Monthly Archives: October 2016

Keep Getting Drawn To Jobs You Hate

Are you one of those people that seem to end up going from one terrible job to another? You might even begin to develop a complex about this strange phenomenon! You might think that there is a simple reason why you get drawn to dead-end jobs or ones where you hate your boss!

In reality, there can be a variety of reasons why you aren’t faring so well in your career endeavors. If you want to break the cycle and end up in a job you love, dare I say one you’d never leave, help is at hand!

Today I’m going to share with you the top four most common reasons why you never seem to end up going for “good” jobs:

1. You don’t think there is anything better out there

Sometimes people assume they have to settle for whatever’s going at the time. As you can appreciate, that isn’t the best of strategies to have when seeking employment!

Believe it or not, there is a “perfect job” out there for everyone. The main issue is that some of us aren’t willing to broaden our horizons. Think about your skills and strengths. What types of (good) roles could you apply for where you could use them?

2. Inability to embrace and work with technology

I’m not going to lie to you; technology dominates virtually all industries today! Some people fear learning new skills that use computers or technology in some way. They have the misguided notion that “computers will take over our jobs”!

The truth is, computers and technology still need humans to operate and oversee them. It’s better to make use of technology instead of shying away from it. For instance, let’s say you’ve got an admin role. Don’t assume that contract lifecycle management software will take over your job!

Instead, get trained in using such software to efficiently manage your employer’s business processes. In the above example, the software can help you remind customers about contract renewals. Trust me; evolving with the times and using IT will make you more valuable to employers – not less!

3. Resistance to change

I mentioned a moment ago the word “evolving.”

All of us need to change with the times otherwise we risk getting stuck behind in the past. Today’s employers want workers that are happy to evolve with changing market conditions. And they want people that are willing to learn new skills.

Don’t be one of those people that get stuck in their ways. Otherwise, you’ll keep ending up doing monotonous jobs that you hate!

Hiring Insights

I’m seeing some interesting trends through my clients’ experiences, and after being interviewed for a trade magazine article about the current hiring landscape, I’m curious to see if these insights resonate with you. (Note to self: Get better about posting links to my interviews)

The candidate with the most experience doesn’t always get the job. The combination of skills, experience and cultural fit matter most. So when you get passed over for a position for which you feel your completely qualified, you can’t take it personally. But you can do additional research, by talking to professionals who are “in the know”, about how to best position yourself.

Boomerang employees matter – and more companies are invested in making a “parting of the ways” as amicable as possible so you might consider returning to them in the future. Also, if you have a favorable experience with an employer – which is totally possible even if you’re being transitioned out or your position is eliminated – you’re more likely to refer someone to that company. Companies get that this matters as the competition for talent gets tighter.

The hiring timeline is unpredictable. Don’t assume the position has been filled if you don’t hear anything for a month or so after applying. And when a recruiter tells you that the position needs to be filled within a few weeks, don’t assume that they have any control over the schedule. There are just too many variables, including workload, budget, resource allocation and unknown priorities, to play the guessing game.

The candidate with the most experience doesn’t always get the job.

Candidates aren’t doing enough “shopping around” as this career coach would like. A short job search is a successful job search, right? Not so fast. Even though job searching might never been one of your favorite activities, don’t short-change yourself. I’m hearing from more and more professionals who have landed a “bad fit”. So instead of having a short job search, they find themselves having to jump back into a second job search. Don’t let this scare you off or prevent you from leaving a job that makes you miserable. Growing professionally is always worth it. Even if the outcome doesn’t turn out as planned, you’ll learn a ton in the process. Remember that no one is able to predict every outcome with 100 % accuracy.

Company needs change. Priorities shift. Funding gets cut. Resources get allocated to new areas. So when you apply for a job, and get called for an interview, there’s a chance the job might never be filled. As a business practice, it sounds crazy, but companies do go through the entire process and not hire anyone. Not because you’re not a fabulous candidate. But when you hear “we’ve decided to move in another direction” or “we’ve put this position on hold for now”, it’s not code for “we’ve found someone else”. It happens, so you’ll have to move on quickly. The upside: When you get a call for an even better-matched position than the one you originally applied to.

Hiring managers use the interview process to help them define what they really need in a position. Let’s say they start out with three potential candidates. As they go through the interview process, they discover that they need less experience in one area, and more experience in another. And while they were initially open to hiring someone from outside their industry, they now discover that they’re too deep into their project that they can’t afford their new hire to have that steep of a learning curve. So they decide that no one in the current candidate pool fits their needs. Or they decide to split the position into two different lower-level roles.

Resume on Salary History

You should never put your salary history or compensation demands on your resume. Many online applications require salary history but that requirement shows signs of fading away.

Job applicants often feel on the spot when asked to provide information about their current salary and their salary history. They believe the company is trying to save money by basing the salary not on what the position deserves or on the salary range the company set, but instead on the lowest possible increase the job applicant would accept.

Job applicants want to know why pay should be based on their previous job—which might be in a different industry, at a different level, or with different responsibilities. In addition, their previous starting salary has no bearing on the current experience, skills, and knowledge they will be bringing to their next job. Finally, women (for example) generally earn less than men for equal work, so sharing her salary history puts a woman at a disadvantage in salary negotiations; she goes from underpaid to underpaid.

At least one state, Massachusetts, agrees with job applicants. According to a recent news story, Massachusetts law “takes a step that is completely unique: it prohibits employers from asking prospective hires about their salary histories until after they make a job offer that includes compensation, unless the applicants voluntarily disclose the information. No other state has such a ban in place.”

Massachusetts lawmakers agree that your salary history and current compensation are private information that you do not have to volunteer. There is no legal or moral obligation to include your salary history on your resume; therefore, you should not include it. Salary negotiations should start after you have a solid job offer, not before.