In case you missed it, I recently began a daily series of posts on LinkedIn, the Letter of the Day. Quick and useful tidbits of information to help you in your job search. At the end of each week, I will compile a synopsis for the blog.
January 9th– The #LetteroftheDay is “F ”as in Fabrication.
A little white lie on your résumé never hurt anyone. Everyone does it. What’s the big deal? No one will find out.
Starting any relationship with a lie, no matter how small, is not the way to ensure a long and prosperous relationship. Don’t lie about your salary history, education, dates of employments or accomplishments. Employers are smarter than ever with the use of AI and social media. It’s not worth the risk!
January 10th– The#LetteroftheDay is “G” as in Goals.
As a career coach, I encourage my clients to work through a goal setting exercise every quarter. As a professional, most people want to make more money, work fewer hours, travel less, get promoted, etc. but do you know why you want to do these things or how to get them? If your long-term goal to become VP of Sales but have travel less, is that really a realistic goal?
Defining your goals can be a great way to really identify what is important to you and develop an action plan to take you where you are looking to go.
January 11th– The #LetteroftheDay is “H” as in Hard Worker.
Is your résumé littered with cliché phrases such as hard worker, team player, people person, self-starter, or results-driven? If so, you may want to rethink your strategy. What exactly does being a hard worker mean? Isn’t everyone? What makes you different? What is your value proposition? Show me through your results what you are capable of.
January 14th– The #LetteroftheDay is “I” as in Illegal.
Some topics that are illegal for employers to ask about are your marital status, children, national origin, age, disabilities, and religion. This information should not be listed on your résumé either.
In the past, I have seen résumés that have included a “Personal” section that includes someone’s date of birth, how many kids they have, homeowner status, etc. Leave this information out completely—it is not needed and can only serve as a basis for discrimination.
January 15th– The #LetteroftheDay is “J” as in Job.
Your résumé is not a chronological list of every job you’ve ever had but rather it is your book jacket – a career highlight reel that provides readers with a snapshot of the value you can bring to their organization.
Listing every past part-time job only serves as clutter and takes away from the content that employers want to see: your accomplishments.
January 16th– The #LetteroftheDay is “K” as is Kaleidoscope, a constantly changing pattern or sequence of objects or elements.
As a kid, I used to love to play with my kaleidoscope. It’s pretty neat for an 8-year old to see the ever-changing colors and patterns. The world around us is constantly changing, whether it be at home, at the office, or with our friends and family.
The dynamics in the workplace change on a consistent basis, which is one reason why you should be ready with an updated résumé at all times. Even if you are not actively seeking a new position, your position could be eliminated, or a recruiter could call with a can’t-miss opportunity. Be prepared for change at a moment’s notice.
January 17th– The #LetteroftheDay is “L” as in LOL.
Texting has become a generally accepted form of communication in the business world and especially in recruiting. Applicants are 4 times more likely to respond to a text than an email. More and more recruiters are using texting to reach job seekers.
Keep in mind that while texting is a quick way to correspond with a hiring manager, there is still a certain level of professionalism and decorum that you need to maintain. The next time you are texting with a business contact, remember to leave the emojis and acronyms for your friends and family.
January 18th– The #LetteroftheDay is “M” as in Malleability, the quality of something that can be shaped into something else without breaking.
Regardless of the job that you are applying for, it will benefit your candidacy if you can show the interviewer examples of how you have been malleable or flexible and how you have been willing to change course in necessary situations.
Some examples of workplace flexibility skills include:
- Offering to cover the responsibilities of a colleague while she is on vacation
- Offering to work extra hours during a year-end crunch
- Pushing aside the work planned for the day to respond to an emerging problem
- Tailoring a sales pitch to the unique needs of a customer
- Volunteering to change your schedule to accommodate another employee’s needs
During an interview, tailor your responses to show examples of how you’ve been flexible at work.