Job Searching is just like Dating

At the time of writing this, it’s been six months since I started exploring other job options. I’ve been officially job single for four of those months, and have been overwhelmed by the correlations between job hunting and partner hunting. Granted, I only care about one of those searches right now, but this process has allowed me a lot of insight about both.

Indeed = Tinder ?

These days, you can find whoever you’re looking for in your life over the internet. Unless you’re specifically referred to a position by someone, perhaps like a friend setting up a blind date, you likely will find job applications on websites like Indeed, Beyond and Monster. You review a relatively-superficial description of the job, like you would someone’s online dating profile. It’s critical to understand that what you see at this stage is a glossed over version of the reality. Working day-to-day is never going to be as cute as the advertisements or profile pictures. Now, I only wish there were experience review websites like Glassdoor for personal relationships.

Organization Research = Reviewing Basic Info ?

Before you reach out to any company, it’s important to have a firm grasp on the work they do. Understand their industry sector, objectives and specific platform. This could be related to learning where your potential partner is located and general interests to see if there is any correlations to build off of.

Introductory Email = That Perfect DM Slide ?

First impressions matter, and like any initial move, it’s essential to consider your approach. Clearly and concisely showcasing your charm, value and unique traits is the main strategy for that first message. Subject lines make just as much as an impact as any pick-up line, so choose your words wisely! Be respectful and honest, and don’t pitch yourself as an annoyance to anyone whose attention you’d be receiving.

Informational Interview = Casual Date ?

Generally, informational interviews are casual meetings with people in the industry to chat about your goals, their careers, or for you to learn more about an organization they may be affiliated with. This doesn’t entail anything binding– and it’s embarrassing to assume so! Imagine it’s like having a first coffee date with someone just to see if they’re a real human beyond the screen. Your conversations tend to be pretty surface-level, but there is a mutual understanding that you both may be seeking future gain from this interaction. You never know what a coffee date can later provide for you– an intimate partner or a door into your career!

LinkedIn Request = Social Media Follow ?

Making the connection official through connecting on social media helps for future networking purposes. You’ll receive some helpful insight through learning who mutual friends are and keeping updated about their own priorities.

Official Interview = First Romantic Date ?

When you get called in to have an official interview, you obviously want to make sure you look nice. Have a strong understanding of your position, the role the interviewer seeks you to fulfill and whether you would actually be the best fit. It’s the trial run where both of you evaluate if there is chemistry. Consider what type of impression you give off and how you can highlight your best qualities (without stroking your ego).

Follow-up Email = Continuing the Conversation ?

It’s helpful to remind your interviewer and date of your interest. Sending a follow-up message is polite and opens doors for further conversation. At the same time, it’s important in this stage not to get your hopes up too much. Job searching is particularly like dating because while you can quickly develop a crush based on surface-level impressions, if chemistry isn’t mutual or remarkable enough, then you’d likely be better off searching for something better. If the conversation stops here, don’t put yourself down! You are looking for a company or a partner of just as high quality as an employer or date is looking for a perfect fit. You deserve someone just as excited about you as you are about them.

Call Back = Second Date ?

Congratulations, you’ve made it to round two! Like dating, it takes a few meetings, which can last over the duration of months, to validate the chemistry. Keep up the good work, and don’t forget to bring up new, interesting facets about yourself each time.

Offer = Big Question ?

Finally– an offer! That question of, “What are we?” has come to fruition now that you can discuss what a relationship between each of you entails. Consider what this means wisely. While it can sometimes be a double-edged sword to always hope the grass is greener on the other side, or there are better fish in the sea, it’s important to be honest with yourself if this decision is truly best for you. At the same time, it helps to test out the waters when needed, so if there is value to be gained from an experience, it’s encouraged to take a job that gets your foot in the door in the ultimate direction you desire. Don’t be afraid to prove your worth to them and negotiate standards (ie. salary or relationship expectations)!

Landing a Job = Commitment ?

Making the leap of commitment typically ties you in for a long-term ride. Most companies expect you to stay loyal for at least one year, while officially making the mark with a partner can oftentimes suggest similar expectations. However, if you’re happy with your choice, then the ultimate congratulations to you!

From there, the first month or so tends to manifest as a honeymoon phase in both new career and spousal positions. Ride the wave’s momentum and give full attention to the present; there’s a lot to learn! Fingers crossed an unfavorable quit or break up is no where near, but it’s essential to remember that you are in a mutually-beneficial relationship, and both parties deserve honest, respectful commitment to each other.

Know your worth and make sure you seek partners that only grow that value. I hope you find all that you’re seeking!