Before you start work, it’s important that you gain the qualifications and experience you need to stand out from all the other job applicants. You might have started doing this back in high school. Taking on presidencies of clubs, and making a stand for rights can all add up to a great looking college application. Now you’re in college, it’s important to keep that momentum going.
There are still plenty of ways you can make your application stand out:
Your work portfolio is probably one of the most important assets you have. So what goes into this golden ticket to the job of your dreams? Experience and evidence. Your portfolio should clearly document your work to date. If you’re looking for a career in design, then every sketch and project you’ve ever been involved in should be here. Show the working process, the finished product and the purpose of your work.
A portfolio should speak for itself without lots of extra text or a need for your to verbally present it. Even if you don’t produce tangible goods, you can use the photography to illustrate your experience and abilities. If you’re looking to fast track into management, show your work in customer service, presentations, project management, and HR. Demonstrate with the images how you lead and the depth of the work you’ve completed so far.
Beyond your degree, you should be able to present a wealth of additional practical qualifications. If you want to work with people, then you might undertake customer service training classes or leadership courses. If you’re hoping to move into teaching, then it makes sense to become certified in presentation skills and project management. For creative people, expand your skill set further than your degree allows. Pick up extra photography training, additional art design qualifications, or certification for app building.
The point of gaining extra qualifications is that it proves your knowledge. It will widen your experience in different roles as well as boosting your skill set. All of this combined can make you more useful and more valuable as an asset to the company you want to work for. It means you’re more malleable in any role as you can slip into different departments and develop your role while you’re there. Most importantly, it shows a willingness to learn new things and to continue your education and training.
Your portfolio is an enormous asset, but the experiences you gained in real companies is just as important. If your portfolio includes evidence indicators of profit making in the real world, then you will definitely stand out in the crowd. So how can you achieve this? Problem-solving for a real company is a highly valued skill. It might be your dad’s hardware store or the diner on the corner. Perhaps it’s your cousin’s blog? Apply something you develop to a real business and use your portfolio to illustrate it. Don’t forget to include the company details on your resume so you can list is in your work experience section. Go get that dream job!
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