How Can “Overqualified†Candidate Get Noticed?


Sheryl writes:
I was reading your article about
Fighting the
Overqualified Label: 10 Tactics for a Successful Job Search
. I wanted to ask a
question that pertains to my situation. I was a director at a major healthcare
organization until 2010 when I was outplaced due to an organizational
downsizing. At the beginning of 2011 my dad took very ill so I went to
care for him (leaving the state) until his passing in late summer. I began
looking for a position within my area of expertise. My challenge is that I
made in the upper $80s as a salary looking to stay within the area where
I live and feel that whatever I apply for looks like they cannot afford me or I
am overqualified. My question is how can I get noticed?


The Career Doctor responds:
I think you may face multiple challenges. You are limiting yourself to a
specific and limited geographic area you were downsized and you have been
out of work. What kind of jobs and in what industries are you looking? Was healthcare a passion — or was the job of directing it your passion?
The first thing you need to do is deal with the gap. Have you been doing any
kind of consulting or volunteering? Taken any classes? Because we are talking
two years here you want to show that you have been still active at some level.
If you have not done any of these things now is the time to do so.
The second thing is to evaluate the types of jobs companies and industries
that interest you. Since you are looking at a specific geographic area this
should be an easy task. While doing so you should be reconnecting and building
your network. At this level your network is crucial to getting good job leads.
I would also suggest talking with at least one executive recruiter who
specializes in your geographic area.
The third thing is to work on your job-search techniques. Your resume will
need work and because you are open to mid-level positions as well as senior
positions you should work on your interviewing skills as well. You should
appear open to opportunities but not desperate.