Posts Tagged ‘Ty Norwood’

The Power of Passivity: Seek Not and Ye Shall Find

Wednesday, November 15th, 2017

Employers are frequently found to prefer passive job seekers over active ones, so how can you use this knowledge to improve your career prospects?

While you may think that being proactive gives you an edge in your job hunt, research has shown that many employers favor job seekers who are playing it cool. Passive job seekers are those that are open to a new position, although not actively searching or applying for vacancies. Instead of spending hours sifting through job boards and contacting companies, your best bet for progressing your career could be to “play hard to get” and entice recruiters to come to you.

Passive job seekers have the advantage

A recent study revealed that 80% of HR professionals feel passive job seekers are the best source of quality employees. However, the survey also found that only 47% of job seekers are aware of this fact, showing that employers and candidates have very different understandings of what works in the recruitment world.

When asked what makes passive candidates more attractive than active ones, 42% of respondents said these individuals take their careers more seriously, 44% felt that they had the most experience, and an additional 44% said they had the best skill sets.

Even if you’re unemployed, you can turn into a passive job seeker right now by freelancing, becoming an entrepreneur, volunteering, or blogging. By engaging in these activities while you search for a job, you won’t have gaps on your resume, you’ll be practicing new skills, and you’ll potentially be earning side income so you will be less desperate for a job, which makes you more attractive as a candidate (and gives you leverage).

Tips for becoming a passive job seeker

Now that you’ve recognized the “power of passivity” in attaining long-term job search success, try using the following strategies to your advantage:

1. Keep your resume up-to-date – If a recruiter ever contacts you about a position, you want to be ready to show them what you can do immediately.

2. Stay involved online – While you may not be engaging in an active job search, maintaining an online presence means staying in the forefront of your professional contacts’ minds. This includes building a robust LinkedIn profile, joining relevant LinkedIn Groups, and tapping into social networking (Facebook, Google+, and Twitter, for example) to strengthen your social presence.

3. Develop a solid pool of referrals – Professional connections are the biggest assets of a passive job seeker, as their recommendations will do the legwork for you. Stay connected with your network via social media and offer help in return, rather than just building your network and only reaching out when you’re looking for a job. If you’re interested and engaged, your contacts will be more likely to give you help if and when you need it.

4. Write Recommendations – Giving to get works every time. Write LinkedIn recommendations for some of your connections. In return, you’ll get a recommendation back from at least some of the people you provide a reference for. Those recommendations show on your Profile and they are a reference in advance to a potential employer.

5. Be Interview Ready – Don’t use up all your accrued vacation or personal leave time unless you have to. Keep some in reserve, so you have time to interview if an opportunity that’s too good to pass up comes along.

Good luck!

The power of passivity: How not looking could get you the job | via Talent International.

Things You Should Never Put on Your Resume

Wednesday, November 1st, 2017

Which blunders will send your resume straight into oblivion? There might be dozens (apart from simple things, like bad grammar and spelling), depending on the job, but experts say including these five things on your resume are most likely to derail your job search:

1. A list of every job you’ve ever held

Hiring managers don’t want to know about that summer you worked as a lifeguard—unless you’re applying to manage the park district’s pool.

Recruiters and hiring managers are looking for relevance and stability. The key is to list the work you’ve done in the past 10 to 15 years that tells an employer you’re a skilled, reliable fit for the job.

Say you’ve had three employers in the past seven years but only two of them are in the industry you’re applying for. Employers don’t want to see a gap in your employment record, so you still need to list that third job — just make sure you list the accomplishments in that job that are relevant to the job you’re applying for.

2. Your Age

Hiring managers need to know what you can do for them, not how many years you’ve managed to stay alive. Therefore, experts commonly argue against:

* Listing professional experience more than 15 years old.
* Providing an exact number of years of professional experience in your opening summary.

And don’t forget that age bias cuts both ways: A resume that tells a future boss you’re too young for the job is no good, either.

3. Lists of tasks or duties without results

Your resume has to go beyond saying which jobs you’ve done: It must establish what you’ve accomplished on those jobs. Many applicants miss this key distinction.

The only things that separate equally qualified candidates are the results of their efforts. For example, an administrative assistant may write, “reorganized filing system.” That provides the task. What were the results? A better way to write it would be, “Increased team productivity 20% by reorganizing filing system.” Results are what matter to hiring managers.

4. Explanations of anything negative

Everybody has dark stories in their past.

