7 Steps to Applying for Jobs in Beast Mode

Job Application Apply Hiring Human Resources Concept

How to increase your job prospects when applying for jobs online

Submitting your CV online only is as effective in helping you land the job as dropping a bottle into the ocean and having it picked up by your soulmate. You lose track of what you applied to, who you contacted, what jobs you prioritize over others, and end up giving up.

I get it, applying for jobs sucks. I hate doing it. You hate doing. Meryl Streep hates doing it. Oh wait, she doesn’t need to apply for jobs. I got news for you, you’re not Meryl. BUT with this guide you’ll be turning down multiple offers with elegance and grace and look agelessly beautiful doing it (your actual appearance may vary).

 

Step 1: Create a job application tracking tool

This baby will help you keep track of what you applied to, the date, the URL of the position, the contact person, and other info you may wish to add. Keeping track will help you not get lost in the process, highlight positions you’re extra excited about, and keep track of your follow ups.

In fact, we created one just for you! Click here to download my patented (not really), ultra effective (it’s fairly simple), super organized excel sheet.

Here’s what it looks like

Job Application Tracking Tool - Screenshot

Step 2:  Don’t boil the ocean

Prioritize the jobs you want to apply for. Seems obvious? Yes because it is.  A common mistake that job seekers make is applying to every job they see without undertaking proper due diligence. More important than the quantity of applications you do, is the quality of applications you submit. Each job application requires a custom cover letter and potentially a custom CV. Recruiters can quickly spot candidates applying for the sake of applying, versus those who are serious about their pursuit of the position.

Find a way to spin your experience in a way that matches the position’s requirements. Make sure your cover letter isn’t longer than a page or about 600 words. Remember what you write in your cover letter because you’ll need it in step 4.

Find job postings on the company website or places like Indeed, Workopolis, Jobboom, Stepstone or one you may know about (leave it in the comments!). They are all effective at what they do: Showing job postings. Don’t forget to note how long ago the position has been listed. Jobs that have been posted for more than three months might signal that recruiters and positions supervisors are having a hard time filling the position. That is important as it means they may be more open to direct calling (good for you), or that this is a future opportunity.

Step 3: Start populating that list

The bigger your list is the better. The more positions you have in there, the more hope you have about the future. If one application doesn’t work out, just take a look at your nice long list and you will have something else to look forward to. Keeping your attitude positive is essential and this list does exactly that.

Step 4: Find the supervisor of the position you applied to

Skip HR. You might as well talk to Siri about your hopes and dreams because HR have ZERO bearing on whether or not you get hired. Your future manager does. Find their profile on LinkedIn. This will give you greater insight into who they are and allow you to gain a better understanding of the role’s requirements. In many cases your future manager was once playing the role you are applying for.

Arabian businessman having a phone conversation in his office

Step 5: The Call: “Hi is Mr. Gates there?”

The purpose of this call is to develop a relationship with your potential supervisor. By talking to you on the phone, they can gauge how excited you are about the position; better evaluate your qualifications and communication skills; and hopefully even glance over your CV and give you feedback. This will also get them invested in your candidacy and potentially push to get you an interview.

The way the call proceeds is also important. Call the front desk and ask to speak to the person you need. You MUST mention them by name. If asked for the purpose of your call, just say you’re following up on an email you sent them. Do NOT say your applying for jobs.

I cannot stress this enough. REHEARSE YOUR CALL. Write down the flow of the conversation on a sheet of paper and have it in front of you when you call. Think of it as a conversation flow chart. This will help eliminate filler words (Ums and Uhs) on the phone and take the conversation to where you want it to go. Things you want to Research before the call:

  • The project you anticipate you will be working on from day one
  • The role of your future supervisor and make sure you use key words
  • The timeline of project/product

After presenting yourself and your title on the phone, explain that you applied to a specific role, how you’re compatible with the role, how you plan to add value. Be sure to ask them questions too. Things like:

  • What they do on the project or in the company
  • What the duties of the candidate are specifically in the context of the project
  • The profile and number of the people you would be working with
  • Company culture questions like social events and lifestyle associated with the job

The end goal of the conversation is to convince the supervisor that you are worth looking into individually and for them to request to see your CV personally. Don’t be too shy to ask that. For example:

“If you don’t mind, I could email you my CV. I can briefly summarize our conversation and you have a better look at my qualifications. Would that be ok with you?”

