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Tips for Finding a Job

June 27, 2011
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If you find yourself discouraged about a lack of job opportunities or a lack of positive response from prospective employers, give these tips some consideration. One or more of them might be essential in helping you to land the job of your dreams.

  1. Your resume is your personal marketing document, so be sure to make it shine. Customize it to suit the job you’re applying for. Make it easy for employers to find the info on your resume that shows them you’re ideal for the job. List your strongest achievements right at the top of your resume. Be sure to customize your cover letter to reflect how well you meet their requirements.

  2. Look at paper and online job boards and take note of companies that you might not have known about. Also take note of recruiting companies that are hiring speech-language pathologists. Get in touch with a recruiter or two or three, and let the recruiter help find you a job – it doesn’t cost you a cent. Expand your list of potential employers rather than limiting it to just the big, well-known clinics. Take note of companies that have booths at trade shows. These companies might want to hire you too.
  3. Research any company that interests you. Look in libraries and online. If the company holds open houses or tours, sign up for one. You can even request an information interview from companies, even if they aren’t currently hiring. Ask for 15 minutes and take no more than that. Have your questions ready and if they happen to ask you for a resume (for their files), send them one the next day after you’ve had time to tweak it to that company’s needs.
  4. Be aware that employers now search online for any info they can get on applicants. Google yourself and see what comes up. Be very careful about what you post online as it can ruin your chances of employment. Remove any online content that you wouldn’t want your grandmother or your boss to know.
  5. Be the professional that an employer would want representing his or her company. Dress professionally and communicate articulately. Listen and process what other people say before responding. Good manners, ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ go a long way in keeping opportunities alive.
  6. Remember that it’s not about you. It’s about how you meet your employer’s needs. On your customized resume, and in interviews, be able to express how your skills meet the employer’s needs, and how you bring value to the company.
  7. Sincere interest is important. So, even if you’re looking at several job opportunities concurrently, be sure that during interviews you demonstrate strong interest in that job. Don’t ask about compensation and benefits in the early stages of the hiring process. Let the employer bring that up later.
  8. Take advantage of job fairs at professional conferences. Also, make use of business and social contacts, and social networking sites such as LinkedIn. You can add your LinkedIn hyperlink to your email signature block. Most jobs don’t get advertised but are filled by word-of-mouth referrals and in-house promotions. Use social networks to get your name and availability out there.
  9. Ask for the job. Yes, it is assumed that you want the job or you wouldn’t be interviewing for it, but as the interview winds down, recap your suitability for the job and then say that you’d really like the job (if you do), and express your hope that they will offer it to you. Shake hands, say thanks to the interviewers for taking the time to meet with you, and then send a thank you note the next day to all the people who interviewed you. Always leave a great lasting impression.

View our job listings at /speech-pathology-jobs/.