Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Job Hunting Workshop in BISU- Bilar Campus

March 14, 11:00 am, Friday. Right after checking out from the Bohol Tropics Resort where I emceed the highlight of DU EK SAM INC.’s annual national business conference, I was whisked off to Bilar some 40 kilometers from the city of Tagbilaran

Your Blogger talking to the graduating students
It was to honor a commitment with the graduating class of Bohol Island State University (BISU) Bilar Campus. Along with labor expert Gerry Guidaben, I was invited to facilitate a two- day workshop on Job Hunting. 

I was assigned with the topic “How to Apply for a Job” which I broke down into three sub- topics:

a)      The Application Letter
b)     The Resume
c)      The Interview


The Welcome Streamer
Aside from discussing the rules & guidelines for business correspondence, practical tips on how to make their application letters stand out, how to get considered for an interview and new trends in the business world were also shared 

As a former Business English Correspondence mentor for college students, I stressed the importance of the following:

-                    The letter has to attract & impress the reader
-                    Writer should observe the rules on grammar
-                    Writer should observe clarity, conciseness & courtesy
-                    Research for the correct names, positions & designations

Practical tips like adopting the Full Block Style & the Picture Frame Principle were shared with the students


I explained to the graduating students that the resume is a piece of paper (usually one- three pages in length) that details who they are and what they’ve accomplished in life so far.

It is a selling tool that outlines their skills and experiences so an employer can see at a glance, how they can contribute to the employer’s workplace. The most effective resumes are clearly focused on a specific job title & addresses the requirements stated for the position

Most job applicants make the common mistake of preparing the same resume for five or more job openings. Do not commit the same mistake. I reminded them to make sure to customize their resume to fit the culture of the company. Highlight core competencies that they might find useful and valuable.

They have to get hold of the company’s brochures or annual reports because they frequently talk about the company’s vision, mission, strategies, and organizational structure. Find a match between the skills and competencies they have to offer and align them with the job opening and the company’s goals

With regards the career objectives, be realistic. In an attempt to impress, applicants sometimes write down a lot of career goals and plans. This can backfire and make it appear that the applicant only knows a little of everything but doesn’t really have an area of expertise.

State both short- term and long- term plans including plans for higher education. In a nutshell, the career objective must show the applicant’s clear sense of purpose

Additional tip: Be sure character references know the applicant and that the applicant has asked for the references’ permission. Make sure the names are spelled right.


The interview aims to select the final choices from among the short- listed applicants based on how these applicants conduct themselves and how they tackle and hurdle the final interview questions.

1. It probes for competencies demonstrated in the applicant’s past experiences

2. It ascertains the applicant’s attitude about themselves, towards their work and their views on life. It asks about personal vision

3. It aims to know if the applicant can articulate or communicate the added value they will bring to the job if they’re hired 


We also tackled the most commonly asked job interview questions and how to answer them. I told them that at the end of the day, they have to be candid and honest and be themselves and not to be too rehearsed. 

Luck plays a role in the hiring process as well


Practical tips on how to stretch and extend a limited number of corporate wear, grooming habits to avoid and making that great positive first impression were also discussed


Overall, it was a productive two- day activity for the 400 plus graduating students. I was extremely delighted with the college seniors for they really participated in the activities. Their eagerness and enthusiasm made the whole trip to Bilar worthwhile and gave me a sense of fulfillment.
Ma'am Sharine Signe & Sir John Gudmalin
Your Blogger with the Organizing Committee
Kudos to the BISU staff led by for the enrichment session that would surely prove to be invaluable when these new graduates line up for job openings


Thank you to Ma'am Sharine Signe BISU- Bilar Campus Guidance Counselor, Sir John Gudmalin BISU- Bilar Campus School Nurse who facilitated my presence, to Ms Charity Jaya, Graduating Class 2014 President and to Dr, Arnulfo C. Olandria, School Director

After I bade farewell to the organizers & the student leaders, I silently prayed for their success when they finally step out into the real world

Congratulations Class of 2014!

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