5 mistakes job hunters make and how to fix them

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by Catherine Holland

azfamily.com

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 10:44 AM

Updated Friday, Sep 23 at 11:01 AM

PHOENIX – With employment as high as it is, the competition for jobs is incredibly fierce. With the job market as tight as it is, there’s no room for error. Career consultant Kaplan Mobray, author of “The 10Ks of Personal Branding,” says many job hunters sabotage themselves without even knowing it, making some common but easy-to-fix errors.

Mobray says it’s essential that you know what you want, because the window of opportunity can close extremely quickly. Basically, when an opportunity arises, you have one chance to seize it.

The first mistake many people make is focusing solely on posting their résumés online.

“A lot of people post their résumé and just sit back and wait,” Mobray said. “You still have to get out and network and connect with people. … That’s the way you get a job today – really putting yourself out there.”

The second common mistake is not including references who can vouch for you.

“We’re still in the age that who you know does support what you do in terms of your job,” Mobray said. “It is an age in which people can support you and get you into that opportunity.”

Next, people do not pay attention to their online identity.

“Your online brand and your offline brand should be consistent,” Mobray explained. “A lot of people go into the interview with a great résumé, but they have all these crazy pictures on Facebook. … Because of that, they may be denied the opportunity, even though they’re a great candidate.”

Potential employers do their research on applicants and that research often includes a look at social media sites and activity.

Speaking of research, that’s the fourth common mistake job hunters make. They do not research the companies to which they are applying nor do they properly prepare for the interview.

“Getting a job is like training for a marathon,” Mobray said.

Training doesn’t only mean building a working knowledge of your potential employer, it’s also how you present yourself from attire to tone of voice and eye contact.

“It’s really important to focus on preparing for the interview, not just researching the job,” Mobray said.

The last common mistake is not using the time you are unemployed to building new skill to make yourself more marketable.

“If you are sitting on the couch just waiting, you are doing yourself a disservice,” Mobray said. “Get out there and learn a new language. Get more tech savvy. Volunteer your time to build your skills. That’s the way that you get back to work because your future employer will look at what you did while you were out of work, as well as what you will do in a job.”

To learn more about Mobray, log onto www.kaplanmobray.com or call 845-358-6105.

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