If they say yes, you’re set. They might forward it to HR and put in a good word. They might request you be interviewed sooner than others. People appreciate a go getter who takes initiative, proves themselves as an effective communicator, and speaks clearly and eloquently on the phone. If they don’t say yes, don’t sweat it. People are busy, they would help if they could. Don’t insist and be sure to thank them for their time and for answering your questions.

Step 6: Summarize your interaction and send a thank you email

Send a “thank you” email to the person you spoke to. Include the documents and information you agreed to send and mention you will follow up with them in a week or so.

In your list, note down who you spoke to and the outcome of the conversation. This will help you keep track and not repeat conversations or questions. It will also keep your follow up call or email concise and to the point.

Step 7: Repeat until employed.

Or until you do it so much you write a blog post about it!

5 easy steps to help you nail your job interview!

You just received the email you have been waiting for. You have been invited to interview for a highly coveted role at your dream company. You feel ecstatic and begin to jump up and down…and then it hits you — there is only one vacancy and you start to feel the stress build up in your muscles. Fear not! We are here to help.

How exactly can you stand out from the crowd and make a memorable impression in the interview?

To make the best impression try out these 5 easy steps..

 

1) Give thanks

Pressing on thank you button

To leave a lasting impression and illustrate your amazing business repertoire, your first step in getting ahead of the curve is to draft a response to your interview invitation to show them your enthusiasm. Show enthusiasm for the role by explaining how excited you are and thank the organization for considering your candidacy. You may also want to add a sentence highlighting why you are attracted to the role. This will help HR ‘mark’ you and associate you with that quality, allowing them to remember you.

2) Do your research

Arab doing research

It is important that you begin to have a well formed understanding of the company you are applying to and the job you are applying for. You do this by 1) understanding how the company perceives themselves, but also by 2) understanding how the company is perceived by others, namely the industry it operates in, the wider business community and most importantly the company’s customers. It is important to do this as it is a part of what makes (and keeps) a company successful is its reputation.

Moreover, this is a critical step as it will lend you the opportunity to evaluate whether the company is a good fit for you. In other words, do the company’s values, culture and reputation align with your business objectives and brand? Chances are that if you join the company, you will be associated with the qualities that the company is known for.

To help answer these questions, first carefully re-read the job description in full, and get acquainted with what the organization you are looking to join is looking for in a candidate.  Next, visit the company’s website to learn more about their mission, business activities and culture. You may even want to have a quick glance at the company’s annual report to gauge their financial performance and brush up on their CSR activities.

Moreover, don’t shy away from exploring the company on social media, such as Facebook and Linkedin, for additional data points. The latter will also provide you with information on who in your wider network works at the company. Individuals in your network not only have the potential to provide additional information on the company and role you are applying for, but can also support you with building your question bank and offer to provide you with a mock interview session (as we will discuss in points 3 and 4).

Following that, you may want to read up about company reviews from current and former employees and business partners. Popular websites such as Glassdoor and Bayt provide a wealth of resources and commentary for you to form an impression of the company’s outside image.

 

3) Prepare your question bank

Closeup portrait young pretty woman in blue shirt resting hands on keyboard browsing digital computer laptop isolated background of sunny outdoor green trees office background

An often underestimated and underutilized tool when preparing for a job interview is your question bank. Have you taken the time to consider and think about what questions your interviewer will ask you? Close your eyes and try to visualize the day of your interview. Do you know what the first question you will asked to answer is?

In over 80% of cases, the first question asked in an interview is “tell me about yourself”. But what about the others?

Fear not! There is a relatively simple tool that you can use that will help you reduce the uncertainty — we like to call it the question bank. A question bank is a simple collection of frequently asked questions and your personalized answers to these questions.  

Personally, I have built my interview question bank over excel, creating different tabs for each company I am applying for.

