Errors while looking for a job
Candidates actively looking for a job often ask us why companies are not responding to their applications. No wonder – it can be frustrating! If you send hundreds of CVs and no one contacts you or breaks the contact after the meeting – this article is for you. I will give you the most popular mistakes in job search that candidates make. You may be committing some of them unknowingly.
Looking for a job only when you lose it
This is a very common occurrence and you may be wondering why look for a job when you have one? First of all, for your own mental comfort! If you feel that your current job is no longer satisfying, you feel chronically tired, and the thought of Monday gives you a headache – it’s time to change something. It is worth observing the labor market and the economic situation of the company in which you work – then no one will surprise you with a dismissal, and you will be prepared to find a better offer.
Sudden job loss is a very common cause for fear. The pressure to find something new quickly can hurt us even more, stressing us that we will soon have nothing to pay the bills with. Then we fall into the trap – we start applying chaotically for all possible offers. As the period of unemployment increases, our self-esteem decreases and our frustration increases. Give yourself the freedom to search – you will also gain a sense of security. When you are looking for a job while you are still working, you really have nothing to lose – you are more confident, and failures are not so serious.
You prepare your CV in a hurry
I have divided the topic of the CV into two sub-points for a reason – it is still the main source of ineffective job searching! Admit it to yourself – how much time did you take to look after your business card? Your CV is the first place your potential employer will find out about you – don’t let it become the last.
Have you heard about recruiters who stop reading someone’s CV after a few seconds? Unfortunately, this is often true. So what if you have impressive experience and completed many courses if you can’t show it? Don’t consider writing your CV as a chore, but as something you want to show off and that looks good. If you feel that you cannot do it well enough – do not be afraid to ask a specialist for support. Many recruiters are able to help you improve the appearance of your CV in such a way that you see your abilities in a new light! And one more thing – content is most important, but that’s not all. If possible – ask a graphic designer for help. A clean and legible CV will definitely stand out more if it is not dry text in Times New Roman font.
You have one CV for each process
Unfortunately – many candidates do not know how important it is a matter of matching your CV to the selected offer. And sometimes small corrections and underlining the relevant competences can work wonders! I’ll give you an example. Imagine two pairs of pants: one in a universal size that fits everyone, and the other sewn by a tailor especially for you to size. Theoretically – both pairs fulfill their roles. However, those that are prepared especially for you will be much more to your face. It will also be more comfortable for you. It works the same with a CV.
The CV you already have is a summary of all your experiences. Treat them as foundations. It fulfills its role, but does not emphasize your skills that are useful in a specific position. How to write a tailor-made CV then? When reviewing the requirements for the desired position – pay attention to the elements that define the ideal candidate. For example: Candidate Jan is an experienced salesperson. He has extensive experience in both individual (B2C) and business (B2B) sales. The offer he is currently reviewing applies to a Sales position for business clients. In such a situation, Jan should list all achievements in B2B sales from his extensive experience. The recruiter will pay special attention to them.
Lack of organization in the search
Admit it – have you ever applied chaotically to all available offers, and then you have forgotten what positions you applied for? It probably ended badly on the phone interview because you weren’t able to tell anything about the company the recruiter was calling from. I will tell you a little secret – for the employer your motivation is of great importance. Why? Seeing a motivated employee, from the very beginning of the recruitment process, he receives a signal that as an employed employee you will be very committed and willing to work.
If you are applying for positions in various companies, create a paper or online document where you collect the most important information about the company and the position you are applying for. Additionally, create a column with your questions or thoughts. Such a table can also help you when making a hiring decision! You can create your own assessment criteria and compare the benefits of working in each of the companies you apply to. Prepare the questions that you will ask during the interview.
No plan and no set goals
Before you search for “job offers”, think about what your requirements are. Then, confront it with your previous experience and think – do you want to develop further in the same industry, or maybe you want to change something? Gather all your requirements and then match them with the employer’s offer. Have you saved your requirements before? Great, you’ve saved a few precious hours! Now plan your next activities. Determine how much time you give yourself for each stage of the search. Such a plan will allow you to control the situation and you will certainly feel calmer.
Additionally, check if the job offer includes the estimated time between the stages of the recruitment process and the number of stages. There are processes that contain only two stages of recruitment, and others that contain several stages – remember that there is usually a week off between these stages, and some employers give themselves 2 weeks to decide on your hiring – therefore during the entire planning process, it is worth considering how long the entire recruitment process will take.
