Assertive, forward-thinking candidates are front and center on the radar screens of today’s hiring managers – and this certainly should be reflected in your job search behavior. Determination, follow-through and tenacity are strong, positive traits. But as you pursue a new opportunity, be careful not to cross the line between assertiveness and aggression.
Focus on the Value You Will Add
Ask yourself how you want to be perceived by your prospective employer. Put their needs a step ahead of your own and convey to them that you can make an impact and add immediate value to their organization – but do so in a professional manner that reflects your leadership skills.
- Don’t preach. Never take an “I deserve the job” approach. Highlight your skills, but never send a message of entitlement. Instead, express your gratitude for the opportunity to be considered for the job. Then, convince the hiring manager that the company needs you in a thorough but humble fashion.
Strategically Position Yourself
Rather than applying for every position offered at a company or plastering your resume all over the Internet, take the time to identify the jobs that meet your qualifications and needs, and then pursue them strategically.
- Applying for every job can send the wrong signal. An employer wants to know that you’re committed to a particular role and bring specific skills to the table. It may be okay to vie for two or even three similar positions, but only if you’re qualified and sincerely interested in them.
Be Positive and Professional
Throughout your job search, convey a positive attitude at all times. Your optimal professional abilities and demeanor should be on constant display.
- Don’t offend anyone. This can occur if you’re overly aggressive about getting your resume to a hiring or HR manager. Be careful not to burn bridges or damage professional relationships. Never resort to deception; for instance, don’t intimate to a receptionist or other gatekeeper that you “know the HR manager personally.” Don’t leave an envelope with your resume, marked “personal and confidential.”
- Never show up in person without an appointment. With the exception of a few areas, such as certain jobs in retail and food service, it is unacceptable to apply for a job unannounced and in person. Employers consider this practice annoying and disrespectful of their time. Plus, many companies only accept resumes electronically. So it’s a waste of your time, too.
- Stay away from hard-selling questions in your interview. For instance, don’t ask “Is there anything standing in the way of me getting an offer?” This tends to turn off interviewers by putting them on the spot. No hiring manager wants to think they’re being pushed or aggressively pursued.
- Follow up, but don’t be a stalker. It’s a good idea to follow up after you submit a resume or have an interview, but don’t pester the employer. A single email or phone call is sufficient to get the ball rolling.
Partner with a Career Coach
Working with a career coach can be the key to success in your job search. Your coach will partner with you to develop and tailor resumes to jobs you are considering and guide you through the interviewing and hiring process. Contact the recruiting specialists at PrideStaff Modesto to learn more.