You have worked hard, made good decisions, and sacrificed. You have focused like a laser on your academic experience. And then the pandemic happened. That internship you hustled and sweated for? It went virtual, or worse, got canceled. So how do you bounce back from that and everything else going on right now?
Our 7-Day Career Prep Challenge is designed to help you work towards landing your dream job or internship. We’ll guide you through a simple step-by-step 7-day checklist that will push you towards your goals, connect you with industry professionals, and maximize the remaining weeks left in your summer vacation. Let’s get you hired!
Download the printable 7-Day Career Prep Challenge Checklist.
Today’s challenge is about setting some goals relevant to your professional, post-collegiate career. Creating goals gives you long-term vision and short-term motivation. They’ll help you to structure your time and resources so that you can make the most of every opportunity.
To help you better articulate your goals, consider asking “What is my dream job or dream industry?” Is there a day-to-day type task; i.e., selling, writing or, programming that you want to perform? Are there industries or causes that you are really passionate about? Perhaps it’s more about the title and your goal is to become a manager or a senior executive leading a division, or even a company. Write them down.
Set realistic short-term and long-term goals to help you explore your personal interests and passions. Goals are meant to push you and allow for personal growth so don’t be afraid to really go for it here.
To help get you thinking, here are some goal examples you might consider:
- Find two mentors or career coaches in your desired industry.
- Listen to at least one podcast a week around your desired field of interest.
- Read three books involving your desired field of work or study.
- Have a polished, ready to send resume by X date.
- Get a part-time internship during the school year in an industry you are excited about..
Having a vision for your professional future means you have something to work towards and something to look forward to. Take time now to set new goals for your career so that you can maximize your time around the activities that will propel you forward!
Today’s challenge is about building your own virtual internship by making some great connections in the companies, industries, and roles you are interested in. Whether you have a clear picture of where you want to go in your career or are feeling kind of lost, professionals working in the industries and roles that you find interesting can (and want!) to offer you guidance. Their advice can provide just the push needed to help you move forward as you navigate these uncertain times.
Your challenge: Sign up for Turazo’s Online Career Fair and book your first session.
Quickly set up a profile and within five minutes you will be able to search for coaches within industries and roles that interest you. We’ll help match you with the right coach or you can search over hundreds of professionals on the platform. You pick a time on their calendar to set up a 20-minute virtual video coaching session, and that’s it! These sessions are free, and because they are set up to be conversational and student-driven, they can be a powerful way for you to learn more about the careers that interest you.
One of the great things about participating in Turazo’s Online Career Fair is that you own the student/coaching meeting and relationship. Remember yesterday’s challenge? It’s your goals and needs that drive the sessions. The best way to help your future coach help you is to be clear and specific about what you hope to get out of your sessions.
Once you’re signed-up, here are 10 questions you can ask your coach. Need help with your profile? We got you.
Day 3: Get a Solid Profile Picture
Research shows that a professional profile photo is crucial for making yourself look competent, likable, and influential. First impressions mean everything, so today’s challenge is making sure you have a profile picture that truly represents who you are.
You don’t need a professional photograph, but you should be appropriately dressed, the photo should be high-quality, and it should be current. Have your roommate or your parents take the photo for you - leave the selfies for your Instagram. If that’s not possible, use your cell phone timer as a way to take the picture yourself.
Having a good profile photo will not only increase your response and referral rates but is also a good way to build your personal brand.
Fact: Hiring managers are checking your Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, TikTok, and are searching your name in Google.
Today’s challenge is all about ensuring you are squeaky clean across the internet and your social media channels. Here are some tips to make sure your accounts are all job-search appropriate:
Step 1: Google Yourself: Start an incognito search in Google and start a little self-Google search. You’d be surprised what Google can pick up! This activity will help you see yourself through the eyes of a hiring manager or mentor that is looking into you. If there is anything out there that you’d rather others not see, take the necessary steps to remove it.
Step 2: Assess Your Social Personality: Take a look at your content and determine if there is anything out there that might contradict who you are or who you want to portray. Vulgar and violent language, photos of you partying, comments complaining about your teacher or former boss are all things that are probably better left off your public social media accounts.
Day 5: Design a Killer Resume
Employers have a minimal amount of time to review your resume—simplicity and readability are key. Here are some important things to remember:
Make it brief. Include only the most relevant information so hiring managers can quickly understand who you are and how you might fit the role.
Include numbers. Employers are highly responsive to measurable results. Don’t be afraid to quantify your achievements!
Proofread and edit. It’s critical that your resume is free of spelling and grammar errors. Tools like Grammarly are helpful but don’t be afraid to ask a trusted friend or colleague to review as well.
Style matters when it comes to your resume. Here are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to how your resume is presented:
Keep Your Resume to One or Two Pages. For entry- and mid-level professionals, one page is the most common resume length. Two pages are fine if you have extensive experience or skills and really can’t cut things down further. Three or four pages are almost exclusively for senior executives or academics with publications.
Choose a Template That Reflects Your Industry. Design your resume to align with the industry you are applying for. For design and marketing, you can get away with more personality that showcases your skills. For other professions, stick to a clean and simple format that lets your experiences shine. Check out tools like Canva that make editing templates super easy.
Conquer Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). An ATS narrows an applicant pool for an employer by searching for specific keywords (among other things). Think of it like a small-scale Google search. The recruiter or hiring manager decides which keywords to search for—these usually match the skills, qualifications, experience, or qualities that are most important for the job. So if you want to make it past the ATS, you’ll need to include the important keywords the position calls for in your resume.
Save Your Resume as a PDF
Day 6: Book a Second Session on OCF
Remember how awesome you felt after your first Online Career Fair session? Let’s do it again!
Today’s challenge is to search for a new coach to connect with and book a second session. We have hundreds of professionals from great companies ready and willing to speak with you one-on-one. Just pick your next mentor and choose times to talk.
If you have several interests or are unsure what part of an industry you may be interested in, try picking a mentor from a different background this time. Or if you have a dream company, choose an employee from that company even if they have a slightly different path from you. The options are endless— you can also pick a mentor who may be able to answer your questions about graduate school or entering the workforce.
Now that you’ve had a session under your belt, take the confidence and run with it! Choose a different coach who can help you take the next steps or offer a different perspective to the questions you posed to the first coach.
If you have several interests or are unsure what part of an industry you may be interested in, try picking a mentor from a different background this time. Or if you have a dream company, choose an employee from that company even if they have a slightly different path than yours. The options are endless— you can also pick a mentor who may be able to answer your questions about graduate school or entering the workforce.
Choose a different coach who can help you take the next steps or offer a different perspective to the questions you posed to your first coach. Now that you’ve had a session under your belt, take that confidence and run with it!
Day 7: Write a Thank You Card or Email
Did you know that most hiring managers pay close attention to how well (and how quickly) you write a thank you email after an interview?
Today's challenge is about getting you in the habit of giving thanks. Whether it's after a session on Online Career Fair, or just an out of the blue email you want to send a former teacher or colleague, sending a thank email is a great step in strengthening a professional relationship.
When it comes to Online Career Fair, a coach who receives a thank you email will be more inclined to stay connected in the future - whether it’s with potential job opportunities, recommendations, or simply networking, it pays to stay connected. It doesn’t have to be a long message, but a simple thank you goes a long way. It will set you apart from the crowd and keep your relationship with the mentor positive!