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Unless you are being recruited by a family member, friend, or close acquaintance, every single hiring manager will want to look at your resume before they call you in for an interview. I cannot stress enough how important it is to have a cover letter accompany your resume EVERY SINGLE TIME you send it in and to make sure that it's tailored specifically to the job you're applying for. Think about it from a hiring manager's point of view. They can receive hundreds of applications for a single job position that they need to fill in just a short amount of time. On top of their regular job duties, they need to sift through all of the applications and find the top 5% to call in for an interview. It's just not possible for them to look at every single person's application. So what do they do? They narrow down the field by using the easiest and fastest tool they have - first impressions. Let's relate this to a different topic - sports. You're a coach and need to "recruit" the best players possible for your team… You're coaching a soccer team and need to pick 15 members for your squad out of a potential 100 and you only have 2 hours to do so. It's impossible to take a good look at every single player's skills in only 2 hours, so you need to quickly narrow your search before you can study the players further. In order to do so, and without knowing anything about the players, you're going to rely on your first impressions to make the first cut. Take a look at the players standing before you - are they all wearing proper soccer attire and equipment? Do they look excited and enthusiastic about being here? Think about it - if there's someone dressed in a soccer uniform and cleats and another one wearing jeans, a t-shirt, and sandals, one of them definitely appears to be more interested in joining your team than the other. Building on that, and only considering first impressions, one looks a lot more capable than the other. While there may be a hundred explanations for this difference, it really doesn't matter when you have a limited amount of time - the ones who don't look interested are not going to make the first cut. Consider the above situation and think about it from a hiring manager's point of view. You have 50 applications before you and you need to call 5 people in for an interview. You have a limited amount of time to decide, so you need to eliminate some applications quickly. What can we see without even reading the details of each application? Some have cover letters along with the resume and some do not. The applications without cover letters are a little bit like the people showing up to soccer tryouts with jeans and no equipment. They make a terrible first impression - they don't appear as interested as the other ones, so why should anyone bother with them? Applications without cover letters are always the first ones discarded. The presence of a cover letter shows a genuine interest in a job position because you actually took the time to write it. The current economic climate is not exactly one that is overflowing with jobs; it's not like companies are hiring for the sake of it. Make sure you show a hiring manager that you have taken the time to merely write a letter to show your interest in their job position. If you don't bother showing an interest in them, the hiring manager will have no interest in you.
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245
Executive resume writing
Resume writing
Resume writing tips
The best way to market your career for employment is through your resume. It is your first point of contact and first impression, and in today's society first impressions count! If you want to get noticed and to leave an impact, your executive resume needs to be written perfectly and professionally. In accordance with the human resources experts, there are five basic concepts on how to write the executive resume. An executive resume must be able to market your skills and highlight your qualifications and experience. As an executive, it is expected that you are able to perform the duties and responsibilities. It is also expected that you have the experience in this type of role, and therefore simply listing your basic duties is not enough to stand out as an executive. The executive resume must focus on the intangible skills that you can bring to the job and it needs to reflect your visions and skills. Before you sit down to write your resume, imagine that you are the person reading it. So, this implies that you need to put yourself in the shoes of an employer. For every job application, your resume needs to be targeted and directly written towards the job you are applying for. If there is a great emphasis on leadership, then the executive resume needs to highlight leadership examples and areas of your past work history where you displayed leadership, supervision and managerial expertise to lead and guide employers. Using examples and quantifiable numbers will aid your resume. Rather than a broad statement such as "exceeded sales targets on a monthly basis", turn this statement into an accomplishment statement that uses evidence to back up the statement: "Exceeded sales targets by 25% over a 12 month period while working in highly competitive markets, leading to an overall increase in expected revenue by $100,000" The ten steps in drafting the perfect executive resume Step 1: The first step is to read through the job vacancy profile and begin to draft job objectives. Of course, they must be responsive to the position you are applying for Step 2: Identify what knowledge, skills, and experiences will suit the job position best Step 3: Create a shortlist of your qualifications and experiences that will reflect your suitability for the position Step 4: Draw from your past experiences and search for accomplishments that prove you can effectively perform the job responsibilities Step 5: Elaborate on your brief accomplishments that emphasize your abilities in handling the position you are applying for. It is also very important to emphasize how your work has benefited your previous employers Step 6: Prepare your work history in chronological order, emphasizing your achievements. Concentrate on areas of how you added value to that positions (increased profit, reduced costs, implemented a new proposal, increased accuracy, project work, employee development, leadership initiatives, awards and recognition). Step 7: Don't forget to list your educational qualifications, especially those that are relevant to the position. As an executive you have probably completed relevant training courses or leadership workshops that will further aid your resume application Step 8: Presentation is crucial and the key is consistency! Step 9: Target your resume with relevant information that will aid you in getting the job. At the executive level, the hiring manager is looking at your overall history - the tangible and intangible elements that make you an executive who can lead the business forward in a positive way. As mentioned previously, employers are looking for more than just work history when making personnel decisions at the executive level Step 10: Don't forget to use strategic keywords throughout your resume and even include 10-12 keywords to highlight your key skills. Examples of strategic keywords include: Strategic & Tactical Planning, Relationship Management, Employee Development, New Business Development, Team Building, Training and Mentoring, Client Vendor Relations, Account Retention, Lead Generation, Presentation & Negotiation.
