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50 Tips For How to Make a Career

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How do I become successful? Everyone will have asked this question. However, the answer isn't easy to give. There is no manual that directly leads to a career. There are, however, ways to make career a little easier. We are happy to help you and together with a number of other experts put together 50 tips to make a career for you! A must read for a good career.

Part (1): What do I actually want?

Tip 1: What am I doing now?

First identify where you're now. Your job title and your resume already say something about you, but take a few days to properly record what you're doing exactly. Start with the main tasks of your position and then note everything else that you do in your daily routine. Put all tasks in lists with for example: Fun, Less fun, and Not fun.

Tip 2: What do I want to do?

When the first inventory is ready, it's time to focus on the things that you like and that you would like to do every day. It may seem like a waste of time, but see it as an investigation into and for yourself. Know your purpose. People with a clear direction become a kind of magnet for others. People want to be close to people like that.

Tip 3: Do I still want this in 5 years?

Take the list of tasks that you want to do, and think "Do I still want to do this in one year?" And in two to five years too. Don't be discouraged if you're not sure. It's sometimes difficult to imagine what your life will look like in five years.

Tip 4: First 'who', then 'what'.

Ask yourself the questions: who can help me? Who already does what I want to do? Who works in an environment where I want to work? Approach those people and surround yourself with them.

Tip 5: Evaluate the answers

The purpose of the lists above is to help you determine which functions contain the tasks you enjoy doing. If you have found the function (s), remember that this is the perfect function for you, and take this function as the starting point for the following questions:

  • Do you want to perform this function at your current level or a level higher?
  • Do you want to lead in this position?
  • Which companies / organizations have these functions?
  • Do you know anyone in this position so that you can request a network call?

When you have answered all the questions, you have a good evaluation of yourself.

Tip 6: Know your own core values

Core values ​​are a few very personal determining beliefs that say what you stand for. Perhaps "adventure" is a core value for you, or "honesty." If you properly comply with your own values, you're very reliable and congruent, and therefore nice to work with. You also prevent accidental careers in an environment that doesn't suit you at all, because they have different values ​​than you. 365 days successful shows how you find out your core values.

Tip 7: You're never too old to learn

Make sure that you're constantly trained in your field. Don't always look at your employer, but make sure that you're at the wheel and make sure that you keep your knowledge up to date. In addition to the regular range of courses, there is much to be found on the internet: from TED talks to courses offered, whether or not for a fee.

Part (2): A good resume

Tip 8: Write results-oriented

The hiring party would like to know what your contribution will be to the company. Your resume must be clear about the results you have achieved in previous positions. For example, indicate that you have supervised project x and that the result was that the project was successfully completed within the time and / or budget.

Tip 9: Keep it short!

Your resume must not be too long. You have to sell your experience "quickly". A standard resume is 1 or 2 pages. Write your last 1 or 2 (relevant) work experience in full, but don't describe jobs from the past in detail. Specially for those who have a long work experience it's not interesting to know what you did in function x in 1985.

Tip 10: Say it with numbers

Display as many numbers as possible. The hiring party loves numbers. They like it when you have put the time into quantifying your own growth. Certainly in the field of sales, marketing and finance you must clearly demonstrate how you have contributed to a higher turnover and profit for the company. The figures show that you want to commit yourself to achieving results and that you want to grow as employees.

Tip 11: Make your resume tailor-made

Make sure that your resume is always tailor-made for every position or potential employer. Make sure you have a basic resume and always adjust it to the position and / or employer where you're going to apply. With each new application, emphasize your different strengths depending on the position and employer where you're applying.

Tip 12: Overview through white spaces

Provide enough "white" space. Just like yourself getting dressed up in an interview, your resume must also look sleek and professional. If you're not handy in drawing up a resume, there are examples on the internet. If this is too complicated and you have an up-to-date Linkedin page, Linkedin offers a tool to convert your Linkedin profile into a resume.

Part (3): The cover letter

Tip 13: The salutation

Always address your cover letter to a specific person. The times of only Dear HRM or LS are over. If you can't trace the correct name from the text, search for the correct name through Google, Twitter or LinkedIn. In this way you show that you have taken the trouble to investigate to whom you should address the letter.

Tip 14: The introduction

The best first rule is if you can appoint a joint contact. This will make you stand out immediately and ensure that your cover letter comes on top of the pile. Use Linkedin to check if you know someone at the future employer and ask him / her if you can name him or her in your cover letter.

Tip 15: The body

After the introduction you briefly present your experiences in no more than three bullets. Your cover letter is your chance to explain why you're the best person for the job. And just as it's important to always tailor your resume, you do the same with your cover letter. Both must always be in line for the position you're applying for. Take over 3 requested qualifications from the vacancy text and add your qualities briefly.

