We often have to kiss a few frogs before we find our soul mate.
Our quest for finding the perfect job is no different. It is important we don't give up after a handful of duds and rejections - the right one is out there. Just like when you find love, once you find your dream job, you can be the happiest person ever.
Take a look at these 10 basic rules that lead to success in both your personal and professional life.
1. PERFECT YOUR PROFILE
You work hard to make sure your dating profile says the right things about you, and that it truly reflects what you're looking for in a dating partner, don't you? Your CV is no different - it is what will get you that first contact with an employer. You may spend hours preparing your CV, but employers treat CVs like profiles on Tinder, spending only a few seconds reviewing it before they put you in the "yay" or "nay" pile! So, make sure your CV is well written (typo free) and up-to-date, represents you well and conveys your many strengths and skills well.
2. LOOK GOOD, FEEL GOOD PT. 1: FIRST IMPRESSIONS COUNT
There is an old saying that goes "you only have one chance to make a first impression". A first date means you'll want to make a fantastic first impression. So, just as you would check out the location of the date to ensure that you dress appropriately, make sure you study the general dress code of the industry, so that you can dress the part.
3. LOOK GOOD, FEEL GOOD PT. 2: BEAM WITH POSITIVITY
You know you shouldn't fall into the trap of using the first date as an excuse to bad-mouth your ex or go into why your previous relationship didn't work. The same applies at your job interview. When people first meet you, they want to see the positive and cheery side of you. Avoid using terms that describe current and previous experiences as totally dire and try not to blame or bad-mouth others. Always be positive because negative chit-chat just sets a negative atmosphere, something we want to always avoid.
4. WHO CARES ABOUT THE OTHERS
The person sitting opposite you on a first date will likely not want to hear out loud that they are not the only ones you are dating, even if they know that is the case! Similarly, as far as an employer is concerned, they want to know that you are passionate about working for them and for only them! But hey, if they ask, craft your answer carefully. Make sure you read up on the company and the job. Think about a company's core values and do your homework on the company so that you can explain why you are in their interview chair and not the competitor's.
5. KEY AND NECESSARY POINTS ONLY
Just as you wouldn't reveal on a first date that you like to bite your toenails around midnight on a Thursday, it might be wise to not mention that you regularly post negative comments about your ex-boss on Facebook (and you shouldn't be doing that anyway!). Additionally, rambling on can often lead to revealing too much. Make sure you answer the questions asked and keep your answers honest, relevant and concise.
Mirroring body language is a great way to bond and to build understanding - it's about connecting. Note that this one works both ways and you can take an opportunity to check whether your date is mimicking you; if so, it's likely they're into you. Similarity breeds success. When mirroring goes well, the person you're speaking with, whether a date or an interviewer, deems you trustworthy because, subconsciously, they find similarities that connect you both.
7. MIND YOUR Ps AND Qs
Whether you are trying to impress your date, or your interviewer, someone who is ill-mannered or does not follow the correct etiquette will quickly elicit negative impressions. At an interview, it is very easy to quickly destroy all good impressions formed from a good CV or having an impressive career thus far. Interviewers want people that are not only good at work but also pleasant to be around. So, be polite and kind to everyone you meet at the company, just as you would to the bar staff when on a date.
8. BE OPEN-MINDED
Just because someone you meet doesn't appear to be your type right off the bat on a first date, it is still important to keep an open mind. Why? Because you might still have fun and the person may grow on you. In a job interview it is good for interviewers to know that you are able to adapt to challenges and the ebbs and flows of the workplace if something doesn't work instantly. Flexibility does not mean that you need to be a pushover, but it does show you have the ability to adapt your leadership style or work approach if you see that one method is not working.
9. BE DESIRABLE, NOT DESPERATE
Repeated rejection after a string of failed first dates can leave us feeling jilted and desperate. This odour of desperation is always discernible from your demeanour. Similarly, while you may be at the end of your tether with all the rejection letters and fruitless job applications and interviews, try to keep curb your anxiety, and show that potential employer your real worth instead! Do not refer to inadequacies unless asked (again, craft your answer carefully if asked). Be calm and confident.
10. IT'S NOT ALL BAD. RELAX!
In the hours leading up to a first date, your nerves can eat away at you and put you in the wrong mood to meet someone. If you come across as relaxed, rather than on edge, not only will you come across as more confident, but it is likely that you will enjoy your meeting a lot more. This in turn has a positive effect on the other person. An interview, much like a first date, is a two-way conversation, so try to relax, smile, be engaging and have a good time.
Even though it is hard to find that someone special, we keep at it and continue to put ourselves out there until we do. We need to spend both time and effort upfront in trying to meet people, and then try to build up a connection - possibly a relationship - with the right person, of course. Your first job interview is remarkably similar to a first date and they elicit similar emotions. They both require the vulnerability to put yourself out there and allow others to judge you. Your best qualities are on display and imperfections are carefully swept under the rug. Keeping your emotions in check during the process will lead to making the perfect match. The process is certainly draining, awkward, anxiety-provoking and discouraging. But once you find that connection it is exciting, fulfilling and, of course, life-changing.