4 Worst Pieces of Career Advice to Avoid

There’s a lot of work advice out there, and some of it is pretty bad. When it comes to navigating your career, you have to be careful about who you take career advice from. A wrong move could cost you a job. Here are some career tips the experts told us you’d be better off avoiding.

1. A flashy resume will help you stand out

Man holding resume

Man with resume | iStock.com

A flashy resume could cause your application to get passed over. While a little creativity is welcome, going overboard is a problem, said Saad Rizvi, founder of career site Mentat. “In many cases, the first round interview screen is conducted by an ATS or Application Tracking System (in simple terms, a robot!). These programs are optimized for gathering information from a very basic design, and fancy graphs or pictures are not picked up or taken into consideration while filtering out resumes, so you might be passed over despite being a good fit for the role,” Rizvi told The Cheat Sheet.

2. Apply for as many jobs as you can at one company


Resume | iStock.com

No matter how tempting, resist the urge to blast your application to everyone at the same company. Also resist the urge to apply for multiple jobs at the same company. Marissa Peretz, founder of Silicon Beach Talent, said doing a resume blast reeks of desperation. “[Don’t] cast too wide a net. Emailing everyone whose email address you can find at a specific company or applying to many open jobs at one company can convey an air of desperation. People sometimes fall in love with a specific company, and that’s understandable, but the way to increase your chances is to think about these opportunities strategically. I suggest only applying to roles you are actually a fit for, and try to network with people at a company you’re interested in or speak with recruiters who can help present you directly,” said Peretz.

3. Stay at a new job for at least one year

Overworked man in his cubicle

Overworked man | iStock.com

Job hopping looks bad on your resume, but if you’re miserable at a new job, don’t feel obligated to finish out the year. This is especially true if your job is making you sick. Debbie Chew, head of operations at Codementor, told The Cheat Sheet it’s best to leave and search for another opportunity. “If you’re downright unhappy with your job and you’re unable to cope, then it’s not worth it to pretend to be happy or stay. Instead of wasting your time at a job not suitable for you, you can be doing other things like learning a new skill or finding a different job,” said Chew.

4. Go on interviews for jobs you aren’t interested in just for the practice

candidate in a job interview, job advice

Hiring manager | iStock.com

Practice on your own time. Lori Bumgarner, career specialist and owner of passion and career coaching service paNASH, said hiring managers have a sixth sense and will know immediately what you’re doing. Your best bet is to only interview for jobs you would actually consider taking. “Avoid interviewing for a job you don’t intend to take if offered just for interview practice. Recruiters can often sense when a candidate is doing this, and recruiters run in the same circles (especially within the same industry) and they talk to each other. Word will get around if a candidate is known for doing this, which could hurt their chances of getting an interview or an offer for a job they actually want … If you want to improve your interview skills, do some mock interviews with friends or family who are in hiring positions at their jobs, or with a career coach,” Bumgarner said.

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