Ten Tips for Success in a Phone Interview in Your Second Language

The phone interview: it’s a daunting prospect even in your first language.  But in your second language the thought is even more nausea-inducing.  As a common first step in the recruitment process, it is essential to be well equipped for the moment of that all-important phone call.

Regardless of your level of fluency in a language, speaking on the telephone can reduce even the most confident speaker to a mere stammer.  The difficulty resides in the fact that you can no longer rely on the luxuries of lip-reading and body language.  78% of communication is non-verbal, which explains why a phone call can be such a challenge for foreign speakers.  However, if you are interviewing at an international company it is expected that you will be proficient at conducting phone calls in other languages.  This skill today is indispensable, so here are a few tips to bear in mind before the phone rings:

  1. Prepare notes.  The beauty of the phone call is that you are invisible.  Play this to your advantage and ensure that you prepare answers in note form for questions that you know will be asked, such as “Why do you want this job?”  Additionally, jot down any technical vocabulary which you are likely to forget on the spot.
  2. Don’t be tempted to read entirely from your notes as you will sound robotic and probably speak for too long.  Use it instead as a prompt sheet if you lose your way.
  3. Keep your speed in check.  When nervous and speaking a foreign language, we are likely to speak too quickly.  This can lead to slurred phrases and mispronounced words, making it very difficult for the person on the other side of the line to understand.  Your interviewer will appreciate your measured speed just as you will appreciate his/hers in return.
  4. Pause before you answer.  Sometimes it can be tempting to reply straight away, especially if you are used to taking language exams when hesitating means lost marks.  During a phone interview however, it is expected that you will pause for reflection before answering.
  5. Don’t be afraid to ask your interviewer to repeat something.  Bear in mind that even native speakers have to ask for things to be repeated on the phone.  It is better to clarify a question than to answer what you think was asked and be mistaken.
  6. Be wary of formality.  If you have only had experience of speaking on the phone in a foreign language with friends before, do not be tempted to drop to this level of informality in your phone interview.  For instance, “Hey” and “Bye bye” are not appropriate for a phone interview in English.  Also, for languages which have a polite and an impolite form, such as the “tu” and “vous” form in French, be sure to use the polite form.
  7. Phone signal.  This is vital.  Why make things harder for yourself by trying to hear over background noise or a poor connection?  If you have access to a landline, be sure to give this number to your interviewer rather than your mobile.
  8. Practice as much as possible at speaking on the phone in the given language prior to the interview. If you find comprehension difficult, ringing company numbers with automated messages can be an excellent way to improve your listening skills on the phone.
  9. Ensure that you are well acquainted with basic phone vocabulary.  Here is an excellent site which lists the most important phrases for phone calls in English.
  10. Don’t set the bar too high. If you are far from fluent in a language, it is better not to pretend that you are on your CV as you will quickly be found out the moment you pick up the phone.

If you found these tips helpful, take a look at some of our other articles.  And if you’re looking for a job, consult the offers on our website.

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This One Vital Tip Could Make You a Better Networker…

Have you ever been introduced to someone only to forget his or her name seconds later?  You’re not alone; just look what happened to presenter Charlie Stayt when he seemed to momentarily forget his co-presenter Susanna Reid’s name live on the BBC news.  His bumbled excuses make for awkward viewing and certainly don’t seem to go down too well with Susanna. 

So, why does remembering somebody’s name make such a difference?

As Dale Carnegie, arguably the most acclaimed careers coach in history wrote back in 1936, ‘a person’s name is, to that person, the sweetest and most important sound in any language’.  Decades later, it’s the one piece of advice which still holds true.  It’s the ticket to making a connection with someone in a few moments, the difference between him or her wanting to walk away or continue the conversation.  That’s why salesmen always address customers by their first name.  On a conscious level, you might think it invasive, but on an unconscious level, the moment you hear your name your engagement level shoots right up.  In the world of networking, this knowledge can be a powerful tool.  If you can remember someone’s name, especially after a single introduction, networking events will suddenly seem a lot easier.  And it all starts with one little tip: having a genuine interest in others.

