Cupid's Pulse Article: Looking for Love Is Like a Job SearchCupid's Pulse Article: Looking for Love Is Like a Job Search

By Lisa Becker

We all know that finding love can be a lot of work. No disrespect to the Peace Corp, but it truly may be the toughest job you’ll ever have. So if you’re serious about wanting to find a great relationship, you should start treating it like a job search. Consider these seven tips below:

1. Network, Network, Network: Just as people find jobs through networking, a great way to find a good personal match is through friends and friends of friends. After all, who is better to help promote your great qualities, positively position your odd quirks, and play down your annoying habits?

Because they know you and your desires, your loved ones will likely beat out most online dating algorithms in making good matches. If you do turn to online dating, consider a service like Clique, an invitation-only site that links you up with people through common connections.

2. Create a Digital Resume: If online dating is for you, treat your profile like a digital resume. Use this opportunity to tell people who you really are and what makes you special. Don’t talk about your ex. That’s tantamount to saying you got fired from your last job. Just let your personality, accomplishments, and assets shine through.

Include specifics that people can connect with — interests, hobbies, likes, and dislikes — but be honest. If all goes well and you make a connection, you’ll need to provide proof of all of your claims. Be sure to proofread! Not only do you likely want to come across as literate and educated but as someone who takes pride in themselves.

Related Link: Desiree Hartstock Says Confidence is the Key to Finding Mr. Right 

3. Be Selective: You wouldn’t apply for every job advertised on, would you? And you wouldn’t hire someone you know is wrong for the job. Then why would you do that in dating? Don’t ask out every prospective person or online match, and don’t accept an invitation from all either.

Let’s face it: Dating isn’t cheap. It takes time, money, and, likely your most valuable and scarce resource, energy. So take advantage of the “try before you buy” environment of online dating. You don’t have to meet for a drink, grab a coffee, or sit through a long dinner only to discover there’s no physical attraction or you have nothing in common, conversation is lacking.

4. Do Your Research: Online dating will allow you to narrow your focus if you do your homework. You can join a general dating service and design your dating search to make matches based on criteria important to you from interests and values to age and previous history. You can also select an online dating service that focuses exclusively on a niche market based on religion or education. Find the one that’s right for you.

Once online, really read profiles and send messages that are tailored to them. The generic “I like your profile and feel like we have a lot in common” email will likely find its way into the trash. Find one or two things in the person’s profile that you connect with and comment on them.

Related Link: Five Tips for Falling in Love in 2014

5. Job Interview: Treat your first date like a job interview. While you likely won’t be asked what your biggest strengths and weaknesses are or where you see yourself in five years, you will need to put your best foot forward. Good interviews are about seeing if the job and the candidate are a good match.

The job candidate who comes to the interview only asking about vacation days and salary isn’t going to get the job. Ask questions to learn about your date and determine if you have mutual interests. Even if you know this isn’t going to be a love match, use it as an opportunity to practice your dating skills. You’ll improve for the next time around. You also never know who this person might introduce you to (see Network, Network, Network above).

6. Dress for Success: I’m not suggesting you wear a suit and tie or skirt and blazer on a first date. What I am saying is dress appropriately for the occasion. Pick something that puts you in the best light, is reflective of your personality, and fits the date. You’ll feel better and more confident, which will shine through.

Related Link: 4 Best Practices for Talking to Your Date

7. Decline with Grace: In Click: An Online Love Story, the main character Renee gets an email from someone halfway across the world looking to meet someone willing to move for him. After sending a polite and diplomatic “thanks but no thanks” email message, she proclaims to her friend, “It’s so much easier to reject someone over that Internet than in real life. Score one for online dating!” While rejection is easier for both parties when done online, it’s important to remember that people still have feelings.

Lisa Becker had endured her share of hilarious and heinous cyber dates, many of which inspired Click: An Online Love Story and Double Click. The books, about a young woman’s search for love online in Los Angeles, have been called “a fast read that will keep you entertained,” “a fun, quick read for fans of Sex and the City,” and “hard to put down.”  Her third novel, Right Click, is due out Spring 2014.