Most candidates that I assist in my career coaching business move into the market with great reluctance. There is an assumption that the experience will be one of pain and entirely unrewarding. Attitude is by far the most significant reason for people failing when looking for work in the market.
This fear of impending death by strangulation manifesting itself as a non-opportunistic mindset has one significant drawback - poor career moves. So how do you change this mindset and get yourself into the market with an opportunistic mindset?
When career coaching I push all my candidates to change their attitude radically. These immediate changes include looking at all opportunities in the market, expand your efforts by using different go to market channels, don’t think of the job market as a deep hole with minimal opportunities and the list goes on. Here are some practical ways to change this bad habit.
Consider many roles - do not be too picky
When in the market I see many candidates looking at roles with a very skeptical eye.
Almost as if there is an assumption that their CV will always be considered and more importantly that the job spec advertise is precisely what the job entails. Wrong! The job spec that you see on various platforms is often out of date or has been put together by a recruiter or junior HR apprentice. These individuals very seldom know or understand the role and company. So you need to keep an open mind and assume that actually, the details in the job specification may only be a small part of the actual position. Also, you will be one of many candidates applying, so the fewer jobs you apply for, the less you will be considered for, not that if your CV is ideal that you will be selectively considered. I introduce this concept to my career coaching clients when conducting a CV rewrite.
Engage your recruiter as they would you
Most candidates I meet have a very negative attitude regards recruiters. However, recruiters will always engage you if they can place you and make money. Always!!!
When conducting my career counseling, I speak about this at some length; you need to treat the recruit as they treat you - opportunistically. Don’t get all upset at this first sign of a failed engagement and head for the hills. The recruiter also has a fantastic way of forgetting about you, don't take this personally - you know the market dynamics, recruiters cannot always remember everyone's details. So keep in contact - an email a month will suffice.
Widen your net regards looking for work in the marketplace
Without fail candidates when looking for work do not use enough go to market channels to sell their brand. Most candidates will apply using one or two ways, most common are recruiters and the second their network. Most candidates will also vest a small amount of time when engaging these channels. So engaging maybe two or three friends and recruiters. To little to late!
You cannot expect just to sit back and assume that these parties will run around and sell your CV to everyone.
Go to your interviews
I see so many candidates suddenly get very busy when the interview process starts. The thing to consider is that you are in the market and you are the applicant. Therefore when a recruiter or HR manager calls you for an interview move heaven and earth to go to the interview. No, HR managers do not work after hours, and no they do not work off-site. You will need to change your attitude and your dairy to suite the other party. Not accepting an interview invite is nine times out of ten an immediate regret. There is, however, one excellent reason for going to your interviews - its excellent practice.
The most considerable drawback of not moving into the market with this opportunistic mindset is that you will extend the time you are in the market, and most importantly you will have fewer better roles to consider.