Interview Do’s and Don’ts

Interviewing can be the most stressful aspect of the job search process, but it doesn’t have to be! Here’s a quick checklist of the most important Do’s and Don’ts to be aware of before going in for your next interview.

Do:

Research the company
Come to the interview with a prepared list of questions tailored specifically to the company and position. This will communicate your interest and make you stand apart from applicants asking more general questions.

Re-read job description
Adapt the verbs and strengths used in the job description to fit answers that may apply to your previous experience and qualifications.

Use the STAR method
The easiest way to remember how to respond to situational interview questions is to use the STAR method, which stands for: Situation, Task, Action, and Result. You can begin to use this method for your answers by first explaining the context of the overall Situation. Then you’d move on to describe the issues of the Task at hand, and what specific Actions you took to solve it. And lastly, detail what you learned from the end Result.

Don’t:

Be negative
It’s okay to explain the certain challenges of a past position and what you’ve learned from those experiences, but speaking poorly about a company or an old boss will only reflect badly on yourself. Keep all your answers in a positive light.

Fumble on responses
Rather than using filler words such as “um” or “uh” before responding to a question, it’s perfectly acceptable to say “let me think about that,” and collect your thoughts before beginning to speak. This will convey your confidence and ability think strategically in the moment.

Forget about body language
First impressions matter. So it’s paramount that you remember to make eye-contact and smile when first shaking hands with your interviewer. Furthermore, avoid crossing your arms, slouching, or nervously touching your hands or face throughout the interview as these movements can show lack of seriousness or relay nervousness.

For more tips and tricks feel free to check out our blog and to search for job opportunities, visit our website!

Fall is a Time For Change

 

Changing your career path can be a scary and overwhelming decision. However, if you are unhappy at your current job or uninterested in your current career path, a career change may be the proper fix. Changing your career is a natural life progression – it is common and expected, so don’t be alarmed when the thought of changing your career crosses your mind. Rather than feeling intimidated or worried about your career transition, understand that there are several steps you can take to ensure that you start a career that you will love.

The first step you should take when exploring new career options is to get a full and complete understanding of yourself. You should know what you like and don’t like, what motivates you, and what type of work environment you enjoy. Know what you are passionate about and what excites you. If you have a better understanding of yourself, you can explore careers that specifically fit you. You may find it useful to research a variety of careers that center around your likes, dislikes, passions, etc. In the future, finding the perfect career fit will make you more productive and happier.

Once you have researched and found some career paths that you believe would lead you down the road to success, it’s time to analyze your current skills. Make a list of what skills you possess – whether it’s leadership, creativity, or analytical skills. You can then tailor these skills to apply to your new career path. Furthermore, knowing what skills you do possess will show you what skills you may need to improve. Understanding what skills need to be improved will allow you to start taking the necessary steps to actually improve those skills.

Now that your skills are perfected, it’s time to start applying. Brush up on your interview skills and make sure your resume is ready to go. It’s important to understand that finding a new career won’t happen overnight. It’s going to take hard work, dedication, and perseverance for you to land your dream job and start down your new career path. Make sure you have people who will support you – whether it be family, friends, or a mentor.

Changing your career is exciting and intimidating all at once. For your next career move, let TWG help you! Check out our website or call us at (361) 883-3535 to see how we can cater to your needs and help you change your career path!

Maximizing Your Summer Job

 

Having a summer job or internship is a great way to gain real world experience and get hands-on learning. Because summer employment typically only lasts about three months, it is important to make every day count. You want to learn as much as possible and jump on every opportunity presented to ensure that you make your summer job worthwhile. Follow these three simple steps to ensure that you maximize your summer job!

 

Be a self-starter.

Often time employers allocate more time than necessary for a task. If you finish early, ask for more work! When you take initiative and ask for more work, chances are that your employer will be more than happy to give you something else to do – therefore giving you another opportunity to learn. It is also important to ask questions. It is very typical for a company to have a specific way of doing things, but it’s okay to ask why. A majority of the time, your boss or manager will be impressed with your curiosity and be willing to explain to you why things are done a specific way. Again, this gives you another opportunity to learn.