There’s no place for them on your resume. Your resume is a promotional document and all promotional documents need to be positive.

The time to explain yourself is when you’re talking to the hiring manager in person after you’ve scored an interview.

5. Personal details

Employers usually don’t care about your marital status, race, sexual orientation or hobbies, unless they are somehow pivotal to the job. Including personal data is a rookie mistake, and nobody wants to hire a rookie.

Crafting and sending a resume is part of the “discovery phase” of the hiring process so employers at this phase don’t need personal details beyond your name, city, state and a way to contact you. If you make it to the hiring phase, the human resources department will collect your relevant personal details then.

Most resumes are now transmitted electronically, and there’s no way to be sure where one might end up after you send it in. With identity thieves always on the prowl, you always need to protect your personal data. Never include your Social Security number.

6. A photo of yourself

This is probably more applicable to international candidates, who generally have more experience with resume and CV formats that include a photo. However, standard policy for US resumes is not to include one. Partly this is due to the age and personal details issues above (i.e., potential for bias).

But also, if your resume has your photo, a recruiter isn’t going to spend any longer looking at it. Instead, they’ll just waste part of the valuable 6-10 seconds generally spent scanning a resume looking at the picture instead of reading what they need to find out about you.

Good luck!

5 Things You Should Never Put on Your Resume | by Tom Mangan via Monster.

Simple Interview Tips That Work

Wednesday, October 18th, 2017

Job interviewing never seems to get any easier – even when you have gone on more interviews than you can count. You are always meeting new people, having to sell yourself and your skills, and often getting the third degree about what you know or don’t know. And, you have to stay upbeat and enthusiastic throughout each interview.

That said, there are ways to make a job interview much less stressful.

Invest a little time prior to the interview getting ready, and it will be much easier to handle. The key to effective interviewing is to project confidence, stay positive, and be able to share examples of your workplace skills and your qualifications for the job.

Brush up your communication skills, so you can speak clearly and concisely about the assets you have to offer the employer. Take the time to work on your interview skills – effective interviewing will help you get hired.

Here are a few simple job interview tips to help prepare you to interview effectively:

Practice and Prepare

Practice your responses to the typical job interview questions and answers most employers ask. Think of concrete examples you can use to highlight your skills. The easiest way to do this is to make a list of the job requirements, and match them to your experience. Providing evidence of your successes is a great way to promote your candidacy.

Also, have a list of your own questions to ask the employer ready.

Research the Company
Do your homework about the employer and the industry, so you are ready for the interview question “What do you know about this company?” Try to relate what you have learned about the company when answering questions. Know the interviewer’s name, and use it during the job interview. If you’re not sure of the name, call and ask prior to the interview. Building rapport and making a personal connection with your interviewer can up your chances of getting hired. People tend to hire candidates they like, and who seem to be a good fit for the company culture.

Get Ready Ahead of Time

Don’t wait until the last minute to pick out an interview outfit, print extra copies of your resume, or find a notepad and pen. Have one good interview outfit ready, so you can interview on short notice without having to worry about what to wear. When you have an interview lined up, get everything ready the night before. Make sure your interview attire is neat, tidy and appropriate for the type of firm you are interviewing with. Bring a nice portfolio with extra copies of your resume. Include a pen and paper for note-taking.

Be On Time (That Means Early)

Be on time for the interview. On time means five to ten minutes early. If need be, take some time to drive to the interview location ahead of time so you know exactly where you are going and how long it will take to get there. Give yourself a few extra minutes to visit the rest room, check your outfit, and calm your nerves.

Try to Stay Calm

During the job interview, try to relax and stay as calm as possible. Remember that your body language says as much about you as your answers to the questions. Proper preparation will allow you to exude confidence. Take a moment to regroup if you need it. Maintain eye contact with the interviewer. Listen to the entire question (active listening) before you answer, and pay attention – you will be embarrassed if you forget the question.

Show What You Know

Try to relate what you know about the company when answering questions. When discussing your career accomplishments, match them to what the company is looking for. Use examples from your research when answering questions, “I noticed that when you implemented a new software system last year, your customer satisfaction ratings improved dramatically. I am well versed in the latest technologies from my experience with developing software at ABC, and appreciate a company who strives to be a leader in its industry.” Take the time to make a match between your expertise and the company’s requirements, and to sell yourself to the interviewer.

