The Dark Hole of Job Applications: What To Do When No One’s Calling

You have tried everything. Your resume rocks!

You have done it all, meet with contacts, applied online, diligently worked on your LinkedIn, sent your resume to most recruiters, yet nobody calls for an interview.


Nothing is wrong, except the economy and reality is changing, and it is affecting some more than others.

In the past, you could keep your job as long as you were a faithful employee, then and for some time, you could find a job as long as you worked hard while being a good professional and you knew how to look for a job.

Related Article: 7 Strategic Habits of Highly Successful Job Seekers

Today is quite different. Employability is based not only on how you manage your career but also on how well you know yourself professionally. The ability to reinvent yourself is a must nowadays. Everything moves so fast, technology, ideas, innovation, that you, as a professional, need to able to adapt to those changes as fast as they happen.

Some people learn the hard way there is no fit for them in today’s traditional job market. It will all depend on the needs of the market at the time they are looking for a job. For some careers and levels it can the mix of the perfect storm, for others, it is easier. The problem comes when the elements for the perfect storm don’t happen, and you need to fabricate your own storm to subside. That’s the best way for me to explain the tendency to manage careers in 2016.

Now with this reality, what can you do to be successful? What is the recipe? I’m saying there is no more absolute loyalty, information, perfect resume or knowledge that will get you there! But I will give you a list of advice I give my clients that I know have kept them employable in this new reality. I hope it works for you too.

Know Yourself Professionally and Personally

At this point we know that a good resume might not be enough to reach your objectives, so start seeing yourself as a product/service that can be offered. Don’t be scared to look at your weaknesses they make up who you are.

For that, you need to go beyond your past experiences and accomplishments and know what you are capable of bringing to the table, technically speaking. Besides your technical skills, you will also need to know your limitations regarding your commercial skills. Would you be able to sell your services or not in the future? If not what are your options?

Investigate the Market

It is very likely that what you do is on high demand but under the “new” scheme of work that requires people to work very untraditionally, that is, under contract, project, from the distance, outsourced, per hour. If you are not getting the responses you want to look deeper into your industry and your position and see what is going on.

Be proactive, don’t be reactive. Meet with people both with full-time jobs and entrepreneurs to find out what insights they might have about the tendencies today in your area. One thing is what you see from your tiny perspective, and another thing is the real world out there. Don’t ask for a job, don’t complain and don’t whine, only ask for information and look for opportunities!

  1. Reinvent Yourself to Start Your Own Business. Think of the possibility of outsourcing what you do or in some cases to invest in something new. During 2015, the New Kauffman Index has risen in the 40 largest cities in the country which is an early indicator for entrepreneurship in the United States. This, plus other indicators such as the way new generations work, show us the way to go. Millennials are more independent, passionate and more of risk takers. Follow their lead!.
  2. Reinvent Yourself to Remain Employable. If you decide, after deep consideration, that you prefer not to outsource your career then, how could reinvent yourself so you could broaden your options? For example, if you are not getting calls as a Spanish to English translator, you would probably want to broaden your search to EN/ES text editor, content editor or better yet, retrain yourself to become an EN/ES interpreter. In either case, staying passive with what you have and not being proactive is what differentiates a successful professional from a not so successful one.

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Be Adaptable

Getting out of your comfort zone can be one of the best decisions to make at this point for some of you. This might be the time to look into doing that special thing you always dreamed of. Join forces with a family member, friend or investor but don’t let your fears get in the way. The worse thing that can happen to anyone at this point in their careers is to give up.

Don’t Get Stuck

I have seen too many cases of people who have been incapable of managing the loss of a job, status or the bond to a specific company. Please don’t let that happen to you. You all have a lot to give, especially to yourselves and those around you. Getting stuck waiting and waiting for a call that is probably not going to happen anytime soon is not healthy for you. Take this part of my advice seriously.

If you are a very high-level executive (senior) your search can take anywhere from 0 to 24 months. A medium level executive from 0 to 12 months, a manager from 8 to 6 months and low to entry level to 2 to 3 months. Knowing the average search times also helps!

YOU manage your career and nobody else that means, you make your career own decisions. Not the recruiters or the companies that choose to make a phone call or not.

I wish you the best making informed career decisions from now on.

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