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It can feel encouraging to have your resume win you some job interviews—the calls that tell you you're good enough and that employers want to get a closer look. Nevertheless, it can feel like something is off once you get there. Perhaps the companies don't feel up to your standards or the roles they offer don't excite you.

This is a situation that many successful professionals find themselves in from time to time. Certainly, a stagnant economy and sluggish employment market don't help. However, it's important to understand whether there are any problems you may have overlooked—ones you have control over. When you identify these areas and fix them, you can improve your chances of finding positions that satisfy you. Finding a program that can help you know what job position fits your interests, like the Future Path Program, will help maintain the passion in working on the things you love.

What follows are a few counterintuitive reasons why your job hunt doesn't always go the way you want it to and what you can do about it.

 

You neglect to take inventory of your career

You tend to be driven to find your dream job, so it would make sense that you would want to send out resumes and attend interviews to get to the fun part as quickly as possible. Surprisingly, however, getting there without first taking inventory of your career can make the process much harder than it needs to be

Building a resume isn't the first thing you're supposed to do when you decide to hunt for a job. Rather, you need to contemplate what it is about your career at this moment that you aren't happy with. Do you miss the fact that you don't have enough leadership duties? Do you think your job is not flexible enough, or does your employer not value remote work?

You need to think of the things that are missing in your current job, make a list of the qualities you need in your next job to allow you to thrive, and only then get started with the job hunt. Randomly applying for jobs will only get you into another job that may feel unsatisfying.

 

You aren't aware of what kind of new opportunities are out there

You may believe that you are open to new kinds of opportunities, but if you aren't aware of what those opportunities may actually be, being open won't actually help you. Rather than just telling yourself that you're open to new opportunities, you can research the job market to find out what kinds of unexplored territory there may be. Diligently researching and identifying specific opportunities that you weren't aware of can help you find new ways to get excited about work. 

 

You're in your job hunt alone

You may spend hours a day scanning the job boards to find any openings that seem meaningful to you, but it's important to understand that no matter how hard you try, you only know what you know. Even if you put in a great deal of time, areas of inadequate knowledge may still hamper your efforts. You won't get any closer to your goal if you don't get help addressing your blind spots.

A better way to look for a new job would be to do it with professionals who have already achieved the kind of career goals you have in mind. If you work in hospitality, for instance, and you would like to switch to e-commerce, you won't get very far unless you locate a fellow professional who has made a similar switch. You need to know the mistakes they’ve made, and the lessons they’ve learned. Going down a new road all by yourself without someone to guide you is probably an inefficient use of your time.

If you can't find other professionals, say on LinkedIn, another idea would be to find a career coach. They could give you fresh insight into roles in your new industry of choice that would likely be a good fit for you. In general, they can also help speed up your job search. Whatever path you choose to take, finding in-person guidance is important to any job hunt.

 

When your search doesn't seem to get the results you want, it's important to not be discouraged. All you need to do is to prepare better to make the search more effective, and then head in.

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