Why Job Searching is like On-Line Dating
If you’re on the job hunt, you’re probably feeling the frustration of the whole job-hunting process. You find that job that seems like it was tailor-made for you, only to be rejected by the potential employer (or the automated service that the potential employer is using – that’s a rant for another day). You get emails from recruiters for jobs that you did 8 years ago. You interview for a great job, only to find that it’s not really a match for you. As I’m seeing the trials and tribulations of job searching, it reminds me so much of on-line dating. Here’s how:
People only look at one thing when offering you an opportunity
In on-line dating, a person may see your picture and like what they see, but they reach out to you without reading your profile. If they would have read your profile, they would see that you’re not really what they’re looking for. It’s like that with jobs. They (or some auto bot that’s scanning your profile/resume) look at a keyword without looking at your resume, and they reach out to you for a job that really doesn’t suit you.
For example, I haven’t done software development in 8 years – I work in a project management/team management/business development capacity. I still get emails from recruiters looking for .NET developers. That tells me that they haven’t looked at my LinkedIn profile or my resume to see that I don’t do software development anymore.
Get opportunities that aren’t your type
In on-line dating, a very nice person reaches out to you, but that person is simply not your type. Sometimes the potential employer does read your resume, and they do give you an opportunity that suits your skill set, but it’s not the type of job that you’re looking for. Or, in most cases, the opportunity that you receive has nothing to do with what you’re looking for (hands up, job seekers – how many of you received emails from companies wanting you to become an insurance agent?).
For example, I interviewed for a position that suited my skill sets perfectly – eCommerce background, technical project and team management, and business development. Unfortunately, the place was offering a salary that was significantly lower than the market value, let alone much lower than what I making. I had to politely turn them down.
You’re not the employer’s type
In on-line dating, you reach out to someone, but you are not that person’s type. Sometimes you find that opportunity that seems to fit your skill set and fits exactly what you’re looking for, but the potential employer reads your resume and requirements and decides that you’re not a fit. Sometimes you get the interview, and after the interview, the employer decides to go in a different direction.
I do give credit to employers who let the job seeker know whether they decided to move forward with another candidate (regardless of whether the job seeker interviewed with the company or not) rather than ghost them, but unfortunately the notification is too brief with no explanation why the job seeker was eliminated from contention.
If you did get to the interviewing process, but were turned down for the job, ask why the company decided to not select you. Don’t ask a direct question (ex: “why didn’t you hire me?”) because you won’t get a direct answer (ex: “we found a stronger candidate”). Rather, frame your questions in a way so you can get feedback for future interviews and opportunities. Good example questions:
- “Was there something in my background/resume that wasn’t clear or missing for the job?”
- “Do you have any suggestions regarding how I might have improved upon my resume or presentation?”
- “Was there something that I did very well?”
However, don’t be surprised if the company still doesn’t tell you why they turned your down. Many companies in the United States don’t want to answer in fear of someone suing them, even if the reason for turning down the candidate is legitimate and legal.
You get scammers
It’s just like in on-line dating where the person of your dreams reaches out to you and falls in love with you at first sight, but it turns out to be a scammer. If you have an on-line job profile, you’ll probably get scammers reaching out to you with that high-paying, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that turns out to be a scam.
For example, I get calls and emails from scammers who have the ideal “work at home” opportunities, only to require the small fee of $99 to sign up for the job. I also get calls and emails from unscrupulous recruiters who are mining for resumes to help sell themselves to companies by posting jobs that are not in my geographical region, do not fit my skill set, and/or simply don’t exist. I’ve been seeing a number of postings on job boards (ZipRecruiter, Monster, et al) for phantom jobs, and unfortunately it’s difficult to tell between the phantom jobs and the real jobs.
So what are your experiences? Do you agree that job seeking is like on-line dating? Let us know what you think in the comments. If you like this article, don’t forget to like this article, and feel free to share it on your network.Follow Me on Social Media