Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Top 10 Places To Find Summer Work

With the Job Seekers Guide to Twitter still in production, we thought we'd lighten things up a little with a practical list of places you may or may not have thought of for work!

It may start simple, but so should you. If simple isn't enough, well, I've broken it down pretty thoroughly towards the end!

10) Your parents & immediate family - wait what? Yes indeed. Your parents. They aren't just cash cows who live to wait on and serve you. There may have been times in the past when you went to work with your mom or dad for a day, for a bit of resume experience or just a fun day out. I'm not talking about this type of work. I'm talking about approaching your parents or family maturely with a reasoned proposal as to why they should consider paying you to work with them. You may well be surprised with the outcome. Approach them maturely, explain to them your situation and tell them you are willing to work as hard, if not harder, than any of their other work colleagues. If necessary, offer to work the first day or so free so they can see you are serious about it.

9) Your neighbors - again you're immediate reaction may be "Come on, get real". But I am being real, very real. You'd be very surprised the response you may receive if you approach the people from your neighborhood as a mature adult and present yourself correctly. I'm not talking about offering to mow their lawn or wash their car for cash in the summer, I'm suggesting you ask them if there's any way you can help them with out their job whilst explaining to them you are prepared to work your butt off at the same time.

8) Your friendsthe same principle applies here as with your neighbors and family. Though you know what they say - never mix business and friendship. This may well turn out a very good response, but bear in mind the ramifications if you turn out to be unreliable or slack off - if you pursue this course of action, make sure you're prepared to work hard, or deal with the consequences it may yield for your friendship!

7) Your school/college/university -  for college and university especially, you'd be surprised how many of the workforce comprises current or past students. Your college has a bar? Great ask behind the bar and hand in a resume, or if you're friends with a member of the bar staff? Even better - get them to recommend you. Fast food place on campus? Ask them. Library? Ask them. Shops, every academic-school on campus, sports facilities, campus accommodation, admin positions? Ask them. You get the gist - ask everywhere that is manned by people, you'll be surprised believe me.    

6) Your local areaa lot of people from experience will generally only ask at their local corner store, then decide there's no work. Again, you don't ask - you don't get. Ask at the corner store, the pharmacy, any paper routes, any fast food vans, any fast food restaurants, any local businessmen in the area. Everywhere.

5) Fast-food in general - A little cliche? Maybe. But it's a fact. Fast-food restaurants generally employ a high volume of staff and tend to have a high turnover - they are constantly losing and gaining staff. You've probably thought about a ton of places in the back of your mind you know you could probably find work, but didn't want to as you were holding out for something better. Everybody does it. You're not the only one. However, if you wan't a job and you want money - get over to every fast food joint and restaurant/cafe in town with a resume tailored to the fast-food industry and a can-do attitude.

4) Retail stores Very similar to fast-food chains, large retail stores employ a large number of staff, generally students in College city's/towns. They also have a high turn-over. This includes everything from Hollister & Urban Outfitters to Primark and Macys. Ask everywhere. I mean everywhere. Go up and down your local high-street and here's what you do. Approach the store counter and you say: "Hiya, I was just wondering if you guys were hiring at all at the moment?" It's as easy as that. You'll receive one of several responses, generally something like this. "Hey! Umm I'm not sure, let me just check with the manager" or "Hey, Umm I'm not sure, you could hand over a C.V/resume though just in case?". If possible, make sure you talk to the manager or a member of the management team. Just say "Oh o.k, would it be possible to have a quick word with the manager?" - a lot of the time if you hand in a resume to the shop-floor staff it won't reach anybody and nothing will come of it. Asking to speak to the manager shows initiative and forward thinking.

3) Bars & nightclubs - the staple employment of students everywhere. The places you love to go and spend your money, then wake up in their side alley with no memory of the night before. The best time to ask them for work? Mid-day.

A lot of these places will be open during the day, doubling up as cafe's or chilled out spots to hang out and grab a bite. However, if not, make an effort to go on a hunt and catch the other ones that aren't before they start getting busy - they generally open around 4-6pm and don't get busy until 7 or 8 at the earliest. Now bear in mind you're applying to bars and nightclubs here, don't walk in wearing a suit and tie - go smart casual, jeans and a cool t-shirt is your best bet.

2) Job aggregation sites - these have taken off massively in the last 5 years and dependent on where you live, they will differ - though they are easy to locate and use.

For the U.K - you're talking about sites such as,, Reed, Milkround and by far the most important for students - your University Employability portal if you have one.

In the USA there are heaps - USAJobs, Jobsboom, TopUSAJobs, and 
for starters.

Some of these sites require you to register, which you should do in full. Think of it as an investment. Put a whole day aside if necessary and create a detailed profile across all the top job sites for your location.

And to stay ahead of the curve - TweetMyJobs - is a must. More and more employers are finding quality employees through social media today. Take the time to register with TMJ and spend a few hours searching through and experimenting with it - there'll be more on this in the Job Seekers Guide to Twitter Part 2!

1) Google - by far your best resource is still good ol Google, combined with some initiative of course. But I'll break it down for you anyway.

Let's say for example you're looking for part time retail work, here's what you do.

*Step 1*

- Head over to Google
- Search for part-time work in (your location)
- Voila, the first 5-10 pages at least will be full of heaps of stuff.

*Step 2* 
-Nothing good popped up? O.k
- Take a pen and paper. Now, write down every single shop you've ever seen/heard of. Take 10 minutes, really think about it, ask your parents, friends, family as-well.
- Go through the list, typing each into Google like so
- 'Work at Mcdonalds (your location). If this doesn't work, simply: 'McDonalds *your location*'.
- This will provide you with the stores location, address, telephone number and in most cases email.
- Now, send your retail based c.v to their email with a cover letter, or ring them inquiring as to whether they have work at the moment.

*Step 3*
-Still not enough?
- Apply the methodology from above to Twitter using the tips from the Job Seekers Guide to Twitter Part One.

Anything I missed you'd like to add? Let me know!

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