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Why I didn’t apply to every job in Dubai

“I’ve applied everywhere, I seriously just want a job, I don’t care about anything else”, cried Rafa. I laughed at my friend’s desperation, but cringed at the idea of adopting the same approach.

It wasn’t like Rafa was the only one though, every other person I knew in my batch was doing just the same. Back then, it seemed to have become the norm. “APPLY EVERYWHERE!” they said, but I had my own set of priorities and this was definitely not one of them.

For sure, Dubai can be an overwhelming place, and desperation can take its toll soon enough. From visa expiration deadlines to general expenses, it can be quite taxing. Therefore, I knew I had to start my job search very early on.

Besides, it’s easier to land yourself an internship rather than a full time job here in Dubai. This is mainly because employers’ face heavy financial burden when hiring permanent employees, which usually involves visa sponsorships, blood tests, health insurance and generally higher salary expectations in comparison to hiring interns.

When I started looking for jobs, I didn’t know much except the fact that I wasn’t going to apply to every single position I came across and here’s why:

It wasn’t worth my time

It takes a lot of time and effort to fill out an application properly, therefore it makes sense to take a minute or two to first decide whether it’s even worth your time or not. I’d rather invest my time for a position/company that I really want, improving my job application ROI.

ain't nobody got time for that

For example, it took me a month to fill out my application for Unilever, yes, that’s a ton of time, but at least I knew it’s for something I really wanted.

I knew what I wanted

If you can’t even remember where you applied, chances are you don’t even care about all those applications/employers/companies etc. I aspired to get into a multinational, that was my goal and therefore I stuck to it. I never settled for something else. Define your goal and stick to it (btw this is more likely to impress the employer too).

Wondering how to pick and stick to a career goal? Here’s a great resource to get started.

But what if you’re not sure of what you really want?

No issues, what’s more important is to take that first step. Find some time to research and shortlist career options that you may be interested in and then look for jobs belonging to those areas. It’s only once you start working, you’ll really know if a certain career is meant for you or not.

what job do i want

This brilliant piece of writing on Forbes, also tries to address this problem, and it could be the answer to all your confusion.

It was way easier to follow up

Following up on applications after you click “submit” is one of the most important steps of the entire job process and so with only a few applications on my hand, I could focus all my energy and effort trying to follow up with those and connect with people who could be reviewing them.