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Being a candidate for a position way above the ones youíve had

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Old 15th March 2019, 12:34 AM   #1
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Being a candidate for a position way above the ones youíve had

Have you ever spent a significant ammount of time working on a candidacy for a job you know you won’t get? What was your motivation?

Last week I’ve been contacted by recruiters for two leadership positions where I’d make way more than I ever did and that were also quite higher in hierarchy than the ones I’ve previously had.

One of them was not really my area of expertise so I passed. The other one is my dream job + title — albeit in another city. It also included a path to join the executive board of the company I’ve had a first interview on the phone and then this week the recruiter asked me to breakdown five questions as they were meeting to discuss the candidates tomorrow. Oh boy. Those questions could practically form a dissertation on a subject that’s very dear to me... and were prob the most difficult questions I’ve had to answer in my career. I’ve spent the last two days writing them up while knowing I probabky won’t get this role.

I think my motivation to keep going was putting my thoughts together in an area that has always been cherished by me, rethink where my career is going and perhaps move it toward a position like this one, and also train for the day where I can actually get such position. I think I’m the end it might be a win-win situation.

Would be great to hear some thoughts on this
'We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are.' ― AnaÔs Nin

Last edited by edgygirl; 15th March 2019 at 12:37 AM..
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Old 15th March 2019, 2:41 AM   #2
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Go for it, edgygirl!

I own a business and have countless times signed contracts for jobs I didn't feel qualified for. But, I've always delivered superb work! I pray over fulfilling every deal as it progresses through stages and the challenge these tough ones bring is super sweet when my client gets the end result!
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Old 15th March 2019, 6:19 AM   #3
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You have to set the bar high. Not trying is worse than always staying in your safe zone.

You never know, you just may be the fit they were looking for.
a little messed up but weíre all alright
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Old 15th March 2019, 7:08 AM   #4
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I didn't meet about 50% of selection criteria for my current job. It was also more senior than any other jobs I had. I didn't apply until 5 minutes before the application deadline and then didn't even get an interview.

However, they didn't like any of the top 3 candidates on paper that they initially interviewed. So I got an interview and then undertook a grueling 9 hours interview/selection process. I was 100% convinced I will fail every step of the way. The main motivation for me was moving back to my "hometown" to be close to my family, career advancement was just a bonus

A word of caution though: be careful what you wish for. My current position is extremely stressful and I feel stretched to the limits of my ability. I am still debating if it's worth it and am often tempted to apply for more junior but more comfortable roles in the same town.
"Vision without execution is hallucination.Ē Thomas Edison
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Old 15th March 2019, 9:47 AM   #5
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Yes. 7 years ago I got a job as an exec. director and I was terrified. The interview process was the most intimidating one I'd ever been through (small room full of all men twice/thrice my age all interviewing me at the same time, had to prepare a speech, etc.). I was totally shocked when I was offered the position even though I did have the qualifications on paper....I was just not self-assured that I was actually ready for that title! I was so anxiety-ridden over starting that job that I had to go to my dr. for anxiety medication. I remember having a little breakdown in his office and him attempting to offer me fatherly advice lol.

Several factors led to me only staying for four months, but none of them were because I couldn't do the job . Turns out I could, but the organization itself was just too chaotic, in the midst of changes that the Board was all in disagreement about, my hands were completely tied, and I was offered a full time independent contractor work-at-home position with my sister/BIL's company and I took it.

And working for family is a whole 'nother topic entirely!!

As far as my motivation for applying to that job in the first place.....I wanted to relocate to the area in which I now live. so I was applying to many jobs in the field I was in at the time (non-profit fundraising).

You may be may actually be offered the job . Sometimes others see strengths in us we don't know we have, and don't know are needed for that particular job.
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Old 15th March 2019, 10:49 AM   #6
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I read from somewhere that women tend to have this tendency of doubting their ability (and pass the opportunity) in such a situation, which partly explains why men tend to have a better outcome in their career.
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Old 15th March 2019, 1:36 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by edgygirl View Post
Have you ever spent a significant ammount of time working on a candidacy for a job you know you wonít get?, I never did have that kind of 'crystal ball' to be able to be so sure of any future outcome. .

Seriously, though. There is always going to be a point where we have to take a sort of 'quantum leap' from where we are 'now' part of the process of keep moving forwards
and upwards to where we want to be or are meant to be, in life. (Careers, relationships, starting a family, etc. It all needs, at some point, that willingness to jump into the unknown.)

I'd offer that since you have been recruited - for not one but two positions - you must somehow have attained the qualifications (or otherwise those recruiters are doing a very poor job, right? .)

Wishing you the very best of luck -- go get 'em!
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Old 15th March 2019, 2:04 PM   #8
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Edgy, my dream job was at IBM. I applied thinking I was under qualified but it turn out I was overqualified. That was the easiest and most funest job Iíve ever had. And I made the big bucks to do what I loved
"Every form of refuge has its price"

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Old 15th March 2019, 5:16 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by edgygirl View Post
What was your motivation?
You've already touched on it - it's great - and free! - training.

Setting aside the off chance you might get the position, you learn the process, meet and network with the people involved and gain an understanding of what you need to do to reach your goal.

Assuming you don't let the rejection affect you, very little downside to being a participant...

Mr. Lucky
Happiness is not a goal; it is a byproduct -

Eleanor Roosevelt
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Old 15th March 2019, 6:52 PM   #10
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it's fun working with a group of really smart people, you create this synergy
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Old 15th March 2019, 11:36 PM   #11
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Thanks guys! Loved all the responses.

To be honest I do think I can do the job... itís just that itís super high up and it would be weird to skip prob one-two hierarchical positions. I wasnít expecting recruiters to be contacting me for something like that before I jumped at least to a position that makes sense in between.

Iíve been wanting to study business as well to be more prepared for a position like that when it does happen. It was good going through this as it reminded me not to give up doing that.
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Old 25th March 2019, 9:10 AM   #12
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Well.......... to answer your question directly... YES, I have. BUT...........

Look inside yourself. Do you think you can ACTUALLY produce what they are looking for? If that answer is yes... and you know you can learn quick (May be a lot of off work time doing research) then absolutely go for it. You don't grow as a person (or pay) unless you challenge yourself.

At my first job out of collage, I was an R&D chemist, but I told the owners that I could build a hand held chip programmer for production. I personally never did that before, and I only had a basic electronics background. (but it was a hobby) So, they gave me a budget, and offered a nice bonus on completion. At that end, I built them exactly what they wanted... I became a hero at the company... and I learned a lot about something I found interesting in a very short time. (amazing how fast you can learn when you are being paid to do it)

Now, I'm a consultant. At first, I thought "Why would anyone listen to me?" But on my first job, I put up the persona of power, and knowledge... and saved the customer well over $100k. (more than covering my fee)

So again... if you KNOW you can do it... then don't act weak, and go for it.
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