When you are fresh out of college, it can be easy to make a lot of mistakes during your job search. We all have made them, and in this difficult job market, it is more important that ever to find ways to set yourself apart from the rest of the applicants. Employers love to hire recent college graduates, but keep in mind that they will most likely be taking a close look at your grades.
There are some common mistakes that many new job seekers make. By avoiding them, you can increase your chance of landing the job you want.
Here are 5 mistakes that recent graduates often make:
- Letting your parents contact potential employers- Don't laugh. You would be amazed at the number of applicants who involve their parents in their job search. Your parents may have some wonderful advice for you and be an invaluable resource, but do not allow them to speak to a potential employer. If they have a hard time with this, ask them kindly to back down. You want to show an employer your merits, and leaving them with the impression that you depend on your parents to take care of things for you doesn't leave them with much confidence in your abilities.
- Clean up your social media- Go through all of your social networking accounts and take down anything that you wouldn't want a new employer to see. Trust me that they will Google search you and they will see the photos from the frat party. You know, the one you were blasted in? Yeah, take it down. If you are tagged in other people's photos, take the time to look them over and make sure that they reflect you. If not, remove the tag.
- Build your professional network- Even if you don't have many professional friends, you have parents or aunt, uncles and grandparents. Tell everyone you know that you are looking for a new job. Let them know the field you are shopping for and ask them if they know anyone who is hiring. Never underestimate the power of a strong professional network.
- Always say thank you- At the end of an interview, always remember to thank the interviewer for their time. You should send a written thank you note after your interview. There is no excuse for bad manners and showing them that you are familiar with professional etiquette will impress them.
- Change your voice mail greeting- When you were in college, having a funny voice mail greeting or a caller tone was great fun. But when you are expecting calls from prospective employers, change your greeting to a more professional one. And get rid of the caller tones. A hiring manager doesn't want to hear your favorite song when they are trying to contact you. Just let them hear the ringing sound. They will appreciate it. Also, if someone calls you for an interview and you aren't in a place where you can have a conversation, just let it go to your voice mail and call them back later. It is better to not pick up than to have them have to listen to you while you are shopping with friends or ordering coffee.
By following these tips, you can set yourself apart from the other applicants and hopefully get the job you have been looking for. It takes a little patience and creative thinking, but you got through college so finding a job can't be harder than that.
By Melissa Kennedy- Melissa is a 9 year blog veteran and a freelance writer, 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.