1. Help Him Dress for Success
One of the best graduation presents you can give your child is a well tailored suit. Making a great first impression is just as important as researching the companies and being able to explain why you’re the best person for the job. Don’t worry if your child won’t take your fashion advice or won’t tolerate your opinions in the dressing room—gift cards for better department stores or finer traditional specialty stores are a great way to help your new graduate start his interviews off on the right foot.
2. Connect Her to an Expert
Sometimes it’s hard for a child to accept advice from a parent and, even if you have the best intentions, you can end up adding stress or creating tension for an already nervous job seeker. Instead, you can provide support by guidance and recommendations from willing friends, family, or even colleagues who are open to helping young graduates. If you have a friend who works in the industry your child is interested in, make the connection. Even if you don’t know someone in exactly the same industry, think about people you know who are in managerial or senior-level roles and how your child might benefit from their guidance and mentorship. While these contacts will likely have the same advice you would give, it will be better received when it doesn’t come directly from Mom or Dad. And you can reciprocate later when your contacts need the same support for their children or family members!
3. Discuss “Epic Fails”
A great way to subtly discuss what NOT to do in an interview is to add a dose of humor. If you recently experienced a horrible interview in your own job—you can casually mention what went wrong. Maybe the person you interviewed didn’t shake your hand or was dressed unprofessionally, and you can talk about how that really irritated someone on your team. Many movies and TV shows have great scenes that revolve around laughably horrible interviews and watching one of these together can be a fun way to subtly mention a few basic interview “do’s” and “don’ts.”
Contrary to the past few years, this holiday season is a great time to be in the job market. Recent reports from the Department of Labor indicate that companies are hiring and this is fantastic news for new college graduates. Helping your child dress the part, connect with other career professionals, and review basic interview etiquette are great ways to subtly make an impact and contribute to future career success.
Happy Job Hunting!
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