There are probably no job seekers who set out to sabotage their efforts while in the process of looking for jobs. But this doesn’t mean that self-sabotage isn’t still possible. There are inadvertent mistakes that you can make along the way to hurt your chances of being hired. So before you apply for one more job, make sure you don’t do the following:
1. Submit a Carbon-Copy Resume
Having all been job seekers at some point, anyone can understand the frustration of having to create a new resume for each job we want. But writing up original content that factors in the specific job position and company you’re applying to is crucial to branding yourself as a candidate.
If you want to knock yourself out of the running, submit a bunch of resumes that look like they have been sent to another company. These carbon-copy resumes are not only insulting to employers who are seriously looking for candidates, but they are doing you a disservice by selling you short as a professional.
2. Come Off as an Arrogant Job Seeker
As a job seeker, confidence is an amazing attribute to bring to the table. Employers love to know that their candidates feel sure of their ability to get the job done if hired. Unfortunately, there can be a fine line between confidence and arrogance—and you don’t want to cross that line.
For instance, if you have had an amazing career as a biochemist, working for one of the leading laboratories in the country for the past 10 years, you have a lot to brag about. But if you come off in your resume, cover letter, or interview as the savior of the company, you could easily turn off the employer who has to deal with your arrogant attitude.
3. Make Your Last Employer Mad at You
Although you may have been waiting for the moment when you could tell your former boss to “shove it you know where!”, this is something you never want to do, especially if it’s possible that a future employer may contact the former one for information.
Although it may feel good to get some bad feelings off of your chest, burning bridges in your professional life can only hurt you in the long run.
4. Live an Openly Unprofessional Life
Employers scrutinize every aspect of their job candidates, which is actually a very smart thing to do. The problem is, if you make unprofessional mistakes as an applicant, you could lose the job before you’re strongly considered.
For instance, if you’re submitting your application via e-mail, don’t use your firstname.lastname@example.org address as contact information. Instead, use your name or another professional handle. And if you have had numerous drunken nights and friends with camera phones, do your best to make sure those images don’t end up online.
Finding a job is difficult enough for a seeker without having extra issues being thrown into the equation. So every chance you get, be sure to do what you can to avoid sabotaging your search.
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About the author
Jessica Hernandez, President, CEO & Founder of Great Resumes Fast
Hi, I’m Jessica. I started this company back in 2008 after more than a decade directing hiring practices at Fortune 500 companies.
What started as a side hustle (before that was even a word!) helping friends of friends with their resumes has now grown into a company that serves hundreds of happy clients a year. But the personal touch? I’ve kept that.
You might have seen me featured as a resume expert in publications like Forbes, Fast Company, and Fortune. And in 2020, I was honored to be named as a LinkedIn Top Voice of the year!
I’m so glad you’re here, and I can’t wait to help you find your next perfect-fit position!
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