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25 Tips for Job-Hunting 2014 Grads

25 Tips For Job-Hunting 2014 Grads
1. Create a LinkedIn profile. Start by opening a LinkedIn account at with your name, email address, a LinkedIn ‘headline’ under your name, and a headshot uploaded to your profile.
2. Go to and get job-search business cards printed. Include your full name, email address, LinkedIn profile url (see number three on our list, below) and phone number plus a line or two about your new degree and the kind of job you’re looking for.
3. Construct a personalized LI profile url and use it on your resume, your job-search business cards and your email signature.
4. Write to everyone you’ve ever met & tell them you’re graduating and job-hunting
5. Write your Human-Voiced Resume.
6. Get a great, professional-looking headshot for your LI profile.
7. Decide what kinds of jobs you’d like to go after and brand yourself for those jobs specifically.
8. Go see your campus Career Services folks
9. Research starting salaries for the jobs you’re focusing on. Use Payscale and Salary to get a bead on the salary range you’ll be shooting for.
10. Use the LinkedIn search called “Who’s Around?” to learn which employers in your target city or region employ people doing jobs like the ones you’re pursuing
11. Learn about Pain Letters and how to use them.
12. Start collecting your Dragon-Slaying Stories and creating a story file to remind yourself of them. Your Dragon-Slaying Stories could spring from situations at a paid job, in school or anywhere you saved the day!
13. Start lining up your professional references. Get each person’s full name, job title, email address and phone number and create a References document.
14. Start assembling your job interview outfits. If you can have three interview-ready ensembles set to go, you won’t worry about what to wear when interview time comes! (You can wear the same shoes to all three interviews. Guys can wear the same jacket to two of them at the same employer.)
15. Clean up your Facebook page! Take away anything you wouldn’t want your next boss to see (especially in the sex-and-drugs department. Rock n roll can stay).
16. Start thinking about the question “As an entry-level employee in (Marketing, Sales, PR, Engineering, HR, IT, Customer Service, Manufacturing, Inventory Control, Process Management, etc.) what problem will I solve for my manager?” The more clearly you can answer that question when your job interviews begin, the better!
17. Write a sample Pain Letter, even if you don’t send the first one out.
18. Make a list of target employers to begin your job search with. You can start sending out ‘real’ Pain Letters six weeks before graduation if you want to start working right after you graduate. Hurrah for you!
19. Get an interview kit assembled: a padfolio or portfolio with a full pad of paper in it, a nice pen that you like to write with, and a short stack of your job search business cards in a pocket in the portfolio or padfolio. You’re set to go!
20. Start connecting to your classmates, any ‘grownup’ businesspeople you’ve met, your professors and the folks in your Career Services center to grow your LinkedIn network. Connect to your friends’ parents and your parents’ friends. Join some LinkedIn groups, too!
21. Practice answering common job-interview questions like “Why are you interested in this job?” “What’s been your biggest learning experience so far?” “What’s your greatest weakness? (a sucktastic question but you will hear it sooner or later) and “Why should we hire you?”)
22. Figure out how you will meet your monthly expenses on the salary your expected job is likely to pay. Let’s say you’re shooting for $35,000-per-year jobs. A job like that will give you about $2900 each month before taxes, or perhaps about $2320 per month after taxes. Now you can see why your parents and most adults complain about taxes! From that $2320 each month you’ve got to pay for rent, utilities, groceries, TV, internet and phone, transportation, clothes and entertainment. If you pay for your own insurance, add that into the mix. How will you afford all those things every month? You might think about getting a roommate. If your parents are okay with you living with them while you get launched in your career, consider that option too. It is hard enough starting a career fresh out of school without stressing about money every minute.
23. Go to a job fair to check out the experience.
24. Go to an off-campus, local networking event for the experience. Meet an old person (that means 40 years old or more). Get his or her business card and suggest a coffee date. Go have coffee with the old person! Write and tell us how it was.
25. Reward yourself for completing the first 24 items on this list. You are a superstar!

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