As it turns out, there are easy to access resources that will allow you to build your question bank. Glassdoor has become an extremely popular tool for finding these questions. The website features the questions of other candidates who have interviewed with the company. In some cases you will be able to filter questions down by job title. Copy these questions into your question bank excel tool and start to think about the kinds of answers you would have. Record these answers into your tool. Often times, you can have more than one answer for each question. We recommend you prepare for at least 10 questions.

Click here to learn more about creating a question bank and to download a free sample prepared by Wadhefty that you can use. While using our platform is a good start, we highly recommend that you personalize it for the company and role you are applying for.

The question bank is an extremely powerful tool for a number of reasons. First, it will give you the opportunity to think ahead of the interview and prepare for questions in a risk free environment, allowing you to reduce the incidence of filler words, such as your typical “hmm” and “you know”, and uncomfortable silences in your actual interview. Second, having this tool in hand will facilitate your preparation of other interviews coming your way as many of the questions are often repeated by other companies.

4) Practice with a friend …or more

Closeup portrait two surprised girls looking at cell phone discussing latest gossip news sharing intimate moments shopping laughing at what they see isolated outdoors background

Once you feel you have made enough progress on your question bank and have come up with strong answers that reinforce the company’s and the role’s requirements, take your preparation to the next level by getting the assistance of family or friends to perform a live mock interview.

Depending on the interview, we recommend anywhere from 1 to 2 simulations to help you get comfortable in a live setting. Your first mock will allow you to identify weaknesses in your interview skills and the second will give you another chance at practicing those areas where you need additional development.

One rule stands true — the more you practice, the more prepared and at ease you feel during interview day.

5) Smile

Closeup portrait appointment with office manager job interview hiring isolated indoors office background. Getting that first job or excellent customer service with a smile

You have heard plenty about the importance of first impressions and of dressing for success. Equally as important however is your body language. Did you know that smiling for example, can have quite a big impact on yourself and others? Not only has smiling been shown to reduce stress levels, but it can also have a profound impact on how others view you. In fact, you are more likely to be perceived as confident and competent. It can also be contagious and it certainly won’t hurt if your interviewer catches on to your smile!

Congratulations, you have taken the first step at nailing your job interview. Now get ready to knock your interview out of the park!

One of the smartest tools you will use to help you succeed in your job interview

Successful professional casual man gesturing and checking cellphone messages towards city skyline. Entrepreneur enjoys success in job.

You recently used our expert services at Wadhefty and have a top-notch CV that reflects your individuality and offers employers the best representation of your experience and qualifications.

But in addition to using your CV, did you know that there are other tools at your disposal that can help get you closer to the role you are yearning for?

Enter the question bank. The question bank is a powerful tool that will help you prepare for your upcoming interview in a systematic and methodological way. It allows you to focus your attention on the important messages you want to relay so that employers see you as the best candidate for the job you are applying for. Additionally, it is comprehensive, providing you with a database of all interview related information.

HOW IT WORKS

The question bank is a live tool that features frequently asked questions that come up in a job interview. It is split up into 2 sections: general questions and company specific questions to ensure you are able to cover the full-spectrum. The goal is for you to sit and reflect on your past experiences and to generate answers for these questions. Questions can range from open-ended ones such as “Why do you want to join our company” to behavioral questions that draw on your past experience such as “tell us about a time you had an unproductive team member”.

We advise that you create the tool over excel, as it offers the most flexibility with making additions and iterations, and offers the best functionality.

Sure the tool seems simple enough (and it is), but the impact it can have can go a long way to help you stand out from other candidates and allow you to tweak your background so that it is a strong fit for the role.

As we are committed to your success, we have created the Wadhefty question bank, a free excel resource that you can use to help you prepare for job interviews.

Click here to download your free Wadhefty question bank.

While the Wadhefty question bank is a strong tool that will allow you to differentiate yourself from other candidates, we highly advise you to build on the questions in the tool to suit your personal needs. We recommend that you create a different tab for each company and/or role you are interviewing for.