You go ‘to the element’ instead of preparing for an interview
How many times have you gone to an interview spontaneously? Have you ever wondered what would happen if you had previously read about the employer or practiced answers to the classic questions that appeared during an interview? You won’t turn back time, but you can be better prepared for all the conversations that await you! Not only the face-to-face ones, but also the telephone ones that serve as the first contact in the recruitment process.
What questions should you be prepared for when interviewing a potential employer? Many of them depend on the company and expectations – it is possible that you will have to come up with a solution to the hypothetical situation. However, there are some questions you’ll always hear: What do you know about the company you are applying to? What is your motivation to start work / change jobs? What is your work experience? What elements of your experience will you use in a given position? There are plenty of such “classic” questions, so it is worth knowing the answer to them in advance. So prepare your best for this stage of the recruitment process!
Looking for a job passively
I can bet that when I count your ways of looking for a job, I will stop at the fingers of one hand. Among them, we can find:
- Searching on portals with offers
- Viewing offers on LinkedIn
- Checking the “career” tab on the websites of the employers you are interested in.
- Meetings on recommendation from friends and family
- Visit to the Labor Office
These are only a handful of solutions. Are they good? Of course, in some cases it is enough. However, it quickly turns out that looking for a job this way gives you a very narrow range of companies that you can work for. What’s more – it’s very likely that you won’t end up with the job that suits you best! Because do your friends always have an interesting offer for you? Does the company you think you want to work for often recruit someone with your qualifications? And finally: how many applications (and what quality) do you send when scrolling through portals with advertisements?
It’s worth looking for other ways – of course, it costs a little more effort, but it will probably help you find a place that is much better suited to Your qualifications.
You have a demanding approach to the employer
Humility and humility again! You may not admit it to yourself at first, but you’ve probably once assumed that you deserve more for no apparent reason. Remember that when you work for someone, the boss has the final say. Don’t start the conversation with your demands and try to avoid making demands. This is an extremely undesirable feature for candidates.
However, do not confuse a claiming attitude with an assertive attitude! The latter is the ability to express your feelings, emotions and needs without the intention of hurting other people. I encourage you to give your opinion at all times – just do it professionally. Humility and assertiveness are qualities that many employers appreciate very much.
We get discouraged quickly
The speed of finding a new job depends on several factors. First of all, the general situation on the labor market, the industry, the position that interests you and your competences and experience. We have no influence on some of these things, but we can ensure the development of our competences and good preparation for the recruitment process. When looking for a job, it is worth having your plan B – both in terms of industry and location. This will allow us to expand the search area. Unfortunately, it often happens that when applying for many offers, only some employers will contact you. It is worth drawing conclusions from such a situation and considering what may be the source of the problem. And of course, don’t get discouraged! Learn from your failures and analyze the feedback you get when your application is rejected. Remember to always ask for it! Emotions often take over, so you don’t have to do it on the day you receive the refusal. Remember, however, that the employer’s decision may have been due to your mistake during the interview or a slight lack of qualifications. Sometimes the matter of training a language or learning a particular thing can turn the results of your research in your favor. Remember not to stick to the offer of one employer.
Lack of self-confidence accompanies you every step of the way
During the job interview, we need to present ourselves well to get a job. Or – to call things spelled out – sell themselves. When going to an interview, think about what you can give the company and why you should be employed. It’s time to sum up all your successes and strengths. Remember that great successes arise from small steps and challenges you undertake every day – write down all your successes and small steps in a diary every day. This will help you prepare for the interview, because thanks to this you will not forget about any achievement. Remember that the numbers work well for potential employers – make yourself known as an effective and efficient person. If you do not think of your strengths, or you are not sure of your competences – use the competence tests! You will find those that will help you check both soft and hard skills. A good example is the language test, thanks to which you will quickly determine your level on a European scale.
Believe in yourself and show what you can do! Of course – with self-confidence it can be different. Do you know that according to Hewlett Packard research, men apply to ads whose requirements are met in only 60%? Women decide to apply when they meet 100% of expectations. As far as I know, this does not mean that more women are employed. Proposal? Remember that you are your worst critic and the requirements set by your employer can look scarier on paper. Approach it with a smile on your face and openness – they cost nothing and can help a lot!
So what’s the recipe for an effective search? First of all, avoid the above mistakes, take care of your preparation for the interview and most of all – prepare an action plan!