Why Looking For a Job Sucks (like really hard)
I don’t know a single person who enjoys looking for a new job…no one at all. I know some that will do it whenever necessary but I don’t know anyone who relishes the experience of looking and finding a new job. The entire process of job hunting sucks. There are many reasons why it sucks but for the most part, it’s uncontrollable, unpredictable and flat out exhausting.
You never know what could happen, you could find your dream job or maybe it was filled by someone who just so happen to be looking a week before you? How about going through the trouble of buying new interview clothes, practicing your interview answers, researching the interviewers and companies only to be told there is a hiring freeze?
Maybe you find a good job but the pay really stinks? Or you find a job but they are unclear on your start date so you have to mill around your current office pretending to be interested? What if you start looking and the word gets out that you are looking before you want it too and now your boss finds out and decides to fire you – just for looking?
We haven’t even covered the time and frustration of getting your resume in shape and applying to jobs. If you haven’t looked for work in the last 2-3 years, you’d be surprised at how much things have changed. It’s all about social media and technology now.
But this question kept coming back to me so I asked some of my current clients flat out “Why does looking for a job suck?” and here’s what they said.
“Because it’s the whole judgment thing. You know, am I good enough? Will they like me? What should I wear? What shouldn’t I wear? Is this person going to treat me nicely?”
“Man, looking for a job is the worst. I mean trying to find the job and then applying and then hoping to get an interview. You don’t know what they are looking for and you try to be everything they want and still end up not getting the job.”
“It’s just so stressful and it’s all out of your control. All you can do is hope and pray. Even if you pass the interviews…like the negotiation period is my least favorite part because you know they don’t want to pay you top notch dollars.”
“The worst part about looking for and finding a new job is not knowing if you are making a huge mistake or not. Sometimes you leave one place, go to other and for some reason, as sh*tty as the old job was, this new one is worse. Then you are like, should I beg for my old job back?” Yep that whole “frying pan vs.fire” thing.
You’re probably thinking “Exactly!” yet others are thinking, “Those are just excuses.” Every job seeker is different with different experiences, expectations and requirements. Executives don’t fear job hunting because more times than not they are poached or they have jobs lined up. Unfortunately many of us have to create our own opportunities through education, networking and good old fashioned looking high and low. By and large, it stinks – let me tell you from an HR standpoint, that when I look at the major job boards it makes me sick to see all the hops job seekers are made to jump through in order to apply for a single position.
Then when I hear some of the stories from my clients about recruiters who call unprepared and unprofessional, telling candidates about all of the attributes they do NOT possess, it makes me wonder why do they even call?
Next the salary negotiation part is another reason job hunting sucks. Most people are reasonable in their salary requests but there are so many “dos and don’ts” like don’t bring up salary first. And don’t price yourself out of contention by asking for too much. It’s funny because most job ads do not post salary range anymore so how do you know if the job even meets your cost of living requirements?
And finally, the coworker/boss situation. Let’s face it, candidates aren’t the only ones who lie and mislead during an interview, companies do too. They will hide all the bad things like work left undone and toxic personalities to get you on board and then you are stuck. No one has time for that!
No matter how bad the process can be there are also some very nice stories out there about people having excellent application and onboarding experiences with new companies. I’ve even heard of a few companies paying higher than normal salaries, so maybe in 2015 things will suck less in the job market.
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