Halloween Do’s and Don’ts

Halloween Do’s and Don’ts

Remember the guy or girl on Halloween whose costume is a little TOO realistic? Like the guy who pulled off Leatherface from Texas Chainsaw a little too well, to the point where he scared the hell out of everyone and no one would go near him? Well, don’t be THAT person this year. Check out this article about the Do’s and Dont’s of dressing up for Halloween, especially at work.

HOW TO DRESS FOR A PROFESSIONAL INTERVIEW

“You know what the difference is between you and me? I make this look good” -J, Men In Black

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Will Smith delivers this notorious, albeit slightly narcissistic, line from the first installment of the Men In Black trilogy as his character J suits up for his first day on the job. With his all-black suit and killer sun glasses, his character is dressed to impress. How you look can have a serious impact on your chances of landing a job.  Here is a useful list by Alison Doyle from About.com about the do’s and dont’s of interview attire.

HOW TO DRESS FOR A PROFESSIONAL INTERVIEW

Men’s Interview Attire

  • Suit (solid color – navy or dark grey)

  • Long sleeve shirt (white or coordinated with the suit)

  • Belt

  • Tie

  • Dark socks, conservative leather shoes

  • Little or no jewelry

  • Neat, professional hairstyle

  • Limit the aftershave

Women’s Interview Attire

  • Suit (navy, black or dark grey)

  • The suit skirt should be long enough so you can sit down comfortably

  • Coordinated blouse

  • Conservative shoes

  • Limited jewelry (no dangling earrings or arms full of bracelets)

  • No jewelry is better than cheap jewelry

  • Professional hairstyle

  • Neutral pantyhose

  • Light make-up and perfume

  • Neatly manicured clean nails

What Not to Bring to the Interview

  • Gum

  • Cell phone

  • Ipod

  • Coffee or soda

  • If you have lots of piercings, leave some of your rings at home (earrings only, is a good rule)

  • Cover tattoos

Interview Attire Tips

  • Before you even think about going on an interview, make sure you have appropriate interview attire and everything fits correctly.

  • Get your clothes ready the night before, so you don’t have to spend time getting them ready on the day of the interview.

  • If your clothes are dry clean only, take them to the cleaners after an interview, so they are ready for next time.

  • Polish your shoes.

  • Bring a breath mint and use it before you enter the building.

Write For Lifehacker

Lifehacker, a productivity blog run by Gawker media, is looking for an Editorial Fellow. This is from their site:

A fellowship at Lifehacker means you’ll help us with our daily pursuits and hunting down the best tips and tricks for getting things done. More specifically, the fellow will learn to be a Jack- or Jill-of-all-trades, assisting us with research, post-finding, basic copy editing, emailing, social media tasks and, with some guidance, writing. Basically, you’ll get valuable experience in the skills needed at a site like Lifehacker that you can take with you to basically any writing/media job.

Lifehacker is a unique blog due to its diverse editorial content. This position is also paid (hourly) and could lead to future employment with the company. This position is also designed to give employees the skills to thrive in the blog/media world.

Check out the position on the Lifehacker website.

Finish Up Your LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn has grown in importance in the job search process  More and more recruiters are using the service to find out more about job applicants. Make sure your profile isn’t lacking any essential parts. Take a look at your profile and make sure you are not missing any of these things:

  • A professional looking headshot- Don’t use the same profile pic as on your Facebook. Use a photo where you can see your face clearly. Dress professionally.
  • Join groups- Join Boston University related groups, groups in your industry, and groups related to your interests. You have the ability to connect to professionals in the field, take advantage of it.
  • Have a succinct summary- Don’t use the word “aspiring” in your headline. Use “study” or “studying” instead (if you’re a student.)
  • Get recommendations- If you don’t like asking for a recommendation, take matters in to your own hands. Recommend a bunch of people, there’s a good chance a few of them will recommend you back. Who doesn’t like having good things said about themselves?
  • Put the good stuff first- Don’t hide the fact that you won a prestigious award at the bottom of your profile. You have the ability to arrange your profile in a way that you can’t on a resume.

LinkedIn profiles are quickly gaining in importance. Make sure you take advantage of it.

Asking the Right Questions During Job Interviews

A good way to demonstrate your interest in a job is to ask thought provoking questions during a job interview. Anyone can go in to a job interview, sit back, and just answer questions about themselves. However, it takes effort to be engaged and curious about a company. Taking the extra few minutes to come up some questions beforehand may pay off in the long run.

Here are a few primers to develop questions:

- Ask someone where they would like the company to be in five years. This could resonate more with small-business owners and start-up founders. They probably have a huge personal stake in their company and would love to talk about it.

- Look up some projects that the company worked on, if it’s applicable. Ask about how they tackled a certain story or handled an account. People like to talk about how they did things. Don’t  patronize by saying blanket statements like, “Your company is the leader in the industry.” Mentions specific examples of where the company excelled and ask about them.

- Don’t ask about salary, benefits or vacation. There is an appropriate time to ask about those issues, but the initial interview is not that time.

-“If the local paper were going to run a four-page article about your company’s culture, what would be impossible not to include?”  (I stole this one from The Ladders) I like this because it’s creative and it gives them a chance to highlight some unconventional aspects of the company.

- Ask about how people learn at the company. I learn best with a mentor or someone to help guide me. This could help you decide about the position later.

The key to asking good questions is to be specific and do your homework. Do not go into an interview empty handed.