Archive for Resume/Cover Letters

Here is my latest YouTube video where I talk about changes I recently made to a client’s cover letter and the three critical things you need to keep in mind when writing yours.

Hallie Crawford
Certified Career Coach

Camera, lenses and filters 1As a recent grad you may not have years and years of experience in your chosen field.  How do you create your application materials, resume and cover letters, to reflect the potential you have?

1)  Look at all the experience you do have – whether its professional experience you were paid for, volunteer experience, college club and group experience, etc.

2)  Instead of just looking at the title you held, take a look at the skills you gained, the responsibilities you had, and the true day-to-day tasks you completed.

3)  Make a list of how those relate to the positions you want to be offered.

4)  Now include those skills, responsibilities, and talents in your resume and cover letter.  This is how you tailor your application materials to the type of position you desire, instead of having a static way of describing an experience the same way for lots of different types of jobs.

5)  In your cover letter especially, highlight what you’ve done in your various experience that relates to the job you’re applying for.  Even if this wasn’t specifically in your job title or job description, but was something you did and relates to the position you want, definitely highlight it.

Don’t let your lack of work experience hold you back from describing your ability and potential in applications.  Be willing to see your previous experience through many different lenses and you will see how you really DO have relevant experience to offer.

Darcy Holoweski
Certified Career Coach

P.S. Are you in the ideal career for you? Find out if you’re in the right career with our Ideal Career Quiz.

ResumesCareer coaching clients often ask me, what do I think of resumes and cover letters, are they still necessary or are they becoming obsolete? And what about online resumes or webpages to showcase your skills?

Resumes and cover letters are still a must. I think over time they will be delivered or provided in a different format. (Think LinkedIn or online resumes). But they’re not going anywhere. They are still a must. If the company says do not provide one or the other, follow their instructions. Both are still very important though.

Including a cover letter is important because 1) it shows your writing skills and how well you communicate and 2) it demonstrates you care enough about the position to write one and you are able to speak about your skills related to the position confidently. So even if they don’t ask for a cover letter, provide one. As an attachment – not in the body of the email. Err on the side of more formal and professional unless your field calls for something else more creative or different (marketing or advertising for ex).

Online resumes are becoming more popular. I think it’s nice to have one. It’s not a must but it depends on your industry. If you’re in technology, go for it. If you’re in a more traditional field you can get away without one, but consider it as a way to stand out from the crowd. Here’s a website I like for online resume examples:

You’ve read about people who created YouTube videos for job applications as well. These days it can seem like anything goes but that is not entirely the case. Consider these two things when you are deciding what to create for yourself:

1) What’s appropriate for your industry but will still help you stand out.

2) Ensure whatever you do is professional, tasteful and well done.

Creating a video or online resume just for the heck of it, and only doing a halfway decent job, doesn’t cut it. It’s better to skip it altogether.

Hallie Crawford
Job Coach

P.S. Are you in the ideal career for you? Find out if you’re in the right career with our Ideal Career Quiz.

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KeyboardThese days I have career coaching clients that ask me frequently if a cover letter is still necessary. I say absolutely, unless the employer specifically tells you not to include one. It shows your ability to communicate and that you’re interested enough in the position to write one. Include it even if you’re uncertain if it’s necessary. Err on the side of providing it.

Also, you need to be sure you cover yourself in your cover letter. Sometimes people use a standard or template resume or cover letter to apply for all the jobs they’re considering. It’s okay to use a template, but remember, always tailor each resume and cover letter to each job. Don’t use the same one for the same position even if you think it’s a similar job. Take the time to make sure that yours speaks to the position, and to what the company is looking for.

One thing that you should always do is back up the claims that are in your cover letter, on your resume as well. Your cover letter and resume should go hand in hand. Don’t treat them as separate items. If you say you possess a specific skill, or have experience in an area or industry relevant to the job, make sure you back that up in your resume. Be careful though, because you don’t want your cover letter to be a carbon copy of your resume. Make sure you refine the information in your resume and explain in greater detail how your experience or skill set brings value to the position at the company you’re applying for.

If you’d like more help with your cover letter or resume, contact us today for a complimentary consultation.

Hallie Crawford
Job Search Coach

P.S. How do you know if your resume is good? Take this Resume Quiz to find out how to keep your resume out of the trash can.

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Work ProjectsI was excited to be featured in this recent career article on the Work Reimagined website, How To Pick Projects That Will Boost Your Career. I wanted to share a couple of additional thoughts with you:

1) Diving into something new to boost your talent in your career, or beef up your skills, is also a good way to network. You can meet new people in the firm that you may not have, or clients you’re working with who you haven’t interacted with before. This can increase your list of networking contacts in this new area of skill for you.

2) Remember to mention what you accomplished on new projects in your resume and on your LinkedIn profile. We often don’t update our resume for years if we’ve been in the same position for a long time. Keep your resume fresh. Make a task to update it every 6 months so you don’t forget anything. Updating your resume doesn’t mean that you want to leave your job. You can also use these stories or examples in a performance review. It helps you remember to keep track of your performance.

3) Be willing to say “No” as well. If a project isn’t going to directly boost your career and may end up being a drain on your time, say no and be confident with that decision! Realize your time is valuable and that you want to spend it on productive activities.

If you’d like more help with your resume, contact us today for a complimentary consultation.

Hallie Crawford
Career Coach

P.S. How do you know if your resume is good? Take this Resume Quiz to find out how to keep your resume out of the trash can.

Watch my latest video where I discuss how a resume is your first impression with a prospective employer or a networking contact. You need to make it count! There are many forms of resume services out there. In this video I share why I believe our resume services stand out for 3 reasons.

Hallie Crawford
Certified Career Coach

Check out my latest video as I share the top 3 mistakes that my job search clients make when in the throes of their search. Listen in, don’t let this be you! Make sure you are on top of your game with these 3 pieces of career advice.

Hallie Crawford
Atlanta Career Coach

Resume Services

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 Hallie Crawford
Ideal Career Coach

P.S. How do you know if your resume is good? Take this Resume Quiz to find out how to keep your resume out of the trash can.

Ideal Career Quiz

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