Apply for Every Job, Especially When You're Unqualified

You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Job search just got an upgrade. If there’s one thing to take away from being a young professional: it’s the importance of taking advantage of every opportunity. That includes a bold approach to your job search. Apply for jobs where you’re unqualified. Even if you’re unqualified by a lot. There are plenty of openings at all sorts of companies at every level. Why not apply for the c-suite position while you’re grinding through junior-level applications? You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Here are 3 reasons why.

1. You could catch someone’s eye

It’s highly dependent on where you’re applying, but such an out-of-place application is bound to get some attention. Usually, it’s not negative attention. It’s simply shocking in a “who would do that” kind of way. Your CV/resume and cover letter are read with piqued interest – especially if well written. Even though you might not be the best fit for the job, the company will likely be keen to get someone so bold and confident on board. Perhaps you’ll get offered a position that you didn’t expect or think about. You could get put on the short-list when a position that suits you becomes open. At the very least, you could have a great networking opportunity in an otherwise hard to enter room.

2. It’s great experience

Applying for high-level jobs is generally a labor intensive process. There’s a bit more that goes into it than an internship application. While conducting your job search, don’t limit yourself. You shouldn’t think of yourself as a junior employee forever; this is a great way to familiarize yourself with the process of advancing your career. In a practical sense, it’s a great way to learn. In a mindset sense, it’s a fantastic way to believe in yourself and push yourself in the present. If you’re applying for an executive job, consciously or unconsciously, you begin thinking of yourself as an executive. You poise yourself accordingly, your mentality begins to shift, and you see things in a new light. This change does not go unnoticed. You might get additional attention at your current job or during interviews for your professionalism and great ideas. 

3. You actually might get the job

This is the best part – you might actually get the job. Your future employers could be blown away by your efforts that, despite your lack of qualifications, they deem you’re the best candidate for the job. Age doesn’t have to work against you, it can serve as an asset that highlights your initiative and value. Your lack of experience allows you to see things in a different way that could prove invaluable for an executive team. 

The worst that can possibly happen is you get rejected and spend some time on something that doesn’t come to fruition. You learned, you got your name out there, you tried, and you know better for next time. Conduct your job search with zest and curiosity. Apply for jobs where you’re unqualified. It is an opportunity – take it.

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