Why Job Search Is Like Winning American Idol

Why Job Search Is Like Winning American Idol

Even if you avoid reality television shows like the plague, you’ve heard of American Idol. Twelve seasons and many judges later, the popular singing competition continues to create superstars, deliver hits, and inspire shows like The Voice and The X Factor. Competing for a record contract is a lot like job search - it’s all about your delivery.

The Better The Job, The Harder The Audition

The interview process can be arduous. There are cover letters, resumes, phone screens, on-site interviews, and other hoops to jump through. It's not like you're auditioning for American Idol, so why is there a line around the corner just for an interview? Keep in mind that the more competitive the job, the harder your interview (read: audition). It’s the law of supply and demand, and there will always be more interest than available headcount. Particularly if a company is well known, compensation generous and growth opportunities ample, you can expect process and will need patience. If you know you’re going up against the best then prepare more and be better. You have the time so use it.

Practice, Practice, Practice

In life, and with everything, you get out what you put in. This means that practicing and honing your craft is one of the best investments of time you can make. Malcolm Gladwell believes that 10,000 hours is required to master your field. Practice your introduction, know answers to obvious interview questions and prepare a few topics of conversation to engage you interviewer. The clock is ticking…

Realize Employers Want Workers First, Friends Second

Simon Cowell and the American Idol judges may appear like a cruel bunch. They're not afraid to cringe at an off note, criticize song choice, or grill hopefuls on what they want for their singing career. From the outside looking in, it may appear to be bullying but feedback is part of the job search. After all, employers are not in the business of making friends. They want to find the best person for the job and that requires some digging. It’s your job to answer the tough questions and prove you have the talent to get the job done. Your resume was your calling card, and now it’s up to you to deliver. Forget the opinions of others and show up committed to singing your song and sharing your story.

Accept Criticism, But A Little Pride Is Okay

At the job interview, take everything in stride. When things don’t go according to plan, acknowledge your areas of improvement and determine ways you can develop. All criticism can be constructive and serve as a means to an end. That end is about becoming a more qualified candidate. Having said that, it's sometimes necessary to stand your ground. I read once that it’s a sign of a wise man to entertain an idea without accepting it. Always listen and be respectful of the opinions of others, but never compromise your own. If you feel differently, speak up! No one wants to listen to a copycat or hire 'yes' men and women.

Take A Chance

Fame and fortune are never without risk, and big chances always come with a lot of anxiety. You must be willing to face rejection if you want to get your foot in the door. We can only get out of the future what we put into the present, and if you're sitting at home eating junk food and watching American Idol (Sorry, I had to), then opportunity is passing you by.

Your Next Step

Google is like the all seeing and all-knowing great and powerful Wizard of Oz. Hard to detect and impossible to comprehend, there's a lot that happens behind the scenes. There's algorithms, bots and crawlers (oh my), but there's also a human element. At a time when so many are unemployed and looking for work, Google can connect you to the people, insights and resources to get you hired. Join us as we explore Google Search, Alerts, G+ and a host of other services that can help you land your dream job. In my webinar, "Googling for Jobs - How You Can Use Google To Find Your Next Job," I'll show you how you can use Google to find your next place of employment. WATCH WEBINAR NOW ►Photo Credit: Shutterstock