If you don’t want to frighten away your prospective boss before Hallowe’en, cross these resume tactics off your list.
- Lies and Embellishments: The fastest way to lose your chance at that pumpkin of a job is to lie on your resume. Lying includes anything you can’t substantiate, such as:
- Fudging on dates to cover an employment gap.
- Nudging up the percentages on your sales revenue so it looks better.
- Pretending your BA in Business is an MBA.
- Being creative with references.
Anything you claim on your resume you have to live with for as long as you hold the job. Being somebody else is exhausting. Better to land a job that fits you.
“Fool-proof” Tricks: Job searches are hard. There are ways to make them easier such as hiring a professional resume writer and career coach who can guide you through the employment house of horrors. Unfortunately, there just aren’t any sure-fire, guaranteed, never-miss ways to get a job. So, don’t believe the myths like:
- A one-page resume is the way to go for everyone, no matter the industry.
- Hire me to write your resume, and I guarantee you’ll land the job of your dreams.
- No recruiter has ever read a cover letter.
- Resumes are dead; all you need is your LinkedIn profile.
Baffle them with Bull: Some job seekers take pains to make their resume as complicated as possible. They use a $5 phrase when a nickel verb would work better. They mistakenly believe making a subject sound complicated makes them look smart. The problem is that recruiters and other hiring authorities won’t spend the time figuring it out. They are in a hurry. They have 452 more resumes to look at, today.
Here are the rules for explaining complicated information:
- Keep it short and simple.
- Leave out most of the details.
- Get to the point – fast.
- Make sure it’s relevant to your career target.
Making it All About You: What? A resume that’s not about you? Boo! The truth is that a resume is a marketing document, and like all good marketing documents, the resume is all about the audience.
- Forget the objective that says what YOU want. Use a summary that tells how you fit the requirements of the employer.
- Pay close attention to the job posting. It’s your clue to what the employer wants.
- Don’t include irrelevant information just because you have it. If you are applying for a management job, leave out your sales information.
- Write in the language of the industry of your target employer. Don’t use jargon from other industries.
A Great Resume Will Get You a Job: Don’t I wish that were true! I write wonderful resumes, but not one of them has been solely responsible for landing someone a job. (Although one time, a boss held up my client’s resume in a meeting and said, “I want this guy.” But trust me, that doesn’t happen much.)
A resume is a door opener, an attention-getter, a marketing document. A resume puts you in — or out of — the running . The resume is where you start your job search. Then, it’s up to you to compare companies, choose a few to network into, make connections, follow up, ask the right questions, and finally, land an interview. That’s how it works out there in the real world.
So, remember these hints before you go trick-or-treating for a job. You’ll go much further if you avoid the shortcuts, myths, and guarantees.
Image courtesy Suriya Kankliang via freedigitalphotos.net