Late last night just as I was finishing up work, I received the following email:
I am one of many students studying a Bachelor of Commerce degree and in my last year. At the moment I’m struggling with numerous job applications to win a 2010 grad position.
I was reading your article “Spinning a Line on your Resume”. Your 10th tip included handing the resume details over to a professional resume writer. I am just a little cautious in doing this as I have a fear that the so-called resume writer could write the same resume, using the same template or style for a lot of other graduates, thus defeating the purpose of making mine stand out from the crowd. If you have the time, could you PLEASE recommend a professional resume writer for me? I would really appreciate it.
Here’s my response:
Usually I don’t respond to emails — not within five minutes anyway. God knows I need my beauty sleep, but you’ve caught me with a nice email, so here goes:
I think the best bet is DIY, but remember that no one ever scored a job from a resume alone (playboy bunnies aside). I get hundreds of emails when I look to employ someone, but I rarely read them — they’re essentially for sorting (the bad ones hit the bin).
So if I were you, I’d look at some unconventional ways to get a gig.
By going straight to the top.
First, take a look at the job you really want.
Next, find out who the directors, the CEOs and the head honchos of the company are. Invariably, successful people are involved with numerous associations and charities. You can find out which ones by looking at their corporate bios. After you’ve finished your investigations, go and offer your services. Here’s the thing, all charities are crying out for young people to join and lend some of their time, enthusiasm and expertise.
Three things can happen:
1. You’ll get to apply the skills you learnt at university which will give you something to put on your resume.
2. You’ll get some Karma credit; most charities are being squeezed right now their donations have fallen away with the economy, while at the same time the demand for their services has increased.
3. You will meet leaders of industry and the community. These people have extensive contacts. It’s called high-level networking.
CEO walks past his HR manager:
‘Amanda there’s a young woman I’d like you to meet. Her name is Chloe, and she works at the Fitzroy Community Foundation a few days a month. The board sings her praises — nothing is too much trouble (and god knows we need all the help we can get). I think she’d be excellent working with Clive in marketing’.
Chloe, believe me, these conversations happen every day. And when the HR manager calls, I’m guessing she’s not going to be the slightest bit interested in your resume.
Tread your own path!
And don’t forget to pay yourself first – check out my money management plan for more.