My entire senior year of high school, I had been insistent that I would get a job during the summer before college so I’d have a good cushion of money to start off the school year. As senior year started to reach a close, I thought about some jobs that I might want to apply for and researched them a bit. I actually found one that I was extremely excited to apply for.
It was in that moment that I realized that I didn’t know much about how to get a job. I didn’t have a resume even though I had worked previously. My friend had helped me get my prior job at her workplace so I simply interviewed with a manager and filled out an application after as a formality.
In reality, most times nailing down a job takes more effort than that (I know, a shocker), and so I had some work to do before I was able to fill out an application for this summer job. It all started with figuring out how the heck to make a resume for myself. I mean, how do you make a resume when you’ve only had one job before and it was only for a few months total? As other articles I’ve written have covered, there’s more to a resume than just job experience. I did plenty of research on how to create the best resume possible for a student because of how little experience I had.
Once I compiled my research and help from family and friends, my resume was good enough to submit as part of an application, which was my next step. Every application is going to vary but this one was online and so I did my best to fill it out in a way that would make me look my best and then hit submit. The first few weeks of waiting to hear back, I justified that it takes time to review the applications and they’ll get back to me in a timely manner. But then the waiting continued. I started to worry and tried to follow up with an email to make sure the application was received, but no email was available to contact the company. I thought about walking in to the nearest store and asking for a manger to see if I could apply in person to show true interest but in the end, I decided to let the job go because I had already started working for Robin at Skip the Box at this point and I decided that was enough for me for the summer.
You’re probably confused why I would share a failure story with you. To be quite honest, I don’t feel qualified to advise anyone on how to get a job in the traditional sense. Though, maybe, that’s the takeaway. The traditional way may be helpful to some people but it’s also entirely possible to snag a job without following the traditional route.
I’m not discouraging you from going into some of your frequently visited places and asking if they have any positions available. Go for it! You might find something. In addition, I’d encourage you to also ask around and see if any friends know of places that are hiring — because there’s a higher likelihood of you getting a job if there’s a personal connection (yes, networking can work). Maybe you’ll even find an opportunity that is a bit outside the ordinary, like this job at Skip the Box/robinmassey.com, for example.
Summer is coming soon and the jobs are going to fill fast, but with a bit of preparation and some outside of the box thinking, you’ll be in a good position to snag the job that you want.
Need help creating your resume? Check out You Need a Resume.