At most companies, it only takes a quick glance at your resume to find a reason to screen yours out. Current job title/industry different than theirs, unemployment, self-employment, job hopping, short tenures etc.
Some people think their accomplishments or solid experience will be enough to overcome the process of elimination. That rarely happens and it’s a risky gamble.
What you need to do starts with recognizing that in job hunting, your role is salesperson and the hiring authority is a prospective buyer. Buyers want to know “what’s in it for me?” They know what’s in it for you. Therefore, you should tell them — in plain English.
What you should tell them is some of the things you can do to help them and their company reach their financial goals faster — as the result of your education and experience.
The most effective way to do this is via a letter that you should send directly to the hiring authority. You might consider sending it on high-quality stationary via USPS.
Do not include a resume unless you are attempting to make a lateral move within your present or most recent industry. If your message strikes a chord with them, their response may well be to ask you for your resume. If so, send one.
This strategy lets you get evaluated by the hiring authority, on the basis of factors that you have a good chance of being able to win on. You will be telling them what they want to know the most — namely, what you can do for them, and no one else will likely do that — and it’s also a good way to differentiate your candidacy.
Resumes put the focus on the past; a well-crafted marketing letter puts the focus on the future. Response to open positions attracts lots of resumes — some or many of which may have very relevant experience, but if you base your “case” on the advantages and benefits of your capabilities to help the hiring authority reach his or her goals, doing so could actually make you the competition and result in an invitation to interview.
The best-marketed person is who gets the job, and this strategy could help make you be that person.
Tom Kellum is a job hunting consultant, helping people's dreams come true since 1987. He specializes in providing a personal job-landing service based on proven marketing strategies and methods. For more information, email him at email@example.com or visit www.careerkeysman.com
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