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The articles in this section cover topics ranging from common resume blunders to understanding hiring managers' criteria.


400 Articles. Showing 381 to 390
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Additional Resume Writing Section

There are many categories that can be added to a resume besides the basic education and experience sections. However, if you're adding categories just for the sake of adding them, you need to reevaluate the layout of your resume. Only add these groupings if they are relevant to the position you are applying for. Some categories that may apply are Community Service or Volunteer Work, Publications, Presentations or Lectures, Licensures or Certifications, Computer Skills, and References. All of these could have different levels of relevance to your desired position and should be evaluated accordingly. Doing this will help increase your chances of landing an interview, which is the purpose of a resume.

Addressing Red Flags and Weaknesses in your Resume

In a resume there are many chances to make common mistakes. These must be avoided as they turn potential employers away from considering you for hire. One of the things that turn off employers is if it appears that you have hopped from job to job with no long term goal in mind. Therefore, you must be weary of providing a long list of experiences that have no relevance to the position they are hiring for. A lack of experience will also weaken your candidacy; however, even if you don't have any experiences that are directly relevant to the position you desire, you may be able to find some transferable skills you've acquired that you can highlight in your resume. There are many ways in which you can make your resume positive.

Apply! Apply! Apply!

Applying for a job is a scary thing. It means opening yourself up to the possibility of rejection. It means that you'll be moving beyond what might feel comfortable. You may be experiencing last-minute feelings of guilt or disloyalty toward your current employer for wanting to leave. Or you might be feeling anxiety about where you fit into the marketplace. Knowing and understanding that it's scary, however, is the first step in overcoming any fears you may be experiencing. One bit of advice that we've found helpful is this: "If you're never being rejected, you're not aiming high enough."

Demystifying the "Employer"

To an active job-seeker, the term "employer" doesn't simply refer to a human being who needs to hire another human being. Instead, it refers to a mysterious god-like entity who selects the "good" from the "bad." Many job seekers believe that the key to a successful resume or cover letter lies in a magic phrase, word, format, or font that will immediately land them on the "good" pile. They believe that the hiring partner or recruiter is a proverbial Rumpelstiltskin, waiting for some insightful job seeker to say their names.

Don't Become a "Resume and Cover Letter Obsessor"

Equally as dangerous as the resume and cover letter slobs are the resume and cover letter obsessors. Obsessors are those who nitpick and question every single word in their materials. They spend hours debating whether to use "effectively" or "successfully," "simultaneously" or "at the same time." They circulate their resumes at dinner parties and take polls on whether their name should be in 18- or 20-point font in their headings.

Drafting a Cover Letter for Any Situation

You quit your last position because you thought your boss was an unethical scumbag. You decided after 15 years of trying to ''make it'' as an actor, that you should finally put that psychology degree to good use. You took time off to backpack through Europe after graduation, unexpectedly fell in love, and spent the next three years frolicking through the streets of Paris with your amour—all before he/she vanished into thin air and you decided it was time to get a job. These may be extreme examples, but most job seekers have something that they feel might keep them from obtaining their ideal job, even if their resumes are in great shape. That's where the cover letter comes in. This article will help you to assess what your cover letter needs to say based on your own unique situation.

Frequently Asked Questions About Cover Letters

Here are brief answers to some frequently asked questions about cover letters:

1) What is the proper tone of a cover letter?

Highlight Your Accomplishments!

We can't emphasize enough how important it is to highlight accomplishments. This is the number-one item that makes or breaks a resume, yet it's the one area that people struggle with the most. First, you need to understand what is meant by an "accomplishment." To have accomplished something in your work, you did not have to negotiate a multi-billion-dollar deal or find the answer to world peace (although those would certainly be worth mentioning). You simply need to have done something that produced a favorable result, whether that was for your employer, your coworkers, your clients, or even you. This could be as simple as making your coworkers' jobs easier by devising a new method of filing documents. Simple? Yes. An accomplishment? Absolutely. The main thing you want to get across when describing your jobs is that you did them well. Employers want to hire people who have proven themselves as to be valuable.

The Summary of Qualifications or Profile

The opening of your resume should show power and confidence. Writing a summary of your previous experiences will grab the employer's attention and increase your chances of getting an interview. The top portion is the part that will be focused on the most. This needs to be filled with power to show that you will be an asset to the company. When you summarize prior work history, it allows the employer to get to the point and not be bored with your resume. Summarizing will free up space on the resume and will allow you to put focus on the more important things. This also allows you to focus on important parts of previous jobs. There are a few main areas to focus on. These are Profiles, Summary of Qualifications, Areas of Expertise, and Professional Accomplishments. Each section is very important and should grab the employer's attention. Creating a powerful resume is the first step to obtaining a job.

How to Sell Yourself to an Employer

The key feature in obtaining a job is selling yourself to the employer. Selling yourself is the only way to get even in the playing field. Others may have fewer qualifications, but if they can sell themselves they can secure the job they want. Put yourself in the place of the employer and list what you would want to see on a resume when hiring someone. When you cater to the mind of an employer you have made a critical step in the process. Remember that your resume and cover letter may be their only chance to get to know you, so make it count. Pay attention to networking with those around you every day. Which ones catch your attention and which ones don't? Make sure to know your audience and tailor your resume to them.

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