Follow Up

Always follow-up with a thank you note reiterating your interest in the position. You can also include any details you may have forgotten to mention during your interview. If you interview with multiple people send each one a personal note. Send your thank you note (email is fine) within 24 hours of your interview.

So with some advance preparation, you’ll be able to nail the interview and showcase the experience that makes you the ideal candidate for the company’s next new employee.

Good luck!

7 Interview Tips That Will Help You Get the Job | by Alison Doyle via the Balance.

Avoiding the Path to Rejection – Software Engineering Resumes

Wednesday, October 4th, 2017

So you sent your resume to your favorite tech companies and never heard back from any of them?

Guess what, you’re not alone. Top technology companies like Google receive over 2 million job applications a year and only hire about 5000 people. So the average applicant’s odds are only 1 out of 400, says Laszlo Bock, Head of People Operations at Google. Presumably this includes all roles at Google; it is quite possible the odds are even worse for their engineering positions.

Admittedly, this is at one of the premier technology firms in the world, but the situation is not much different at other companies. There is a good chance that your resume is going to be shelved without you ever learning the reason. To not end up in the rejected pile, you must at least avoid the following mistakes in your software engineer resume:

1. Not sending your resume via an employee referral

If you are applying directly via a company’s website or through a job board, please stop!

As per the Impact Group Study in 2010, job applications using networking or referrals are far more successful than applying online. 26.7% of external hires made by organizations came from referrals, making it the number one external source of hiring. 46% of men and 39% of women find their jobs through networking. The higher your salary, the more effective networking becomes.

2. Not tailoring your resume for each job application

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to use the same resume for each job application. While most of the content will remain the same, it is easy to customize the headline and summary sections at the top where you can convey your fit for that particular position. You can highlight the relevant skills in your professional summary to enable an employer to quickly get a grasp of the most impressive and pertinent items in your profile.

3. Not mentioning your online presence

Given how easy and cheap it is to maintain a personal website, social media profile, or blog, it is inexcusable for a software engineer not to have one these days. A blog showcases your knowledge, the kind of work you’ve been doing, and how long you’ve been involved in it. It demonstrates your writing skills and how clearly you can communicate your thoughts. And with linking and discussions, you can show your level of connection with current trends and technologies. It also gives you a significant advantage when a prospective employer can look at your site or blog and assess your fit for their work, beyond the brief summary included in your resume (which will always need to be limited in length and scope).

If you don’t have a website or a blog yet, consider including your Stack Overflow, GitHub, or any other public profile link that could demonstrate your skills. At the very least, you should include your LinkedIn profile and make sure it’s more than just a stub.

4. Not highlighting relevant projects

Top tech companies and startups are looking for killer projects in your profile.

Anyone can build mundane school projects but what personal projects did you create? Did you build an expense sharing app to use among your friends? Or a budget app for your Mom? These projects show your passion for programming because you built them just for fun or utility. Good companies look for such passionate candidates.

These projects can make or break your shortlisting chances especially when your current job profile is not very relevant. If you are an enterprise application developer at a bank, for example, and are applying to Google or Facebook or Twitter, then your work is unlikely to impress them straight away. To make the cut and stay in contention, you need to differentiate yourself, and listing independent projects is certainly one way to do that.

To do this right, of course, you need to understand the job requirement first and then determine what kind of projects would be most relevant. Cut out old school projects and add these instead. If you don’t have any, don’t apply yet and first work on some projects that will be worth mentioning!

5. Not using the right keywords

Most big employers and job boards use applicant tracking systems to store and manage the huge number of resumes they receive. Keyword searching becomes a necessary evil here for screening and filtering out the best candidates. And since most jobs have at least one, non-negotiable requirement, including relevant keywords related to that requirement is essential (adding Hadoop, for example, for a Data Scientist position).

Keywords aren’t just restricted to tools and technologies, of course, but could also be functional titles such as ‘product manager’, ‘SEO’, ‘social media manager’, etc.

So think of what keywords are pertinent to the position you are applying for and include those in your resume to ensure that it is shortlisted during first-level ATS filtering.

6. Not removing irrelevant or unimpressive certifications

There are only a few companies or hiring managers impressed by a SCJP certification. In fact, there can be times when it serves as a negative signal. Ideally, your expertise in a technology should be reflected in your projects and not in the number of certifications under your name.

Unless a job opening specifically asks for a certification or it is extremely relevant, you should leave it off of your resume. For example, if you are applying for network engineering roles that involve working on Cisco switches and routers, including a certification like CCNA might be helpful.

