Resumes, Cover Letters, Interviews

Cover Letters and Resumes allow you to illustrate to a potential employer that you are the best fit to their posted job description. You must be strategic in what content you include. You can determine the way an employer perceives you based on the information you provide.

Resumes

Your resume is often the only picture a recruiter has of you, your abilities, and your accomplishments.  Recruiters typically spend 20 seconds or less scanning a resume.  You need to pack a lot of (carefully crafted) information into that 20 seconds, using the best possible format, to make sure the recruiter adds your resume to the "follow-up" pile. Each resume you submit should be unique to a specific job lead.

Cover Letters

A cover letter introduces you and your resume to potential employers or organizations you seek to join (non-profits, educational institutions, etc). and serves as a bridget between your resume and the specific job for which you are applying. This the first document an employer sees. Take advantage of this important first impression and prepare the reader for your application, stating why you are writing, why you are a good match for the job and the organization, and when you will contact him or her. There is NO one-size-fits all cover letter.  A cover letter is a reflection of your writing skills, so your document should be succinct, interesting, and error-free. 

Cover letters do more than introduce your resume, though. A cover letter's importance also includes its ability to:

  • Explain your experiences in a story-like format that works with the information provided in your resume
  • Allow you to go in-depth about important experiences/skills and relate them to job requirements
  • Show the employer that you are individualizing (tailoring) this job application
  • Provide a sample of your written communication skills

Interviews

Below are basic tips regarding pre- and post-interview activities:

All interviews have some basic similarities which include a warm-up, gathering and offering information, and a closing. Below you are introduced to and provided with information regarding the differences between different types of interviews, as well as given sample questions for you to practice and sample questions to have in preparation to ask your interviewer:

Advice about your contact information & social media:

  • Your email address include your name and no other personal information (like birth year) or silly references...
  • Your outgoing phone message should be professional, giving your first and last name...
  • Your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube pages should be set either set to private (for social sites) or updated with professional photos and information (for professional sites)...

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