Then write in the form of a story what your previous work experiences have been and how you'll use these experiences to contribute to your new position. Also tell something or your work experience that's not on the resume. Most people like to read a short story instead of a dry list.

Tip 16: Completion

The last part of your cover letter must contain a few sentences about how they can contact you and when you'll call the application. Call about 2 weeks after you have sent your cover letter and resume. If you don't get in touch, try again and leave it at that.

Tip 17: Match between resume and cover letter

Make sure that your cover letter has the same look and feel as your resume. This makes it clear that you have thought carefully about your own "marketing".

Part (4): The job interview

Tip 18: Good preparation is half the work

Make sure your homework is done. The biggest complaint from recruiters and HR managers is that the candidates know very little about the company they are applying for. Visit the company's website, go through the entire website and note the things that are important, such as vision, services, locations, competitors and the market.

Tip 19: LinkedIn is your best friend

Do you know which companies and / or organizations you'll apply for? Then take a look at LinkedIn to see who works at this company. If it's someone from your 1st circle, you can approach him or her directly and ask him or her for example about:

  • How do they experience the company?
  • What is the atmosphere like?
  • What are the dress codes?
  • Who is your conversation partner during the job interview?

Tip 20: Google is your other best friend

By googling yourself, you know what the company can find about you and already know, because every recruiter will Google you on the internet. If you find negative things, make sure you have an answer.

Tip 21: Determine the needs of the company

The fact that questions such as "Why should we hire you" always emphasizes you doesn't mean that your answers must be about you. Discover the needs of the person opposite you and answer them. Answers that show that you can relieve their pain points make a big difference compared to other candidates.

Tip 22: Think from the filter of the other

How do you do that? Entrenpreneur platform figured it out. Start by asking questions. Specially many open questions. Only then will you find out what someone else actually wants and wants from you.

Tip 23: What are you the solution for?

Companies don't hire people just for hiring. But companies do hire people to solve problems. Monsterboard indicates that during the application process it's about how you can contribute to someone else's problem or purpose. If you can be a solution for these problems or goals and that's well expressed in your cover letter, your resume and during interviews, there is a good chance that you'll find the job you're looking for!

Tip 24: Do I meet the requirements?

Read the vacancy text carefully and note the most important requirements and priorities for this position. Then make it very clear in your cover letter that it's you who has these requirements and what you can contribute to that. Use a paragraph to specifically explain what your strengths are in relation to the requirements. Make sure that this part doesn't repeat what is already in your resume.

Tip 25: Interview yourself

Ask yourself before every interview "Why am I the best choice for this job?" . Stick post-it notes on the fridge, on the mirror in the bathroom, and wherever you go in the house. And every time you walk past a post-it, you say out loud why you're the best choice. The more you do this, the more it becomes your own.

Tip 26: Practice makes perfect

Play a job interview with another person. Use the 7 questions from tip 20 to 26 for this. It would be best if you filmed the conversation. It's not necessary that you learn all the answers by heart, but it's more about a general strategy for answering the questions.

Tip 27: Learn from previous applications

Keep an overview of all your applications, see for example the image below. Write down the date and time, how long the conversation lasted, your impression of the recruiter or HR manager, what questions were asked and what answers you gave, and specially note the most important questions that you thought the answer could be better. Study this for your next application.

Tip 28: Stay positive

Stay positive in your answers to all questions. Also, stay positive about your previous employers and / or managers. A negative answer is actually a reflection on YOUR judgment and business insight, and not on the previous employer or manager.

Part (5): The 7 questions you can expect

Tip 29: Tell me about yourself

Although this isn't really a question, the wrong answer can be painful. The worst way to answer this question is to tell your entire life story. That's what they are absolutely not interested in. The best way to answer the question is in direct relation to the job you're applying for and why your background determines why you're the best candidate.

Tip 30: What are your strengths and weaknesses?

It's easy to talk about your strengths: you work in great detail, a team player, very inquisitive, etc. But it's also just as easy to stumble when discussing your weaknesses. Never talk about a real weakness unless it's something that you have overcome. The best answer when discussing a weak point is that you have turned a weak point into a success.

Tip 31: Where will you be in 5 years?

What employers really want to know with this question is whether the job you're applying for is close to the career path that you have defined. Show that you have looked at yourself and that you have a serious schedule for yourself. Say it's difficult for you to know which position you'll be in in five years' time, but you do want to be higher up this ladder based on your own efforts.

Tip 32: Give an example of ...

... (for example) a moment when you had a problem with a supervisor or colleague and how you solved this. The most difficult part of the work is often not the work itself, but the interaction with people in the workplace. Many people have had a problem with a supervisor or colleague somewhere in their career. If you can explain to the recruiter that you have been able to solve problems with people at work, that's a big plus.

Tip 33: What are your salary requirements?

