Do You Have A “Tombstone” Resume?
While most people think of resumes as employment histories, today’s resumes are marketing tools designed to sell you (the product) to a potential employer (the buyer).
They are not boring lists of responsibilities. They are not a place to document everything you do on a day-to-day basis. They don’t include every job you’ve ever had or every single thing you’ve done during your career.
That style of resume is sometimes called a “Tombstone” resume because it focuses on the past, not the future.
To be effective, your resume needs to highlight the skills and achievements that make you valuable to potential employers.
What Future-Focused Means
The days of getting a job based on your experience or job title alone as long gone. You may think managing a $MM budget or having executives reporting to you is impressive. But, on it’s own, it’s not.
How To Take The Nightmare Out Of Networking
You’ve probably heard about the “hidden” job market. It’s really not some secret place where the jobs are. It’s about the number of jobs that get filled through referrals. And that’s why career professionals talk about networking. Contrary to popular belief, that’s not simply making connections on platforms like LinkedIn, it’s building relationships with people who will think of you when they hear about a job that might interest you.
While job boards have their place, spending all your time applying to jobs online isn’t practical. Neither is expecting recruiters to contact you, even if your LinkedIn profile and other social media profiles are compelling. .
While 65% of recruiters use Linkedin to source candidates, according to the 2021 Jobvite Recruiter Nation Report other platforms have gained popularity. Facebook came in at 68%, Instagram at 46%, and YouTube at 35%. The report also notes that recruiting on TikTok is on the rise.
The majority of recruiters (53%), however, noted they found the highest quality candidates on LinkedIn.
Just remember, recruiters don’t work for you; they work for the employer. They are online looking for candidates to fill specific positions. More precisely, they are looking for a square peg to fit into a square hole. If you are a round peg, you’re out of luck.
Breaking the Barrier of Implicit Bias- Understanding and Overcoming It
Are you concerned about biases and discrimination?
Despite laws and regulations, discrimination of all kinds is out there.
If you’re looking for a job, the employer might think you’re too old, too young, or too diverse, or not diverse enough.
Or a potential employer or client might not hire you because they don’t feel like you’re a good fit.
There’s something about you that they don’t like. Maybe something they can’t put their finger on.
Of course, they might feel an instant connection to you, and the uncomfortable feelings might be yours.
So I want to share something I learned about as a recruiter.
Resume Not Getting Results? Time To Turn Your Boring Employment History Into A Marketing Tool
Do you send your resume out just hoping for the best?
Do you share it with friends with the caveat that you just threw it together?
I’ve looked at thousands of resumes. Many potential clients I talk to today think their resume is “not too bad, probably needs a little tweaking.”
When I look at their resume from the perspective of a personal brand strategist and former recruiter, I see a resume that’s rubbish.
Long boring lists of duties and responsibilities, highlighted as achievements.
✔️ Developed and managed marketing campaigns for key clients . . .
✔️ Managed organizational functions for the largest global . . .
✔️ Worked closely with leadership on corporate communications . . .
Time to change that.
Are You Using LinkedIn To Your Best Advantage? Probably Not.
LinkedIn provides many opportunities for you to sell yourself to recruiters, employers, and potential clients.
But LinkedIn is only a tool. It’s up to you to use it to your best advantage.
Unfortunately, most people don’t use LinkedIn’s features to their best advantage.
When it comes to your profile:
🔹Does it have LinkedIn’s default Profile Banner?
🔹Is your Headline your current position (LinkedIn’s default)?
🔹Do you have 1 or 2 paragraphs in your About section, maybe talking about your employer?
🔹Do you ever comment on anyone’s posts, let alone write your own?
If you haven’t updated your Headline or written your About section because you don’t know the parameters and character counts LinkedIn supports, now you have no more excuses.
Make It Easy For Recruiters To Say Yes To You
Most recruiters and hiring managers are sourcing candidates on social media, particularly LinkedIn. In fact, 53% of recruiters said they found the highest quality candidates on Linkedin when responding to Jobvite’s 2021 Recruiter Nation Survey. This is great news if you have a robust, optimized LinkedIn profile.
As a recruiter I spent hours on LinkedIn sourcing candidates, often scrolling through 500+ possible matches. Some were easily eliminated due to missing or inappropriate photos. My all-time favorite unsuitable photo is the woman wearing a wedding gown, veil, and all.
Potential candidates fell into 2 categories:1) Yes, contact them immediately and 2) they might be a possibility. The one thing that consistently moved candidates from maybe to yes was if it was easy to contact them.
The point is, don’t make the mistake of thinking if recruiters want to contact you they will track you down or use an InMail. Unless they think you are a perfect candidate, they may not. You can increase your odds by making it easy for them by including contact information on your LinkedIn profile.
Can You Answer This Key Question?
Some people go into interviews and wing it. Others prepare ahead of time. Usually this includes researching the company and planning responses for commonly asked interview questions.
Questions like “what is your management style?” and “where do you see yourself in 5 years?”
But, there’s one key question they often don’t prepare to answer.
“Why do you want to work here?”
When I was recruiting, I always asked candidates if they knew anything about the company. The smart ones would tell me a few things they learned while researching the company. Things they liked, that made them want to work there.
The unprepared would say “no” and leave it at that.
Recruiters Don’t Work For You
I get a lot of questions about recruiters. The most often asked question is who the recruiter works for. The short answer is the recruiter isn’t working for you.
While, someone who’s out of work recently told me it’s cruel to say this, it’s true.
Retained and contingency recruiters work for the one who pays them. And that’s the employer.
Retained recruiters are paid a fee to find candidates and are generally paid whether the employer hires them or not. Contingency recruiters are paid only if the employer hires one of their candidates. Their fee is a percentage based on the candidate’s first year salary.
Want To Know What A Company Is Really Like?
Every job seeker knows they need to sell themselves to the employer. That said, remember that interviews are not only about the employer; they are about whether or not you want to work for them.
Preparing questions to ask the interviewer is as important as preparing responses to typical interview questions.
Start with a few questions about the job. A good place to start is asking about things that were discussed during the interview, maybe things that you would like clarified or explained.
Here are a few questions to learn what you’ll be stepping into if hired.
=> What are the biggest challenges of the job?
=> What are the expectations for my first 30,60,90days?
=> What are the biggest obstacles I’ll face in the first 30,60,90 days?
Beyond learning about the job, an interview is a good time to learn about your future boss and the culture.
The Biggest Holiday Job Search Myth
Despite our seemingly 24/7 business culture, most job seekers think you can’t find a job during the holiday season. Even looking for work from Thanksgiving to January 1st is widely considered a waste of time.
This is a big holiday myth.
I say that from personal experience.
In 2006, when I was still working in corporate, my phone rang just as I arrived home from our company’s holiday party. Although I had applied for a few positions, I was shocked to find that someone from HR at one of them was calling to conduct a screening interview.
The conversation went well and a few days later someone else called to set up a face-to-face interview with the hiring manager. The interview was scheduled during the week between Christmas and New Year’s.