"Why didn't I know this?" my client asked the other day. "How is it that I have an undergraduate degree, an MBA, 10 years' experience and know none of this stuff that you are telling me?" Here's some "stuff" you might not know as it relates to career transition:
That a stranger will glance at your résumé for less than 10 seconds and then, make a decision about your candidacy: yes, no, maybe.
That a wing-it approach to interviewing (or job search) can impede your success.
That you are a brand – a product for sale in a highly competitive market.
That a hiring manager expects you to be conversant about your KSAs.
That a résumé is written once you, the job seeker, have clearly defined career options.
That you will be expected by employers to cite a credible answer to “why should I hire you?” – to say that you have education and experience no longer suffices.
That the job market is not for the naïve, uninformed job seeker.
That it will take every ounce of energy, effort and organizational skill that you own to facilitate a successful search strategy.
That reaching out to others for help, guidance and support is a basic survival tactic, especially when you are in job search mode.
That asking for help is one of the first things to do as your career transition/job search gets underway.
That you are the project driver, manager and leader – if your search is a success, you get full credit; if your search is a flop, you get full credit.
That your job search may be one of the toughest, most grueling, hardest, and frustrating activities you have ever embarked upon in your entire work life.
That a career transition will manage you – or you will manage it!
That job search is a never-ending process throughout your career given the ever-changing nature of today’s workplace.
That some people you thought would help you, won’t.
That some people you thought didn’t care a thing about you, do.
That you will be in a constant state of surprise and disappointment as you progress through the job search journey.
That staying stuck will hinder you more than help you.
That beating yourself up mentally for what might have been, could have been or should have been is a waste of your time, effort and energy.
That moving forward after job loss with an attitude of positivity will yield more productive results than an outlook of negativity.
That whatever you say negatively can and will be used against you at a job interview.
That rejection can propel you forward or halt your job search progress; only you can decide.
That brands attract and brands repel – some employers will love you; some employers, not so much – keep rolling, no matter what.
That what you don’t know will not only hurt you – it can sabotage you, derail you and keep you from moving on with confidence, knowledge and efficiency.