So you're looking to find a job, but you don't have much experience. You may be a student fresh out of school with a diploma in hand, or you might be switching gears in an attempt to liven up your career. No matter your intentions, there are strategies and tools at your disposal that can help you find success in your efforts.
U.S. News and World Report stressed that the first thing to do when starting the search is to stop for a second and relieve some stress, as you don't need to worry about meeting every qualification or meeting every expectation the job listing asks for. This isn't to say you should apply to any job you feel like, but rather that with a good presentation and a past history of success in other jobs, you can easily meet expectations. If a job asks for you to have a year of experience, a well-written cover letter can get you in the door even if you don't have the right type of work history.
This puts more emphasis on the cover letter, of course. That will be your primary tool that can help you overcome a relative lack of experience. It can't just be filler, rephrasing your resume or simply describing how you'd be a hard worker if hired. Instead, you should explain in strong language that you're perfect for the position and how your hiring can be beneficial for the company's future. If you're applying for a writing job, you should mention any awards you've won for past work, even if it was just in school. A sales position should involve an anecdote or example of how you've persuaded someone to accept what was initially a tough sell.
Finding the right position will go further than just writing a good cover letter. You'll want to walk a tightrope between a number of positions. One key example comes from meeting a balance between confidence and humility. If you're not confident you can succeed in a job, that will likely be reflected in a hiring manager's assessment of you. At the same time, if you're confident to the point of cockiness or naivety about your long-term prospects for success, that will show managers that you may not be right for the expectations the position will ask of you. Meeting a consistent medium between these points, where you show confidence in your ability yet humility about growing into the position, will be your best bet.
Another midway point you'll need to meet is to avoid pessimism, but to stay realistic all the same. You won't be able to land every job that you apply for - far from it - but at the same time, you also need to remember that the search will eventually end in success. It's important not to expect that success immediately, just as it's necessary to know it will come.
There are some ways that you can get more experience before you're called in for an interview. According to Mashable, conducting a one-way interview can help you gain perspective on your communication skills. It can also help you make sure your presentation and your efforts leave little to be desired.
Another way to gain experience is to seek out a local recruiting agency. It's likely that in discussing your intentions with a hiring expert there, you won't just be able to gain new insight on improving your application approaches, but it can also help you find a relevant contract job. This will help you bolster your resume with recent efforts and simultaneously give you a way to potentially earn your own full-time position.