Mad Gay Skillz

Mad Gay Skillz: Landing a Job

Rumor has it homosexuals are gifted with certain abilities: An innate sense of design, the ability to know the hottest parties in town, a gift for knowing exactly the right relationship advice to give at the right time. Of course, this is total B.S. There are plenty of gays out there who don’t know the difference between Prada or Miu Miu, would rather watch The Sarah Conner Chronicles on a Friday night than go out and are totally out of touch with their inner-Oprah. Still, we have a rep to maintain and to help you out Queerty teaches you Mad Gay Skillz– your go-to guide for staying fabulous.

job-interviewWith unemployment at 8.5 percent, there are 13 million jobless Americans out there. You may be one of them. Fortunately, you have a leg up on a lot of your competitors—you’re gay! While being out at the office isn’t an option for many, that doesn’t mean you can’t reach into your homo bag o’ tricks for a little help. Here are some of our favorite techniques for landing your dream job, or even a job to weather out the storm.

Rely on family.

Most people come to a new city with no friends, but if you’re a gay or lesbian, you need only let a fellow gay know that you’re family and you’ll be in like Flynn. While rumors of the gay mafia are greatly exaggerated (or maybe we’re just being paid to not divulge the details), gays and lesbians have always known how to rely on the kindness of strangers and are often willing to help a brother or sister out. Reach out to your gay friends, let them know you’re looking for a job and, more so, what kind of job you’re looking for—they may just know a guy who knows a guy who may be able to help you. Employers are much more likely to give you the serious look you deserve when you come from a trusted source.

Take a queer eye to that resume.

Your resume really is your calling card and, for the most part, people send the message that they’re dull and boring, thinking that what employers look for is corporate-speak. Give your resume a makeover, not with scented paper or weird fonts (I found this format to be a winner), but by making your resume reflect you. Phrases like “Responsible for”, “experienced”, “team player” and “detail oriented” should be banned from your vitae. Instead, describe your job experience as if you were explaining it to your parents; be specific and say what you actually do. Also, another killer tip: You don’t wear the same outfit for every occasion; tailor your resume each time you send it out to the specific job you’re applying for.

Overdress for success.

Thankfully, casual Fridays have gone the way of The Backstreet Boys. No matter how small your job might be, dress as if you’re applying for vice-president. It sends the message that you take the potential job seriously and that you’re ambitious. If your job is in a creative field, wear a tie with some color in it, otherwise, stick to the traditional reds or blues, especially the very popular light blue made popular by Biden and Obama. A great suit will also help you feel confident, which will come off in the interview. If you’re not used to wearing one, consider giving it a dry run a week or so before, wearing it while you do errands and go around town; it’ll help build up your mojo.

Everyone wins when you’re versatile.

Many people don’t want to hear after losing their job that they should consider a change of careers. They just want to hop back on the same saddle they were on before and keep looking for the closest replacement they can find. Well, your old job is gone; no matter what you wind up doing, it will be something different. Chances are you didn’t love your old job, and with the economy likely to remain in the ditch for the foreseeable future, now’s a good a time as any to consider a new career. You’re not alone. The average American is likely to have seven different careers in their working life. Put another way, you should always be willing to try a new position.

Your interview is your first date.

Many would-be employees think the point of the interview is to impress the potential boss. It’s not. If you got the interview, the boss is already interested in you. Instead of trying to win over your potential employer, get to know them—and the job—instead. You should come prepared with at least five specific questions you have about the job. Not only will you be able to make a better decision about whether you really want the job, you will also be sending the message that you’re engaged in the work at hand.–Japhy Grant

What other tips do you have for landing a job? Let us know in the comments.