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10 Habits to Adopt as a Job Seeker

You so often hear about all the mistakes job candidates are making.  What are they doing right and how can you do the right things to get hired now?

1. NETWORKING (yes, I used all CAPS).  Networking is so key in today’s job market.  Filling out an application is a great first step, but finding people you know that work at that company is beyond helpful.  Do you have a LinkedIn profile?  Is your Linked in info on your resume?  Have you told everyone you know, that you’re looking for work and what kind of work you’re looking for?

2. Tailoring their resume for specific jobs.  That’s right, every time you apply for a new job make sure your resume fits the job description like a glove.  This includes using key words they’re looking for, and any other requirements.  If I need someone who is a Java Programmer with 10 years experience, tell me extensively about your programming in Java.

3. Listing achievements not responsibilities.  If you tell me you came to work and held down your desk for 5 years and now want a new job, I’m not likely to call you.  Tell me the changes you made, the processes you improved, and your achievements and I’m interested and will call you.

4. Having a good attitude.  This sounds trite, but it’s really not.  You get more of what you focus on.  If you have a bad attitude about job searching, it’s too hard, no one’s hiring “people like me” (whatever that means), it’s going to come through to everyone you talk to and interact with and people want to hire someone they like, not someone with a bad attitude.

5. Casting a WIDE net.  Pick the top 10 companies that you’re interested in, that’s fine, but when you don’t hear from those companies, you need to move on.  You need to widen that net.  There are other companies that you can dazzle with your talents and grow your career as well as their bottom line.  We call that a win-win.

6. Being well informed about the company.  Show up to that job interview and know what the position they’re hiring is or and what the company does.  Show the interviewer(s) that this job is the one you want.  Go in knowledgeable about the founders, the direction the company is going, how your skill set will rocket the company forward, you only get one chance to make a first impression, you want to shine!

7. Viewing job searching as a Full time job.  Serious job seekers know that they can’t find a spectacular job in the 60 minutes between dinner and tucking the kids in at night.  Job searching requires your time.  Making connections (see networking above), researching companies (casting a wide net/being well informed about the company), resume adjustments (tailor your resume for the position) take

8. Having a professional online presence.  Your online presence needs to be squeaky clean.  Party pictures, half naked pictures, foul language covering your page?  I can guarantee you’re not going to get a call from the HR manager with a job offer.  You don’t have to take any of it down, just use the privacy features.  The picture I should see doesn’t have to be a professional headshot, but it needs to be something you’d be fine with grandma seeing.

9. Being Tenacious.  Don’t quit.  Don’t get discouraged.  The stories where you hear that a PERFECT job just dropped into someone’s lap?  It’s not common, that’s why they make such fabulous stories!  Most of us don’t get the first job we apply for, let alone interview for.  There are a lot of applications received for every open position. Get feed back on what you did well and what needs to be fixed.  Make sure you have others go over your resume, don’t try to go it alone. 

10. Showing gratitude to the interviewer.  Thank the interviewer at the end of the interview for their time.  Get their email/snail mail address and hand write a thank you note.  Don’t let them forget you (but don’t go overboard and become a stalker!).  Just make sure to follow up with a Thank You note.


Three steps to success:

  1. Sign Up. You’ve served your country. Now let us serve you. Sign up now—it’s free, quick, and easy.
  2. Post Your Resume.  Be found by hundreds of veteran friendly companies—post your resume! Don’t worry if it’s not perfect—you can easily update it later!
  3. Search Jobs. Don’t wait for companies to find you. Set up automated Job Scouts to scour our database and notify you of new jobs.

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