 

Network.

Being the “new guy” in the office can be awkward and uncomfortable. However, if there’s one thing that most people have in common, it’s that they love talking about themselves. Reach out to your coworkers and make an effort to get to know them. Engaging with others will not only make work more enjoyable, but it doubles as an excellent way to network with others in your field. You already have one thing in common: your company, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to find common ground on other topics as well. As important as it is to make these connections, it is just as important to keep these connections even after your summer employment has ended. Keep in contact and continue to grow these relationships – it will help you in the long run!

 

Have fun.

This may seem obvious and overstated, but having fun in the workplace is vital to success. There is a strong correlation between those who have fun in the workplace and those who are successful. Typically, the more fun you have, the more successful you are. “Fun” comes in different forms for different people, so make sure you find your own fun. It may be watching a silly video during your lunch break or sharing a new joke with a coworker. Whatever your fun may be, embrace it. It will make work more amusing, and besides, who doesn’t want to have fun?!

 

Although summer jobs are short, there are still plenty of opportunities for both personal and professional growth. If you spent your summer job being a self-starter, networking, and having fun, it’s safe to say that your manager would be more than happy to write you an excellent recommendation. If you’re looking to find a job, come check out our website. We would love to help you find an amazing job where you can learn and grow!

Tips To Making a Confident Resume and Cover Letter

 

Whenever you have the chance write a cover letter or resume, make sure you follow these tips on how to make confident cover letter and resume!

When writing your resume you should always tailor it depending on what job you’re applying for. It wouldn’t be the best decision on your part to send the same resume to every job you’re interested in. Same goes for your cover letter. Before you start either, make you sure you take the time to research the company and position you will be applying to. That way, when you begin describing how you will be able to apply your skills to the position and overall company, you’ll actually know what company you’re talking to and what they’ll expect.

When it comes to stating your skills and how the company will benefit from them, be sure to be confident and direct. When employers look through your cover letter and resume, it’s not for very long. You want to let the employers know what you will bring to the table and your abilities that you will apply to your daily work. Also it’s important to show some enthusiasm, saying that you’re excited for this opportunity, how you would love to be apart of the work environment. This shows that you have a passion for this certain line of work and that you are ready whenever they are. Speaking of passion, it’s also good to let out some inner devotion towards this career of choice. This let’s the hiring managers know that you mean business and you’ll be a hardworking candidate and you are going to enjoy what you’re applying for.

Proofreading is the most annoying, but the most crucial step of any professional writing, including resumes and cover letters. Grammar and punctuation errors are obviously a no-no, because if they see those mistakes, they will think you didn’t put much effort into your work. Not a good first impression to make. It’s also good to use the correct phrases. My advice would be to avoid saying things like, “I think…”, “I guess…”, “I believe…” and other passive statements. You need to show that you’re strong within your wording. Say, “I will…”! Don’t lower yourself, be positive and courageous! But also keep in mind to not over do it. Don’t over-flatter yourself or the company. It will make the hiring manager wonder if these skills are even true and no one really likes a suck-up. Be short, and be sufficient with what you say in your resume and cover letter.

Take these key skills and apply them to your cover letter and resume and you’ll come out with a very confident and strong resume! If you need more help with resumes and would like to submit your resume in to The Wilson Group, visit our website.

A Guide For The Recent Grad

You’ve taken your last set of finals, received your diploma, and are excited about starting a new chapter in your life…now what? Finding your first job post-graduation might be the toughest and most frustrating time in your life thus far. Never fear, the Wilson Group is here! We have outlined three tips to help you through this stressful time.

Find a Mentor:
The best way to know where to start your career is to learn from the past life of someone you look up to. Find a mentor that is in the same field you are hoping to go into and talk to them about how they got started. Not only will they give you advice on how to kick off your career, but they also might be a useful contact for networking purposes. It is always easier to follow a recipe than make up your own, so follow their recipe for success and try to follow it. However, like any good recipe, you can always stray a bit from the path and make it your own. This person has been exactly where you stand today, so they know how to help you through the ups and downs of starting your professional life.

