For someone going for their dream job, exaggerating certain aspects of their history to match the job’s selection criteria is not that unusual. But completely inventing a skill or qualification they don’t possess (and it happens surprisingly often) is another thing entirely!
It’s always surprising that people do this…surely they know at one point or another, it’s going to become a problem for them.
Say a candidate is going for a journalist position that also requires them to be handy with Photoshop and other photo editing tools. They figure they’re such a perfect match for the other six position criteria that it’s okay to gloss over the fact that they’ve never retouched a photo in their life…and hey they can always learn how to on the job.
They do in fact get the job and not long in, when they’re swamped with five different article deadlines and their editor is grilling them over their fact checking processes, another request comes in for an urgent photo touch-up. No time to take a quick lesson, or to ask for someone’s help – what do they do now?!
It’s always far better to be completely honest. Position criteria is there for a reason and if someone doesn’t meet one of them, the truth is they’re probably not the right person for the job and conversely this isn’t the right position for them.
If someone is absolutely convinced that this is the job they’ve been waiting for their entire life then it’s always worth submitting an application and following-up with a phone call explaining why they think their strengths in other areas make up for their lack in one.
If they get to the interview stage, they should impress upon the person interviewing them, their willingness to learn this skill (preferably in their own time) and to make it a priority while they’re still new to the job. This protects them later on when they might find themselves struggling with this one aspect of the job, and they’re well within their rights to remind the boss that they did warn them when they start to lose patience with them. Full disclosure at all times!
People going for jobs should have enough faith in themselves and the skills and qualities they do genuinely possess and not waste time going after jobs that they know deep down aren’t the right fit – they’re only missing out on the ones that are!
Written and Posted by Matt Tutty – Resumes To You