I think the fear of standing out keeps a lot of people from pursuing opportunities that they know are *perfect* for them. It’s scary to go after something that you really want, especially if it means having to take a risk–stand out–in the process.
In an ideal world, the job search process would be just about matching the best candidates with the best opportunities. It would be less about your actual experience, and more about your suitability, interest and abilities. In essence, it would be doing away with the whole screening process as we know it today. Three cheers for innovative thinking!!
In my perfect world, there’d be a totally different interview process – no interviews at all! Most candidates hate the interview process – a *popularity* contest as one of my clients recently described it. If you blow the interview, you’re probably not going to get the job. Instead, you could apply to any job that was interesting to you… and, one that you felt you would have the ability to do. Sounds reasonable… at least, this is what I frequently hear from clients who want to do something different, take a new path — that their abilities should count more than their experience.
Oh I know… companies will try and tell us that they’ve tried to come up with screening tools that match the applicant to the right job. But come on, the process still heavily relies on your resume content and your interviewing skills.