Don’t Be Too Picky:
After four years of countless all nighters and what seems like an eternity of research papers and complicated classes, it is hard not to feel as though you deserve more than an entry level position. However, your first few years in the workforce may not be, and will not be your end all be all. Your first job does not define you, so look it as more of a stepping stone to reaching your dream career. After all, we all have to start somewhere and gain experience. When applying for jobs you should apply for your dream positions, but you should also think about not being as picky and take an entry level position. You never know where that job can take you, for all you know, you could be running that company one day!

Don’t Lose Hope:
Your mailbox is full of rejection emails and you are on the breaking point of giving up, but don’t lose hope! There are thousands of other recent grads out there feeling exactly the way you are. It seems as though every day you see someone else posting on social media about getting their dream job at company X, or getting into a prestigious graduate school abroad, but stop comparing yourself to those people, and focus on your own life. Social comparison is the thief of joy, especially during this time in your life, and Facebook only heightens the feelings of inadequacy. Don’t let other’s success get in the way of your own. Instead look at them as a resource, talk to them about how they got their job, and who knows, they may even be able to help you get a job. Success is not a race, you have the rest of your life to be in the workforce, so don’t stress so much if something doesn’t fall into your lap immediately, you will come out more resilient in the long run.

For more tips on starting your career off on the right foot, visit our website.

On Company Culture

One of the most overlooked elements in regards to finding success and happiness within a workplace is understanding the company’s culture. The company’s culture can range anywhere from strictly formal and professional to creative and casual. A company’s culture is much more than the image reflected to the public. The culture is also about how the members of the company interact with one another, how they dress, how the office space is presented, and how the company relates with their customers and clients. Some companies may have a very strong culture with deeply ingrained roots and values, and others may not have such an obvious one. Understanding a company’s culture is key to knowing if you will fit in with the company and if the company is a good fit for you.

Do Your Homework:
Before applying for a job, make sure you understand a company’s culture. This is not only key to acing a job interview, but also ensuring this job will be a positive fit. A company’s website is a great way to start understanding their culture. Videos, blogs, and pictures give great insight into what a company believes in and how they interact with one another. Second, checking other online reviews is another way to capture what the company’s clients and employees think and feel about that company. However, one caveat to online reviews is they are often on either ends of the spectrum, being either extremely negative or extremely positive. Most people with average or normal feelings about a company will not take the time to write a review for the world to see. Finally, a great way to capture a company’s culture is to look into the company’s social media sites. These will give the most genuine representation of a company’s culture through posts, events, and photos.

Understand Their Mission Statement:
The mission statement is inherently their culture in a few sentences. Most companies have a mission statement that allows one to understand their core values as a company. Be critical with their mission statement to fully understand if it aligns with your own mission and values. If it does not, than the company may not be the best fit for you, and it much better knowing this from the get go.

Observe Their Environment:
The interview is not only the best way for the company to get to know you, but also the best way for you to get to know who they are and what they stand for. Don’t let nerves get the best of you, and solely focus on what you are going to say to the interviewer. Instead, look around, and take some time to observe their culture. What does their office look like? What do people wear when they come to work? Are co-workers mingling or getting along? One of the most important parts of an interview is that you ask questions yourself. Be sure to include at least one question geared toward the company culture to the interviewer, it not only helps you understand their culture, but also shows the interviewer that you care about their mission and values.

For more tips and tricks on your job search, visit our website.

How To Fall In Love With Your Job

With Valentine’s day just around the corner, love is in the air. However, this is not the typical romance advertised for February 14th. This Valentine’s day we are focusing on loving your job. Just because you may not have your ultimate dream job, does not mean you cannot love your job. Enjoying your job not only helps your mental health, but it also helps you succeed in life. Whether you are just embarking on your career path, or have matured through the workforce, these tips will help you learn to love your job.

