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Writing Powerful Resumes ? 10 Golden Rules
Your resume is your sales letter. It may not get you the job. But it must get you an interview. The resume should be written to arouse the interest of the employer so that you get your appointment for an interview. This is the primary purpose of a resume. Here are ten golden rules to follow in creating a very powerful resume.
1. While writing a resume you should keep in mind that it is written with the purpose of getting a specific job. This will focus your resume on the requirements of the job and then match your experience and abilities to fulfill the requirements of the job.
2. A powerful resume will be concise and to the point. Care must be taken not to include anything that comes to mind and it is not essential to include everything about you. It is not your autobiography. Every line, every word needs to be evaluated whether they are highly relevant to the job description. You only have few seconds to impress the employer. Within those few seconds you must convey what you do and what are your credentials for the job.
3. A powerful resume starts with an Objective statement. The objective statement should be simple and straightforward. It should state preferably in one or two short sentences the position you are applying for and how you will benefit the employer. The resume must be tailored to the job description. While it may not be possible to write a resume for every job, it is desirable. Otherwise have several resumes with different objective statements.
4. Use plenty of action words in designing a powerful resume. Action words make your resume more interesting, make you look more dynamic.
5. While qualifications are important, employers are looking at applicable skills every organization needs. These skills are Teamwork, Leadership, excellent Communications, Interpersonal skills and Computer skills.
6. Focus on accomplishments and not on duties and responsibilities. Every responsibility must state your accomplishments to make the resume more powerful. Words like 'responsible for' or 'duties include' sounds very dull and passive. Emphasizing on accomplishments sets you apart from the crowd and chances of an interview increases dramatically.
7. To create a powerful resume ensure that there are no typographical errors, miss-spelt words and grammatical mistakes. A badly proofread resume is the surest sign of carelessness and lack of professionalism and an eye for details. So keep checking your resume often. It is better to have it checked by your friends or colleagues to detect any mistakes which might have escaped you.
8. Make your resume very reader friendly. Have professional summaries, bulleted lists and very short paragraphs. Use more white spaces by spacing paragraphs properly. Don't use all capitals, too many highlights with bold letters. Anything over 12 points and using all caps is the equivalent of shouting.
9. Always consider the perspective of the employer while creating a resume. Powerful resumes are one which the employer is immediately able to relate to his needs, job descriptions and requirements.
10. A well designed resume must include all possible ways to reach you. Ensure including your full address, your home phone, mobile phone and e-mail ids. Please include a day phone or your direct phone at the place of work if available.
A powerful resume includes all these elements. Just use this as a check list to assess your resume. This alone will improve your resume many fold and make it highly powerful.
R.G. Srinivasan is a Certified Trainer, Writer and Author with more than two decades of managerial experience. He also writes a regular blog on home-business resources which you may check out at http://www.home-businessresources.blogspot.com for online marketing tips, resources, opportunities and online promotional strategies
Writing Great Cover Letters
Cover letters are an essential ingredient to your complete résumé package. This is the best opportunity for you to demonstrate your personal character, knowledge of the company and your business writing skills. The following is a relatively generic format for creating your cover letter. Note that most cover letters are designed to target a specific company or at least a specific industry. First Paragraph You must spark the employer's interest. Focus on your unique characteristics, whether they are based on experience or personal traits that will benefit the company. Don't simply restate your résumé objective statement. You must command attention, not simply alert the employer that you are applying for a position (they already know that!). Second Paragraph Provide more detail about your professional qualifications or relevant educational background. Highlight your professional accomplishments and/or achievements, not responsibilities. Use active verbs when describing things that you have done and back it up with a statistic or concrete fact when possible. Tailor this paragraph to the position that you are applying for. Third Paragraph Demonstrate knowledge of the company, their industry, and the challenges that they may be facing. This is where you connect what the company needs in an employee and the skills that you bring to the table. You want to implicitly show your knowledge of the company without regurgitating something you read on the company's website. Alluding to general industry trends that are affecting the company will let the employer know that you can see the big picture and how your position affects the company's strategy. Fourth Paragraph This is the final paragraph of most cover letters. You should demonstrate your confidence and enthusiasm in working at the organization. Be sure to include a call to action, requesting an appointment with the decision maker (using the word appointment over the word interview helps make you sound more confident and professional). It is also recommended that you alert the employer that you will follow up with them, usually one week after sending your résumé package.
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