By now, you may have taken Career Studies and the terms “resumé”, “interview skills” and “job application” are old news. In more recent news might be your developing leadership goals, impending independence or interest in investing.
With that in mind, getting a part-time job to kickstart your career or start saving is key to your success. Here’s a quick refresher on some top tips to employ as you become the ideal applicant for that prime part-time job…
A great resumé is easy to skim. Employers are comparing lots of candidates, so you want your strengths to jump off the page at them! One of the simplest ways to do this is to use clear headings and concise bullet points. Pro tip: Always check that bullets are written in the same tense and tone.
A good resumé is totally truthful and carefully crafted to let you flex your most relevant skills. Remember, skills aren’t just things like knowing a code language or being great with kids; they can also be broad skill sets like project leadership, communication, organization, or creativity. Pro tip: Start your bullet points with strong verbs (led, created, taught, developed, etc.) to highlight your strengths and show your confidence.
It’s always worth taking the time to personalize your cover letter (the one-page letter you attach with your resumé). Use it to show more of your personality and passions, and how your skills relate specifically to this job and this company. Pro tip: Create a basic framework, then make each letter unique to that role and employer by swapping out a paragraph or two.
Someday you’re going to be faced with one of those “Which Marvel superhero are you most like?” or “How do you go about building the perfect burger?” questions. Don’t let them throw you off! Rather than stressing over a non-existent “right” answer, focus on showcasing a strength or a unique quality as the rationale for your answer.
When you get asked about weaknesses or areas of growth, stay positive and keep your focus long-term. What skill sets do you need to develop in order to be a leader in this environment? What skills are you currently trying to learn? What’s an example of how you have accepted (and acted on) critical feedback in the past?
You may be asked if you have any questions for the interviewer at the end. When you are, take the opportunity to ask questions that show you’ve done some research on the company, that you’re interested in what they do or how they’re growing, and that you want to learn and add value as much as you can.
Laurier's Career Centre is packed with resources that can help you find (and secure) a job that's just right for you. From one-on-one advising to pro headshot sessions to job boards covering a wide range of fields and job profiles of past Laurier grads, our Career Centre team loves supporting Laurier students (and alumni!) in showcasing their strengths and finding the perfect career fit.