Obvious Facts When Becoming Job-Ready
1. Have a well developed resume ready to roll.
2. Prepared your family for your new job.
3. Purchase a nice binder that carries your writing pad, professional writing pen, business card, and 5 copies of your resume. Always carry a contact information business card – always – carry nothing else in the interview. Too many items carried in an interview distract the recruiter.
4. Ensure you do not carry childlike items into the interview – such as a neon pink pen with a weeble people figure on the end of it.
5. Prep yourself for the phone interview with a role play situation.
6. Ensure your finances are in order to ensure you pass the background check.
7. Research your face book page and all social media outlets to ensure “party pictures” are removed.
8. Research your credit scores – rectify bad credit results.
9. Have three reference letters ready to roll.
10. Prepare your professional references for a potential phone call from your prospective employer.
11. Prepare thank-you notes to your new prospective employer ahead of interview.
12. Ensure you have an interview suit picked out and pressed also that interview shoes are shined and broken in two days prior to your interview.
13. Ensure you prepare three interview questions for the recruiter.
14. Gas up your clean car and take a practice drive to your interview location one day ahead of the interview.
A job-ready military applicant who qualifies for the job and interviews perfectly – gets the job. If you haven’t prepared a “knock-out” resume, researched the corporate culture of the company you’re interviewing with, and familiarized yourself with the corporate lingo, you’re setting yourself up for failure.
Preparing yourself and your family for your new job entry is also very important. Corporate recruiters are trained to weed out applicants who aren’t job-ready.
We surveyed our top corporate recruiters for their top-notch guidance on the “perfect Interview” from the “perfect candidate”. Here’s what they had to say:
Do NOT be late. This may seem obvious, but three out of every ten applicants run one to five minutes late for corporate interviews. Corporate recruiters always remember the late applicant, but they never get the job. You can never provide a good enough excuse for being late. Consider if three out of every ten applicants are historically late for interviews, showing up 12 minutes early for an interview will put you ahead of at least three applicants!
Do NOT ramble. Keep your answers to “just the facts.” Please, do not share intimate personal information with corporate recruiters. Bottom line, ramblers don’t get hired. If you consume a corporate recruiter’s time on extraneous information, you’ll appear selfish and self-centered, even if you are not. Recruiters envision ramblers taking time away from co-workers in an office setting. Time is money to a corporate recruiter. Remember this when you have the urge to tell them your life’s story. They don’t care whether you get along with your mother-in-law or commander’s wife. They only care if you can do the job while working as a team member inside their corporate work groups.
Do NOT hurry when completing your job application. Arrive early and give the application the proper attention it requires. This is the No. 3 killer of job chances. The military’s Transition Assistance Program (TAP) manual contains a master application that is a comprehensive reference to complete prior to filling out applications. Sloppy and rushed applications substantiate your lack of attention to detail. A quality writing pen is one of the primary tools of the trade for a job seeker. Ensure you have a good one and bring a back up. Bring a business card with your name, address, e-mail address and cell phone number on it. Don’t give them your home phone number.
Are you going to move soon? Never dodge this question. Here’s our recommended answer. “As a military spouse, we move on average 4 times during our military service to our country. My goal for my potential employment within this organization is to work with great focus, and with accurate attention to every detail, in order to maintain my peak performance standards. I assure you that if chosen for this position, I will work smarter, faster, and better than anyone on the Team I am assigned to. Should we move within my employment in your organization, perhaps we can discuss a work-from-home opportunity as either an employee or Independent Contractor, so that my move does not burden your organization. I know how to make this transition seamless for this organization.
Recruiters do NOT like screaming kids or barking dogs in the background when they call your home for a follow up phone interview, or to let you know you landed the job. Give them a phone number free of distractions. The fewer distractions you have during conversation the better off you’ll be. Also, make the recruiter aware of any speech impediments you have. If you stutter, tell the corporate recruiter upfront that you stutter. Tell them not to be embarrassed for you and ask them politely to allow you to finish your sentences. Nothing upsets someone who stutters more than someone finishing their sentences for them. Plow through the sentence you’re having problems with and you will earn the respect of the recruiter.
Do NOT have your cell phone on during an interview. A ringing cell phone during an interview proves you don’t think ahead. Military spouses are natural organizers and “think-ahead” people. These two factors will place you way ahead of the competition.
Do NOT request altering the work schedule to accommodate your schedule as an applicant or as a new hire. You can negotiate the altered work schedule when you’re established as a detailed worker. Asking for time off during your interview process or while on corporate probation is a risky move.
Do NOT tell the corporate recruiter you have other offers pending when you come in for the first interview. An employer wants to think they are important to you. There will be plenty of time to discuss other offers you have pending, if in fact one is made to you.
Do NOT speak negatively against your former employer, even if they deserve it. Corporate recruiters look for happy, enthusiastic, positive people. Gossip is gossip. Corporate recruiters are trained to detect a disloyal or disgruntled applicant.
Do NOT wiggle in your chair when asked a question you are not prepared to answer. Simply look the recruiter in the eyes, smile, nod your head, and say, “May I take a moment to think about that question?”
Do NOT answer a question you don’t understand. Recruiters are trained to detect misleading or on-the-spot answers. Look the recruiter in the eyes, smile, nod your head, and say, “I want to be certain that I heard the question properly. Could you repeat the question?” Recruiters value a detailed applicant.
Check out the company’s web site. Company web sites offer valuable information about the values, culture and philosophy of an organization. Arm yourself with as much “intelligence” as possible about the company before your interview.
Know the name and title of the person who is interviewing you. If you are unsure about who will conduct your interview, call ahead and ask politely to get the information!
When signing-in at the human resource desk, ALWAYS shake the hand of the receptionist when you introduce yourself. HR receptionists always let corporate recruiters know if you came in smiling, angry, rushed, frazzled, rude, or polite. Don’t underestimate the “power” of the receptionist who announces your arrival to the corporate recruiter.
Are you willing to work required overtime? Your answer to this question is always a resounding “yes”.
Never tell a corporate recruiter what you can’t or won’t do. Restrict your answer to what you will do.
When asked to provide one of your faults, do NOT say you work too hard. Recruiters hate this answer. A good answer is, “My kids would have a ball with that question.” Recruiters love an applicant with a sense of humor. Then be honest. “I miss my support system back home. As a military spouse I have trained myself to be much too independent.” That’s the perfect answer! Recruiters also love independent thinkers!
Interviews are NOT therapy sessions – In no other circumstance are you alone in a room with a stranger, talking about yourself for an hour, if not with a therapist or doctor. Remember, job interviews are technical and focus-driven. Answer briefly and concisely every question posed to you. Do not offer additional information. Remember, recruiters are trained to WEED out the weakest candidate from their potential candidate pool when more than 3 candidates are competing for the same job.
Never under estimate the POWER of Think-Ahead Organization! Peak performers know how to stay ahead of the curve during job searches, job interviews and times of promotions and pay raises.