Most people look back on their early job hunting experiences with fondness. As for me, let’s just say my first job hunting experience wasn’t so much a hunt as it was a casual wander into the backwoods of business, searching for remnants of employment – a job scavenge, really. 

As a new college graduate with no career preparation or planning, I interviewed for a marketing position at a dental products manufacturer (clearly the perfect job for someone who had grown up with a fear of visiting the dentist). To my surprise, the interviewer started asking me several questions about my job hunt. Before long, he could tell that I had put in little to no effort to secure the job of my dreams (or in this case, my nightmares). After a few minutes of listening to me babble on about why I was the perfect candidate, the interviewer leaned across the table and simply said, “Let me know when you find what you’re looking for.”

With that, the interview was over. The opportunity lost. Though painful, this experience taught me several valuable lessons about the importance of the job hunt; lessons that eventually helped me to secure a successful career. So whether you’re a recent graduate out on the prowl, or suddenly find yourself back in the game, remember these five things while you’re looking for a job:

  1. Evaluate Your Strengths – One of the great things about a business degree is that it offers a world of job opportunities. From financial management to accounting to, yes, dental products marketing, business careers are among the most varied of any employment field. Therefore, it’s important to know your strengths and narrow your job search accordingly. An honest strengths evaluation can help to direct your focus, for example, toward a career in brand management, sales or advertising.
  2. Find a Fit – No one wants to be stuck in a dead end job. Once you’ve discovered your strengths, look for companies and positions that fit what you’re looking for. Decide what you want out of a job and what you can do without, and stay true to your plan. You and your employer will be better for it in the long run.
  3. Take Advantage of the Alumni Association –The David Eccles School of Business has a vast alumni network of business