Job Search: Are you focused on the job and not the search?

You may be so focused on the job that you forget about the search, which can cause you not to get the job or find yourself the wrong job.

Until you’ve officially signed papers and started a new job, you’re still in the job search phase with prospective employers. Searching for a job on job boards is phase 1 and interviewing is phase 2 of the search. Only after you negotatte, close the deal and get hired is your search complete. It’s the same with business – until someone pays you, they are not a customer; they are a prospective customer.


Here is what a typical job search looks like:

Look for jobs on job boards and other means → Craft resume, cover letter and other documents for the specific job listing → Apply for the job → Wait to hear back about job.

Yes! Got an interview. → Explain why you’re a great fit for the job. No meaningful questions asked about the company.  

This approach is job/role focused and is reactive. This just works for some people and in some industries.  If you’re looking to land a new and exciting job and be happy at that company, here is the new mindset I recommend:

1 – Understand what a search is. A search is an examination. Looking deeply into one’s problem to find solutions.

2 – Search within – understand who you are and what you’re looking for and what you want in a job, a work environment, and overall lifestyle. Ask yourself why? Why do I want this for my life? What will it do for me or my family? What is my desired salary? Spend some time finding the answers to these questions so you can search from the right perspective. Emotionally, spiritually, intellectually and financially.  

3 – Search externally – examine companies out there that could be a great fit for what you want at this phase of your career. Now that you know what you’re looking for, finding companies in line with your goals should be the next step.

4- Narrow companies down and do as much research as possible on them before applying. If you can, meet people who work there as well.  Ask, ‘Is this an environment where I can thrive and grow? Am I aligned with the industry, products and services? Is the industry growing or dying?’

5 – Apply and submit materials.

6 – Understand the purpose of an interview: to have a conversation, exchange and receive information. In an interview, continue to search and examine if this is a good fit for you by asking questions and listening intently to the responses. It’s a two way street.


Don’t just explain why you’re a great fit for the job; Explain why you’re a great fit for the company and team! Understand that from the beginning you are in negotiations, so be careful how you present yourself and what you say about your motivations and desired salary.

Explaining why you’re a good fit for them AND understanding why they’re good for you is the key.

Connect the dots for yourself and the interviewers and you will find success in acing your interview.