Just about everyone who has been frustrated with trying to find a job has come across what we like to call the Big FEARs. Think of the word FEAR as an acronym, False Expectations Appearing Real.
Can you identify with any of these FEARs as you have been trying to find a job:
- You are afraid of ‘networking’
- You don’t think you have a network
- You see job descriptions and think you don’t have all the skills they want
- You have been told to find your passion and you have no idea what it is
- You dread being interviewed
- You are never going to find a job
- You lack a strategy to get a job so you just keep applying online
Why do we call FEAR False Expectations Appearing Real?
Fear can be paralyzing. You have heard of the expression ‘Deer in the Headlights’. When a deer is in the road and a car appears with their headlights blazing, the deer often looks directly at the car and then freezes instead of making a decision to get out of the way.
It’s the same way when finding a job becomes frustrating. Simply being overwhelmed with trying to find a job and having been unsuccessful in many attempts to get a job can cause you to be that Deer in the Headlights. You become frozen and unable to do anything to help yourself.
When the strategies you have been using haven’t worked and you don’t know what to do, you freeze up and just do nothing. The reality is, you do have choices that will help you increase your chances of getting a job.
The Dreaded Networking
There is so much buzz these days about the value and importance of networking. And it is true that networking is a really important part of your overall career strategy. But many people are anxious about networking. One of the fears is that they may feel that they don’t have a network at all, or a very small one. And that their network won’t be the right kind to help them find a job.
The truth is, at one point everyone starts with a network of just a few people. According to the work of University of Oxford anthropologist and psychologist, Robin Dunbar, the average size of a human network is about 150 people. However the number can range up to 1,500 if you include people you would recognize.
In our humble opinion, the key to networking is being ‘Real’. What does that mean? With the growth of sites such as LinkedIn, people can easily connect with anyone, anywhere. And social sites including Twitter and Facebook expand your opportunities to connect with people.
But ask yourself, how do I make my connections and networking ‘Real’? ‘Real’ means to be genuine in your relationship with your connections. ‘Real’ means to give first before you ask to receive.
We love this quote from Steven Covey:
“Seek first to understand, then to be understood”.
That means that you need to ask questions and listen first before you can start telling people about what you need or suggest.
We also love this quote from Zig Ziglar:
“You can have everything in life that you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”
Instead of focusing on Me, Me, Me, think first about their needs.
In our needs based personal marketing training programs we often refer to this as the WIIFT mentality – What’s In It For Them. By focusing on WIIFT you are building bridges that lead to relationships with other people. Forget the term ‘networking’ and start building your Real Person WIIFT Bridges!
Job Descriptions Have Skills Listed That You Don’t Have
Wow. This can be intimidating. You look on the internet for jobs you want. You read the job description. They are packed with a long list of skills. You don’t have all of them. Maybe you have tried applying online to some of these before and you either got rejected or you didn’t hear back. Or maybe you didn’t apply at all because you felt that you weren’t qualified. Do any of those scenarios fit you? Don’t let this FEAR hold you back.
There are many instances where you can get a job when you don’t meet all of the qualifications listed in the job description. Here’s what can happen on the employer’s side when they are putting together a job description. The HR department asks the hiring manager to give them the list of things they would like an employee to have for a position. The hiring manager puts together a wish list, including education, skills, experience and they give that to HR. Often the hiring manager is creating a wish list of everything that they want, including the kitchen sink. It’s not necessarily realistic. And it’s quite possible that almost no one would meet all of those qualifications, not even Superman.
You Find Out They Hired Someone ‘Less Qualified’
Have you ever been frustrated because you see someone who is ‘less qualified’ than you get the job? We hear that from people quite often. Those people didn’t let the job description qualifications stop them from getting an interview and getting hired. And you shouldn’t let them stop you either. We’ll add a caveat to that statement because some jobs require very specific skill sets that you need to have for a position. Typically jobs in engineering, some technology, and nursing, for example, fall into this category. But in our experience, the people who are looking to find a job know they need those qualifications.
The key take away here is that you can often get a job when you don’t meet all of the qualifications listed on the job description. Just don’t disqualify yourself before you even try. Leave that up to the hiring manager after they have met with you. They can decide then if you have what it takes to do the job and work within their company.
Find Your Passion: The Myth and the FEAR
How many times have you had someone tell you, “Just find your passion and you will find the job you love”? That sounds so romantic, doesn’t it? But what if you don’t know what your passion is? What if you are pretty sure that you can’t sit around waiting to find your passion because you need to find a job? What if you spend hours trying to think about what you passion is instead of getting out there finding a job?
There is nothing wrong with finding your passion. And many entrepreneurs feel a passion that leads to a successful business that they create. We aren’t talking about the successful entrepreneurs in this article. We are talking about you, and your need to get a job. Soon.
Sometimes, to find your passion you need to explore what options are out there. When you start to dig into those options and learn more about them, you may also start to feel passionate about those options. Instead of trying to figure out you passion all by yourself, see what’s actually out there. Remember that passion by itself will not pay the bills.
It’s also good to remember that passions can change. Isn’t it true that passions often develop because of experiences that you have? So don’t limit yourself to passively figuring out your passion. Get out there and see what’s going on in industries to see what floats your boat right now.
I Hate Being Interviewed
If misery loves company, then you at least know you aren’t alone when it comes to being interviewed. Most people hate it. It becomes a huge FEAR.
The question is, why do people hate interviews? From what we have experienced, people hate interviews for several reasons:
- They are afraid of the unknown questions
- They feel like they have been put in front of a firing squad
- They aren’t very good at carrying on a conversation
- They feel out of control
Because of technology, most job seekers have memorized the top 21 interview questions. You just have to google them to find these questions and thousands of people telling you how to answer them. But how does that help YOU? If everyone has memorized the answers to these top interview questions, and you do the same, then you are just following the crowd. Your chances of standing out at an interview and getting the job are teeny, teeny, teeny.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could think of the interview as a conversation and not a drill/grill session? Would your interview fears diminish if you knew that you could actually have a discussion with the hiring manager about the needs of the job and company? (And not have to be asked, “What is your greatest weakness?) Remember the WIIFT that we mentioned earlier? It’s going to play a role in helping you overcome your FEAR of interviewing.
You Have a Job Title and a Full Time Job
Even if you are currently unemployed, you still have a full time job. You are in the business of marketing YOU. You job title is Real Person Marketer. You need a strategy and a schedule. And you need a commitment to following both.
As former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher said,
“Plan your work for today and every day and then work your plan.”
How Will I Ever Get a Job?
In our previous article, ‘Why You Don’t Want to Apply for a Job on Job Search Sites’, we talked about the definition of insanity – doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.’ If you have been trying unsuccessfully to get a job by finding jobs online and applying through job boards, then you are probably feeling a little wacko right now. And you may be wondering if you are ever going to find a job. There is another way.
Instead of sending your resume off into the black hole where you have no control over who sees it and you have no way to distinguish yourself from the crowd of job seekers, there’s another way to find your next job. You can eliminate the FEAR of uncertainty and insanity by following a process that you control. It’s a process that doesn’t rely on applying through online job boards. And it’s a strategy that puts you in much more control over the entire process and outcome. Instead of being a faceless piece of paper full of bullet points and keywords, you will be a real person, ready to solve the WIIFT’s in your next job and for your next employer.
CareerFaithful.com is focused exclusively on helping people get a job by showing them how to become consultative and ‘real’ in their approach using The Real Person Job StrategyTM.