Professional references can be incredibly valuable when you’re looking for a job. As you go through interviews, a hiring manager will typically check in with the references you provide to get a better sense of your professional accomplishments and what it’s like to work with you on a personal level. Having someone confirm how wonderful you are is a powerful tool to help shore up your fit and qualifications for a position.
Your references can make or break a job offer, so it’s important to choose wisely. Typically, hiring managers will ask for 2-3 references. So, who do you choose?
Choose people who:
Know your work well.
Speak positively about your accomplishments and qualifications.
Vouch for your character.
Former supervisors, colleagues, or people who know you well in a work setting (like clients) make for great references!
It’s also crucial that you ask permission from your possible references before providing their contact information to a potential employer. Tell them what types of positions you are interviewing for and ask them to reflect on their experiences with you if they are contacted.
Remember, one of the best ways to pay for college and to knock out that student loan debt is to land a job that you enjoy and that enables you to begin loan repayment. Having stellar references will get you one step closer to that goal.