A psychology professor has asserted that there is no such thing as being naturally talented at remembering names but that the ability stems from being interested in others[1].  Those who genuinely care about forming relationships and learning about other people are more likely to recall names.  So, what does this mean for you?  While you can no longer excuse yourself on the basis that you’re “bad with names”, you needn’t resign yourself to the fact that you can’t get better.  Here are a few tips:

  • Number one: Listen. How many times has someone been introducing himself or herself to you and rather than listen, you’ve been trying to think of what to say next?  The next time you’re in this situation: listen, look out for the name and mentally log it.
  • The best advice I ever received was to repeat the person’s name following the introduction. “Hi, I’m Susan”.  “Nice to meet you, Susan.  I’m Tanya”.  The act of repeating the name aloud will further cement it in your memory.
  • Don’t rely on name tags. These prevalent white stickers are evidence that you’re not alone in your toil, which can be reassuring.  However, as Joyce Russell points out, if you rely on name tags, you’re not actually making an effort to learn names.  The result? They’re in one ear and out the other in seconds.
  • If you particularly struggle, then this is a useful tip proposed by Kristi Hedges.  If you meet a Jessica and your aunt is called Jessica, make a connection.  The next time you meet her, you’ll immediately think this person has the same name as my aunt.
  • If the person’s name is less common and you don’t know anyone with that name, word association can help.  Think “Henrietta likes hens”.  The next time you and Henrietta cross paths, you’ll picture her carrying a hen and with that, you’ll recall her name.

Now for the golden question: can you remember the name of either of the BBC presenters mentioned in paragraph one?  If you can, take advantage of this skill when networking.  If not, you might want to have another look at those tips above!

For more useful advice, take a look at our website and, if you’re looking for a job, why not consult our latest offers?

[1] Kansas State University. “What’s your name again? Lack of interest, not brain’s ability, may be why we forget.” ScienceDaily. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120620113027.htm (accessed November 27, 2014)

How to make sure you don’t lose your language skills

If you are a multilingual job seeker in the UK, pay attention!

In today’s job market, things are getting more and more competitive. With new records of students graduating with degrees every year in Britain, there simply aren’t enough jobs to satisfy everyone’s needs. As a multilingual job seeker, your best assets are of course your languages. The question is; how do you keep them up to scratch.

There are many different ways in which you can keep your languages going and although many of them may seem simple and obvious, they are very important. For someone like myself who is bilingual in English and French, it is easy just to coast along in English (as it is my mother tongue) and living in Paris, most of my friends and family are English speaking. I find it is crucial to speak as much French as possible with native speakers. Be aware that foreigners do always like to practise their English so be insistent.

Reading is so important to keep your languages ticking over. If you can’t find an interesting piece of French literature, then just get a translated version of your favourite English book. Although this isn’t as good as reading French books, this is still very beneficial. Not a book person? Read a French paper once a day or subscribe to a French magazine eg. le Point. If you are not comfortable with that level of language or simply not sufficiently interested in current affairs, you could try a more informal magazine via Bayard Jeunesse eg. Okapi. It may be targeted at teenagers but is informative, easy to read and equally well-suited to adults with short attention spans!

Everyone likes a good film so there is no excuse not to watch them in French. It is such an easy way to consolidate your French and you are pretty spoilt for choice when it comes to French cinema. In fact watching French television is very good for your languages. Just watching the 8 o’clock news every day is worth doing. You can also listen to the French radio and listen to French music (although it is not everyone’s cup of tea!)

If you have visited France or are planning to visit France in the future, make sure you keep in touch with the people you meet. This is the most important part of keeping your language at a solid level. There is no substitute for actually having a conversation in French with a French person. It is even worth finding a pen pal you can write to in French and they they can write to you in English. That way you are both winners.

Grammar. I have kept this to last. Unfortunately this is equally as important as your oral skills. Prospective employers will be keen to test your written French so accuracy is vital. The only way to do it is to practise, like anything else. There are plenty of websites available to test your grammar. You just have to grin and bear it and you will reap the benefits.

Put a stop to those job seeking bad habits

 

If you’re one of the many job seekers out there who’s been out of work for a while, you’ll know exactly how easy it is to settle into an unproductive routine. Perhaps you’ve been working for 10 or 20 years in a “full on” corporate environment and now find yourself in a world without all that hassle. And who doesn’t enjoy a little break after the stresses of professional life? You began a period of some much-needed time off which, after a few weeks, evolved into a period of optimistic and enthusiastic job hunting. But now it feels like that was years ago.  You can’t remember how many applications you’ve sent off, how many interviews you’ve been to, you’ve lost sight of where you are going and you’ve settled into a routine of bad habits.

