Top 10 Job-Seeker Mistakes

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CareerBuilder.com

job huntSo many people wonder why they have trouble getting a job. They go on interview after interview, thinking they did well, but then don't get a call back. This can lead to frustration, anger and depression. Most people do not know why certain people are hired, and why others aren't.

Following are 10 mistakes that many people make when searching for their dream job. Hopefully, after reading this article, I can help you avoid these blunders.


1. Mailing Unsolicited Resumes

Unsolicited resumes are garbage, scrap paper, wasted effort and job-search (junk), according to Jack Chapman, author of 'Negotiating Your Salary: How to Make $1,000 a Minute.' Frank Traditi, career strategist and author of 'Get Hired NOW!?' feels the same way. He says that people "treat their job search like a direct mail advertising campaign. They expect great response from blindly sending out hundreds of resumes. They wait by the phone and it never rings. They sit at their computer and never get a response."


2. Looking for 'Vacancies'

Many jobs are not advertised. Harvard's Mark Granovetter found that 43.4 percent of jobs are created for the applicant, often at the time of the interview. Traditi agrees. "It's no wonder that job seekers spend many months on their job search, or become so frustrated that they give up looking for work. They are looking in all the wrong places," he says.


3. Inept Networking

When people are beginning their careers, asking their friend to get them a job probably works. Once people enter the senior job market this strategy doesn't work anymore. Person-to-person networking is a highly effective way to land a job.


4. Trying to Go After Too Many Types of Jobs

My friend Jack Chapman put it best when he said, "Don't confuse a job market with a singles bar." You will not find a job by applying to everything and hoping one lands in your lap. You must pick certain targets and go after them.


5. Losing Your Motivation

It is hard to face rejection on a daily basis, which is what usually happens when people are looking for a job. However, you cannot let this rejection get you down or you will never find a job. If you want your job search to be successful, you must look at life with the glass half-full, not half-empty. The most successful people have a positive attitude, no matter what life throws at them.


6. Thinking a Recruiter Is 'Working for You'

Recruiters don't work for you. They are paid by the hiring company. Many people think that just because they send their résumés to a recruiter, somehow a job will mysteriously appear. The opposite is actually closer to the truth. Unless recruiters have a job opening that match your skills, you go into the computer or dead-letter file, along with thousands of others.


7. Not Preparing for Interviews

Prospective job seekers always tell me that as long as I get them in front of the decision-maker they will take it from there. Most people think the purpose of an interview is to "interview." Wrong. The purpose is to eliminate your competition. If you don't know how to do this, then you will not be successful in securing the position or money that you want. You can never be over-practiced or over-prepared for an interview.


8. Talking About Money Too Soon

Employers are quick to ask how much money you want. If your answer is too high, you are too expensive. If your answer is too low, you are not worth it. The key is to focus on value, not money. You should put off talking about money until after you have discussed your skills and their expectations.


9. Not Planning and Scheduling Your Time Properly

Most people spend more time planning vacations than they do their job searches. Like most things in life, if you do not plan properly, nothing will work out the way you want. Imagine if you did not have a plan or schedule for your personal time. You would never know who you were supposed to have lunch with, or what time your son's basketball game was on Saturday. Everyone needs to determine a schedule and have a plan if they want to find a job.


10. Not Asking for Help

There are many myths about conducting a job search alone. Society expects you to know how to find and land good jobs on your own, but no one ever shows you how. There are companies out there that have qualified people to help you with your job search -- you just need to do your research.


If you avoid these you just might be on the right path to landing your dream job. Good Luck!


Next: Top 10 Companies Hiring This Week >>


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