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About this book

Written by experienced careers advisor Steve Rook, the new edition of this indispensable guide will help readers to develop the skills they need to land their dream job. It breaks the career planning process down into manageable steps, from researching roles and gaining work experience to crafting a stand-out CV and impressing at interview. It also includes practical guidance on networking, entrepreneurship and responding to job offers. Packed with reflective activities, top tips for successful applications and real life case studies, it contains everything students need to develop their skills, get their foot in the door and set themselves up for a fulfilling future.

This text will be core reading for students on a wide range of career-related and employability modules. It will also be an invaluable resource for students researching their career options independently.

Table of Contents

Chapter 0. Introduction

Help! Where do I start?
Abstract
Each year, the graduate employment market grows from strength to strength. Today, there are more opportunities than ever before, an ever-increasing diversity of roles, more flexible points of entry and fairer access.
Steve Rook

Careers in a Complex World

Frontmatter

Chapter 1. Graduate employment and recruitment

A world of opportunity, but you have to grab it!
Abstract
Each year, the graduate employment market grows from strength to strength. Today, there are more opportunities than ever before, an ever-increasing diversity of roles, more flexible points of entry and fairer access.
Steve Rook

Chapter 2. Career planning

Abstract
Career planning is about taking control of your professional journey.
Steve Rook

Finding Your Niche

Frontmatter

Chapter 3. Assessing your skills, interests and motivations

Abstract
The first step to finding a truly fulfilling career is to create a snapshot of your current skills, interests and motivations, i.e. what you’re good at, enjoy, and want from life.
Steve Rook

Chapter 4. Identifying your options

Abstract
Now you have a sound appreciation of your skills, interests and motivations, you’re ready to research your full range of career options.
Steve Rook

Chapter 5. Choosing a role

Abstract
Now you’ve identified some of your key skills, interests and motivations and created a shortlist of interesting occupations (see the previous two chapters), you can link the two together to come up with some potentially fulfilling careers, as shown in the Venn diagram below.
Steve Rook

Upping Your Game

Frontmatter

Chapter 6. Boosting your employability

Putting yourself in the best position to succeed
Abstract
The term ‘employability’ is a recent introduction to the English dictionary and it can therefore still mean different things to different people
Steve Rook

Chapter 7. Moving forward

Abstract
Now you have found a role/sector to enter, assessed the skills, commitment and knowledge required and considered how you can improve your employability, you’re ready to put together a plan of action to get your foot in the door.
Steve Rook

Making it Happen

Frontmatter

Chapter 8. Managing your networks and social media

Abstract
It’s always been important to know the right people, especially when it comes to finding work.
Steve Rook

Chapter 9. Experience and internships

Abstract
You need experience but don’t panic if you don’t have much to put on your CV, at this stage, because you can undertake any number of activities and work your way up the ladder.
Steve Rook

Chapter 10. Further study

Abstract
This chapter is designed to help you decide whether further study is right for you and plan your next steps accordingly.
Steve Rook

Chapter 11. Taking time out

Abstract
Time out can be another useful stepping stone on your way into a career because it can help you see all your options and fi nd perspective (at what can be such a confusing juncture in your life).
Steve Rook

Finding a Job

Frontmatter

Chapter 12. Searching for graduate jobs

Abstract
In the ‘good old days’, graduates tended to immediately enter a narrow band of clearly defined, skilled roles in areas such as medicine, banking and law.
Steve Rook

Chapter 13. Promoting yourself effectively

Abstract
Job applications shouldn’t be long, boring auto biographies of everything you’ve ever done in your life.
Steve Rook

Chapter 14. Targeting your CV

Abstract
CVs are your shop-window advertising, giving you a wonderful opportunity to quickly and effectively promote what you have to offer.
Steve Rook

Chapter 15. Tip-top application forms

Abstract
Employers started to use application forms because the CVs they were receiving were becoming more and more vague and untargeted.
Steve Rook

Chapter 16. Cover letters that open doors

Abstract
Cover letters are short introductions to your application that should whet the reader’s appetite and encourage them to delve deeper into your CVs and/or application forms.
Steve Rook

Chapter 17. Impressing at interviews

Abstract
If you have secured an interview, then give yourself a big pat on the back.
Steve Rook

Chapter 18. Psychometric tests

Abstract
Psychometric tests are examinations of your mental capacities and processes.
Steve Rook

Chapter 19. Succeeding at assessment centres

Abstract
Assessment centres are the venues where specific job assessments are carried out.
Steve Rook

Chapter 20. Dealing with job offers

Abstract
Sooner or later a job offer will land in your mailbox.
Steve Rook

An Introduction to Selfemployment

Frontmatter

Chapter 21. Becoming an entrepreneur

Abstract
The phrase ‘the gig economy’ was not around just a few years ago, but it has quickly gained traction as this sector steadily grows.
Steve Rook

Chapter 22. Getting your business started

Abstract
Once you’ve come up with some possible business ventures, it’s time to develop your ideas, test them and get going.
Steve Rook

Down the Line

Frontmatter

Chapter 23. Moving your career forward

Abstract
You can’t guarantee success but good things come to those who work hard, get on with colleagues and show enough enterprise.
Steve Rook

Chapter 24. Frequently asked questions

Abstract
Some of the more common problems faced by students and graduates are outlined below with advice on what you can do in each situation.
Steve Rook
Additional information