Don’t Make These Mistakes When You’re Looking For a Job

Job hunting can be overwhelming and stressful, especially when you’re the only breadwinner in the family. It would be my considered suggestion – as one who was forced into this situation – you’ll want to have a steady job while you’re growing an online or freelance at home work option.

There are many freelance positions that may be right up your alley, or that you might create for yourself. In fact, most entrepreneurs will tell you that you’ll make more money working for yourself than you will working for someone else. In order to succeed at anything you try to achieve – whether it’s finding a new job or starting a new business – it’s important that you push past the fear of failure to find the success you desire.

Job hunting may initiate feelings of fear, and even comments from your family, like “You’ll never work again!” “Why are you looking for a new job when you have a perfectly respectable one now?” “Do you know how BAD this market is now?”

None of these questions should throw you off your game. They SHOULD trigger questions that you need to find the answers for – but they shouldn’t stop you from going for what you want. But, like becoming an entrepreneur, it’s probably best that you look for a job while you still have one. In this way, you come at the challenge from a position of power. You don’t NEED another job – you WANT another job.

You might not like the one you have now, but it’s still paying the bills.

There are strategies you should use as you start job hunting. These are strategies that help you identify the job you want, the one you should apply for, and how to make those applications become job offers. It’s also a good idea to remember that an offer doesn’t mean you must accept it. You accept the offers only you want to accept. Never accept one job because you want to get out of the job you have now – it’s often like jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire.

Other mistakes you might make when you’re searching for another job:

  1. Don’t take a job in another field without first doing your due diligence. Take personality assessments, talk to people in the field you want to work in, talk to the Small Business Association, do research online and read, read, read.
  2. Cast your net wide and deep. In other words, don’t limit your possibilities to just the jobs, companies and people you know about. Network with people on LinkedIn, at church and at other companies. This is exactly how I was able to move from one hospital where my boss was making my life Miserable – with a capital M – to a hospital where I made friends, gained great experience that led to my next great job, and found a home.
  3. Money is never the deciding factor. If money were the deciding factor, then you would be satisfied with the job you have if your boss paid you more.
  4. Don’t expect others to tell you what to do. This includes career counselors. Only you can make the decision about the job you want. If others make the decision for you, then you have someone to blame. In life, the only one responsible for the decisions you make is you. It’s a lesson you teach your children, so it’s time to live out.
  5. You won’t find your next job overnight. Changing jobs or careers takes considered and thoughtful action. Impatience will likely land you in the wrong job, working for the wrong boss.
  6. If the shoe doesn’t fit, don’t wear it. No job, no amount of money, and no promise is worth working in a job that doesn’t fit you, your family or your lifestyle.
  7. Test drive your new job. You are never too old to get an internship or go back to school to gain new skills. But, before spending money on an education you might not use, look for an internship (paid or unpaid) in the job or field you want.


Is there a job you want but they don’t think you can do the job? Take a two week vacation from your current job after convincing the boss in the position you want that you’ll work for two weeks “on spec.”  They pay you but neither of you are under any obligation to continue the arrangement after two weeks.

This type of arrangement works best for positions where the work you do in the immediate time period has an immediate impact on the company.


If you don’t take a chance then you won’t know if you could have succeeded.

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