Unfortunately, the Internet has caused a lot of people to adopt a quantitative approach to their job search campaign. They pour and pray. They shoot out a huge stream of applications to openings posted on job boards and employers' Web-sites and pray that at least one will yield a response.
While making such an enormous effort may feel as if you're investing your time wisely, however, the results indicate otherwise. The quantitative approach is almost always a failure. Why? Because you end up applying for a job you don't want or can't get.
Employers are risk averse and very finicky. When you apply for a job in which you aren't very interested, they will sense your indifference and focus on applicants where they have a higher chance of success. And, when you apply for a job for which you aren't qualified, they will quickly decide you're a "trash applicant" and summarily discard your resume. In either case, all you've done is waste your time.
So, what's a better approach? Use a qualitative application strategy that I call select and succeed. It involves using two screens to evaluate job postings so you only apply for those you truly want to do and can actually get. As a result, you use your time wisely and optimize your chances of being hired.
The Select and Succeed Strategy
The first screen in the select and succeed strategy will help you determine if a job is an employment opportunity you want. To perform that evaluation, ask yourself five questions:
- What will you get to do?
- What will you get to learn?
- What will you get to accomplish?
- With whom will you get to work?
- How will your work be recognized and rewarded?
The second screen in the strategy will help you evaluate your chances of hearing back from the recruiter responsible for an opening. To perform that evaluation, ask yourself these five questions:
- Have you done the job before?
- Have you acquired the skills to excel at the job?
- Have you built a track record of excellence in doing the job?
- For which organizations did you do the job?
- What recognition did you receive for excelling at the job?
Using a pour and pray approach to job applications wastes one of your most precious resources in a job search: time. To make sure time works for you, therefore, use the select and succeed strategy. It will help you identify those jobs that you truly want to do and can actually get.
Thanks for reading,
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