The simple answer to this question is:
Rely on your CONFIDENCE over technical qualifications to launch you into the company of your dreams.
Now before you get all mad that this sounds like load of tosh, hear me out!
As a top-billing headhunter, I saw firsthand how thousands of people created their careers from the moment they graduated college to when they retired. The answer in any scenario to move forward when you don’t have enough “experience” is to SELL the crap out of yourself while playing the numbers game, hence the reliance on confidence.
What does that mean?
It means, first understanding that you have the power to influence your future. If you think that a company is “too good” for you, you’ll most likely find the interview process so intimidating, stressful, and uncomfortable that you’re negatively influencing your chances to interview well. When you’re worrying so much about the company brand name, you’re forgetting what really matters: the interviewer.
When you’re interviewing for a company, you’re really trying to impress the PEOPLE who work there. Microsoft isn’t going to hire you, SOMEONE who works at Microsoft will.
That individual will have their personal biases, communication style, and expectations, and THEREIN lies your opportunity to get a job at their company.
With this in mind, here are the basic steps of how to get a job in a good company even if you don’t have any experience:
- Identify a NUMBER of companies you’d like to work at. The more the better.
- Craft a simple resume that is grammatically correct and easy to understand. Here’s a free resume guide based on my format that I use for all of my candidates as a headhunter.
- Have your LinkedIn profile ready to go so employers can easily search your professional pedigree up til now. See mine as a reference.
- Apply the crap out of the companies with your resume, direct emails to managers, and also through the application system. If you’re a student, network very hard with the companies who come for career fairs; pass out your resume, grab their business cards, and follow up like crazy.
- When you have an interview opportunity, prepare to describe yourself professionally. Read this article for the best way to articulate your experience up to now.
- Slay the interview. That’s why personality aka confidence wins EVERY time. Here are a few tips on how to be likable to ANY interviewer.
Food for thought: How many times have you seen a friend or classmate (you think is totally incapable) land a job at a company that you admire? Probably more than you like, right?! It’s because they understood how to play the PEOPLE and NUMBERS game.
Don’t get lost in the hype, companies are run by humans; hack the human, hack the system (figuratively of course!).
I hope this article helps you to achieve further success in your life and career. If you like what I have to say, follow me on Quora!
This question originally appeared on Quora: How can you get a job in a good company if you don’t have any experience?