[08.16.13]
6 great comments!

4 Attitudes That Hinder Job Search

This is a guest blog post by Sharon Hamersley on bad attitudes during job search. 

bad attitudes, job search strategies, job search help, job search frustration, Columbus Dispatch, Job Search, Attitude, Frustration

Let’s just say this first: job search can be frustrating, exhausting, and at times demoralizing. It is hard to keep up a positive attitude in the face of so many challenges. But, your situation can become even more of a “downer” if you are not willing to adapt to the current realities of the job market.

Case in point – a recent letter to the editor in the Columbus Dispatch. The writer gives many reasons why (one assumes) they have not been able to find a job:

If one is not proficient on the computer, it is very difficult to seek employment. Face-to-face contact with a business rarely results in being hired.

This is number one on my bad attitudes list: my current skills should suffice to conduct a job search. I don’t want to bother getting additional training so that I can use the current tools and resources to apply to jobs. My question is: why would an employer want to hire someone who has little interest in improving their skills? Job requirements change over time and employers need people who can adapt to changed circumstances.

The application with all of the information on it is not sufficient; one also must submit a resume that contains much of the same information as the application.

This is number two on my bad attitudes list: I should be able to determine how much information the employer really needs. My question here is: if you are not willing to “go the extra mile” during the application process, what might that say about your willingness to go “above and beyond” if hired?

Applicants will be asked to agree to submit to personal background checks, credit reports and drug testing.

“Attitude” number three: I don’t want anyone prying around in my personal life. There is an element of truth here – the employment process has, in my opinion, gotten fairly intrusive, mostly as a means of lawsuit defense. But, the flip side of that is another question: what have you got to hide? Yes we all have made mistakes at some point but hopefully in the far distant past or if more recent, we have learned from them.

Some companies will interview numerous applicants over weeks at a time for sometimes just one position, so one’s chances of being hired are very unlikely.

“Attitude” number four: why should I bother even going to an interview if the chances of getting the job are so low? I have several questions here: how are you preparing for the interview so that you stand out? Can you explain how you would help them do what they do better? Or are you expecting them to hire you just because you need a job?

The letter writer was clearly frustrated and demoralized. And I don’t want to sound like I’m “blaming the victim.” But in order to be successful, the job seeker needs to look at what they can do to address the barriers that make finding work a challenge. If I could sit down with the writer I would ask them whether they were willing to make a change in themselves (around their bad attitudes) in order to find work. I don’t know what the answer is, but I suspect it might be “No”:

“Those who are unsatisfied with their current jobs should be thankful they have one. If a person is considering changing employment, he would be wise to remain where he is. The grass is not greener on the other side of the fence. “

What bad attitudes have you noticed in your own thinking and how have you addressed them?

Thanks martinak15 for the photo via Flickr. 


Written by: Sharon Hamersley
Tags: | | |
Categories: Positive Attitude
  • Marquis crumpton

    Companies still aren’t hiring you even if you gained tons of new skills and I have seen it myself among listening to other job seekers. If you improve your skills, you will get a typical that was good of you, but we want someone who is more experienced than you heard that many times.

    I don’t feel it is a negative attitude, it is just being factual.

  • Sharon Hamersley

    Hello Marquis, you are correct in stating that companies look at more than skills. And, sometimes they want/need a level of skill that you have not yet attained. If you are getting training through a workforce re-training program, one of their jobs is to help you find employers who need the skills you have recently gained and who will continue to help you develop.
    Investing in training on your own certainly shows initiative, and the question you need to ask is “where are the employers that will be interested in hiring me based on completion of this training?” This is a critical piece of research that many job seekers don’t undertake. Connecting with employers before or during training increases the likelihood of obtaining a job once finished.
    And, just because a field is “hot” doesn’t mean that it’s right for you or that many jobs will be available at the level you qualify for. Caution and due diligence is always required!
    I wish you all the best in your job search.

  • Marquis crumpton

    People are still not getting hired by those workforce programs either. I was never eligible for them because of these hoops and jumps you had to go through and it would take 4-6 weeks for a yea or nay from the government.

    I have went to them many different times and took a lot of workshops still nothing for me. I have the many stories of people going there and complaining that these companies don’t take the training services seriously either because you were not getting paid nor had the previous experience in the past to be employable.

    Those training programs are expensive if you had to pay for it yourself, although, the women’s center I was told could help me if I applied for a scholarship but would need to speak to the educational coach about that. I am not yet ready to take that step yet.

  • Tigger59

    It’s very hard to remain positive when 100% of the negativity I’ve been receiving during my job search is from my family. They are telling me to take jobs well below my skills because that’s ALL I appear to be worth.

    Or when the job programs I’ve signed up with offer little to no support and prefer helping new citizens who can barely communicate in English.

  • Marquis crumpton

    I agree. The programs haven’t helped me at all and it just leaves me more frustrated….

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