You’re getting ready for a job search. Resume perfect? Check. Contacts organized? Check. Networking plan? Check. LinkedIn on point? Check. So what’s going wrong? I’ve got some ideas for you.
1. Follow through and do exactly what you say you will do. I can’t even begin to count the number of times that a candidate has told me how perfect they are for the job yet failed to send me their resume. Even if your computer crashes and you can’t send it when you said you would, please do me the courtesy of letting me know. Chances are it will be just fine – but not unless you say something.
2. It’s clear that you’re in this just for yourself. I know this is totally counterintuitive, but we are people, too. If you make it completely obvious that you don’t give a rat’s a*% about us, it’s kind of hard to get invested in you. Maybe we are running another search for a hard-to-staff role like underwater basket weaver and you know the perfect person? Give us a hand and we’ll do the same for you.
3. If you have employment gaps in your work history, you need a ready explanation. Barring jail time and taking time off from work to eat bon bons, gaps can actually be okay. While they might not be great, there are a ton of reasonable explanations that we’ll accept including staying at home with kids, serving a mission, traveling, or caring for a parent.
As an aside, the best story I’ve heard was from a candidate that took 6 months off to save pythons in Burma. I might not share his passion for reptiles, it certainly made for a great conversation and set him apart from other candidates.
4. If you are truly not qualified, don’t waste my time. This one is hard to hear and I’m sorry about that, but it doesn’t make it any less true. If the position requires 5 years of management experience and you don’t have that, then do not apply. Our client probably has a good reason for this requirement. If you’ve never worked in the industry and are missing some core skills, again, don’t waste my time.
Remember that underwater basket weaving job? If you do not know how to weave, then we don’t need to see your resume.
5. Listen to your voicemails, always check your texts, and stay on top of our emails. Recruiting is a hard business and sometimes our client needs to hear a response ASAP. Maybe they have questions about a background check or are trying to schedule you for an interview. Whatever the case, the early bird catches the worm. And when we are competing against other recruiting agencies, the faster you respond to us, the better your chances. Let’s be realistic, you might not the only candidate we have up for the role you want.
Get your game face on and go get that job!