Feeling lost in your job search? Here are 20 things that hiring managers wish that you knew.
There's no denying that looking for a new job is tough. In fact, job hunting is one of the most stressful things that you can do. There is so much information available on how to to it better, it can be a challenge to take all of the information and filter out the bits of advice that are going to work best for your particular situation.
Recently, US News published some things that hiring managers wish you knew, and I though that many of them were really valuable for any job seeker to here. In my last post, I showed you the top 10 things that hiring managers wished you knew, and here are 10 more:
- We don't like being stalked – Being enthusiastic and following up after an interview is expected and even desired. That being said, hiring managers don't want to be called several times a day and have their email boxes filled with follow ups from the same person. There is a line, so if you are calling several times a day or cold-calling employees to find out information, you may be ruining your chances.
- We actually care about candidates – Although sometimes it can be frustrating when you don't hear anything after an interview, most hiring managers actually care about the people who apply for their job openings and will do their best to give feedback and let you know when the position is filled.
- Cover letters give you an edge – Many people aren't sending cover letters anymore. I'm not sure how this practice fell out of favor, but a well written cover letter can score you a lot of points when you are applying for a job you really want. The letter should be short, no more than three paragraphs, and it should tell the interviewer why you are a good choice for the job.
- You can be too early to an interview – Showing up more than five or ten minutes early for an interview can be a negative. Hiring managers are alerted when you arrive, and they may feel pressured to stop what they are doing to come out and greet you. Even though you know you are early and you aren't expecting to be seen before the scheduled time, the manager will feel slightly guilty about leaving you waiting. And that isn't a great way to start an interview.
- Leave out the subjective descriptions on your resume – Don't tell the reader why you are the perfect fit for the job, show them. Any type of subjective descriptions get written off in the interviewer's mind. So instead of saying that you have great leadership skills, list how many people you have had working under you and specific examples of your ability to lead.
- Your resume should answer just one question – Even in the descriptions of your past jobs, you want to answer the question “What did you do in this job that someone else wouldn't have?”. Keep in mind that your resume should be your advertising campaign, explaining why you should be hired.
- Even new grads need work experience – Internships and part-time jobs can be invaluable for showing actual real world work experience. If you don't have any experience at all, you may want to consider volunteer work or anything that will give you some hands-on work experience.
- We think about your personality – When hiring managers are looking to add someone to their team, they are thinking about how your particular personality will mesh with their team and their corporate culture. Sometimes being a good fit is more important than having every skill they are looking for.
- We want you to talk in the interview, but be brief – If you tend to ramble, you should try to practice keeping your answers brief. When interviewers are looking at a candidate, they are also judging their ability to follow conversational cues and get to the point.
- Be honest in the interview, but don't dish about a bad boss – The interview isn't the place to spill about how much you hated your last boss. Negativity always makes you look bad, and taking the high road costs you nothing. Remember that your professional reputation can be damaged by bad mouthing others, but being know as someone who always has something nice to say can only make you look better.
What did you think about this list? Are there other things you think should be included? Let me know in the comments.
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By Melissa Kennedy- Melissa is a 9 year blog veteran and a freelance writer for ManhattanJobsBlog. Along with helping others find the job of their dreams, she enjoys computer geekery, raising a teenager, supporting her local library, writing about herself in the third person and working on her next novel.