It really doesn't matter if
you are a Career Changer searching for greener pastures or a full time Job Seeker in need of a new job. Job Seeking comes in two colours only! Black & White So … Check for yourself if you are doing one or more of these Top 10 Timewasters and then go and change your approach.
Not reading the job posting
properly Guys, seriously! Read the job posting. I mean, really read it. Not just the job title. Every job is different. Just because the job title is remotely related to your skill set doesn’t mean you’ll be qualified. If you don’t meet most of the criteria, don’t bother.
. Not checking off the
“minimum requirements.” Check off the “minimum requirements.” They’re not kidding. If they require an engineering degree and you don’t have one, you’re wasting your time responding to the job posting. You are sending the wrong signals if you ignore the minimum.
Sending multiple applications to the
same company or recruiter One of the silliest things to do! You may think it’s more time and cost effective to just apply for three or four positions, but if your applications make it through the company or recruiter systems (ATS) , you’ll show up in someone’s inbox with multiple personalities. Contrary to popular belief, you won’t be seen as versatile... more like confused or desperate or undecided.
No Follow-up Follow-up. Yes, it’s
important to send a note or email immediately after the interview and keep in touch afterwards. But hey! …Once a week is enough, not every day and twice on Friday. When you follow up, (including phone calls) ask what the next steps are and how the prospective hiring professional would prefer follow up communication. Then, follow the lead.
Failing to “Move on” Move
on. If you get a rejection, learn what you can and move on. On the other hand, I have, on occasion, sent a follow up email expressing appreciation for the interview and asked if they had any feedback for me. Most employers won’t respond, but some may let you know where your skills or experience fell short. They may have misunderstood something, and you’ll have an opportunity to restate your qualifications. Plus, you might help set yourself up for future opportunities.
Writing a million cover letters
I’m going to let you in on a big secret that most Recruiters and Hiring Managers won’t tell you: No one cares anymore about cover letters unless they specifically asked for it! If a cover letter is requested, do your best, be genuine, honest, short and simple and, most importantly, make it clear why you are the best one for the position.
Applying for jobs you like
vs those you are suited for There are a lot of cool jobs out there. There are also a lot of hip, snazzy companies. It’s easy to get hypnotised by the hipness. If you are really not suited for the job, don’t apply! No matter how cool the ad is or how great you think the job might be. Don’t drink the cool company Kool-Aid. The more you avoid this, the sooner you will get a job.
Filling out a gazillion online
applications Online applications eat enormous amounts of time, particularly government ones. Unless you know someone at the company who will flag it or email it to the right person, your application is just more hay in the haystack. You are also adding to your online footprint in ATS systems and potentially reduce your chances for future applications. Your time is better spent contacting people in your field who can do something with your application rather than just filing application after application after application with no response.
Going to “Getting the Gig”
events These are the worst. This is how these events usually go: You register, get a name tag, shell out $20-45 to eat pretzels, carrots, brie and ranch dressing and hear one keynote speaker or a panel of five people (give or take). Everyone there is hoping that they will hit it off so well with one of the speakers that they will get a key contact or reference and voila … a job. They think they will stand out in the crowd of other Career Changers or Job Seekers; the same experience, the same elevator speech, the same the same the same. Don’t throw your name in the raffle hoping it’s drawn. Don’t be a Timewaster! Create situations where you’re the only name in the bowl.
Doubting Yourself You believe in
yourself or you don’t. The longer you spend deciding whether or not you’re good at what you want to do, the more time you waste not doing what you want. When not doing what you love is more painful than overcoming the doubt in your ability to do it, you, my friends, are marching down the right path. Now, whatever you do, DON’T STOP. Keep marching and remember to hunt wisely! Uli