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Five Simple Steps to Employment Mark Whitrod, Smart Start Job Developer/Lead, Job Skills

About the Author

Mark Whitrod has worked in employment services for over five years and has also owned several businesses. He has a passion for helping people and enjoys writing and facilitating employment-related workshops. Mark is currently working for Job Skills, running the Smart Start program which is targeted towards the retail and hospitality industries and provides clients with the tools to successfully find long-term positions in those industries.

Follow these five simple (but not always easy) steps and dramatically increase your chances of finding work:

Step 1: The Right Attitude

Before starting on the process of getting a job, it is important that you are:

  1. Confident in your ability to get a job

  2. Prepared to ''do what it takes'' to get a job

  3. Honest and truthful with yourself

  4. Flexible in your approach and thinking

  5. Able to take advice and act upon it

Once you are in the right frame of mind, move onto Step 2.

Step 2: Take Some Self-Assessment/Career Planning Evaluations

By taking the time to evaluate your skills, traits, values, experience and interests, you will have the necessary information to make a more informed choice on your next career move. In addition, self-assessment helps you market yourself during the interview process. How can you answer that all important question, ''Why should we hire you?'' if you don't know who you are and what value you bring to the workplace.

Step 3: Develop an Outstanding Resume and Cover Letter

There are three types of resume: The chronological, the functional and the combination. It is important to choose the type that best suits your work history and how it relates to an employer's expectations.

Taking the time to develop a proper resume - one that clearly demonstrates your skills and experience and how they match the requirements of a prospective employer - will pay-off and increase your chances of an interview.

In the majority of cases, a cover letter should be submitted with your resume. A cover letter is a very valuable document and a wonderful marketing tool. It reiterates your qualifications and clearly demonstrates how well suited you are to fill the position that is being offered. Keep in mind that what you are actually doing is marketing yourself.

Step 4: Tap into the Hidden Job Market Using Networking

Networking is something you do naturally anyway - speaking to someone you know to get the name of someone else. Networking for your job search is the systematic gathering of names and contacts to help you find job leads or labour market information. Other people can ''look out for you'' - be your eyes and ears in places where you cannot be.

A 'Direct Approach' is making contact with a company directly, without networking, by making a telephone call, sending an email or visiting in person.

Step 5: Ace the Interview

Prepare, prepare, prepare! Research the company, dress for success, remain calm and remember the reason you have an interview is that the employer liked what he saw in your resume, so back this up at the interview and above all, don't stress it.

To get help with all the above steps and more, if you are in Ontario, visit your local Employment Ontario Employment Services site - they provide a multitude of employment services including workshops, highly-skilled employment specialists and fully equipped resource centres. Similar services are available in the other provinces as well, including British Columbia and Nova Scotia. Drop by and start with step one on your road to employment.

The opinions and positions expressed in the above article represent the views of the author and are provided with no legal obligation and liability on the part of either the author or the publisher of this article, and with no implied or stated guarantees. The publisher of this article and the author are exempt from any liability for events resulting directly or indirectly from the use of this article. Copyrights over the article published on this page are owned in full by the article's author. It is prohibited to reproduce this article in parts or in full without the expressed permission of the author.