Don’t have summer job yet? Don’t panic


May’s here and you don’t have a summer job lined up?  Read this before panic sets in around the kitchen table at home.

At The Bagg Group, we get what it’s like to be a student on the lookout for work.  We’ve worked with thousands as temps over the years.  And of course, we were all students once.

So we have a few tried-and-true tips for you.

First, approach your search with optimism.  After all, there are lots of ways for you to acquire experiences this summer that will pay off for your career.

Second, take the words of Bagg Group CEO Geoff Bagg to heart: Whatever you do this summer, be sure to do something. Anyone who interviews you for a job will want to know you have a track interviews of  initiative, drive, and energy.

Think Temp:

Check out the temporary opportunities on our job board.

The secret: When you do well at one temp job, you’ll find it easier to get more. You may be able to temp your way through college or university.

The career pay-off:  You’ll be amazed how much you’ll learn. You’ll be able to talk about the skills and insight you gained at future job interviews.  Plus, you’ll meet great people and make contacts.

Bonus tip: Bagg@Your Service is on the look-out for temps to work at major sporting events, music festivals, concerts, and other happenings in the GTA this spring and summer.

Now in demand are promo staff and brand ambassadors, front-of-house (servers, bartenders, team leads), and back-of-house (cooks, prep cooks, dishwashers). Check it out and apply asap.

Prepare a pitch about yourself, and network.

About 44% of jobs happen through networking.  Don’t be shy about asking people if they’re looking for help or know someone who is.  People appreciate those who want to work.

secretThe secret: Make it super easy for others to ask on your behalf.  Ask family and contacts if you can email them a short pitch about yourself which they can quickly copy and paste and pass on

Here’s an example:

If anyone could use a really creative, hard-working, ( college / university/ grade 12 high school) student to help them on social media project this summer,  my (nephew/niece/ friend/ fill in the blank) is a whiz and is looking for work.

You can add another line specifying your talents or interests.  For example, you could add that you have great organizational skills, or you’re adept at graphics, etc. 

The career payoff:   Contacts, references, work!

When you can’t get a job, get a business:

 What  kind of service could you offer?  It could be anything, from mowing yards, to online research, to personal shopping.  Come up with a company name, create a Facebook page, figure out who your market is, and how you can reach them.

The secret: You’ll find it’s uplifting, even fun, to focus on how make your own business succeed. You’ll see that you naturally begin to observe and get inspired from how other services market themselves. Next thing you know, you’ll be testing out marketing tactics, and telling everyone about your business.

The career payoff: You’ll be able to talk about how you started and grew a business, and what you learned from the experience.

Print off resumes, and go for a walk:  

The more things change, the more some things stay the same. Of course, you want to keep looking online for summer jobs, but the traditional way of walking into stores, cafes, restaurants, etc. and dropping off your resume still works.

The secret: Dress appropriately.  We know from studies that you make a first impression within six seconds. It’s important to walk in looking like someone whom the manager could see fitting in.

The career payoff:  Your experience always gives you something worthwhile to talk about in future interviews.

Volunteer, shadow, intern:

If you can’t find an internship,  ask to volunteer with an organization that speaks to your interests. You can write blogs, fund-raise, hand out water bottles at marathons –whatever you do, it counts for something.

The secret: If an organization of interest isn’t advertising for help, come up with an idea of what you could do for them and call. A lot of people want to help students get experience, so don’t hold back on asking.  If you reach out by email, use the subject line well — indicate you’re a student who wants to help out this summer.  You can still volunteer even if you get a summer job.

The career payoff:  Experience, contacts, and proof that you are a team-player who likes to get involved.

A note about your resume:   If you don’t have any work experience, detail your extra-curricular activities.  For example, if you’re on a sports team, include your position, and any way you support the team.  If you have a hobby or strong area of interest, talk about your involvement.   The aim is to show energy, enthusiasm, initiative, and reliability.

The Bagg Group has five thriving divisions:  Bagg Professional, Bagg Technology Resources, Bagg@Your Service, Bagg Managed Resources, Turn Key Staffing Solutions. All together, we’ve placed more than 60,000 happy people in temporary, contract and full-time positions over our long history.  Keep watching our boards.

Gene Hayden, author of The Follow-Through Factor: Getting from Doubt to Done (Random House), is a career coach and writer-in-residence for The Bagg Group.


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