Some re­al­is­tic, un­re­al­is­tic ex­pec­ta­tions for a first job in­ter­view

The Denver Post - - BUSINESS - By Vicki Salemi

Mon­ster’s ca­reer ex­pert Vicki Salemi an­swers user ques­tions on We’re re­pub­lish­ing her an­swers here on a reg­u­lar ba­sis. If you have a ques­tion, email so­cial­me­dia@mon­

Q. What are some re­al­is­tic and un­re­al­is­tic ex­pec­ta­tions of first­time job seek­ers?

A. First and fore­most, it’s re­al­is­tic to ex­pect a com­pre­hen­sive job de­scrip­tion. If you’re pur­su­ing a job that sounds vague, ask for de­tails about it and po­litely push them to send an up­dated de­scrip­tion be­fore you in­ter­view.

An­other re­al­is­tic ex­pec­ta­tion is that em­ploy­ers will want you to talk about your re­sume. You may think, “Don’t they al­ready have this in­for­ma­tion in front of them?” Yes, but your re­sume serves as a ve­hi­cle to land you the in­ter­view. Your com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills and how you speak about your ex­pe­ri­ence, skills and in­ter­ests, as well as your en­thu­si­asm, will keep that door open.

It’s also re­al­is­tic to feel frus­trated or im­pa­tient. Job searches are marathons, not sprints.

It’s un­re­al­is­tic to think you’ll ap­ply for a job, in­ter­view and re­ceive an of­fer in a week. That’s why you should pur­sue sev­eral jobs at once. An­other un­re­al­is­tic ex­pec­ta­tion is to think you’ll ne­go­ti­ate a huge salary in­crease for your job of­fer. When I worked in re­cruit­ing, it was al­ways awe­some to see first-time job seek­ers ne­go­ti­ate their first job of­fer. If a salary in­crease was ap­proved, it wasn’t for a large amount of money. Should you ne­go­ti­ate ev­ery job of­fer? Def­i­nitely. Will you land a $10,000 bump your first job? Prob­a­bly not.

Fi­nally, if you’re net­work­ing, it’s un­re­al­is­tic to think you’ll get any­where by sim­ply say­ing you are look­ing for an en­try-level job. You need to be spe­cific. Say some­thing like, “I’m look­ing for an en­try-level job in mar­ket­ing or PR in the NYC area.” You get more trac­tion by be­ing more spe­cific.

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