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February 2013
Are You "Selling Too Hard" in Your Job Search?
by Susan Reynolds

If you're conducting a proactive job search, you are aggressively pursuing interviews and contacts. But are you making the most of this hard work, you must then leverage each of these opportunities into a productive job offer and so much hangs in the balance. Many professionals struggle with trying to figure out just how hard to sell themselves. This really sounds quite a bit like Goldilocks and the Three Bears... How do you get it just right?

Selling too hard: Whether it's in networking or in an interviewing setting, selling too hard really simply equals talking too much. The over-aggressive seller barely lets their interviewer into the conversation. They barge forward, unable to listen for the clarifying questions and comments that would have helped them to have a productive dialogue. They get the rejection letter, or in the case of networking, never hear back again, left to wonder what they said wrong.

Selling too soft: Again, whether it's in networking or in an interview setting, selling too soft equals being too passive. They basically allow themselves to be a "victim" of the conversation. Whatever the interviewer asks, they simply respond, never adjusting or really contributing creatively to the conversation. They can lose entire job opportunities by never bringing up the very things that would have been the most helpful.

Just right?? Enter any interview or networking opportunity as a business meeting at which your absolute goal is to have a dialogue... one in which you learn about the needs of the company or the individual. Then it's critical that you make sure that they learn enough about you that they see clearly how your capabilities could be helpful. Just right!

Susan Reynolds is a senior partner at NewMarket Careers in Santa Clarita, a job search, career strategy, and resume-writing firm geared toward managerial, executive, and senior level professional careers. She can be reached at or 661-755-3308.

Other Job and Career Success Related Articles:
Job Search... Just What Are You Selling?

Not Just Any Job: the Right Job

Are You Promoting Your Old Company or Your Career?

Job Search Magic


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