Who doesn’t love a forkful of one of grandma’s mouth-watering recipes? Whether it’s her tasty homemade lasagna, sugary-sweet cherry pie, or delicious pernil, why would you ever want to change such yummy meals? After the latest episode of Top Chef and a few bites of your coworker’s leftovers, however, you begin thinking about shaking things up a bit. Whether you decide to substitute beef for tofu or you realize that Nonna is getting a little too basil-happy with her pasta sauce, change can be a good thing. This is an opportunity for you to enjoy some creative freedom by putting a new spin on an original recipe.
Just as making edits to a time-honored recipe can have your family suddenly salivating for your food, switching up the way you search for a job can provide unexpected and rewarding results. Too often, we rely on the same methods we’ve used throughout the years when starting our quest for a new position. After all, it landed you a job before, so why would you change a proven formula?
The World is Changing
While you may have found success with your former methods, it doesn’t hurt to improve on some of the tactics you use. Before digital advancements allowed for resumes to be submitted electronically, job hunting involved physically walking into a company and filling out a paper application. That was how many people landed their first, second, and third jobs. At some point, this process became outdated. If you walk into a company today, 99% of the time you will be redirected to their website to apply.
Just because walk-ins were a successful part of scoring a new job in the past, doesn’t mean you should disregard opportunities that require an online application today. Employers have adopted technology-driven practices to mirror the needs of the modern job seeker and they are looking for candidates that demonstrate adaptability as well. Grandma may still cook up a large plate of fried food, but we now know that healthier options not only exist, but can be just as delicious, with better benefits.
It’s not unusual for your resume to be a little skinny when your hunting for your first or second job. As you get older and gain more experience, however, you’ll start to notice your resume getting longer and longer. At some point, it’s time to go back to the drawing board and see what you can cut out. While you may think all the experience you’ve accumulated is noteworthy, overcrowded and lengthy CV’s are often quickly discarded by recruiters and hiring managers. If you’re not getting the results you hoped for, trim off some of the fat and begin tailoring your resume in a manner that aligns with the position you’re applying for.
What Sets Your Meal Apart?
Ah, the classic argument over whose mother makes the best *insert delicious meal here*. In a world teeming with high-quality, appetizing meals, how do you make sure the recipe you swear is the best stand out from the crowd? Job searching today has become increasingly competitive, with scores of job seekers all vying for the same position as you are. With so many candidates showcasing experience that’s similar to yours, it’s imperative that you take the necessary steps to ensure your resume stands out - and I don’t mean using a bright green font or dressing the margins up with flower pictures. Show your prospective employer that you’ve invested time in researching their company by customizing the language you use to fit their core values and needs. Only highlight experience that is applicable to the role you’re applying for.
Experience New Flavors
Even though you grew up learning how to make one type of cuisine, you’ve most likely branched out over the years and added new dishes to your culinary skills. Maybe you grabbed a bite to eat with friends and decided to try a meal that your waitress highly recommended. Despite never even hearing about this particular dish, it’s love at first bite. Later that night you find yourself browsing YouTube for step-by-step instructions on how to replicate the recipe.
As with trying new cuisines, sometimes we need to experiment with new strategies when it comes to our job search. You may be limiting yourself to one kind of job title, which hasn’t produced any results. It’s a good idea to expand your horizons and see what else you can do with your expansive skill set. What you find may be more fulfilling and even pay better.
Take the Leap
We all want to think that our time-proven recipes will be well received throughout the years. The truth is, just like your recipe book is always changing, so should your job searching techniques. If you’re making the decision to move onto the next best thing, you should want to present yourself in a more improved way and you owe it to yourself in your search to try different methods. Whereas you found yourself doing the same old thing at every company, tuning up your hunt could open up a door that could be the one you were waiting for.