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Setting Yourself Apart from the Best: 5 tips

  • Article by:Health Career Center

You’ve been searching and searching, and finally, it happens: you find the ideal job for you.

You’re practically a shoo-in for the position. Sure, there will be dozens of candidates vying for the same spot, but your combination of experience and expertise makes you a perfect fit.

There’s just one problem: even after you pass by all the other candidates, that still leaves one or two people who are also a perfect fit. Now the question is, what makes you better than them?

Career counselor Caris Thetford set out to answer that question in a recent article on The Muse. Here are 5 of her tips for distancing yourself from the field — even when other candidates are just as qualified as you are.


  1. Instead of a cover letter, write a “pain letter”

The typical cover letter merely highlights a few of the more important aspects of your job experience. And while that’s important, there are more effective ways to go about showing you’re the right person for the job.

A “pain letter” points out a specific challenge facing the company and how you’ll fix it. This not only allows you to share your experience as you would in a cover letter — it also shows that you’ve done your research on the company, know how to apply it, and will hit the ground running on day one.

  1. Make a friend on the inside

Connecting with a recruiter is vital to landing any job, but don’t stop there. Send your information to someone influential at the organization (like the person who will be your manager if you’re hired).

Personal references are one of the most effective ways to separate yourself from the field during the interview process. If you can get someone already at the company to vouch for your skills, it will make a bigger impact than even the most well-written cover letter.

  1. Build a website or visual portfolio

Take a page from other industries, where candidates supplement their resumes with supporting materials. For example, if you helped drive a program that improved organizational workflow at your hospital, write a short summary and post it online.

We know what you’re probably thinking: “No one in the medical field has a portfolio.” You’re absolutely right — and that’s exactly why you should have one.

  1. Start making a difference before you’re hired

For tip #1, we mentioned that you should write a pain letter detailing your future organization’s challenges and how you’ll solve them. If you want to take it a step further, why not show them how you’ll do it?

This could include anything from creating a proposal for a new program to suggesting a new marketing tactic. But be careful not to point out too many flaws in the organization. Instead, frame them as easy opportunities for improvement. (Driven by you, of course.)

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask for the job

We’ve touched on this before at, but it bears repeating. One of the most powerful (and yet most forgotten) things you can do is ask for the job when the interview is over.

Hiring managers want to feel like you’re excited about landing the position. Coming right out and asking for it is a foolproof way of showing that you are.

We hope these 5 tips help you land your dream job. But first, you have to find it — and the best place to start is Visit us today to see all the incredible opportunities waiting for you. 


The information in this article originally appeared on To read the original article, click here.