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Showing posts from July, 2012

Cover Me

I have a confession to make. Although I identify myself as a writer, I HATE cover letters. Reading them, writing them -- doesn't matter. There's too much of a tightrope walk between bragging about your accomplishments (eloquently!) and trying not to seem too desperate as you plead your case for job competency.
Some people agree with me. Nevertheless, it doesn't seem as if the cover letter plus resume culture will completely fade. Unfortunately, I don't have a surefire way to construct a cover letter to guarantee it'll get read by recruiters. Some like a story. Some prefer a terse, businesslike recounting of your most interesting accomplishments. Others - who knows. I haven't cracked it yet.
I recently thumbed through Knock 'em Dead Cover Letters for the umpteenth time. I'll be honest. The book itself is boring, the examples providing inspiration on the level of an eighth grade remedial English class. If you're not a writer, it could provide some bas…

Resuming Resumes

I recently sent my resume to a friend for his review. It's fascinating to see different folks' criticism of form and content, but I wasn't prepared for his evaluation.

"It's only one page?!" he squawked.
"You can let it run to two pages?!" I squeaked back. I was stunned. I've read a lot of resume-writing articles and books, but I was still stuck in the one-page-or-bust mindset. Fortunately, my friend blew apart my mediocre resume. Miracle of miracles -- I suddenly had room to explain my biggest accomplishments.

There's a lot of advice about what works and what doesn't for resumes and cover letters, but I've learned to keep it simple. Show your strengths. If you're passionate about the projects you've worked on, it will show on your resume and others can catch the vision.

Most of all, I've learned about the power of human relationships. Not simply playing the job hunting equivalent of LinkedIn Professional Pokemon (gotta c…