Written By: Marc Belaiche, CA
Many times when I ask a jobseeker what kind of position they’re looking for, the response is “I’ll take anything”.
As a jobseeker, there are challenges with this approach, and this article looks at the pros and cons to consider when seeking a new position.
Showcase your talent
Demonstrating to an organization the work you are capable of once you start may help you to work your way to a position that more closely suits your background/skill level. You never know what type of position might become available after you join an organization.
Letting a recruiter know that you’re flexible in what you can do and that you’re willing to try different responsibilities could open doors for you. It may also be an opportunity to learn different skills and gain additional experience.
A new career path
If your previous positions weren’t what you really wanted or the work wasn’t personally satisfying, this could be an opportunity to head in a new direction with your career.
You might get a chance
An organization may be willing to give you a chance even if you don’t have all the required skills. If they’ve been trying to fill the position for a while without success, doors may open for you. Sometimes timing is everything.
Requiring the income for personal or family reasons is understandable, although generally it’s not something you should reveal to an organization during interviews.
This attitude demonstrates a motivation to work, which is appealing to organizations.
You’ve been out of work for a long time
In situations where you’ve been out of work for an extended period, you might feel the pressure to accept any position, so that your resume doesn’t become too choppy.
More difficult for recruiters
Recruiters, especially within recruiting firms/staffing agencies, prefer to have a clear understanding of what a jobseeker is looking for. It’s more difficult to place a candidate and as a result they may be less helpful to you. Also, being vague and willing to settle for anything is often not as lucrative financially.
Specializing pays more
If you have a clear direction on what you’re looking for, a position with a specialty focus typically pays more than a more general position.
An organization may have the impression that you’re not focused on your career or that you don’t have a game plan. The inference that you would not be as focused on your day-to-day work responsibilities might work against you.
Will you really take anything?
In my experience, there is always a line that is drawn regarding what a candidate will accept as a position. Be aware of what your bottom is in terms of compensation, responsibilities, and any other pertinent details regarding the opportunity.
You may need to explain later
In the future, you may need to explain to another organization why you took a position outside of your career path. You’ll need a good explanation. Diverting off your path temporarily may make it more difficult in the future to get back to the type of position you really want.
Lack of interest in job being offered
It’s best not to say you’re willing to do anything, be offered a position, and then decline it because it wasn’t what you were looking for. This is wasting everyone’s time, including yours, and you will lose credibility with recruiters.
Compensation may be less
Accepting any job may result in lower compensation if the salary range of the position is below your targeted salary. Recruiters may sense that you’re more desperate, and this could be a disadvantage when you’re negotiating compensation.
Although there are advantages to saying that you’d be willing to take any position, it is generally not recommended – the cons noted above outweigh the pros in most situations. Determine exactly what you’re qualified for and what you want to do, and be clear about it in interviews. Have a bottom as to what you would and wouldn’t be willing to do. In the long run, it will work better for you and others involved in your hiring.
Marc Belaiche is a 1990 CA and is President of www.TorontoJobs.ca, an Internet recruitment business and recruiting firm located in the Greater Toronto Area in Canada. Marc has been in the recruitment industry since 1995. TorontoJobs.ca allows companies to post their positions online, search a resume database to find candidates, provides outplacement services and full temporary and permanent recruitment services. TorontoJobs.ca also allows candidates to search and apply to positions directly online and get career, interviewing and resume tips all at no charge. Marc is also President of TorontoEntrepreneurs.ca, an organization geared towards business owners (see www.TorontoEntrepreneurs.ca). You can reach Marc at firstname.lastname@example.org and check out www.TorontoJobs.ca.