Job hunting is not an easy process and it’s not the most exciting either. The thought of hundreds of potential candidates competing against you can be mind boggling, depressing, and may build levels of insecurity. Fear not! There are things you can proactively do to increase your chances at getting called for an interview. Let’s begin!
Content! Content! Content! Nothing looks worse on paper than irrelevant information. Eliminate the jobs or descriptive text that is insignificant to the job you are applying for. For example, if you are applying for an account manager position at a financial institution, your role as dish washer at your local restaurant you worked for five years should remain off of your resume. However, if specific leadership or communication skills were attained or enriched through unrelated job positions, feel free to list them under a section of your resume highlighting your skills/core competences.
Be fluid. Your resume should be reader friendly. Potential employers are looking for keywords and accomplishments to determine if you are the right fit and the easier they are to find, the better.
Show off your achievements. No one likes a show off but on your resume, it’s greatly accepted. Instead of listing mere job duties, list what you have accomplished at your current and past jobs. Drop numbers. How much revenue did your project/campaign/new account generate? How many individuals did you successfully train to start a new position? List promotions, awards earned, etc. Employers would be impressed and convinced that you can do the same work for their company.
Leader vs. Player. Your leadership skills play a vital role on your resume as well as in the interviewing room; but let’s not forget that being a team player is equally important. There is always that one person in a department that feels they know it all and refuses to hear the opinion of others. Don’t be that person on paper (or in person for that matter). Embed in your job descriptive text your abilities as both team leader and team player.
Be willing to learn. Humility is crucial when starting a new position! A job candidate that is excited to learn new things and to share their knowledge is considered an asset. Express that on your resume and during your interview. Be transparent and show your humble side.
Have fun. A “stick in the mud” is boring and may not survive in some social settings. Learn the culture of the company you are applying to. Check out their social media accounts and you will gather a great deal of information to know if the company is the right fit for you. List hobbies and personal interests on your resume (if applicable) or in your cover letter. Employers want to be assured that you can get along with other employees. Prove them right!
Protect your online presence. Your resume may be top-notch but your Spring Break in Miami photos posted on your Facebook and Twitter accounts say otherwise. Employers are now using social media accounts as reference tools to determine whether or not to hire you. Brandyourself.com is a company (as seen on the hit TV show Shark Tank) that allows you to regulate what people see when they search for you on the web. Their DIY tool allows you to configure what you want displayed so you can submit your resume with peace of mind. Create your free account to give it a try.
Use common sense. As a job seeker or one seeking a promotion you know common sense is always needed. Once you make the necessary changes to your resume using the steps listed, clean up your social media accounts, and you receive the call for an interview, remember common sense plus etiquette can take you far. Remember your thank-you email/note to the interviewer. Send it after the interview or the very next morning. You want to be remembered and viewed as a primary candidate amongst the dozens or hundreds!
God speed in your job search and don’t forget to tell us how everything turned out!