Written by Caitlin V., Internal Recruiter for Freedom Financial Network
At Freedom Financial, one of our core values is “Get Better” and embracing this value creates an environment of self-improvement, learning from our mistakes, and using what we learn to grow. One way we foster internal mobility and career growth is allowing employees to apply for a new position within the company after only 90 days. We consider internal talent first and we encourage employees to strive toward their ultimate career and personal goals.
I began my journey with Freedom in Customer Service but after some time, I decided to explore other options. I applied for a Recruiting Assistant job that had just been posted. I was thrilled to be selected for the position and I spent a year assisting a brilliant team of recruiters who taught me so much that I was promoted into a recruiter role myself. I am appreciative to have found a career I am truly passionate about.
Because of my gratitude for Freedom’s growth culture, I became an Internal Recruiter and Career Counselor. I recruit for positions that are exclusively available to current employees. I also offer counseling for employees who want to discuss their growth options, resume writing, or interviewing.
Although everyone’s ideal career path is different and each employee has a diverse skillset and experience, here is some of the most common advice that I provide to our employees working toward career advancement.
Ensure that you have mastered your current position
The best way to prove you are ready for a new challenge is to excel in your current job. Hiring managers will often seek references or proof of your success. Keep copies of scorecards or feedback about your performance and reliability so you can share or highlight these in your interview and on your resume. If someone is struggling in their current role it can be difficult for a manager to consider giving that person a new challenge.
Share your interest with your leadership team
Most of our employees have consistent coaching sessions with leadership. This is the perfect platform to discuss your performance and areas of opportunity. You can also use these sessions to talk about career goals. Most leaders can offer advice or recommendations for how to achieve your goals. They may even assign you special projects or leadership tasks that you can add to your resume.
Research the positions you are interested in
I highly recommend learning all you can about a position before you apply. Read the full job description and think of ways you can prove that you meet the requirements. Think of situations when you have used the skillsets mentioned in the job description. In some cases, your supervisor might be able to help you set up a side-by-side with someone who is currently in that position. This is a great way to see the work up close and ask questions about why that person enjoys their job or what their biggest challenges are.
Brush up on interview skills
Some of the most challenging interview questions are behavioral-based questions. These questions will ask you to tell the interview about a time that you used a certain skillset or came up against a particular challenge. The interviewer wants to hear about a specific situation from a current or previous job. The best way to answer these questions is to use the S.T.A.R method:
*S= Situation: Describe the situation you were in or the request you received.
*T= Task: What was the goal or what was being asked of you?
*A= Action: Describe the actions you took in order to reach the goal or complete the request.
*R= Result: What was the outcome? How did it end? Was the customer/leader satisfied and how could you tell? What did you learn?
Taking the leap toward a new career can be exciting as well as nerve-wracking. Following these guidelines should take some of the guess work out of your development pathway. The thought and work you put into your career search and the interview process will tell you more about yourself and whether you can see yourself succeed in a new area of the business or, possibly, a whole new industry.