I stopped applying for office jobs. Here is why.

Hi. I hope your day is going well. As I am writing this blog, the weather in our place is very cloudy with thunderstorms. Not raining yet but I bet it will pour down heavily because the sky is very dark. Anyway, I will not be writing about weather today so let’s move on to my subject. I have applied for a ton of positions with different companies since I was laid off a year ago. And after a year, voila…..I am still unemployed!

I have sat down for a lot of interviews including panel interviews, skype and phone interviews and it was really tiring and frustrating. I felt frustrated and disappointed and I thought that I shouldn’t have felt that way and just move on and pretend it was nothing. But hey, I am only human! It’s natural to feel that way sometimes.

I have a lot of emails like this… “although your skills and experience are impressive, we have found a more suitable candidate for this position…”. (To lessen my heartache for being rejected, I was imagining the email was actually an audio file with the voice of cookie monster, haha!). Yes, the standard content of informing you that you were not selected. And yes, the suitable candidate is someone who met the job descriptions. You have capabilities, that’s good! You have a lot of potential? Very good! The thing is, do hiring managers consider these things? My answer is “Maybe or Maybe not!”.

A few years back, I saw the LinkedIn profile of a former colleague. We were on the same team in our previous company so I know the details of the tasks that we were doing in our job. I was surprised to see that there were some details in her profile that were not part of our deliverables. Well, she had exaggerated the role in her profile and anyone who read that will be impressed. I had a silly grin because I knew that the significant part of it was not true. Well, it helped her get to her dream job. Good for her. I am not putting this piece of story here to degrade anyone but I just would like to make a point here. She is now handling a senior position in a multi-national company which means she had successfully managed to deliver as expected and maybe more than expected. She had managed to climb her way up the corporate ladder and I believe her talent and capabilities helped her achieve that. Whether she met the job description or not, she was able to achieve something big. Splendid!

As for me, I have decided to stop applying for an office job. If I will be evaluated based on job description alone then I do not want to waste my time anymore going to interviews with people who do not consider capabilities in the equation. I know job description is the starting point in evaluating job candidates. But having met the job description does not guarantee that a candidate will be a good performer. It also does not guarantee that the decision to reject other candidates who did not fit the job description is a smart move. You may want to read this interesting article “You do not fit into my narrow description” written by Oleg Vishnepolsky.

Yes, I did not fit in because I am much more than their narrow job descriptions!