A Slightly Alternative Top Ten of things I’ve Found Useful when Job Hunting (Part One)

A quick search of the net will throw up numerous ‘job hunting top tens’. I thought I might as well join in, but I wanted to give it a bit of a spin. So welcome to my top ten of the slightly alternative things I’ve found useful when job hunting.

This is part one, part two will follow. In reverse order 

10 – A professional-looking Email Address

I’ve discussed this before, but having a dedicated, easy to read email address does make you stand out. It also helps to funnel all of the inevitable spam into one inbox. It’s good to keep some separation between the day to day emails about cats in hats, and the emails about your job hunting. Separate email addresses let you do just that.

9 – A Good Email Client

Once you get emails flooding into your ‘job hunting’ account, you’ll need to make sure they are organised. The chances are that you’re going to apply for lots of very similar roles, so keep application receipts organised and easily accessible so that you can quickly find them when you answer the phone to ‘Hi, it’s Jayne from Best Company Ever and I’m calling about your recent application’. Find an email client that works for you. There’s a lot about, just search the app stores and don’t just default to using Outlook (although it is pretty good), or the client that comes with your phone. Play around and try different ones, and find one that works best for you. They all have different functionality so experiment and find one that fits in perfectly with how you manage your emails.

8 – Get a Routine

Treat your job hunt as ‘work’, and get a daily routine. I tend to check the job listings first thing in the morning and last thing at night. In between, I’ll work on applications and answering any follow-ups. I also tend to take breaks and lunch at the same time each day. The routine helps me stay focused.

7 – Get a Big pile of books

At some point, you will need to talk to people, and in these weird Covid times the chances are it will be online using something like Zoom. So like it or not, you’re going to be on camera, and you’ll need to pay some attention to how you’re going to look from the end. The quality of forward-facing cameras built into phones, tablets and laptops are fine, but their positioning during interviews can cause some weird effects. If you leave the device on your desk then once the webcam is active, you’ll fall foul of the ‘up the nose’ camera shot complete with a small chin and colossal forehead. The trick to looking better is to raise your laptop to head height, and the most convenient way of doing this is to use a pile of books. Or even a chair on a table.

6 – Post-it notes

The other benefit of online interviews is that the interviewer can only see what your camera can, so you have all of the space to the rear of the camera for notes, crib sheets and photos of cats (to make sure you smile). In my interviews, I write notes on large post-it notes and plaster them around my monitor and camera so that I have the relevant information at hand when I get that tricky question. I can also throw up some reminders to my strong points, notes about the company I’m trying to join and any ‘key messages’ I want to make sure I bring up.

Thats part one, the top five will follow


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