The Tipping List
Land That Job
Three tips to stand out from the pack
By: Samantha Gendler
Brand yourself. You’re marketing yourself to a perspective employer, so help them remember you. Create an identity and stick with it. Whether you use a simple monogram, color scheme or logo, be sure all your materials match. Your envelope, resume, cover letter, business card and any other samples you’ve brought with you should be cohesive, and look like they belong only to you.
Burn a PDF portfolio. E-mail often screws things up. It’s up to you to make sure the hiring manger gets your materials formatted how you intend them to look. If they can’t open your document correctly–maybe they have a different version of Microsoft Word–they aren’t going to ask for a cleaner copy, they’ll move on. Create a PDF (Portable Document Format) of your resume so your documents will be viewed just how you like them, across multiple computer platforms. Your interviewer will be able to pop this disc into a computer, and you can talk them through it while they browse.
This is also a great place to get creative. In addition to your resume and cover letter, insert anything else into the PDF portfolio that could help land you the job. Writers can scan published clips, Web designers can insert screenshots of sites they’ve created, and dog walkercan include photos of happy clients. The possibilities are endless. Close the slideshow by providing your contact information.
Show a skills-based resume. Lots of people are stuck creating very old-fashioned resumes. Yes, your employer cares about your various degrees and where you went to school, but what they really need to know is what you can do for them now. Bump up your best skills to the top – you’re in control of what they read first. Don’t follow outdated templates if they aren’t working for you. Your perspective employer is going to care much more about what you can do, as opposed to what you have done at other jobs. Just like you would on a date, make your best assets known first.
Tell us: What are some creative tips you’ve used to land a job?