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What’s Holding You Back? – Skills and Experience

Hi Everyone

Now that we have settled into the new year, you will probably have noticed a lot of posts about goal setting and how you need to take action in order to move forward with your life. These posts are an invaluable source of information and inspiration and they are absolutely right, if you want to achieve your desired outcome, you need to take the steps to get there by setting goals and then acting on them but in the next few posts I want us to take a look at what may be holding you back from setting goals in the first place.

Sometimes in order for you to move forward you must reflect on the past and assess the present to see what changes need to be made. If you keep doing the same thing then you will always get the same result. If you are not happy with the result then you need to change what you are doing and there is no time like the present, so what are you waiting for?

Let’s consider some of the things that may be holding you back.

Not having the right skills or experience

There is no easy way to say this, if you haven’t got the right skills and experience for the job role that you desire, in these difficult economic times, you need to either obtain them or learn to convert previous experience and learnt skills into transferable experience and skills and if you can’t do that then you probably won’t get a look in because the competition is so tough.

Do not be fooled by a job advert that states: “Previous experience is not essential as full training will be given for the right candidate.”

If the interviewer can get a person with previous experience who has the correct basic skills, the right attitude for the job and is the right fit for the team, then they will go with them instead of someone with little or no experience. When I was a retail manager I recruited my own staff  and I advertised for the experience and skills that I required and yes I still got applicants applying with little or no relevant experience and as time is money in business, usually I would sift theses applications out on first look as I had a large number of applicants. Of the applicants that were sifted out there may have been some that had the right attitude or were a good fit for the team but because I didn’t put them through to the interview stage I would never know this, so having the right skills and experience is essential.

When I wasn’t working, on the odd occasion I would apply for a job that was out of my sector and one that I had little or no relevant skills or experience in, just as I thought, I would get a reject letter or worse, nothing at all. Upon analysis, the reason I got a rejection letter was because I appeared on paper to have some of the skills and experience that were relative to the job and some transferable skills but obviously not as good a offering as someone who blatantly had the skills and experience in that sector and therefore I wasn’t surprised I was rejected and took it on the chin. When I received no reply whatsoever, it was because on paper there were barely any skills and experience relevant to the role for which I had applied, so why should the employer bother to reply to me when it looked like I had randomly decided to ‘give it a go’. An employer wouldn’t like this attitude and to be honest neither do I and when I became a manager I understood that and if I were to apply for a job now I would always tailor my CV and Cover Letter to the Job specification and that’s why I get responses when a lot of other people don’t, so if you are struggling to get responses, now you know the secret, why not try it for yourself?

If you want to gain the skills and experience to get a job you desire, you need to do voluntary work, work experience and you may need to take a course as well.

To read about what else may be holding you back be sure to read the next post, until then, whatever you do, stay positive.

Sandra Bellamy

C.V., courses, cover letter, employment, job centre, job search, redundancies, Redundancy, unemployed, unemployment

Course you can

Hi Everyone

It makes me feel sad when I hear people say they have applied for many different jobs and they have not even had a reply!

Why?  I ask myself.

Speaking from an ex-recruiters’ perspective, it can be for a number of reasons.

  1. A poorly written CV
  2. No cover letter or a poorly written one
  3. Lack of experience
  4. Lack of skills
  5. Lack of knowledge

The thing is, you can do something about all of these and if you keep getting the same answer, for example, no answer at all, then it’s time to change what you are doing because it obviously isn’t working.

There are a number of people and places that can help you to write a good CV and cover letter and that is something I can help you with as part of my new redundancy services.

With regards to lack of experience, skills or knowledge, that is something that you need to learn for yourself and what better way to do it, than by going on a course.

This is particularly true if you are attempting a change of career and you are competing in a market with plenty of people who do have those credentials.

By going on a course, you will be able to decide if your new career, is one that you are passionate about and if it’s the right ‘fit’ for you.

A course will also:

  • Raise your self-confidence
  • Raise your self-esteem
  • Give you an idea of what the job may entail
  • Make you feel you are doing something worthwhile
  • Give you direction
  • Give you a sense of purpose
  • Enhance your communication skills
  • Show you have something ‘current’ to offer a new employer
  • Make you feel better
  • Give you a sense of fulfilment
  • Give you a greater sense of achievement
  • Make you realise, you can do it

So search your local college or university prospectus to find out more about various courses.  Many hold open evenings so that you can talk through your options.

Search the web for long-distance courses or other local courses.

Ask at the job centre, what local places hold free courses if you are on JSA.  There are often places that you can go to, to get a free or heavily subsidised course but you need to ask about these.  I have found a fair few in my local area.

Speak to your family, friends and contacts.  They may have gone on a course you didn’t realise they had been on and word of mouth is a good way of hearing about it.

Good luck and let me know how you get on.

Stay positive

Sandra

employment, interviews, job search, redundancies, Redundancy, unemployed

5 Ways To Increase Your Chances of Getting a Job

Hi Everyone

In these tough economic times when competition is at an all time high, you need to show a potential employer, you are the one that they should employ.

These are my top 5 tips on how to increase your employability if you are currently redundant:

1)  Every job application must be specifically targeted to each job and must include a targeted cover letter.

2)  In the interview you must be confident and sell your skills and experience to the employer, with relevance to the role for which you are applying.

3)  During an interview, you must be prepared to answer the question, what are your weaknesses?  And turn those weaknesses into strengths.

4)  Do voluntary work.  It increases your chances of getting a job because you are already working and therefore deemed to be more employable than someone who isn’t.

5)  Take a course.  If you are updating your skills you will be seen by a potential employer as someone who is adaptable and willing to learn.

Stay positive.

Sandra Bellamy