Lazy and Sloppy Do Not Make a Good Job Search

For the last six weeks I’ve used a walker to get around.  It’s much more of a pain than normal walking, but I like the walker a lot better than crutches.

Six weeks is a long time to have a walker. I have at least one more week of “no weight bearing,” which might mean I’ll be done with this walker for in a week or two.  That will be an amazing day.

Thursday night, last week, I goofed up. I was tired, and tired of the walker, and got a bit lazy.  Sloppy. The front of my walker bumped into four things, and the back of my walker snagged the bathroom mat and folded it up. Each of these could have resulted in me getting off-balance and falling.

That is not a fun prospect. I want to be done with this slow-down period of my life, not hurt myself more.

Why did this happen Thursday night?  Because I was sloppy.  I went through the motions, but was lazy enough to make mistakes… mistakes that could have had dire consequences.

Not as dire as breaking your wrist, or snapping the screws that a surgeon put in your ankle, I see consequences that are dire for job seekers.


Because sometimes, in your job search, you just go through the motions.  You don’t have your heart in it, and you make mistakes that seem to be no big deal.

Mistakes in your communication, as you talk about your previous boss (the jerk!).  Or how you don’t brand yourself the way you should, or how you spend too much time doing things you know you shouldn’t (like applying to jobs on job boards… it’s like the guilty pleasure for job seekers).

I’m not talking about doing everything wrong, I’m talking about not concentrating enough and making small mistakes.

Above, I wrote “mistakes that could have dire consequences.”

The size of your mistake isn’t always equal to the size of the consequence.

I know the job search is hard.  Monotonous (like using a walker).  Tedious. Boring.  Not what you excel at.

But I want you to think about the time you devote to your job search activities: don’t be lazy during that time!  If it’s only for the next 30 minutes, be at the top of your game for that 30 minutes!

When I get on stage to speak, my self talk includes “leave it all on the field!”  For a one hour presentation, I might have a full day of travel, then driving to the venue, then a full day of travel to get home (many times, after 11pm).  It’s a LOT of time put into the one hour. But if I’m not on my game when I’m on the stage, it’s all for naught. No amount of planning for the trip, hotel, plane, car rental, food, etc. is worth it if I get lazy and sloppy on stage.  It’s all about that one hour.

That’s the way it should be for you. Whether it’s that critical 2 line email that takes you a half hour to get just right, or the phone call that turns out to be 40 seconds long, make sure you are on your game, and leave it all on the field.  Now is not the time to be sloppy.