Jobs and Careers Autumn 2017 - 25
bothered to learn anything new, it's
almost a deal breaker.
Having in-depth knowledge of the
company you're applying to will help
you stand out. I expect an interviewee
to have thoroughly researched what
we as a company do, who we are, what
our position is, what our USPs are and
how we compare to our competitors.
I interviewed a finance director
recently and the first question I
asked was if he'd downloaded our
accounts from Company's House.
He said no, and after five minutes I'd
lost interest. It said a lot about his
approach to work, even though on
paper I would have hired him. I was
put off because he hadn't bothered.
A CV will tell the interviewer that
you can do the job, but it doesn't tell
them that you're the right person.
Work is about attitude, determination,
work ethic, approach, creativity and
thinking outside the box. By the time
you get an interview, logic should apply
- there's already a match, so what's
the objective? It's a chance to see how
suitable you are to the organisation
and that's about you, not your CV.
What is the main thing to
remember when you walk
into the interview room?
It's a two-way dialogue. The
perception of most candidates
is that the interviewer will be
doing most, if not all, of the talking,
but there should be a 50/50 split
between you and the interviewer.
As soon as you are invited for an
interview, go on LinkedIn and look at
the profile of the person interviewing
you so you know a bit about their
background and work history. Set a
Google alert on the company so you're
up to date on any new information.
Also think about what you'll be
talking about, what questions you'll
ask, the position, the number of
people in the company, the reporting
lines, your role and what the company
will use to gauge or measure your
performance. All these will enable
you to converse with the interviewer,
which will in turn enable them to see
that you're interested and enthusiastic
about the company and the role.
What are your tips for
using social media
to your advantage when
looking for a job?
You need to be very conscious
that employers have the same
access to social media as
everyone else - I think candidates
forget that. Whenever you're putting
up a photo or post on social media,
always ask, "Do I want my employer to
see it?" I've spoken to employers who
have been put off candidates because
of what they've seen on social media.
What does your picture on LinkedIn
say about you, for example? It's
amazing how many profiles have a
photo of someone sitting on a beach
or at a party, which is inappropriate.
All forms of social media
have become big sources of job
opportunities - they are the most
important channels now and this
will only become more true as time
goes on. It's the new norm when it
comes to finding job opportunities.
How important is a
I think a degree is key. It isn't
just about the academic
qualification - it's what else
you learn in those three years that is
also important. University helps you to
grow and interact with other people
- it's a time for personal development.
In the competitive world we live
in, the other candidates for your job
are likely to have a degree. Landing
a job is a competitive situation, so
you want everything in place to
make it easier for you, not harder.
Do you think doing
In the past three to five
years there has been a
huge surge of interest in
apprenticeships, and there are
thousands of opportunities out there.
Employers are more aware of them
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