(Original post from Career Contessa ):
“You wouldn’t believe how many times I’ve spoken to people who started a new job only to find it was the opposite of what they wanted or expected.”
Apparently, there’s a right way to read a job posting but also a wrong way—and most of us do it wrong. Who knew? Jane, actually. That’s why we asked her to write us an exclusive guide on reading between the lines of every job listing out there. You can download it for free below, but we also pulled a few tips from inside to help get you started:
1. don’t let excitement get in the way
Don’t do that. That’s what leads someone to start a job only to find out that it’s 80% administrative work when they thought it was going to be 100% creative. Read the whole posting slowly and critically. It may feel painfully slow, but maybe it should be.
2. Look for Clues in the Company’s Values
Company descriptions don’t always explicitly reference “Our core values…,” but when they do spell them out, take extra notice. Also, if a description makes reference to certain people, such as the CEO, you’ll want to research them thoroughly before sending in your cover letter.
3. Pay Attention to Keywords and Repeat Phrases
Your application materials should parallel the language used in the role description. When it makes sense, use the same words and phrases—but don’t overdo it! The hiring manager shouldn’t think to herself, “Hmm, where have I heard that before?” Instead, your objective is to frame your work so that she thinks, “Wow, it’s a little uncanny just how perfect of a fit this woman is!”
…And There’s a Ton More
Download Jane’s resource for real examples of job listings from real companies (Bumble, Pluralsight…), major insider knowledge, and even more tricks. It’s a goldmine.