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Landing Your Dream Job!

By : Jordan Stosic

Madeline Ernst, a Reed College alumna, who is currently employed as a Communications Associate for Rick Miller Communications visited our amazing chapter the other night over Zoom to share her tips on navigating your career. 

Maddie describes her tips as a “Recipe Book” for landing your dream job. So as stated, follow this guide and your job search will be a piece of cake. 

Finding Opportunities

  • Networking
    • Internships, industry organizations and college courses
  • Company’s career page

    • Account Executive, Aras Creative Co.: “I’d even go as far as to apply on the website vs. on a third-party site. It shows me, as the interviewer, that you researched and navigated the website vs. just submitting your resume on the active listing page of a job-hunting site.”

  • Job posting sites: LinkedIn, Indeed and Glassdoor 

    • HR Coordinator, Halo Health: “If we are having trouble finding a qualified candidate for the role, we frequently use LinkedIn to reach out and message someone about the position. Having your LinkedIn profile updated and looking professional is one of the biggest pieces of advice I would give to anyone looking for a new role or internship.”

  • Hard work, creativity and curiosity 

    • What are 2-3 companies you’re interested in? Reach out to them to learn more and network. 

Securing the Interviews 

  • Resume

    • One-page, polished, proper tense and no errors

    • Include a headline highlighting your top three skills that are also relevant to the job you are applying to

  • Cover letter

    • Talk about a personal experience with the company or why the org. matters to you

  • Personal email 

    • “If the place just a big project say “I am looking forward to hearing more about X project, I found it so interesting that ____.“ Make the person know you have done some research and that you are interested in learning more about the work versus just offering up a background on yourself. This shows you are engaged and collaborative.“ – Account Executive, Aras Creative 

Preparing for the Interview

  • Research

    • Research the company’s values, mission, history, social media channels and any media mentions

    • If you have the names of the people you are meeting with, look them up. How long have they been at the company? What specifically have they done? Look to see what their job title is so that you can specifically ask questions about the work they do

    • Research frequently asked interview questions in your industry

  • Practice

    • Be prepared to provide 2 strengths and 2 weaknesses

    • “Practice what you will say when they ask you to explain your experience (be concise, play up all of your different skill sets that would help you in this role)” – HR, Halo Health 

Nailing the Interview

  • Do’s

    • Be confident and practice deep breathing

    • Bring a portfolio to the interview

    • Write down notes throughout the interview

    • Have smart questions to keep the dialogue going

    • Wear professional attire

    • Ask for clarity if you don’t understand a question

  • Don’ts 

    • Don’t speak negatively about a previous company

    • Don’t conduct the virtual interview in a noisy area

    • “It’s best not to try to be someone you are not, it will probably show through and you and you don’t want to join a company that wouldn’t like who you are anyway. Be relaxed and personable.” – Marketing, Halo Health 

Post Interview Tips 

  • Wait a day or two and send a thank you note (a handwritten letter goes a long way)

  • Send a LinkedIn connection request to the interviewer

  • “Stay engaged with the organization, like their post on social media. If you see a cool article come out about the business, it’s a great topic to follow up on send your congratulations.” – Account Executive, Aras Creative
  • “If you were working with the recruiter or someone who is helping schedule the interviews but not actually contacting them, send them a thank you email as well. I said up many interviews that I don’t sit in on in whenever someone sent me a thank you for setting up their interviews I always forward this on to the hiring manager. Little things like this will give you a leg up on other candidates.” – HR, Halo Health

Maddie is currently participating in our Speaker Series, so be sure to check that out!