Kiss Me – I’m a Job Seeker

date nightI am neither the first (by a long shot), nor will I be the last (I can guarantee) person writing about how looking for a job is like dating. I truly think whenever some HR, Recruiting or Career blogger wants lots of clicks they write a post on the subject; guaranteed to be internet traffic gold. These posts usually contain all sorts of advice about creating your online profile (if using an online dating site), and understanding that the 1st interview is like the first date (“just getting to know you!”).

But I have yet to see someone write anything about how, if at all, women approach this process differently than men.  I wonder if they do?

For a number of years the ladies looking for love have been told they need to come out of pretty pretty princess land and learn to “date like a man.” The moony-eyed romance-starved gals have been told:

  • Don’t set out with the intent of finding “the one”; date multiple people to keep your options open
  • Realize that dating comes in stages; it will likely take months to become the girlfriend – not three dates
  • Don’t be so quick to take yourself ‘off the market’
  • Don’t overanalyze every action, word or piece of minutiae from a text message, phone call or in person interaction

Recently a dear friend of mine (female) stuck her toes in the dating waters and launched her online quest for love; she knows what she wants – a long-term relationship – and is clear about it. Good for her. But, like many of my female friends before her, as soon as she began some conversations with one particular guy she scrubbed her online dating profile. This was prior to even meeting him for the first time.

That’s like having a phone screening interview with the recruiter and taking down your Monster or LinkedIn profile. Or holding off on networking for any other job opportunities until you know for sure if you’ve landed this one.

I have another friend (female) who landed a gig, thought it was “the one” and immediately ceased all online activities in the mistaken belief it would demonstrate to this new employer her unwavering commitment. The job ended up not being “the one” and when she was back on the market shortly thereafter she had to start from scratch.

Sometimes these clichés are clichés for a reason; I’ve had numerous girlfriends over the years who’ve met a dude, had one date and immediately began planning for the picket fence and a houseful of babies. Is this solely a chick thing? I’m sure it’s not. There are guys out there who act like this in the dating world although we, perhaps unfairly, think of them as stalkers more than romantics.

So whether looking for a job or looking for love I say keep your options open. Hold hands. Assess kissing ability. Run a chemistry experiment; and then run it again.

Unless you want to go the courtship route a la the Duggar family.

Yeah; I didn’t think so.

6 comments

  1. Candidate Strategy = Get on base!

  2. Lee Moreau says:

    This assumes that people have the luxury of not settling for the first thing they find….NPRs pieces on the economy and all have stories upon stories of people putting in 400+ applications and only getting one or two interviews. What are your thoughts on that?

    • Robin Schooling says:

      All the more reason @Lee to stay “active.” I’ve run into people that get that first interview (or even a job offer) and cease all efforts and, as they’ve put all their eggs in one basket, stop activities for any other opportunities. Just the other week an acquaintance got a job offer, gave notice to her existing employer, and stopped all networking and related activities. “This is the one!” she thought (even though she wasn’t overly excited about it). Guess what? Job offer was rescinded (“we’ve decided not to fill the job”), her existing position was no longer available and she was back at square one. Absent a real-actual-binding contract with pay-out options and whatnot (akin to “we’re in a committed relationship” in the dating world) I say ALWAYS keep your options open.

      This, of course, is different than staying “active” in the dating scene once there’s a ring-on-it…. 😉

  3. caracarroll says:

    Robin great advice here and as a recent “off the market” job seeker I have no intention of taking my profiles down/making them private 1.Till I start the new job 2.I have been at the new job for several months 3.I do not think I will even take them down altogether but probably remove myself so many alerts. However, I will STILL keep up on my networking, I will STILL stay involved serving on the 3 professional boards, I will STILL add to my LinkedIn profile and once I begin the new job I will add my new duties and responsibilities, I will STILL keep my resume updated with my recent work. @Lee Networking, being involved, and helping those around you are key things with the job search. Make it about those you can help and not all about you, Pay it Forward. Keep balance, have hobbies, be social, do not put all your efforts into online applications, as you may know it is draining. Once your spirit is broken or you become jaded it will show!

    Funny thing once I accepted this job offer (this is my first offer but with a good company I do not feel like I am settling), I have been contacted more than ever from recruiters. One even who I applied with over a year ago, did I mention I have been at this for a long time?, who said “You were one of our top candidates”…Really? If I was such a top candidate why was I still looking for a job over a year later. The thing with dating is you probably know when it isn’t going well. With job search you rarely do, you can ask for feedback all day long, but good luck with getting an honest response. @Lee The thing I have learned is all you can do is your best in interviews, and then forget them. Move on to the next application, the next invite for an interview, the next contact, etc. If it was meant to be it will be, but never “think” you are going to get an offer, never “think” it went well, and never ever start taking yourself off the market until your butt is in the new job..and maybe not even then.

  4. Kelly O says:

    To be perfectly honest, the only real difference for me is that even when you find a good match in the workplace, it’s still smart to keep an eye out for what’s going on out there in the proverbial “scene.”

Leave a Reply