Tag Archives: resume advice

What Doesn’t Kill you Makes you Stronger

6 Oct

Article Title: What Doesn’t Kill you Makes you Stronger
Author Byline: CareerAlley
Author Website: http://CareerAlley.com

That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

Have you ever seen someone’s career take a really bad turn for the worse? Not by imploding (you know, committing a crime or something stupid like that), but things suddenly not going well. Missed deadlines or responsibilities that are not met. This may happen over a period of time. Everyone else notices but (seemingly) not the person it is happening to. It may have happened to you (or not). There are so many things that are outside of our control, new bosses, new direction, companies not doing as well, mergers, down sizing, and the list goes on. Often, in retrospect (but rarely while it is happening), we can see what really happened. Where did we go wrong? Why didn’t we fix it? What would we do differently? No sense dwelling on the past. Everything that happens to you in your job and career (good, bad or indifferent) is part of the path that will lead you to your next opportunity. Whether that opportunity exists where you currently work or elsewhere. And, as the title of this post indicates, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

  • Picking Up The Pieces When You Find Yourself Jobless – This article, from Vault.com, provides some great advice for moving on after losing your job (no matter what the reason). Most of the steps focus on what to do from the moment you are told to severing your ties cleanly. That last step, sometimes the hardest, is your final walk out the door and what you will say to your now former coworkers. While you are on the site, take a look at the other great job search resources with the links at the top of the page
  • I lost my job, now what? – Posted by yours truly, this is one of the first posts by me on CareerAlley. There are the initial stages of recognition when you lose your job (not dissimilar to losing a loved one). But, once you’ve taken the appropriate amount of time (and it is different for all of us), it’s time to get back on that horse. When you lose your job, your full time job is now finding another one and you must approach it in that way. The article then goes on to list the seven steps for finding your next job. This is my favorite post and forms the basis for so much of what is included on CareerAlley.
  • For Job-Hunting Success, Develop a Comprehensive Job-Search Plan – A comprehensive 10-step plan from Quintcareers.com, this article provides 10 steps to creating a great job search plan. Each step (such as make the time, reflect on what you want, etc.) provides a great overview along with embedded links to related information including creating the basic tools in your Job Search Marketing Toolkit. There are additional tabs at the top of the page for Students, Job-Seekers and Career Changers. Additionally, there are related links on the top left hand side of the page.
  • The Riley Guide: How to Job Search – One of the best sources on the Internet for job search, the Riley Guide has what seems like the answer to every job search question and resource you may need. This particular page is subtitled “Job Search Guidance”. Starting with a list of advice and advisors (with embedded links) and following with guides and articles and the list goes on. The “hidden job market” and “online search” are also included. This is a great place to put together the plans for your search.
  • 5 Ways to Not Feel Overwhelmed By Your Job Search – Looking for a job can be very stressful, especially if you are out of work and have been looking for any length of time. This article, from careersparx.com, has a short list to get you blood pressure back to normal. Tips such as “do one thing every day” and “make a list” are just two of the basics that should become a regular part of your routine.

Good luck in your search.

Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.

How To Disguise A Checkered Work History

15 Aug

Article Title: How To Disguise A Checkered Work History
Author Byline: Cathy Eng, CARW, Owner of Resume Rocketeer, Inc.
Author Website: http://www.resumerocketeer.com

Many of us have, even through no fault of our own, had a bumpy work history. This may be due to lay-offs, illnesses, temporary contractual work, staying home to raise children, career transitions, or a myriad of other situations. You may have perfectly legitimate reasons; however an employer may not understand why you have short tenures or gaps between jobs – they just want the best candidate for the job.

But have no fear! There are some ways to format your resume so that employers notice your excellent skills and qualifications rather than circumstances in your past. It starts with functional formatting, which means bringing your skills to be beginning and expanding on them, and moving your simplified work history to the end, which downplays your work chronology.

How exactly does this work? Here are the parts of a functional resume:

Introduction: Start with a career summary that gives an overview of your strongest selling points, including unique skills, certifications, corporate awards, etc. This immediately catches the eye of the reader and draws them in. You may also choose to include a list of relevant keywords and a personal branding statement in your introduction.

Summary of Skills: This is where a work history might traditionally go. However, your strengths lie in your skills rather than your work history so displaying a detailed, categorized breakdown of those skills is a great use of space. For example, if you’re a retail sales manager, you may choose to break your skills down into sales and marketing, leadership, retail planning and purchasing, and operations (HR, accounting, etc.). It’s important to be specific here; listing generic skills wastes space and bores readers.

Work History: Use this section to simply list your job title, company name, location, and dates of employment for each job you’ve held. Don’t draw attention to this section by expanding on each job. You may also choose to leave dates off of positions you held more than 10 years ago as they lose relevance after that amount of time and indicate candidate age.

Additional Sections (education, certification, affiliations, etc.): It is important to place these features carefully according to your situation. IT professionals may choose to list their technical certifications at the beginning of the resume. Recent graduates may opt to do the same with the education section. Either way, I would recommend leaving one of these sections at the end of the resume so as not to stop with your broken work history, which ends the resume on a sour note. No matter the order you choose, be sure your skills and qualifications outshine your job chronology.

While this method is a great alternative for those who need it, it is by no means perfect. Recruiters and hiring managers are well aware that candidates use a functional format to hide questionable work circumstances. Therefore, it is important to be prepared to address your work situation. But don’t dwell and give excuses; keep it positive and focus on your skills rather than your past. And remember, you are not defined by your work history!

Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.