Lisa is qualified for several different types of jobs. She went to school and spent several years working in accounting, but she has also worked in sales and marketing. Up until now, her job search strategy has been to apply for every job for which she is qualified. However, she has been using this approach for a few months and has not had much of a response. What is she doing wrong?
While it is a strength that Lisa is flexible and has a multitude of transferable skills, her lack of focus may be hindering her success in the job market. Lisa needs to be customizing her resume for each position. When Lisa applies to many different types of positions, this task becomes time consuming and inefficient. Lisa will either forego customizing each resume and cover letter (which will make her applications ineffective) or she will be drastically limited in the number of applications that she can submit.
Further, employers are able to identify a lack of focus in applicants and they are not interested in hiring these types of employees. Lisa needs to choose one type of job to focus on and put all of her resources into getting that job. Later on, if she changes her mind, she can always shift her focus.
In order to choose which area to focus on, Lisa should:
1. Look at the labour market to see which types of jobs are most in demand. There is no point in focusing on a particular type of position if there are no jobs available.
2. Look at her skills and experiences and determine which position would be the best fit for her profile. While she may be capable of doing several different types of jobs, there is likely one that is the best fit.
3. Look at which job she is the most enthusiastic about. If she is enthusiastic about a position, she is more likely to be both successful and happy.
Think of a laser- unfocused, it can’t do much, but when it is focused in one spot, it can cut through a diamond.
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