SELF MOTIVATED

HOW I SECURED MY NEW JOB + 5 TIPS TO HELP YOU CRUSH YOUR INTERVIEW

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6 months, 37 back and forth LinkedIn messages, and 51 back and forth emails. (Yes, I definitely went back and counted every single message from the start.) This was the timeframe from when I first inquired/applied for the position that I just secured with my new company. The 51st email was the offer for my new Social Media Coordinator position! Let me give you a quick little backstory. I’ve worked in the Luxury Retail industry for one of the world’s most renowned leading brands LVMH for nearly four years. I’ve gained so much adequate knowledge and have made many valuable connections along the way. I am absolutely grateful for where I’ve come from, and even more proud of all of the hard work that got to me where I am now. PERSEVERANCE is my favorite P-word, RELENTLESS is my favorite R-word, and COURAGEOUS is my favorite C-word. I started looking for a new position because I felt at this point in my life, it was meant to be. I have always had a strong interest in the web, creative fields, social media, blogging, and creative directing. When I came across the open positions at my new company, I knew for a fact that I belonged there. This was a sign from God telling me this is it - you got this, Meghan. I just couldn’t believe that I transitioned into a career like this right here in my own backyard of Houston. A couple of years ago, I always had it in my mind that I would have to move to LA for a career like this one. Fortunately, I have been blessed to start my new endeavor here. In the process, I was even told NO not once, but TWICE. But that did not stop me. In this post I will be sharing with you some helpful tips on how I prepared myself for my interviews, and how you can also prepare yourself to crush your next upcoming interviews. Hint: it has to do with the 3 words that I mentioned earlier...

  1. LinkedIn is Your Friend

Before we get into tips for after you’ve landed your appointment for your interview, I wanted to share that I discovered my new job through LinkedIn on my own. I was actually surprised at how many people I talked to said they never really use it. “How did you hear about that job?” LinkedIn.. “Did they reach out to you?” No, I reached out to them on LinkedIn. Y’all, you must realize how resourceful you can be on your own. One thing that I love about LinkedIn is that you can connect with anyone of any position within the company you are interested in. You can connect with the talent recruiter, HR person, hiring manager, and even someone within the same role as you are hoping to get into. For example - I connected with and messaged people that already worked for the company, picked their brain about their experiences, and kindly asked them to pass my information/resume along to the hiring manager. Needless to say, everyone that I contacted was so nice and actually responded back to me. You won’t get a response from every single person that you reach out to, and that’s okay you just have to keep doing your research and find other contacts. I’m sure you already know this, but make sure to keep your profile updated with your current position, experiences, achievements, and of course a decent profile pic!

2. Have a Killer Resume

I can’t stress enough at how important it is to have your resume on point. I’m constantly updating my resume just for the sake of it. Most importantly, I highly highly highly recommend ONLY using resume paper for your resume. At my former job when I’d see people dropping off their resume on regular computer paper (sometimes creased), I cringed a little on the inside. You should always keep your resume short and to the point. Mine is ONE page and I’d rate it a 10! Include only the most key and relevant information. This helps the recruiter/interviewer quickly learn about you, and understand how you would potentially fit into the role that you are showing interest in and/or interviewing for. More often than just sharing your duties like ex.) “Assisted management with filing data” you should solely focus on the proven metrics that you have accomplished and brought to the table. How much revenue did you bring in last year? Did you win Presidents Club? Did you receive any type of award/appreciation certificate? Put that on your resume! Employers really want to see what you have done in the past, and they want to see what you can do for their company if they decide to bring you on. Always have more than one copies with you, and bring a portfolio of your work (depending on the type of position) if it entails.

