5th article for school leavers


HOW TO FIND A JOB 

You have now decided on a way forward and have established a direction in life you want to follow. I trust you have also compiled an impressive CV? That then completes the preliminary work. That in fact was the easy part, now comes the challenge. 

There are many ways to go about finding a job so let’s have a brief look at some of the more important ones. Do not concentrate on just finding a job, look at the big picture, visualise your future, and seek employment that offers a potential career path. 

What most young people do today is to circulate a CV and/or respond to advertisements in the press or on line.  

  1. Register with a reputable Employment Agency 

  • Contact the employment agencies in your area and particularly those that specialise in the type of career you have decided to follow. There is no point in going to a secretarial agency if your choice of career is in the retail sector. 

  • Make contact with the Association of Personnel Organisations and check on the specific agencies that you wish to deal with. The Association will be happy to point you in the right direction and will be able to provide details of registered members. 

  • Make an appointment to meet with a representative of the agency and explain what you are looking for in terms of your career. Leave a copy of your CV with them and ask them to assist you in your quest for employment. 

  • Dress in an appropriate manner to create a good impression. Denims and takkies are out. A neat and clean appearance is important. Keep jewelry to a minimum.

     

    Employment agencies are not allowed to charge a registration or constancy fee 

  1. Make use of the classified section of newspapers 

  • Study the advertisements carefully. Make note of the qualifications that are required before you apply. Do not waste your time in replying if you do not fall into the category the advertiser is looking for. This will avoid frustration. 

  • If you are required to post, fax or e-mail your CV put a brief covering letter with it. Make your letter interesting and try to captivate the attention of the reader. The purpose of the letter is to encourage the reader to study your CV. Sell yourself. 

    When writing such a letter be courteous and refer to the person to whom you are writing as Sir or Madam. Show respect. This might sound “corny” to you now, but it is important to a potential employer. 

  • If you are required to telephone, make sure you speak to the correct person. Speak confidently, clearly and slowly. Be polite, business-like and avoid being over chatty. Explain the reason for your call and request a suitable time for an interview. Make a note of the date, time and venue for the interview. 

  1. Approach companies directly 

  • Visit specific companies and try to set up appointments with the recruitment officer or personnel Manager. It is better to visit personally and to try to meet face to face rather than telephone and set up an appointment. First impressions are important and it is easier to create a good first impression face to face. Explain the reason for your call and ask if it would be convenient to have a brief meeting or if it would be more suitable to set up an appointment. Dress as outlined above and do not use first names when speaking to the manager. Be respectful in every way. 

  • Send your CV with a covering letter to companies that operate in the field you wish to enter. You covering letter should be brief and professional. It should be written in such a way that it will encourage the manager to look at your CV. Request the opportunity to meet in order to discuss your career aspirations. Suggest potential dates and times that would suit you. 

    You are seeking a position at a particular so under no circumstances make or give the impression you are demanding or feel you are entitled to anything. Humility and a courteous approach will get you a lot further. 

    In preparing for the interview, you should try to find out more about the company. 

  • Who are they and what do they do?

  • Where do they operate?

  • Who their main competitor is?

  • How long have they been in existence?

  • What is their reputation in the market?

  • Consider why you like to join this particular company?

  • What can they offer in terms of your career?

  • Why do you want to take a job there? 

The interview is the most important part of your quest for employment, treat it as such. Have the courage of your convictions and go out and make things happen. Nothing will come to you. You must look for your own opportunities in life. 

© Des Squire (Managing Member) 

AMSI and ASSOCIATES cc 

des@amsiandassociates.co.za

 

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