I recently got hired to do a contract job for the upcoming year. Since the new year is coming it’s time for reflection. The number one thing I can say about job hunting is that it sucks. There are plenty of BuzzFeed articles about it.
Hopefully this blog post can give hope to people that are in this situation. Here are some things that I learned along the way while search for the elusive full-time job.
1. Netflix is your best friend!
It takes about 6 months to a year to find a job. Meaning a lot of free time to catch up on your shows.
2.Prepare, prepare, prepare.
There are plenty of resources out there. The behavior questions that you will receive are going to be practically the same.
3. You are also interviewing them as well
Don’t be intimidated by an interview. You are also judging them as well. If it’s not a good fit then it’s not a good fit. I’ve had interviews where my potential coworker told me that he did not really like his job. I’ve had an interviewer discriminate against me because I live on in the south side of Chicago. You don’t want to work for people like that. The worst thing about not having a job is having work related stress. You can learn more about a company’s culture at https://www.glassdoor.com/ Number 3 is for all the people of color out there. You guys will probably already know this but I just have to say it.
4. We do not live in a post racial society.
I am sure all of you know about the story of Jose/ Joe. If not check out the video below. Despite this you just have to keep going and make sure that you have a good portfolio and references.
Everyone that I know that has a job got their job because they knew someone. If you don’t have a good network go on http://www.meetup.com/ . You can go to tech meetups or even non-tech meetups like single and early 20s. Just get yourself out there and practice your elevator pitch.
6. Show off your work
Show it off anywhere. Even if you think that your work isn’t the best having something is better then having nothing at all. You can volunteer or do some online classes on Coursera /edX . You can post your work on github,youtube, blog, soundcloud, anywhere. There are so many free resources out there.
7. Talk to someone that is actually in that field.
I have never been on a tech interview in my life until this summer. It is completely different from doing a general mock interviews at your school’s career center. If you are a first gen student like me who is going into a complete different field from the rest of her family. Then I suggest you look at tip number 4 . Or you can go to a forum called The Workplace , it’s like StackOverflow but for work situations.
8. Tech recruiters don’t know anything.
That’s all I have to say about the subject. There is nothing wrong with being open to a conversation and you might make a friend along the way. But a lot of them just busy trying to get commission and most recruiters are not tech orientated people.
9. Don’t let reject get you down.
Sometimes it was meant to be child. You have to remind yourself that you are a smart person. I suggest looking at this Ted talk from Sean Stephenson . Rejection is a learn opportunity. During my time job hunting I’ve learned that working for a tech firm might not be the place for me. I want to get more into civic hacking and that I should look into government jobs.
10. Finding a job sometimes just boils down to luck