At the moment you’re lost. But what’s important to remember is that losing your way does not mean the journey is over. Most job seekers go through a rut at one point or another. The key is to break the trend and to put a stop to those classic job seeking bad habits. So here’s my list of habits which you have to avoid (or stop doing!):

1)      You’ve lost sight of your objectives

It’s understandable that after you’ve been applying for specific jobs for a long time you start to care less about the type of job you’re applying for. While you should be more flexible with certain aspects of your job search, it is essential that you do not lose sight of your career goals. So if you currently find yourself applying for anything and everything you come across then stop now. The process of sending your CV off to every available job is ultimately a pointless one. Make sure that you are actually interested in (and capable of doing) the jobs that you apply to, as well as tailoring each CV you send off to the specific job description.

2)      You’ve settled in to the comfort of the post-job funk

As I’ve said, everybody enjoys a little time off but you cannot settle into a completely unproductive routine. Give your day some structure. Sure, take the weekend off, but carry out each weekday as if it was a workday. Get up at a reasonable hour, set yourself some goals and complete those goals. Just sitting at a desk, applying for a couple of jobs and making a few casual phone calls is not enough to secure yourself your next job, and if you’re telling yourself it is then you’re lying. Persistence is key and of course, after time, it gets harder but you cannot give up or become lazy. Remember, looking for work is a job in itself so don’t let yourself think otherwise.

3)      You’ve lost your positivity

Negativity is the natural reaction to failure. I’m not going to pretend the job search is an easy task, but maintaining a positive outlook and an optimistic approach is the only way to keep going and finally land a job. It may be a long road but it’s not one without a destination. You cannot let yourself get down and you have to keep motivated because negativity will come across in your application. A hiring manager will be able to tell if you’re not enthusiastic and if you’re not then why should he be? Keep your family and friends close, do things you enjoy and keep happy. Remember what you’re working for.

4)      You’re stuck using the same old moves

Whilst it is important to make sure all your applications are different, it is also essential that you do not use the same job seeking tactics over and over. If you’ve tried something that doesn’t seem to be working then try it in a different way or try something completely different. Take a risk, step out of your comfort zone, do whatever you can to get yourself that job. Fear of failure is a powerful barrier for job seekers but “the only real failure in life is the failure to try.”

5)      You’ve stopped following up

If you have been job seeking for a while then the chances are you’ve applied to quite a number of jobs. It is undoubtedly difficult to keep on top of everything you’re doing but you have to do so in order to get a job. If you forget to follow up then all you’re doing is harming your chances. So make sure to organize this information, perhaps in a word document or excel spreadsheet, and that way you’ll always know what you’re doing.

So there’s a few of the bad habits which you cannot afford to let yourself fall in to as a job seeker. Remember, keep motivated, keep organized and keep focused, you will find yourself a job eventually.

How to write a great cover letter

 

The cover letter is your sales pitch. It’s your chance to tell the employer why they should give you the job. The CV is pointless without it so if you’ve been writing “Please find enclosed my CV” and ending your email or letter there then stop now. The cover letter gives you the perfect opportunity to stand out from the crowd in a way that your CV cannot. It’s quite simply crucial. But how do you write a great one?

The chances are the hiring manager has received a lot of applications and the fact of the matter is that they can’t read every one. A great cover letter means you have to make what you say count. The employer is going to quickly sift through them so you’ve got about 20 seconds to make an impact. That’s 20 seconds to make whoever’s reading want to continue reading. So let’s start from the beginning.

Before you even start writing you want to do some research. Research the company, their history, their culture etc. You need to know exactly what the company does and what its mission is. Hinting at this knowledge in the cover letter is the perfect way to let the employer know you’re interested in the company and can take the initiative. Then you need to research the role you are applying for. What profile are they looking for? You can then use this information and the right terminology to describe yourself. Doing some research and making a plan before you begin will make it much easier to write effectively.

Now to the most important aspect of the cover letter, the beginning. As I said you’ve got about 20 seconds to make an impact, so that makes the start of the letter the key. The opening paragraph should be short and hard-hitting. Explain why you are writing and where you heard about the offer. If you heard about it through a contact at the company then mention that person’s name as a personal referral can prove very beneficial.

The second paragraph is where you answer why exactly they should hire you. Discuss your professional and academic experience, but only mention the things that are totally relevant to the job that you are applying for. This should not be a list as you want the letter to flow and show your writing skills. Now go back to the job description wherever you have seen it advertised. Try to include how you have shown each desired characteristic in your past experience and do the same with the job responsibilities.

Now for a move into the future. What can you do for the company? Outline your career goals, again keeping relevant to the job you’re applying for. This is another opportunity to expand on your CV and include your research. For example you can mention the company’s goals for the next year and how you can help them achieve that.

