There’s no reason we shouldn’t be reaching for the stars when it comes to our career goals, but sometimes we skip good opportunities in order to avoid disappointment. But what if you did get that dream job?
In addition to negotiating a higher salary, one thing we shouldn’t be afraid to go for is a job we might feel slightly underqualified for.
A recent study showed that women tend not to apply for jobs unless they feel they fit 100 per cent of the “required” qualifications. But boys are happy to apply if they fit just 60 per cent of the job description. They end up getting ahead faster and earning more money while they’re at it, widening the gender pay gap.
Taking a chance on a job application works for guys, so why shouldn’t we join them and just go for it? You might just get called in for that interview…
Refinery29 has come up with 6 ways to land that job you don’t feel entirely qualified for:
1. Write a killer covering letter
This is the first impression your potential boss will get of you, so make it a good one! Make it specific to the company, proof read (at least twice!), and make your best case for why you deserve the job.
2. Research the company
One way you can make up for your lack of experience is by knowing the company inside and out. Impress your interviewer with your knowledge about its competitors, the culture, and recent big projects.
3. Learn the lingo
Of course you should listen and look engaged during your interview, but also pay special attention to any specific terms your interviewer uses when it comes to talking about topics that are industry-specific. For example, if your interviewer calls slideshows “decks,” don’t call them “PowerPoints.” The key here is to sound more experienced than you might actually be.
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4. Ask intelligent questions
Asking smart questions in an interview shows what you’re made of, and helps your interviewer picture you in the position you’re applying for. For example, ask about ways you could grow in the position. It’ll make your interviewer think about where you’re going, not where you’re coming from.
5. Reframe your answers
Stuck on a question? Don’t panic! Instead, just reframe your answers to focus on some other relevant experience in your life.
So if you haven’t had management experience, but your interviewer wants to know how you would manage a team of interns, think of a time when you managed a project at uni, or mention tactics you learned from a previous boss you liked.
6. Be your (awesome) self
Interviewers aren’t just after the person with the longest CV, they’re looking for compatible personalities. They’ve got to figure out if they really want to spend 40-plus hours a week with you. Be yourself of course, but since you’re asking your potential boss to take a chance on you, be extra polite and lovely. It goes a long way in balancing a short CV.