“Leave no stone unturned” is the usual rule for a successful job search.

Being in action is what works for you to find a job.  Stop searching and start finding by being out and about, visible, engaging, asking people to help you reach your goal, and applying for “right fit” jobs.

I urge my clients to follow up on every contact, to tell just about everyone they know what they are looking to do (using their Intention Statement), apply for jobs that pique their interest even if you have some questions about whether it really is the right fit, be active in social media (especially LinkedIn), and generally be out and about, in touch with people.

I’m advocating applying for jobs that you think might be a “right fit” for you.  The “spray and pray” approach most emphatically does not work. I read about people applying for 500 jobs and not getting an interview.  I know why.  They aren’t treating each job as a specific opportunity for them to use their skills, interests, abilities, experience and expertise.  

Yet, finding a job is in part about numbers.  The more jobs you apply for in your targeted area, the more chance you have of getting your “right fit” job.

Applying for jobs does three things:

  • keeps you in action and thus keeps your energy going
  • gives you experience with rejection so you can learn not to take it personally, and
  • provides opportunities for you to get interviews so you can practice interviewing.

Don’t do a recruiter’s job for them by eliminating yourself from the candidate pool – by not even applying.  When I recently conducted a search for a client, my first task was sorting resumes by YES, NO and MAYBE.  The easiest people to eliminate from the search were the people who never applied.  

You have NO idea what a recruiter brings to their review.  Yes, there is a job description. And that’s just the beginning of the conversation.  The rest of the conversation can only happen when you say “yes, I’m interested in talking about that opportunity you put out there.”

So what happens if you see a job you might like, or someone recommends you for a job – and you don’t submit your materials?  Two options:

  • submit an application immediately, or
  • own the fact that you don’t really want to apply.

A couple of common smokescreens people hide behind when they are not in action and applying for jobs are:  “I don’t have the time” and “I don’t think they’ll want me.”

You can always find the time if you really want the chance to explore the job. Even staying up until the wee hours is an option if you really are interested in the job.

And if you don’t apply, it means you don’t want to compete for the job.  That’s OK. It’s a choice. Don’t “should” on yourself.  Give yourself permission not to apply.  And then find a job you do want to explore further, and send in that targeted, personalized application.