 

STAR APPROACH TO ANSWERS

Catch the star. A person is standing next to the Milky Way galaxy pointing on a bright star.

Equally as important as building the question bank are the answers you will have to those questions.

Have a scroll through the file. You will find that the file already boasts over 10 questions. So what is the best approach to employ in answering these questions?

We recommend that you use the STAR approach. While the first thing that comes to your mind might be the solar system, STAR actually stands for Situation, Task, Action and Result.

Let’s quickly break it down. First it is important to describe the situation and provide context. Were you working with a team on a school project? Or was it during your summer leadership expedition? Once the scene has been set, it is important to describe what task you have at hand and what the expectation of your role was. This allows you to smoothly transition into the next step: what actions did you take to achieve the tasks at hand and how did you behave when encountering some of the challenges along the way? Finally, show how your actions proved to be successful by explaining the results of your actions. If relevant, you may want to prove this also by communicating numbers and figures.

To illustrate, we have provided a sample answer for you in the Wadhefty question bank.

 

QUICK FINAL POINTER

As a best practice, consider updating this tool every 2-3 years depending on your speed of promotion and the frequency of changes in experience. Taking my personal experience as a yardstick for comparison, I have updated the tool at least 4 to 5 times over the course of my 5 year career.

 

Good luck with your tool and make sure to have fun with it!

Most comprehensive guide to job related events this Ramadan in Dubai

Are you sitting idly this Ramadan and feel frustrated at the lack of momentum and feedback you are getting from your job hunt?

We feel your pain. But did you know that this doesn’t have to be the case?

To help you pick up speed, we have scoured the entire web to find a few hidden gems that you can explore this Ramadan. In total, these 11 events below will help you either pick up a new skill that can bolster your credentials or will serve to help you expand your network.

Be sure to click on the “hosted by” link for more information on a particular event.

Happy exploring!

June 8

What to expect:

Offers a free IELTS Masterclass™ designed for candidates preparing to take the IELTS test. It will provide:

  • Practical tips on how best to enhance your English
  • Insights into common mistakes you can avoid
  • Interactive tasks using the assessment criteria

Price:

Free

IELTS class

 

What to expect:

This isn’t a traditional networking event. There are no sales pitches or “upsells” – it’s just a relaxed and informal get-together of likeminded people, with a friendlier and more supportive atmosphere than we’ve found at any other event.

 

Price:

Free

the property hub logo

June 9

 

What to expect:

A Workshop that will address the following 5 areas:

  1. Why cash flow is king over profit & turnover
  2. Uncover hidden cash in your business
  3. Cash flow strategies via case studies
  4. Funding growth through cash flow
  5. Cash flow for business valuation

 

Price:

Free

xcel accounting

June 10

 

What to expect:

The course covers topics relating the LEED building certification program. Areas covered include:

  • Introduction to the Sustainability and LEED rating systems
  • Learn and practice the three exam areas – Recognition, Application, and Analysis
  • Identify the key components of the LEED for Green Building Design + Construction Rating System
  • Discuss the requirements and implementation strategies of each credit/prerequisite.
  • Sustainable Sites
  • Water Efficiency
  • Energy & Resources
  • Indoor Environmental Quality
  • Innovation in Design
  • Regional priority
  • Learn how to use LEED Online
  • Learn how to document for LEED projects

Price:

500 AED

chicago institute for management training

June 11

 

What to expect:

The workshop will offer participants the chance to explore Human-Centered Design and empathy driven solutions. Promoted widely by design firms like IDEO and Stanford University’s D School, Design Thinking is now on the must know tools of all major companies. The course looks at different aspects of radical thinking and can be seen as a new approach to deal with Growth, Innovation and Problem Solving. Though designing, as a craft requires years of dedicated education and talent, this workshop does not require a prior experience in Design and is open to anyone with a desire to learn new techniques of innovation.

