4 steps to landing that dream job

It all starts with a simple question. What is your dream job?

Tue, May 6th, 08:23


Perhaps you know exactly what you want or you have a few areas of interest, but take time out to hone it down to that dream role. Be realistic about it, do you have at least 3 out of the 5 requirements to move into this job? If not, are you willing to do what it takes to have at least 3 of the requirements – ie further education, voluntary work to gain experience – how much do you want this job? Will you do the hours it requires? Can you survive on the salary it is worth? This is an investment of your time but it’s vital.

You owe it to yourself to put this time in to find out if your dream is possible to achieve. Then you need to put in the work required to make it a reality.

1. Do your research on what is required to do this job well, assess your personality and work on your CV. Customise it very carefully to read well for the role you are searching for and seek feedback from peers or recruiters. Your CV is your first introduction to an employer – it has to be word-perfect, professional and reader-friendly. It should read as a clear, concise work history with a personal touch to help your personality shine through.

2. Source a strong recruiter who knows their stuff and is a specialist in your chosen area. Meet them face to face and tell them exactly what you want, the money you want, the location you want and articulate that you are not willing to compromise on this. Tell them you will continue to apply for jobs yourself but you will brief them on what you do – that you will be open and honest with them and you expect that in return from them. Offer to deal with them exclusively if they promise to do all they can to find you this dream job and keep you updated on their progress. Show them your CV – ask them for advice and ask them to create a covering letter for your own personal applications.

3. Practice your interview skills whenever you can, ask a friend to critique you. Research competency based interviewing and check all aspects of the questions you could be asked. Practice prepared answers in front of the mirror again and again and again. Ensure you are not overusing your hands when expressing yourself; if you are nervous this will be overdone. Ensure you are not saying “em” all the time and are confident in selling yourself. Ask your chosen recruiter for feedback on your interview skills. Ensure you have the balance between well-rehearsed and prepared, but be yourself! Never be negative and always have eye contact with your interviewer/interviewers. You need to have good examples of real life situations – ie: give them an example of how you thrived under pressure. Most importantly look the part, look smart and well groomed no matter what the level of role or type of role you are going for.

4. Research your prospective employer well before the interview – go to their website and read and digest as much as you can. Try and find out about their growth plans or what they have done recently, read all press releases. It’s essential you show great interest in the meeting by proving you have done your research – it shows you are serious. Know their competition. Know their benefits and have a really good set of questions to ask that are relevant to the role and the company at the end of the interview.

Still looking for your dream job? Browse thousands of opportunities on our job board.

Siobhan Kinsella

The Irish Times