Top 5 Interview Mistakes Millennials Make

Jenna Goudreau

In today’s job market, older workers have a definitive edge over younger workers. According to a new survey by recruiting firm Adecco, hiring managers are three times more likely to hire a worker that is 50-years-old or older than hire a millennial.
The survey of 501 hiring managers was conducted in late August and defined millennial workers as those born between 1981 and 2000, meaning workers age 31 and under. The recruiters seemed most concerned with millennials’ long-term commitment, professionalism and reliability. They also said millennial workers need major improvement in their interview skills.
Here are the top five interview mistakes millennials make, based on the survey results—and how you can avoid them.

No. 1: Wear Inappropriate Interview Attire

The top interview mistake millennials make is wearing the wrong clothing, according to 75% of hiring managers surveyed. When Angela Romano Kuo was vice president of human resources at  professional job-matching company TheLadders, she recalls being appalled that a young man came to an interview wearing a golf shirt, shorts and flip flops. He did not get the job. “Err on the side of being overdressed to make a good impression,” she advises. In an interview, stay away from flashy jewelry, plunging necklines, too-short hemlines, t-shirts, and shoes that are too casual or too difficult to walk in. “You never want to wear something that can be distracting, so if you have to think twice about it—skip it.”

No. 2: Have Posted Questionable Social Media Content

An overwhelming majority (70%) of hiring managers said millennials make the mistake of posting potentially compromising content on social media channels like Facebook and Twitter. Conversely, managers reported that only 19% of older workers post improper content. According to a recent survey by Intel, top social media faux pas include posting inappropriate or explicit photos, sharing too-personal information about yourself or others, using profanity, and writing with poor grammar and spelling. Young people should be especially careful of their grammar, considering that 46% of hiring managers believe millennials need to improve their writing skills.

No. 3: Haven’t Done Their Research
Hiring managers are generally skeptical of millennials’ research skills, and 62% said it hurts them in an interview when they have not done enough research or preparation on the company and position. While young professionals are most associated with being creative (74%) and strong networkers (73%), they are not believed to be organized (8%) or detail-oriented (17%). The easiest way to flip this assumption on its head is for millennials to be as prepared as possible for the interview. Do internet research on the company, position and interviewer; read as many recent articles as you can find about the industry; and use your LinkedIn connections to talk directly to someone already working there about the culture and environment.

Tips 4, 5, and complete Forbes article

Stand Out in Your Interview

by Amy Gallo – Harvard Business Review

You’ve just landed a job interview for a position you really want. Congratulations. Now, you know you only get one chance to impress, but how exactly do you do that? Given all of the conflicting advice out there and the changing rules of getting a job, it’s no wonder that job seekers are confused about how to best prepare for and perform in an interview.

What the Experts Say
One common piece of advice is to “take charge” of the interview. John Lees, a career strategist and author of The Interview Expert: How to Get the Job You Want and Job Interviews: Top Answers to Tough Questions, says this advice is misleading: “The reality is that the interviewer is in control. Your job is to be as helpful as you can.” Claudio Fernández-Aráoz, a senior adviser at Egon Zehnder International and the author of Great People Decisions, agrees: “You need to help interviewers do the right thing since most of them don’t follow best practices.” According to Fernández-Aráoz, who has interviewed more than 20,000 candidates in his 26 years as a search consultant, most interviewers fall prey to unconscious biases and focus too heavily on experience rather than competence. It’s your responsibility to make sure this doesn’t happen. Here’s how.

Prepare, prepare, prepare
Most people know they need to show up to the interview having done their homework, but both Fernández-Aráoz and Lees agree that people rarely prepare enough. “You can never invest enough in terms of preparation. You should find out as much as possible about the company, how it’s organized, its culture, the relevant industry trends, and some information about the interviewer,” says Fernández-Aráoz. He also advises researching the specific job challenges. This will allow you to demonstrate you have what it takes to fill the role.

Formulate a strategy
Before you enter the room, decide what three or four messages you want to convey to the interviewer. These should “show the connection between what you have achieved and what is really needed to succeed in the specific job and context,” says Fernández-Aráoz. Lees says the best way to do this is to draft narratives ahead of time. “People buy into stories far more than they do evidence or data,” he says. Your stories should be concise and interesting. Make sure they have a good opening line, such as, “I’m going to tell you about a time that I rescued the organization.” Then, learn them like the back of your hand. Know how they begin and end so you can relay them without stumbling or sounding like a robot. Whenever possible, use one of your stories to answer an interview question.

