February 4th – The #LetteroftheDay is “X” as in Exit
The way you exit a company can be more important than the work you performed for the last decade working for that employer. The last impression you make will often be what sticks in someone’s mind after you’re gone. Of course, handling yourself professionally and working out an appropriate notice are assumed. Here are a few other things you should do as you exit a company.
- Ask for letters of recommendations, or better yet, recommendations on LinkedIn. Don’t wait until you need them—people move around and get busy.
- Ask for copies of your performance evaluations (you should already have these).
- Save a copy of your most recent job description. 10 years down the road, you may need that information and your memory won’t be as clear as it is today.
- Gather any performance metrics or emails you may want to have before you submit your resignation. You could be shown the door immediately and lose access to that information.
February 5th – #LetteroftheDay is “Y” as in Yellow
Colors, like yellow, bring out strong emotions in our daily lives. Yellow represents sunshine, hope and happiness. How about using color on your résumé? Yes!
Using color on your résumé can help make your résumé look attractive and easy-on-the-eyes. It can help emphasize the areas of the résumé you want to draw your readers attention to. Additionally, it can help your résumé stand out from the crowd.
When selecting a color, consider your industry, audience, and personality. Blue is traditional and conservative, ideal for finance, while green would be perfect for a biologist. Bright colors like orange can be distracting, while lighter colors tend to get lost against a white background.
February 6th – The #LetteroftheDay is “Z” as is Zero
When preparing your résumé, having zero errors is not a goal, it is a MUST!
In recruiting, I would constantly see résumés from Assistance Mangers or Costumer Service Reps. If you are being considered to run a $5M/year business, spelling your job title correctly might be a good place to start.
Bottomline – Proofread, proofread, proofread! Have several sets of eyes review your documents and then proofread again. As a résumé writer, if I didn’t have my proofreader I’d be in trouble. Thanks Bonnie. 8 )
February 7th – The #LetteroftheDay is “A” as in Accomplishment, the successful achievement of a task
Most people go through their careers and don’t stop to think of the benefits they bring to their employer. The fact is, you don’t keep your job because you show up to work and look good. You bring value to your employer. You make a difference!
So, why is it difficult for some people to determine what their accomplishments are? Here are 2 reasons I hear most often:
- “I don’t like to brag about myself.” Understandable, but preparing your résumé is the time to brag on yourself. Give employers a reason to want to hire you.
- “I never thought of thatas an accomplishment.” We get so busy performing our jobs that we don’t stop to think of our impact on our company. Have you generated new revenue?Cut costs? Improved process? Created a new system? Increased employee morale? Been selected for a committee? Won an award? These things matter! Document your successes weekly.
February 8th – The #LetteroftheDay is “B” as in Branding
You often hear the term “personal branding”, but what does that really mean? Personal branding is the practice of people marketing themselves and their career as a brand. It is essentially the ongoing process of establishing a prescribed image or impression in the mind of others.
Corporate America has long understood the concept of branding. McDonald’s, Starbucks, Anheuser-Busch, Amazon, and Apple are just a few companies that have clearly defined brands. If someone mentions McDonald’s, it brings up a certain connotation, good or bad, but you know exactly what you are getting.
When defining your personal brand, what can you do different or better than others in your field? A reader of your résumé should be able to easily identify what your brand is. Are you a turnaround expert? Training master? Sales builder? Messaging is essential to help you stand apart from others.