What the employer really asks is: "Do you have realistic expectations when it comes to your salary?". Try to avoid this question in the first interview, otherwise you'll be too short and you'll probably not be invited to a second interview. When you're further in the application process and are about to talk seriously about salary, then you have to take your experience and education into account. Also take where you live or work. Salaries are higher in one region than in another. Indicate that you're flexible and that you're open to additional reimbursements / benefits.

Tip 34: Why are you leaving your current employer?

With this question your new employer would like to know what your motivation is to leave your current job. If you leave because you can't get along with your current boss, then certainly don't talk negatively about your boss, but indicate that you both have a different view of work. If the work has become boring, indicate that you're looking for a new challenge. Always discuss the positive aspects of your current job and explain why this new position is ideal for you.

Tip 35: Why should we hire you?

Keep asking yourself if they keep the focus on why your background makes you the most ideal candidate and tell what your contribution will be to the company. Let the interviewer know that one of your goals is to make their job easier by taking as much responsibility as possible and that you're already excited to start.

Part (6): Accept job or not

Tip 36: Read the Personnel Handbook

A Personnel Handbook is a window to the heart of the company. Ask for a (digital) copy and read it from front to back. You'll be amazed how much of the "personality" of the organization is included in this book.

Tip 37: Meet your future team

Now that you're about to accept the job, it's good to meet your team. So ask your future manager when you can meet the team. Your future colleagues must also have the opportunity to meet you and vice versa. A good way to do that's with a cup of coffee in a meeting room, away from the work floor.

Tip 38: Agree on the priorities

Don't accept your new job until you have agreed with your new boss on the short and long-term priorities. Make a short three slides PowerPoint presentation in which you explain for the 30, 60 and 90 days term how you'll approach your new position and the challenges. Take your new manager along with you in your short presentation, so that you can get together before you accept the job.

Tip 39: What am I going to earn?

Make sure that you not only make clear agreements about your basic salary, but also agree (if applicable) when you qualify for a bonus. Also ask about any employee benefits. This will prevent you from taking on a job where there are no employee benefits in the first year or that these are limited.

Tip 40: Practical questions

Before you accept the job, it's good to know a number of practical issues. Now that you're on a call, they are easy to ask. This includes: the first working day, number of working hours, when the salary is paid and when you hear whether you have been hired.

Tip 41: Don't bite too quickly Don't be tempted to say "yes" to an offer.

It can be very tempting to immediately say "yes". But remember that your career, and not least your health, are more important than accepting a job right away. Be convinced that this job is also the right one for YOU.

Part (7): What if I don't hear anything

Tip 42: Make a plan!

If you contact too often, you run the risk of being seen as annoying and desperate. If you do too little inquiries, you show a lack of interest. Make a schedule for yourself and stick to this schedule. Allow yourself a number of attempts over a short period. If you receive a feedback: perfect (even if it's negative). If you don't receive feedback, continue, period.

Tip 43: Stay friendly

Always stay friendly in your correspondence. Perhaps they are still interviewing other candidates and no decision has yet been taken. Or maybe you're better qualified for another position within the organization and you want to contact you about it. Anyway: stay friendly and stay professional.

Tip 44: Level the answers to your feedback question

If this is warm and thought out, the door is open for the next contact moment. If you get a not very serious or very "cold" answer, you know enough. Then don't continue to search further. Sometimes no answer is also an answer.

Tip 45: Don't take it personally

There may be 101 reasons why you'll no longer be contacted. Often this isn't intended personally. Managers often have more to do than just job interviews, and the HR department often has more job interviews and applications than they can handle.

Tip 46: The absolute don'ts!

Don't set a deadline yourself without having a very good reason. Also, try not to communicate directly with the interviewer through his personal e-mail or telephone. Another trick is criticizing the employer through social media or complaining to the employer that you don't hear anything.

Part (8): Got the job, and now?

Tip 47: Show yourself!

Communicate plans and their progress to your supervisor (s) and the team. Make sure they know you as someone who sets challenging goals and completes projects on time and within budget.

Tip 48: Develop your way to organize time and goals

Time management is incredibly valuable if you develop a method that suits you. Find a way in which you have enough space to ensure that you're also enthusiastic about what you're doing. For example, go for a day at the beach to have your annual goals listed. Choose a time / task management method and learn to work purposefully and efficiently in a way that gives you energy.

Tip 49: Healthy!

It may sound cliché, but if you want to be healthy and energetic at work, healthy food is essential. Making a career and eating healthy is difficult for many to combine. Yet it's easier than you think. Fitness tips listed 8 healthy snacks for you at work!

Tip 50: Stop having to make a career

This is an extremely self-centered and unattractive goal. Begin to deliver value. Wanting to help others. Make beautiful things. Be a leader in the area that's important to you. Then a career comes naturally and if that doesn't happen, it's also good.

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