While there is certainly a conversation to be had about the amount of work that goes into applying for a job from the basic steps to the unexpected challenges and obstacles, there are also a lot of things you will hear that are simply untrue. Of course, it is no one’s intention to spread misleading information. Rather, what happens most of the time is information will be repeated so often and by so many people it will be thought to be undoubtedly true.
The real issue about some of these myths is that they can hold you back or prevent you from trying your absolute best on your application process. For that reason, Bayt.com, the Middle East’s #1 job site has compiled a list of the ten biggest lies you will hear about getting a job in the Middle East.
Lie #1: Connections are the only way to get a job
Fact: While connections certainly don’t hurt your chances of getting a job; since they give you an advantage in knowing more about the work culture, the kind of people who exist at the organization and getting an idea of what you can add to the company; they are not everything or the only thing you need to get hired. If you expect anything beyond the edge the increased knowledge of the company will give you, you are doing an insult to your own skills and abilities. Chances are the recruiter is not going to sacrifice their ideal candidate based on your professional connections alone.
Lie #2: No one reads cover letters
Fact: A well-written, creative and fresh cover letter can get you an interview when your CV alone might not. There are, of course, employers who do not read cover letters, but with those who do, cover letters can hugely influence your chance of success. A brilliant cover letter will motivate the employer to look over your CV and consider you for the position. Remember that you can always go the extra mile and opt for a professionally written CV and cover letter that will guarantee stand-out performance.
Lie #3: If you haven’t heard back from the employer in a few days, they are not interested
Fact: Hiring is not as easy as you think, and usually takes longer than expected at each step of the process. Shortlisting and approval for the next steps can sometimes drag on. It might involve consulting with management at several levels, a crucial person may be on vacation, or there might be many candidates to sift through. Remember that patience is virtue and keep answering the phone, upbeat and friendly, check your messages frequently and keep heart! There is no reason to be a sitting duck either. Use your free time to apply for more jobs that catch your interest in the meanwhile. You never know what might turn up!
Lie #4: Job hunting around certain times of the year is a waste of time
Fact: That couldn’t be further from the truth! In fact, during Ramadan 2017, Bayt.com had more job postings than the average month. Whether there are holidays coming up, Ramadan in the air, Christmas songs on the radio, or any other festive spirit engulfing the workforce, there will always be positions that need filling. No hiring manager is going to hit pause on their search because they’re in a festive mood. Instead of letting yourself get sucked into the holiday doldrums, keep up your rhythm and continue applying for jobs.
Lie #5: Lowering your salary expectations will increase your attractiveness for the job
Fact: While you should be realistic when giving your salary expectation, undervaluing yourself with a lower salary than you deserve is not good either. Not only will you potentially settle for less, but it can give the impression that you are not confident in your worth as an employee. Instead, you should provide a reasonable salary expectation, which you can ascertain through Bayt.com Salaries.
Lie #6: Changing careers is impossible
Fact: Since the workplace is dynamic and continues to change and evolve, an increasing amount of people will change careers in their lifetime. Some will even change careers more than once. You should know that it is not impossible to change your career as long as you have a plan of action and do your absolute best to stick to it.
Lie #7: Job seekers should not have to market themselves
Fact: The notion that your CV or application should speak for itself is idealistic at best. In today’s cutthroat, competitive job market, you need to do all you can in order to stand out in a sea of job seekers. Furthermore, with the rise of the internet and digital age, personal branding is super important and can make a big difference in your chances in finding a job. You can achieve this through optimizing your Bayt.com profile. You should also ensure that your experience is fully detailed and that you have proven the validity of your skills through answering questions on Specialties or taking tests.
Lie #8: Your personal online footprint does not impact you professionally
Fact: You would be surprised how many people give consideration to how their online activities affect them professionally. Pictures, events and posts that could be deemed as inappropriate, inflammatory or otherwise unwise should never make their way onto your potential employer’s screen. You should delete these, no longer post such items or fix your privacy settings so they can only be viewed by those you trust.
Lie #9: Following up is like nagging and annoys the employer
Fact: While you definitely don’t want to seem obsessive, there is nothing wrong with following up after a period of suspended contact. It is A-OK to send an email or give a phone call to the company you are interested in, reiterate your interest, and say anything you might not have had a chance to add in the interview. Less is more when it comes to this, however, so if you find yourself reaching for the call button more than once or twice a week, you should probably distract yourself with something else so you don’t come across as too desperate.
Lie #10: There are no jobs available right now
Fact: Oh boy, this couldn’t be more wrong. On Bayt.com alone, there are over 10,000 jobs available daily, not to mention the very close reality of more jobs on the horizon in the next year. Don’t feel discouraged by people who will tell you this and, more importantly, don’t listen!
Now that we’ve gotten all that out of the way, let me end this with some parting words. It took me over a year to find a job I like and there were many points in that journey where I found myself believing the lies mentioned above, but I have never, not for a moment, found myself regretting trying so hard. You won’t regret it either.
Remember to sound off in the comments below with your feedback and questions. If there’s a blog you want to see in the future that we haven’t tackled yet, don’t hesitate to let us know.
By Dalia Larissa Abu-Sharar
This article originally appeared in Bayt.com. This article and all other intellectual property on Bayt.com is the property of Bayt.com. Reproduction of this article in any form is only permissible with written permission from Bayt.com.
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