Cover Letter

Gen Z Job Search: The Years Of Experience Myth

Young Gen Z professional feels hopeful during her job search
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I've heard many of my Gen Z members and followers talk about how difficult it is to apply for jobs when every company seems to require two or more years of experience for entry-level positions, the types of jobs Gen Z, the youngest demographic in the workforce, shouldn't have any problems getting.


The idea that you can't apply for a job that requires "years of experience" because you're a new grad is a myth, and I'm going to tell you exactly what to do instead.

You Don't Necessarily Need Years Of Experience, But You Do Need A Connection Story. 

@j.t.odonnell Replying to @millers0620 Gen Z Job Search Episode 1: The Years Of Experience MYTH #genzjobsearch ##genzjobs #genz #jobsearchtips #jobs #job #jobsearch ♬ original sound - J.T. O'Donnell

First, I want you to understand the reason they say a job requires "two years of experience" is that they want to make sure you've worked at some point in your life. Hopefully, you've had an internship, maybe in college or while you were in grad school, but you do have some sort of work experience.

The second thing you need to know is that you have a secret weapon, and it's called your connection story. What you lack in experience you can make up for with enthusiasm and by sharing how you feel motivated to work for a company.

So, how do you write a connection story?

Step 1: Ask yourself, "Why do I respect and admire this company?" and "What taught me that they were worthy of this respect and admiration?"

Step 2: Think about your own life. What's making you feel connected to them as an employer?

Step 3: Put your connection story together in a disruptive cover letter. Unlike a traditional cover letter, a disruptive cover letter is a storytelling cover letter.

Step 4: Once you've written your disruptive cover letter, reach out to the recruiter, hiring manager, and/or people who work at the company and say...

"Hey, enclosed is the story of why I feel so connected to your company. I'd love to learn what it might take to earn the opportunity to interview or be considered for the XYZ position."

When you say there's a story, that piques their interest. And when you say you want to earn the opportunity, you don't have to point out that you don't have the exact experience. What you're trying to do is to get them to see that you have the intrinsic motivation to do the job.

They can teach you the experience. What they need is somebody who understands why they want to work there. That's what they're looking for, and that's what you need to share with them.

I see this every single day. In fact, I'll tell you a story.

I worked with a young man named Seth. He was a senior in college. He wanted to get a job in recruiting. It required five years of experience. But with this technique, he shared his connection story with the recruiters that were recruiting for the position. And he got the job. He beat out people who had 10 years of experience. And the reason he won the job is because of that connection story. They clearly understood that he wanted to be a recruiter and he was able to say, "Look, I have no bad habits. You can mold me, you can train me, and I'm passionate about this."

You can do the same thing. But it starts with understanding what your connection story is and then sharing it with those employers.

If you want more information or if you want to be coached on this, we can help you.

Check out our free daily newsletter or become a member and get access to affordable, on-demand career coaching.

Good luck, and go get 'em.

Man on laptop enjoys summer while working full time
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There you are: sitting on the beach, covered in sunscreen, reading your favorite book, drinking your favorite drink under the cool shade of an umbrella. Life doesn't get any better than this. Suddenly, a door slams, a phone rings, a printer turns on. You jolt back into consciousness. You're at work, sitting in your cubicle, without even a hint of sunshine streaming in from outside.

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