Portraying yourself as a consummate professional begins at your first point of contact with a prospective employer. It’s so much more than a cliché: first impressions really do count. So be sure you start off on the right foot with the people and organization that may eventually become the source of your livelihood.
Calling potential employers can be intimidating. But when done well, it demonstrates your self-confidence, persistence and genuine interest in a company.
- To request an interview: Call the company’s main line and get the name, title, address and phone number of the person who heads the department where you’d like to work. Write a compelling cover letter expressing your interest, attach your resume and send it to that person. After a reasonable time period, call your contact and inquire about job openings. If there are none, request a brief informational interview. This may be a bit difficult, but often, persistence pays off.
- After an interview: In your thank-you note, mention that you will call to follow up on a specific date – and do so. Ask if any more information is required before an employer makes their decision and tell them you look forward to hearing from them.
Following Up after an Interview
By sending a prompt thank-you note and taking other steps to follow up after an interview, you reinforce that you’re qualified and should be given serious consideration as a candidate.
- Before you leave, ask about the next step. Then you’ll know when it’s acceptable to follow up.
- Send your thank-you note within 24 hours. Use it to reiterate your interest in the company and the position. Highlight whichever of your skills are most relevant to the job. If there’s anything you wish you’d said in your interview, include this information as well.
- If things drag out, check in periodically. When you do, offer something of value. For instance, forward a relevant article or thank the employer for a bit of advice they gave you. Keep it simple and brief and don’t ask for anything back.
Finessing Your Social Media Presence
The Internet has the potential to connect you to more people than any other medium. It’s critical to have a positive, professional online reputation. You can be sure that hiring managers will conduct a search on you.
- Maintain a spotless LinkedIn page. This is the primary site for business persons and organizational decision makers, so your presence on LinkedIn must be nothing less than 100 percent professional. This includes your photo, which should be a businesslike head shot.
- Facebook is not off limits. Only post information that portrays you in a positive light. You can’t control what your friends post, but ask them to remove any potentially damaging information photos or posts.
- Revisit your privacy settings. You may want to reset them to hide your friends. This protects them and also keeps others from searching them to find even more personal information on you.
- Google yourself. See if you are digitally distinctive in any way. Do you like what you see? If not, it’s time to reinvent your online image.
The career experts at PrideStaff Fresno can provide additional tips and resources for your successful image-building and overall job search strategy. Read our related career center posts or contact our expert Fresno recruiters today.