A new joint study by the University of Missouri and Lehigh University has found that job-seekers with attitudes focused on 'learning' will have more success finding their dream jobs.
"We found that job seekers who have a 'learning goal orientation' or a natural disposition to learn from every situation in life, tend to be more successful in achieving their career goals," said Daniel Turban, professor of management at the University of Missouri's Trulaske College of Business.
"We also found that this disposition is not just influenced by genetics; it can be acquired," Turban said.
Turban and Serge da Motta Veiga, lead author of the study, focussed on college seniors who were in the job search process.
They surveyed approximately 120 individuals at different points during the job-seeking process.
People who had a strong learning goal orientation (LGO) reacted to failures by putting more intensity into the search process compared to job seekers who had a low LGO.
Additionally, when the process was going well, individuals with a high LGO maintained or slightly increased their intensity, while those who had a low LGO decreased their intensity.
"It is not that people with a high LGO have less stress but they deal with the stress better than others," Turban said.
With the right amount of stress, individuals with a high LGO increased their intensity, and as a result, were more successful in reaching their goals.
"Feeling a moderate amount of stress can be very motivating," the study said.
According to Turban and da Motta Veiga, it is best when job seekers spend time reflecting on how they are doing.
The more intentional job seekers are about learning from the process, the more successful they are likely to be in their job searches, said the study that appeared in the journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes.