Getting a job these days is all about fit. You might be competing against dozens or even hundreds of other applicants who have similar education and experience to you, so you have to find ways to prove to employers that you’re the right person for the job.
For Devon Lee, an Integrated Strategic Communication graduate from the University of Kentucky, her passion for and experience with travel and education made her stand out – she was hired by EF Education First as an Account Service Representative in October 2010 and now works as a Customer Account Manager with the company in Toronto.
“I’ve always been involved in both travel and education through work and school, from being a Tour Director in Western Canada to teaching English in South Korea,” she says. “On the flip side, I can relate to the students’ perspectives of educational travel having studied abroad in Cyprus.”
University of Guelph Bachelor of Commerce grad Kyle Morrison took a different approach when he applied for a Marketing Co-op role with EF, which led to a full-time Marketing Co-ordinator job after graduation. “I was able to show that I am driven, organized and flexible, and a fast learner – that’s what made me a good fit,” he says.
It takes more than a few sentences to show why you’re a good fit, however, so keep reading to find out how Devon and Kyle navigated EF’s application and interview process, and why they’ve both had a successful start to their EF careers.
Kyle: EF seemed like a great place to launch my career. It’s a big company with a small company feel. EF is very entrepreneurial and this allows even entry level employees great exposure to so many aspects of the business. This exposure has allowed me to gain a holistic view of the company, and learn where my strengths are and which areas of the business I enjoy working in the most.
Devon: EF is world-renowned for being the leader in private education and here in Canada we’re known as the experts on educational travel!
Kyle: The interview process is fairly intense, with a lot of different VPs and managers talking with you – they are looking for a good fit. You get exposure to many of the people you will be working with and get some pretty good insight into the day-to-day experience at EF.
Devon: Very fast! From the time I submitted my resume to my first day of training, it was about 2 weeks. The interview process involved a phone interview and in-person interview with several EF managers.
Kyle: I believe I was hired by EF due to the enthusiasm and passion I displayed during the interview process. Having a passion for travel and a hunger to learn the business is a big part of the culture at EF. Fortunately I had this going into the interview, so I think it made me an easy fit.
Devon: Because everyone at EF is passionate about travel, we were able to connect and share mutual experiences. Aside from my enthusiasm for the business, I also highlighted my work ethic and attention to detail.
Kyle: The biggest reason I have been successful at EF is because I have a strong ability to communicate. In this fast-paced role communication is the most critical skill you need to bring to the table. To be successful at EF, you also have to have an ability to learn quickly and adapt on the fly – this is where organization skills are essential.
Devon: It’s a lot of hard work, but at the end of the day we all love what we do and that’s always a motivating factor for me. I think building relationships within the company has also been integral because none of us could succeed at our jobs without the help of our co-workers across various departments. It’s definitely a team effort!
Kyle: I don’t think I approach my job too differently from most of my other colleagues. Everyone here is pretty motivated and comes to work with a drive to better the company day in and day out.
Devon: Everyone brings different skills and strengths to the table and we try to utilize those to our best advantage. Regardless of experience or age, each person is able to contribute in a significant way. For me personally, I’m a forward thinker who likes to step back and look at the things we do from a bigger picture. I always enjoy trying to make processes more efficient, effective and customer-friendly.
Kyle: If you are passionate about travel that is key – if you bring passion and enthusiasm for travel and/or education you are already a great fit for EF.
Devon: If you are passionate about helping students see the world and you’re willing to work diligently to make that a reality, then you should seriously consider EF. We have a dynamic office full of young grads with all sorts of educational backgrounds and life experience.