6 Reasons To Apply For That Job You’re Not Really Qualified For

I talk to ambitious women every single day who want more for themselves.

They want more challenges, more responsibilities, for their work to make a bigger impact, more money in the bank.

They want the job, the title, the travel and the recognition.

And a lot of the time, they have been eyeing a job posting, an internal opportunity that’s come up or they’ve been approached by a company or head hunter.

Sometimes they say:

I’m not really qualified for this job, so I think I’m going to wait.

And sure – I get it.

I’ve also read job descriptions where the laundry list of qualifications and just made me think “OOOOOOOK, I’ll get you in a few years when I’ve developed super powers”.

But let’s remember that it’s a wish list.

Very few (if any!) applicants will actually have all those in place. And if they do, they should probably be shooting for something higher!

Also, you could very well be under-qualified, but more often than not, I come in with an outside perspective and see that they are both qualified and ready to take this next step.

They just need someone to see them, push them in the right direction and be there to work through the process with them.

And then they ask me:

Won’t they think I’m cocky if I apply for a job I’m not qualified for?

Maybe. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing in this career game!

But more importantly, there are many benefits to applying for that job.

Here’s my list of 6 Reasons To Apply For That Job You’re Not Really Qualified For:

1. It sends the signal that you’re ambitious.

Applying for that job says “Hello? I want bigger and better things in my career!”

There is no better way to signal your ambition than to actually go for that next step.

2. It puts you on the radar of recruiters, HR and hiring managers.

Your application will probably get filed and referenced for the future.

If you made a strong impression, they will also remember you personally, which could open up to other opportunities in their network.

3. It makes you think about your skills, achievements and deliverables.

Updating your resume, writing an application and preparing for an interview forces you to really think and verbalize what you’ve done that builds your authority, convincing both them and yourself that you are the right person for the job.

4. It gives you practice in interview situations.

There is nothing worse than having an interview for THE JOB YOU WANT and not feeling like you performed as well as you wished.

By practicing this from time to time, you will be better prepared for critical situations.

5. It’s a great opportunity to get feedback.

If you don’t end up getting the job, it’s absolutely acceptable to ask for some quick feedback on your process.

Before you do this, take a step back and make sure you don’t come across as needy or asking for too much.

These people are busy and the last thing they want is to schedule and hour with you to explain their decision to you. Make is easy for them to help you.

6. It could actually end up as a job offer!

Even if it might feel like a long shot, you still took the shot. Congrats!

And you might just end up getting that job.

Interested in more inspiration and tools to crack the career code? Sign up for my mailing list at annacosic.com/signup


Anna Cosic is a Leadership and Career Coach who works with busy, ambitious women to help them earn more, achieve more and have more.

She holds a Master of Science in Management from Stockholm University. Anna spent almost 10 years climbing the career ladder in Scandinavia’s biggest media company, Schibsted, eventually leading a company and managing 70 people before starting her coaching business.

She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, toddler son and two pugs, Igor and Doris.

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