How to Ace it Without Experience

How to Ace it Without Experience Image

The thought of having little to no experience in this competitive world can be a bit daunting. Whether you are a fresher with almost no experience, or someone who has just started late, when you hear stories about how experience has helped people move upward in the career ladder, it can feel like you are falling behind. There’s always a way up. Read on.

There are other things you can do to compensate for your lack of experience. So, keep the following pointers in mind as you go about constructing your CV and preparing for interviews.



One obvious thing is networking. Keep in touch with your professors and peers, and make your job-hunting status clear.

But make sure you don’t lean excessively on peers for advice: after all, they are your peers, and some of them might be in a similar situation.

Instead, talk to the older people. They might have some tips for you. You can interact with them and let them know what your vision is like. Remember, if you feel there seems to be a generation gap in how they look at it, you can still listen and give things a thought.

One major bonus of networking with older, experienced people is that you never know, they might even give your reference to someone important!

Remember, merit is one of the things that can help you land a job. Networking and a good solid reference is another.


The Case About Learning and Development:

You may not have experience, but you can always keep learning new skills.

See what technological tool’s knowledge can help you boost your potential, and get on to learning more about it.

Depending on your field, it is always a good idea to attend relevant seminars, webinars, workshops. You might also get an extra certificate to boast about!

List those “skills” (or at least that you are learning) and you will make a strong case that you are willing to learn and constantly increase your skill-set.


When the Unpaid Experience will finally pay:

If you think you don’t have that much experience, think again! Listing out unpaid experience is not a bad idea at all.

You can always talk about the relevant experience you may have in volunteering at community level, event management, logistical experience at college level, any major research you may have undertaken for your thesis, etc.

Say, you are interested in Marketing, but you don’t have experience. That doesn’t mean you can’t mention the fact that you were on the marketing team during one of your college fests, and how you handled it.



Research and Ace The Interview:

You can use the interview or the interaction to leverage some gains.

For the interview and other interactions to be the thing that boosts your confidence, you need to have that kind of knowledge, you need to have things to say, you need to be able to hold a conversation about the field/industry. And for that to happen, you need to research.

Research on what is going on in the industry. Research what is going on in the company if possible.  Research on what is going on in any related disciplines. Find the relevant journals, books, magazines, blogs, websites, podcasts, videos about your field and keep yourself updated.

When you know stuff, you will have stuff to talk about, and that in turn, would fuel your confidence. Just because you haven’t had the practical experience yet, it doesn’t mean you can’t strengthen your knowledge in theory.


Getting a call for an interview is in itself a positive sign: you sent your CV and now the prospective employers are willing to give you a chance! On the other hand, if you haven’t received the call yet, fret not, and keep your search and research on!

Do You Need A Resume Or A CV?



You are done with your education, and you now feel ready to take on the  world of work.

Or you are just planning to get back to working after that much needed  sabbatical.

Your little one now goes to school and you finally feel you have enough time to rejoin the office after years.

BUT… there’s always a BUT, isn’t it?

The companies ask for a CV. You see the menacingly familiar word ‘resume’ all over the place. You have no idea how to go about creating it. You vaguely remember learning to create something like that in school, but that was years ago! Feeling overwhelmed to some extent is natural but that  shouldn’t drag you down, right? Especially right at the supposedly first step.


Preparing a resume and/or a CV (yes, the two are a bit different: we will get  to it soon) could be a daunting task for many. After all, to a great extent  “it  gives you away.”

So, here is a little guide as to what all you should look out for and what all you could include while making a CV.


First things first, let us get our concepts clear! Earlier there used to be a huge difference between a CV and a resume. But now the only difference is essentially of the length. Both include a summary of your work experience and education; only, the resume is ideally supposed to be just a page long. A  CV, short for  ‘curriculum vitae’  could be a little more detailed, with two or  three pages.


‘Resumes’ are used in the United States, Canada and Australia. CVs are  used everywhere in the world including the UK, New Zealand, Asia and the  European Union.

If this is a bit too complicated to understand, the good news is that the two terms are used in an interchangeable manner in India, New Zealand and South Africa.  You could now just focus on creating a CV and tweak it according to the country where you have applied.  (Source)

Now, let us get to creating one!

You need to list down your skills, that is, your key expertise. These are what the recruiters would screen through.

Your work experience needs to be added. You begin with the latest, then the one before, then the one before (you get the drill, right?) and right up  to your first job.


You also include your work tenure. You have to be particular here:include not just the duration but the years of joining and quitting. Make sure to include the location. Basically, where on Earth have you been when you were at this job?

Also, if you have had a particularly short stint at a role or you have had to change jobs too frequently, include your reasons. You don’t want to come  off as a job hopper to the recruiters! Make sure to convey your reliability  this way so that there is no fear that you would suddenly quit or stop  showing up at work.


You have to include your job responsibility. What all you handle at your  current job/ what did you handle at your previous job. Make sure to write  only your responsibilities and not blindly copy-paste the ones you might  come across from sampled CVs.

Essentially, you subtly sell and market yourself. It is a job “market” after  all.


You continue the self selling and the marketing and list down your educational qualifications. You write down your degree, the institution where you did  your degree from, the year you finished your degree.


You include your contact details: your name, very very obviously, but it’s always a good idea to check such a seemingly basic thing. Your E-Mail I.D, contact number, address, Skype I.D  have to be there.

Your age, and date of birth are important because certain jobs do have age limits.


The subtle self-marketing continues as you list down the languages you know.


You tell your prospective employers what a well-rounded personality you have as you list down your other skills, and your interest areas.

It is important that you are honest. Do not copy and paste. Imagine if everyone copied and pasted a few samples. Every other CV would end up looking the same. We certainly don’t want that, do we? A personalised CV is a lot more attractive.


Check, double check, triple check your spellings, punctuation and grammar. You may or may not be applying for the job of a proof-reader but you must use that skill for scanning though your own CV. Ask your trusted friends and family to go over the document. An external observer could spot mistakes you might have overlooked.

Check the layout. Make sure it looks professional and tidy. Imagine your reaction if you were the employer and a CV such as yours came to you.

The format should be that of Word and PDF. Provide the necessary links and URLs.


Draft and re-draft your CV if needed.


Once you have got a hang of it, and if you want to notch it up a bit, you could check out the concept of video-resumes. They directly showcase your communication skills, personality and your overall presentation. Although you must make sure that they are accepted where you are planning to apply.

Video or no video, using a neat photograph of yours accompanying your CV  is a good idea.


Lastly, what not to do: if you don’t have some essential job requirements, you shouldn’t apply. You could be under-qualified or over-qualified for the role. Besides this fact, in case some of your experience matched very well to the job role, then you may apply stating this fact , and highlighting it. Here, you do the self marketing and selling a little loudly and clearly.

Do not list completely unrelated skills. The skills you talk about on your CV should always be relevant to the role you are applying for. This is where tailoring comes in. For every role you should ensure you are highlighting the skills it requires and remove any completely irrelevant skills or experience.


It is always a good idea to research online as you go on creating your CV. Make sure you create something original. Use the samples just as samples.

Again, try to use your imagination and see if you would be pleased as an employer/recruiter if you received a CV such as yours.


Good luck!