April 2009: Job Hunting
Get a Job!
Now’s the time to get started finding that summer job–or lay the groundwork for your own business. The job market is tight this year. But with hard work and these handy tips from Biz Kid$, you’ll be on your way to the job of your dreams, or at least one that will keep your bank account in the black.
Win an iPod Shuffle in the Biz Kid$ $uper $aver $weepstakes
April is Financial Literacy Month. Are you saving for something special? Write us with your savings goal, your plan for achieving it, and how much you’ve saved so far. One winner will be drawn at random from all the entries to win a free iPod Shuffle. Submit your entry by May 7th, 2009 to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail to: Biz Kid$, 4742 42nd Ave. SW #234, Seattle, WA 98116.
Have a vision–and an open mind
One of the secrets of top athletes is their ability to visualize what they’re going to do before they do it. By visualizing your future job, you’ll be able to recognize when opportunity knocks. Imagine that you’re working at the job of your dreams…
- Where are you? In an office? A library? A park? The zoo?
- Do you work all day, part of the day–or are you on the night shift?
- Are you working up a sweat–or giving your brain a workout?
- Are you part of a team or do you work solo?
- What are you getting out of the job? Connections? Knowledge? Or just a little extra cash?
Even when you have your ideal job visualized, it’s important to keep an open mind. No job is perfect–and sometimes any job is better than no job.
When you’re applying for a job, your product is you! So get to know yourself.
- What are you good at? What are you not so good at?
- What experience do you have–at work, at school, and just in life?
- What are your goals?
Resumes and cover letters
Depending on what kind of job you’re applying for, you might need a resume. A resume describes your experience; a cover letter explains why you’re right for a particular job.
- Tailor your resume: If you’re applying for a landscaping job, you probably shouldn’t put your computer skills first.
- Your boss’s shoes: Look at every item from the perspective of your future employer. Everything should tell why you’re right for the job.
- Dig deep: Any situation where you had responsibility or achieved something notable could be interesting to an employer–especially relevant volunteer experience.
- Be yourself: You’re not expected to have a long career history. Just put your best foot forward!
Click here for a great article on how to write your first resume.
Don’t be shy
Searching the want ads can help you get a job, but more people get their jobs through their personal contacts. Tell everyone you know–family, friends, teachers, classmates, anyone–that you’re looking for work and what kind of work you want. Chances are, you’ll find some great leads that way. And a personal introduction is much more powerful than any resume or cover letter.
Working for free can give the best payoff
If you don’t have any experience, you’re not likely to land a job as a video game designer or an architect. But lots of businesses and other organizations offer internships and volunteer opportunities where, instead of money, you get real-world experience in a field of interest to you. You might not get paid much (or at all) but you might get a leg up on the career of your dreams.
Click here for a fantastic article on internships with links to online resources.