Success in your career – just like in all aspects of your life – is about growth. The best employers know and acknowledge this as they evaluate job candidates. They expect people who apply for their open jobs to have questions and a need to keep learning, to seek out mentors and advisors, and even to make some mistakes as they get acclimated.

So, if you’re considering applying for a position for which you don’t meet every qualification listed in the job posting, the answer is a resounding “yes” – as long as the company culture is right for you, you have the knowledge it takes to handle the job’s basic responsibilities, and you’re willing to embrace and benefit from a growth mindset.

  • Remember, many skills can be learned on the job. Treat job ads like a set of guidelines regarding what a position involves, not a carved-in-stone list of requirements that every candidate must meet in order to be considered. Of course, it’s important to have some of the requisite skills up front. But don’t let a few exceptions turn you away from what may be an awesome career opportunity.

How to Decide Whether to Apply

A new job should challenge you and support your growth mindset, but not to the extent that so many requirements are outside your comfort zone that you have to struggle constantly to meet them. Reflect on your honest response to these questions as you decide whether or not to throw your hat in the ring:

  • Do I really want this job? Save yourself time by applying only to roles that are attractive to you. In addition to salary and benefits, be sure they align with your interests, passions, goals and lifestyle. If you can honestly answer “yes” to all of the above, then go for it.
  • How many of the requirements do I meet as of today? Know the must-haves from the nice-to-haves. If you possess most of the required skills but fall short of some of the preferred qualifications, it’s most likely worthwhile to apply. Think about your strongest transferable skills and how they help strengthen your position.
  • Will this position be the right fit for me? Beyond skills and requirements, the right cultural fit is essential, both to you and to your potential employer. This means your beliefs, morals, mission and vision are in sync with those of the company. If you sense a misfit, then it’s probably best to move on to the next potential opportunity.

A professional career counselor from PrideStaff Northern Kentucky can be your greatest asset in every aspect of your job search – from networking and finding great opportunities to making the right decision about applying, and throughout the entire hiring process. The right job is closer than you think, and our best-in-class approach has helped thousand of people just like you to find it. Reach out to us today for more information.

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