If you’ve been stuck in the unemployment rut and can’t seem to find a way out, make sure you’re not making one of these seven mistakes.
- You’re Not Networking Enough
The majority of jobs are filled through networking and word of mouth. It’s important that you take initiative, rather than waiting around to apply for jobs after they’ve been posted online.
“Make a list of the top 10 places you would like to work and reach out to them,” says Jenny Schroth, director of career services for Globe University. “Call and set up informational interviews, or connect with someone on LinkedIn who works there and ask for a tour or to meet with them to learn more about the company.”
Schroth says networking is the key to finding your ideal position.
“In today’s digital age, jobs posted online are much more competitive,” she says. “It’s easy to sit behind a computer. Get out in the community and meet with and talk to people. Attend career fairs, professional organization events and chamber events.”
- You’re Shooting Too High or Too Low
It can be hard to know exactly where you fit in the workforce, but Schroth says you should organize your list of ideal careers and be willing to work your way up.
“You should have a list of ‘reach places,’ or companies that are more favorable but harder to get into,” Schroth says. “You should have another list of places that are easier to get into, and another list of back-up places that may be stepping stones to get where you want to be.”
Schroth says you may have to take an entry-level position now to get where you want to be in the future, but you also shouldn’t be discouraged when a job description calls for more experience than you might have.
“You should still apply because you never know,” she says. “If a position requires a minimum amount of experience, it usually means that’s what the ideal candidate would have, but you can show how your experience in the classroom, in an internship and other jobs adds up to qualify you for the position.”
- Your Experience is Outdated
Don’t get passed over because your experience isn’t up to par. There are ways to stay up-to-date with your skills, whether it be earning a certification, continuing your education or gaining experience to add to your resume any way you can.
“Even if you’re not working, you should be doing something,” Schroth says. “Volunteer, even if it’s just for a few hours a week. If you’re studying to be a vet tech, get involved at an animal shelter. It’s important that potential employers see that your skills are relevant and current.”
- You’re Not Able to Sell Your Value
First impressions count. Make sure your resume and cover letter are well-written and tailored to the company and position. As for the interview, Schroth says it’s your opportunity to sell your value.
“Think of the interview as your commercial,” she says. “Be passionate, excited, confident, and showcase your skills and abilities to the employer.”
- You’re Taking the Shotgun Approach
Schroth says you shouldn’t wait until you graduate to begin applying for jobs and expect to get something right away. She suggests beginning to network six to nine months prior to graduation.
“Create those relationships with people in companies you would like to work for early on,” she says. “They may not have an opening now, but stay in touch, and down the road when they’re ready to hire, you’ll be at the top of their list.”
- You’re Unprepared
If you land an interview, it’s essential you go into it prepared. Schroth recommends doing in-depth research about the company, its mission, values, customers or clients and competitors. You should also be ready to talk about what you can do for them.
“Be prepared to answer questions about your strengths and weaknesses, anything on your resume and why you want to work for that particular organization,” Schroth says. “Be able to give a variety of examples about your experience, too.”
- The Job Search Has You Depressed and Desperate
Although the job hunt can be discouraging, don’t become desperate. Schroth says it’s important to make sure you remain positive and do everything you can to land a career that’s right for you.
“Start early, have patience, follow up and show how you’re a fit for the company and its culture,” she says.
To learn more about Globe University and career support services visit www.globeuniversity.edu/about-us/career-services.