John Hadley's Career Accelerator Blog
Seek Answers to Your Career / Career Search Challenges

July 2020
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Focus Your Search
Filed under: General, Networking
Posted by: John Hadley @ 9:31 pm

I wrote an article on focusing your career search, and received the following comment

The Focusing topic sounds interesting, since we are often told– even in the same breath– to focus but “consider wider possiblities.”  Hopefully, you cover “overfocusing” as well– the “third finger manicurist” syndrome as I call it.  In such cases there is focus and differentiation, but not much of a meaningful market or application.

My response

My experience is that lack of focus is a much greater problem than overfocusing.  If you do a great job of explaining exactly what you are passionate about, and the types of results you can provide or problems you can solve, it opens up a meaningful dialog.  Even if that’s not what I might be able to connect you to, I’ll remember you when I hear about something that might be a possibility.  And I may still present you with some ‘wider possibilities’ to consider, once you’ve attracted my interest. 

What may mask itself as an “overfocusing” problem is the person who gets stuck down in the details of what he or she does, instead of focusing on potential accomplishments and results.  I won’t get very excited about someone who tells me he is a thrid finger manicurist (titles and duties aren’t particularly interesting); a better conversation will come from telling me that he helps people maintain the health of their fingers.

One of the strongest candidates I ever interviewed told me he really didn’t want the job I had to offer, and proceeded to tell me exactly what role he wanted.  It led to a great discussion, and before he left the office, I made him the best possible job offer I could to try to attract him to my operation.

You can get the article that prompted this, Don’t Kill Your Career Search With Lack Of Focus!”, here:

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