Job Search Tactics to Avoid

job search tactics

I often get calls from job seekers who want me to help them optimize their LinkedIn profiles. These job seekers get it! They know it’s ugly out there and they need to stand out from the crowd. As a potential job candidate, you are being researched to determine if you are right or wrong for the job. Your LinkedIn profile is most often your first impression and digital introduction with the recruiter or hiring manager or HR professional. It must cast you as a polished professional and someone who can get the job done!

Out of Date Job Tactics to Avoid

I stumbled upon an interesting article this morning about outdated job search tactics. The job search process has changed radically over the last 5 years. We have become more technologically savvy as Social Networking has become ubiquitous. I remember 10 years ago, the reigning piece of advice was to make sure your name yielded NO SEARCH RESULTS on the Internet! Imagine that today! If you don’t have any search results for your name, what have you accomplished? Nothing.

Reading 5 Out-of-Date Job-Search Tactics, there were a few tactics that jumped out at me. Remember dedicated résumé paper and envelopes? There’s no point now purchasing fancy paper to print your resume and cover letter. Your resume will travel the information highway and digitally end up in people’s hands. Instead, make sure your resume is formatted simply and contains good, strong content.

You should also avoid addressing cover letters with Dear Sir or Madam or To Whom It May Concern. Why? Because companies are transparent nowadays. You can find the hiring manager’s name on LinkedIn with two clicks of the mouse!

The article also advises avoiding long lists of bullets for each job listed in your résumé. This is something that also translates to your LinkedIn profile. You don’t want to say too much and risk disqualifying yourself. You also don’t want to list all your duties. Talk about key accomplishments. Use numbers, show your success in percentages, dollars, time savings, etc.

I am just going to quote this paragraph because it’s so important:

Limit yourself to two or three bullets for each of your past jobs. A short, bulleted point that tells the reader what you’ve gotten done in your career and how you roll—“When our two biggest rivals merged, I launched a grass-roots e-mail marketing campaign that ramped sales 20 percent”—beats the heck out of long lists of tasks and duties or general statements like “solved tricky customer service issues.” Use your résumé to tell your story. Give it a human voice, a breezy tone, and quick, pithy stories to bring your power across on the page. No one cares about your daily tasks. (Most of us can extrapolate those from your job titles, anyway.)

It’s a different world out there. You have to change your mindset. It’s all about putting forth a professional image that showcases what you’ve done and WHAT YOU CAN DO. Your image spans more than just your resume. Gain control and brand yourself… you will be unstoppable!

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  1. Hi Donna
    I listened to you on the Focus Group and am glad someone can explain LinkedIn. I have worked for the same state agency for 25 years, in 6 different positions. My mental block is around how to talk about skills and expertise in various positions but in the same organization. Is it best to list positions as separate jobs or heroic accomplishments as a list over the years? All positions did not use the same skills.
    Thank you

    1. Hi Doug!

      Since you were at the same agency for 25 years, I would suggest breaking it up into 6 different positions… or at the very least 3 different positions. Make sure in your Experiences descriptions, you state that you were PROMOTED. “In 2007 I was promoted to Senior Account Manager where I was tasked with…” You can also optimize the position title with some of the different keywords to describe the new position, “Senior Account Manager | Sales & Marketing | CRM | Solution Selling”

      My book, LinkedIn Makeover, talks about this in greater detail, you may want to check it out:

      Hope that helps!


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