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266
Top 100 most powerful resume words
Resume writing
Make my resume stand out
In today's society your resume is the most important document you have to get yourself an interview. Including power resume words will increase your chance of getting hired by 80%! When a hiring manager is seeing the same old resume time and time again which includes the cliché words and phrases such as "highly dedicated individual" or "great team player" you are guaranteeing yourself that your resume will be deleted. Poorly chosen words and clichéd phrases can destroy the interest of the reader. Power words when chosen correctly can have the opposite effect of motivating and inspiring the reader Power Resume Words will make help you stand out from your competition and increase your chances of getting hired! Top 100 Power Resume Words Advanced, Assigned, Assessed, Absorbed, Accelerated, Attained, Attracted, Announced, Appraised, Budgeted, Bolstered, Balanced, Boosted, Bargained, Benefited, Beneficial, comply, Critiqued, Closed, Collaborated, Designed, Delegated, Demonstrated, Developed, Detected, Efficient, Enhanced, Excelled, Exceeded, Enriched, Fulfilled, Financed, Forecasted, Formulated, Generated, Guided, Granted, Helped, Hosted, Implemented, Investigated, Increased, Initiated, Influenced, Integrated, Innovated, Instituted, Justified, Listed, Logged, Maintained, Mentored Measured, Multiplied, Negotiated, Observed, Operated Obtained, Promoted, Presented Programmed Provided Projected, Qualified, Quantified, Quoted, Recommended, refine, revamp, reacted, Retained, Recovered, Reinstated, Rejected, Sustained, Skilled, Saved, Scheduled, Supported, Secured, Simplified, Screened, Segmented, Streamlined, Strengthened, Triumphed, Troubleshot, Taught, Tutored, Translated, Trained, Uncovered, United, Unified, Updated, Upgraded, Validated, Viewed, Worldwide, Witnessed
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311
Instant resume killers
Resume writing
Resume mistakes
Want to cause a recruiter to toss your resume instantly? When an employer is faced with several - possibly hundreds - of applications, he or she will try to narrow this list down quickly. Making one of the following mistakes can get your resume tossed in just a matter of seconds. No cover letter attached This is not a good start to any job application. Failing to include a cover letter instantly means that you have failed to put in that extra 10 minutes of effort, and this is never a good thing. A lot of recruiters delete their first round of applicants simply because they have not included a cover letter. Applying for the wrong job It happens all the time - candidates get so caught up in applying to as many jobs as possible that they accidentally send their resume sand cover letters to the wrong people. When a recruiter sees that a cover letter has been accidentally addressed to the wrong company, it will get tossed immediately. A bad picture on a resume (especially an inappropriate one) It's true that different resume standards apply to different countries. That being said, some countries are more accepting (and encouraging) of pictures on resumes than others, however please stick to professional-looking photos only - you are applying for a job after all. There is no need to include a picture of yourself posing in a tank top or drinking with friends. Better to stick to no picture at all. Providing little to no details about your work experience Employers want you to be as specific as possible with regards to your qualifications, and therefore you should provide an adequate amount of information. I can't tell you how many times I've seen people list their job titles ONLY under "work experience", and that will just not cut it. Once an employer sees that you've provided little to no detail on your experience, they will immediately delete your resume.
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232
Building a strong relationship with your boss
Career management
In the work place
No one likes a "suck up" or a "teacher's pet", but let's be honest - staying in the manager's good books at work is important not only to keep your job, but for your long term growth. It is highly unlikely that your boss will push to promote you or give you a pay increase if he or she does not like you. It does not seem fair, but this is just the way it is. Learn from your boss Generally speaking, your boss is probably more experienced than you, which is why they're in a position of management. Take time to learn from your boss by asking questions. Don't be afraid to approach them. In most situations, he or she will be happy that you are seeking them out for advice, and in return will be more willing to take the time to help you out. Be honest with your boss If you make a mistake with your work or you've done something wrong, don't try to lie or cover it up. In the long term this can only come back to hurt you. Approach your boss and be honest. Explain the mistake you've made and let them know how you're going to fix it. Nobody is perfect and no one expects you to be perfect. Honesty is the best policy. Your boss will also respect you more for being honest from the beginning rather than trying to hide your mistakes. Don't have an Ego Nobody likes an egomaniac. Lead by example through your actions rather than your words. No matter what job you do or what industry you're in, the best workers always lead by example. Don't take credit for other peoples work Taking credit for other peoples' work is a big no no. Not only is it dishonest, but sooner than later your boss will find out. In the meantime, your co-workers will begin to lose respect for you, which can severely hamper your chances of one day being in a situation where you become their boss. Being a good team player means acknowledging co-workers when they do good work and encouraging everyone to put their best foot forward. Build a positive relationship with your boss not a false relationship Just like you, your boss is only human. Yes they may have more responsibilities, but they still experience and share all the same human feelings as you will feel on a day to day basis. You do not have to be best friends with your boss, but you need to respect them and value their time. Do not try to constantly flatter them. Your boss is no fool and will quickly realise what you are doing. This can severely hurt your relationship as you will lose credibility, and in certain circumstances this can lead to them either disliking you or not taking you seriously. In conclusion, a positive relationship with your boss and co-workers will make for a happy and healthy career. We spend so much of our lives at work that it is important not just to stay on our managers good side for promotion reasons, but also to ensure that we achieve maximum satisfaction from our jobs.
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This month's top rated article
How to handle the telephone interview (and reach the face-to-face interview stage)