Emphasize your potential
“No candidate will ever be perfect, and you will be no exception,” says Fernández-Aráoz. Instead of harping on where your resume might fall short — or letting the interviewer do the same — focus on your potential. This is often a far better indicator of future job performance. “If your past achievements are not directly related to the job, but you’ve demonstrated a great ability to learn and adapt to new situations, you should very clearly articulate that,” says Fernández-Aráoz. For example, if you’re interviewing for an international role but have no global experience, you might explain how your ability to influence others in a cross-functional role, such as between production and sales, proves your ability to collaborate with different types of people from different cultures.

Ace the first 30 seconds
First impressions matter. Lees points to psychological research that shows that people form opinions about your personality and intelligence in the first 30 seconds of the interview. “How you speak, how you enter the room, and how comfortable you look are really important,” he says. People who perform best in interviews start off by speaking clearly but slowly, walk with confidence, and think through what “props” they will carry so they don’t appear over-cluttered. Lees suggests rehearsing your entrance several times. You can even record yourself on video and play it back without the sound so you can see precisely how you are presenting yourself and make adjustments. The same applies to phone interviews. You need to use the first 30 seconds of the conversation to establish yourself as a confident, calm voice on the line.

Don’t be yourself
Lees calls the “be yourself” advice “demonstrably untrue.” He says, “It’s a trained improvised performance where you’re trying to present the best version of you.” Bring as much energy and enthusiasm to the interview as you can. But don’t oversell yourself. Because there’s an oversupply in the talent market, employers are wary that people are exaggerating their experience and skills. “If you’re going to make a statement about what you can achieve, you need to back it up with hard evidence,” Lees says.

Be ready for the tough questions
Many people worry about how to answer questions about a pause in their work history, a short stay at a recent job, or other blemishes on their CV. Again, the best approach is to prepare in advance. Don’t just have one answer for these difficult questions. Lee suggests three lines of defense. First, have a simple, straightforward answer that doesn’t go into too much detail. Then have two additional answers ready so that if the interviewer follows up, you have something further to say. For example, if you didn’t finish a degree that would’ve been helpful to the job, be ready to answer an initial question with something like, “I felt it was better to go straight into the work world.” If the interviewer pushes further, be ready with another level of detail, such as, “I thought about it carefully. I knew it would carry negative connotations but I thought I would learn a lot more by working.” Lees says, “The key is to never be pushed so far that you are left high and dry without a smart answer.”

More tips and complete Harvard Business Review article

Executive Coach Reveals Best Career Advice Ever

Kristi Hedges


Executive coaches are sometimes called corporate shrinks. And while most of us would argue vehemently that what we do doesn’t approach psychological therapy — and we’re careful to steer clear of it — we will admit that we hear lots of private thoughts. Our entire job is predicated on intimacy, trust, and shared confidences.

We also see, in real time, how career strategies play out. We collect feedback on all sides about how commonly held wisdoms work — or crash and burn.
The reality is that a whole lot of this career stuff is situational. What works for one person, or in one company, doesn’t do so well elsewhere. That said, there are a few, consistent pieces of advice I’ve heard through my work that hold up anywhere, for any level of professional. Follow these, and you’ll fast-track your own career.

1. If you see a fire, run into it.
This was shared recently by a client (told to her by her Dad), and it echoes a sentiment I’ve held for years: in chaos, there is opportunity. Most major career accelerations happen when someone steps into a mess and makes a difference. In the technology sector, people will remark that one year in a start-up is like five years in an established company. There’s ample opportunity to stretch your wings, wear many hats, and create a name for yourself when there’s not a set plan to follow. You can find the same opportunity in any organization, if you seek it.

2. Follow up.
If, as Woody Allen made famous, 80% of life is showing up — then 90% of career success is following up. Our organizations are rife with lack of accountability, whether by intention or incompetence. Be the person who meets deadlines, holds others accountable, and heck, even remembers to say thanks when it’s due. Following through on your commitments is trust-building, and the opposite erodes it quickly and indelibly.

3. Tell the truth.
Truthfulness seems a bit obvious to be on this list. However, companies are rife with damaging  lies of omission. In an effort to look good, and not cause waves, we don’t express our truthful opinion. Being brave enough to respectfully state the truth in a politically astute way sets you apart. Most CEOs I know want to hear dissenting opinion; they crave more information not “yes” people. As Joann Lublin discussed in the Wall Street Journal, expressing a difference of opinion actually helps your career.

Tips 4 – 7 and complete Forbes article

50 Job Search Tips From Recruiters

When researching the most effective practices on conducting a job search, job seekers can get a lot of mixed messages on what to do (or what not to do) – depending on the who they talk to. HR and Recruiting professionals can be a great source of information, given their roles in the recruitment and selection process.

