It's that time of year, and I'm starting to get a lot of requests for advice from communication majors who will be graduating soon. So here are a few Do's and Don'ts that I think will help:
1. DO put together a resume that lists your internships and any other work where industry exposure or use of communication skills were important. Proofread it and have someone else proof it so you're sure it has no typos or grammatical errors.
2. DO send your resume to various PR firms (a great learning environment to start your PR career) even if they're not listing any openings.
3. DO have an open mind and be willing to check out different opportunities - remember that you don't know everything yet and it's great to get lots of interviewing experience. Always do your best.
4. DO your research before any interview. Check out who you're meeting with on LinkedIn, read current articles about the company and /or their industry, go through the job desc…
Some say that the resume is dead. But i think it still has a few more good years. The resume is in fact, like a living thing: it changes and grows.
Resumes are kind of like menus. You hear about that special Kobe Beef Hamburger with basil aioli on top but you still have to see it on the menu before you order it. Same thing with a resume. I look at LinkedIn profiles, online portfolios and resumegrams and sometimes I'm really entertained. But i need to see plain old resume to really get the truth.
Resumes get attached to meeting invites, they get sent to clients and hiring managers, they get read on Sunday mornings and handed out at networking events. You can't shake hands and give someone your link.
You can complement your resume with an online version, a visual version or a power point. But while people can still read words without pictures and bullet points, a communicator should be able to provide this basic, well written, simple to understand tool.
Entry Level: No Previous Experience Necessary - Today, a job ad like that would probably be a scam. It's difficult to land an entry level job at a top company if you have no experience. For communication graduates it means having a good idea of what you want to do before you graduate, and getting good internships under your belt before you hit the job market.
For companies, especially PR firms, hiring a good intern is like finding a pot of gold. But after a high profile lawsuit, the Dept. of Labor took a closer look at internship abuses. Last year, the Fair Labor Standard Act included some guidelines that we all should know about. Basically, an internship has to benefit the intern not the employer. These are the determining factors considered:
The extent to which the intern and the employer clearly understand that there is no expectation of
compensation. Any promise of compensation, express or implied, suggests that the intern is an
employee—and vice versa. The extent to wh…