Job hunting can be tremendously tasking and requires a lot of clever instincts to make wise decisions. However, mistakes are inevitable as expectations from employers and recruiters may be unknown to the job seeker. Nevertheless, there are job hunting mistakes which are common and known, therefore avoidable.
Common Job Hunting Mistakes
Here are ten common job-hunting mistakes which must be avoided by job seekers:
#1. Lack of Career/ Job Focus:
This is a recurring mistake common among job seekers when job hunting. A lack of career focus, occurs when the job seeker doesn’t know what he/she wants from a career or a job is applying for. A step in the right direction is figuring out the profession or occupation they intend to carve a career and go after it. Nowadays, the labour market is intensively competitive and recruiters/employers don’t have time for candidates who are literally confused about career paths or who cannot muster enough interest or passion for a job role.
#2. Job Searching Without a Plan:
This is another recurring mistake. Most job candidates often launch a job hunt without creating or mapping out a plan on how to go about it. This is a wrong approach, with the amount of information at disposal via the internet, preparation and planning can be done through adequate research on companies, job roles, positions, interview questions, and etiquettes. A plan is important as it allows a job seeker to be proactive rather than reactive. A plan focuses your plan and keeps you prepared for unforeseen circumstances as a spontaneous interview or meeting an immediate job application deadline. A plan gives the job seeker a systematic approach rather than a random approach as it helps you track your progress and detect errors with a remedial cure in place.
#3. Relying Only on Job Postings:
Job seekers often make the mistake of pursuing job postings announced publicly via job boards and neglect the place of networking. When job hunting, it is good to adopt proactive approaches such as networking and referrals. It is easy to submit a resume on job boards and hope for the best but in reality, that’s not enough. Being proactive means using and dedicating all resources available and tailoring them to a job hunt. This includes networking, gaining referrals, using trade & industries publications, etc.
#4. Looking Only for Job Openings:
It is quite common amongst job seekers to search for ‘job openings’ in interested companies’ websites rather than opportunities. This is quite an obsolete mistake as the best jobs are seldomly listed ‘vacancies’ or ‘openings.’ Rather the best job positions are those created by the candidate, often at the interview. The key to achieving this is to shift your focus to ‘opportunities’ rather than ‘openings’, this helps you weigh the needs of the company and carve a position for yourself by proposing a solution to such needs.
#5. Going Only After Big Companies:
This is quite a common mistake especially among candidates with high academic qualifications. A lot of candidates often dedicate resources in chasing hob opportunities with big companies, but they forget that the skills and experience sought to achieve can be obtained in smaller companies which are unknown to the candidate. Thus, there is need to expand your search to include these companies.
#6. Submitting Inadequate Resumes:
Another common job-hunting mistakes among candidates. Job seekers often submit generic resumes that can suit all roles rather than crafting a resume which is tailored to meet the company’s needs and requirements for the job position.
#7. Submitting Unsolicited Resumes:
Another common mistake that occurs among job seekers. Submitting an unsolicited resume to a recruiter or employer without seeking to propose a disturbing need would be a grave mistake. Such resumes would be trashed into the garbage.
#8. You Downplay your Strengths:
This common job-hunting mistake is popular amongst job seekers who are ignorant of their strengths and often focus on their weakness. A job seeker ignorant of their strength can be misguided into applying for job positions that hide such strengths and expose such weaknesses. Therefore, it is wise to know and explore your strengths while working on to improve your weakness.
#9. Talking Too Much During an Interview:
This is also common among job seekers when job hunting especially during an interview. It is important to listen carefully and tactically during an interview as it helps you detect the employer/recruiter’s expectations from the candidate.
#10. Not Knowing Your Market Value:
This is common among entry-level job seekers. The desperation to obtain skills or grow a career can lead you to sell your skills cheaply. Although, the focus should not be on the consideration, but a value on your skills helps to build confidence in your expectations to meet your career goals. Therefore, it is best to research the market value of your skills before a putting a price tag on it and in the process build it through other means such as taking a class.
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These mistakes highlighted below are recurring and are easily made amongst young job seekers, however the key to avoiding these mistakes is to asking questions from people in your previous positions, researching and most importantly networking. Networking apart from gaining information on available job roles extends to making inquiries about applying for a job role.