How to Get a Job Out of Your League

Miracles and Cinderella stories don’t only happen on the court. Basketball mirrors the unpredictability of the workplace. Have you ever let the intimidation of going up against a more experienced colleague prevent you from going after a promotion or a particular project? This March Madness, pick up the ball and shoot for that career, even if you think it’s out of your league. Here’s how to go for it, even when you feel like a 16th seed:

Point(guard) to your Personality:

Be confident. You’ve proven your worth at the company. You’ve built strong relationships. Be self-assured so both you and your boss can envision your success in the new role. Most companies value communication and teamwork, so it’s important to highlight these qualities.

The point guard is often called the “coach on the floor,” and act as leaders during the game. Channel your inner basketball star and showcase that you’re a master team player. Be a culture giver, a brand advocate and demonstrate your passion for the company’s mission. Management will notice that you believe in the company and the people in it. Be yourself, come prepared and let your personality shine through.

Swishes and Soft Skills:

If you feel under-qualified for the job, it’s essential to highlight your potential. Your boss will need to be confident in your ability to learn any skills you’re missing quickly.  Emphasize your drive and hunger to learn by highlighting any experience in your current role with learning a new software program or skill-set. Show you can solve problems by discussing any past situations that presented real challenges and required you to adapt.

Be proactive and take an online course in any skills you may be lacking. Then, you can discuss your due diligence with your boss to demonstrate your eagerness to engage and learn.

Accomplishments and Alley-Oops:

Even if you don’t have all the exact requirements for the new role, you still have accomplishments to be proud of. Whether you’ve won an award in your company, successfully managed the team or received a promotion, use your achievements to highlight your talents.

Just like alley-oops, awards and accomplishments will elevate your game.  Point them out in the interview to “wow” management and win as an underdog.

Persevere and Practice:

Even if you don’t oust the No. 1 seed, don’t get discouraged. Now you know what you need to work on for next year. When you hit the court for practice (or get to the office), ask your manager which skills you missed out on for the promotion or higher-level role.

Maybe you need to work on ball handling (hard skills like web design, writing or programming). Or maybe it’s offense. Continue to show that you want to be better and score 100% when others score 90%.

If a new career is in your future, let us help. View our open roles here.

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