As students go through college, they should be aware of one important fact. Employers expect college students to “prove” that they should be hired. Wise students keep this fact in mind and make certain that they can provide the proof that employers seek.
Employers are interested in five things:
1. What You Know - It should be obvious that employers will want to find out what students know. Grades are only part of that proof. Students learn by observing, reading, listening, doing and teaching. The best employers will ask about these five areas. Savvy students make certain that potential employers obtain the information they seek by showing them what they have learned, experienced and taught.
2. What You Can Do - Employers want to learn about student capabilities. They understand that knowing what to do is quite different from actually doing it successfully.
Generally, employers are interested in the student?s technical skills, communication skills and leadership skills. Students who possess these skills are seen as being more likely to maximize their contributions and advance within an organization.
3. Who You Are - There is another factor in which employers have an interest. The best employers prefer students with a great attitude and personality. They look for candidates whose personal values closely align with their corporate values. Additionally, these employers value candidates who regularly demonstrate a high degree of integrity. They seek students who are responsible, honest, hard working and trustworthy.
4. What You?ve Already Done - Employers believe that what students have done in the past is the best indicator of what they will do in the future. Therefore, employers will be interested in the student?s earlier accomplishments and positive results. Grades, work performance, participation in student activities and community involvement can be reliable indicators of future performance.
5. Compelling Proof - Unfortunately, employers have learned that they can?t always trust the information they receive from students. Employers want the kind of proof that they can check out and verify. Student successes can be supported by numbers, examples, stories, demonstrations, references, recommendations, testimonials, awards, commendations, newspaper articles and other forms of recognition. At work, successes can also be revealed in job descriptions, performance reviews, promotions and salary increases.
All of these things require students to be actively involved in the college experience, as they move from semester to semester. Few students will impress the best employers with grades alone. That?s because employers are looking for well rounded students who have previously demonstrated their personal traits, knowledge and capabilities in a way that has helped other people, organizations and employers. They hire students who can quickly contribute to the success of the organization.
When students anticipate the needs, wants and expectations of the best employers and aggressively pursue and accumulate job-related knowledge and experiences during the college years, they greatly increase their chances for employment success. It?s that knowledge and those experiences that will enable students to provide the kind of proof that the best employers expect.