What they, the Employers, really look for in Resumes?

cover letter to win  Having worn the shoes of a co-manager for decades, I have spent time hiring as well as, unfortunately, letting employees go. This wasn’t a role I had signed up for but was handed to me, during time of need. Resumes are a necessary evil in order to provide potential employers a significant glimpse into your life, in order for them to attempt to plug you into their organizations.

Sounds rather simplistic, yet when reviewing resume after resume, the decision to keep or reject resumes can be made as quickly as a blink of one’s eye. We’ve all written resumes in our lifetime; whether a school related project or while submerged in the working world. As we all know, there has to be a “catchy” something or other, that stops the reviewer(s) and makes them put your resume in the keep pile.

In the current Economy with high unemployment rates in the majority of states, the competition levels are bulging at the seams. Its not uncommon to see many over-qualified individuals applying for general positions, just to get a job and their foot in the door of organizations they’d like to work for. There are also a lot of under-qualified applicants vying for the same positions, just to be recognized and given a chance to prove themselves.

With my boss retiring a month ago, my 20+year position came to a close and I now find myself re-writing my resume. Trust me, it’s even harder now, especially with trying to remember all the details from your previous jobs decades ago. It’s a true twist of fate in that now I’m having to wear the shoe on the other foot, with being the applicant.

Enough rambling; what is the jewel of the resume? In my opinion, it’s about TEAMWORK!! Is not just about you anymore, as there are “many of you” applying that are very capable. It’s about how you work with others. My words of advice is to emphasize your involvement with a team; problem solving under duress/how you handle conflict and most importantly, how you work with others. If you don’t have history of working with a team, how about in your personal life with community involvement, such as helping coach kids teams, teaching classes at your church and/or organizing events etc.

Make sure your education and experience are well-organized/mapped out and lastly, make that cover letter sparkle by showing them who you are. Clearly state your basic philosophy of how you work with others and your vision of your proposed position in their organization. If you make it through to the interview, my hint to you, is to dress professionally and that doesn’t mean trendy. I wish all of you nothing but the best for your chance to shine!

 

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