How to Get a Job If You Have Zero Experience

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Fresh graduates often find themselves trapped in a vicious cycle: you can’t get experience if you don’t get a job, but you can’t get a job if you don’t have experience. So how do you solve this dilemma? Below are a few pointers on gaining experience even without having a job, so you can land the best possible position.

Volunteer

Working your way into your dream career will require work, diligence and patience. But until you land the job of your dreams, consider volunteering opportunities that could help build a good foundation for the rest of your resume. One way to start your career on the right path is to choose a company that’s just begun to grow, like a startup. Volunteering for a company with big ideas and little capital involves a certain amount of risk, but getting in on the ground floor could give you more freedom to suggest new concepts and projects.

If you opt to volunteer, it’s important to set clear boundaries. You may be new, but that doesn’t mean you should let someone take advantage of you. Set a schedule and a time frame for your volunteer efforts, and work as hard as you can during that time; but stop when your job complete—unless, of course, they offer you a paid position, which is possible.

Advance Your Degree 

If doors still aren’t opening for you, consider going back to school. For instance, those who are looking for more advanced positions in the school system might consider an online master degree in education. Earning a degree online doesn’t tie you to a specific geographical area, and can give you greater flexibility with your schedule. Some companies who say they are looking for experience might overlook this requirement if you have an advanced degree. Also, the projects you do in graduate school can be counted as experience in some fields.

Develop Professional Network

Some of the best job opportunities come through a strong professional network. Join online groups, forums and conversations relating to your field. Explore professional organizations in your geographic area that are industry specific, and consider joining. Attend trade shows and conventions to make face-to-face contact with companies in the industry you’d like to join. You want your name and face to be in the minds of those who are offering the jobs, and the more networking inroads you have, the better your chances of having success in finding a job.

Revamp Your Resume 

You can draw attention away from your lack of job experience by adjusting your resume to focus on the skills you have. For example, Instead of a “Work History” section, you can put in a “Professional and Academic Experience” section. Choose a functional rather than chronological format as you wait for job experience to add.

At Style Resumes, we have helped thousands of fresh graduates and industry professionals land their dream job. We will not only revamp your resume and present the best of you; we will also polish your LinkedIn profile and create an impressive web portfolio for you.

Get in touch with us and get ahead of other job-hungry fresh grads!

Resume Secret: Quantify Your Resume

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Suppose you’re reading a resume and you see the following statement: “Supervised a team that installed a new customer service tracking system.” Well, that’s nice. What does that force the person to do? He has to ask you about that in the interview just to get more basic details, potentially wasting valuable time and costing you the job. That, if you get the interview at all.

Now, suppose you read this instead: “Managed a team of five that selected and implemented a new customer service tracking system that reduced lost sales for the company by $1.5M in the first year.” What would you think of that? If you were the hiring manager, which person would you hire based on the statements alone? If you’re like most people, you would definitely hire the person who writes the second statement.

The power of numbers

The second statement is powerful because it tells enough of the story that an interviewer can ask you for more details about this significant accomplishment. Besides that, it stands out from all the other resumes containing statements like the first one, because it talks about what your employer really cares about – MONEY. Well, the main purpose of business is to make money. Without profit (or without breaking even for a non-profit), there’s no business, which means no jobs.

What the number implies

If you quantify your experience, you absolutely vault over your competition. Non-quantified experience says you showed up, did some stuff, and drew a paycheck. Not exciting, and unlikely to get the job if somebody else quantifies his experience.

On the other hand, quantified experience says you didn’t just take, you GAVE, and in a significant way. It also shows that you are capable in meeting the company’s goals.

How to do it right

Now that you know the importance of quantifying your resume, try to quantify your experience whenever you can. It’s not as hard as you might think. Just remember that three things count as quantifiers:

  • Dollars you added to the bottom line
  • Time you saved the company
  • Any other numbers that add to the “he uses numbers” impression

Money is, of course, money. That’s a no-brainer. If you initiated and spearheaded a project that increased corporate profits (or departmental profits, or office profits, or location profits – you get the idea), that’s fantastic. Highlight it using real money numbers.

Ask yourself the worth of what you did, from your employer’s perspective. Did a particular action save money? That’s quantified! Did it bring in more revenue? That’s quantified! Did it produce an operational improvement, such as shorter turnaround on customer service requests? That’s not quite quantified (in terms of dollars), but it’s close! Don’t know a dollar amount, but know an improvement percentage? Use it! It’s better than nothing. Quantify whenever you can, and get as close to dollars on the bottom line as you can. That’ll get you rave reviews from your current boss (or a raise!), and will make it easier to get your next job.

Leave it to the professional

Most people think that writing resume is an easy job. However, more often than not, they are wrong. They end up submitting a messy and unimpressive resume which is quickly thrown into the trash bin.

Don’t let your resume get treated like that! At Style Resumes, we know what we’re doing. We’ve helped thousands of job seekers get their dream job by giving them an impressive resume and cover letter that made employers feel in love with them. Get in touch with us and let’s craft that perfect resume!

Professional Resume Writers

Surviving the First Day of Work

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So, here comes the first day. Just like your first day of school, you’re nervous. You want to make a good impression, but you don’t want to come across as trying too hard or make any first day blunders. How do you strike that all important balance and more importantly, survive your first day?

Be Prepared

Preparation will help you feel more in control of your first day. Choose your clothes the night before, bearing in mind the impression that you want to make. If you don’t know what the ‘dress code’ is, going smarter is wiser than going too casual. You can always adjust your attire after that all important first day. Have a good night sleep and set your alarm in plenty of time for the next day. Even if you feel nervous, try to have some breakfast as this will help you feel more comfortable when you arrive.

Stay Relaxed

Your new company has hired you to be you. Of course it can be nerve inducing starting any new job, but try and remember that they have chosen you and they won’t be expecting you to “perform” on your first day. Being relaxed, friendly and professional is the best way to make a good impression with the various different staff of a new company. Don’t feel that you have to suck up to your boss, or be best buddies with your colleagues by the end of the day. Taking things slowly will allow you to get a lay of the land and a sense of the culture of the company.

Ask Questions 

Your first day is all about getting to know where you are working and who you are working with. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. You need to learn and understand the company and where you will be fitting in.

Get Involved

If you are asked out to lunch with colleagues or to work on a project, it is worth diving in and getting involved. Getting involved will give you the chance to get to know your colleagues, and for them to get to know you.

Smile!

Your first day can be terrifying. Between trying to impress, asking the right questions all whilst remembering everyone’s names, remember to take a breath and try to smile. Though you may be nervous, don’t forget that the team will also be wondering who the new guy is and may be nervous for different reasons!

Get a new job with the help from Style Resumes

These advices will work if you have a new job. What if you have always hoped for one, yet have not been able to get it? Give your resume a face lift and watch how your fate changes.

Studies have shown that hiring managers spend just six seconds looking at your resume before determining whether you are a “YES” or “NO” for their company. Make those short seconds count; submit an impressive resume!

At Style Resumes, we are well-equipped with the skills to craft a perfect resume that will get you the right job. Get one step closer to your dream job by checking out our products now!

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