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What do Halloween, Love Search and Job Search All Have in Common?

Posted Aug 26 2008 4:12pm

Boo! They are all scary. So it seems most appropriate to make some parallels between a search for "Mr. or Mrs. Right" and the search for "The Ultimate Job" on this scariest day of the year...Halloween!



On one of my other blogs, Love for Boomers and 50 Plus , I posted on online dating and the sheer terror that many of us feel putting ourselves on the market for love.




"One of my ventures, Gen Plus Singles , is an online dating service, niched to 50 plus. Interestingly, women (who, incidentally, men are TRYING to find) will happily put up their profiles and browse amongst the men, but are incredibly tentative about actually signing up so they can email a fella. Men, on the other hand, are bold. They know what they want, they see it, they sign up, they email. If the woman doesn't write back, they move on to the next woman. So I always wonder, what is it about women (and, yes, I'm one) that makes us so fearful of putting OUR best foot forward? "




Well this got me thinking about the parallels between online dating and job search. About 1/2 of all jobseekers search for work online. (I wonder if 1/2 of loveseekers also search online.) And just as with online dating, it can often be a numbers game. The more resumes you send out, the more jobs you apply for, the better the odds of getting a call. Just as great jobs attract hundreds of resumes, great online profiles also attract many interested potential daters.




So, from my own experience, here is my approach to becoming less fearful in both online dating and online job search.




1) Have a great resume. Just as your online dating profile needs a good photo, a great smile and some compelling description of who you are, your resume needs to function as a good photo, great smile and a compelling description of your career accomplishments.


2) No one wants a fuddy-duddy. Take a look at online dating profiles. Haircut from the '80's? Pass. Glasses from the '70's? Pass. If your resume is simply an updated version of your jobs since 1982, then you are on the wrong track. The new format includes:




  • punchy, active, dynamic descriptors
  • results of accomplishments (not just responsibilities)
  • impactful action words
  • bullet points


3) You need quantity to get quality. If you only email once potential love match, your odds of getting a reply are very, very low. If you email 25 interesting candidates, someone will likely write you back and you may end up on a date!

Ditto for job search. If you are on a targeted job search (i.e. you need a new job...now), then you must apply for as many jobs as fit your talents. Look above the box, under the box, beside the box...but look out of the box. Just as you can't really tell the quality of the person from a picture, you can't tell a company from its job description. If you think there might be a fit?....well....there might be.



Again, from my previous post:
"Anytime I've online dated, the only true successes I've had is when I've paid for a membership, searched for the men I liked, and then emailed and emailed until I heard back from the ones I was interested in. Just as men prefer to choose, I prefer to choose. So, if you've been sitting on the fence (and this is for the men, too!), getting bored on your Saturday nights, take a gamble. Put your money where your mouth is, and start emailing. You won't know if you don't try. "


The scariest part of job search or love search is getting started. So get cracking. Fix up your profiles, show the world the best of yourself and say "Boo!" to the ghosts of Halloween!
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