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7 Job Search Myths in a Challenging Economy

04.06.09   |   Job Search & Career   |   Amanda Musto, Marketing Manager at Treeline Incorporated

 

In these tumultuous and unpredictable times, many job seekers find themselves frustrated and doubtful that their searches will ever prove to be successful. As the financial markets fluctuate, so do our emotions and beliefs. Many of us experience the F.U.D.S. (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt and Suspicion). The F.U.D.S. carry over into many parts of our lives; a job search is no exception. Searching for a job is never easy. If you've ever looked for a new career opportunity, you're familiar with the emotional highs and lows of this roller coaster-like experience. Regardless of your situation, do not let a challenging economy distract you from your goal, or allow common misperceptions to derail you. It is not the market that will hinder your job search, but a pessimistic attitude that will stop you from landing a new position.


Here are seven Myths of the Market. Block them from your mind. Don't fixate on the challenges, focus on the possibilities.

1. Myth #1: There are no jobs. There are jobs out there. At Treeline, we see them everyday and we help people find them. As an executive search firm, we know the job market intimately. Our consultants are on the front lines, and can tell you first hand that people are finding new jobs.

2. Myth #2: A job search is harder in this economy. Regardless of the economic climate, a job search is always challenging. Change is difficult, but there's no better time than right now to recreate yourself. Leave your comfort zone behind. Identify companies that offer you the career progression and culture you are looking for and create your own opportunities.

3. Myth #3: The most qualified candidate will get the job. Without a doubt, companies are scrutinizing candidates' resumes much more closely. Let's face it: in this competitive market, they can afford to be more selective. With a much larger pool of qualified applicants available, companies have the luxury of interviewing only those with the most desirable skill sets. What many people don't realize is that their qualifications account for only part of the equation. What's the other part? Hiring managers hire people they like. Possessing the right skills is obviously essential, but fitting into the company culture is also critical. You may be the most qualified, but if you don't share the company's vision and values, you won't get hired.

4. Myth #4: If a company is not advertising its job openings, then the company is not hiring. Many companies do not advertise because the response can be so overwhelming. Instead, they employ executive search firms like Treeline to streamline the process, or leverage their own employee referral network. If your dream job isn't advertised, don't count yourself out. Don't be afraid to reach out to companies that interest you. Introduce yourself. Forward your resume. You may be surprised to find out they'd like to interview you.

5. Myth #5: I don't have enough contacts to network effectively. Of course you do, but you may not be networking as effectively as possible. Whether you're introverted or extraverted, networking is a vital skill that you must master when job hunting. Start by creating a list of all your friends, coworkers, family members, neighbors, etc. Once you've created this invaluable database, get out of your comfort zone and start dialing. Talk to people about your current employment scenario. Let them know you're looking for a new job. After making your first five phone calls, don't be surprised to find a supportive group of people trying to help you. Whether they introduce you to the hiring manager at their company or forward your resume to a friend, you'll be surprised at how hard they'll work for you!

6. Myth #6: The Internet will get me a job. The Internet is a powerful resource that can assist in your search, but by no means will it get you a job. Only you can land that job. Use the Internet to post resumes, research companies, and identify positions of interest. Don't forget that the Internet is also an incredible tool for networking. Social network sites including LinkedIn and Facebook are effective ways to find new opportunities.

7. Myth #7: My resume should fit on one page. A resume should fit on one to three pages. The key to an effective resume is to ensure it is a concise yet comprehensive snapshot of your career. It should include your complete employment history in a way that showcases your accomplishments in a quantifiable way. What goals did you achieve at each company? What are the intangibles that make you a great employee? A good resume should help tell your story. Keep it simple and easy to understand. Make sure interviewers can quickly assess what you have done in your career.

Don't fall victim to these types of myths or the negative stories that are being whispered in your ear. It is your search, so take charge! These are challenging times. Show the world what you are made of. You can do anything you want if you put your mind to it.

What other myths have you encountered in today's market?

 

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