How to Avoid Common Job Seeker Mistakes – Part One

2021, Job Market

Even the most experienced job seekers can fall prey to a fatal error or two that can cost them their dream job. Select Resumes identify the most common job seeker mistakes and offer advice on how to avoid making them.

Plan Your Search Properly

Finding a job or changing careers is a job in itself and should be approached systematically. When you lack a strategy for your job search, it is easy to feel like you are wandering aimlessly through job boards and postings. Every job seeker needs to have a goal followed up with a plan. If you find yourself randomly applying for jobs and not following up with each application, then you lack the preparation you need for a successful search. We suggest coming up with a well-thought-out methodology, allocating time to daily introspection and planning, setting aside dedicated space in your home for searching, applying for and tracking the results of your search. You should also have a system set up to make sure you are holding yourself accountable – applying for a certain amount of positions each day, making networking connections, reworking resumes and the like.

Create a Tactic That Works for You

The key to turning around your job search is to start with the end in mind. Ask yourself where you want to be in the next six months, upcoming year, and even five years from now. Once you have an idea of where you want to be in the future, search for opportunities that will help you accomplish those goals.

As you begin applying for jobs, staying organised is essential. You can start by creating bookmark folders and a spreadsheet to keep track of jobs you have applied for and ones you would like to apply for. You should also begin building a list of contacts who can help you during your search, too. This way, you will know exactly who to contact when trying to network your way into a position.

Avoid making rookie job seeker mistakes with this guide.

Do Not Be Desperate

If you have signed up with a recruitment agency, remember to be selective. When a candidate applies for every single job that a recruiter has available, it makes the candidate appear desperate. Because they recruit for a wide spectrum of positions, it does not look good when a candidate applies for a Finance Manager role, an IT Architect, a Human Resources Assistant and a Marketing Communications Specialist. Besides looking desperate, they now have to look at the resume and explain why that candidate is not a fit for every position that he or she applied for and disposition them for every single job. This is time-consuming and honestly, a waste of the recruiter’s valuable time.

A much better approach to getting into a company you are targeting is to do your research. Go to LinkedIn and find the recruiter for the role that you are interested in and send a well-written email introducing yourself. The scattershot application approach just makes a candidate look lazy.

Get Some Perspective 

Job seekers who find themselves focused too much on selling their skills to employers should step away from their search and evaluate their progress. It is important to take an objective look at your search because it can help you find the roadblocks you may have been creating for yourself. 

Start your evaluation by making a list of the positive and negative things you find yourself doing with your search. For example, let us say you have a near-perfect resume and cover letter which has landed you numerous interviews. However, prior to the interview, you do very little research on the employer. You will discover that this mistake in your preparation could be holding you back from landing the job.

If you find yourself making some of these mistakes, it is not too late to turn around your job search. Whether you have been on the hunt for a new job for two weeks or two months, searching for a job is a learning process. You are going to discover what works best for you and what employers want. Just remember to be attentive to your search and be aware of the mistakes you could be making.

Next time, we will look at further common mistakes job seekers make that are holding them back.

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How to Avoid Common Job Seeker Mistakes – Part Two
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