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information overload

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Job hunting is one huge information overload. There is a glut of free advice for the job hunter.  Here are some broad categories to name a few:

Tools and advice for ...
   1. determining a career path
   2. how to go about finding a job
   3. writing a cover letter
   4. writing a resume (one for machines one for when you actually are invited to submit a resume to a real live person)
   5. preparing for a phone interview
   6. preparing for an interview
   7. how to use the internet for the job search
   8. how to network

And each of the above has its own bucket of research. You have to research the company, the job and you have to research yourself. Cover letters and resumes should be geared towards the specific job you're applying for. You'd have to pick through your past and communicate experience befitting the job.

If we're supposed to have prepared answers to interview questions, how about if the company would send us the questions at the time the interview is offered and say, "Be prepared to answer these questions."

Sometimes the advice is inconsistent among the various experts, and a choice has to be made as to which opinion you'd go with.

With all this glut of information, the HR folks are expecting us to know this stuff. We appear completely dufus, careless, or ignorant if we fail to do what is "basic." (Duh, surely you are prepared to answer basic questions such as "What motivates you?" and "What is your greatest weakness?" and "Where do you see yourself five years from now?" and so forth.) With all this required research, application and practice, it's no wonder that it may well take over a year to master the game and get a job.

The professional side of me says I understand. The softer side of me says I might not want to be that wound-up, polished, ambitious candidate for a high-pressure company who is unforgiving to a little mistake.

In the meantime, I'll march on and pray that God grease the skids and help me to land in the right place.