Opening the door to new possibilities and positions

People say to me in their first consultation: “I just need a job”, “I just have to get employed”, or “I don’t care about this now and I just want to get an interview”. This is one of the most common mistakes when looking for a job – not having a job goal statement.

Get specific
How many times do you think I have met a candidate who came and said: “I want a job in a finance team, where I will be working with Excel, assisting in performance reports, analysing numbers, so better strategy can be made, hopefully with nice colleagues to collaborate on projects?” Answer: none.

Everybody just comes up with the industry or the field, no more specifics about precisely what they want to do or precisely what they can do. From experience, the furthest most unemployed people go with defining their job goal is to the A-kasse’s page where you must enter a ‘job goal’ – but normally they narrow it down to the title of the position they are aiming at.

Send the right vibe
Naturally, if your aim is “to get a job” – what it reads as is that you are fine with just any job (which we both know you are not). However, you work with this sentence every day (get a job, need a job) – so it becomes a part of you. In the end, what happens is that unconsciously the vibe that you send out with your application is : “I just want a job”.

No-one in HR who reads your cover letter and receives that vibe will be likely to invite you for an interview, since you are not stating the most important thing: why this job at this company.

Opening new doors
And before you rush into describing how motivated you are to start working at ABC or XYZ, let me add that most companies are first and foremost interested in knowing how you can be of use and with what skills you are bringing to the team. So, drop the formalities with the motivation, start your application with a clear statement of your skills –ideally corresponding to what your real and identified job goal is.

This is where I come in, encouraging people to review their job statements, descriptions of favourite tasks, dreams and visualisations of what they really want to do – then together we open new doors of possibilities to a different range of positions or much more specific ones!

Ivanka (Vanya) Ruskova is a senior business analyst with experience in IT, investment banking and the service industries. She currently works with graduates entering the job market in Denmark, offering extensive CV and application assistance, personal coaching and counselling.

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