May 18, 2016

Job Search Getting Desperate? Avoid These 3 Mistakes


Let’s be honest. Quite frankly, the job search can suck.

When it comes to candidate selection, there are so many variables that are outside of the job seeker’s control.  Oftentimes, when the job search is not going as well as you hoped it would, it can easy to go from optimistic to desperate in a matter of days – if not hours.

If you become frustrated with your job search, your desperation may spur you to make some mistakes that will only cause things to get worse. When you’re feeling your lowest, make sure you avoid these three common mistakes:

1.  Applying for Anything and Everything

Perhaps you need a new job right now because the bills are piling up and your savings are rapidly dwindling (or totally gone). In this situation, many job seekers start applying for any and every open job they can find.

Unfortunately, this tactic usually does more harm than good.

When you apply to so many positions, you may become confused when a recruiter calls you to discuss your application. You ask, “What position was this again?” or “What company is this again?”

Trust me: No potential employer wants to hear those two questions (or any variations of them). They send the message that you are probably applying to tons of positions without fully understanding the organization and its opening. Employers want candidates who want to work for them – not candidates who want to work for anyone and everyone.

2. Paying for Unnecessary ‘Expert’ Assistance

There are some experts out there who really can help you in your job search, but you need to be carefully when handing over money for the services of resume writers and job coaches. There are some unscrupulous people in these fields who will charge exorbitant amounts of money in return for questionable services.

PhoneFor example, I know of a situation in which a transitioning military veteran received a call from someone claiming to be a “resume expert.” The “expert” tore about the candidate’s resume, and then he said he could guarantee this veteran the job of her dreams if she paid him $1,500 for his resume writing services.

Yes: $1,500 dollars for a resume! And a “guarantee”! How does that even work?

Paying for these services could prove to be a waste of time, energy, and money in the long run. They can also lead you to compromise your authentic voice as a candidate. After all, who knows you better than yourself?

Don’t be so blinded by drive for instant gratification that you begin forking over money for illegitimate services.

3. Throwing in the Towel

The job search can be stressful, frustrating, and riddled with obstacles. You may feel the urge to give in to your depression and give up on your search entirely. If you are in a position where you can take a break, regroup, refocus, and then continue your job search, it may be a good idea to do that – but don’t totally throw in the towel.

At the end of the day, attitude is everything. If you give up on your job search or yourself, that attitude will show when you do finally get that call from the recruiter. Stay optimistic, and accept the fact that the process may stink a little along the way. Think positively yet realistically, and you will be better prepared to handle the pressures that the job search can throw your way.

Finally, remember that the only person affected by you giving up on your job search is you.

Kristina Evans is the director of HR and recruiting for Exactor.

Read more in Job Search Advice

Kristina Evans is a veteran-turned-recruiter-turned-marketing content writer with Phenom People, a leading HR and recruiting technology company based out of Horsham, P.A. Over the last 5 years, she has recruited across multiple industries, including tech, education, manufacturing, and logistics. Kristina also holds bachelor's and master's degrees in human resources. She is passionate about and well-versed in the HR, talent acquisition, and recruiting spaces.