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Career Guidelines...

Career Choices

Choosing a career path is never an easy task. Most people change careers approximately seven times in their lifetime, so there is a lot of evaluation and re-evaluation that needs to be done periodically. You will need to decide on your priorities and the lifestyle you want to choose the work that fits your personal needs as well as your skills and interests.


The first step is to know yourself. Answer these two questions: What do you do well? What do you enjoy doing? This will help you identify your strengths and interests.

  • Aptitude: What do you find easy to do? What are your talents? Think about these things and discuss them with another person to see what talents you have that can be used in different occupations .
  • Skills: Make a list of skills you have (operate machinery, language, computer skills, certificates, diplomas, etc)
  • Personality: Be honest with yourself and list your qualities. You can also ask others to help you with this list.
  • Responsibility: How much responsibility do you want within a job? Do you work better within a team or part of a group or do you like to work independently and make your own decisions? Consider the pros and cons of both.
  • Interests: Make a list of your work interests and your hobbies. These may help in the type of job you would like. Also keep in mind that some hobbies should stay hobbies.
  • Needs: What do you want your job to offer you? List them by importance. Understand that in order to have one thing, you may need to sacrifice another. To work through something like this, write out each of the values that are important to you.

HOW TO WRITE PROSPECTING CAREER LETTERS

You don’t have to wait for a company to advertise openings before applying to them. In fact, simply identifying a target company puts you ahead of most job seekers, who only know that they want a job… and not much else.

Start by defining what you want to do for your desired company. Next, find the name of the person you’d be working for. You can look at the company’s web site for organizational charts, often found under “About Us “or a similar link, or just pick up the phone and call to get the manger’s name.

Once you have the name of the potential boss, it is time to write your cover letter. The more customized and specific your letter is, the better. Be sure to research the firm and learn as much as possible about THEIR problems, which are YOUR opportunities. This will help you propose solutions that make employers sit up and notice.

SAMPLE COVER LETTER

West Prospect District
St. Catherine P.O.

August 8, 2008

Norman Spence
Canaan Dream Homes
7 Villa Road
Shop 8, Q Plaza
Mandeville

Dear Sir:

I am submitting my application for consideration to fill the position of Manager in your expanding organization.

I have recently completed my Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) degree in Management Studies with an emphasis in Human Resource Management at the Northern Caribbean University.

Through leadership in my University’s Business Club, I have begun to refine my leadership, management and planning skills which I believe will make a positive impact in your organization. My exposure gained in core courses such as Strategic Management, Real Estate Practices, and Operations Management as well as numerous lecture series and seminars has prepared me sufficiently for a career in the world of Business.

I am confident that I will be able to contribute my time and service effectively in aiding the development and continued growth of Canaan Dream Homes.

I have attached my résumé for your perusal. I am available for an interview at a time most convenient to you.

Sincerely,

Simone Smith

Professional Dress

Here is a list of things to do to look your best when dressing for that interview. Remember, everything in moderation.

Women's Interview Attire

  • Solid color, conservative suit
  • Coordinated blouse
  • Moderate shoes
  • Limited jewelry
  • Neat, professional hairstyle
  • Tan or light hosiery
  • Sparse make-up & perfume
  • Manicured nails
  • Portfolio or briefcase

Men's Interview Attire

  • Solid color, conservative suit
  • White long sleeve shirt
  • Conservative tie
  • Dark socks, professional shoes
  • Very limited jewelry
  • Neat, professional hairstyle
  • Go easy on the aftershave
  • Neatly trimmed nails
  • Portfolio or briefcase

Interview Techniques

Important interview tips

  • Let the interviewer lead the interview.
  • Be yourself and be truthful
  • Make good eye contact
  • Never talk negatively about your previous employers and coworker.
  • Do not exaggerate your abilities or compare yourself with others.
  • Do not speak too loudly or softly. Use the interviewer as your model.
  • Do not ask about the salary or fringe benefits. (Let the interviewer bring it up.

Internships: benefits and opportunities

Internships: A competitive advantage

An internship offers you a chance to learn and discover different elements that may interest you in any area. It can also be the deciding factor that best predicts if this field is something you would really be interested in pursuing as a future career choice.

With today’s job market being highly competitive, you will need to make yourself stand out amongst the rest. Students who have completed internships obtain employment more quickly following graduation. It also looks great on your resume! Although you may occasionally have to make coffee or file papers, an internship is a great opportunity to gain real world experience and to get your foot in the door.

 
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