Just like the dead-air you get when your cell phone reception fails, and you utter the same phrase like a mantra at least 20 times before you realize no one is listening, your job search can feel like that some times, when you recant the same phrase over and over again, “Can You Hear Me?” Getting discouraged, frustrated, annoyed and downright fed-up with the lack of response, follow through and in some cases common courtesy, is unfortunately a routine part of the job search these days. There is no accounting for poor manners when you can’t expect to even get a response back to the tune of “We’re not interested.” When your emails, voicemails and even FaceBook requests go unanswered, all you ever seem to want to ask is, “Can you hear me?”
Getting a response to your job query these days, however timely, is like a gift from God some days the messages of love pour forth other days, not so much. Being able to cope with the ups and downs and uncertainties that make up your job search is as much part of the process of managing your career as hiring a coach or a resume writer to help you out. They don’t teach you about professional courtesy in outplacement classes or career counseling sessions in school. Being rejected, so to speak whether blatant or otherwise should not stop you dead in your tracks as you try to pursue your job search. Yes, rejection is never easy and it stinks to feel like you are not even worth a return reply even if it’s, “Sorry, no thanks.” Even when you have applied for every job online, have answered every follow-up request for samples of your work, provided references upon request, and even agreed to go through yet another round of interviews after meeting what seemed like the entire company, to find no one willing to return your call or even tell you if they’ve hired someone else. Yes, the “Can You Hear Me?” gets louder with each passing unanswered email, phone call or referral.
Knowing when to move forward after you feel you’ve exhausted all possible avenues can make the process of your job search transition much easier. Having the courage and the conviction to say, “Look I’ve called, emailed and followed up at least five times and nothing, it’s time to move on,” is an important lesson to learn when things are just not moving in the right direction. When the proverbial door does not open because there is another one that will scenario repeatedly plays out like a broken record, you need to fast-track your job search and put out as many feelers as possible. Remember, like dating it’s a numbers game. Just because the matched “winked” at you, doesn’t mean you’ll ever get a call.
Limiting your options, waiting for the phone to ring or an email reply is not going to do much to bolster your confidence or your self-esteem. If waiting for the response that won’t come becomes your entire job search strategy, you need to think again. Having the diligence to press on and know when to call it quits when no one has the decency to tell you they are not interested requires the necessary courage to push away any fear of failure or rejection. Managing your career can be like managing your cell phone coverage, you need to know when its time to switch carriers, change cell phones or not take it personally when there is no one answering you when you scream, “Can You Hear Me!”
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