7 Ways Job Search and Dating are Similar (and how to set yourself up for job search success)Jul 28, 2020
"Job Interviews are like first dates – good impressions count, awkwardness can occur, outcomes are unpredictable." —unknown
I hope you and your family are enjoying your summer while continuing to stay healthy and COVID-free.
As I work with clients—whether I’m sharing effective job search and interviewing strategies or answering their questions—I often use analogies and humor to get my point across. It dawned on me recently that I am using the analogy of “think about X as being very similar to when you were dating.”
Apparently I use that phrase a lot! In this month’s newsletter, I’ll be sharing 7 ways that job search and dating are similar, and what you can do to ensure you set yourself up for success in landing a new position … sooner than later.
Enjoy reading this month’s newsletter! As always, I welcome your feedback as well as suggestions on topics that would be valuable to you in future newsletters. Please email me at [email protected].
Please stay safe and healthy! We’re in this together, and if everyone plays their part in wearing masks and practicing social distancing, we’ll all get through this together.
P.S. I invite you to share my newsletter with anyone you feel could benefit from receiving valuable content and insights specific to mid- to senior-level executive job seekers/career changers.
P.P.S. To learn more about Your Call To Action and how I help my clients go from being frustrated, burned out, stuck in a toxic environment or worried about being downsized, to feeling excited, valued and re-energized at work (and in their life) again, take a look around my website.
7 Ways Job Search and Dating are Similar (and how to set yourself up for job search success)
Be clear about what you’re looking for and what’s important to you
Like dating, it’s important to be honest with and true to yourself with regards to what you’re looking to do and what’s important to you in your next career move. What was important to you (or what landed in your lap) 10, 20 and even 30 years ago is much different than what you’re probably seeking now. Our life experiences as well as where we’re at in our life and career can make a huge impact on this.
“You’ve got to be in a bad relationship to really understand
what a great one is.” —Steve Harvey
Take the time to really think through what will set you up for success in your next role. What are you passionate about? What do you truly enjoy doing and you do it well? What type of environment or culture do you thrive in that energizes you? What qualities did your best boss have and whose management style is in sync with what you want/need? Download my free resource to help you gain clarity—trust me, you’ll thank me later!
Date around before narrowing the field
In today’s climate, it’s not unusual for interviews and job search related conversations to stall, derail or hiring companies to go radio silent on candidates. Too often, I have seen clients lock into one or two hot opportunities and stop their search with hopes one will work out. I encourage them (and you!) to proactively continue networking and uncovering new opportunities until you've accepted a written offer.
At some point, much like dating, you’ll gain traction, “chemistry”, and proceed through multiple rounds of interviews with a couple of companies while others drop off or companies go dark (ghost you). Timing is everything, and it’s important to consistently keep your eye on your goal and continue to keep your foot on the accelerator.
Watch for cues
In any business situation—as in dating—it’s important to continually watch body language, listen to what’s said and what’s NOT said, as well as the tone and inflection of the people you’re speaking/meeting with.
During the interview process, I encourage you to add two additional cues that are just as important as when dating:
- Chemistry – Could you see yourself working with everyone you’re interviewing with? Does the company culture, energy and values align with yours?
- How well they treat you – Do they follow up with you when they say they will? Are they open and transparent with you? Do they communicate with you frequently, encourage you to stay in touch, and/or return your calls or respond to your emails in a timely fashion?
Don’t come across desperate
There’s not much more to say on this topic then what Darrell Curney shares: “Desperation works in job search as well as it does in dating.”
We’re in challenging times, and, understandably, many are in a tight situation where they need to find a full-time position quickly. If you’re in this situation, I caution you to try not to let your emotions get the best of you and be sure you ‘check them’ before you have networking conversations and interviews, or send outreach emails, etc.
Some helpful tips include listening to upbeat music before you have any conversations, write ‘breathe’ and ‘be positive’ on a sticky note and place it by the camera on your laptop (for Zoom calls) or write it at the top of your notepad for phone calls. While you're listening to others talk, be sure to take some deep breathes and remind yourself to be positive and as ‘calm and collected’ as possible.
Be yourself, yet choose your words wisely
During your job search, and especially during interviews, it’s important to be yourself and have integrity with what you’re saying; however, be mindful to choose your words wisely, and not be too verbose or share too much information that could potentially eliminate you from the process. Less is more!
In addition, be sure you frame your responses and questions in a positive light. Being mindful of this will have people looking at you as a ‘glass half full’ type of person vs. a Debbie (or David) Downer. People tend to be drawn to and want to work with others who are positive, uplifting and have a ‘can-do’ attitude.
Be curious, show interest in others
Many job seekers fail to realize that interviewing is a 2-way street! While the hiring company has the ‘upper hand’ (they are the ones who invite you to an interview, determine whether you move onto the next step in the process, and, ultimately, extend an offer to you), it’s critically important that you also interview them in a very conversational style to ensure this is the right position, the right company/environment, and the right people for you.
I encourage you to come prepared with a list of questions tailored to the individual(s) you’ll be speaking with.
TIP: Since the HR representative is usually the first person who’ll speak with (and they often act as a gatekeeper), be sincerely curious and show interest in them, as well. You can learn a lot about a company by asking them what they like most about working at X, what the culture is like, why the position is open, etc.
Asking compelling and relevant questions and being curious also show you are interested in the company and the people—who knows, they might just be your next ‘work family’.
The best advice I can give mid- to senior-level executives who are actively seeking a new position at another company is to be visible and consistently reaching out to your network, continually meet new people who can also help in your search, and proactively reach out to executives at target companies on your list.
Be strategic in your approach, line up coffees/lunches/15 minute phone conversations, and have productive conversations that will help move your search forward.
Posting or responding to posts on LinkedIn (and in LinkedIn groups) is another way to be visible, just be sure you are providing value.
Personally, I don’t recommend broadcasting on LinkedIn or other social media that you are out of a job or looking for a new position. I feel it potentially cheapens your brand. If you were looking to meet Mr./Ms. Right, would you broadcast it on social media?
If you are a mid- to senior-level executive and motivated to find your next opportunity (or know someone who is), I'd love to speak with you to better understand your situation, what you're looking to do, and see how I can be of help.
(Please share this with anyone you know who is looking to make a job change or currently unemployed and could benefit)
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Interested in learning more about the VIP Day? Schedule a complimentary exploratory call to see if this is a fit for you.
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Prior to launching Your Call To Action in 2015, Audie spent over 30 years in technology sales and sales leadership roles working with C-Level and other key stakeholders at Fortune 1000 companies utilizing a consultative and value-based approach to addressing her clients' needs.
Due to the evolving nature of the technology industry, it was common to change companies due to M&A, new leadership coming in and bringing their own team, corporate restructurings, or as a way to advance one's career. Audie became very proficient — and successful — in landing multiple offers each time, and was frequently complimented on how she stood out (in a good way!) from other candidates throughout the interview process.
She leverages her business acumen, consultative and value-based approach to sales, and professional coach training (ICF Certified) in working with clients and delivering her proven methodology, strategies and tips for successfully landing a new position (after all, one needs to sell oneself, right?).
Audie is intuitive, nurturing, and compassionate yet firm—all of the qualities you should want in a coach. She is your accountability partner with a focus on helping you get real results ... and you’ll also have fun along the way!
Want to learn more? Click here to book a Complimentary Strategy Session.