One of the most exciting milestones in a teenager’s career is landing that first job. Though exciting, securing a job can be daunting, especially if you have no prior experience.
Many teens have asked the question: "How can I get a job if I have no experience and employers wants someone who has experience?"
There is a lot you can learn from the experiences of other teens like yourself. Here is a list of advice, tips and lessons from bloggers and teens to give you the inside scoop on how to get that first job.
Before you apply, create a list of potential positions that appeal to you or companies that you are interested in. Groovejob.com recommends you prioritize jobs from your highest to lowest interest. Also, you can evaluate companies based on the benefits offered, such as tuition reimbursement, as these benefits can help support your future growth.
Next, assemble a resume. Even if you have no work experience, putting together a resume is an opportunity to showcase your suitability for the organization. You can highlight your strengths, and your accomplishments and leverage these to show your capability to perform the job.
There are a variety of ways to apply for a job. Some companies at GPO hand out applications or provide a web link to submit a resume. Other companies release job advertisements which can be distributed by schools.
This was the case for Brianna Carpo, 16, an Okkodo High School junior.
She applied to an ad for volunteers at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. The hotel was seeking volunteers in different areas during the holiday season. She was interviewed for a culinary position by the executive chef.
Some businesses provide online applications.
Guam Community College sophomore Ken Bautista used this method when he was a teen. He applied for a position through Regal Theater’s website.
The dreaded interview
First-time interviews can be intimidating. However, with a little planning and practice, it can be smooth and simple.
Alison Boyle of thebalancecareers.com stated that taking an inventory of your strengths beforehand and showing up early are the two critical elements for a successful interview.
At a job interview, first impressions matter. How you present yourself conveys your attitude towards the job. Amy Morin, a psychologist from verywellfamily.com shares, “even if the interview is at a fast-food chain or a place that provides a uniform for the job, appearance matters.”
Exuding confidence, positive energy and excitement are selling points for interviewers.
Carpo expressed that you not only have to show your proficient skills but also your passion.
"Show them that you are not only capable to perform the job you’re applying for, but that you are also passionate about the work,” she said.
Working as a young teen
Okkodo High School senior Brayven Chase, 18, said whatever the job, you have to work at striking a balance between work, school and free time for yourself.
“Working at a young age is a great way to get money and to gain experience that will be helpful in the future. Being a busy teen with clubs, school and sports, time management and the mindset to finish throughout your day are essential to balancing a great job either as a teen or a college student,” Chase said.
Bautista encourages teens to find some sort of part-time job.
“It will teach you how to work with others, how to work under pressure, time management, discipline, and responsibility," he said.
Your working life
The job hunt can be tough. If your personal network runs dry with potential jobs, you must remain persistent and patient. To be a successful employee, while simultaneously building character and skillsets for future jobs, it is key that you learn from your mistakes, take advice and listen to constructive criticism.
Also, you will need to remain unphased by rejection, and most importantly, as Carpo states, “everyone has a passion in life. For teens that are starting out, it’s best to get a job that revolves around your passion.”