Why You Should Still Apply for Jobs That You Aren’t Qualified For (From A Confidence Perspective)

If you read, this Financial Gym article, then you already know why you should apply for a job you aren’t qualified for, in the eyes of a recruiter. Recruiters and hiring teams look for stand-out cover letters, unique answers to interview questions and interchangeable skills. These are all traits that are not specific to one field or dependent on your background. Meaning the hiring team thinks you can, and should, still apply for the job you aren’t technically qualified for on paper. 

But you might still be wondering, “No, do I qualify for this position?”

So here’s a bit about why you should still apply for those jobs that you aren’t qualified for from a confidence perspective!

1. You’re human and so is the person interviewing you! While there are some knowledge-based requirements to working in a specific field (let’s hope your orthopedic surgeon knows where the femur bone is), a large portion of most jobs, and therefore most interviews, is interpersonal skills. Your prospective company understands that no interviewee knows every single thing there is to know about or on the job before they start. They also know that skills necessary to perform the job are largely teachable, whereas a go-getter attitude, fitting into company culture, and general person-ability are harder to come by. But they’ll never get to see your fabulous personality if you don’t apply first, so go for it!

2. You might not get the specific job, but you might land the company. As it turns out, you might not fit the needs of the job you applied for (but you suspected that anyway, didn’t you? And I am proud of you for going for it!), but you might be a perfect fit for a different or future role at the company. If you make a lasting impression with your previously mentioned, great personality, the hiring manager will remember that and think of you as a perfect candidate when the opportunity presents itself.

3. Interviewing is a skill! Even if you don’t land the first job in a new field, taking interviews will help you gain more confidence sitting in front of (or rather Zoom-ing with) an interview panel and answering the dreaded, “Tell me about yourself.” It’ll also give you a chance to hear how this target field tends to frame questions and what their big focuses are. After each interview, write down a couple of questions that surprised you or that you want to work out a better answer so that next time it comes up, you nail it!

4. And lastly, and particularly if you identify as a woman, you should apply for jobs you don’t qualify for because the hiring process isn’t nearly as formal or official as you may suspect. Many people have heard and quoted that men apply for a job when they meet only 60% of the qualifications, but women apply only if they meet 100% of them. And while that may be true, this Harvard Business Review article dug a little bit deeper to find out why that was the case. They found that women were almost twice as likely to site simply “following the guidelines about who should apply,” as their main reason for not applying. The importance behind this statement is that, regardless of our gender, once we realize that others are applying for jobs they don’t qualify for either and that a “required” background list is just the preferred background, it gives us the freedom to put ourselves out there with more confidence. 

So know that even if you don’t land the first job you come by, you can and should still apply for that job you don’t “technically” qualify for! You’ve got this!

Why You Should Still Apply for Jobs That You Aren’t Qualified For (From A Confidence Perspective) is written by The Financial Gym Team for

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