hullcareersjack

Your Weekly Careers Update Courtesy of Jack

Archive for the category “General”

What you know? Who you know? What you know about who you know?

Aah November… It brings all the excitement of fireworks, application forms and careers fairs. Well over 1000 of you came down to our last one (not strictly November, but close enough) so there must be something a little bit exciting about it. We’re aware the Law School ran another one for all you budding lawyers. We’ve collected a couple of wigs that must have fallen off as you all went rushing over.

But looking to the future, you’ll end up heading to plenty more of these events. Jobs aren’t that easy to come by. So how are you supposed to make the most of these events?

It’s about what you know.

It’s also about who you know.

More accurately, it’s all about what you know about who you want to know, and what that person thinks about you.

Bit of a mouthful.

If you are walking into a careers fair with every intention of entering your chosen field, you should be swotting up on who is going to be present and what sort of service they seek to offer. You are going in there to meet your potential employers – to make good impressions.

The same applies to emails too though. Make sure you know what you’re doing and you know who you’re talking to. Remember, this is more than likely the first impression this particular person from this particular company has of you. With this in mind, don’t do this:

 

Dear Mr. Almighty,

My name is Reilly Desperate and i am about too finish my degree in Business at Uni. I really like your company because i’m really good at English and i no this is what publishers do. I have good attention to detail and i am a very committed person.

Please find attached a copy of my CV.

Warm regards,

Reilly

* * *

Dear Reilly,

    Thank you for your interest in our company.

    A crucial aspect of our work includes e-mail communication with our clients, and this requires attention to detail and a professional approach.

   For this reason I have difficulty progressing your application beyond your first message because of its frequent and careless lack of capitalisation and its poor grammar.

    I would imagine that you are a very bright individual. Your time at University proves this. However, you should remember that your message is the only evidence I have of you. I am passing you this advice in the hope that it may help you when you apply for jobs elsewhere.

Good luck for the future,

Mr. Almighty

* * *

Dear Mr. Almighty,

I worked very hard to get to my level and my spelling and grammer has nothing to do with how clever i am. My grammer can be improved, you’re bad manners cannot.

Please take me off you’re system. I would not like to work for you any more.

Regards,

Reilly

 

This is based on a true story from a University in the South. Approach companies professionally, whether in person or in writing.

Don’t just tell them you’re interested in their sector.

Tell them why you’re interested in THEM.

And be warm. Representatives are people too, and people remember other people that they like. They also like to help out the people that they like.

Good luck,

Jack

Illness – Employers are Sick of It

Illness isn’t great at the best of times. It’s worse when it strikes you down for 2 of the 5 days you had managed to bag yourself within a lucrative business in a different country. Guernsey to be precise.

But it did get me thinking – where is the line between acceptable illness and unacceptable illness? When will an employer agree that you are genuinely too unwell to work? Do you have to turn up first and see how you go? Fortunately I was staying with one of the employees at this business and it was more than apparent to her just how ill I had become. If not, I would have found myself nervously treading the employability minefield – balancing impressing my employer with dedication and self-sacrifice against the overwhelming urge to display the effects of the stomach upon a £3.29 meal deal across my desk.

The short, sweet and simple answer is ‘it depends’. That doesn’t help very much. Here’s why.

Each employer is different. Each employer will have had their own unique experiences with individuals in these circumstances, and a lot is very much down to luck. One employer may see illness as an excuse to skive; another might be genuinely concerned for your health and advise you to stay at home until you are well. Some employers won’t care. Such is life.

But what can you do to mitigate the effects of ill health at work or on a placement? Here are my 3 top tips:

1. Ensure you are well rested and fed–

Being run down is going to mean you are particularly susceptible to bugs and viruses. By looking after yourself, you can do your very best to avoid coming down with these illnesses in the first place and avoid the problem all together!

 

2. Stock up on Immodium –

Maybe not just Immodium. Diarrhea, sickness, headaches, fevers… The effects can be awful to deal with (especially when you are alone in a new city) and may take a while to disappear on their own. Viruses in particular cannot be treated, but the symptoms can be tackled with many over the counter medicines. Build a travel medicine kit and ensure to have it with you, just in case.

 

3. Battle through –

‘Sniffles’ warn us of the impending doom at the hands of man flu/colds. They are not, however, a good excuse to skip work. If you know you can work, battle through. Negative impressions come through being unproductive and this is why illness becomes such a problem. If you can make it there and get through the first few hours, you will maximise your chances of avoiding a negative impression. If you don’t feel better by around midday, you can always head on back home with your employer’s permission. You will have shown just how dedicated you are, how you understand the importance of turning up and your employer will recognise you are genuinely ill and aren’t using this as an excuse to skip work and explore your new city/play Xbox.

