Nov 14, 2011

How to write resume and how to succeed at interviews - Part 2

In first part of this series, I have tried to put you in to position of hiring manager.
I have offered 2 simple advices to do right now. If you missed How to write resume part one, you may find it here: How to write resume.

Let's get right in to the business.

Self marketing attitude.

When I wanted to get new Job, strategy that always helped me was to get noticed.

It's like Marketing. You need to market and sell your identity and your skills needed for this position you apply for.

I know some marketing managers, and their job is to make sure, that people and their company is using all marketing channels in effective matter. Try to be like Marketing Manager of your own identity.

How to do it?

Have a great CV. I have described 2 ideas, not templates, what helped me to get in to Fortune 500 / Fortune 100 company and others in my previous career. See more here: How to write resume part 1.

Sending CV in to ONE email address is in most cases not enough.

Have you used LinkedIn? Do you have LinkedIn profile? 
Can you recognize someone from the company that you want to work for?
Did you let them know, that you want to apply? Do you have friends there?
Can they be your "marketing" agent?
Can you approach someone from this company at "any" kind of meetings or networking event?
Meet them personally?
Can you write email directly to hiring manager?
Could you get a phone number and call them directly?

Using more channels to get noticed, may show "your burning desire" to be hired.
Try to find balance between not communicating at all after sending CV and over-communicating
(be aware, that it may cause feeling that you are pushing too much)

LinkedIn profile and Facebook profile.

Before I applied for every job, I have done following:

Removed pictures from parties. No one is interested how much can you drink on Friday afternoon or how do you look like on the disco. Remember if you have your profile public to make some adjustments. Hiring managers like to do background check of your social presence.

Removed pictures that I am not sure about (i.e. facial expressions, weird group pictures etc)

Set proper smiling and positive pictures, information and relevant education with relevant hobbies, interests.

LinkedIn is crucial. It is huge. It uses keywords, and many other tools to identify, if you are proper candidate. Make sure, your LinkedIn profile is up to date, relevant and simple.

Never lie in your CV.

Fake skills and abilities, believe or not, are going to be exposed. Lying is wrong.
Skills in CV are very important ones, so include only those, that you consider for your strengths.

Use real numbers.

Most of the hiring managers (I know) do not like stories to read on CV.
Cover letter would be great place to write small "novel about yourself" but CV not.

Real numbers mean something like:

I did activity XY that resulted in to ZY k USD revenue, which was XY% YoY increase.


FY1X we achieved 1.2 Million USD in small regional team. In FY1Z I was able to overachieve my target and finish on 123% which resulted in to 25% YoY growth.

You may be in situation, that you did not achieved too much. I believe that even though, You may be able to find some nice numbers. For me, trying to focus on numbers gave me a bit more attention.

Keep it simple.

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