Searching for a new job? You might be surprised to learn that many “facts” of job hunting are actually not true. Don’t let these myths keep you from your next great job opportunity.
- You need to be 100% qualified. Job listings are always overkill. They’re typically written based on what the last person in that role was doing on their last day, not what they were doing as a new employee and don’t take into account training/learning on the job. Although it’s great if you do have all the qualifications remember that it’s ok to apply for postitions you’re just slightly underqualified for.
- You can’t talk about salary right away or you need to take whatever they offer you. If they’re hiring they already have a budget in place. Let them know from the start what offer you would consider as an acceptable salary. It won’t scare them away to know what you want to paid, in fact, it sets you apart as someone who knows what they want. If they aren’t going to pay enough to persuade you to work for them then no point wasting your time interviewing for the role.
- Apply to as many jobs as possible. Although volume is good it’s better to apply to a targeted list of jobs that are a close match then follow-up with those positions if you don’t hear anything back. If you apply to dozens of jobs and don’t keep track you’ll miss out on the opportunity to set your resume apart by following-up.
- It’s all about who you know and I don’t know anyone so I can’t get a job. This is a half-myth. It is true that having connections can help you get a job but if you don’t know anyone use that opportunity to make connections. Attend networking events, job fairs and even connect via social media sites like Twitter, LinkedIn or G+. Practice targeted networking where you attend events with specific goals in mind. Also be open to meeting others when you’re out and about. Although it’s tempting to look busy on a cellphone, remember that the person sitting next you on the bus, airplane or subway might be your connection to a new job.
- I sent in my applications and there’s nothing more I can do but wait to hear back. Job applications are always a waiting game but if you’re not getting any responses it’s time to stop waiting. For positions that are a great fit, follow up after your initial application with an email to confirm they received your application. If that doesn’t yield results, make a call to make sure your application got to the right person. Although some companies discourage phone calls about positions, a call to make sure they received your application is different than a call to try to sell yourself as the perfect candidate.
- Even though I’m a perfect fit for this position I’ll probably never hear from them. This myth can become true if you don’t present yourself as a perfect candidate for the position. If you truly are a perfect fit for a role they should be dying to talk to you. If you’re not getting calls for roles that are a good match it’s a good idea to re-evaluate your cover letters and applications to make sure you’re presenting yourself as being a great match for the position. Then, add in some follow up and watch the interest in your application take off.
- To get a job you need to be professional in the interview so I can’t act like myself. People hire people they like. Some candidates can take being “professional” as being stiff, formal and boring. Let your personality shine! If they don’t like you for you then this isn’t the place for you. Of course, professionalism is still a requirement, never be rude or inappropriate during an interview.
What myths have you busted on your job hunt?