How to sell yourself with no experience
The hardest part of any job search is selling yourself. Even when you have years of experience in an industry this can be a challenge. How do you package your skills when you do not have experience?
1) Use the job description terminology. Spend time really reviewing the opportunity. Hone in on the keywords within a job description. A human resources department is specifically looking for those keywords in your cover letter and on your resume.
2) Create experience. I don’t mean lie. Never lie. However, do look at your existing experiences and reorganize them to line up on your resume with the requirements for the job. For example, if you are a recent graduate, look to projects you did in school that qualifies you for some of the areas on the job description.
3) Research the Company. Learn as much about the position and the company as you can. Go online. Stop by the company and take a look around. Know something about the leadership. Think about what you have in common with the company and why you would be a good fit for them.
4) Research Yourself-Dive Deep on Google. Google yourself and be sure your digital image is clean. The last thing you need is for a prospective employer to find that picture from last Halloween of you doing a keg stand.
5) Build your Profile on LinkedIn. This is the perfect platform to showcase your skills and build a positive professional online image.
6) Be Available and Flexible. Making demands on a prospective employer when you have no experience will not get you far. Be available-work nights, weekends, whatever it takes to get that job. First you get hired and get experience. Eventually, you have the talent and experience to make demands.
7) Think about References. Spend time thinking about whom you list as references. Find references that can speak to your ability to do the job. Prep your references. Make sure they know about the job you are seeking and can speak about you in the job you seek.
8) Listen. Be open-minded. Because you are just getting started and don’t have as much experience, listening is imperative. Through listening you will be able to discern what it is the prospective employer needs and see how/if your existing skillset is a fit for the organization.
9) Be positive, confident and energetic. Enthusiasm counts for a lot. Having a positive attitude and confidence in your abilities shows your prospective employer you are eager to learn and do things right.
10) Don’t Burn Bridges. Never speak negatively about previous employers or people in the industry. It is amazing how small the world is and how connected people are. As you move through your career, previous employers or people will come and go from your life. You want them to remember the great work you do.
Everyone has to start somewhere. Staying positive, polished and packaging the skills you do have will help you create the best version of you.