The last paragraph should be some form of initiation of contact. Mention that you would like an interview, at their convenience of course. Do not bring in things such as money as it is often interpreted negatively. However, some offers will ask you to include salary expectations and in that case you should include a broad range. Just as the beginning of your cover letter is key, how you close it is essential too. Finish with a “Yours Sincerely” and signing your name.

Finally, here are some key things to remember when writing your cover letter:

  • Try not to sound arrogant or boastful as this is a particularly undesirable trait.
  • Do not use the common phrases that everyone uses. For example, saying you are dynamic tells the company absolutely nothing about you.
  • However, do use buzzwords. As I have said you should use the job description when writing your cover letter. Include buzzwords that will catch the eye of an employer.
  • Try not to exceed 4 paragraphs or make it too long. No one wants to read an essay.

Remember all this and you stand a chance of standing out from the crowd and getting that job.

Good Luck!

The Perfect CV: 5 Key Tips

 

Your CV is your first impression. It’s the first chance you get to stand out from the crowd and grab the employer’s attention. According to a recent survey, employers receive an average of around 70 CVs for each position, only spending 1-2 minutes looking at each one. So, with around 60 seconds to impress the person reading your CV you had better make sure it is the best possible representation of you that it can be. But how do you do that?

Well, even though there are numerous CV templates out there, there is no one right or perfect CV. Each job requires a different type of CV and each employer will have a slightly different approach to the selection process. However, there are certain things that you need to do on your CV to give yourself the best chance of standing out.

So here are my top 5 CV tips:

#1: Put your career summary at the top

The last thing a hiring manager wants to do is search for your employment history. By putting it at the top it is the first thing they will see, and with only 1 or 2 minutes to impress you want to make sure to prove you are qualified straight away. It also helps to put the job title or company name in bold, depending on which one is more impressive.

#2: Be relevant

Employers don’t need to know that you had a paper route when you were 16 (or something else equally as irrelevant). As I said, each CV you send off should be different and therefore you should include the work experience that is relevant to the job that you are applying for. Employers hate waffle and you shouldn’t make a CV over 2 pages as it probably won’t get read.

#3: Simplicity is key

As tempting as it may be to add fancy formatting with borders and colours etc, in most cases a hiring manager will look on it as unprofessional and therefore your chances of getting the job are ruined. There’s nothing wrong with a simple, black and white CV so there’s really no need to be overly fancy. Recruiters don’t like it.

#4: Use Keywords

With the volume of CVs being received and the resulting short period of time looking at your CV recruiters will often scan your application for keywords or buzzwords. In fact a lot of the time employers use tracking systems to separate unqualified candidates so make sure you include them. You can find the necessary keywords in the job descriptions which, if incorporated, will ensure that you end up on top of the pile.

#5: Check your spelling and grammar

There’s nothing worse than receiving a CV with careless spelling mistakes or simple grammar errors (especially when you’re using spell check!). Ask someone to proof read your CV to make sure it is correct because if you have made silly mistakes I can almost guarantee your CV will get thrown away.

So that’s my top 5 tips for creating the best possible résumé. Of course you cannot guarantee that you will get the job but if you incorporate these tips into your CV you stand a chance.

Good luck!

 

 

 

The Perfect Interview

 

I’m going to start by saying that there is no such thing as a “perfect” interview.

There are only two types of interview: the one that gets you the job and the one that doesn’t. There is no step-by-step guide which can guarantee you success. Granted, that may seem like quite a negative start but you have to be realistic. You cannot get yourself a job through a “quick fix” solution. What you can do is maximize your chances of getting employed by knowing what interviewers like and, sometimes more importantly, what they don’t like. So let’s get started.

You will have all heard the phrase “Location, location, location: the three things that matter in property.” Well preparation, preparation, preparation is the most important thing for an interview. If you want to have any chance of succeeding and impressing your interviewers you have to prepare because (and I promise this will be the last cliché phrase I will throw at you) “failing to prepare is preparing to fail.” But it is most certainly true. If you haven’t prepared, it will become very obvious, very quickly to your interviewer and that means you don’t get the job.

So, what should you do?

First, research the company. Read their mission statement; get to know what they’re about, how they work and learn about some of their history. Think about how you could fit into the company and convey this to your interviewers. This shows them that you are interested and dedicated.

It is also important to prepare an outline of what you are going to say. However, DO NOT over-prepare to the point where you are practically reciting paragraphs you have written. It will be obvious to the interviewer and if you get caught off guard you may crash and burn. Know your strengths and think of possible answers for classic interview questions;

e.g.

