5 Toddler Behaviours Are The Key To Land Your Next Job
September equals to post-summer hangover for most of us. Leaving behind the sweet and always short vacation, we head back to the office. Hopefully, feeling rested and even a bit excited to catch up with colleagues, share about your holiday, and show some photos. However, as you put your first foot in the office, the hangover feelings kick in, with no mercy. The growing sense of stress, of being undervalued and taken for granted combined with your moody boss annoys the hell out of you, again. Welcome back.
So there you're doing pros-and-cons in your mind and wondering if the grass would be greener on the other side. You know, deep inside you that it's time to move. However, the countless job searching stories resembling Mission Impossible, without the cute Tom Cruise in it though, fill up your mind. If all those high-level professionals couldn't land a job, what makes me think I could?
It's this fear, which is so deeply embedded in ourselves by now, that leads us to make 'baby' mistakes. I call them 'baby' because we wouldn't even make them as toddlers.
Let me prove to you I'm not bluffing here :) I invite you to read the five situations below, which showcase common job search mistakes, and mark your sincere answer. Don't overthink it; they have no tricks here.
1) The school party day is around the corner, and you could go to the party with either of these people:
a) The kid whom you've seen asking all your friends out, before asking you out.
b) The kid who walks straight to you, to ask you, and only you, out
We all love to feel special, don't we? Instead of being the first kid applying to all available jobs, why not be the second kid who carefully selects the target, making them feel special? This doesn't mean you can't try more than once; you just need to be careful and polite enough to make each employer feel special. Fewer applications done with care will lead to greater results, I promise.
2) You're craving for some candies, but you don't have enough money. When meeting your friends, you convince them to sum up all your money to buy sweets. Unfortunately, even then, there aren't enough candies for all. If you'd really want to have a candy, what would you do?
a) Hope the other kids will see you're craving for a candy
b) Persuade the other kids of why you should have a candy
When we're really after something good, we all become persuasive, don't we? It's as if a warrior awakens inside us. Why don't we do precisely that when job searching? Why wait for the employers to see our value-added when we can be proactive, promote ourselves and show them we're worth it?
3) Santa just got you that toy, and now a bunch of kids you've never seen before want to borrow it. You'd…
a) Give it away, who cares! it's only your most precious toy
b) Say no with a smile, and continue playing with it
The same way you wouldn't trust your most precious toy to strangers, why do we trust our career to people who barely know us? How much can a head-hunter understand about you in a 5-10min conversation? Why not brush-out our confidence and self-represent yourself?
4) You're the front player. Which of these scenarios would you rather be in?
a) A pitch full of defenders
b) A clean pitch where you can just run straight to the gate and score
When searching for jobs, why do we go through processes full of gatekeepers instead of going straight to the hiring manager, the only person who sees/understands your value and has the power to hire you?
5) You're in the middle of an exciting scene when the TV suddenly switches off. You'd...
a) Take this as the end of the story, and go to bed obediently.
b) Nag while creating your own story of how would have happened next.
That's precisely what happens when you leave a space in your story and CV. Did you take a break? Fantastic, explain it! Don't let the mind of the reader wonder and fill the gaps with their imagination, because their view of the story most likely won't be accurate.
In a nutshell, if you marked 5 B, good news, the smart toddler is still inside you. Let's be 'less of an adult' and recover that fearless perspective to life and the self-confidence to speak up we had as kids. We're much more capable than we think/feel to secure the job we deserve.
Don't forget these simple stories next time the self-doubts kicks-in ;) And stay tuned for the next article with practical tips and techniques to help navigate the job market.
You might also enjoy reading of "Requiring A Working Visa Isn't The Reason Why You Are Still Unemployed", "How to get unstuck in your job search", and "How To Get A Job In Singapore As A Trailing Spouse".