Everybody wants an edge in the job market. That much is for certain. However, how many people have an edge, but don’t use it . . . mainly because they don’t know they have it?
Obviously, when it comes to your resume, there are certain things that it should include. Among these things are educational background and professional achievements.
However, if this is all your resume includes, it probably won’t be enough to set you apart from other job seekers who are looking for a better employment opportunity.
With that in mind, below are five things to put on your resume . . . that you might have forgotten about:
1. Certifications or designations—Do you have a certificate or license in your chosen field? This will lend additional credence to your educational background and professional accomplishments, further illustrating your competency and validating your candidacy.
2. Related experience—This includes anything that might be relevant to what the company is looking for in a potential new employee. Have you traveled extensively? Visited foreign countries? Operated heavy machinery? Be thorough in the analysis of your past.
3. Other areas of talent or competency—Do you speak more than one language? Do you know sign language? Morse Code? How to survive in the wilderness armed with only a knife and a pack of matches? The point is this: don’t dismiss any of your abilities as not being applicable to the situation. A talent is a talent.
4. Stints in the military—If you served, list the branch, the length of your service, your rank, and any special training or medals that you received. If you did serve in the military, that all by itself will help to set you apart from other applicants.
5. Other indicators of success and achievement—Any success that you’ve earned during your life is worth mentioning, even if it doesn’t relate directly to the position for which you’re applying. Did you put yourself through school as a single parent? Did you win a contest or competition? Were you recognized for your prowess or achievement in some other area? Don’t rule anything out.
You should always be looking for ways to set yourself apart from the competition, and you never know what will make you more attractive to a company. You could think something is no big deal, but it might be something in which a hiring official will take a special interest.
So don’t leave anything of value out of your resume. Don’t shortchange yourself. Make sure that your resume contains anything and everything that will convey the value you bring to any open position for which you apply.
The face-to-face interview does not afford candidates very many opportunities to make a mistake. This is an important part of the hiring process for companies, and they put quite a bit of stock in everything that candidates do—and say.
Unfortunately, in some instances, hiring officials aren’t looking for a reason to hire you as much as they’re looking for a reason NOT to hire you. That’s because if there are a lot of applicants vying for a single position, it’s easier for them to reduce the candidate pool by “weeding” out those that they think don’t belong in the pool.
One way in which they do this is by listening carefully to what candidates say. All it takes is one misstep or one unfortunate phrase, and officials will mentally disregard your candidacy. At that point, your chances for getting the job are lost.
Below are six things you should NOT say during your next job interview:
1. “What exactly does your company do?” You should know not only the complete description of the job for which you’re applying, but you should also know what the company does overall and how your job fits into it. Expressing ignorance of these facts will only serve to show company officials that you’re not the right person.
2. “How much does this job pay?” This question shows that you’re focusing on the wrong priorities. Instead of focusing on what you can do for the company if hired, you’re already asking what the company will do for you. That’s not a good way to illustrate the value you’d bring as a new employee.
3. “How much vacation do I get?” This is similar to the question posed above. You haven’t even been hired yet, and you’re already thinking about the days you’ll be taking off? Your candidacy has just been dismissed.
4. “My current boss is horrible.” There’s no context in which this is a good thing to say, including if the interviewers ask why you’re looking to leave your present job. It just proves that you prefer to passively place blame on others instead of proactively explaining your desire for better employment.
5. “I hate my job.” Once again, speaking negatively about your current situation is only going to work against you, no matter how dire that situation might be. Companies want employees who have a desire to make the best of ANY situation, not a desire to complain and “pass the buck.”
6. “My biggest weakness is that I work too hard.” You might think that this is clever, but rest assured that company officials will not be impressed. They want a real answer to the question of “What’s your biggest weakness.” If you answer with this response, they’ll think that your biggest weakness is that you’re flat-out full of baloney.
Have you ever said any of the above phrases during a job interview? If so, did you get the job? Chances are extremely high that you did not.
During your next face-to-face interview, choose your words carefully and avoid at all costs the six phrases listed above. Instead, fill your interview with the type of dialogue that will move you one step closer to convincing company officials that you’re the right person for the position.
Time Staffing Inc.