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Avoid these pitfalls of job hunting WASHINGTON, D.C. -- 1) Taking extended time off from the hunt. There are always many reasons to not buckle down and start a job search. If you do take considerable time off before returning to the search, there are other costs associated with your hiatus. You'll lose many networking opportunities. Companies continue hiring throughout the year, and when you don't show up, you forfeit the opportunity to be considered.

2) Spending all your time scouring job boards and applying to positions online. Almost everyone starts a job search thinking, "I'll go online, find a job to apply to, and that will lead to an interview and ultimately a job offer." There's certainly value to seeing what's out there on major job boards. However, don't fool yourself into thinking this is all it takes to get a job. It's critical that you add other arrows to your job hunting quiver, such as networking, conducting informational interviews and more.

3) Only applying for long-shot dream jobs. Many people feel dissatisfied at work and may experience the "grass is greener on the other side of the fence" syndrome. While it's possible to transition from what you're doing to something more interesting, bear in mind that your highest probability of being hired is for jobs that require the specific experience that you already have. The more desperate you are to get a job, the more you should weight your job search toward the familiar rather than the fanciful alternative.

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