Tag Archives: job hunting advice

Dress appropriately when job hunting

What you wear matters when applying for a job but all this person was hoping for was a large desk to mask what she was wearing. Yes, you heard me right, a large desk between her and the receptionist.

Here’s a story about a woman who wanted a last-minute review of her resume and cover letter. She had found a job posting that appeared to meet her needs and offered a good compensation package. After reviewing her papers and suggesting some minor changes I wished her good luck and gave a friendly reminder to put on work appropriate clothes before dropping off her resume. I noticed she was dressed casually with her blouse, boots, jacket and a pair of dark jeans so I said, “You can never underestimate the power of the front desk staff as they often take notes on how you present yourself.” Initially, I felt certain she didn’t intend to drop off the resume without changing first, but I was wrong.

She said, “Oh, I’m just wearing this because I’m driving my scooter there but they will probably have one of those big desks so they won’t see my jeans anyway. Hopefully they will just look from the waist up.” The woman thanked me for helping with the editing  and off she went out the door with helmet and paperwork at her side. I learned later that she has been looking for employment for a long time and this is likely one of the reasons why. She may have the education and even meet most of the qualifications for the position but her personal presentation is completely inappropriate for the jobs she is seeking.

When job hunting you can’t cut corners and expect to stand out in the crowd. From application to presentation everything has to say, I’m thorough, I care and I’m the one for you. This woman was applying for a community based position and at the very least should have been wearing a proper blouse, blazer and if she wanted to wear pants there are plenty of business styles that would have looked far better.

Hoping for a big desk…what’s up with that?

Frustrated Business Woman

Target in Canada – Want to be a Team Member?

Are you wanting to work at Target? The US – based company Target has announced their goal to open 20 more stores in Canada, with plans for a total of 124 locations. Wow! What an expansion! For those like me who have shopped south of the border at Target this means a little less driving but it also means jobs for many people across this great country. Besides Team Leaders and Team Members there are Administrative and Stock Replenishment positions (among others) that will need to be filled. So, if working for Target is your goal then it’s time to get informed. Here’s my advice:

Targetstore

1. If a location is already near you then walk in and become familiar with the store. Pay attention to their merchandise selection, notice their personnel and think about what you enjoy as you peruse the aisles.

2. Go online and discover who they are. Most companies offer an “About Us” or “Our Company” page…research is the key. Company’s have unique history to be mined. If you are going to be sitting down with these people and discussing a potential work partnership, don’t you want to get to know them a bit better?

3. What’s their language and culture? When you read about or walk through a company you can get a pretty good idea about the kind of work environment they aim to provide for staff. Target spells it out for you in the first paragraph under “Our Culture” with words like friendly, fun and collaborative. If you are planning to be a part of their team you might want to ask yourself “Is that what I can bring to Target?” If so, then let them know.

4. Understand their application process. If you are applying online or in person to any company know what is expected of you. As I have said  before, there are ways to get online applications, resumes and cover letters noticed. If you don’t know how to do one or more of those things than get some help. With people out there like me to call on or others you may know who have had success with their self marketing, why go it alone?

5. Follow-up and don’t give up. If you really want to work for Target then keep on letting them know you are out there. Check out a company’s hiring process. If follow-up can be done or another application forwarded within weeks or months then put it on your To-Do list.

6. Get to know staff. Over 32% of job leads come from asking family, friends or professionals you already know. Don’t be afraid to strike up conversation with Target staff about your interest in becoming part of the team. You have nothing to lose.

7. When you do get that interview…come prepared! Brush up on your interview skills and I suggest you do so before you even get such a call. You don’t want to be cramming for an interview the same way you crammed for a test. When I work with my clients or workshop participants on interview skills I can see their confidence grow. It’s impressive to everyone involved in an interview when you not only can speak to your accomplishments but also theirs.

Bottom line: You want to be on target with Target!