I wrote a book (Barneys, Bergdorfs & Bill$) that teaches you how to understand and manage your hard earned bucks… but first, you have to actually get a job! This is a post about how.
The summer after my sophomore year, I asked a family friend if they would like a summer intern and they said yes. It was informal, it was unpaid, but it was wonderful.
Don’t be afraid to ask if you can help out at a company you find interesting…and you don’t always have to get paid…if you can afford living expenses, pay doesn’t matter! If you work hard, compensation of some sort will usually be awarded. Your main goal, though, is the experience.
So take a risk. Ask if they would “hire” you for the summer. The worst they can say is no.
It is NEVER too early to get work experience.
Summer seems like play time, which when you are a freshman and sophomore is understandable, but it is actually the best time to try out what you might want to do for a career one day.
Before I did ANY of this, I crafted my résumé. It’s as easy as getting a template from Google. First, I put in all of my experience and then took it to our college Career Center.
Yes, there is this place called a Career Center, and yes, you should definitely check it out.
These peeps are PROS at writing résumés, and guess what…their help is FREE! They’ll return a draft with all the changes you need to make. From there, get out there and send it off! That will be your first step at landing a job or internship!
That Awkward Career Fair
During junior year I went to the college career fair. They have these once a semester and you should ALWAYS go. They’re a little awkward, yes, but it’s an excellent place to learn and network.
Have a résumé in hand. Be sure to bring plenty of copies—like 20—and print on thick paper as it is more professional. Once you’re there, just go up and start a conversation with one of the company reps. Never judge a company before you meet them,it could be a perfect fit.
From there, you hopefully get invited to interview.
My first one was the NEXT day (that is how it usually will be.) It was on-campus with the company recruiter. That night I went home and Googled EVERYTHING. What do they specialize in? Where are they headquartered? What’s the name of the CEO? Everything about the company.
Never go into an interview blind. Your résumé may get you in the door, but the interview will make or break you.
They’ll be asking you tough questions, but you also should be prepared to ask them questions. Most of my interviews ended with “do you have any questions for us?” “No” is not a good answer and neither is a question you could—and should—have Googled the night before.
Put in the work now and it will pay off when you get that 2nd interview.
Now let’s talk about the outfit. Dress to impress, but don’t try to be to be anyone but yourself. Be your most authentic self in every part of this process.
Now get out there and get that job!
PS. Everything you need to know about drafting a stellar résumé you can find in my book, Barneys, Bergdorfs & Bill$: A Girlfriends’ Guide to Finance.
Need a dress for your interview? Download Nimble Fashion here.