People have had a hard time getting their first job for a long time because of the "experience conundrum." If you have no work experience, employers aren't going to hire you. You can't get work experience if you don't get a job.
But things are going to change. The current labor shortages are having an effect on almost every industry. Help wanted signs are popping up all over the place, wages are going up, and hiring managers are desperate to find good people. Getting your first job now is better than ever.
A strong economic recovery and a record number of Baby Boomers retiring have led to more people over the age of 16 not working. Youth have a real chance to not just get a job, but one that can give them experience in a field that they're interested or passionate about. This has made it easier for them to do this.
So, the bottom line is that more people are needed now than ever, and you can get a good job as an entry-level worker in things like retail, fashion or healthcare. You don't have to work in fast food or delivery services to start out in the workforce.
In spite of the fact that there isn't a lot of work out there, as a first-time job seeker, you still need to show employers that you're worth hiring over other workers, even if you have some experience already. You can get a job if you can show that you have good things about yourself.
If you know someone who can help you get a job at the company, take advantage of that. This is a common way to get your first job. It's used more than you might think. Is that the case? If not, you'll need to come up with a plan. Until recently, most companies only let people apply for jobs online for efficiency's sake. Job seekers, especially first-time job seekers, found this hard to deal with. Now that they're looking for good workers, they might be more willing to meet with you in person to see if you can help.
First, make a list.
Write down the kinds of businesses or industries you'd like to work for, but know that you'll have to start at the bottom. It's important to find a job where you can meet and network with more experienced employees who can help you learn more about their business and make the work experience more rewarding. This is your main goal.
Write a letter to the owner or manager of the business.
Explain who you are. Also tell them how much work you can do for them, and why you want to work for them, Make a strong case for yourself. Then, if they hire you, say that you will be on time, be mentally present, and work hard. Be short and to the point; don't write more than one page. Because even if you haven't worked in a job before, you have other experiences that can be used as proxies for that. Describe a situation where you had to be on time and work hard, like when you were a volunteer or did something extra.
Send your letter by hand.
Dress for success and try to make a good impression when you go out. Make sure you get their name so that you can follow up later if they don't answer. Let them know that you're interested in their business and that you appreciate their consideration when they're looking for someone to start at their company as a new worker.
4. If you get an interview, make sure you do your best to be ready for it.
Check to see what questions you might be asked and write down your answers before you go on the trip. Practice saying them out loud until you can say them with ease and confidence. Tell them why you want to work with them and why you like their business. Have a strong answer to the question of what you want to do for the group. "I'm ready to work and learn."
If you don't get the job, don't give up. This is the most important thing to learn. Ask the hiring manager if there are things you can work on for the next time. When you're young and not very smart, you can still make yourself stand out by doing simple things that will show off your initiative. Those who hire well want to see this kind of thing.
"Give first, and then get." Make yourself useful, and people will notice and help you learn. Work to get over your first fears and, as you get more comfortable, think about how you can help. Take a look around and ask questions that will help you do your job better, then. You'll start to be praised in return.
Remember that everyone starts somewhere.
At Ujuzingo we help accounting and finance job seekers put their best foot forward as they search for opportunities that meet their skills and career aspirations, while also assisting employers in finding more job-ready applicants. Check out our accounting and finance courses or current job openings.
Contributed by: Henry Mubiru Kweba.
Views expressed by our contributors are their own.