Congratulations! You’ve made it to the all-important job interview… you’re ahead of 99% of the other job hunters. Now it’s time to seal the deal!

In order to nail your interview, there’s five things you MUST avoid doing and saying, at all costs.

In this economy, it’s hard not to make yourself seem desperate, but don’t. Don’t let your interviewer know that you’re on the brink of financial ruin, about to lose your house, your car, or anything else. Keep your personal business, personal and your professional business, professional.

Secondly, never, ever speak badly about a former employer. If you’re asked why you left your previous company and, deep-down, it’s because your boss was the worst boss ever, make sure you reply in the positive with something like, “I couldn’t see myself being able to grow professionally”, or “I was looking for a more challenging opportunity”. Be truthful, but positive.

Thirdly, after the interview is finished, don’t forget to thank your interviewer for their time AND don’t neglect to send a thank-you note. And, not just a thank-you note: address specifics of your interview- things that set you apart from all of the other candidates. You’ll leave a lasting impression and it may be the last communication you have with your potential employer: make it count!

Don’t go into the company blindly without any knowledge on what they do, their goals as well as some of their accomplishments. Being proactive in this manner shows the interviewer that you not only prepared for your interview, but that you are genuinely interested in becoming a part of their organization.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, rehearse how you are going to answer all of the hard questions like, “what’s your biggest weakness?”, “tell me about yourself”, or “why should I hire you?” Naturally, you don’t want your answers to sound rehearsed, but you do want be prepared. The worst thing you can do is be caught-off guard and then start babbling. That’s a sure sign to the interviewer that you aren’t the right candidate for the job.

Putting your best foot forward in your interview means giving a bit of forethought to the process. By being prepared and proactive, you’ll make a lasting impression which may just cinch it for you!

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DATE / March 26,2012 by Anonymous

One of the deterring factors for hiring an individual for a job is their lack of relevant work experience.

And, unfortunately, for recent college graduates it can be a Catch-22. There are ways, however, to combat this challenge and to land the job of your dreams… or at least just land a job!

I know that it’s been said time and time again, but it’s true- volunteer! Naturally, you can’t volunteer 40 hours per week because you do have spend time looking for a job. However, put your spare hours to good use by volunteering for a job within your industry. You don’t have to volunteer for the exact job you’re hoping to land, but if you volunteer within your chosen field (and, if possible, with a bigger company), you can lend instant credibility to yourself! VolunteerMatch is an excellent site to find relevant companies who are looking for qualified matches.

While the prospect of going back to school to obtain an advanced degree may seem depressing and daunting, particularly if you just received an undergraduate degree, it may be worthwhile. Some companies may accept an advanced degree in lieu of real world work experience. Not to mention, with an advanced degree typically comes more pay. And that’s never a bad thing.

Another valuable thing to do for career experience that can help pay the bills while building your resume is to accept an internship. It’s true that some internships aren’t compensated, however others are. Find a company within your industry and inquire about internship opportunities.

Lastly, one of the most valuable things you can do when you lack relevant work experience is to join associations that are affiliated with your desired career field. Not only will these associations provide job leads, but they can also give you the opportunity to network with key decision makers within our industry. And, if LinkedIn has shown us anything, it’s the power of industry connections!

Don’t get disheartened when pursuing the job of your dreams. While it’s true that unemployment is at an all-time high, it is possible to set your sights on your dream job and LAND IT! All it takes is a little determination… and ingenuity.

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DATE / March 24,2012 by Anonymous

If you have kids, a husband, a brother or any male in your life, you’ve probably heard of the “five second rule”.

Well, there’s a new rule on the block- the Six Second Rule- and it doesn’t have anything to do with food and the floor. Instead, it has everything to do with landing your dream job.

According to the leading $100K+ job hunting site, TheLadders, you have exactly six seconds to grab the attention of a recruiter, via your resume, before they move on to the next candidate.

Using innovative technology called “eye tracking”, TheLadders analyzed data from head hunters reviewing resumes. While these head hunters reported taking four to five minutes reviewing each resume, TheLadders research indicated something drastically different- a mere 6 seconds was spent reviewing each applicants’ resume.

So, you have a whole six seconds… what do you do with them and what should your resume focus on to make the most of those precious seconds?

It should go without saying that a professional resume, much like those created on Resume Improved, are much easier to read and, therefore, much easier for recruiters to find the information they are looking for. Go professional or go home.

While inserting important keywords into your resume is helpful in terms of matching up skillset with the current job, the most important things to focus on are your current title and company including job starting and ending dates, your previous title and company including job starting and ending dates, and your education. Make sure these items are brief, but packed full of information that is relevant to the position you are applying.

In addition to succinct content, a visually clean resume or online profile is crucial. There shouldn’t be any distracting elements, including personal photos. While a personal photo does draw attention to the photo, recruiters utilize a few of those precious six seconds to do so, adding no real value to whether or not you are actually qualified for the position.

While I’m not sure that I completely agree with the entire “Six Second Rule”, I know one thing’s for certain: you have very little time to make a great first impression with your resume and to separate yourself from the scores of other job applicants: make wise use of that time with succinctness and sell them FAST on YOU!

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DATE / March 19,2012 by Anonymous

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Your resume is the first stepping stone in landing that all important job. In these hard economic times it’s more important than ever that your resume is correctly laid out, error free and that it stands out from the crowd. With resume improved you can make sure this all important document is perfect. From creating a resume from scratch, to printing, emailing, faxing and downloading. You can do it all online in a few simple clicks. No more tedious word processors, fax machines and lost documents. If you need to get hired quickly, then you need Resume Improved.

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