The Magic Number

Wouldn’t it be great to have a little magic in our life and get all of the things we aspire to in the new year? Health, family, career… the list goes on. If you are a college student, do you wish you could just snap your fingers and have a fantastic internship or first job appear before you? I know many do.

While I can’t wave my magic wand and give you a great job, I can share advice about a magic number that can change the way you pursue your search, focus on opportunities, and speak to employers.

The magic number is 3.

In my work coaching students and seeing the expectations of the employers, the need to be clear and concise is one of the top priorities. Often you only have 30 minutes or less to articulate the skills you have and how you can add value to the employer. Three is the magic number because when you communicate with others, presenting your ideas or information in threes tends to be more interesting, more memorable, and more effective. This technique is highly successful, as it structures your conversation in a way that your interviewer can absorb, evaluate, and retain the information you deliver without being overdone. 

For 2017, here are three pieces of advice to students about how to use the Magic of 3:

  1. Know Your Skills – Decide on 3 skills that you are the most competent and skilled at. Make sure that you can explain and give an example of your experience with each skill you come up with from your past jobs/internships/volunteer positions. Write them down and practice reciting them, so you are ready for an interview or meeting.
  2. Create Your Network – Identify 3 people who have a job that you would like to have or learn more about. You can find these people through LinkedIn, University Alumni or family friends. Reach out and speak to them to learn more about their roles so you can better define the kind of job you want.
  3. Learn Something New – Pick 3 new things to learn or try that will help you in a career. It could be creating a LinkedIn profile or creating a blog about your interests. Join a club, volunteer to meet new people, or learn a new skill.

The goal is to keep it simple. It can be overwhelming with the thought of what you need to do to look for a job and compete with peers for opportunities. Start with 3 things to do and go from there.

In closing, I will share 3 things I will focus on in the coming year:

  1. Video blog/Facebook Live – I will introduce a new medium to my communication with students and parents.
  2. Podcast – I am planning some content to share on my own or partner podcasts.
  3. Group sessions – the great news is that Next Great Step is in demand and many students want to work with us. We may offer opportunities for more students to take advantage of our techniques…stay tuned.

If you grew up in the 70’s you will recall the famous Schoolhouse Rock song “3 Is A Magic Number”. The idea is not new but take a listen if you want to hear some inspiration. Click Here.

Wishing you a magical new year. Learn more at www.nextgreatstep.com.

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