3. Sell Yourself

You got the interview locked in, now what?! Preparation and focus. Trying to switch careers is most certainly another job within itself. I did a lot of studying and research about the brand and the industry, which helped me understand exactly what they were looking for in the perfect candidate. When you’re truly passionate about the role that you’re trying to fulfill, it shows. I made sure that I knew exactly what the job description was, and made sure that I could confidently sell myself and nail it. Since I interviewed for a more creative position (Editor), I actually printed out two of my blog posts to show my creativity and to show who I am as a creative. I knew for a fact that was something that not every candidate thought of doing, so I wanted to step outside of the box. It turned out to be a great idea! That was sort of like my personal “portfolio.” Check this out, in my second (and last) interview I met directly with the CEO and she asked me to see my Instagram. Inside, I was like “yasssss, here you go!” I pulled up my IG page and handed her my phone. She scrolled, complimented, asked about certain photos, and even mentioned that I had great engagement on my posts (this was great because relevant small talk is a really good sign). But could you imagine if I had something to hide that I would have been embarrassed about? I probably would not have gotten the job. This was a proud moment for me because of who I truly am as a person. I love my feed! It isn’t perfect, but it’s me. Prior to this, she asked if I had a separate IG page for my blog and personal. You guys know I don’t, but a lot of you do! My tip is: If you have a personal life that may not be a great idea to show your future employer, then you should definitely keep that separate because you never know what kind of situation you could be in. Not saying you shouldn’t be who you are - but be mindful about what you put out because a lot of the times when they are considering hiring you, they are probably searching for you on social media to see who you are outside of that building. I have never been asked that in an interview, but I was ready.

4. Have a Strong Follow Up Game

Sending that follow up and thank you email before and after your interview is so vitally important! This shows that you have no problem with being consistent, and keeps you on the top of the hiring manager’s list without them forgetting about you. You always want to send a follow up email confirming your interview, etc, and you most certainly want to send a thank you email within a couple hours after your initial interview. Most people say send a thank you email within 24-48 hours, but I think that sending it within at least 2 hours after your interview shows that you are serious about staying in contact with them. That will probably assure that you stay on the top of their minds and list when closely considering candidates for the role. When I told you that I was told no during the process, I sent a respectful email asking why, and that is what got me the job I wanted after all. Giving up was not an option for me! In my interview, one of the directors mentioned to me that she liked the way that I was always sending nice follow up emails. She said because she had been in my situation too, and she knew that it was not easy getting into the door. I recently mentioned this follow up technique to a friend who had been waiting to hear back from a company that she interviewed for, and it worked for her, too! I told her - you can’t apply and not send follow up emails. This is like letting your application float out in the milky way galaxy with no destination, just thin air. As many applicants that are applying for the same role as you, you have to stand out. Otherwise, you will probably just get skipped over because you aren’t really putting yourself out there for them to recognize you. From the time I got confirmation for my 2nd interview, to the the time it actually took place was about 3 weeks. The hiring manager was going out of town and even though I was confident, I still wanted to keep my own buzz in their ears about me while she was away. Don’t aggressively overdo it to where you annoy them, but just know how to be consistent in a graceful way. Like I said, these are some things that worked for me. We will all have different experiences with this. You can always reach out to me if you don’t know what to say! I’d be happy to help.

5. Be Relentless, Have Patience, & Perseverance

Oh, and of course be courageous! Earlier I mentioned that it took me 6 months to secure my new position. This is starting from the beginning, when I sent the very first LinkedIn message to my now colleague about passing along my information to the hiring manager after I applied. It takes courage to be vulnerable and reach out to people you don’t know for help. This just shows that you are relentless, resourceful, and will set you apart from the other candidates. It just has to come naturally and requires a strong will. I personally have a strong mind, and when I want something - I will do my best to get it. The outcome of success depends mainly on your willingness to persevere and be persistent. I also practiced “manifestation” regularly - and I still do. This means so focusing deeply on what you want, to where you picture yourself having/doing it until it becomes a reality. Can’t forget to mention, lots of praying. This is personal for me. Throughout the whole process of me securing this new position, I had to keep reminding myself that what is meant to be will be. I did my best work and I did my part. The rest, I left up to God to figure out how he wanted this to work for me. My patience was tested, and I won’t lie, I let my light dim a little. I would come home after work and have a pity party because things weren’t unfolding quickly enough. With my support system, I was reminded of all the things that I’m trying to tell you now. Practice patience. Control what YOU can control. That’s all you can do.

I really hope that you found this helpful! I know that it was pretty lengthy, but I truly do believe that all of this is valuable information that will help you in your process, since it has helped me. We won’t have the exact same interview experiences and results, but I can guarantee you that some of these tips will have proven results. I still don’t feel like I shared everything that I wanted to, so I’m thinking about doing a part 2 to this. What do you think?

