Monday, August 24, 2009

I've Decided that Job Searching is like Dating

Yup, I think they are one in the same. Dating. Job Searching. 

I invite you to think about it. 

To begin with in both you have to put yourself out there. This can be the scariest thing.  You fear rejection.  You are nervous.  Do you look alright? Will the person like you? Will they find you to be the person they are looking for?  Is this the "position" or "mate" of your dreams? Is this what you've been waiting for? (See). Which one am I referring to?

The Steps in Securing a Job:
  1. The Search: You check out online sites like Monster Jobs, Career Builder, Craig's List.  You ask your families and friends to get the word out about what you are looking to do.  You find jobs that so wouldn't do. You find jobs that are alright. You find jobs that sound fantastic. You find the perfect job.  
  2. The First Impression: The resume. Okay, we all have a standard one but when you see that job that you know is the perfect job it calls for a glance over and some updates.  You tailor the resume to make yourselves sound like the perfect candidate.  You include more job duties in points under your internships and former careers.  You make sure the font is professional, a bit serious, and with some individual flair.  The cover letter.  Oh, you knock that thing out of the park.  You tell of expereinces and paint the picture that you are beyond perfect for this job.  You finish off the final paragraph again expressing your interest and willing to take the next step in ensuring this position. (An in-person interview, more information, a phone call, etc.)
  3. The Interview: (Cuz, you are going to get it).  First impressions are very important.  You pick out the outfit.  You want to be again serious, professional, stand out (but in a good way) and you don't want to come across too weird, so we go with standard hair style, simple jewelry, clothing in the colors of black, brown and grey.  Maybe tan, if it is in the summer. Once the look is achieved, you move on to research.  You know the website back and forth.  You know the job description better then the back of your hands. You have questions ready to ask.  You go over in your heads how you are going to answer those typically interview questions.  
  4.  The Last Few Minutes: First impressions are important but how you "close" on this interview can very well determine if you get the position or not.  Here is what you hope has happened so far: the interviewer has nodded in favor of your answers, you like the work environment, others in the office look fun, what has been told about what you would do is so up your alley, you've asked questions that impress the interviewer and you have not messed up on a single question.  No foot in mouth moments.  The interviewer begins to thank you for your time and coming in for an interview.  You thank them.  You then express extreme interest in the position.  You let them know your available by phone or email to answer any additional questions and that you would love to be considered further for the position.  Tell them your ready to take it to the next step. You even go ahead and plan the follow up.  That afternoon or perhaps the next morning, you send a thank you note for the interview.  This can be by mail or email.  In this note, you keep it short and simple.  "Thank you. I am very interested.  After our meeting and discussion I am further convinced I would be a great fit at __."
  5. THE Wait.  This is for sure the worst part.  You sit by the phone.  You check your emails daily, hourly and on the hour to see if there is any word.  You imagine yourself getting the job, how your life might pan out as the newest employee of ___.  You have to factor possible moves, how you will get to work, possible new insurances and more. But then a "couple" days go by and there is no word. You begin to rethink everything in the interview.  They said they would make their decision in the next couple of days.  What is a couple? You wonder if you said something wrong.  You think about any flaws you might have and if the interviewer picked up on them.  You think about every little thing.  You were just five minutes early to the interview or were you two minutes and does that make a difference?
  6. THE ANSWER: It can be positive or negative.  It can be what you want and it can be what you don't want.  And you have no control.  You take what the answer is and you accept.  I truly hope it is positive.  I hope the position is offered to us all.  But in the horrible outcome that it isn't, you are numb.  The time, energy, excitement all invested into this one position seems wasted and lost.  People tell you that another one will come around, it just must of not been the right fit, and people tell you to cheer up.  Here is where you get back on the "horse" and take it right back to step 1.  Hoping the next time you reach step 6 you don't have to go back.  I know I do.  
The Steps in Securing a Mate:
  1. The Search: You put the word out.  Friends set you up.  You might join eHarmony, Match.Com, FreindFinder, etc. You might even get some help from your mom.  (Warning, oh boy!) You get some feedback for some possible dates.  One possible mate is disgusting and you would have to be desperate.  One possible mate sounds alright.  And then one possible mate sounds out of this world amazing and the person you've made up in your head. You've found them. 
  2. The First Impression: Again, this is important in any setting but on a blind date or first encounter this is key.  If you met online your profile has already been built to perfection with including everything that is great about you.  Your picture has been strategically picked and is one that captures your smile and from your best angle.  If this is through a friend, you grill the friend making sure the friend has disclosed great facts about you and in turn you ask to know all about your date.  You carefully choice an outfit to wear that sends all the right messages, which depending on what your looking for can be all types of different.  However, no matter who you are you make sure to pick out pieces from your wardrobe you feel at ease in and that bring out the best in you.  
  3. The Date: You look fabulous.  You've done your research and know what your date likes.  You ask questions to get to know more and answer your dates questions reveling all good about yourself.  You're having fun and laughing.  You really enjoy yourself. The date is going terrific. 
  4. The Last Few Minutes: Alright, how you "close" on a date can send signals of "I want a second date" or "I would rather have spent the evening playing with my cat".  Make sure you go for the second date with telling the suitor how much you enjoyed this and how the two of you should do it again sometime.  Expressing interest goes a long way.  A girlfriend of mine says she always has something in mind that she mentions at the end of the date to ensure a second by giving the clue that the two should go see that movie they both had spoken of earlier or a local band is playing two nights from now that I really think you would enjoy. You could try that. But key is to express interest. 
  5. THE WAIT: Again, the worst part.  Those that read Cosmo might have heard about the 3 day rule of it is best to wait 3 days and then call to set up another date.  Maybe not everyone follows that but the thought might go through your head.  You hear nothing for a few days.  You check your text, emails, voice mail to make sure a message hasn't come through.  You consider calling the suitor. But you wonder if they didn't want to spend time with you again.  You go through ever little thing in your mind and question it all.  Did you laugh enough at their jokes? Did you not act like you were having fun?  Were you having too much fun? Did your breath smell? Oh no!
  6. The Answer: It can be positive or negative.  It can be what you want and it can be what you don't want. You might never hear from the person again.  You might try to contact them but they make excuses for not attending another meeting or never return your calls. But I truly hope that many of us never experience that.  Feeling reject after a date that we think went so well is tough.  You made the effort, you had fun and you wanted to give it another go. People tell you there are more fish in the sea, that don't worry you'll met another, or someone better will come along.  Meanwhile, you have to go back to the search and begin the steps again in hoping to secure a mate.
Did you get the similarities? I know it is kind of strange but both have quite a lot in common.  But ask anyone who is currently involved in one or the other and they will tell you it is time consuming and tough.  So give your unemployed or dateless friend credit, they might be on the waiting stage!

{Stay Tuned}.

1 comment:

Steffanie said...

Does this mean you are easily persuaded in a job search as well?