This article is comprised of job search tips from 50 different HR and Recruiting members of Minnesota Recruiters.

1. Use Google to find email addresses of target companies. Enter “*@domainname.higherleveldomain” For example, if looking for an email address at Pearson search “*@pearson.com”, which will give you several examples of their email format.  From there  you can fill in the target’s name.

2. Don’t assume the jobs posted online are the only positions available. Recruiters often close their postings online before jobs are filled. You must network and market yourself!

3. If you know any recruiters or managers who regularly interview prospective new employees, ask them to give you a mock interview and take their feedback on your résumé and your interview style. This will improve your confidence and performance in real interview situations.

4. Listen to opportunities even when you are happy in your position. A new opportunity may take you to an even better place, personally and professionally.

5. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone! If you let your thumbs do the talking, you’ll find yourself at the bottom of the inbox and a lose out on an opportunity.

RESEARCH AND PREP
6. Learn as much as you can about the interviewer before the interview, and prepare questions before the meeting.

7. Research the company prior to interviewing, in order to ask informed questions of your interviewer. Focus on questions that are pertinent to the position you are considering.

8. Do not only have answers prepared for the great things about yourself, but be prepared to answer the tough questions such as, “Describe the worst experience you have had with a customer? How did you handle it & what was the outcome?”

9. Never underestimate the power of preparing for an interview, and be armed with examples to showcase your skills. With more companies using phone screens and video conferencing for interviews, I would also suggest practicing in front of your webcam or over the phone with a friend.

10. Read the job description, not just the title before you apply to a job!

Tips 11 – 50 and Complete Article

5 Ways to Use Pinterest for Your Job Search

by

Now that Pinterest is a full-blown cultural phenomenon, people have started considering it for uses other than inspiration for recipes, home decor and the latest fashions. And with a shaky economy and millions of people either out of work, underemployed or looking to change jobs, Pinterest is now being used as a job search tool.
At the beginning of 2012, Mashable asked, Can Pinterest Help Your Job Search?, and we’re answering “Yes!” with five ways to use Pinterest in your job search and your career development.

1. Pin Your Resume

Search for “my resume” on Pinterest, and you’ll get thousands of hits. Be more specific with your search terms (writer resume, business resume, graphic design resume) and more results pop up. Some are basic resumes with standard information and layout. Others are stylized pieces with creative layouts and catchy graphics. Most fall somewhere in between. The goal of pinning your resume to Pinterest is to get it shared throughout the site, so make sure it’s somewhat eye catching, error-free and compelling — wouldn’t you want those qualities in your resume, anyway?

2. Create a Resume Pinboard


Rather than pinning your full resume as one pin, create an entire board that represents the different parts of your resume with different pins. Pin pictures of the companies you’ve worked for, schools you’ve attended, places you’ve volunteered and hobbies you enjoy. Because Pinterest is a visual medium, it can provide a multi-dimensional representation of your two-dimensional resume. And, utilize the text box given with each pin to describe the image, how it relates to your career and why it’s important to you.

3. Follow Career Experts

If you’re in the market for some job search advice, Pinterest has a lot to offer. Sites like CareerBliss use pinboards to showcase inspiring ideas and items related to finding work that makes people happy. College career offices such as Penn State’s give tips geared towards newbies in the workforce. And The 405 Club caters to career advice for the unemployed.

Tips 4,5, and Complete Mashable Article

10 Tips to Use Google Plus for Your Job Search

The social web is evolving with each passing day. Right from the day Google Plus (a social network introduced by Google) was announced, people have been flocking to join in. Google Plus social network offers some really cool features, apart from bolstering user security. Not only businesses, even jobseekers can use this social network for job search.

If you are ready to use Google Plus for job searching, given below are some of the most real tips you can use.

#1. If you don’t have a profile on Google Plus, go create one.

If you are there already, you need to optimize your profile. Optimizing your profile means filling out the details in a way that increases your visibility to employers. Include industry related keyword so you appear in relevant searches.

#2. Use the Circles feature to connect with influential people.

More importantly, add those people who are already employed in your target companies. Participate in their conversations to attract attention.

#3. Use the Hangouts feature to take your efforts to the next level.

You can use this feature to create job search clubs. Learn the basic rules and regulations of participating in hangouts.

#4. Find opportunities to highlight your talents and skills.

If you are really smart, you can easily grab the attention of companies or employers. It is also a good idea to ask questions related to the kind of job you are looking for.

#5. Engage.

When you genuinely engage on the Google Plus network, you will come across with many people regarding the hiring process. Companies might also want to interview you online. Therefore, it’s important that you know how to make the most of online interviewing.

Tips 6 – 10 and Complete Article