At the end of the day, your resume is supposed to highlight your accomplishments and the skills relevant to the position for which you are applying. Every line should conform to these goals. Anything that does not add value to your candidacy should be mercilessly removed.

If you’ve done it right, your well-designed resume will prioritize the right information and get you past the initial screening. After that, during the interview, it’s all up to you!

Good luck!

Dear Software Engineer – This is why your resume was rejected | by Nistha Tripathi via Scholar Strategy.

Why You Need to Hire a Professional Resume Writer

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017

If Your Resume Isn’t Opening Doors, Get Some Professional Help

Job searching sure is expensive. After all, it costs money to dry clean your interview suit, fill up your tank and drive to each and every job interview. And at a time when you’re counting every nickel and dime, you don’t want to spend any more cash than necessary.

But if you’ve been job searching for some time without success, it may not be what you’re saying, but how you’re coming across on paper. That’s where a resume writer comes in. Resume writers are not just professional writers, but they’re experts in making your resume stand out from the rest of the applicant pool. Here’s why you might need a resume writer, and why it’s such a good investment.

1. U Can’t Right Good

Let’s say you’re an accountant.

Dollars and cents are your game, not words. So if you’re struggling to express your previous work experience well—and your writing confuses HR professionals like advanced math perplexes most of society—a resume writer can help. He/she can discern what needs to be on your resume (and perhaps more importantly, what doesn’t), and express it all professionally.

2. You’re Stuck in the Past

When you look at your resume, you think it looks totally awesome. But when a hiring manager sees it, all he’s seeing is the year 1986.

Like music and fashion, even resumes have to be stylish so they can get more than a passing glance from a potential boss. If you’re not sure of what the current trends are, a professional service can give your resume the extra savoir-faire it deserves. From the quality of the paper it’s printed on to the template used, the writer will make sure that your resume reads—and looks—its best.

3. You’re Not Getting Interviews on Your Own

You know your work experience is impressive and your workplace skills are stellar. So why aren’t you getting any interviews?

The main reason could be your subpar resume. A professionally written resume can open doors for you that might lead to a great job. It’s also good to keep in mind you might even need several versions of your resume, depending on the type of job interview you have. These advanced nuances are things with which a professional resume writer can assist.

4. You’re Shy

To you, a resume is a necessary evil. It’s basically a depiction of all your previous accomplishments and accolades, and frankly, you’re not the bragging type.

You might need an expert to help you through the process if you have a hard time talking about yourself, much less writing it all down on paper. There’s no shame in getting help with this because writing about yourself is one of the toughest assignments, and you’re often your own worst critic.

A professional resume writer will know how to spotlight your most worthy accomplishments because he’s looking at them with fresh, unbiased eyes. Let him turn your resume into something that’s personable and professional.

5. You Have Issues

Maybe you left the workplace so you could raise your family, and now there’s a huge gap in your employment history. Or perhaps you’re changing career fields and don’t quite know how to revamp your resume to show off the skills you have for this new industry. While you can’t rewrite history, a professional writer will know just how to accentuate the positives on your resume, and write away any negative aspects.

Hiring a resume writer may not be an option for everyone and some people can do the job on their own. But for those who have the necessary skills but are struggling to get interviews, a professionally polished resume can be one of the best investments you make as you continue on your job search.

So if you’re looking for an edge, an upgrade, and a boost to your job search contact us today!

5 Reasons to Hire a Professional Resume Writer | Sara Sutton Fell via Salary.com.

What to Research Before a Job Interview

Wednesday, August 9th, 2017

You know that weird feeling between excitement and dread that accompanies an invitation to interview? It’s especially strong when you know next to nothing about your potential workplace.

However, even if the first time you’ve ever heard of the company you’re interviewing with was the day you sent in your application, you can still walk in like you’ve known about the place for years. The key is to do some pre-interview research to make sure you can handle anything specific to the company that might come up (and offer suggestions to address the company’s particular situation if afforded the opportunity). Below are some topics and strategies you might consider.

Keep in mind, of course, that they will likely be researching you as well, going beyond just your resume and cover letter. So make sure you research yourself as well and clean up your online presence as much as possible!

1. The skills and experience the company values.

First and foremost, you should know what the company looks for in a qualified candidate. This enables you to position yourself as the best candidate for the position.

