3 Signs You're More Qualified for Your Dream Job Than You Think

There’s a rush of emotions you feel when you find the perfect job listing. Then there’s another whole rush when you see that you’re not exactly qualified for the role. In these cases, it’s only natural to close the window and just assume you’ll never get it.

But that’s the wrong move. While some requirements are necessary, others aren’t so much—especially if you have a few other things going for you.

“Like what?” you may ask…

1. You Have Extensive Experience in the Company’s Industry, Even if You Don’t Have it in That Role

Before I started writing for a living, I never thought I’d be able to find a company willing to give me a shot. I’d never done anything more than an occasional freelance project for a friend, and I wasn’t sure how to get my foot in the door. That was until I learned about transferable and additive skills—the skills that make up for you being slightly under-qualified.

It turned out that my previous jobs actually made me a good fit for certain roles, even if it didn’t look that way at first. For example, even though I didn’t have a journalism degree, I landed this Muse gig because I did have experience as a recruiter, as well as an account manager in the recruitment space.

If you’re in this boat, you can highlight your own skills in your application by using this formula.

2. Your “Fun” Side Projects Are Relevant to the Job

Speaking of transferable skills, take another look at the listing you’re considering applying for. You might not have “professional” experience handling the responsibilities it calls for, but if something you do in your free time is relevant, you’re probably more equipped to do the job than you realize.

I’ve lost track of how many conversations I’ve had with people who have said, “I do this thing when I’m not at work that will never make me any money, but it sure is fun!”

Often times, it’s either a blog or a project that those people never think will see the light of day. But in a lot of those cases, those “fun” projects have actually ended up landing my friends jobs.

Plus, based on conversations I’ve had with recruiters in the past, these side projects often prove to be good indicators of someone’s potential success in a role. So they’re usually all about them when they see them on an application. (On that note, here’s how to include those on your resume.)