Tag Archives: job hunting

How Recent Grads Should Handle Their Social Media

For recent college graduates who are now fully invested in the job search, social media can be either a blessing or a curse.

On the one hand, it can provide invaluable networking opportunities, chances to connect, to stay in touch, and to discover new opportunities. This is especially true if you know all the right social media tools to use.

Then again, when it’s used unwisely, social media can undercut your professionalism—and cause you to lose out on those opportunities. It’s all but certain potential employers will check out your online profiles before hiring you—and if all they see are those slovenly photos from your most recent spring break, that could be trouble!

So what should recent grads do about social media? And, what shouldn’t they do? Here are a few tips from the Grammar Chic, Inc. team.

What You Should Do on Social Media

We’ll start with the positives.

  1. Check your privacy settings. There’s nothing wrong with sharing personal photos with your close friends—but are those photos also visible to potential employers? Are you sure? Check your privacy settings to be sure.
  2. Search yourself. Do a quick Google search for your own name, and simply see what comes up. This might call up some older social media posts or Tumblr entries you want to delete!
  3. Create at least one strong, professional social media profile. Use LinkedIn to put your best foot forward, and to convey your professionalism and passion.
  4. Double and triple check your spelling and grammar. Sloppy writing on your LinkedIn page may cause you to get looked over for someone just a little more detail-oriented!
  5. Familiarize yourself with LinkedIn’s job search tools. Again, there are many great resources out there, for anyone willing to learn them.

What You Shouldn’t Do on Social Media

Now, the flipside.

  1. Don’t share a lot of controversial opinions. If you like talking about religion and politics on Facebook, be very careful with those privacy settings.
  2. Don’t complain. Even if you’re currently working a retail job you don’t especially care for, keep negativity off your feeds. Nobody wants to hire a complainer!
  3. Don’t think a LinkedIn profile replaces your need for a resume. While some information can be the same, for a successful job search, you really need both!

Whether you need help building that resume or getting your LinkedIn profile up to speed, our resume writing team is here to help. Reach out to Grammar Chic, Inc. today to discuss your job search needs; contact us at www.grammarchic.net or 803-831-7444.

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How to Write a Post-Interview Thank You Note

Job interviews are all about making a positive impression—and that’s something you can do even once the interview itself is technically over. Within a day or two of your job interview, send a thank you note to the person you interviewed with. It doesn’t matter whether the interview was a triumph or a total disaster; it doesn’t even matter whether you still want the job or not. You never know when you might encounter someone from that organization again, and it’s simply wise to make sure you leave that strong impression.

Before You Leave the Interview

Even before you exit from the interview, one thing you can do is ask everyone you’re interviewing with for a business card. That way, when you send thank you notes, you don’t leave anyone out—and you don’t get anyone’s name wrong! At the very least, take an extra minute to confirm that you have all the names right before you leave the office.

How to Write Your Thank You Note

As for actually composing your thank you note, here are some tips to keep you on the straight and narrow.

  • Send an individual thank you note for everyone you interview with—not just one blanket thank you for the group. That personal touch goes a long way!
  • If at all possible, send your thank you note within 24 hours of the interview—48 at the very most.
  • Mention specifics. Make note of something about the company you found to be exciting, e.g., “I was excited to hear about New Client A,” or “I think new app B sounds like a tremendous asset.”
  • Highlight a particular skill or achievement from your own resume that you think will align with the position in question.
  • Affirm once more why you feel as though you’re a good fit for the position.
  • Make sure each thank you note is unique! Remember that the people who receive them may compare them, so you don’t want each thank you note you send to be a generic form letter.
  • Keep the letter fairly brief and straight to the point; you want to reaffirm your thankfulness for the interview and your interest in the position, but you don’t need to belabor things. A good thank you note is usually a paragraph or two.

Always Send a Note

Again, it’s always good to send a thank you note—even if you don’t really want the position. Keep those impressions positive—and your bridges from burning.

By the way: Sending your thank you note via email is almost always acceptable, unless you know the company to be especially formal or old-fashioned—like a law firm, perhaps.

And if you need help composing a robust, effective thank you note, we encourage you to use our team. Grammar Chic, Inc. can help you craft the perfect resume, cover letter, and yes, even the perfect thank you note. Reach out to us today to learn more: 803-831-7444, or www.grammarchic.net.

