Teamwork. Dependability. Work ethic. The ability to stay off social media during work hours. We can all agree that these are important qualities to have when seeking employment after college graduation. However, what if I told you these were not as important as you might think to get you hired?
There is one word that employers around the world are looking for when searching for potential candidates to add to their teams. This word shows employers that the candidate is going to show up, know what she’s doing, and not make her boss look like an idiot. This word is… experience.
Unfortunately, too many college students graduate without an ounce of real-world experience in their fields, which makes their hopes of post-graduation employment far-fetched. The best way to gain experience during your college years is through internships.
Although the majority of college students take an “L” in the internship category, landing one may actually be easier than you think. Ask yourself these five questions to determine if you have what it takes to get some relevant experience under your belt.
1. Is your GPA on point?
Yes, we all know that a GPA is not the “end all be all” for your success in life. But it does show whether or not you are on your grind. Imagine you are the CEO of a company and all you know about your two potential hires are their current GPAs. One has a 4.0 and one has a 2.0. Which one would you hire? ‘Nuff said.
2. Do you have a life?
Your involvement around your campus and community is just as important as your performance in the classroom. It speaks volumes to companies about your commitment, leadership, interpersonal skills, and willingness to make it to happy hour every Wednesday. So, don’t just sit in your dorm room and be basic. Get out and get involved!
3. Is your resume a joke?
There are hundreds of resume faux pas that will get your compilation of credentials and accomplishments laughed at, balled up, and alley-ooped into the office trash can. Have multiple sets of eyes review your resume before even thinking of submitting it to any company. Formatting issues, irrelevant information, and typos all communicate to employers that you are unprofessional. Don’t be a top student with a wack resume... (sips tea).
4. Can you hold your own?
Can you handle an interview? Can you convince complete strangers that they’d be crazy to not hire you? Succeeding in interviews takes preparation, knowledge, and of course a little sucking up. Interviews can be extremely intimidating, but if you can speak confidently about yourself, the field, and the company, then its a sinch! Prepare, be positive, and if worse comes to worse… fake it ‘till you make it?
5. Do you know people that know people?
Company representatives will ask professors, administrators, and even previous interns for their suggestions on which students on campus would make a good fit for their companies. The stronger your relationships on campus, the more opportunities you will have. #SquadGoals
These are areas in which all college students, whether strong in them or not, can improve. Continuous progression in these areas can lead to multiple internships while in college, and multiple job offers upon graduation. For more information on how to enhance these 5 skills, visit www.acingtheundergrad.com. Also, hit up Acing The Undergrad: The Show on YouTube.