Applying for a Creative Job:  5 Moves That Make an Impact

Fresh off from college? Looking into changing careers? Pursuing a more creative path?x

When you are setting your sights on a career in any of the different creative fields, then you have to make sure you stand out.

Shine Brighter

When you want to pursue a career in any of the creative fields, then you have to know that it is a tough turf out there. There are so many creative minds in the universe all competing for a slice of the creative pie. When you want to stand out in the sea of competition, then you have to be ready to do what you can.

Let your creative juices flow and think of how to successfully catch the attention of your future employer. You also need to strategize well and map out your direction so are better equipped to deal with the fiercely competitive landscape.

Here are some moves that you can make to have a positive impact and land your dream job:

1. Be Prepared

One has to be properly armed when going to war.

There simply are too many fresh graduates and creative minds out there, all bursting with inspired ideas. It doesn’t matter how artistically brilliant you are when you and your thoughts are all over the place.

Employers look for people who have a good grasp of what they want, starting with how they present themselves on paper and in person. With this in mind, make sure that youprepare your application papers well:

  • Write an awesome cover letter. Don’t just go for the run-of-the-mill types.
  • Give short and snappy reasons why you are perfect for the job.
  • Check your spelling and grammar.
  • Remember to look for the specific name of the person you’re sending the letter to. Never just use the generic “sir” or “madam”.
  • Make it a habit to look up the company that you want to apply to. Learn about the company culture and get ideas on how they go about their business. This will give you insights into what may be useful during your interview.

Taking care to apply the above tips will help ensure you stand out from the very beginning.

2. Perfect your Portfolio

Put your best foot forward.

Only show the most creative and absolute best body of workin your portfolio. Learn how to polish and prune your collection. Some new grads make the mistake of bombarding the employers with a range of their work. It is better to carefully curate and include your most breathtaking ones than risk overwhelming the job recruiters with too many.

Employers will be swamped with hundreds of portfolios so make sure to just include about eight to a dozen items. This way, they will have more time to pore over your work without being burdened of leafing through pages of your previous projects.

Make sure toinclude personal projects.This will show them your own creative stamp. You can put in work you made when you were volunteering or perhaps pieces you entered into a competition. Stellar submissions to a blog, a publication, or other entity that show off your inner creative genius will also make you stand out.

3. Promote Yourself

Network, network, network.

No time to be a creative hermit. In this fast and furious world, you need to hustle up andmake meaningful connections.

Put yourself in the best light possible. Take advantage of your graduation shows and network with possible employers. Attend events, gallery openings, shows, and other such situations where you can hand your business card and make a good impression.

Also, don’t neglect your curriculum vitae (CV). When listing down your previous work experience, avoid using the usual “responsible for” or “managed” to describe what you did. Even if they are active words, they don’t really describe how you were an asset to a company. Instead,use “success” words — words that say “increased”, “exceeded” or “achieved” show how you have successfully contributed to the betterment of the company.

Promote yourself online and offline. Make use of technology but also don’t forget to forge friendships. These will go a long way when you are navigating the creative world.

4. Ace the Interview

When your killer cover letter and perfect portfolio have done their jobs, then you need to also ace the interview to seal the deal.

  • Make use of what you have learned during your preparations.Who are their clients? What are their core businesses? What products do they carry? These will give you valuable insights that will allow you to expound (but do not drone on and on) when asked. Do not just give yes or no answers and never just give them a blank stare when you don’t know the answer. You can always find a creative reply without lying.
  • Do not be afraid to ask some questions, too. This will give them the impression that you are also interested in the company that you are looking to be a part of. Be inquisitive but not nosy.
  • Dress appropriatelyas well. When you researched into the company culture, then you could have gleaned if they dress in traditional office garb or are more informal in their attire. If unsure, then a quick call to the HR department won’t hurt.

5. Maximize Professional Help

Do not be afraid to seek professional assistance.

You know that you are competing with the best of the best. Any help from seasoned professionals will surely be to your advantage. Look for a recruitment agency that has years of experience in matching top talent with top-notch companies.

With the unparalleled expertise and network of your recruitment partner, you can be assured that you will be matched properly to the right job. Culture fit is a vital component in ensuring long-term and productive employment relationships so it is crucial for you to make sure that you are paired with the right recruitment organisation as well.

Here’s to a Long, Fruitful Journey!

When you make sure that you follow the above-mentioned steps in making an impact, then you have a bigger chance of clinching that creative job you want. Don’t just blend in. Stand out by making sure you are confident and well-prepared.

With the help of your research, your network connections, professional help, and sheer hard work and determination, you can look forward to a bright future in the creative universe.


David Mackenzie, recruitment professional with over 20 years’ experience in the field and a record of entrepreneurial accomplishment, is Managing Director and Head of HR at Mackenzie Jones. As the Group MD, David is responsible for the overall direction of the Mackenzie Jones Group, including Mackenzie Jones, MumsAtWork, MENA Solutions, Simply Digital and ThinkTech.