Job Search Tips You Haven’t Heard Yet

By now most everyone knows the basics for a job search – have your resume ready and written to current standards, submit a cover letter specifically for the job you are applying for and show up to the interview on time.

What you may not realize is that there are small things that also must be done to ensure job success. These ideas came to me while sitting at the unemployment office and looking at my fellow unemployed Americans.

The first thing I noticed was the age of the group – most of us were over 40 and the next biggest group was under 20. Of course, you can’t change your age, but there are a few things you can do to mitigate the effect age has.

No one hiring will admit that age plays a role, but we all know it – otherwise, why would certain age groups be protected? ‘Business Week’ has an article outlining the protected groups here.

It is important for me to point out that putting your best foot forward is NOT about changing who you are – it’s about making a good first impression and getting a paycheck. After you get the job and have proven your value, you can decide if the “new” you is worth keeping or not.

I recommend coloring your hair if it’s gray. Go for a subtle color and one that complements your skin tones. This can reduce the appearance of your age by 10 years.

This article highlights the value of making small changes – “Want the Job?” The man in article now looks 10 times better and he got the job. To quote the Career Builder article: “Jack will be the first to tell you that his new, fresh hip face and image gave him a fresh, hip attitude that potential employers couldn’t resist. His story of being a middle-aged man who finally figured out how to land a great job in this troubled economy is so inspiring that still another professional field is opening up to him: that of public speaking.”

Wear clothes that show you are up to date if you are over 40 – but don’t try to wear 20 something’s styles.

If you are under 20, avoid the latest fashions. Go for the basics – slacks and button collar shirt. You could even add a jacket if applying for office work.

A really excellent article regarding the importance of appearance by Diana Pembeton-Sikes can be found at: http://www.career-intelligence.com/management/ImageHurtingCareer.asp. The Career-Intelligence site has a lot of good tips and advice for the job hunter.

The next thing I noticed was that most of the unemployed were over weight. This is a (excuse the pun) big issue. Employers want healthy employees. You may not know this, but over weight employees raise insurance costs.

Now that you have plenty of time on your hands, starting an exercise program is the right thing to do. Not only will you get in shape, but the physical activity reduces stress!

An added bonus from weight loss is the feeling of accomplishment which will add to your positive outlook – making you a more attractive prospect (again, excuse the pun).

I highly recommend this program that shows you how to lose the fat and keep the muscle.  The FREE7 Secrets of Permanent Fat Loss and Fitness” report is very good, and I use the suggestions myself.

From personal experience here are a few things to do that are obvious. But, let me tell you, as the search wears on, the stress builds and things happen!

Always research the company and have questions – no matter what. This is very easy to do now that the Internet has us connected 24/7 to virtually every place on planet Earth.

The company expects you to know what they do, how long they’ve been doing and what their plans for the future are. If their website does not have these answers, you have your questions!

Always take the time to thoroughly inspect your appearance before leaving for the interview! I can not add enough emphasis about the importance of this step!

Look for stains on your clothes, missing buttons, loose hair strands, and then check yourself for food between the teeth or on your face and neatly done hair. Make sure everything is as it should be. Don’t trust that it is – double check and take your time.

I lost out on a job because it required that the employee have a high attention to detail. Which I was sure I did, and stated as such on my resume.

Imagine my horror when I discovered that I had sat through the interview – with the Director and Executive Director - with my shirt on backwards!!

Yes, it was noticeable, because an associate of mine pointed this out to me when I visited her to tell her about the interview. I thought I would die from embarrassment…I also knew the job was lost.

So, let me repeat – always thoroughly inspect your appearance before leaving the house to go to the interview.

For a free three page PDF report giving more tips click here.

Learn a second language. This is not as difficult as you may think and will add a bonus to your resume. Bi-lingual employees are more valuable and in demand. Your local library will have CD’s to borrow, if you can not afford to buy a program.

Make your resume stand out. Don’t make it weird, but it should get the employers attention. They usually only give a resume 5 seconds to grab their attention. If you aren’t getting the amount of interviews you would like then your resume may need help. Up-to-date resumes can make your abilities stand out – check it out and buy a copy so that you will be noticed and hired!

Well, that’s about it for now. I will keep bringing you information to help you with your job search as I find it. Together, we can make a difference. Take care and see you soon.