To discover the skills and experience the employer values, read between the lines of their job postings. You can also find out information on the employer’s career page to get an idea of the type of employees their desire. In addition, reach out to current employees who work there and ask them about what their employer values most in the workplace.

2. Key players of the organization.

The key players within an organization are those employees who hold important positions in the company. These individuals can be managers, department directors, and especially the CEO/president of the company.

You can find out who the key players of the organization by reading the employer’s “About” page and employee bios. It’s also a good idea to check out what these individuals say on Twitter and LinkedIn to learn what employees say about the company online.

3. News and recent events about the employer.

When you go into a job interview, it’s always a good idea to be knowledgeable about the company’s latest news and updates.

Most companies have a page on their website dedicated to press releases and events. This is a great source for you to find out information regarding the company’s latest news and updates.

4. The company’s culture, mission, and values.

Job seekers should be able to confidently say they’re good fit for the company’s culture during any job interview. In fact, a Millennial Branding study says 43 percent of HR professionals believe cultural fit is the most important quality job seekers can have during the hiring process.

As you research the employer, pay attention to what’s written on their website regarding the company’s values and mission. You can also learn more about the company culture by following the organization on its social media networks.

5. Clients, products, and services.

As a potential employee, you need to have an idea of the type of work you’d be doing once hired. By having a general idea of who the company’s clients are and the types of products and services are offered, you’ll be more prepared for the interview, too.

To find out the company’s offerings, you can usually find them on the company’s website. You can also read through the company’s blog, case studies, and white papers to give you a better idea of their accomplishments.

6. The inside scoop.

To ensure you’re fully prepared for the job interview, websites such as Glassdoor help job seekers discover the inside details of a company that can’t be found on the employer’s website.

With these sites, you can typically find information such as salary figures, employee functions and duties, company reviews, details about the hiring process, and more.

7. The person interviewing you.

Finally, you should find out who the interviewer will be. This will give you an advantage during the interview because you’ll have a better chance of connecting with them and sparking a meaningful conversation.

Now it might be a little tricky trying to find out who the interviewer is, but you should be able to locate the person’s name with a little investigation. First, try locating the person’s name from email you received regarding the interview. If you can’t find any information, reply to the email politely requesting the name of the person who’ll interview you.

Once you acquire the interviewer’s name, do some research on LinkedIn and Twitter. This will help you learn about the interviewer’s background, their position with the company, and even some common interests you both share.

Good luck!

7 Things to Research Before Any Job Interview | Heather Huhman via Glassdoor.

Why a Targeted Resume is Critical

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

When applying for a job, it’s your responsibility to prove you’re the best candidate. This can be challenging if you can’t provide examples showing that this is, indeed, the case. A great way to show your worth is by focusing on what the employer needs most from the candidate who will fill the position, then tailoring your resume to address those needs specifically.

Targeting Your Resume Proves You Are the Best Fit for the Position

Employers absolutely need to know that the candidate they choose for a job is the best fit, which they do by confirming that a candidate’s past accomplishments and current skill set fall in line with the important day-to-day tasks and overarching goals of the position.

If you submit a generic resume that doesn’t address the specific needs of each company and showcase your professional capabilities, you are failing to prove that you are right for the position. And unfortunately, another candidate will be more than willing to pick up your slack — and take your dream job while they’re at it.

How Can You Ensure Your Resume Is Targeted?

So how do you create a targeted resume that will emphatically show an employer that you deserve the interview? Here are a few brief suggestions:

Research the company and position:

A great way to target your resume is to dig in and learn about the company and what the employer wants from its candidates. Once you acquire this information, you will be armed with specifics that can help you determine what contributions you can make to the company.

Customize a job target/title, branding statement, and career summary:

Instead of writing a bland objective statement, place a job target/title at the top of your resume that defines who you are as a professional. Also, create a branding statement (a one- or two-line statement that sums up the value you can offer each employer based upon their needs and how you can meet them) that is customized to the specific job. Then write a career summary (most commonly a bullet point list that shares your career highlights) listing accomplishments most pertinent to the position at the top.

Utilize keywords throughout:

It’s also important to utilize specific keywords in your resume. For example, if you are applying as an executive chef in the hospitality industry, you might incorporate keyword phrases like “menu planning”, “kitchen equipment”, “banquet meal production”, and “procurement of food supplies” as indicators of your knowledge of the field. Keywords should be used in your job target/title, branding statement, career summary, and most other sections in your resume.

