Posts Tagged ‘professional resume writer’
Too many candidates mistakenly believe that being called in for an interview is being guaranteed a position — nothing could be further from the truth!
You might be the last person on a short list of candidates. Your skills, knowledge, and abilities are good, but perhaps not a perfect match for the company. However, the hiring manager is interested enough to meet with you and allow you to sell yourself to the company.
How do you do that? Preparation – preparation – preparation.
- Know how to dress. If you’re not familiar with the company culture, visit its website or offices during work hours to see how staff dress. No matter how casual they may be, the key is for you to look professional—you’re not on staff yet.
- Do extensive research about the company. Know what they’re about. Nothing’s worse for a hiring manager than to interview someone who hasn’t a clue what their company offers.
- Compose a list of questions about the company that indicates your interest in its products and services, the position itself, and the company and department culture. No more than 3 or 4 questions. Any more than that and your prospective employer might think you’re going to be “high maintenance” always coming to them with questions.
- Prepare a list of answers to the most frequently asked interview questions. For example: Where do you see yourself five years from now?
- Practice, practice, practice. Make certain your voice and body language don’t give away your anxiety.
- Calculate travel time. Know how long it will take to get to your interview so you arrive on time.
A friend of mine who was looking to change careers asked me last week for some ideas of tailoring his resume to expedite his search. Here’s what I told him, and this advice is for you too. Here are two examples but there are many; always keep in mind whether you are in sales or management this applies; “sales are sales”; if you know how to sell the product is incidental. Same is true of management. A personal friend of mine worked in management in six or seven different companies, all different products. If you understand people, “management is management”, only the product changes. If you are a machinist and run a lathe; you can be easily trained to run a mill or drill-press.
If you are seeking a job in a new area, you should first identify and describe any previous work experience in the best light possible while identifying the most relevant duties performed. Job descriptions are no longer seen as helpful ways for employers to evaluate potential employers, and many of them are looking for accomplishment-focused phrases and results-oriented statements. So tailor your resumes toward this.
Using Action Verbs in Resumes
Use action verbs. These are words that are used specifically in resumes to accurately and succinctly indicate what a job applicant accomplished in their last position. These phrases begin with an action word such as designed, sold or instructed and leave out unnecessary words such as the, a and also. The phrases sound crisp and leave the distinct impression that you have been active.
The best action verbs depend on the specific job duties you performed, but some example action verbs could include: billed, wrote, supervised, managed, analyzed, directed, trained, planned, taught, developed, maintained, organized, initiated or produced. When you write your resume you should pick one verb for each line and then elaborate.
Accomplishments to Mention on a Resume
If you haven’t had to look for a job for several years – you may have a difficult time figuring out which of their past accomplishments are best to focus on when choosing the action words for their resumes.
These questions may help when trying to determine which verbs are best to describe the results of each pertinent job duty:
- Did I improve efficiency – how?
- How did I perform the job better than expected?
- Did I implement anything new that benefited the organization?
- Did I receive any awards or special recognition as a result of past performance?
Tips When Changing Careers
Researching the new field or profiling the specific job the applicant is looking for is the most important aspect of changing careers. The more knowledge you have about the company the better your chance to market your existing skills. By using the Internet, research has never been easier. Employers are impressed by applicants who have taken the time to find out about their businesses.
Are you sending out dozens of resumes each week but getting no response? Do you feel discouraged by a tough job market and your competition?
In your efforts to get noticed, you should keep one thing in mind: Put yourself in the hiring manager’s place. Ask yourself, “What would the employer think of my resume in the initial few seconds she takes to read it?” Even if you’re exactly right for the job, you may never be asked to interview unless you make the proper first impression with a well-written resume and cover letter. Use these tips to guide you:
- Manage the content and format effectively. The content and format of your resume are very important. A resume that employs a tiny font and has too much information will be quickly passed over by a hiring manager in favor of a clean, easy-to-read, well-spaced document. Use bullet points and even-spaced margins. Don’t make the mistake of including every single thing you did at a previous job. Instead, list key accomplishments and major, progressive responsibilities that highlight your skills. You can then expand on your previous responsibilities in a cover letter and during the first interview.
- Make the content of your resume reflect transferable skills related to the position for which you’re applying. Hiring managers often glance at a resume looking for key phrases and buzz words that they want in their ideal next employee. Take the time to tailor your resume specifically to a job description. Including key phrases from the description may get you past the employers’ web-based application filter as well as generate enough interest for a first interview.
- Keep your resume free of spelling and grammatical errors. You want to convey that you are professional and detail-oriented, can write well, and take your work seriously. One glance at a resume with spelling and grammatical errors might cause an employer to think you are sloppy, make mistakes, and are wasting his or her time. Take the time to proofread your resume. (Don’t depend on the computer spell checker) Then have someone you trust review it for you.
- Your cover letter should always express your interest in the specific job. Does the position give you an opportunity to expand your skill set? Is the company dynamic and progressive? Clearly convey your strong interest in the company and position, and then explain why you’re the ideal candidate. This shows you have done your homework on the company and truly want to work there.
Putting the employer first by having a tailored cover letter and well-written resume will ensure you have submitted the best possible representation of yourself, bringing you a step closer to getting that interview and job offer.