Along with the rest of my summer activities (which mostly consists of sleeping in, watching Netflix, and eating cheesesticks), I’ve done what a good percentage of all college students have done and applied for a summer job. Although I have done a good lot of volunteer work, community service, and other non-paying workshops around the local area, I had never had an actual paying job before. It was a new experience, and in different ways was easier and more difficult than I had expected.
First and foremost came finding where I wanted to work. I had a couple of places in mind, but I wasn’t exactly sure where would be the ideal place for me to work. I had picked a couple coffeehouses, restaurants, retail stores and janitorial work, seeing as I’m a total master of the custodial arts from my volunteer experiences. Once I picked out the places I wanted to go, then the rest came with simply waltzing in, asking if they were hiring and, if they were, asking for an application.
Filling out the applications and returning them was the hardest part of the process for me. I don’t have that much experience under my belt, making it difficult to get hired. Instead, I flaunted a lot of the volunteer work in a resume I had created alongside my applications. Resumes are a huge, glorified list of your skills, previous experience, leadership, and volunteer work. Even though I had never worked professionally, I was still able to get the job I wanted due to what I was able to bring to the table. Showcasing your best assets in your applications will highlight everything you are capable of doing for the job.
Organization is also a major kicker here. You have to keep track of who you have applied to and whether or not they are searching for new employees. Organization, however, is not exactly my middle name… so I kind of had a spot of trouble with this. However, smart phones are handy things to have. I used mine to list all the jobs I had applied for on my notepad app, and the rest was history.
One very aggravating part of the whole job search field is waiting. Yours truly does not like waiting. Yet like a lot of things in life, it is a necessary evil. You are going to have to give the employers and managers some time to look over your application and see whether or not they think you would be helpful in the their line of work. It will take some time, but sometimes giving them a bit of space is probably the best way to increase your chances of actually getting hired. It’s a bit strange, but it’s true.
Of course, later on, you have to fill in that space with your awesome presence. After a little while of patiently giving them time to sort things out, revisit the places to which you’ve applied. Ask them if they’re still hiring new people for work. If you do it well, the employers working there will probably write your name down and remember that you visited. These little visits will show that you’re dedicated and highly interested in working at this job. This, obviously, is going to give you a major boost over the rest of your competition in the work place and help you get a little extra brownie points for getting hired.
Yet you don’t want to overdo it with the visiting. You should revisit once or twice- three times tops. The reason being is, plainly, you don’t want to seem desperate. At this point, if they are interested in hiring you, they will do so. If not, then that’s tough luck, but there will be plenty more opportunities to come. Again, that patience factor is going to contribute a lot here. You will have to rely on it while doing the “ye olde job search”, but trust me- it will be worth it.
As for my own personal job search, things panned out pretty well. After tirelessly handing out a ton of applications (Well, maybe just ten, but who’s counting?), I finally got a call back from a local coffee shop in Middlesboro, KY, that was looking for a new waitress and–wait for it–custodians. After looking over my resume that I’d given them, they called me in for a job interview. The interview went pretty well and the very next day, they called my phone and asked me to come in and begin work! It was a pretty nice experience over all.
If you’d like to share some of your experiences getting hired, leave a comment, like this post, or follow me. I’d love to hear from you guys!