Looking for work is always a difficult process. But will your outlook affect the results?
Most people know that belief in yourself – confidence – can make a big difference in our success, because of how we act and how others perceive us. But how does it affect your job search?
A recent article in The Atlantic serves as a powerful reminder of the role that confidence can play in advancing your career. Although the article focuses on the confidence gap between women and men, many of the lessons are applicable to everyone. One of the key messages in the article is that our belief in ourselves and our ability to do something largely affect how others see us and respond to us, and how likely this is to lead to success (such as getting hired or receiving a promotion).
Here is one example of how women’s confidence level can affect their careers. According to the article, most women are likely to petition for a promotion at work if they meet 100% of the requirements, while many men will go for it even if they only meet 50%. And the very fact of petitioning – asking for that promotion – is an important factor in whether an individual will be promoted.
So what does this mean for you as a job-seeker?
First of all, if you think you are a good fit for a job, don’t be afraid to apply, even if you don’t meet all of the posted requirements.
Second, remind yourself that you are a good fit before writing your cover letter or going to your interview. Be prepared to talk about the parts of your background that make you a great fit, rather than worrying about explaining the criteria you don’t meet. Focus on demonstrating that you are a fast learner who will pick up any skills you currently lack, and most importantly, the value that your existing experience will bring to the position.