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Job Search Aids

National Resources

Regional Internet Resources

Job Tips

Here are a few suggestions to consider when you're planning a job search.

Résumés

  • Consider using a summary paragraph at the top of your résumé to highlight your strong points.
  • Be concise.
  • Try to quantify your achievements with numbers (e.g., Reduced operating budget by 35 percent. Fundraising efforts generated $10 thousand dollars).
  • Use active verbs (e.g. developed, built, reduced, increased, created). Avoid the phrase "Responsible for...". It's too passive.
  • Always have friends, colleagues or mentors review your résumé to give you feedback on content and check for typographical errors.
  • Here's a free résumé builder: http://www.gotresumebuilder.com/

Cover Letters

  • Try to address the letter to a specific person, rather than a job title such as "personnel director" or "sir or madam".
  • State the title of the position for which you are applying.
  • Explain why you feel you are qualified for the position by responding directly to the requirements listed in the employment ad. Try to use some of the same words the employer used to describe the qualifications.
  • Consider explaining why you are looking for a new job, but make sure you do it in a positive way.
  • Enthusiastically ask for an interview and include a phone number where you can be reached.

Interviews

  • Be early or on time.
  • Use good eye contact and smile.
  • Relax. You are evaluating a potential employer just as they are evaluating a potential employee. And remember every interview gives you more practice, even if you don't get the job.
  • Answer questions in a direct, concise way. Avoid going on for too long about a subject.
  • It's OK to pause before you answer a question to think about how you want to respond.
  • Always be prepared to answer the classic interview questions:
    1. "What are your strengths and weaknesses?"
    2. "Why are you looking for a new job?"
    3. "Why are you interested in working here?"
    4. "What is you favorite task? What is your least favorite task?"
  • Research the organization before your interview so you have some knowledge about its operations.
  • Prepare some questions that you would like to ask the interviewer. (what is the corporate culture like, what are the goals for the organization over the next year, who would you be working with...)
  • Always conclude the interview by expressing your interest in the position. You can also ask when they plan to make a decision.

Follow-up

  • Send a short note after the interview to thank them for their time, affirm your interest in the position, and restate why you are qualified.

Sources for Opportunities

  • Networking at NELA events
  • Newspapers
  • Professional Organizations
  • Trade Magazines
  • Internet
  • Word of Mouth

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