Though targeting your resume requires a bit more effort (a resume writing professional can help!), it offers a lot more in return. By taking the time to customize a resume for each application, you give those companies no doubt that you are the best candidate for the job.

Good luck!

Why Writing Targeted Resumes is More Critical Than You Think | Jessica Holbrook Hernandez via HCareers.

What’s in a Title?

Friday, July 7th, 2017

For some, it’s ego. For some, it’s power. For some, it’s ambition. For some, it’s self-esteem. And for many job seekers, it could be what keeps you from or lands you your next role.

Your title.

The issue of your current and previous job titles is something to consider carefully, since HR and hiring managers often fixate on titles, which can be (but often are not) simple summaries of what a professional does and at what level. Often, though, depending on the company and the industry, titles can just as easily be misleading or confusing, making it difficult to effectively judge a candidate’s experience and capabilities (especially as regards seniority). And this can hold you back professionally in myriad ways.

So, how can you move on and up if your current title suggests that you don’t have the qualifications for that next step, even if, say, you have years of experience and could very well have a “higher” level title if not for extenuating circumstances such as your company’s budget or team structure? Is your only option to wait with baited breath for a promotion before you can start exploring other opportunities?

If you’re in this situation, you’ve likely asked yourself the following questions: Can you fudge your title on your resume? Embellish your role to be viewed as a more desirable candidate? Take pains to explain your position to the hiring manager? Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Examine and Clarify

A job seeker once told me she waited to start looking for a new job until after she got a promotion and title change (from associate editor to editor). While not terribly unhappy in her current role, she was ready to move on. “I probably would’ve done it sooner,” she confided, “but I was embarrassed by my job title.”

She explained that she wasn’t comfortable applying to roles as long as associate was a part of her title, and so stayed put. Now, promotion in hand—or on paper as it were—she was prepared to look forward and embrace a new opportunity, having ditched the label that she believed made her sound too junior for roles she felt qualified for.

If you’re at the point in your career when you could easily have the next title up, whatever that may be in your industry or field, clarify your position on your resume. So maybe you’ve been working as a production assistant for three years, but the truth is, you are the production team at your company.

You report to the director, yes, but you coordinate all of the in-house production, and you’ve moved so far beyond assisting anyone that it’s not even funny. But, for whatever lame reason, you’re stuck with the entry-level title you came in with (even though your salary has most definitely not stayed the same), and you’re worried that if you put that junior-sounding role on your resume, you’re only going to be eligible for roles that were appropriate when you were first starting out. You’ve learned so much since then and are far more qualified than your actual title suggests.

In this case, you’ll need to adapt your resume to close the gap between title and experience.

Redirect and Expand

There’s a really great way to navigate this challenging situation without being dishonest. Instead of putting production assistant on your resume, you put “Name of Company – Production Team – 3 Years.” You can always edit for clarity and communication so long as you’re not misleading or misrepresenting your background or experience.

If that type of clarification gets you an interview, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to explain how you started at the company, how the role and responsibilities evolved, and that because of the organization’s budget/protocol/whatever you never actually received a title change during your tenure there. In your resume, focus on the responsibilities and accomplishments and de-emphasize the titles. And remember that your resume is only one part of the job-search process.

That said, because it’s an important one, you do want to err on the side of caution with the information you include. If a company’s human resources department calls your current or former employers for confirmation of your work history, it’s generally looking for two things: your dates of employment and your title, making it a pretty bad idea to put down a position name that wasn’t actually bestowed on you.

Instead, make your resume about what you’ve done and what you’re capable of doing—avoid highlighting your actual title if you’re worried it’s going to knock you out of the running before you even have a chance to get dressed for the race.

Good luck!

The Answer to “Can I Change My Job Title on My Resume to Make it More Accurate?” | Stacey Lastoe via the Muse.

How to Survive a Stress Interview

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017

Stress interviews are a job-seeker’s nightmare—unless you’re prepared.

Everything is going smoothly in your job interview. But then you’re asked why a tennis ball has fuzz.

In another interview, your questioner treats you rudely before asking, “How do you think this interview is going?”

Should you run for the hills? Not necessarily. You’re likely experiencing a torturous technique called the stress interview. This method involves making an interviewee uncomfortable to see how he or she can perform under pressure. It’s especially prevalent in the tech industry.

Creative companies like Google and Facebook are famous for using stress questions. They want to see if potential hires are flexible and confident.

The bad news: stress interviews are increasingly common. The good news: the five tips below should help you keep cool.