 

Price:

$1,200/ 4,400 AED

design thinking workshop

 

  • Visualizing the Invisible – The Personal Framework, hosted by: Osama Natto

 

What to expect:

A hands-on workshop that will provide you with the tools you need to discover yourself and plan for the coming years. In just three hours, you will learn how to develop your own “big picture.” Topics covered include:

  • Discovering your personal values
  • Determining your purpose in life
  • Finding balance in your life
  • Understanding your true needs
  • Managing your emotions
  • Dealing with love, family, business, studies, health, projects, and personal development
  • Facing your worries and fears
  • Coming to closure with unfinished business

 

Price:

$68.06 – $81.68/ 250 AED – 300 AED

personal framework

June 12

 

What to expect:

OnBoarders is a low key event that is free to BBG members, specifically aimed at new members and those who want to dip their toe in the networking water. If you aren’t yet a BBG member and would like to come and ‘try before you buy’ you are welcome to attend this event.

 

Price:

50 AED

british business group

 

What to expect:

The course is aimed at professionals seeking PMP certification and will address a variety of areas, including:

  • Project Management Framework
  • Project Life Cycle & Organization
  • Project Management Process
  • Project Management Knowledge areas

Price:

Dependent on group size

 

June 15

  • A morning with Alan Cohen, Co-Chair of the Harvard Principal’s Center and Co-Founder of Project Zero New York City, hosted by: Clarion School

 

What to expect:

Alan Cohen will speak about his work at the Harvard University Graduate School for Education.

 

Price:

Free

igniting curiosity

 

June 20

What to expect:

Join strangers for a discussion with Gunjan Tripathy, an experienced Nutrition Consultant & Health Coach, who will share tips on healthy eating.

Confirm your presence by sending a whatsapp message to 050 7684490

 

Price:

20 AED

change initiative

 

What to expect:

Meet internationally certified faculty and friendly students; tour the downtown campus and speak to qualified Enrollment Officers so you can pick the program that’s right for you! On the spot Admission and Registration is available.

Visit the Canadian University Dubai Open House and have a chance to learn about our Undergraduate and Graduate programs, meet with Students and Faculty from your favourite programs, enroll for Summer & Fall 2016.

 

Price:

Free

ramadan open house

Got events in your area that you think we should add to the list? Reach us at help@wadhefty.com with your suggestions

 

 

What is a CV?

bigstock-Job-recruitment-90802991The term ‘Curriculum Vitae’, or CV, sometimes referred to as a résumé, is a summary of your career history that is often the first part in getting yourself noticed by a potential employer.

Why CVs are required
When employers have a vacancy they need to fill they will create a list of the skills and experience they want the ideal candidate to have. From this list, the job ad is created, which is where they will ask you to send them your CV.

How closely your CV matches the qualification they are seeking is the key factor in determining whether they see you as a suitable person to join their company.

A CV allows you to decide which information is most relevant to each role you apply for. To make an imapct your CV should be:

  • concise
  • truthful
  • engaging
  • thorough

The key word here is concise. It’s not a place to list all of your achievements and experiences as this would make it very long and would be a turn off for most employers.

Your personal sales tool

Your CV is your opportunity to sell your candidacy to an employer. You want to sell your your experience and your demonstrated ability to excel at the job. Selling is all about attracting attention and appealing to what the employer is looking for so highlight your strengths and achievements to interest the recruiter.

If you’re a recent graduate and can’t demonstrate a long career history, you can still list internship experience, part time work, volunteer work, and leadership roles in student organizations explaining how the experiences you’ve gained during these will help you in your future career.

Preparing your CV
There is no perfect layout format and different people in different situations will need to lay their document out in a different way.

A CV with clearly headed sections will be appreciated by employers and it will allow them to find the details they’re after easily. This means clarity, good spacing and short, sensible blocks of information.

Every CV should include the following sections:

  • Personal details
  • Education
  • Experience

There are additional sections that you could also decide to include

  • Personal statement
  • Technical Skills
  • References

All information should be listed in reverse chronological order (ie. With the most recent at the top), allowing your reader to see what you’ve done recently, then to continue reading if they think it’s relevant to their needs.

It can be a daunting prospect putting together your CV, but it’s a lot easier if you remember three key things; Employers want to know how your experiences match their requirements, it’s better to go for quality over quantity, and finally, your CV is designed to get you the interview, not the job.