Is Your Job Search “All Over the Map”?

Presumably, you have one primary goal for your job search: to open the door to your next job. However, it’s not enough to “know” that’s the goal if you don’t keep it in mind when you’re organizing your job search.

For example, if you take what’s called a shotgun approach to job searching, you seriously reduce your chances of having a successful search. Such an approach is defined as one that’s “indiscriminate and haphazard, using breadth, spread, or quantity in lieu of accuracy, planning,” and so on.

Job Search Focus: A Critical Factor

You can’t hit what you’re aiming at if you’re not really aiming—just pulling the trigger and hoping you hit the right target.

Focus outperforms “breadth, spread, or quantity” in many situations, including a job search.

Knowing where you want to end up in your search serves as a launch point. However, it won’t take you all the way to a successful conclusion. That requires paying attention to the essential elements you need to consider and incorporate in your job search.

Focus Means Planning

Because a job search can involve a number of elements, you do want to adopt an organized approach to it. That doesn’t mean you’re locked into the exact plan you start with, but it does indicate that you need to have the essential pieces clearly defined and included.

To avoid being “all over the map,” you need to pinpoint your desired destination (that new job). Then identify the path you have to take to reach it. When you start executing the plan, schedule reminders to yourself for occasional progress checks. It’s easy to get caught up in the intense momentum of the search, the urgency, or other considerations, and lose sight of the main goal.

Avoid Your Job Search “Gotchas”

If you tend to suffer from lack of focus when you embark on a major activity, that’s one big “gotcha” to watch out for. However, you might find others that crop up to get in your way. A little honest soul-searching could produce worthwhile results before you launch your job search. For example:

  • Are you prone to procrastinate?
  • Do you frequently make plans that require more time than you have available for a task?
  • Do you fail to take into account the actions of other people that could derail your plan?

Keep your plans and your focus realistic. That’s the best way to avoid job search “gotchas” and at the same time position yourself for a successful outcome.

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