Fresh Grads on the Hunt


Professional Advice on Landing a Job

By Hilary Diack


Landing a coveted job is all about making the right impression by showcasing your skills and potential in the right way. Cairo East Magazine chatted with Alex Krikor Tcherasson, SPHR, HR consultant, to get his advice for new graduates.

CWM: What are the key points to consider when seeking employment?

AT: The four points to consider when applying for a job vacancy:

1. CV preparation

2. Before the interview

3. During the interview

4. Employment offer

What are common mistakes people make when compiling their C.V.? What should they include and what should they avoid?

A well-prepared CV, comprised of 2 pages maximum, will attract a potential employer’s attention and it should contain the following:

­Personal details (name, phone number and e-mail address)

­Business objectives and aspirations (2 – 4 lines)

­Technical skills if any (summer training for example)

­Personal qualities (abilities)

­Achievements (social activities, sport activities etc.)



­Avoid long colorful decorated CVs

­Avoid copying CVs from the Internet

­Use bullets and short sentences

­ Use Arial or Universe font, size 12

­ Focus on your strengths and qualities as a human being

How can candidates make the right impression in a job interview?

Before the interview:

Read about the employer.  Being knowledgeable about the business you are trying to join gives an excellent impression

­Dress appropriately (preferably formal), be well groomed

­Arrive 10 – 15 minutes before the interview time

­Bring additional copies of your CV, they might be needed

­Bring copies of any documents that might help during the interview (certificates of training, awards etc.)

During the interview:

­Enter the interview room confidently

­Don’t cross your arms or legs

­Listen carefully with no interruption

­If you are asked to introduce yourself, make it in less than 2 minutes.  Focus on your studies and business objectives

­Never answer a question you don’t understand.

­Say that you don’t know if you have no answer; it shows professionalism

­Make your statements short and clear

­Always maintain eye contact in a relaxed manner

­Ask about the potential for acquiring new skills and career path in the company

­Ask about the next step


Don’t ask about the salary at this stage.  If they volunteer to tell you, then it is ok to discuss it

What qualities does an HR manager usually look for when meeting a potential employee?

The focus is usually on knowledge and mainly abilities such as communication, creativity and customer orientation. Taking this into consideration helps job seekers when preparing for an interview

What are the most important things to keep in mind when considering a new job?

Most job seekers don’t really know how employers evaluate them when applying for a vacancy which opens the door for irrelevant interpretations when rejected.  Employers focus on finding a candidate profile that should match the vacancy competency model.

If your application is successful the following points should be discussed before signing an employment offer/contract:

Position title

Start date

Offered salary

Contract type (annual, temp, open…)


Other requirements

Armed with a positive attitude and a will to work hard you should now be on the path to a rewarding career.

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