Last week was a very exciting one for the Webinar Program! A new record was broken, with 955 registrants signed up for a single session (pause for reaction).
What content could draw in so many alums, you ask? ”Resumes, Interviewing, and the World of Work,” with local staffing agency CEO Robb Mulberger (Parent’13), author of The Ultimate Job-Seeker’s Guide. We can see why Robb’s webinar received so much attention since it’s hard to encounter someone who DOESN’T need advice in either of those three categories! I am pleased to say that Robb did not disappoint. With 40 years of experience in the staffing world, Robb had a plethora of insights that I believe every professional should be aware of during their job search.
Below were some of my favorite presentation points. You may think they are obvious, but when you are in the rush of working a full time job and preparing to find another, it is amazing what can be overlooked. For Robb’s entire presentation, visit our YouTube channel.
Sarah’s Favorite Insights:
1. Resumes are screened by people who in a minute or less put them in to three piles: Yes, No, and Maybe. You get in the yes pile by succinctly stating what your skills are and how you will use them to help the potential employer. Leave out the frills and DOUBLE CHECK SPELLING/GRAMMAR!!
2. You need to write and rehearse an opening statement you will find a way to inject in to the first few minutes of every interview. Whether you are or aren’t looking for a new job, you should always be crafting your personal story. Thus, it should be very easy for you to create an opening statement with a theme that you can circle back to throughout your interview. It’s all about continuity of the brand!
3. Research the organization. Not only should you not arrive to an interview ill prepared, but you should think outside the box. Research the company AND its competitors. Read not only the latest article found on your Google search, but the ones from further back. If you are interviewing at, say, Georgetown University, you better know about the McCourt gift! Search buzz words and values that you believe align with the company, and feel comfortable speaking to each of them. Find EVERY interviewer and their superiors on LinkedIn and see if there is any kind of common ground you can bring up during your conversation. Alumni always come and tell me about candidates who were not well versed on the company/industry prior to an interview, and they are offended by the lack of attention to detail.
4. Job security resides in skill sets. Hard skills: Technical/software knowledge, basic business principles, and oral/written communication skils. Soft skills: Problem solving abilities, people skills, and a general curiosity to realize solutions. How do you build competitive skills? Never stop learning. Always be on the lookout for opportunities to increase your knowledge in a specialty area so you can continue to build out your resume and add to your professional story. If continuing your education in a classroom setting is not an option for you, realize that there are plenty of other opportunities to hone hard and soft skills. Take advantage of networking events, webinars/seminars, and professional conferences, especially if your employer will foot the bill. If your current job is not helping you sharpen the skills you desire, find volunteering opportunities that focus on your areas of interest.
5. Lose the dark tinted glasses or cell ear piece. KIDDING! I know none of you would even think about wearing either one of those items to an interview.