How do you put your best foot forward?

15 Sep 2015 | Naomi Marshall

Finding a new job takes time and you need to put your best foot forward. Not just when interviewing with your potential new boss but from the moment you hit “send” on your email with your CV.

Here are our Sprint Tips for “Putting your Best Foot Forward” & landing the job:

First Impressions
Your CV is your first chance to not only make a good impression, but to make an impression at all. Recruiters will look at hundreds of CVs every week. You need to make sure your CV stands out for the right reasons; no spelling or grammar mistakes (PLEASE!!) and if you are including a cover letter, take the time to address it to the right person.

To make a good impression and to secure an interview, your CV needs to match the requirements of the job. If the job ad is asking for experience supporting a large team, make sure your CV highlights your experience supporting a large team. If you have no relevant experience, you will need to make sure your cover letter addresses why you are applying for the job.

You have to prepare for every interview, even the initial interview with the recruiter. The amount of times a candidate has said to me “I wouldn’t wear this to the job interview” or “I wouldn’t do this in front of the client”…GUESS WHAT…If you don’t impress us and demonstrate you’ve got what it takes, we won’t be recommending our client meets you. We will assume how you act in front of us, is how you will behave in front of the client. The recruiter is just as important as the hiring manager and preparing to meet the recruiter should not be underestimated.

Prepare for every interview (with the recruiter, the hiring manager, HR or anyone else). Take the time to research the company, know the job description and know your own CV. If you know whom you are meeting with, research them and their experience on LinkedIn. It doesn’t have to be hugely time consuming, but it is easy for an interviewer to recognise those candidates who have taken the time to prepare versus those who have not.

The more you prepare, the more you emphasise your commitment to the role, your willingness to learn and your enthusiasm to get the job. That is the person the hiring manager wants in their team.

Do we sound like a broken record about this? Good. Presentation is so so so important. You cannot put your best foot forward if you turn up to an interview (at any stage of the recruitment process) and you are not immaculately presented.

Neat and tidy hair, appropriate clothing for the job and company you are interviewing with. Make sure your shirt is ironed, your stockings don’t have ladders and you have appropriate footwear on. Keep your perfume to a minimum; you don’t want to leave a lingering scent of you in the room.

Presentation is in the detail so take time out before you go in for your interview to make sure you’re looking at your best.

Stay positive. We understand it can be draining but don’t give up hope and stay positive. The right job is out there for you.

As a recruiter, when someone becomes ‘Negative Nancy’ about the recruitment process, it is obvious and it doesn’t bode well. We want to see the best of you, and when we recommend our client to meet you, we want them to see a sparkle in your eyes. So even if you are feeling a little drained, keep it at bay and remember that a positive attitude is the type of person that a hiring manager wants to bring into the team.

Badmouthing a previous employer or the recruitment process is not professional or endearing to a potential new manager. No matter what your experience has been in recent times (even the world’s worst boss); keep your interview positive and focus on your skills and what you will bring to the job you are interviewing for.

Follow Up
You nailed the interview! Great. But even after the interview, you still need to put your best foot forward and stand out from your competition. Follow up! Send a note, drop a brief email or even send a LinkedIn connection with a thank you. Let the recruiter know how much you want the job and don’t be afraid to let the hiring manager know too. That said, keep it brief and professional (and only if they gave you a business card) and don’t bring up anything new. Short and simple = Leaving a lasting impression.

Landing the dream job starts long before you meet your potential new manager. You need to do your homework and be putting your best foot forward from the moment you decide you want a new role.

Share this post:

We want to hear from you!