10 Cover Letter Tips http://orglearn.org/career_success_blog/2011/07/17/10-cover-letter-tips-for-effective-cover-letters/ from #rictownsend at #orglearn
View the blog and more resume tips directly from http://www.orglearn.org/orglearn-blog.html
Article – Greg Schaffer, Computerworld
“…and less than half have made the cut. Although I rejected some candidates because of their lack of experience (or, rather, their lack of demonstrated required experience), others had errors in their application packages that lowered their ranking — errors that could have been easily corrected.”
The rest is at the link below and…
It is a resume writers “MUST READ” —> www.cio.com/article/print/489104
Blog now expanded with an RSS feed that will update on other career issues. It is no good getting a job with great cover letter and resume and… interview technique, if you can’t grow enough to keep it. Issues such as leadership, management, communication skills, emotional intelligence, sales and selling skills, competence, managing meetings, entrepreneurial work practices and working smarter.
Cover Letter, Career Advice and How To Write A Resume
New information regarding how and what to emphasize in your employment cover letter has been added to orglearn and new resume examples and information has also been added to the site. There is now additional career advice on management in the form of a series of short lessons/articles. The user interface has been further resourced with more tips on how to write a resume and useability has been expanded in that you can now join the resume form site and submit questions or make comments.
A) In screening the resume the points which I ‘take care of’ particularly would be:
1) Education qualification required for the job
2)Relevant experience [I assume in line with ad specs]
3) Job stability – for me which is very important criteria
4) Location [particularly if there is no relocation package offered]
B) While screening resume, I look for three things – education, experience and age. In my view if these three parameters match with the requirment, you have a relevant candidate and you may go ahead and read the rest of resume for more details.
C) 1. The professional structure of the resume for the same reason that the candidate is not physically present and as such a resume is a proxy for him. The better the presentation the easier it is for me to have a glimpse into the candidate’s professionalism.
2. Secondly I would seek for an alignment between the job profile, the special and general skill set that is required for the best performance of the job offered.
3. The personal quallities of the candidate ie his enthusiasm and willing to go extra mile. Therein the “value-clarification” on the part of the candidate is something that will attract my attention. The more we are value-driven to do something the more we achieve in life.
And a current (1st qtr 09) concern…
D] “Unfortunately, the primary force that rules many employment decisions is the *fear of making a hiring mistake *. In these tough economic times, that’s why so few in the hiring arena take a chance on somebody. They believe if they don’t get everything right about a hire, then it’ll be their jobs on the line come next layoff.”
Can I suggest you read “Top 30 Executive Resume Pet Peeves of Hiring Decision-Makers” – by Katharine Hansen, Ph.D. before you use the free blank resume form at orglearn!
Some of the peeves are:
1. Resume has spelling errors, typos and grammatical flaws.
2. Resume is too long.
3. Resume is too wordy, contains too much information.
4. Resume is written in third-person.
5. Resume does not list phone number, only an e-mail address, or has inappropriate e-mail address.
6. Resume contains the personal pronoun “I.”
and more, well worth a read…
Remember you can go here for the free resume form
When times are tough your resume must be perfect! Ric
Well the whole idea of writing a great resume is to get an interview. So when you do get one don’t mess it up!
On first read of this article I thought it was funny… then I realized it was a bit sad.
“You know enough to bring a list of questions to a job interview. When the interviewer asks you, “So, do you have any questions for me?” the last thing? You want to say is “No.” But that could be the best option if you’re at a loss for words, because some interview questions are better left unasked.
Here are 10 highly unsuitable interview questions that should never make an appearance, unless you don’t want the job:”… the rest is here
Update now, use the free blank resume (résumé or resumé) form, fill in the blank sections by editing/personalizing the sample statements. Spell it as you wish however you really need to do it.
…or you may wish to visit
What managers need to do & the issues to consider in the soft skills area of your role. Articles on behaviour, motivation, selling skills, competence development, teamwork & leadership. Free resume template/form and examples, write your resume to see how you are progressing with the commercial realities of what you have to offer employers.
Excerpt from a Questcareer article:
Ann Hackett - “15 Tips for Writing Winning Resumes”
“14.Have someone else review your resume. Since you are so close to your situation, it can be difficult for you to hit all your high points and clearly convey all your accomplishments. Have someone review your job search objective, your resume, and listings of positions that interest you. Encourage them to ask questions. Their questions can help you to discover items you inadvertently left off your resume. Revise your resume to include these items. Their questions can also point to items on your resume that are confusing to the reader. Clarify your resume based on this input.”
Great article and worth a read: http://www.questcareer.com/tips.htm
Remember we are often blind to our own errors of judgment or how we are actually are ‘seen by others’, so a frank and honest review of what we have written my hurt… however it may help… a lot!