So you've found an ad for your dream job and submitted a thorough and thoughtful application. What's next?

If your application makes it through the screening round, the process of securing the job is likely to involve a series of interviews, initially on the telephone, followed by a number of in-person, face-to-face meetings. Many people underestimate the importance of the initial telephone conversation: the recruiter's goal is to determine your suitability for the role, so if you don't make a great first impression, you're unlikely to proceed to the next round of interviews.

Most of the time, you'll receive a phone call from the advertiser (this could be a Recruitment Consultant or someone from the company's HR/Recruitment team). There's usually no warning of the call, so be prepared to shift into interview mode quickly. If you happen to miss the call, it is common courtesy to return the call promptly (which is also likely to help your application).

While the phone interview is relatively informal, this is still an interview. A few points to consider:

1. Be proactive. You could consider contacting the advertiser proactively - either from the details in the advertisement or through your own research into the company. This leaves no doubt about how keen you are about the role. Not all advertisers encourage this approach, particularly for roles which are likely to attract a large volume of applicants. Be prepared to be told to apply online and don't be overly pushy if this is the case.

2. Don't rush. You won't be judged for taking the time to consider the question and answer it properly. Stay calm, composed and think your answers through. If you've reached this stage, it means the recruiter genuinely wants to understand who you are and discover why you're suitable for the role. This means that even if you have a lot to say, the recruiter is unlikely to hang up on you and you don't need to worry that you're wasting their time.

3. Be direct in your answers. Being cagey or not giving the full answer doesn't help your cause. Remember that you are competing with other candidates and will likely to be asked the same questions as they are. Listen carefully for clues about whether your answer is on the right track. For example, if the recruiter needs more detail or is confused about your response, she may try to ask the same question in a different way.

4. Listen. As the saying goes: "You have two ears and one mouth. Listen twice more than you speak."

The conclusion of the call will usually be close when the questions end, and either a description of the role or being asked if you have any questions comes up. Simply enquiring about the next stage or a couple of questions about the role itself (team size, how this position fits into the team, etc.) will also be a good way for the interviewer to determine how keen you are and serve to leave them with a good impression. Both of which are key in hopefully securing your first stage interview.

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Popular questions
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Should I have an objective statement on my resume? Are there other ways to make my resume stand out from the crowd?

Replacing the Objective Statement with a Qualifications Profile on your resume

Does your current resume begin with a generic objective statement telling the reader what type of jobs you are looking for? Let me guess that it reads something similar to this:

"I am seeking the opportunity to expand my skills, knowledge and experience in a challenging professional environment. I am honest, reliable, eager to learn and open to tackling a range of tasks. I am a strong and empathetic team player and always complete tasks to a high degree of quality and to deadlines"

If this is how your resume begins, it's time to make changes. In the competitive job environment where hiring managers may receive upwards of 500 applications for a single position, an objective statement is more likely going to lead to your resume being deleted. From a hiring manager's perspective, they are not interested in a non-specific, all-purpose statement that adds no value to the resume and provides them with no reason to want to hire you. You may have the best skills and be the perfect fit for the job however, you may never get this opportunity because your resume has already been deleted.

What is a Qualifications Profile?

A great way to introduce yourself on your resume is by creating a qualifications summary or career summary. Rather than telling the reader you are seeking an opportunity to expand your skills, rather promote what skills you actually can bring to this specific role. A targeted resume including a targeted profile will encourage the reader to continue reading the resume as opposed to pressing the delete button. For example, if you are applying for an IT job that requires programming skills, list you're programming skills within your introductory profile. That way, the reader will straight away be interested to read on as they know that you have skills that are required for this position.

How long should my Qualifications Profile be?

The last thing you want to do is turn your qualifications profile into an essay! Statistically, a hiring manager will only spend between 15 to 20 seconds when initially reading your resume. If they open your resume and see a half page profile they are more likely to be turned off as they won't be bothered to read all this information. A well written profile should be no longer than 2-4 sentences. It needs to be targeted and present value.

Final thought:

When you begin to write your new resume, don't forget the number one rule. Your resume is a marketing document. The more you can showcase your skills and achievements the greater chance you will have of being selected for the interview stage.

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