3 More Reasons You Can’t Get a Job & No One Will Tell You Why

What Could be Holding Back from Getting the Job

Last week we published a blog post on 4 reasons why you can’t get a job and no one wants to tell you why.  If you missed, click here.  We focused mostly on marketing and pre-interview strategies holding you back from getting your qualified foot in the door.  This time there’s more.  

Your resume looks awesome and your social profiles and online personal branding really shines.  Maybe you get a lot of calls for job interviews, and you meet with a recruiter or hiring manager, but that is where your luck ends.  No matter how many interviews you go on or resumes you submit, you still can’t get the job.  Hell, you’d settle for a job or any job even if it wasn’t THE job.

3 More Reasons You Can’t Get a Job

  • You’re Disqualifying Yourself.  There is something you are saying, doing, or divulging that is scaring those hiring managers away.  Sometimes it’s nerves and sometimes you overshare.  I once had a job seeker announce to me during an interview randomly that it was against his constitutional right to wear a seatbelt.  His announcement had nothing to do with the job and up until his statement, the interview was going well.  It was so random, and he actually interrupted an interview question with his statement.  I become uncomfortable, and the interview went down hill from there.  I didn’t call him back for a second interview, and as a recruiter I didn’t give him any job interview feedback which is why I hope maybe he reads this post.
  • Your Appearance Sends Conflicting Messages.  Like wearing a thigh high mini skirt and hooker heels to a job interview for a bank teller position or the wrinkled shirt complimented by the yellow mustard stain.  I’ve seen my fair share of candidates become disqualified for positions because of excessive jewelry, piercings, tattoos, or unusual job interview attire.  While I’m all for standing out in a crowd and individualism, you have to play the company’s game.  This means fitting in and wearing professional and conservative dress that is dictated by the type of industry and company culture of where you are interviewing for the job.  This means wearing a long sleeve shirt or jacket if you have heavily tattooed arms or toning down your blue hair color in less demanding color, cut, and style.
  • You Have a Problem with Personal Hygiene. I once went to a job interview and only realized after that my fly was down.  I didn’t get the job, and I was mortified, but hey, we’ve all been there.  Things like body odor, food in your teeth to tooting during the interview.  I’ve seen and smelt them all and they keep you from getting hired.  Shower, shave, and check and double check your appearance.  Whether it’s the sniff test for perfume or avoiding onions for lunch, you have to be prepared.  Recruiters and hiring managers won’t tell you so have a friend do a quick eye and smell test before you go to your interview.

The challenge in determining what is holding you back when no one will tell you is hard, and I remember brining a tape recorder into an interview.  I wanted to hear the interview in full and not just from my perspective.  The truth wasn’t pretty but I learned and got it right the next time.  These frustrations while in the job search weigh on your nerves and eat away at your confidence making it even harder to not appear desperate, overly eager, or more nervous doing an interview.  In your mind, this is your one shot, and putting pressure on yourself like that doesn’t generally end successfully for you.

Last week we published a blog post on 4 reasons why you can’t get a job and no one wants to tell you why.  If you missed, click here.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.


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