Interview with Sohaib Hasan
Insight Middle East and Africa is delighted to speak to Sohaib Hasan, internationally renowned career coach and trusted advisor whose insights, recommendations and motivation are empowering talent in the UAE to unlock their true potential.
Sohaib, please tell us about yourself.
It often gets tricky for me where to begin from. Well, I am very passionate about helping people in their careers and most importantly the job seekers across the globe who face various challenges. Over the years, I have shared countless tips and tricks on LinkedIn regarding job searching, how to reach out to recruiters, ways to do follow ups, effective LinkedIn profiling, importance of personal branding in job search and much more. I still continue to share a lot on regular basis and also run my Telegram channel where my subscribers get the instant updates of my posts.
What advice could you give to the job seekers in the UAE?
UAE is an excellent market for expats to work. People from various geographical regions dream to work in the great UAE but the competition here is equally challenging. Here are some tips for the job seekers in the UAE:
- Build your own social currency for your benefit. Now when I say social currency, I mean your network (online asset) which you can leverage for job prospects
- Do not rush to send volume of job applications. Always focus on asking two things to yourself, (i) Do I meet the essential criteria for the job I am applying for (ii) Is the job really of my interest and that I wish to continue.
- I would encourage all job seekers to regularly make a follow up on job applications and chase them. Do not blindly submit resumes and shut the doors. Communication play a vital role in job searching.
How can they stay positive while looking for a job?
It is a very important question and also an integral part in the job searching. Surround yourself with positive people, whom you trust and can take advice from. You are here on job searching with a limited time, and certainly being sad, negative and worried will not work in your favor. Try to be more open, flexible and social. Attending networking events, meeting and greeiting new people is always enthralling which bring freshness to the mind and the day. Do not spend all hours of the day in front of the laptop, rather give yourself sometime out for exercise, site seeing, go on beach for swimming, visit malls etc. – a lot can be done in parallel to job searching. They can also stay positive by meeting their close friends, alumni and previous working colleagues who happen to work now in the UAE and sitting with them to learn from their experience. I am sure their stories and struggle will not only boost the morale but also give them a strong ray of hope.
We live in the exciting era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. How is the Fourth Industrial Revolution reinventing the future of the jobs? What are the top skills to develop in 2019?
It might be surprising but the Fourth Industrial Revolution seems to be the ultimate one. It has given the opportunity to almost everyone who has a little talent/ability can be an entrepreneur. The social media platforms have been an addiction and everyone is collaborating and finding new ways of earning and learning simultaneously. I believe this industrial revolution will give more boost to remote job opportunities and jobs which have an online scope will come more in demand.
In my opinion, top skills to develop in 2019 are:
- How to network and be more social
- How to create your own digital space and be known for (personal branding)
- Knowing how to communicate effectively and openly
- Being more people oriented and extrovert
How to write a resume that will get an interview?
In my opinion resume alone may not be sufficient but if you have an extra push to it will do the magic. However, it is equally important to write an effective resume and below are my suggestions:
- Write your visa status, driving license and language skills.
- Make sure to have a mix of various keywords relevant to your profession.
- Do not add graphics, logos and boxes if you are submitting your resume / job application through an ATS (Applicant Tracking System).
- A clean, elegant and simple resume which is enriched in content and is relevant to the job applied for does grab the attention of the recruiter/HR.
- People say your resume should not exceed more than three pages. I disagree. As long as you are justifying the pages and putting out the information in an appropriate way (which is not congested) it is fine.
- Make sure to proofread your resume for spelling mistakes.
What is needed to make a great LinkedIn profile?
LinkedIn gives you an all star if all sections of your profile are completed and this include picture, summary, education, experience, skills and endorsements to name a few. You can see your Star level on your profile dashboard (on the right side). Not only this that all sections are completed, also focus on:
- Adding keywords to your experience and summary
- Having a decent and professional headshot
- Increasing the number of connections
- Reaching out to people you have worked with to write a recommendation for you
- Being accessible to other members over LinkedIn. Do not just make profile for yourself. Be open to help others and support to create your own market space
How to interview well and feel comfortable in an interview? What are the signs that interview went well? What to do after the interview?
- To perform well in any interview the key is the preparation. And preparation would ask you to realize your strength for the job and the value you will be bringing to the organization. Also researching on the employer does come handy. Simply google for “common interview questions for Finance Manager” and you would get a list to prepare from. In addition to this, do not go for interview and force yourself to give an interview if you are unwell and doctor has advised you a bed rest. But you must reach out to the employer/HR and tell them about your condition asking if the interview can be rescheduled. Because this is a one time opportunity, do not let things become an excuse of your failure.
- How do we know that interview has went well, it is very situational and can be determined in a lot many ways. Sometimes a firm handshake with the closing comments from the interviewer would give you some hints. Often if they take an interest to hire you, they would give you some additional information about the company and its premises, or there might be a chance that they would ask you to submit your documents immediately for evaluation, these are few hints.
- After the interview has been finished, I usually suggest to make a follow up within 7 days to get to know your status in case you have not heard from the HR/employer. Of course, in some cases the HR would say we shall let you know by a certain date, so you need to wait until that date and if no response then follow up after 2-3 days from the date HR/employer said earlier to give feedback.
How to make a good first impression on the new job? What would you recommend to do to excel in your new job?
To make a good impression on the new job you have to be respectful. I believe respect covers all the elements of how to create and maintain the impression. One more thing, never compromise on dressing. Always dress professionally.
To excel in your job, in this era, learn the new tools and be more technically skilled. Another thing which will help you excel is your communication skills and how you build relations, so focus on it.
How can our readers stay updated on the job opportunities, career advice and motivation that you share?
I share frequently on LinkedIn and they can follow me there. Telegram is a handy mobile app where in my channel I share my posts’ link related to career, job searching and networking.
Feel free to follow them.
Telegram Channel: www.t.me/sohaibhasanofficial