Balancing Act: Job Application/Interview Etiquette

Balancing Act: Job Application/Interview Etiquette

For the last two weeks I’ve been putting together my new résumé & several cover letters so I can start applying for jobs. I remember back when I first graduated from MSU I looked to my parents or online posts for help as far as what’s the proper etiquette for writing cover letters, résumés, & giving answers in interviews. Three years later I’m discovering etiquette for graphic design positions is totally different than that for fields outside of the “creative” industry.

I’m naturally an informal person, I don’t like to say “Dear Mrs. Jones, my name is Anna…,” I’d rather say something like “Hi Virginia, my name’s Anna…” because if we were to meet in person I most certainly wouldn’t talk like that and I’d hope they wouldn’t either. When you start off so formal, it gives the whole situation an awkward feeling like you can’t be yourself & I want a place to hire me for who I am.

I’ve been on the other side of the table during interviews, watching young (and less young 😉 ) designers come in. Some had way too much confidence, others not enough. I think the people who impressed me the most were those who confidently spoke about their work, yet were humble and had no difficulty holding a conversation.

All in all, what I suppose it comes down to is being confident in your work so you can comfortably talk about it and being confident in YOURSELF so you can give genuine answers & show your personality; cuz if you’re not a good fit it’s going to be awkward down the road, for everyone.

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