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Expectation Realizations Print
Written by Abby Kohut   

Lately I have been receiving many questions around the topic of how to stay motivated during a seemingly endless job search. In my blog, "Squashing the Job Search Blues" I talked about how important it is to maintain a positive attitude. The trick is to really believe that although you have not yet crossed the finish line, you are on the right track.

Alexandra Levit of the Wall Street Journal writes, "Until recently, I was a glass half-empty kind of girl. If 10 good things happened and one bad thing happened, guess what I would focus on? I put tremendous pressure on myself to achieve immediate success, and when my career didn't progress splendidly in all respects, I'd feel miserable."

This should sound familiar if you are a job seeker today.

In my opinion, the best way to stay positive is to believe that you are making progress. Setting your expectations too high for a particular event or interview is a sure fire way to crash into a wall of defeat. Reasonable expectations will help you believe in yourself and help you believe that you are on the path of progress.

Here are some ideas on how to set your expectations:

  1. At a networking event, expect to meet one new person that can help you with your job search, not 10. Also, don't expect a job offer or an interview to come directly from an event because they rarely do. (They often come from the connections you build from attending the events.) Expect to find a new job search buddy, a new person who knows lots of people that you need to know, or even a new friend.

  2. At an interview, expect to answer 80% of the questions well. Don't expect that you are so prepared that no question will be too difficult to answer.

  3. After an interview, don't expect to get called back within a week or two like you used to in the 90's. Expect that the next contact may literally be 3 weeks later. Send an absolutely awesome thank you letter and then continue to put 100% effort into your search. If they are interested, they will definitely be in touch.

  4. When you call or e-mail someone to ask for their help or advice, expect them to get back to you within a week rather than within a day. Most likely, it's not that they don't want to help – it's that they are just as busy as you are and will get back to you as soon as they can.

  5. Expect to accomplish the goals that you set for yourself, but be reasonable when you set them. If you are not comfortable cold calling CEO's to see if they need part time help for the summer, try e-mailing or direct mailing them instead. If you don't love cocktail hour type networking events, try going to industry related seminars or job search workshops.

Tory Johnson, the CEO of Women for Hire says, "Optimism alone won't get you a job, but pessimism will keep you unemployed longer," says Ms. Johnson. "In competing against high-caliber people, you have to have the right attitude as well as the right skills." I could not have said this better myself.

Absolutely Abby’s Advice:
Positivity needs to seep from each and every pore of your body each and every day. This is the key to your success. More times that not, people get hired because they are passionate about what they are interviewing for, not because their skills match 100% to the job description. Find ways to get fired up every morning to reach and/or surpass your expectations. Passion is contagious. Once you find yours, you will be well on your way to the finish line!
 
  • Tired of all the rejection? If you're interested in learning the Absolute truth about why you're struggling, sign up for a one hour "Capture a Recruiter" phone session today. Reach out to me today with any questions and for an absolutely amazing discount coupon!

Drawn from my 18 years of experience and research in recruiting and Human Resources, my blog posts are intended to provide insight into what corporate recruiters and Human Resource professionals look for when they are evaluating your qualifications. Simply reading these blogs will not guarantee you success. However, consistently applying the strategies mentioned, as well as developing your own personal interview style, will greatly enhance your chances of victory amidst the competition. I wish you the best of luck with your search as you begin to take charge of your career!