How To Land A Great Job As A Graduate (After NYSC)
Immediately they are done with NYSC, most graduates just want a job. #dazall. No goals, no particualr industry or company in mind, they just want to start collecting salary. But then, grabbing the first job offer that appears just to start collecting a paycheck can lead to delayed success or a temporary career derailment.
Put some extra effort in planning your job search, researching where you want to work, and starting the professional network that will support your career for many, many years. So, be different. Take the time to do it right. Start now, and follow these steps.
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1. Have 1 or 2 target jobs.
This is the biggest mistake people make. No idea what they really want to do – they just want a job, any job! Lack of focus makes a job search so much more difficult, exponentially more difficult!
People who don’t know what job they want end up wasting time and energy applying for everything and anything. Worse, their network will be useless to them. And, sadly, they usually end up accepting the first job offered just to get it over with – whether or not that job is a good fit.
Avoid that mistake by taking the time to examine what you enjoy doing – and what you hate doing – and figuring out what jobs are the best fit for you, with your interests, skills, experience, and education.
2. Put together a list of potential employers and Identify contacts at those potential employers
Check the internet or your daddy’s contact list for contacts of those who are currently working at your target organisation. Hopefully, someone you know will be a staff of those organizations (or have worked there recently).
Also check with your Facebook friends, Twitter or even Instagram followers and your LinkedIn contacts to see how you are connected to people currently working at one of your target company. Chances are pretty good that you will have some connections. Use the appropriate method to establish contact with those people.
3. Once you’ve identified contacts, research them to find a connection or three.
Find out what you can about them to see what you have in common, how you can “connect” person-to-person. Were you born in the same state, lived in the same cities, attended the same schools? Did a parent or other family member work at the same company where this person worked? Or for a competitor?
You will definitely be Googled by potential employers, so do the same. Take everything with a bit of a grain of salt, depending on the source. And don’t scare the person with an esoteric detail about their far distant past. You are NOT trying to become a stalker; you ARE trying to find common ground for connecting.
4. Then, get in touch with those contacts to find out
What it is like to work for each of those employers. What is the “culture” for each like? How competitive? How friendly?
Determine, if you can, the ethical environment. What’s the “philosophy” of the organization? Google is famous for its, “Don’t be evil” philosophy. How would your contact describe the potential employer’s philosophy? Sometimes there are 2 philosophies – an official philosophy and an unofficial one. Often, when there are 2 philosophies, they may be in conflict and the environment can be very stressful.
Try to understand what the typical career paths are. How are people promoted? Is it a “promote from within” culture or one which brings “outsiders” into senior job slots. What is the criteria for promotion? If you are a woman (just because feminism doesn’t have its due effect yet), ask how many people in middle and senior management are women
Where do people work after they leave? How long do people normally stay there? Is it an “up or out” culture or do people stay for long periods?
How did your contact get hired? What was the process? Plus the process they would recommend as best/most effective, now, if they were in your shoes?
What do people do in the typical “first job” in that organization? How long do people stay in that first job? What are the criteria for being promoted? What options are open to them for the “next” step in their careers within the organization?
5. Take time to manage your online reputation
Since most recruiters and employers (80% according to a well-respected study by Microsoft) will do an Internet search on your name before inviting you in for an interview, you need to be managing your online reputation.
Clean up your Facebooks posts as much as possible, and then be sure to have complete and public LinkedIn Profile. Both sites rank very well in Google search results, and can enable you to show employers your best side (in your own words).
Don’t forget to do some Defensive Googling to see what those employers will find about you, too. Then, delete, fix, replace, or manage as necessary.
If you have any other questions with regards to your job search, feel free to leave a comment about it and we’ll get to you as soon as possible.