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Charting a Course for a Job in the U.S.

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Summary: Looking for a job in finance but have no prior work experience in the United States? Find out how to get one in this article.


Question: I recently earned an M.B.A. with a concentration in finance. I have an outstanding academic record but haven’t received a job offer. I am a legal alien with work experience in India but not the U.S. Do you think this is why I am having a hard time earning offers?

Answer: Because many factors play into the length of a job search, it is difficult—especially from a limited description—to determine if it is your lack of U.S. experience that is delaying a job offer. We are living in the age of dichotomies. On the one hand, employers are touting diversity; on the other hand, they are making conservative hiring decisions.

Given the competitive job market, emphasize your proven track record and academic credentials. Create a resume using a functional format that highlights your achievements and results based on your skill set, not previous employers and work locations.

In the current climate, with plenty of candidates for few opportunities, your ability to differentiate yourself is critical. You must go face-to-face with employers, so seek opportunities to turn your contacts into conversations with hiring managers. If there are alumni at any of your targeted employers, be sure to call on them to open the door and make introductions.

Put together a portfolio of your work and develop a well-prepared statement of the attributes you have to offer. Offer to sign on initially for a six-month trial basis to demonstrate the value you would bring to the company. Practice interviewing until your presentation is flawless. In a tight job market, these extra steps will help to shave time off of an extended search.

See Looking for a Job Overseas for more information about finding a job outside of the U.S.

Charting a Course for a Job in the U.S. by
Authored by: Andrew Ostler

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