Ask Questions and Make Connections
People who ask questions and keep a conversation moving are better liked and succeed more than those who don’t, according to research from Harvard.
Follow-up questions—comments that indicate surprise or interest—were shown to be the most effective way to indicate attentiveness and keep a conversation from ending. Yet research has also shown that many people are hesitant to ask questions, fearing that doing so will make them appear rude, intrusive, or incompetent.
That reluctance is the conversation death knell, and, the researchers found, often marks the end of a job interview. Why? Because when job candidates ask questions, they show high emotional intelligence and showcase what they can contribute to the organization.
From Harvard Business Review
Build a Network Beyond Peers
Developing a plan to build a network that goes beyond the cadre of associates a job seeker regularly sees requires looking at one’s world from a 360-degree perspective. Experts suggest the following steps:
Tapping every aspect of daily life. People who go to a gym can start talking to the person on the Peloton next to them. Striking up a conversation with neighbors or at a place of worship can also lead to connections.
Joining groups. Professional organizations are tailor made for networking and offer opportunities to become involved in the group’s activities.
Harnessing the power of LinkedIn. Using first, second, and third-degree connections has become one of the best ways to grow a network.
Applicant-screening systems are notorious for overlooking the résumés of young job seekers. Put into place to help make the selection of candidates less biased, the algorithms frequently eliminate candidates due to subtle misinterpretations of data, all the while the job seekers may not even realize they are being ignored by strings of code.
However, a recent article in The Wall Street Journal suggests ways to get around these robotic nay-sayers.
- Integrate specific results-oriented statements into résumé
- Choose words from the job description to weave into résumé
- Include keywords for technical and interpersonal skills.
- Quantify results with statistics.
- Use a Word document to upload your résuméinstead of a PDF.
- Try to find a contact within the organization to recommend you.