There is nothing as frustrating as applying for job after job that you feel perfectly matches your qualifications and skills yet fail to get shortlisted for an interview. It is even worse to go through the interviewing process, only for the recruiter to drop you off the list during the final stage. Rejection is Painful. And yet you cannot afford to give up. How then do you keep yourself motivated while job hunting?
Dorcas Wainaina, Executive Director, Institute of Human Resource Management (IHRM) offers some tips to help you remain focused on the job search.
1.CREATE A LIST OF POTENTIAL EMPLOYERS and reach out to at least two every day
If you know of any potential employers in your field, note them down and contact at least two daily.
Some employers choose not to advertise job opportunities, and instead ask for referrals from other recruiters or friends. Letting potential employers know that you are job hunting can work to your advantage when they are recruiting. By doing this, you will also keep yourself busy, a factor that helps to raise your motivation levels.
2.HAVE REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS
One of the shortcomings that millennials have is that they want things to happen quickly. You apply for a job today, and in the next few days, you start wondering why you have not received a call from the recruiter. You need to understand that applying for a job today does not mean that you will be called for an interview two days later. Some recruiters take much longer, depending on their need, to respond.
3.OUTLINE YOUR CAREER GOALS
Take small chunks of time and focus on them. Focusing on a long-term career goal might leave you frustrated especially if the job you are looking for doesn’t come through when you expect it to.
4. BELIEVE IN YOURSELF AND IN YOUR ABILITY. CONFIDENCE IS KEY
You met all the potential employer’s requirements, and yet you were not called back for a second interview. When this happens, most tend to blame themselves, thinking that they must have somehow messed up during the interview, or that their resume was not up to standard. Should this happen, please don’t beat yourself up because it might not be about you. There are varied reasons why recruiters reject suitable candidates, and many have absolutely nothing to do with your performance or skills. Learn to handle rejection positively.
5.TAKE SOME TIME OFF JOB HUNTING
If you have been sending out your resume for months without getting any positive responses, it is advisable to take some time off job hunting. A break will help you to re-energise and give new possibilities time to open up.
6.LISTEN TO MOTIVATIONAL TALKS
Most motivation speakers have had to bear the pain of rejection when job hunting. Their experiences and how they were able to overcome rejection can be a great source of inspiration. The motivation speakers you listen to should extend beyond your areas of expertise.
7.MAKE USE OF NETWORKING PLATFORMS SUCH AS LINKEDIN
LinkedIn is an excellent platform to connect with professionals in your field. Reach out and share your resume with them. You could also join the various networking groups on the platform. Aim to be active in such groups because you never know, a potential employer might just spot you. It is also important that you maintain a professional outlook on your social media platforms because many employers tend to look here before making up their minds about you.
8.BE AN ACTIVE MEMBER OF A PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION in line with your career training and background
These associations tend to have networks that reach out to them when seeking potential candidates to hire. If you are a HR-trained graduate for instance, link up with IHRM, if you are an accountant, link up with ICPAK. Becoming a member and participating in their events is an important way to build networks and meet people who either have the power to hire, or know who’s hiring.
Rather than sit home all day mourning your joblessness, volunteer at your local church, hospital or children’s home. Although the opportunity might not be directly related to your expertise, it helps to build your interpersonal skills. Most recruiters prefer employees who can interact with people from different backgrounds. When volunteering, you might also come across people who can help you get a job.
10.DO NOT PLAY VICTIM
Just because you haven’t got a positive response yet doesn’t mean that you are not good at what you do or that the recruitment process was a sham. Things might not always work as you expect them to, and playing the victim and feeling sorry for yourself will only demoralise you.
11. AMASS MORE SKILLS
Consider taking a short course that will broaden your knowledge in your field. It will not only keep you busy, but will also make you stand out when going through the recruitment process. There are many free courses available online, so lack of money should not be an excuse.