Your cover letter should be specifically written and targeted at the position you seek rather than just come across as your cover letter type ‘form letter’.
Effective cover letters explain the reasons for your interest in the specific organization and why you would like to work for them – a disguised compliment perhaps… and everyone likes a compliment.
Effective cover letters also identify your relevant competencies (skills and knowledge when applied to specific tasks) supported by relevant proof statements (based on past job roles, achievements and responsibilities).
If you have been referred to a company by a mutual contact (ensure your contact is in good standing and with your potential employer) and use their name in your letter. (e.g. Fred Jones recommended I contact you regarding the position of xyz)
Your letter must include an explanation of how/where you learned of the position you are applying for and you must ensure you have the correct title of the position and/or any relevant reference number if included in their advertisement.
more next time
As you can see from the links listed on this blog I have a website with a free blank resume template. Many individuals send me their resume, I store it so, as recently happened, when they lose it I can on request send it back to the distressed resume writer.
To digress for a moment. The thing about selling and buying is that many (all) of us will seek a third party opinion before buying anything. Just stand in the women’s department of a major store and see how many people ask the sales assistant, a friend or even a passer by “what do you think does this suit me” and you will see what I mean. Yes, men do it as well!
So back to your resume:
Here are a few statements from the last few I have received:
I am hard working and fast learning – unsubstantiated claim and boastful
I do the best that I can – poor attempt at a boast verging on an excuse for past failings
I am able to troubleshoot and repair – hmm almost a boast
I am driven to pursue my ambitions and goals through relentless effort and experience [with] companies that will help me achieve my dreams – no one would want employ this person, he/she give the impression they are just in it for themselves
I [Mary1] have great customer service skills – same comment as the first example above
In a previous post I suggested you write without using personal pronouns as by doing this you give the impression of a to avoid a resume that is full of boasts and/or self centred statements.
Lets take the last one and fix it for Mary
Sales results testify to (2) great customer skills… see it sounds more credible already. Add a proof statement and wow…
or (3) Excellent customer skills are reflected in the customer survey sheets received.
Positive staff appraisals comment as to (4) great customer skills.
You tell me, if you where culling sales rep resumes, which Mary would you choose to call in for an interview?
Oh no… while writing this I just received another one that started with… “I am a well qualified individual”… urrgh
Try the free blank resume – fill in the blank sections and build your resume using the online form at www.orglearn.org
Obviously your resume needs to highlight the your breadth of knowledge (in relation to the job being advertised). Too much depth can become boring, you can give expanded information if requested at the interview stage. Just as importantly you need to show who you know. If you have reported to, or worked in project teams with senior executives such as a “vice president”, “director” or “department manager” list it in your resume. Having worked with to someone considered ‘important’ could help to convince the reader to determine that you are also ‘important’.
As in selling anything the ‘buyer’ is looking for the benefits you bring. To make a benefit statement you need to write down a full “FAB” statement to make sure you are actually listing the benefit you are offering. The best way to do this is to start with a (F) feature which turns into an (A) advantage that finally delivers a (B) benefit.
Example: Your Feature may be say, “Fred holds a full XYZ (whatever it is where you live) drivers license which means he can (Advantage) operate all vehicles in your fleet / production facility (giving the Benifit of) removing the need for additional/temporary drivers for a wide range of operations.
Another example could be: Mary has two degrees (F) which gives her (B) a solid level of knowledge in both discipline X and discipline Y which will assist (now the Benefit) in the overall integration of the organization’s functions and reduce the possibility of interdepartmental tensions.
These types of “FAB statements” help convince the potential employer that you have the competencies that it takes to be both successful in the new position and in your ongoing career with the company. Of course the benefits must relate to the desired ‘attributes’ or ‘skills’ listed in the ad you are responding to.
Use ‘formal’ language and short crisp well structured sentences – easy to read absorb.
Use subheadings – they help the overworked hiring manger find what he/she is looking for quickly.
Use simple and clear typefaces – I think “Arial” is great.
Do not use jargon or abbreviations, check the spelling at least three times…. and have someone check your grammar.
Use statistics to quantify your responsibilities, job tasks and achievements. Examples: “managed a department of twelve people”, “was responsible for a sales budget of eight million dollars” or achieved production growth of 88%. Numbers will create vivid images in the reader’s mind that will be more likely stick.
A well written ‘generic’ resume is a great start however when applying for a job interview you must use the appropriate words and statements. So how how do you find out which words will get the attention of your reader. This is easy… just use as many words and statements, in your introduction, from their ad as you can. Example if they say they are looking for a ‘hard working team player that enjoys a personal challenge’ you use “team player”, “hardworking” and “likes a personal challenge” in your statements about yourself.