By Andunola Adeshola
Forbes, October 30, 2018 —
“You need to fix your resume.”
“You may want to tighten up your interview skills.”
“Oh, you absolutely need to connect with him if you want that job.”
Everyone’s always telling you that the best way to get the job you want is to fix your resume, brush up your interview skills and network, network, network. While those things are necessary to take your career to the next level, no one talks about the mindset blocks that hold you back from getting the opportunities you truly want.
You can have the perfect resume, the perfect interview responses and an amazing network, but if you want to secure a job you’ll truly love, you have to first get out of your own way by making these five mental shifts.
Concentrate on Quality over Quantity
Quantity focuses on “how many,” while quality focuses on “how good.” A quantity mindset thinks, “How many applications am I sending out?” A quality mindset thinks, “How good are the applications I’m sending out?”
To really stand out amongst the masses, you have to focus on how well you’re applying to the positions you desire and how well you’re communicating your capabilities. If you’re still applying to 10 different jobs a week, you’re still operating in quantity over quality. Every week, finding 10 jobs you absolutely love, applying excellently to all 10, while still working 40+ hours a week, and attending to other personal commitments? Nearly impossible. And you don’t have to do that. It’s not about how many jobs you apply to, it’s about how well you’re applying to the right jobs.
Accept Abundance over Scarcity
Raise your hand if you’ve ever said to yourself, “I guess I should just apply to this job because it’s kind of what I want to do and I need a new job.”
If you’re guilty, you’re operating in scarcity. You think there’s not enough opportunities out there anyway, so you might as well take what you can get. You like the idea of having a job you love, but you don’t think that’s possible for you because options are limited and time is ticking.
But, an abundance mindset recognizes that there’s a wealth of opportunities out there, even when you don’t feel like it or see it. You know what you want and you know there’s a company and position out there that fits the bill. Although you want a new job as quickly as possible, you’re not willing to settle for less because you know the right opportunity is on the horizon.
An abundance mindset stops you from accepting a job offer that you know isn’t quite right for you, while a scarcity mindset jumps at the first chance of any job opportunity.
Focus on Strategy over Tactics
If you’re still focused on the tactics, you’re missing the mark. A nicely formatted resume is cute and confidence-boosting, a non-sleep inducing cover letter is icing on the cake, and a Premium LinkedIn profile is fancy, but if you don’t know the value you bring to the roles you want, you’ll always be denied the opportunity.
You must switch your mindset to focus on the strategy behind the tactics. You have to first understand what positions you want, why you’re an asset to those positions, and how to communicate your qualities and strengths to the right decision makers. Focusing on creating a compelling job search strategy, before focusing on the material behind it, will get you the dream job.
See Rejection as Redirection
Taking rejection personal is a sure way to hinder your progress. Let’s get real: you will be rejected. There’s no “if” or “maybe” it’s going to happen. Every opportunity isn’t for you and everyone isn’t going to like you. And, quite frankly, you won’t like every opportunity and you won’t like everyone.
You have to shift your mind to see rejection as redirection. It’s either redirecting you to another company or redirecting you to change your approach to that company. I’ve helped many clients secure positions at their dream companies after they were previously denied, but the first step is to stop taking rejection personal and just do better. The quicker you choose to use rejection as redirection, the faster you’ll get the job offer you truly want.
Recognize Afraid is Better Than Stagnant
The biggest hindrance to your next career move is fear. It’s a stumbling block that can hold you back and sabotage your efforts. Fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of uncertainty, they all have the same effect: stagnancy. Fear will have you applying to the same type of position you’ve been doing, simply because you’re scared to go after the role you really want.
Getting the senior role at the exciting company, pivoting to a new industry and taking your career to the next level in any way shape or form, will always make you want to pee your pants. But the secret is not becoming fearless, it’s about learning to fear less. It’s about getting to a place where you’re more uncomfortable being stagnant than you are comfortable settling for less because you’re afraid.
If you’re wondering why you haven’t been able to secure the position you truly want, you’re probably struggling with one of these five mental blocks. You must first change your mind before you can change your life. Start here.
Adunola Adeshola coaches high-achievers on how to take their careers to the next level and secure the positions they’ve been chasing.