The Worst Advice We’ve Ever Heard about Job Search Strategy
Searching for a job can be grueling and stagnant, especially if you prescribe to every piece of advice you hear. Like most rumors you read on the internet, not every piece of information is right for each situation. This article will explore some of the guidance you might receive from others with additional information explaining why it should be taken with a grain of salt.
You Don’t Need a Cover Letter.
There are people who will tell you cover letters are obsolete. This person could be a hiring manager, your parent, or even your best friend however, this is false information. When you apply for a position, especially if it is through an online format, a cover letter is required material. Cover letters give you the opportunity to expand upon points made in your resume. It is best to keep your cover letter to a maximum of one page and attempt to obtain the hiring manager’s information to address it directly to them. This will show that you took the time to write it for them and express your enthusiasm for the position or company. A cover letter alone won’t land an interview for you, but it will help make a case for your candidacy for the position applied.
Everything Happens Online (or In-person) – Taking Job Applications to Either Extreme.
With the turnover in technology, online applications are the largest net for your job search. However, networking doesn’t always happen online, or face-to-face. Using too much effort on either realm of your job search limits opportunities that the other might provide. Online research can open the door for you, but to create a memorable connection you should attempt to identify individuals to meet in person. Taking the time to meet someone from the company, through an informational interview situation or otherwise, could result in a referral for the position. Referrals show that you went above the company’s expectations. However, a referral does not guarantee an interview or job offer.
Personal Interaction Is the Only Way in.
While following up with your application is encouraged by most companies, being overzealous might hurt your chances instead of helping you. There is such a thing as too much interaction with the hiring manager so, be sure you are respecting normal personal space bubbles. Don’t become akin to the ex-girl/boyfriend who can’t take ‘no’ for an answer. Continuous calling or emailing could be construed as aggressive or desperate. Neither attribute will make you more attractive as a candidate for the position. Your best course of action, after applying and if possible, would be to contact the employer, hiring manager, or recruiter once to follow up on your application and show your interest in the position/company.
Persevere – You’ll Only Get a Job if You Keep at it.
Apply, apply, apply. Apply to everything, despite the required qualifications. The more jobs you have applied to, the greater the chance that you’ll land one, right? Not necessarily. You should apply to positions you are qualified for, not just anything. Tailor your resume to best display how your skills and experience make you the ideal candidate for the job(s) for which you would be an excellent fit. Strategic applications increase your odds at a much greater interval than applying to anything and everything. By applying to everything, you are wasting time and energy you that should be put toward finding the right position for you.
Just Be Yourself – or the Complete Opposite.
Some people will tell you to be yourself during an interview, on your resume, and through the online applications and questionnaires. Others will tell you to be who you think the company wants for the job. You really need to land somewhere in the middle. Portray your experience and personality authentically, but steer it in a way that shows the hiring manager you are the candidate they want. Be aware of your language, attire, and behavior. You should also not confuse authenticity with professionalism. Being authentic means that you should not behave, speak, or dress outside of what is true to you, but cater to your audience. Think about it this way: if you wouldn’t say or do it in front of your grandparents, you definitely don’t want to do that with a hiring manager as witness
Not all job search advice will harm your chances, but there is a balance to everything. Extra effort is attractive, however you must always consider what the hiring manager would think is appropriate. The advice you end up following should be your own. What has or hasn’t worked for you in the past? Expand on your own experiences and, with practice, your instincts will guide you. If that isn’t enough to help you gain your dream job, the FiveStrengths experts can provide additional support.