How should I fill out my first job application? What should I include, and what should I leave out? It all depends on the job you are going for and what you want your career to look like.
With that in mind, let us look at three ways all job applications could stand out in the eyes of your future employer.
Highlight Specific Skills
Everybody is good at something, and most people can do at least two or three things well. While having a wide variety of skills will help you in your life and career, it doesn’t mean that you should mention all of them in every single job application. If you have taken guitar lessons at a prestigious music school, you should probably include that in your application at a conservatory or symphony orchestra. If you are an expert in python, java, or PHP, it would be a mistake not to highlight that when you’re trying to land a job as an engineer.
Still, not all your abilities are suitable for all professions. Of course, many are transferable and could be useful regardless of the position or industry in which you are in. Examples include presentation skills, communication ability, and sales experience. If you have one or several of these, chances are you will get hired.
But skills are not just measured in number. They are also based on the amount of knowledge and expertise you have. In today’s work environment, employers are hardly ever looking for generalists. Rather, they want experts who can handle projects and tasks in a speedy, effective manner. An advanced Salesforce CRM administrator is much more valuable than a person who knows both Salesforce and ClickUp, but only very little.
Somebody once said, “Leaders don’t create followers, they create more leaders.” This couldn’t be truer. One of the biggest issues entrepreneurs who have reached the end of their lives have is reconciling with the fact that somebody else will take over what was once theirs. Successful men and women created their firms through hard work, determination, and resilience. As a result, they expect their successors to do the same.
But how do you teach leadership? How do you mold someone into something they are not?
The truth is leadership only comes through experience and struggle. It is not a skill that you can learn at university, no matter how good it is. Instead, it is an instance where you make a decision that will benefit those around you.
If you want your application to stand out from the rest, incorporate as many of them as you can. If you lead a team on a successful project, don’t leave it out. Leadership is the most worthwhile aspect all businesses are looking for in their candidates. They want somebody who can guide the organization forward, someone who can take command when there are challenges and motivate others to do their best consistently.
Having the Right Cover Letter
Unless a company advises against writing a cover letter, make sure to attach it to your application form. It is the first thing most employers will look at, even before your resume. It measures not only your ability to write but also whether you deserve an initial interview or not.
A person who can write a passionate cover letter is often chosen over one who only enumerates a set of skills and accomplishments. The firm you would like to work at is interested in finding out what kind of person you are.
Unfortunately, they cannot see you, so their opinion needs to be based on something else. More often than not, this is the cover letter.
So, what should you include in it? Should you make it long or short? Is it more important to highlight education or work experience? Only you know the answers to these questions. Only you can decide.
If you are 25 years old and graduated from Harvard University but have only been working for a couple of years, your education is much more important. For people in their mid-forties experience is what matters the most, unless of course you just completed a specific program or got a certification.
For those who have neither, focus on why you want the job and what you can bring to the table. Perhaps you are self-driven or work hard. Maybe you have great social skills and can get along with anybody in any given situation.
Every year, millions of people worldwide join the workforce. The competition is as fierce as it has ever been. However, there are certain things you can do to stand out. You can highlight specific skills, detail instances of leadership, and write a killer cover letter.
By doing this, you will be well on your way to success.