Apply Yourself and then Apply for That Job!

A recent discussion post on LinkedIn posed the following question:

Most IT job postings list many skill sets.  How does one overcome this challenge when you have some but not ALL of the skills sets the employer is seeking?  My answer is: first apply your efforts to sketching a true picture of yourself.  Go beyond the list of technical skills and projects completed. 


As I coach many IT professionals, I guide them to see what they offer along with their technical skills.


Use this list to honestly assess your strengths:

  • Are you great at seeing the bigger picture of individual tasks?
  • Or are you truly better at digging in to the deep details?
  • Are you great at initiating change or better at contributing once it starts?
  • If you have great expertise in your technical area, are you also good at explaining/teaching it to others?
  • Do you have experience in quickly rotating on/off project teams?
  • Or do you have a special knack for building long term relationships within a team?
  • Do you learn very quickly?
  • What about IT work excites you?
  • What level of satisfaction do you get working with end-user clients?  Any?
  • Or do you shine at working behind the scenes to build state-of-the art systems?
  • Do you have experience with different cultures even in your personal life? Valuable in a global environment.
  • How experienced are you in giving presentations in your area of expertise?
  • Are you the inventive creative techie?
  • Or are you a customer-focused IT professional?
  • What few words would your closest friends use to describe your strongest traits?

What else would you add to this list that highlights who you are?  Do not include that you can read both analog and digital clocks as did one job applicant.  Sadly this is a true story and the skill mentioned is not a standout!


Now sketch a picture of yourself with words.  Be concise, punchy, and include the benefits to your potential employer using key words from the job post description.  Not only will you have a better chance of getting a job; you will have a better chance of getting a job that fits your natural talents and interests.  If writing is truly not your strength, get help from someone who writes well.  Isn’t that what networking is all about? 


Please add your suggestions for the above list in the comments section below.  You are welcome to quote pieces of this article if you will be kind enough to post my name and the URL for this blog post.


Thanks for visiting this blog and get ready for the job fit you have always wanted! 

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Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach and Former Techie


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