The top 5 job search mistakes you need to stop making

Mistake #1: You don’t know what you want

Hopefully, you’ve at least narrowed your search down to a job title (or three—we actually recommend using multiple job titles when searching for postings online).

But when it comes to your resume, cover letter or interview, are you able to articulate what types of responsibilities you’re hoping to have in a job? What about your ideal work environment? How about work schedule? These are all important aspects to consider before applying.

“Get specific—what does an ideal job look like to you?” asks Lori Scherwin, founder of Strategize That, a New York City–based career coaching company..“Envision it and write it down. Doing this can help spark new ideas about what you might want to do, and where to look for it.”

Come up with at least five responsibilities that align with your interests and experience, as well your ideal work schedule and work environment. Then, take that list and compare it with the jobs you’re applying to.

Does this mean tossing aside opportunities that don’t exactly match your list? Of course not, but it does help you hone in on jobs you’d more likely be satisfied with, so you don’t waste time applying to positions that aren’t a great fit.

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