  • What are your strengths? (And possibly the more frequently asked, what are your weaknesses?)
  • Why did you leave your previous job? It is very important to know your CV as they will most likely ask you about previous roles you have undertaken
  • Why should we hire you? This is where you can combine your strengths and experience with the research you have done and impress the interviewers

Finally, you want to prepare some questions to ask the interviewer(s) at the end. They will ask you if you have any questions. You want to show them that you are interested in the company. Now, the questions to ask will depend on how the interview has gone and what job you are applying for but, some typical questions which you can ask are:

  • What is the business environment/culture like?
  • What opportunities are there for advancement?
  • What is the dress code?

I would avoid asking about salary straight away as you don’t want to seem too pushy and the interviewer will probably bring it up anyway.

So, there’s a few things you can do before the interview to maximize your chances of success. But what should you do during the interview to make sure you impress the interviewers?

Let’s start with the first impression, as this is one of the most important aspects of any interview and it is very difficult to impress after a bad first impression. Get there on time and if you are running late let the interviewer know. You also want to dress appropriately. In my opinion you should dress like the person who does the job that you want to do in the future. Maybe you want to be a CEO, so dress like one. Looking smart isn’t going to work against you. The handshake is also an important moment in the interview. Give a good, solid handshake, make eye contact and smile. Don’t look at the ground or give a weak handshake as it creates an uncomfortable atmosphere.

Now, once you are in the interview room there are certain things that you want to do to increase your chances. As I have said there is no list of interview tips which you can follow so you are guaranteed a job. However, there are certain things which are essential in any interview which if you don’t do will probably result in you not getting a job.

  • Firstly, maintain eye contact and really listen. You want to respond to everything they are saying effectively.
  • Remember your plan. Pick up on opportunities to impress the interviewer. For example when the interviewer asks what you know about the company, show them that you have done the appropriate leg-work and make it relevant to you and how you would fit in.
  • Be positive. Everyone likes an upbeat person, someone who will get along with the team.

Finally, when closing the interview, end with a handshake and thank the interviewer(s) for their time.

I’m not going to tell you that if you follow this advice that you are going to succeed in your next interview. However, you can most certainly maximize your chances.

Good Luck!

For more tips on how to get employed check out our YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/TMIParis

Social media mistakes to avoid in your business

 

Some of my previous posts have been filled with positivity about using social media to benefit your business. This is quite simply because it can be a great marketing tool. BUT (and this is a big but) it is not a foolproof solution to improve your company’s marketing strategy. Often startups and existing companies make mistakes that can prove costly and in fact reduce the chances of success.

So, what should you avoid when setting up a social media strategy?

The most common (and probably worst) mistake you can make is failing to outline a plan for your social media strategy. So many startups just breeze past the planning stage without outlining any goals. You need to ascertain what you want to do, how you want to do it and what resources you will use. Without a detailed plan with clear business objectives you are setting yourself up to fail before you’ve even begun.

Within your plan you should be identifying when you are going to carry out the social media tasks that you’ve set. The second mistake a lot of companies make is going into social media overdrive straight away. This “too much, too soon” approach is likely to prove counter-productive. People don’t want to be overloaded with information every second of every day. It’s also important to recognize that you don’t have to be on every single social media site. Identifying which ones are relevant to your business (perhaps taking into account where your competitors are) will save you time and ultimately money.

I’m sure you are all aware of the phrase time is money, and it is important to spend time with social media to achieve worthwhile ROI. A lot of companies implement a social media strategy which can best be described as “if you build it people will come.” I’m afraid this is not the case. In the same way that building a shop and not putting a sign outside is unlikely to attract people, failure to promote yourself consistently online will not benefit you. Therefore the “set it and forget it” method should be avoided. Social media is all about relationships. It’s about networking and it is going to take time. However, if you are prepared to make the appropriate time investment to social media each day it will be worth it, if you spend your time correctly.

How you spend your time is key to your company’s success with social media. It must be understood that social media is not a one-way communication channel. You’re setting yourself up to fail if you think that you can just promote your company non-stop and not interact with customers and still succeed. We’ve come back to the importance of relationships and honestly it cannot be stressed enough. After all it is called social media. Failing to recognize this can result in complete failure; so don’t go out there and ignore your customers! Listening and responding can be the best way to lead your business to success.

