Perhaps that sounds like a pointless question because surely if you knew the answer you’d actually be securing a job, right? Well, I’ve read a few articles recently about people who can’t find a job and sound completely baffled as to why not and it’s making me question whether or not they do know the answer.
If you honestly believe you’re qualified for the jobs you’re applying for but aren’t getting an interview then something must be going on. Perhaps your application isn’t good enough or perhaps they’ve had better candidates apply, either way you need to ask that question. First you need to ask the employers you’re applying with for feedback and then you need to ask yourself. Call it an honest reality check.
If it’s your application then you need to have an objective look or if you can’t do that ask someone else to have an objective look – preferably someone who sees hundreds of application’s a day like a career counsellor or a recruitment agent – not your best mate who will tell you its fine.
My second question of the day is: how well do you listen? I was impressed to hear that someone who came and spoke to one of our career consultants asked the consultant if they could record the advice given about their CV so they wouldn’t forget anything. Very smart. It can be hard to actively listen to someone since your mind can go off on several different tangents but you do need to focus and ask questions and take notes.
My final question of the day is: how well do you handle constructive criticism? A lot of us can be very precious about our job applications. We may have slaved away at them for ages or perhaps our CV always used to get us jobs in the past so why bother changing it? You need to be prepared for someone to say to you that they hate it. I’m sure they’ll phrase it better than that but you need to let go of your pre-conceived ideas that it’s a perfect application and be open to new ideas.
Even if you do just one of these things you’ll be in a better place than you were previously and on your way to answering my first question. Hopefully in time you’ll be able to say ‘yes I know why I can’t get a job but I’m taking steps to change this’. Music to my ears.