“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realise how close they were to success when they gave up.” – Thomas Alva Edison
There are millions of people with brilliant ideas that never become real. There are many other people with similar ideas or even slightly worse ones that become really successful. Why?
Many of us look with envy at the candidate that is not as experienced as us that secures a new job. “They were so lucky”, “how did they manage to get that job?”, “Wow the world is so unfair”, “they must have been helped” etc.
Okay, here is a question to ask yourself – Have you ever hit a golf ball without following through? Don’t play golf… no problems, kicked a football, hit a tennis ball or even rowed a boat… without following through on your shot or stoke? I have missed a goal and smashed a clubhouse or two by not following through in the past.
Let’s be honest it doesn’t matter if you are the very best at something you will never sparkle unless you follow through with decisive action. Not even Phil Mickelson, Roger Federer, Lionel Messi or that famous rower I cannot remember would be successful without following through on their shots, training hard and striving for success.
So maybe, that “inferior” candidate that beat us to that job was better at following through with their job search strategy than us?
Here are a few questions you need to answer honestly as a job seeker:
- Have you followed up on every lead that has been mentioned to you at a networking event or by a friend or family member? It is hard enough out there, so you must seize every bit of help you can.
- Do you follow up on new business contacts you meet at networking events and job fairs? There is no point going to an event, connecting on LinkedIn if you do not spend time building a real business connection.
- Have you ever missed the deadline for a job application because you didn’t get around to amending your cv/resume on time?Just because the deadline is next Friday at 5pm, doesn’t mean you have to wait until 4.59pm next Friday to apply.
- Do you spend enough time on your job search? One thing a job seeker has too much of is time. Ask yourself are you using it wisely.
- Do you follow up on every application submitted? You may jump from the maybe pile to the interview pile by following up on your application.
- Do you follow up on every interview you attend? Maybe send a quick thank you to the company. This can be a great time to address a question that stumped you at interview. Eg. “Since our meeting, I was thinking about how I could increase company sales and realised that I have two great contacts in the Pharmaceutical industry who may be very interested in the your new Shrink Packaging design etc.”
- Do you follow up on your unsuccessful applications? Eg. Thank them for considering your application and asking them to consider you for future vacancies that may arise. And/or asking for a meeting to get feedback on your unsuccessful interview.
Okay the list could go on, but I would harp on anymore. We will never reach our goal unless we are prepared to follow through and shoot for success.
We can beat our competition to the next job opportunity if we “Follow Through” on our job seeking efforts. And let someone else be envious of our success for a change.