Imperial College London Entrance

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**Its time for the Obligatory Job Post**

The Dream Job. The Holy Grail. The Light at the end of a tunnel wallpapered with aptitude tests, CV drafts and endless iterations of the question “When have you worked well in a team?”. Whatever creative name you choose, there are three classic tips needed to maximise chances of crossing the finish line with a personal best. (finish line= getting a job, personal best= maximum earning potential)*.

  1. Start Early. I’ve heard this one so much the words have stopped meaning anything. However, the reasoning is threefold:
  • There are less applications to compete with, so you will get to interview quicker if hiring is done on a rolling basis. (Apparently the saying goes: there is always someone better than you. You want to get the job whilst they’re still asleep).
  • If you get rejected, there are still other schemes open, and you have the practice of past applications fresh in your mind, It’s literally like squeezing two hiring cycles out of one.
  • Your Masters will only get more demanding, especially in the run up to January exams. ESB hopefuls, make use of only having one module in September!

However, my advice is NOT to choose an early application over a good application. It is to once in a while, choose an early application over an early night.

  1. Don’t be overly selective. Of course everyone wants the Golden Goose, and I have complete faith that you can achieve it. But there are underrated arguments for spreading the net wide, namely the following:
  • Peace of mind. Ten applications feels a lot more comforting than two. 
  • Practicing writing covering letters, and developing your skills in applications. This also applies to numerical tests and interviews.
  • You might, through your application research, find something you like as much as your original goal. It might turn out that you like wooden geese as much as Golden ones.

However, I am not saying you should apply for investment banking if you want to become a marketer. But if you don’t like a company because of their end-of-year review policy, maybe swing them an application anyway.

  1. Keep Sane. Kind of a washy one to end on, but it’s the one I wish I’d listened to the most. Nothing boosts the ego and destroys the soul quite like the Job Hunt, so make sure you remain level-headed, perhaps by doing the following:
  • Take regular breaks, to remind yourself that you are not a walking corpse with a sign around your neck saying “hire me.”
  • Share with people on your course, who are all going through the same thing. Much like peer-to-peer lending, peer-to-peer therapy works.
  • Think of the process as a way to learn and develop, and write down lessons at each stage. That way every experience becomes valuable.

*Disclaimer: The author understands that monetary gains are not the primary motivation for a job, but made a simplifying assumption for the purposes of humour.

Naila is studying our MSc Economics & Strategy for Business programme.

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