Posted By Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio
OK, so it’s March, and you still don’t have a summer internship or a full-time position. Take a deep breath, and summon all of the strength your generation is known for. You are a part of the Millennial Generation, aka Generation Y, and your strengths are: (1) confidence, (2) strong interpersonal skills, (3) very team-oriented, and (4) you are focused on achievement! Now use these characteristics to dig your heels in and find that job! Here is how you can do it:
Confidence: Know, deep down inside your soul, that you will find something and that it’s just a matter of time. That confidence will actually help you interact with those on campus that can help you and they include: Career services, professors, teaching assistants, fellow students, school administrators, cafeteria workers (you don’t know who people know!). Talk to everyone in a confident, can-do attitude and they will be more willing to share their experiences and their contacts. If you come in with a defeatist attitude people will run from you!
Strong interpersonal skills: Get to know everyone and anyone, in all of your classes (major and minor concentrations). Even those electives … talk to everyone. While a student at NYU, my major was English Literature and my minor was Journalism but I always wanted to have some shred of musical ability … so I took an elective class in guitar. I met people there I would never have met in my normal course of study and they were a great group! Explore all types … the more diverse backgrounds, the better.
Team-oriented: If you belong to the tennis team, the fencing team, the chess team … whatever it is, find out what people are doing this summer or for a full-time opportunity. Ask questions and learn from how they went about job-hunting. Can they share a good contact at career services? Did a professor help them a great deal? There is no “I” in team so ask about THEM! Also, how about creating a team of individuals that are still looking for a job, and meeting with them once a week to brainstorm!
Achievement-focused: Re-energize your job search by setting goals and hitting each one of them. Goal #1: make an appointment with someone new at career services this week.
Goal #2: speak to a new classmate every day & find out more about them.
Goal #3: join a new club on campus and meet a whole slew of new people.
Goal #4: speak to the person at the muffin shop, or copy place … find out more about them.
Once you start to add people to your network, it will only help.
These are not times for the faint of heart, but with that said, there is no need to give up your search. There are opportunities out there and I have every confidence that you will find them and succeed!
Millennial Strengths Off-Campus / Lead with Technology!
Posted By Caroline Ceniza-Levine
An additional key millennial strength that is crucial to an off-campus search and to this economy in particular is facility with technology. Internet research, online social networking, and digital branding are all tools that the proactive jobseeker should be using.
Internet research is at minimum running searches on target industries and companies and visiting related websites. A proactive search also includes setting Google Alerts on your targets so that you receive information on a regular basis and can use these insights for your networking approach, follow-ups and interviews. A thorough search supplements information from a company’s website with aggregated information from other sources. Vault.com is one source for information on various companies and industries. For financials of public companies, check out Hoovers.com. For non-profits, check out Guidestar.org and look at the IRS forms that non-profits are required to file.
Online social networks including LinkedIn, Facebook, MySpace and others are useful for research, networking and branding. For example, on LinkedIn, a search of a specific company turns up profiles of people who work there. What did these people do before – where did they work, what did they study? How do they describe what they do now? This gives you insightful research into what profiles comprise this company. For networking, you can reach out to people in these online communities. You can often join groups that are active in your target industry or function. For branding, don’t forget to manage your own profile. This is part of your marketing package, as much as your resume, cover letter, networking pitch, etc. If you are looking at other people on social networks, other people are looking at you. As a recruiter, I used LinkedIn exhaustively for my searches.
Digital branding is not just your online profile in social networks, though this is an important part of that. Your digital brand includes any blogging that you do, including comments left at other people’s blogs or reviews that you write (e.g. for Amazon). You might have a website – if you are a designer or other creative, you need a website. Recruiters, prospective employers and people that you tap for networking will do a search on your name. Make sure that you are not just okay with what they might find, but that you actively manage what they might find to engage them and make them want to see you.