Three Things that Could Trip You Up in Your Job Search

On your way to ending a long spell of unemployment, you may find yourself coming close to an offer, or at least a promising interview. Sometimes doors close unexpectedly after you thought things were going well. Or, you may learn a recent hire was made in your area of expertise and you were never in the running.

You can avoid such disappointments by taking a closer look at some of the common mistakes job seekers make, and focusing on strategies for avoiding those mistakes.

1. Limiting your opportunities

I often hear from job seekers who are spending all of their time online, applying for one position after another. People hire people, so get away from that computer screen and in front of decision makers.

Focus your job search on the skills you most enjoy using that are also in demand now. This means conducting some self-assessment on your strengths, learning to articulate your accomplishments convincingly, and researching to learn where you skills are most in demand.

Think laterally and expand your universe of opportunities by building a list of top companies in your target industry, regardless of current openings. Focus on getting introductions and building relationships, whether those companies are hiring today or not.

2. Overlooking opportunities

When someone mentions a short-term project, do you find yourself eliminating that from consideration because you are looking for full-time work?

Projects can fill gaps, and can evolve into full-time opportunities. Take the same approach to volunteering, where you can learn a new skill or translate your knowledge into paid projects or a full-time job.

Have you utilized every reasonable opportunity to broadcast your personal brand? One very talented professional I know had done a masterful job of updating her networking pitch and resume to market her new career direction, but somehow overlooked her LinkedIn profile. Once she updated her profile, she received an unexpected invitation to interview for an unpublished position that led to her next exciting job.

Coming Up

In the next post, I will talk in depth about how job seekers sometimes kill opportunities (the third thing). We will focus on what you can do overcome the obstacles that could come between you and the job offer!