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Seven job hunting habits you should quit
07 April 2017
If you’re embroiled in a lengthy job hunt, it can be easy to fall into some bad habits. Particularly if you’re currently out of work and you’ve had a few knock-backs, slipping into unproductive job seeking patterns can be common. In light of rejection and a seemingly endless job hunt, many candidates can lose sight of their goals and can stop pushing forward in their efforts to find that ideal position. If you’re currently job hunting, check that you haven’t fallen into these seven common bad habits.
1. You always use the same CV
When you’re consistently sending out your CV to different organisations, it can be very tempting to send the same, identical CV each time. Although your CV will always be fairly similar, it’s important to tailor it to each new application. Of course, you must always remain truthful, but you should make sure your CV best highlights the most relevant skills and experience for the role in question.
2. You always use the same cover letter
As above, don’t just write a standard cover letter and then use it time after time. Make sure you write a detailed cover letter that is specific to both the role and the organisation.
3. You’ve lost sight of your goal
It can be tempting to apply for anything and everything that’s vaguely relevant to your skill set, but this unfocused approach can be unproductive. Reassess your ultimate career vision; what do you want out of a role and what in turn can you offer? Consider your unique combination of skills and experience and think about the type of role that makes you excited. Make sure you’re applying for roles that are actually suitable for your skill set and that you’re actually keen to get.
4. Your approach is repetitive
Don’t get stuck in a rut when it comes to your job search by returning to the same old channels day after day. Cast your net a little wider and embrace new methods and resources to seek out opportunities. For example, don’t simply rely on one job board or publication, ask around and search online for different places to access vacancies. Don’t forget about social media, as many organisations now advertise vacancies through LinkedIn, Xing and Viadeo.
5. You don’t bother to follow up
If you’re using a recruitment agency, all your communication should be channelled through your recruitment consultant. Where possible, they’ll be able to track down feedback about certain applications. However, if you’re applying for several different jobs yourself, it can be tricky to keep organised and follow up after the interview stage.
If you’ve had an interview, it’s perfectly reasonable to politely follow up with the prospective employer - as this can show you’re enthusiastic about the role. We’re not suggesting you bombard an individual with calls and emails, but getting feedback where possible can be an important part of honing your interview technique.
6. You’ve lost your confidence
If you’ve suffered some rejections along the way, it can be hard not to become disheartened. Your confidence may have taken a knock, which in turn may be affecting your performance at interviews. Remember, in a competitive market, there may be other external factors at play causing you to lose out on an opportunity. For example, someone with a little more experience might have come along, which is no reflection on your performance. Try to maintain a positive, confident outlook – it will be noticeable to an employer.
7. You don’t prepare for interviews
If you’re securing lots of interviews then you’re obviously submitting strong applications. Therefore, don’t get complacent and fail to fully prepare for each one of them. Good preparation can make all the difference to your interview and could really set you apart from the competition. Fully research the organisation for which you’re interviewing, think about how your experience directly relates to them and prepare some answers to possible questions.