The 4 Most Ridiculously Obvious Reasons You Are Not Employed Right Now – Part I of 2

The 4 Most Ridiculously Obvious Reasons You Are Not Employed Right Now - Part I of 2

Part 1 of 2: In a recent LinkedIn Group discussion among Career Experts, we were all astonished that we feel compelled to repeat so many basics over and over again. “If only candidates followed half of our advice, they would be employed by now” said a well-known expert. Frankly, it feels as if the discipline of job search has taken a turn for the worse.

It’s a new job search era, candidates. Not only are hiring managers using technology to screen, but there are fewer jobs and more applicants. The competition is fierce, hiring managers are feeling more pressure to hire the best, and those who are hunting to WIN a job are landing quicker.

After 30+ years in sales and marketing positions in Fortune 500’s, I’ve interviewed, hired and coached thousands during their job search. Some common “crap” prevents a candidate’s success. Crap comes in two forms: mistakes and excuses and it’s everywhere.

4th Top Reason You Are Not Employed Right Now: Unwilling to describe and be passionate about what job you want.

You’re not unable, but you are unwilling to pinpoint the type of position you are hunting for. What job do you want, candidates?

  • What function (inside sales, outside sales, what kind of marketing, what kind of finance)
  • What industries and why
  • What city (and don’t say anywhere!)
  • What level, based on your experience and their job description

Here are some of the crap answers we hear to the most common question of “What Are You Looking For? Or, translation, “What are you passionate about doing?”: “I can do so many things, it’s hard to pick just one,” “I have a dual MBA emphasis in finance and marketing.” “What do you have and I’ll tell you if I’m interested.” “I want to be a general manager,” “I want to leverage my skills in collaboration and find a challenging role that lets me tackle challenging problems.” Or my favorite: “I’d like to create a position for a company, based on my unique skills.”

Candidates, figure out what you want to do based on posted job descriptions, have a goal, write it out and share your next job goal with your network. Not your 10 year plan or your vision for greatness. Just the next step job goal. Also, a talented ex-Microsoft executive also asked candidates to share WHY you are passionate about that goal. Have a response to “why this industry, why this function, why this company?” when you are interviewing.

3rd Top Reason You are Not Employed Right Now: Not Making the Time Commitment

Cut the crappy excuse of “I don’t have time.” Then your job search must not be that important to you, right? I’ve been there. A full-time-job, two kids under 3, want to get those work-outs in, errands to run, AND a job search. It takes so much time to research the companies, find the right connections who can help, write tailored cover letters, and track my applications so I follow up. Not to mention have meetings with people, make phone calls, then interview.

Candidates, you use your calendar for your meetings, your parties, and you certainly used it in college to track your mid-term and final due dates. Why, then, for your job search, you’re using yellow sticky notes and squishing some search activities in during your free time? Make yourself job #1 and prioritize the work it takes to win a job.

Come back to for the TOP TWO Most Ridiculously Obvious Reasons You Are Not Employed Right Now.


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