47 Ways Intelligent Executives are Sabotaging Their Job Search
Job search mistakes happen to smart, intelligent executives all the time. They are not even aware of it. But evidence of it happening to an executive exists by the lack of interviews and offers he/she has received.

Is this you? Are you an executive that is not seeing results you want from your job search? Struggling with finding the best tactics to generate interviews and offers? Never had this experience before and you are not sure why you are experiencing lackluster results? Peruse this checklist and if more than 10 of these reasons resonate with you, then you will need to seriously consider using the expertise of an experienced job search consultant.

  1. Go into a new field without major research and wonder why there is no traction from your efforts

  2. Expect corporate recruiters to know for which job they would be best suited, despite not giving clear direction or focus

  3. Hope to do a career change by only applying to job boards or trying to use third party recruiters to advance the search

  4. Email the same cover letter to all positions to which they apply with no customization that describes how they are specifically suited for the requirements of the role

  5. Send the same thank you note to all interviewers at the same company without referencing points discussed in the interview conversation

  6. Think they have to have 100% clarity as to what they want before they start to look. Exploratory interviews are for exploring options and still engaging conversations to discover ways to define focus

  7. Only submit resumes to job postings on job boards and never reach out to people at companies directly

  8. Assume the tactics that worked for their job search three (or twenty) years ago will work for them now

  9. Pursue the search alone and do not seek out support groups or professional assistance

  10. Immediately assume they are not getting an interview because the are (insert old, young, female, male, of a certain race, not ethnic enough, short, tall, skinny, fat, etc) and not focus on the tactics they can control to improve the presentation of their skill set and overall candidacy

  11. Talk down their accomplishments when selling themselves on an interview

  12. Inflate their accomplishments when selling themselves on an interview

  13. Only read a company’s website when preparing for an interview and fail to research the interviewer, the job or the firm’s competitors

  14. Flounder answering interview questions because they did not research themselves to speak effectively about their background in detail on an interview

  15. Utilize a general resume to communicate their skill set and become frustrated when hiring managers do not call them for an interview

  16. Assume they are bulletproof at their current job

  17. Be resistant to change and unwilling to try new things to help themselves

  18. Follow-up too often in a too pushy manner

  19. Apply to online jobs too fast and in an unselective manner

  20. Do not follow up enough or following up in a manner that demonstrates lack of confidence

  21. Use the same ineffective tools to find a job and get frustrated why it is not yielding superior results

  22. Spending too much time doing job search research and send out an inadequate amount of outbound communications, which stall the job search

  23. Have their resume depend on their cover letter to outline to a recruiter what position they are seeking (what if it is separated or never read?)

  24. Creating a cover letter that is a prose version of their resume and failing to demonstrate how they can add value to a firm or solve a main problem if hired

  25. Remain behind the computer and never interacting with people personally or over the phone

  26. Rarely use LinkedIn to find prospects or did not set up a robust LinkedIn profile to help recruiters to find them

  27. Do not engage new connections in LinkedIn Groups or make contributions to those group updates

  28. Fail to use Twitter to passively find job leads or relevant contacts with whom to engage

  29. Get too caught up in privacy issues which make it difficult for employers to find them and their credentials online—and then wonder why no one calls them

  30. Have others proofread their resume and cover letter for typos and grammar errors

  31. Fail to bring copies of their resume and references to the interview

  32. Speak in generalities and do not use specifics when speaking about accomplishments

  33. Cite job description-type bullets on their resume and do not use achievement-based language to construct the employment sections of the resume

  34. Approach the entire job search process with a sense of entitlement, depressive-state or an overall poor attitude

  35. Do not organize their job search to ensure proper and timely follow up on all leads and networking contacts

  36. Attend way too many networking events that attract only other unemployed job seekers

  37. Refrain from attending professional conferences and conventions to expand their network

  38. Ask for too much money

  39. Expect a prospective employer to make up for a salary cut you took 5 years ago with a current offer

  40. Say you are wide open on salary requirements and will take anything

  41. Have poor or incongruent representation of themselves on Facebook or Twitter and other personal-focused social media outlets

  42. Include information on a resume, in an interview or on an application about political, religious or controversial social issue leadership or volunteer activities

  43. Follow an unhealthy lifestyle that can affect their physical energy and mental well-being. Job searches are an athletic event, in my opinion, and job seekers need to be in good shape!

  44. Miss the boat on contributing to industry-focused blogs and embracing niche social communities to advance their search and increase their contact base

  45. Do not help subordinates with their professional development – karma is a bitch

  46. Surround themselves with negative-minded people that contribute to a defeatist attitude. Surround yourself with winners and positive-minded people!

  47. Lose hope

Some of these errors are so subtle that executives do not even realizing they are sabotaging their job search and, ultimately, their career. Often an executive job seeker can make the change when it is pointed out to them in this manner…in other cases, the executive simply has to learn through experiencing the process. Rest assured, once a job seeker realizes these sabotaging events are happening, they can change their habits quickly and put themselves on the road to opportunity.