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Is Your LinkedIn Picture Helping or Hurting Your Job Search?

 

iStock_000008874687XSmallIf a picture’s worth a thousand words, then your LinkedIn profile shot must be nearly as important as the profile itself; you want a compelling resume and some judicious keywords, sure, and ideally you’ll have endorsements aplenty… but if you’ve also got a lackluster or unprofessional photo, then all your optimization efforts may be for nothing.

Some of the basics of LinkedIn profile photos you probably know: Get a professional headshot, if possible. It’s a worthy investment in your career. And always avoid photos that look like they were taken on Spring Break. “Slovenly” and “dead-drunk” are not the adjectives you want people assigning to your LinkedIn page!

But even beyond these basics, there is much strategy that goes into selecting the best LinkedIn profile picture—and if you select carefully, you can get a picture that actually enhances your career prospects rather than holding you back.

Acing Your LinkedIn Profile Pic

Some suggestions:

Appear approachable. Yes, you want to come across as professional, and no, you don’t want to look like you’re at a frat party… but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t offer a smile or try to convey some warmth and friendliness. Remember that people are looking not only at your skills and credentials, but also at what kind of a co-worker you’d be—and nobody wants an unapproachable colleague.

Don’t be upstaged in your own photo. Including a photo you took during your trip to the Eifel Tower is fine, but make sure it is a picture of you—not a picture of the Tower in which you happen to be waving in the background.

Be truthful. It’s the same advice you’re given when you pick a shot for your online dating profile: Don’t misrepresent yourself by picking a photo that’s 30 years old! You don’t want recruiters to be shocked or caught off guard when you go in to meet with them in person.

Dress code matters. You know that old advice about dressing for the job you want? Well, it applies to your LinkedIn profile picture.

Avoid selfies. Even if you’re a particularly good self-photographer, it’s usually pretty evident when a photo is a solo job—and there’s still a great deal of stigma attached to selfies. Avoid any unwanted connotations by getting someone else to take your photo.

Be smart in picking your profile picture—and yes, at the same time, make sure your profile is properly and fully optimized. To learn more about the latter, contact the Grammar Chic career team at 803-831-7444, or www.grammarchic.net.

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How to Get a Job When You Haven’t Had One in a While

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When you’re out of work for a long time, it can make it that much harder to jump back into the workforce. There are countless reasons why you might withdraw from the rat race for a while—maternity or paternity leave, health concerns, family needs, a stab at entrepreneurship—but ultimately, the reason doesn’t much matter. Reentering the work force is always going to prove challenging.

So say that you haven’t had a job in a couple years, but now you’re ready to get back in the swing of things. What steps do you take? How do you ensure that you find a new job as quickly and as smoothly as possible?

Get your LinkedIn profile up to date.

First things first: Employers are going to know that you’ve been out of work, but you don’t want them to think that you’ve been out of the loop. Spend some time going into your LinkedIn page and fully optimizing it—providing some succinct yet precise information about your previous employment history and your different skillsets. Try reaching out to some old colleagues and co-workers to get some LinkedIn endorsements and recommendations.

Get your story straight.

When you interview for a new position, you’re probably going to be asked why you’ve been out of the workforce. Spend some time thinking about what you’re going to say. Rehearse an answer so that you can respond without seeming flustered or defensive about it.

Think about your goals.

Your goal may be to find work—nothing more and nothing less—but it’s probably best for you to have a slightly clearer career trajectory in mind. At the very least, come up with a couple of specific jobs or job titles that you want and focus on achieving them. Without goals, your job search will simply be aimless.

Have encouragers in your life.

Finding a job is always tough, not least when you haven’t had one in a while. You may start to feel desperate or frustrated—but if you let it show, that will only hurt your chances. Make sure you have some friends to build your confidence and remind you that you’re just as qualified and just as deserving as anyone.

Get an updated resume.

It’s amazing how quickly resume standards can change. An obviously out-of-date resume will cripple your prospects—so invest in yourself, and in your career. Call the Grammar Chic team and get an updated resume today. Reach us at 803-831-7444, or www.grammarchic.net.

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