W.T.F. Jobseekers? Get Real

I know when you’re looking for a job or out of work, you need all the support you can get. You need encouragement and praise to keep motivated, but sometimes what you really need is some harsh love, this could be one of those occasions.
In my twitter stream recently, I’ve got increasingly frustrated by some comments from job seekers and some of the advice being giving. Here are the top 9  “W.T.F.” comments you really should ignore:

1: If the A.T.S. is too complicated, asks too many questions or takes too long to complete I drop out.

Reality: Many A.T.S.’s suck
Reality: The bigger the drop out the more chance you have of getting the job
Reality: You will not get 100% of the jobs you don’t apply for.
It might be frustrating but you need to stick with it. Employers understand mistakes, and if you are confused by the ATS, ask for help!

2: I only connect with people who send me personalised invites or who I know.

Reality: The number 1 source of hire is referral.
Reality: You never know who knows who till you are connected
Reality: The wider your network, the more chance it will deliver a job
Connect with everyone you can at first invite or finding, you can weed them out later if they are spammers or undesirable.

3: I avoid connecting with recruiters unless they have a job for me.

Reality: Recruiters get people jobs.
Reality: If there is anyway a recruiter can place you they will, it’s how they eat. They are however, not the welfare office or career coaches.
Reality: If a recruiter has a job for you, they will hunt you down.
Make as many recruiter contacts as you can. Don’t expect instant feedback and make it easy to work with you by being friendly and having a clear idea of what you want. Don’t give them a hard time if they have nothing for you now, and DON’T as was suggested, put the phone down on them if they don’t know a job/company inside out.

4: It’s pushy to ask for the job

Reality: Many hiring managers take not asking as not interested.
Reality: If you don’t ask, you won’t get. (My mum taught me that.)
Reality: The offer only goes to someone who is perceived to really want it.
Always ask: 1: What the next step is? the timetable for that? Any reservations they have about you and if you can have the next step.

5: Only interview for jobs and cultures that fit what you want.

Reality: Most job descriptions do not match the real job.
Reality: Job descriptions are often changed to fit the candidate once strengths are identified.
Reality: If you don’t go to the interview you will never know.
Don’t be the one that got away. Go for the interview!

6: Lock down your Facebook privacy settings.

Reality: Recruiters are increasingly sourcing candidates through Facebook.
Reality: Your privacy settings are not really private anyway. there are lots of ways in for the really determined.
Reality: The person who can refer you for a job is probably not a college friend or family member.
Clean up your profile if you’re worried about it. Talk to your friends on the phone. Complete your professional details on Facebook. Sign up for BranchOut, they just got a $6mn investment and the networks/job platform is growing quickly. Make it clear you want a job.

7: I don’t prepare for interview because I want to be natural

Reality: The more you prepare the more confident you will feel.
Reality: The more you know about the company and the job, the better questions you can ask and the closer you can present “fit.”
Reality: Hiring managers are impressed with prepared candidates who tell them why they want the job.
Success at interview is 80% in the preparation, only 20% in the presentation.
8: Why should I chase feedback. if they want me, they will contact me.
Reality: The one who gets the job is usually the one who wants it most.
Reality: Every contact reminds the hiring manager of you.
Reality: The jobs not filled till someone starts.
Follow up, communicate and ask for feedback. Express at every stage that you are interested. It’s not their job to hire you, it’s your job to get hired!

9: E-mail is the best way to communicate.

Reality: E-mails get ignored.
Reality: You can counter objections in a call
Reality: You can project enthusiasm in a call.
PICK THE PHONE UP. E-mail is for confirmation and cowards. Don’t be the latter!

That is  the end of my rant. please add your own comments, examples of bad advice that make you say “W.T.F.” and anything else you want to add. Don’t forget to subscribe to this blog to keep getting tips. You can do so on the e-mail button. It’s quick and simple.

Be social in your job search,

Bill

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About @BillBoorman
“I have always worked in and around recruiting as a Recruiter, Trainer, Operations Director, Consultant and Coach. I have spent more than 27 years in this industry which sadly qualifies me as a veteran. (substitute old!) During this time I have worked in most markets and have been responsible for the full H.R. and Training function for a recruitment business that grew from 6 to 147 branches. I have implemented I.T systems, designed performance management and appraisal systems among most other things. Over the last 5 years I have been working as a consultant and trainer to growing recruiting firms across Europe. The last 18 months saw my introduction to social media and social recruiting. I started with 50 connections on Linked In (mostly friends) and grew from there. signing up for a twitter account in March 2009 changed everything, as I was given access to a fantastic network worldwide. In Feb 2009 I was honoured and surprised to be ranked in the HR Examiner/trakkr index as the 6′th most influential on-line recruiter in the world. Despite this accolade, I still consider myself to be very much a social media amateur (there are lots more in my network that are much wiser and cleverer. I’m now best known as @BillBoorman on twitter, and have been described a twitterholic that never sleeps, omnipresent and even a whirling dervish! (Thanks @fishdogs.) In September 2009 I attended an event in Toronto (Recruitfest 09) that had a major impact on me. This was my first stint as a track leader at an unconference. I was so taken by this open format that I brought it back to the UK and with Geoff Webb, (Radical Recruit), launched #trulondon and other #tru events. We are in the process of taking these events on a global tour stretching from london to china over the next 2 years. I love the buzz these events create, and enjoy them as much on-line as off it.

4 Responses to W.T.F. Jobseekers? Get Real

  1. OneJillian says:

    Many of us need this reality check!

    A comment on #6: I don’t think FB is necessary, so much as an online networking presence. If work history, skills and samples can be found of a personal web site or Linked-in, FB is not a necessary addition to your public online profile.

    A comment on #9: it is almost universally (at least in the states) announced “No Phone Calls, email or online app form ONLY, please.” In fact, many hiring managers have stated that a phone call will hurt the chances of interview or job offer.

  2. Ronnie Ann says:

    Terrific post (I’ve already tweeted it twice) and great reality check, as OneJillian says. Thanks for telling it like it is, Bill!

  3. HRMargo Rose says:

    I especially like number 1. Great points of view here. P.S. I just like the look and feel of this blog better than the other.

    Good show,

    Margo Rose
    Founder & CEO of HIreFriday

  4. Kimba Green says:

    I am a jobseeker & you are so right on everyone of your points! There are many times I need a swift kick in the pants to get going & not have someone tell me it will be OK & pat my head! Things are not easy & it is a struggle but don’t make it worst by shutting down you opportunity. If your search isn’t working try something different instead of saying this isn’t working. Now I am done with my rant! Thanks!

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