How do I make up for lack of experience on my résumé? It feels like the biggest catch-22 of the working world: You can’t get a job without experience, but you can’t get experience without a job. The good news is, it’s not as impossible as it sounds.

 Navigating the "experience necessary" criteria in the job world might seem like a classic Catch-22—finding it challenging to land a job without experience and simultaneously unable to gain experience without a job. However, breaking this cycle is not impossible. Here's how you can make your résumé shine despite a lack of traditional work experience.

## Broadening Your Understanding of 'Experience'

The first step is to broaden your understanding of the word "experience". Early in my career, my search for my first journalism job was backed not by a full-time job in a publication, but by a potpourri of related experiences. I wrote for my university's newspaper, was the editor-in-chief of the literary magazine, and interned at a weekly paper during the summer. These experiences, in tandem with a recommendation from my journalism professor, landed me a part-time job as a copy editor at a daily newspaper. While it wasn't my dream job, it certainly marked the beginning of my professional journey. 

## Gaining Experience Through Part-time and Freelance Opportunities

Your quest for experience could benefit from part-time jobs, freelance work, and even voluntary work—a strategy proven beneficial for me. Apart from traditional jobs, one could also count on personal initiatives to pave the way forward. For instance, later in my career, I created a personal blog, the content of which piqued the interest of a hiring manager and paved the way for a job offer.

## Leveraging Your Transferable Skills 

Another beneficial strategy is to identify and leverage your transferable skills. I found myself in a situation where my résumé submissions yielded no responses. I then pivoted towards an investment banking job in London, which led to another job in New York, this time in corporate communications. These positions helped me build a set of transferable skills that I later found useful in securing my first magazine job. 

## Highlighting Your Skills on Your Résumé

After identifying the skills you wish to highlight, use your résumé effectively to showcase them. If your work experience isn't as relevant as the other skills you have acquired along the way, consider moving the 'Skills' section of your résumé to the top. The same can be done for your education, voluntary experience, or anything else that might be more pertinent to the role you desire.

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