Debunking Job Search Myths
Job searching is different today than it was in the past. Don’t let these myths about job searching hold you back.
Job hunting used to be so easy. Draft a résumé, open the newspaper classifieds for EMPLOYMENT, circle several jobs that sound interesting, call the number listed, undergo an interview, get hired, and get to work. Pretty straightforward.
My, how times have changed thanks to the Internet and digital technology. It’s a new ball game out there, and the old myths don’t really carry the weight they once did. In fact, these myths are dead, but if you believe them, you lessen the likelihood of finding the job that you love. Solution? Don’t believe them.
Myth: You can be anything you want. Great dream, but it’s a myth. You may want to be a doctor, but med school tuition isn’t available. You dream of being a world-renowned pianist and you’re still searching for the next note. On the other hand, we know what we enjoy and we tend to be good at the things we enjoy. No, you can’t be anything you want, but you can have a career doing something you enjoy.
Myth: A lateral move within a company is a career killer. You don’t get the new title, but titles don’t put food on the table. A lateral job move with a nice boost in the pay envelope is movement up the career ladder. Keep climbing.
Myth: Job hopping looks bad on your résumé. It can if you don’t explain it in your cover letter. If you’ve had five jobs in two years, any prospective employer is going to have some questions. No company wants to hire an employee who stays for six months before moving to a better job (with all that free training your company provided walking out the door). Maybe you were hired by a company that closed or moved, or changed operations and eliminated your job. Explain it and move on.
Remember, the old paradigm of staying put in one job for 25 years flew out the window in the last century. Today, employees are: 1) free to find a better job at another company; and 2) free to start their own businesses.
Myth: You have to find the perfect job. Usually, there is no perfect job. Most come with pluses and minuses. Searching for the perfect job will have you looking for something that was never there. Instead, evaluate both pros and cons, then take the one that sounds best. You won’t know for certain if it’s the right decision, but you’ll have confidence that the decision to accept the job was analytically sound.
Myth: You need to have a job before you can find a job. This may have been true when your dad started a career, or your grand-dad. It’s an outmoded concept. Having a job is no indication of your quality as an employee, and the applicant who’s been out of work for a year may have better skills. That’s why applicants become employees – they have skills the company needs. If you deliver those skills, your new employer won’t care that you’ve been unemployed. They know it’s a jungle out there, too.
Myth: Never submit your résumé if the company isn’t hiring. Another old tale we can do without. Submit your résumé to all companies within your business realm. It’ll be on file with HR, and when a new position opens up, bingo – your résumé may be at the top of the heap.
Get Out There
People aren’t reading the job classifieds in the newspaper as much as they once did. Job search opportunities are often easier to find using online general job sites and job sites specific to your industry.
Look for opportunities that fit your plan, and stop believing outdated myths.
The information provided is presented for general informational purposes only and does not constitute tax, legal or business advice. Any views expressed in this article may not necessarily be those of Nevada State Bank, a division of Zions Bancorporation, N.A. Member FDIC