If you feel like your skills don’t match the stated expectations for the jobs you’re applying for, shift your focus to preparation. There are certain things you can do to increase your chances of being employed, even if you don’t have the perfect skillset.
Networking is the key. Be familiar with people in the industry you are interested in. This way, it’ll be easier for you to get inside information, or may even help process your application faster. However, networking requires trust. A mutually beneficial connection is crucial to finding work. Avoid applying online as much as possible and network purposefully.
Here are some key points you may want to consider when it comes to applying for jobs:
Avoid applying online. Instead, use your network to look for hiring managers that can appreciate your potential. Make contact with them from time to time to stay on their radar screen.
If you do get a chance to meet someone in your network with a position that matches what you’re looking for, demonstrate how you can do the job better than the rest, even if you don’t have the matching skill set.
Use your direct contacts. You can schedule an appointment with them, but avoid sounding too needy, disorganized, overly persistent or selfish. Make sure to make a positive impression by showing how reliable, trustworthy and credible you are.
Make up for your lack of matching requirements by sharing your success stories and how your background, knowledge and skills will benefit the organization.
Recommendations work best. If you were recommended by an acquaintance, consider yourself lucky — you are now one step closer to being interviewed. Referral by a contact makes it easier for a hiring manager to trust that you may be a good fit. Avoid using human resources as your source of leads. (Unless your career is HR-related, that is.)
Knowing that you still stand a chance even when you’re not the perfect fit for a job should motivate you in your job search. Don’t lose hope.Continue to strive for excellence. You can do it!