The best jobs out there require the successful candidate to, not only stand out from the crowd, to have the appropriate qualifications and/ or experience, but to also have that wow factor. Most interviewers know whether or not they want you within the first five minutes of the interview, so you have to ooze professionalism, integrity, intelligence, and display the ability to work within the company hierarchy. You have to be able to listen and show you are able to take views and opinions onboard, while at the same time keeping your own. It is not an easy feat and the competition is tough. Moreover, with these sorts of roles, the first three months into the job are treated as an extended part of the interview process. Generally you are on probation, and if you don’t continue to come across as the diligent etc. person you were on the interview day, you could be saying sayonara.
With all that in mind here are some tips and advice on securing that role, and easing your way into a corporate future.
Create a personal brand
You need a professional image. Who are you? Who do you want to be? The moment you enter that interview room you are the public relations person for your own personal brand. First off, you need to look the part, every detail catered for. Suit, hair, face, cleans hands and nails, breath, voice, handshake, eye contact, the way you walk and hold yourself etc. You need to be confident not arrogant. Then you need to be able to live up to the expectations that your brand image creates, and further still you need to be able to maintain it. So, the image can be in part an act, but you need to be able to pull it off into the office. In essence the act becomes you. You are the person you want to be. It may be worth your while investing in STL training to develop your professionalism. You can’t over prepare for interviews and the first few weeks on the job, if of course it is something you really want.
What position do you want?
This goes hand in hand with creating your own personal brand because you will adjust your branding for what you want. Remember, although it’s about the company liking you, you need to like the company too, or you will not be fulfilled within the role. Get your head down and think about what you are looking for in a company and a role, and how you can go about achieving it. Also, think about what are your key strengths and skills, what tasks you excel in and ones not so much. Once you know what you want the whole process seems to take on a life of its own. Momentum builds and you will find it easier. Creating lists in this sort of vein is a good thing to do in preparation for an interview anyway, as most interviewers ask these sorts of questions, and you will be forearmed.
Network and build relationships
You are going to need allies at work. So, be talk to people, be friendly with them, be polite and courteous. When it comes to redundancies etc. personal relationships go a long way in keeping you safe. In addition, find out who in the company knows what specific task. If you are struggling with something work-related, you will be able to go straight to the person in the know and finish the project sooner. You can find out more about the company by networking and building ties, and this will help you progress.
Understand the business and processes. You will be able to identify issues before they become a problem and highlight them to your manager. This will make you both look good and so your manager will value you.
When you first start a job there is so much to learn. Do not be overconfident and think you know it all, as this is a surefire way to make mistakes, you need to ask questions. If you have been instructed to perform some task and are not entirely sure of the process, ask. This is far better than doing it wrong. You may feel as if you are supposed to already know it all as a new start, but this is not that case. A lot of people actually enjoy giving pearls of wisdom to newbies, so definitely ask questions. But at the same time don’t ask too many, or the same question over and over.