When you are searching for a new job, you are thinking of little else. You read your resume in an obsessive manner—trying to make sure you can stand out in a sea of hundreds of other white-page documents detailing the same type of information. You refresh the job boards over and over again. When nothing new pops up, you sigh, sit back, and head over to LinkedIn to see if you’ve made any new connections.
It’s exhausting—both physically and mentally. And while you are probably looking up the latest job search tips, it’s also important to know the truth about job hunting. These common myths can disrupt your search and prevent you from landing your next gig:
MYTH # 1: Your resume should be solely focused on your background, experience, and knowledge.
FACT: At its core, your resume provides the details of your professional career and your educational background, but it shouldn’t be a bland document that you mass produce in order to distribute to every employer you meet with. According to an article published on U.S. News and World Report, your resume should be updated for every position that you apply for. It should be designed as a marketing material that showcases your ability to perform the position that is available.
MYTH # 2: You are going to find your next job on the internet, so don’t bother with more traditional networking opportunities.
FACT: According to Quint Careers, only 5% of people get hired as a result of an ad on the internet. In order to secure your dream job, you need to network with industry professionals, participate in training programs, and get involved in your community. You are more likely to get hired as a result of a professional connection than by blindly applying to an ad on the internet.
MYTH # 3: Cover letters are obsolete.
FACT: It’s true that people have less time than ever before, and most employers want to be able to sift through applications as quickly as possible. However, cover letters are an important component of any job application. They provide you with an opportunity to tell a story, showcase your strengths, and market your personal brand. Write a solid cover letter for every job application. You won’t regret it.
MYTH # 4: The purpose of networking is to find people who will help you along the way.
FACT: Networking has nothing to do with personal gain and everything to do with building valuable, professional relationships. You should network with people not just because you want work for them or with them, but because you can both benefit from the relationship. Network with industry leaders who can help you increase career skills and introduce you to other professionals in your area.
MYTH # 5: It’s too challenging to change your career.
FACT: If you want to try something new, or you feel like it’s time to head in a new direction, you most certainly can do that. By focusing on training programs that allow you to broaden your skill set, you can make yourself marketable for any type of job.
Your career is a pivotal part of your life. If now is the time for a new position or company, then you need to take your job search seriously. These job search tips should help you get started, and soon you will be hearing the words you have been waiting for: “You’re hired.”