Everyone agrees that your resume, job search strategy and attitude should not be taken lightly. So to get your undivided attention I’m revisiting a favorite vehicle of mine from previous years; “At the Movies.” This time I chose films that are not well known to make my points and have some fun while doing it.
The Invisible War: Understanding and winning The Invisible War is a major problem for a great many job hunters, more so at senior and executive levels. This is because many jobs you want are invisible to you and all other job seekers since they are a part of the hidden job market. This is why you need to put yourself in a position to be found by internal and 3rd party recruiters representing these positions, since it is impossible for you to find them using conventional job search methods.
So how do you win The Invisible War? My suggestion is to make yourself as visible as possible on social media sites, especially LinkedIn, and let people know that you’re available and what you have to offer. Use these sites well to establish a unique brand and show off your personality and expertise.
The Imposter: This is something I used to see a lot of as a recruiter, business owner and in HR when I had to scan and read stacks of resumes and then chose and interview the people I felt best exemplified what I was looking for. Over 50% of the people I interviewed did not live up to the expectations I had based on the resume they submitted. Most often this was due to the fact that they, or their resume writer, felt the need to oversell their candidacy on the resume and therefore they came across as imposters during the job interview.
This is why it is so important that a resume be prepared by someone who understands what the employer is looking for and the questions they will ask based on what they read. Everything on the resume must be true, clear and on-point, and more important you need to be able to back it up during a face-to-face interview without hesitation or thinking up an answer on the spot.
The Guilt Trip: This is something job seekers use as an excuse for why they have not found a job after a long period of time. They tell themselves it’s the economy; it’s the city I live in; it’s the ATS; it’s the interviewer’s fault; it’s some type of discrimination etc. This is not to say these are not legitimate reasons why one did not land a particular job. Still, as they say “fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.” All excuses are correctable as long as you understand and accept that they are self-made impediments to your success and that corrective action is needed to overcome them.
The biggest Guilt Trip I confront is people who are not willing to invest in the tools they need to succeed and who listen to others who make them feel guilty for admitting that they need to pay for professional help. This is akin to the stigma that people attach to going to see a shrink to overcome a personal issue.
The bottom line is you do whatever it takes, especially if you’re unemployed or under-employed and you want to be in a better situation than you are in today as soon as possible.
Forget the excuses and perceived stigma that you and others think is real. You must dismiss any guilt feelings and accept that in many cases a short term financial loss is required to obtain your long term objective of getting a job with growth potential that you will enjoy working at. Guilt is only for the guilty, if you are honest and sincere there is no shame or guilt in worthwhile thing you do to get ahead.
As always I am happy to critique U.S. resumes and LinkedIn pages at no cost. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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