Don’t sweat the details. Your interviewer cares less about how you answer a stress question than about whether you can stay confident. So concentrate on your attitude, not on the specifics.

Listen. Take time to listen to the question and fully understand it before you start talking. A question like “Before Mt. Everest was discovered, what was the highest mountain in the world?” is easier if you don’t rush. (Answer: Mt. Everest.)

Do your research. If you can, set up an informational interview with a contact inside the company to learn about the interview process and the company in general.

Be honest. Some stress questions test your honesty, such as “What interests you least about this job?” You can answer tactfully without lying: “I’m sure this job will have some menial tasks I won’t enjoy, like paperwork. But that’s part of any job.”

Own it. Even if your answer is a complete disaster, stay confident and secure in your choice. Your composure will make an impression.

Good luck!

5 Ways to Survive the World’s Worst Job Interview | Rose Cahalan via The Alcalde.

Keys to a Successful Sales Resume

Wednesday, May 10th, 2017

If you’re looking to enter the sales industry, or move up the ranks, or land a job with a great new company, your first task will be effectively “selling yourself” in your resume.

After all, if you can’t submit a convincing pitch or create an effective sales document, employers probably won’t take you seriously for even an entry-level sales job.

As great sales jobs are highly competitive, you will want to make sure that you’re putting your best foot forward. Here are a few tips for crafting a sales resume that will maximize your chances of landing an interview:

Show them the numbers

If you’re in sales, you know your numbers and how important they are. As you’re hitting your monthly quota and improving your company’s revenue, you understand the importance of impacting the bottom line. Don’t distract hiring managers with needless jargon. Instead, show them hard facts and numbers that tell a clear story about what you have achieved in your career.

Salespeople operate in quantifiable results, so make sure your resume reads the same way. For example, don’t say you generated $100,000 without saying whether that figure was above or below your target goal. While you need to use your numbers, you also need to be able to show them why those numbers are important.

If you’re entry-level, or simply new to sales, you may not have sales numbers to speak to, but you can still tell a story that resonates with the hiring managers. Focus on showcasing yourself as a numbers and results-driven professional by quantifying your past successes as much as possible. As an aspiring salesperson, your potential employer wants to know that you can bring the numbers, so show them that you’ve done this in your past roles and can do it again.

What makes you unique?

When you apply for any job, you need to make sure you shine. Mention any awards, certifications, selling techniques you’ve mastered, and experiences that make you uniquely qualified for the job. Instead of listing various achievements at the bottom of your resume for a sales position, be sure that the most relevant successes are front and center. Sales is about survival of the fittest and being the best man or woman for the job—don’t be afraid to show-off a little bit.

Keep it clean, clear, and accurate

Clean up your resume. Just as you’ll need to get straight to the point by showing recruiters your sales statistics and results, you also want to make your resume clear and concise. Cut out irrelevant details. Typos or formatting issues highlight an inattention to detail that could cost you a job. Meanwhile, you shouldn’t leave any inconsistencies or wide gaps in employment in your experience section. Even if you weren’t working in sales, include your volunteer work or jobs that could be relevant for the position you are applying for.

The pressure may be high, but be careful to showcase your best work without exaggerating your contributions. Results from a recent CareerBuilder survey of 2,500 hiring managers around the country showed that 56 percent of participants caught candidates lying on their resumes. Gray areas that qualify as lying include: inflated titles, incorrect attribution, and incorrect working dates. All of these inaccuracies could ruin your chances of landing the job so that you can begin closing sales at a new company.

Think outside of the box

Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box while drafting your resume. Sales is about going with your gut and taking risks—feel free to be bold. Tailor your resume based on each individual role that you apply for. Imagine you are the hiring manager as you’re finalizing your first draft. Be honest when you look it over and think about whether you would take the time to give it a second look. Of course, you should share it with mentors, former coworkers, and friends who can offer a fresh, critical perspective. Just as you’ll try to sell your clients on new products or services, you want to discover the best way to sell your own skills and experience to your next hiring manager.

One final thing to keep in mind: confidentiality. Many companies consider their sales strategies and performances confidential information. The threat of competitors finding out about company success strategies is very real, so be sure not to include any information that would compromise your current or past employers’ confidential information. You certainly can include information that is available to the general public (for example, stats found in an annual report or on the company Web site).

Good luck!

6 Résumé Tips to Help You Land a Great Sales Gig | Dave Yourgrau via Startup Institute.