JustJobs interviews professionals working in a variety of fields. The good folks there have given me permission to post some of their interviews here. So if you’re wondering what it’s like to work in a specific field, you might want to check in here frequently. I’ll be posting interviews as I get them.
Have you thought about becoming a news editor? This professional shares her job search experience with AsianHires.com, where interviews with Asian professionals from different fields like a Graphic Designer and a Computer Engineer can be found.
I’m a female of Asian descent in my 40s and I’ve been a news editor and photographer for the past 13 years. I previously worked as a Chamber of Commerce director, but worked closely with the media. That connection paid off when I was ready for a career change. A professional friend with a newspaper I had dealt with contacted me when she was moving to a different newspaper and encouraged me to apply for her position. Before I could even get my resume delivered, the editor was at my door offering me the job. Journalism positions were scarce in my area at the time and I had been seeking sales and marketing jobs. I was grateful to land a rewarding position in my career field.
I like niche job search engines as well as different state job sites. For instance, Florida has several sites with an entire section dedicated to job seekers. I enrolled on several and still receive regular emails with positions available that fit my profile.
Standing out in a crowd of applicants is tough these days, but showcasing my past work would certainly be a tool I would use if I were applying for my same position tomorrow. Another simple, but meaningful, way I’ve found to make an impression is by following up an interview with a thank you note. At one point in my career search, I was interviewed by two people, which is sometimes a little intimidating. However, I really connected with both of them and could tell immediately they felt comfortable with me. I sent a thank you letter to both of them as soon as the interview was over. Mailed it the old fashioned way and really made it personal. They called me and were clearly impressed. Unfortunately, someone else was promoted from within their company and they made it clear in the phone call they wanted me over this person, but higher-level management wanted to promote a current employee at the company. Several months later, that employee was gone. But the two that interviewed me tracked me down at my new job and offered me the position.
Facebook has become my favorite online means of connecting with others in the business community. I’ve received several invitations to join LinkedIn, but haven’t signed up just yet. I’m on Facebook daily and have over 1500 friends on my page. I also promote a small photography business I own on Facebook. I have received most of my freelance work from this site and find it one of the best ways to reach multiple people and advertise.
One job interview that stands out in my mind occurred in a hotel lobby. I was applying for a sales manager position and was so excited to even be considered for the job. The supervisor contacted me by phone and conducted a “mini-interview” of sorts, then scheduled the face-to-face meeting. He was completely different in person. Questions were quick-fired and I had a ready response to each of them. But one that shocked me was, “When is the last time you went on a job interview?” It was as if I was too prepared, if that is possible. He seemed under the impression I was too rehearsed with my answers. Someone with a little more sales experience wound up with the position, but I learned an important lesson: Don’t get answers that sound like you have practiced them over and over in front of your mirror. Be sincere and speak from the heart. Of course, being professional is a must, but I learned you need to relax on a job interview and make the person interviewing feel comfortable and trust you are telling the truth in your responses.
I have found the most important aspect of a job search is persistence. Finding a job – especially the right job – is hard work. Learning how to handle rejection is extremely important. Understanding that “no” isn’t a bad word because the job simply may not be right for you and, in the long run, you may be grateful for being turned down for a position. If you are unemployed – and this has happened to me once – you must force yourself to get out of bed every day, get dressed from head to toe, and actively search. Lounging around in your pajamas will get you nowhere fast. True, you can search online in your sweat pants and land that perfect job. But stay busy, keep your mind busy, do something to further your career options. Join a professional organization such as a Chamber of Commerce or association related to your career field. Make those connections with others who might have a job lead you don’t find online.
I have never used the Career Services program at my university, but I’ve heard others have found success going this route.
If I had it all to do over again I would put more thought and research into my educational path. I would choose a college degree with more employment options and spend more time really studying different careers. Sometimes we look at the bottom line – salary – and make our decisions based solely on that. We have to remember it is the rest of our lives we are talking about and planning for and decide what we really, truly are passionate about when making our career choices.