It’s not only you’re customers you shouldn’t ignore though, it’s your competitors too. Keeping track of what your competitors are doing on social media and how they are doing it can be key to your survival in today’s market. Social media provides you with the gift of easily connecting with everyone around the world. This means it’s very easy to check up on your competitors. Visit their website, their Facebook and LinkedIn pages and most importantly check out their customer feedback. Knowing where your competitors are going wrong can prevent you making the same mistakes and help you achieve a competitive advantage.

Finally, it is essential that you are passionate in your social media marketing. Without passion you won’t succeed. If you feel that social media isn’t for you and you have the resources then hire someone who knows about social media so that they can help your company succeed. If you have someone running your social media operation that has genuine interest and passion for it then it will be well worth the money it takes to employ them.

The benefits of social media for business really can be incredible, but only if it is utilized in the proper way. If you implement a solid social media strategy and avoid the mistakes I’ve been talking about then I can promise that you won’t regret it.

Social media could revolutionize your company.

Using Social Media in your job search

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you will be aware that the job market has been a hot topic of discussion for a long time. The word “crisis” has been used on so many occasions in the media that, to an outsider reading the paper or watching the news, it would seem as if the world is ending. But I’m not going to discuss the reasons for that, or even talk about the problems with the economy, because let’s be honest it gets a little depressing after a while. Yes, the job market is tough right now and no there is no quick fix, no 5 steps which are guaranteed to get you a job. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s all doom and gloom and that there’s no hope. What it means is that you have to alter your approach to the job hunt or come at it from a different angle.

In my last post I discussed the benefits of companies using social media, two of which were particularly relevant to you as the job seeker. Now I have no doubt that most people reading this will have some form of social media presence, whether it be on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or wherever. Most of you will also have noticed that social media is now being used by companies all over the world.

So if you are sitting at home disheartened, wondering why no one’s offering you a job and you’re moaning to your friends on Facebook about how hard life is, you are missing a huge opportunity. You’re already on social media, you already actively use social networking sites but you’re ignoring the answer that’s right in front of you.

If you are a job seeker you have to use social media in your job search.

As a recruitment agency we use social media to enlarge our talent pool and ultimately make it easier to find the best candidates for our positions. If you don’t use social media how do you expect us to find you? No one is going to knock on your door and give you a job. You have to get out into the world and actively “hunt” for that job. Social media enables you to connect with people from all over the world at the click of a mouse.

You have to network, get your name out there, join discussions and grow connections. Take the initiative and be creative and if you see an opportunity, take it or I can almost guarantee you will regret it in the future.

Now I realize that me telling you, you need to be on social media is all well and good but without knowing what to do or how to do it then it’s pretty irrelevant. So, here is my advice for you to break into, and improve your professional social media and discover the world of “social business” with reference to my top 3 social media sites.

Firstly, if you’re not on LinkedIn, get yourself a profile. Get your CV on there and if possible get some recommendations so you’re selling yourself with proof. Remember to put a sensible profile picture up where you look professional i.e. not having a pint or you in on the beach. You can then connect with people you know, people they know and so on to maximize networking possibilities. Join groups of like-minded and relevant professionals and take part in discussions. Ultimately you want to generate relationships with people. Finally, don’t forget to update your status regularly, as you would on Facebook, and let people know you’re current situation. You never know; someone from your past or a new connection could provide you with an opportunity.

I’m going to assume that you use Facebook for connecting with friends at a personal level as most people do (including me). However, it can be an effective networking tool. Again, a status that lets people know your current situation might just mean someone will offer a helping hand. I would advise that you make sure you’re Facebook privacy settings only allow friends to see things you wouldn’t want an employer to see, or just make sure your Facebook puts you in a good light, as it is quite common for recruiters to use social media to assess a potential employee. Facebook has become more important for job seekers, with apps such as Branchout and Beknown. There is also a lot of talk at the moment hinting that Facebook itself may start allowing job postings and therefore is only going to become more important for your job search.

Finally, Twitter is a fantastic networking tool as it gives you the opportunity to connect with people you don’t know based on common interests. By following the right people you can have constant access to new job posts and opportunities more easily than any other social site.

Networking has always been one of the best ways of finding a job and with social media you can increase your networking opportunities globally. The truth is, in today’s society, finding a job is extremely difficult. But the job hunt becomes a lot more difficult if you neglect social media, and its influence is only going to increase.

So my advice to you is simple: Don’t miss out on the opportunity, get out there. Increase your chances of finding a job and get yourself networking professionally on social media. It may just be the best time investment you ever make.