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The Cover Letter Isn't Dead & 7 Other Myths About Job Hunting

There were so many things that I believed about job hunting that turned out to be untrue. I met the listed qualifications, but I wasn’t...

Workin’ Girl

When I was preparing to graduate from college, I was confident that I would have employers beating down my door, eagerly waiting to throw job offers in my face. I had an impressive GPA, I was very involved on campus, I had experience in various leadership positions, and on top of that I had internship experience. I was so confident that it would be easy for me to get a job that I didn’t start my job search as early as I should have.


On top of having a big ego, there were so many things that I believed about job hunting that turned out to be untrue. I met the listed qualifications, but I wasn’t getting called back immediately. Although I had a LinkedIn, no one was responding to me. On top of all of that, I even had a bomb resume, but it seemed like no one cared.

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Just like me, we all believe in several misconceptions about job hunting, and it affects the way that we search for jobs and apply ourselves. Listed below are the top 8 myths about job hunting that either I have believed, friends of mine have believed, and probably you have believed.

Myth #1: Cover letters are dead, and no one reads them.

When I am hiring employees, I look for two things with the application: a well-formatted resume and a cover letter. For me, having a well-formatted and error-free resume is a must. Also, a well-thought out cover letter is equally important. When someone doesn’t submit a cover letter, I automatically place them in my “this person must be lazy as hell and must not really give a damn to not write one” file. Cover letters give hiring managers a unique perspective into why you are interested in the job, and how you can bring value. They give you the chance to provide more details on your job history and skills, whereas a resume may lack in. The only time when you shouldn’t submit a cover letter is if the company states so.

[Tweet " The only time when you shouldn’t submit a cover letter is if the company states so."]

Myth #2: Having a LinkedIn will make me look better.

If you’ve read my other posts, you will agree that I am crazy about LinkedIn. Although I believe that all professionals must have a LinkedIn, I also believe that you must have more than just a LinkedIn profile. By just having a LinkedIn, you are not more marketable than you were before. When you set up your profile, you have to put in work and optimize it to the highest potential. Also, it is important to be active on it by joining in on group discussions, sharing articles, or even publishing your own posts. In addition, gather recommendations from employers, coworkers, and mentors, and get them posted on your profile. Also, if you have any work that you can put on a portfolio, post it on your profile. Trust me, hiring managers love all of that stuff.

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Myth #3: An employer will only interview me during business hours

I remember when I was searching for my first job out of college. It was really hard for me because I was convinced that I only had so many hours in the day to interview. My lunch break was one hour, and my job was located in a high-traffic area, so trying to sneak away for a interview during lunch wasn’t the smartest idea. Also, at the time of my job search, I didn’t have alot of PTO, so it wasn’t like I could easily take off of work. Once I started working at my current job and doing my own interviewing and hiring, I realized that people make time for what they want.

[Tweet "Hiring managers make time for people that they want."]

So in other words, if there was someone that I was interested in interviewing, I didn’t mind coming in a little earlier or staying later if needed to interview them. Trust me, the hiring manager probably wants you more than you want them, especially if the job has been open for a while. When you are job hunting, if you cannot genuinely interview during normal business hours, ask to be interviewed maybe a little earlier or later than normal. Since you got called for the interview, the hiring manager obviously thinks you are a good catch. Unless you are requesting a crazy, inconvenient time to interview, I’m sure they will find a way to work with you and your schedule.

Myth #4: If a job was posted more than a month ago, it is probably already filled.

When a job is posted, sometimes it takes longer than expected to start the hiring process. This could occur because of new demands at the company, new projects that now have more priority, or maybe the hiring manager becomes ill or needs to travel for work. Whatever it may be, situations arise that are sometimes out of the hiring manager’s control. As much as we would like to post a job, start interviewing the next day, and then send out the offer, things don’t always work out as we wish. When you are job searching, don’t neglect the jobs that were posted weeks or even months before. On job boards like Indeed, it costs the company extra money to repost jobs so that they can appear on the first page of the job board list. Most companies will not want to pay the extra money to be listed on the first page, so as the job doesn’t get filled and weeks past, that awesome job may be on page 25 instead of 1.

Myth #5: If I meet all of the qualifications, I will get an interview or the job.

Although you may meet all of the qualifications for the job, you may not get interviewed for a couple of reasons: 1.) You are over-qualified and may appear to be out of the company’s pay budget. 2.) When you applied, the hiring manager already started the interview process and found someone else they wanted to hire. 3.) There were other candidates that were even more qualified. 4.) You were qualified on paper, but when the hiring manager looked you up on social media, they saw a totally different person that they were not impressed with.

There are even more reasons why you may not get an interview once you apply for a job, but you should never let that discourage you. Also, please remember that your qualifications is just a small part of what the employer looks for and wants. The employer will look for someone that will fit in with the company culture and that has more impressive qualities than just the basic, preferred qualifications that were listed.

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Myth #6: Employers will respond immediately if they are interested.

As I mentioned above, there are so many circumstances that can delay the hiring process. For example, I posted a job over two months ago and haven’t been able to start interviewing because of unforeseen circumstance (yeah, that sucks, I know).

I will tell you, I don’t recommend waiting around for an employer once you’ve submitted your application - unless it is your dream job of course. Once you submit your application, hope for the best, and apply to more companies that interest you. Never put all of your marbles in one jar.

[Tweet "Never put all of your marbles in one jar."]

Myth #7: My interviewer is qualified to interview.

Ahhh this is my favorite myth! From my experience in hiring, from conducting individuals interviews to participating in group interviews, I can honestly say that every interviewer hasn’t been properly trained. I fully believe that to be an interviewer, you have to have a certain personality. You should be fair, able to easily decipher between the truth and bullshit, and must be organized. Sadly, every person that is given the interview torch doesn’t know how to use that power correctly, and it affects your interview and the possibility of getting the job. Unfortunately, you do not have any power over who interviews you. If you did a bomb job in your interview but didn’t get the job, stop thinking that you are the problem because it is a good chance that is not true.

Myth #8: Job searching during the holidays is outrageous.

This is a very popular misconception that has been around for a while. If a job is posted during the holiday season, nine times out of 10, the hiring manager is around to conduct interviews. Although some people go on vacation during the holidays, many people do not and after Christmas, they are back at work. Just because it is the holiday season doesn’t mean you should neglect your job search. Continue to grind and hustle hard until you get your dream job.

What other misconceptions and myths have you heard (or believe)? Drop a comment below and let me know!

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