Shop My Look:

*me kicking my goals in the butt*

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NEW YEAR, NEW THOUGHTS...KINDA

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WOW, I can't believe that it's already the year 2018. Someone wake me up. 2017 came and went so quickly and it didn't wait for anybody, honey. Am I right? Last year for me was definitely full of growth, some testing times, and true self-evaluations. One of my best highlights was when I relaunched my brainchild - Style For Breakfast (after being stuck in a slump about it for a whole year) and was so happy after I did. It felt damn good. There were quite a few people that have stuck with me from the beginning even when I wasn't blogging at the time who were giving so much positive feedback. Thank you all for your support - always! When a new year comes, everyone wants to hit reset, refresh, and have a few New Years Resolutions. That's all normal.

The title of this post is called "New Year, New Thoughts...Kinda" for a reason. Yes, it is a time when you can start over with a clean slate and somewhat prepare yourselves (things you can control) for the next coming months/year. Although, it is good to take a step back monthly to see how things are coming along and if you need to make any adjustments to reach whatever your goals may be. I try to do this throughout the year, not just at one particular time of the year. We all get stuck or have a few road blocks at some point and that my friend, is going to happen. Because, life. There are a ton of ideas that popped in my head when I thought about what all I wanted to make happen this year. Some new, and some the same from last year. Last year, I kind of let my situations take control without me taking control of my situations. This caused a lot of self-doubt and unwanted energy - from myself. I learned to nip that in the bud real quick. My mindset is still the same, I just have new things that I want to accomplish this year. That being said, here are 5 ideas to help you take over 2018.

1. Declutter 

If you really want to start the year of fresh, it is a great idea to declutter your space. Your home, workspace, and even your mind. If you have a closet full of things that you no longer wear, pass them along to someone who could use them. Clean out your dresser and throw away the old junk that you haven't touched in forever. Have some quiet time alone. Decluttering can also be cutting out toxic things or relationships from your life. A clean space means a clean slate. 

2. Do One Thing Each Day That You Keep Putting Off

I know you've heard the phrase; "Do something today that your future self will thank you for." What's that one thing that you know you need to do, but never really get around to making it happen because you don't have the "time" or you just always put it on the back burner? Go ahead and do it. It could be the simplest thing like taking your dog for a walk after you've been at work all day (I'm guilty of it but getting better) to what may seems like one of the most difficult things such as - taking that first step to starting a new project. Believe me, each day that one step closer to whatever is it will become a huge payoff for you in some way. Make time for what you want. Go home from your regular day job (that can squeeze the life out of you if you let it) and hustle your dreams. 

3. Create a Vision Board 

They actually do work, y'all! I'm telling you. Have you ever decided that you wanted something - could be anything (like a new particular car) and all of a sudden you start seeing them everywhere around you, on commercials, and on the roads? Your visions can become your reality if you believe that they will, and if you put them where you can see it everyday. I made a vision board before that actually came to past. I truly believe in them. And God. You can have anything you want if you just figure out what you have to do to be able to get it. Putting what you want out into the universe, changes everrrryything. 

4. Travel More

I will forever be fond of traveling because it widens your horizons and overall perspective on things. I don't want to get older and say I wish I had traveled more. I'm pretty sure you don't want that either. To really live is to see and experience new things. Traveling can lead to so many opportunities that you probably couldn't even imagine at this very second. You might get inspired to move to a different country that you've only visited once or twice. You never know who or what can make an impact on your life when you open your mind to freedom. I want to see things that I have never seen before. I want to go to all those beautiful places that I always see on National Geographic and all the travel channels. Boy, if I had Anthony Bourdain's job. But just think about it, there is a whole universe out there that is waiting to be discovered. Traveling is learning. 

5. Be Yourself, Unapologetically

Ever struggled with worrying about what other people will think of you in some way if you do this, that, and the other? *raises hand* Yep, I did too. Who hasn't before? I promise you will be so much more attractive if you just be your own true self without constantly looking for approval from others. I used to think like: "oh, let me not post this because my face looks weird" or "let me not share something amazing that just happened to me because I don't want to seem like I'm bragging" Yeah, screw all that! If you just passed an exam you better shout it out loud so the world can hear how freaking amazing you are. Don't spend time playing the comparison game either because you're going to find yourself in non-healthy place emotionally. Everyone has their own different timings. Your skin is the way it is because it was meant for one person - you. 

 

Thanks so much for reading! I really appreciate you for taking the time to just to click on this post. If you have anything that you would like to see from me, please let me know in the comments! I've only been back to blogging for a few months now and can't wait to see where Style For Breakfast will go this year. Thanks for being on this ride with me. I want to know, what do you plan on conquering this year? Best of luck, and wishing you a healthy 2018!

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