Keys to a Successful Job Search

By Mary Blake
Senior Manager, Career Services
Jewish Community Services’

Did you know that the current unemployment rate for teens ages 16 to 19 is 23.7 percent?  These days, working is a necessity for many teens but they lack the tools they need to advance their job search. How can these inexperienced job seekers get ahead?

Most teens have never been coached in vital skills like how or where to look for a job, complete an application, write an effective resume and cover letter, network, complete applications, utilize social media in a job search, and the best ways to interview and follow-up, explains Deborah Weksberg, Career Coach of Jewish Community Services (JCS)

When looking for a job, Weksberg recommends the following tips for teens:

Resume writing
Create a resume for each job description that is tailored to the specific job requirements and “translate” your skills. For example, if you were the soccer team captain, your leadership skills may be pressed into service as anything from a shift leader at Appleby’s to a mother’s helper “leading” five children through their recreational paces.

Networking
Post your job search goal on your Facebook page, and ask your “friends” to refer you to their employers or let you know who is hiring. Post your resume as well, so a “friend” could show it to a parent who is an employer, for example.

Interviewing
Have questions prepared for the interviewer about the business or the job – questions that are not about vacation or salary. For example, “What is the greatest challenge in this job?”

A discouraged teenage job seeker is more likely to grow up to become a discouraged adult worker with a greater risk of being underpaid and even unemployed. To help teens in their job search, JCS Career Services has launched “Keys to a Successful Job Search,” an exciting new program designed specifically for teens ages 14-19, in collaboration with JOIN for Teens. “Keys to a Successful Job Search” can help younger job seekers succeed today and develop skills that will last throughout their lifetime.

Keys to a Successful Job Search” offers practical advice on the important skills that will help young adults find and maintain employment in this challenging economy and beyond. Professional JCS Career Coaches will facilitate workshops at various dates, times and locations from October 2012 through March 2013. Teens can mix and match to choose a menu convenient for them.

Thanks to a generous grant from the Grandchildren of Harvey M. and Lyn P. Meyerhoff Philanthropic Fund, all of these programs are free. Participants are simply asked to pre-register. (Click here for the complete schedule of workshops.)

In addition, there will be opportunities to meet personally with a Career Coach, and to connect with potential employers through Job Fairs and JCS Job Developers, who establish and maintain relationships with local employers.

For more information, email Deborah Weksberg, Career Coach, or call 410-843-7437.

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