Job Search Tips for Recent Grads


Finding the right position after graduation can be incredibly difficult, especially when you graduate into a tough market. Whether you’re looking for a sales job or a trading job, these job search tips for recent grads can help you find the right career at the right company.

Job Search Tip #1: Treat Your Job Search Like a Job

Especially if you’re a recent grad, you should be treating your job search like a full-time position. Ideally, you’d spend the 40 hours a week you’d be in the office researching employment opportunities and companies, developing relevant skills, working on your resume and cover letter, applying for openings, networking with people in your field, practicing interview questions, and interviewing for positions. When you graduate into a bad job market, it can be discouraging, but the more effort you put into your search, the more likely you are to find a career that’s right for you.

Job Search Tip # 2: Follow E-mail Etiquette

As far as job search tips go, following e-mail etiquette can sometimes get lost in the shuffle. But first impressions are important, and since you may be making your first impression over e-mail, your e-mail skills are as important as your interview skills. Here are some tips to follow:

  • If you’re actively looking for a job, you should be checking your e-mail every day and responding promptly to any related e-mail that comes in.
  • Make sure you’re using proper grammar and spell-checking your e-mails before sending.
  • Be polite. Address the e-mail recipient respectfully, say please and thank you, and sign off appropriately.
  • Pay special attention to tone. You want to come off as warm, respectful, and approachable.
  • Be respectful of their time by getting straight to the point, using a descriptive subject line, and making sure they have all the context they need to respond.

Job Search Tip #3: Practice Interview Questions

Nothing is more exciting than getting an interview during your job search. Practicing interview questions beforehand is a great way to make sure you’re prepared for whatever types of questions they might throw your way. You’ll want to practice answering common interview questions specific to your experience and questions that might be more specific to the position you’re applying for. In addition to practicing potential interview questions, these job interview tips from AIFP’s president, John Vranizan, can help you nail the interview.

Job Search Tip #4: Do Your Research

Before an interview, you’ll want to research the company so you can talk intelligently about what they do and how your skills line up with what they’re looking for. You’ll also want to prepare some questions to ask during the interview to help show you’ve done your due diligence and to make sure that the company is the right fit for your personality and skillset.

While recent grads should go broad with the types of positions they’re applying to, it’s important to go deep with your research, especially when determining if a company culture is the right fit for you. Company culture refers to the personality of the organization, and because you’ll spend at least forty hours a week at work, the company culture at your first job will go a long way toward determining your success and happiness at the company.

Looking for entry level sales jobs in Portland, Oregon? Our paid trader training program provides the training and mentorship you need to build a sales career you can be proud of. Apply today to become a commodity trader at one of the best places to work in Portland. In the meantime, check out the AIFP blog, where we cover everything from the pros and cons of commission-only jobs to what it’s like to work at AIFP.

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