Two Ways to Know You Got the Job

When interviewing for a company, you might be running up against some stiff competition. Other than making sure you follow the tips posted earlier, there is a fairly reliable way to deduct whether or not the employer would like to see you again.

1. Did you Stack up to the Competition?

If you are applying to a corporate job through Monster or Indeed, the website will usually give you a basic statistic of who else applied for the job, average level of education, years of experience, etc. If you found out about the job through a connection, the task gets easier. If you got the interview with the help of a staffing company, ask your recruiter what he knows about others applying and how many other recruiters were put to the task to his knowledge. If your interview was set up by a friend, make sure you ask them who else is coming in and how they received their opportunity. Moreover, it’s always easy to spot someone who came to interview before you. He will be dressed to the 9s (such as you should be) and look just as nervous. Don’t be afraid to size them up to yourself.

2. Did you Do Your Research?

Have you figured out that the other guy looks the part more than you do? Trouble doesn’t end there. If you find yourself stumbling over the question: “why do you think you would make a great addition to XYZ?” –you didn’t do your research and it’s about to become obvious. You can be positive someone is going to come in right after you and know the exact answer to that question. Another thing: no matter how terrible your name memory is, and most of us admit having a pretty bad one, one thing should be engraved into your memory. If the receptionist asks you and you don’t know the name of the person you are interviewing with, stumbling or saying the wrong name is going to make you seem careless. If you know names are not your specialty, write this one on your hand and prepare jokes in case you forget somehow anyway. Finally, do not forget the simple task of Googling. I cannot begin to describe how many people have came back from an interview with positive feedback just because they knew about a merger the company had five years ago. Google will also answer the question: “do you know what XYZ company does?”

Knowing that you can answer both of those criteria successfully will be the difference between success and continuing to search for work. It will boost your confidence enough to a) believe in yourself enough to avoid jitters and b)actually get the job because you’ve done your best to deserve it.

Who Cares About Your Life Experience?

Well you should, because who knows who else will. Truth is, the world, specifically, the corporate world, is a cold, lonely place. When I decided to take on the debt of college I thought it would certainly be worth it, considering the payoff is a BA degree. While that can now be easily debated because of the economy, I am still pretty sure that I was right. That being said, I did get a job. But it certainly didn’t land in my lap like I felt my new BA would guarantee.

I started my search in December, around the time that I finished my senior thesis. Along with the BA degree entitlement, I expected that my two internships, student-faculty research, etc. etc. would speak for me and that any company I applied to would want  someone with such an extensive background. Based on the 100 emails I sent each week–wrong. I used every resource I could: LinkedIn, Monster, Indeed, my college counselors, Simplyhired, Mediabistro you name the site, I was on it. Not to mention that I was still in school and all of those profiles needed to be kept updated to avoid disappearing from feeds into the resume oblivion the internet powers. Between the obsessive compulsive habits that soon accompanied every evening I had just a bit less homework to do, I soon turned my entitlement into anger/anxiety, which was just up the road from fear and more anger. Finally, my emotions settled down into exhaustion and exasperation. Why not me? I will go for any job you have, I have experience in a corporate and small business environment, I am peppy and I paid 60K for my college degree?

The truth was the following, there are bazillions more like me, who would also take any job they possibly could and who might have had a pretty great background. The deeper truth was no matter how great I thought I was, I still made mistakes. From the moment I applied for my first retail job at 16 to the last resume I sent. I write here to explain these mistakes and just spread knowledge. Knowing where the nail is sticking out in the floor might help you not stub your toe on it. Are there still going to be times, when you know that the nail is there, but for the split second you are distracted and stub your toe anyway? Absolutely. I am going to start from the beginning of my working career and move up. Feel free to distract me and ask about something else, because I don’t mind stubbing my toe. I would appreciate feedback, condolences, questions for advice and comments for that reason.