How to Get Your Dream Job part 2 of 3

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dream_job2Job applications and interviews

This is part 2 in my “how to get your dream job”-series. If you missed part one, you can read it here. You should read part one before further reading. In part one I wrote about finding your own values and interest. The form used in part one will come to great use in this part as when you are looking for your dream job, you should be checking it against the form provided in part one.

My perfect match
Consider the jobs offered against the form, and if you can find out the company values as well it is a bonus. You can find it on their web site, if not give them a call, and ask. If the first person knows the answer the values are not just a piece of paper. Everybody should know the company values from the top management to all the people on the floor. You can also ask if the company is involved in any good causes. The answers you receive are gold in your hunt for your dream job.

Time to proceed
You have now found some jobs you want to apply to. Write a good application and include your own values and that you would like to work with this company because of its values and because of its engagement in this specific cause. You will therefore have great ownership as you believe in the same set of standards as they do. Also include your skills from part one where you match and point out that you can contribute to further support the company values.

The job interview
I have done a lot of job interviews during my career, one thing I have learned is to trust my guts. So when do you talk to my “guts”? – Talk is a key word here. I like people that are able to talk without needing a lot of questions. I have decided to hire people after 20 seconds; I have hired people after 3 hours of job interviewing over several rounds. Prepared people have a head start. I once had a girl at a job interview bringing a lot of notes about our web site correcting errors and having questions about information that was incorrect on the web site! I have had interviews with people that did not know the name of the company…

Focus on the values
You know that you are a match with the company, flip the side around and ask to interview the employer. Talk about their values, what they do to follow them in their daily routines. What are the consequences if someone fails to live up to their values? You should know the cause the company is involved in. If you share this cause, ask how they contribute? Is there room for your personal engagement in this cause? Explain that you are asking this to settle if there is a match between their values and your values as you are looking for your dream job. Do state every match you have. Don’t worry too much about the specific job as they will most likely tell you about it. You will show that you are prepared; you will show that you understand their values, and you will show that you are a match to their values. There might be smart to wait until the end of the interview as some interviewers might not like interruptions from their waste of time personality testing.

Do try to look good
I saw this interesting article on BBC – I do not mind alternative people. I actually love people that are original. You might have a strange hair cut and strange clothes. But do have a fresh hair cut and clean clothes. Take a shower before arriving at the interview and try to smell good. Show that you make an effort of looking good. That gives an impression of you making an effort to get the job, and this means that you WANT the job. Show your true colors, but show your bright and clean colors. Do not change to get the job, as that means that something failed in your research to find your dream job. I hope you understand my point, as I would hire Rebecca Knowles-Dixon from the BBC link if she would have researched the company values and wanted to work with us. – My underlined point is: Do not change your personality, but do try to appear fresh and clean. If you manage to have the company logo as a tattoo already that is a bonus displaying excellent engagement. [Just kidding…Do NOT get a tattoo of the company logo!]

Good luck on your job hunt! – Check back soon to read part three for a surprise ending. Don’t want to miss part three? Subscribe to blog updates by e-mail and get part three in your inbox.

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6 Comments on "How to Get Your Dream Job part 2 of 3"

  1. Frode Heimen | July 20, 2009 at 7:33 pm |

    Hello Kyle.
    I think I must find other resources for part 2.5 as I appreciate creative applications. 🙂 I would not suggest that an application would be delivered acoustic and live with guitar singing an application song 😀 But that would impress me. If someone have great links about writing good job applications, please do post them here. As it would add a great part 2.5 addition to this series.

    Cheers.

  2. Again, another good post for the series. Perhaps an additional, “part 2.5,” could be added that covers the additional aspects of what makes a “good” application, beyond what you have already recommended in this article (including personal values and why you want to work for the company)?

    -Kyle

  3. Hi Frode,

    Oh I do agree – you need to be yourself (show your true colors) – it’s the only way that you will know if the job is a right fit for you and they will know if you are a right fit for the company.

    Best,
    Gina

  4. Frode Heimen | July 9, 2009 at 4:02 pm |

    @Steve: Thank you for your kind words. I will keep writing, so keep reading 🙂

    @Gina: That is a great addition, think about how you appear in social media. I do think that there is a clear line between job and time off, but you are right, you should think twice before writing or displaying material that could damage your career. But as a manager I do care about what you do at work, what you do outside work is none of my business as long at it does not put you down on your work. And yes, more and more employers do check the online precence before hireing. But again, if you show your true colors and still get the job, that is most likely closer to your dream job 🙂

  5. Enjoyed Part II also! I think for younger people it is also important to remember to make sure where you appear publically – FaceBook, Twitter, etc – shows your professional side along with a fun side (but keep the fun side clean!). Your photo should also be professional. Employers will search for you out on the Internet.

    Great post!

    Best,
    Gina

    Gina Abudi’s last blog post..Poll Question: What is the Most Difficult Part of Pulling Together a Project Team

  6. Frode,

    This is a really good and useful series.

    Why?

    Because you are giving advice from the standpoint of a manager who is experienced. Your background adds even more credibility to the advice.

    Keep writing…

    Steve Roesler’s last blog post..Managers Build Talent

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