Most of my advice is around “how to’s”. How to write a resume. How to optimize LinkedIn. How to demonstrate your value to an employer. While all of this is very important, like anything else, the “how not to’s” can be equally as critical.
- Don’t copy and paste your resume into your LinkedIn. Are they very similar? Absolutely! Are they exactly the same. Not really. LinkedIn is not as formal, hard hitting, or as private as your resume. By doing a blanket copy-paste you are exposing yourself to various issues. Your resume, by design, should be quantified like crazy – numbers used as much as possible to demonstrate your effectiveness. LinkedIn is not the place for these kinds of numbers. It feels different – show-ier and boastful – and can offend a current or potential employer who feels you are not discrete with proprietary data.
- Don’t just rely on job boards. Sure, there is a place for job boards. Fill out a profile and post your resume to LinkedIn and Indeed. Career Builder if you must, and niche job boards if you are in an industry that warrants it. But please, if you are going to invest time and/or money in your resume, don’t just send it out using job boards. It’s a waste of time. You absolutely need to be networking, using LinkedIn, thinking and acting outside of the job board box if you want to stand out.
- Don’t send standard form letters as thank yous. While you absolutely need to send a thank you letter. I don’t even offer thank you letters as a service to my clients! I feel so strongly that they should be written after the job interview and targeted around the actual content of my interview that I will not craft them before my clients as part of the resume writing process.
- Don’t rely on the opinion of one person when writing your resume. Whether that person is a professional resume expert like myself or an HR director like your favorite aunt, it’s one person’s opinion. The effectiveness of the resume in many ways parallels the housing market. If your house is priced effectively and the market is efficient, the house will move. Our job market is currently relatively efficient. There are great opportunities out there and companies are hiring. If you are realistic in your expectations and have a resume that effectively showcases your value, anchored by quantifiable or demonstrable achievements, and you are working your network, it is very likely that doors will open.
- Don’t forget to do your homework. If you have made it to the interview stage, it is up to you to close the deal. At the very least, Google the company, find the company page on LinkedIn, locate the person who is interviewing you on LinkedIn, read the website, and come up with a few conversation starter questions. Who are their competitors? What are the primary challenges faced by the person in this role? Is this a new position? You get the idea.
Wondering what I can do for your resume and your job search? I help my clients refine, quantify, and clearly communicate their value to potential employers. The modern resume needs to be eye-catching, concise, and powerful. There is no risk to reaching out and if you’re reading this post, you are probably struggling with an aspect of your search. Mention code 5DONTS to receive a free cover letter with your resume project. Let’s get started today!