How is job search like dating?
When you were dating, did you ever meet someone who caught your interest? Did someone sweep you off your feet even though you may not have been looking? How did they do it? Did they complement you? Did they find common interests? Were they persistent in their pursuit of you? Were they attentive?
These are some of the same activities successful job seekers put into play.
Here are 15 of the basic rules of dating and how they apply to job search:
1. Be realistic.
Know what you are looking for. And remember, it isn't always about the money.
2. Be desirable, not desperate.
Don't talk about a job too early in the process of networking, that is like talking about what you want to name your children on the first date.
3. Make dating a priority.
Dating equals networking. Commit to going out regularly. You generally have to meet a lot of people before you find the right fit for a relationship.
4. Don’t talk about your "ex."
Don't bad mouth past employers or people, ever.
5. Crazies needn't apply.
You need to be emotionally healthy. Be careful what you confess on your first date/meeting/interview.
6. Be on your best behavior.
Pick up an etiquette handbook if you are unsure of what constitutes good manners. Another reminder: turn your cell phone off before the date/meeting/interview.
7. Similarity breeds success.
Is there a similarity in core values? What interests do you share?
8. Play hard to get.
Show interest but do not be too available or easy (desperate).
9. Don't be a "chatty Cathy."
Know when to keep your mouth closed and listen. The two-ears-one-mouth-for-a-reason rule applies.
10. Put on your best face.
Be nice so people will like you.
11. Be polite.
Don't over-power. Male or female, you are a guest, show manners.
12. Look beyond appearances.
Look deeper than the surface. Are they putting on their "dating best behavior"?
13. Watch out for that "ole black magic..."
Pay attention to your gut instinct, if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.
14. Hold out …
If you are offered a job, don't accept it on the spot!
15. Go with the flow.
Be willing to compromise. Be flexible!
The Bottom Line:
In order for someone - anyone - to want to network with you or hire you, they have to believe there is something in it for them. Some people are nice and want to help. Perhaps they are empathetic; however, this isn’t always the case. You have to give them a reason. Why you? Why are you the best date they are going to have all month?
© Copyright Hannah Morgan, 2012. All rights reserved. Used with permission.
About This Author:
Hannah Morgan is a job search strategist and founder of CareerSherpa.net. Feel free to connect with Hannah on Twitter (@careersherpa) and Facebook (Career Sherpa). To learn about Career Sherpa.net services and read daily articles related to job search, reputation management and social media, visit her site: Careersherpa.net. If you want to contact Hannah, you can email her at email@example.com.
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