Not only does a negative attitude repel human resources managers, but approaching the job hunt with a bad attitude will also limit your options from the start. You’ll be less likely to apply to jobs that might be a great fit; you’ll identify fewer possibilities.
We become focused on why we wouldn’t be considered, rather than what might make us an asset to this employer.
As you continue your job search, see if maybe these four attitudes that may be negatively impacting your results:
“I Send so Many Applications, and I Never Get the Job”
It’s easy to pay lip service to perseverance and persistence, but it’s hard to live it in real life when you’ve sent hundreds of applications without a response. But so many candidates approach the job hunt as a numbers game (the more applications, the more opportunities) that they ignore the role that quality plays in the application process. For every application that catches an HR manager’s eye, there may be five that go straight to recycling.
Submitting a high volume of resumes might not be a bad idea for your job search, but your goal must be to focus on quality instead of quantity. Customize your resume and cover letter for every job and make it clear how you would use your unique skills and experiences to meet the needs of this position. Include as many numbers and figures as possible to illustrate the value you bring to each position and proactively address each of your challenges.
“I’m Too Young to Get the Job”
You might see a new opportunity or feel passionately about the position or the company only to find out the position calls for a lot more experience at a much higher pay grade. Or you might be frustrated by the pressure to commit to your current job before you have the experience to know whether or not it is the right fit for you.
Relax. Every HR manager wants to uncover a diamond in the rough. Your interviewer isn’t necessarily looking for someone with a perfect experience match, but he or she does want to see indications that you are passionate, dedicated and competent. If you’re interviewing for jobs that require more experience or education, do what you can to focus on what experience and insight you do have.
Most important: talk up examples that have made you confident that you can do the job and identify ways in which you’ll continue to educate yourself and take on new opportunities.
“My Experience isn’t Specific Enough for This Position”
As your job search gets a bit longer, you might find yourself applying to jobs that don’t fit your experience. You may love the company, the industry or the role but feel outgunned about sharing your experience and your vision for the position itself. After all, they must be interviewing candidates with a perfect track record within this industry, right?
Don’t let this situation discourage you. It’s very rare that you will head into a job interview with 100 percent perfect experience for the job. Counter this experience mismatch by making your experience more specific to the job. Research the company thoroughly and reference how your experience and insight will apply to specific situations in this company’s future.
Show, don’t tell, how your experience makes you a great fit for succeeding in this position.
“My Work Record isn’t Great, So No One Will Hire Me”
If you have a work record with periods of unemployment or perhaps a dismissal or two and you don’t think ahead about how to explain what caused these gaps or terminations… you probably won’t get the job.
Why? Because no one wants to work with someone who isn’t self-aware, and no one wants to hire someone who doesn’t accept responsibility or grow from their experiences, good and bad. The only way to move forward after terminations and unemployment (layoffs generally do not negatively affect your work record) is to own up to your mistakes and express genuine learning from them.
To communicate your trustworthiness, it’s up to you to address your past failures proactively and counter the negativity that might exist. Provide character references that speak to your changed attitude and willingness to learn on the job, for example; then let the HR manager decide if it’s time for a second chance. Don’t make the decision for them by being negative, or by not facing your past.
Is something holding you back from a a successful job search?
If yes, remember that you’re in complete control of the most important part of the interview: your attitude.
Take some time to reflect on how to make this year more positive and more successful by reviewing your most common types of negative self-talk and countering them with actionable advice.
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Simply Hired!
About the Author: Sarah Greesonbach a career transition specialist and freelance writer. Her work has been featured on AOL Jobs, YAHOO! Small Business, and Brazen Careerist. She released Life After Teaching, the career transition book for teachers, in 2013, and provides content and strategic communication consulting services through Greesonbach Creative.