Kim’s Tips for Landing Your First Job:
During an interview, if you are asked to do a task that is below you – DO IT. Any task, even taking the garbage out or getting coffee, can be a growing one. A smile can go along way as well. Big wigs in companies are always doing a hundred things at once. If you can handle a stressful task or situation with a smile, people will trust you with even larger tasks. I volunteered at multiple music festivals for free so that I could make contacts in the industry. With a smile, I fetched water and cleaned artists’ trailers, but during that time, I got to network with managers and agents. Eventually, they started giving me better jobs and called me for shows in my area because they enjoyed working with me.
One of the best tips I was even given was by a music industry professor during my Sophomore year of college. He told me: “When you are asked if you know how to do something, never lie and say you know how to do it if you don’t, instead say, ‘No but if you give me _______ (10 minutes, 1 day, 1 week) and I can learn.” We are from the age of technology; anything we will ever need to know is online. Show employers that you are willing to work hard and adapt to any situation you’re given.
Every job I have even gotten, internship or paying job, has been because of the people I know. Networking is extremely important. Everyone you meet in social or business situations can come in handy in landing a future job. Make a list of people you know or your parents know in your industry that you know and reach out to them. People love helping young professionals out. Even if they are not hiring, they usually enjoy giving advise or contact info to some they know that is hiring.
Showing that you can maintain professionalism in any situation is extremely important to employers. Your composure in stressful situations such as an interview will foreshadow how you handle equally stressful situations if you are hired. Speak with confidence and NEVER use slang. In written mediums, always address a person with their honorific (Mr, Mrs, Ms) when first making contact. As well as, adding a professional closing such as Respectfully Yours, Sincerely, Best wishes, All the best, and Warm regards.
A hand-written note saying thank you for the interview, volunteer opportunity, internship or any of other learning experience really sets you a part. Though you should always write a thank you note via email or snail mail, a hand-written note shows the person you spent more than two minutes on the morning bus to say thank you. It shows that you spent time, thought and a whole $0.47 to show appreciation for the time they spent with you.
***tips from personal experience as well as research from various career websites***