For college students, informational interviews are vital. Before you send 100s of email applications into the void spring semester senior year, make sure you develop a few key professional connections outside your internship supervisors. Get some one on one time with professionals you admire by requesting a conversation over the phone or over coffee. Unlike a job interview, informational interviews allow for more of a dialogue.
The Niche Movement Founder Kevin O’Connell shared the hard truth about hearing the word “no” in our blog How to Handle Rejection in Business. Now, we present you with our Go or No-Go? Job Search Checklist. Rather than listening to rejection, this checklist flips the script and grants you the power to say “no” to a new job opportunity--giving you the tools to push forward in the right direction on your professional journey.
In my 10+ years of working with, advising, and interviewing college students, the number one area where students can stand out and sound more professional upon their age and experience is being prepared to answer one of the most common questions. Though often overlooked and rarely prepared for, “Do you have any questions?” will be asked 9 times out of 10.
I have been on both sides of an interview, and throughout my time in the “real world” I have learned and confirmed that having a list of prepared questions will set you apart, especially if you are interviewing for an internship or entry level job.
Here at TNM, we seek to inspire the community and help others create positive changes in their lives. Recently, to go along with this, our founder Kevin O’Connell taught a monthly course at General Assembly titled Career Shifts: Find the Work You Love focused on helping a variety of professionals realize a career transition is possible and where to start. The truth is, there are so many people in the same boat who don’t realize others share these struggles and doubts, particularly in their professional career. The second truth is that there is a way to overcome it. This is why TNM continues to share these stories. The following is an anonymous letter, from a young professional in the D.C. area to Kevin who attended his class and is in the process of switching jobs and seeking change. It is both honest, transparent, and relatable, as well as reassuring in away. A “dream job” or perfect “work-life balance” may not be in your life right now, and that’s okay.
Does it feel like all of your friends have jobs and you’re going on interview after interview but nothing seems to line up? Getting frustrated, jealous and worried nothing will pan out before you graduate? We get it - we’ve all been there! Going through the job search process is not easy. It can be a stressful time but don’t give up, think outside the box and know what you stand for. You are not in this alone and reach out to the free resources that your campus offers and get more involved in your community. Small changes can make a big difference and can lead to your first full time position.