CDAA Career Development Professional
Defence Recognized Service Provider
Certified Professional Resume Writer
Australian Veteran Owned Business

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Five Essential Elements to Winning a Job

Winning a job requires five elements executed with precision (in this order)

Finding the jobs:

  • There is no greater way to find a new job than through networking.  Whether it’s in the mining sector or the hustle and bustle of the CBD, finding a new job through a personal referral is still the number one way of gaining employment.  Get your networking shoes on and let it be known you are in the market for a new job.  Be creative in finding opportunities (without burning bridges). There are physical networking events to attend to “work the room”.  This is not everyone’s style.  But get on websites like Linked-In Facebook and follow companies that employ people like you, connect with like-minded professionals and get involved with discussions to showcase your knowledge and expertise.  You don’t need to have the answer to every discussion, just get involved and add value to the discussion.  People will then look at your profile to check you out in more detail.  Word of note here – you must have a good Linked-In Profile to make it work for you.
  • Go on an information gathering exercise!  By this I mean ring organisations and ask them for generic advice on what certain jobs are like, what salary ranges certain jobs attract and what the culture of the place is like.  Be careful not to try and back-door any formal processes of applying for a specific job.  Keep your questions generic and just information gathering.  You never know where a good conversation like this can lead.  Before making the call, make sure you have some understanding of how you are going to talk about yourself, if you get asked to tell them a little about you.
  • Keep an eye on job boards, like, etc and you’ll also find a good range of jobs on Linked-In.  Rule of thumb – if the jobs come to you easily (through Seek, Newspaper, etc) loads of people will apply.  If you have to do a lot of digging around to find a job, less people will apply.


  • Your written application needs to be targeted toward the job you’re applying for.  This is because of the volumes of applicants in today’s job market.  The person who does the first cull or applications will give your application 30 seconds to see if you are worth reading later on in full (that’s about half a page).  If in that 30 seconds, they can’t see how you meet their needs, your application goes in the “no” pile, regardless of how well suited to the job you are.  Click the picture here to watch this video which explains it in more detail.  
  • Selection Criteria for Government positions is demanding not only of your time, but also your knowledge of what the reader wants to see.  There are many books to buy on how to address selection criteria, so don’t take this process lightly, or you’re very likely to be disappointed in the results of your hard work.


  • Do your research to know about the organisation – in depth (Company website, Google, Linked-In, ASX, Facebook, etc)
  • Know about you.  While this sounds simple, it is the hardest to master because:
    • Your compete story is far to long and irrelevant to say it all at a job interview, so you must cull it. (der! I hear you say)  But you must know what to say about you so that the listener hears your story the way you want it heard (in our case, translate all words to a non-military language), then tell only those stories, achievements and answers that the interviewer will be interested in.  In other words, don’t do preparation and use it for all job interviews, only to then tell the same stories to every employer. 
    • To get it right, you must know/understand what the interviewer will be interested in and then learn to tell your stories with impact that will impress them.  This is how you get yourself to top of the order of merit list. Interviewers get bored very quickly, so keep your stories interesting and most importantly relevant.
  • Know all your transferable skills, to show you have what they are looking for, but also many of the other skills you have built up over your career.  Done properly, everyone should have at least 100 commercially sought after skills.
  • Know how to answer the question “Tell me how much money you want to do this job”, without underselling yourself or pricing yourself out of the market.
  • Prepare your Referees to work for you by helping them to help you.


Having the right attitude is a major factor when employers are making a decision about your cultural fit.  It’s not always easy, but if you can interview showing these traits, you’ll stand a much better chance.

  • Be confident, but not boastful or arrogant (know how to promote yourself)
  • Be humble and know you still have lots to learn (this can send a very powerful message)
  • Be respectful of the people and the organisation you are applying to (through what you wear, your timeliness, your first impression, your body language and how you approach them after the interview.


  • It’s great to get professional help in writing an cracker application to boost you up the rankings, but beware!  The reader will have formed a profile of you and is expecting this person they have read about to walk in the door at the interview.  You need to be that person.  So the rule of thumb here is, if you get professional help to write your application, don’t have anyone use language that you wouldn’t or can’t use yourself. 
  • There are people out there who move from job to job because they are poor at keeping a job, but are great at performing at job interviews.  Remember, you are competing with these people!
  • The good thing is that all of the above is achievable and within your control.  You can’t control someone else convincing an employer to hire them over you.  All you can do is put your best foot forward in the areas above and if you do, very quickly will you find yourself in paid employment.

Yes, we can help you with all of the above.

Call us now on 1300 366 104, or email

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