 

It is very difficult to stay away from work and still leave a positive impression. Try your very best to avoid illness in the first place, make sure you’re prepared for the worst and battle through if you can. It’s tough, but it’s doable.

Jack

See you after Summer!

Dear Fans and Fellow Bloggers,

I’m afraid I shall be leaving you for a few months. I’m going to put all my preachings into practice over the Summer and hopefully secure some potential leads for a future career. With any luck, I’ll have some new found pearls of wisdom to share straight from the mouth of graduate employers.

Given that I’m here to write about the things you genuinely want to hear, it makes sense for me to actually ask you what you want to hear about. Feel free to comment on this post or post on the Careers Service Facebook wall (www.facebook.com/hullunicareers) about what you want to hear the graduate recruiters talking about. The Careers Service is here to provide you with a service – this means you need to tell them what you want!

Or tell me. They like me. I can put in a good word.

Good luck with Summer folks!

Jack.

Max Lands! And tells us how easy we have it.

The Careers Service has hosted a German Marketing Intern this week. We’re going to call him Max. He’s quite kindly agreed to do my job for me. And I’m getting paid for it! Enjoy!

Guten Tag everyone,

I am Max from Germany visiting my friend Jack in England.

I really have to admit, British people are weird. Especially British people at universities. Just the thought of someone with a philosophy-degree doing a job as manager… that would never happen where I come from.

In Germany much fewer pupils start a course in university after their A-levels (or Abitur, as we call it). But if you do, you have to decide beforehand, in which field of jobs you want to work as most employers would not even consider employing you if you have not a fitting degree. So I got to say, you English people really have better opportunities after university. You have so many chances!

That also explains to me why you have to have such huge CV’s with a lot more additional activities than we Germans use to have. You guys still have to prove that you are fitting for a job- we already did by studying a matching subject.

Nevertheless the German job-market is lacking of well-qualified employees. This is a result of a massive decrease in the birth-rate in the last 20 years. German parents became lazy one could say. Most companies and employers can’t even fill their apprenticeships, not to talk about post-graduate jobs.

Especially the healthcare-sector is in desperate need of labour-force. Why’s that, you could ask me? Are Germans that sick? In fact we are not- at least not usually. But good old Germany has become exactly that: old! Nearly half of the inhabitants (around 46%) are at age 50 or above. And as you know, with age often come the minor ailments.

Furthermore engineers are really wanted. You sure know BMW, Volkswagen and all the other major automobile-companies. They are the reason why. German industry is a great deal about producing machines, especially cars. At least this is what we are famous for in the world! But we can’t do that without engineers and others specialists.

Speaking of which… why don’t you guys help us out a bit? Some of you need jobs and we need qualified students. And with a more or less fitting degree, your chances are not bad at all, especially since all of you speak English very fluently (at least I hope so), which is one skill most companies are looking for. And in many cases you don’t even have to have German language skills. They would be really helpful though but a lot of Germans speak English anyway.

So maybe, if this could be an idea for you, why not just talk to the friendly advisors of your career service or have a look at the website of the international placement service of Germany (Zentrale Auslands- und Fachvermittlung)?

http://www.arbeitsagentur.de/nn_572444/Navigation/Dienststellen/besondere-Dst/ZAV/arbeiten-in-deutschland/EN/Startseite-EN-Nav.html

So much for today from me. I’d really like to meet you in beautiful Germany.

Auf bald, euer Max

You DO NOT need to know what you want to do. You DO need to start finding out.

Me: “Why haven’t you used the Careers Service?”

Student: “Because I don’t know what I want to do.”

“…”

Me: “So why haven’t you used the Careers Service?”

 

It is incredible how often I get this reply. It makes so little sense when you think about it:

These people are here to help you.

They know which degrees lead to where.

They have loads of free booklets dedicated to each subject area offered at university.

They know what jobs are available.

They know the entry requirements for different jobs.

They can advise you on and help you to improve your CV.

They can help you get a paid internship.

 

Why are you still reading this? Why aren’t you talking to the Careers Service already?

Jack.

Introducing Myself

Hello.

There are two things I need to set out at the beginning.

  1. I am a student.
  2. I am being paid for this.

You wouldn’t believe me if I said otherwise.

HOWEVER!

The reason I have agreed to this is because it is a decent service and they managed to get me a job lined up for the Summer.

And I’m skint.

Each week (or there abouts) I shall be updating this with events you’re going to find very useful in the coming few weeks and a bit of general insider careers information. When I say insider, I mean information I have been given DIRECTLY from employers. I won’t be giving you the stuff you can get off Google by typing in ‘careers information’, or ‘careers inside tips’, or ‘how to get a job’. You’ll be getting what employers want and ways of getting it.

I’ll also be updating with information on my own career path and my own take on the Careers Service. I’ll be frank, honest and slightly biased.

So stay tuned.

Jack

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