Tips for Loving you Job:

Focus On the Positives
We all know the feeling when we wake up early and all we want to do is to hit the snooze button. Getting up early for a nine to five job, seven days a week can become a drag. However, instead of waking up and focusing on the lack of sleep you got, or facing a traffic filled commute, focus on something positive about your job. Once you have that one positive attribute about your job, amp it up! This can be anywhere from enjoying spending time with your coworkers, interesting assignments, to opportunities for learning. Changing how you perceive your job can make all the difference. Even if there is no tangible change, having a positive attitude will not only help you enjoy your day more, but it will also encourage a positive workplace for everyone else in the office.

2. Surround Yourself With Those You Love
Sometimes the key to happiness within a career is being surrounded by those you love. Having a strong relationship with your coworkers and your superiors can turn any job into one you feel passionate about. The key to enjoying your job is being surrounded by people
who you enjoy and you look forward to spending time with. The fact of life is that you will be spending a lot of time with people you work with, so creating and maintaining positive relationships will allow you to enjoy going to work each day.

3. Ask For More Responsibility
Having a routine is great, but sometimes routines at work become tedious, which only increases boredom. Feeling unimportant within a company can take a tole on how you perceive your job. If you feel as though you are completing the same tasks at work on a daily basis, ask for more responsibility! Having more responsibility will add a new element of interest into your daily responsibilities and it will look impressive in the eyes of your supervisor. Tackling a new challenge at work increases your skill set, allows for opportunities for learning and growth, and can open you up to new and interesting people at your company.

This Valentine’s day focus on what you love about your job, and what you can do to change what you don’t love. Remember The Wilson Group is here to help you find that job you love. For more information and tips on landing a job you love visit our website.

Did You Know?

Did you know that TWG not only helps with personnel solutions, but also offers a variety of services to help you land your dream job? That’s right, with our Resume Refreshers, One-on-One Interview Coaching, and Career Coaching, we can put you one step closer to achieving those career goals.

Resume Refresher

As the times are changing, it is important that your resume stays relevant when applying for jobs. The Wilson Group is here to help keep your resume up-to-date and ready for that next job opportunity. We will update and refresh your resume with words and phrases that will blow your employers away! Not only that, but we will also help you navigate applying online, making sure that your resume ends up in the hands of the hiring authority. Let TWG make your resume top of the line!

One -on -One Interview Coaching

Do you find yourself ready to prep for an interview but not knowing where to start? TWG offers one-on-one coaching that will take you through every step of the interview process. Within the 1 hour session, you will be prepped in both common interview questions and job winning answers. Not only this, but we will take you through the 10 most common mistakes in interviews and teach you how to avoid them.

Career Coaching

Before changing careers, TWG can help you create a plan of action through Career Coaching. We will help you develop a career path through strength identification, giving you the confidence to achieve what is on the road ahead!

For more information check out our website.

Follow-Up or Be Forgotten

Following up on an interview can be tricky business. You want to ensure you stand out among the other applicants, but not for the wrong reasons. Here are three ways to follow-up after an interview that won’t get you on the block list.

1. Send a thank-you note. – This should be done no matter what. Whether it is a handwritten note sent the next day or an email immediately following the interview, a thank-you note goes a long way. It shows you are interested and thankful for their time. Keep it brief and sincere.

2. Share a relevant industry article. – In order to keep up the engagement and help the recruiter remember you, try sending him or her a relevant article. Make sure the article is from a credible source, is current, and pertains to something discussed during the interview. This keeps the lines of communication open and shows you have industry knowledge.

3. Ask to connect on LinkedIn. – You’re looking to be part of this organization. Connecting on LinkedIn shows you are ready to take the next step. When you send the request, be sure to write a customized note so they know who you are and what your purpose is. If you can, provide an incentive for them as well by offering to connect them with a relevant industry contact of yours. It’s all about who you know.

While doing these follow-ups doesn’t guarantee a job, they can help set you apart from the rest. Showing you are eager to be part of their team as well as knowledgeable about their industry is imperative in the job-hunting process. If you need help with finding the right career match for you, visit our website and set up an appointment. We can help you every step of the way!

TIME TO STRIKE UP A CONVERSATION

We are eager to get you matched perfectly with the right talent or the right employer. Our years of experience translate to great starts.

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