Flowers and chocolates are among the least worrisome expectations many of us face on Valentine’s Day. A far more daunting one for some? Is never being able to find that perfect match in the first place, not just in love but also in their career.
Searching for your perfect job is a little like searching for your perfect love match.
In order to successfully find a partner or take the next step in your career, you need to be specific and honest about what you are looking for, but most importantly you need to be pro-active. It’s time to stop being complacent. Good things come to those who wait, but great things come to those who are willing to go out there and make things happen.
You’ll stand more chance of attracting a long-lasting relationship or that ideal role if you have a clear list of objectives.
It all starts with knowing what you want and what you are willing to compromise on. Most people have at least a few items on their list of what their ideal partner will be like, and a few items on their list of dealbreakers. Whether you can’t date a smoker or want to find someone with a good sense of humour, these items are important to help you weed through the time wasters.
You should have a similar list for your job search. Know where your skills and abilities lie, and know what you’d like to do with them. Understand the environments in which you thrive and the cultures in which you loathe.
So what can you do to help yourself find your perfect match this Valentines Day!
Whether you’re looking for love or a new job your online presence has become a vital component in the search process. In both cases, your online profile can be the only thing standing between a dream life and rejection.
Tell me too much about your quirky habits and I will think you’re weird. Too little and I won’t care enough to contact you. Your online CV should be the same.
Leave out looked over buzzwords and get down to the facts. Make very apparent the three or four things that you are passionate about so you can attract someone who actually has the same interests.
Display your strengths and capabilities by joining industry groups on LinkedIn. Also other special interest divisions in your professional organisations. Register with a reputable recruitment agency and don’t forget the importance of local and regional groups as well.
Once the hiring manager/recruiter looks at your CV, you want the search to be over. The first 15-20 words of your resume are critically important. You need to make it perfectly clear in the summary that you have what it takes to get the job done.
Review the job posting carefully. Make certain that your qualifications, skills, and experiences match the job description perfectly in order to attract the attention of the hiring manager/recruiter.
Match the company’s needs with your skills by demonstrating your recent achievements in your resume. Target your strengths by creating a thoughtful list of core competencies that match the requirements of the open position.
The job interview is a little like the first date. You want to be on your best behavior and put your best foot forward. But you also want to be yourself, because your ultimate goal is to find someone who accepts you for who you really are. It’s not only about saying the right things and conveying the proper attitude. Job seekers need to think of job interviews as a two-way street. You are interviewing them also.
Job seekers often rush themselves into accepting a job offer to what they thought was their “dream company”. When looking for a job, it’s important to seek out companies where you will have the opportunity to flourish. Get as much information about the job and company you’ll be working for before you sign on the dotted line.
It’s not always about you. Maybe the company that didn’t give you an interview had hundreds of other applicants, and the budget for only one position.
Let’s face it, we all say no sometimes. The rejection might not reflect upon you in the slightest.
Don’t let a rejection scare you off of future attempts. You are more likely to succeed on your second or third try. And even if you don’t get the result you want, you’ll get feedback so you can keep improving.
For some of us, showing passion for a job during an interview comes easy. We naturally talk and gesture in an animated way and our enthusiasm shines through. However, for others among us, our usual way of speaking and interacting is more subdued, even when talking about something we’re excited about. Don’t be afraid to show off your passion for the job in the interview.
You might be afraid of coming off as desperate, but a little research can be the difference between wowing a hiring manager and coming off as too needy.
Although your CV is not a Valentine, you want the message to be just as strong.
Valentine’s cards have messages that are usually straightforward, leaving no question in the reader’s mind. Make the message from your CV equally as clear.
Joe Robbins is co-founder of CareerWise Recruitment. A graduate of the University of Limerick (Degree in Business Studies, 1985), Joe worked in the UK for five years where he specialised in materials management, production management and plant management for a number of companies.
He returned to Ireland in 1992 to become Operations Manager for a Cork-based start-up, FMC Automotive Division which was subsequently taken over by Snap-on Equipment. Joe managed the business re-location of this company to Shannon in 1997 before setting up CareerWise Recruitment in 1999.
He is a committee member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) Mid-West region, and a former Director and Vice President of the Shannon Chamber of Commerce. Joe is former Chairperson of the Sixmilebridge Camogie Club and current Chairperson of the Clare County Camogie Board.
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