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Be Specific to Find a Job Quicker . . . . . or, A Rambling Resume Doesn't Help!

When it comes to finding a job, being specific about what you want to do gets your further faster.
The more specific you are . . .  the better.

Too often I see resumes from job seekers that show a whole lot of experiences in a wide array of jobs, education, training, and accolades.  These ramble on frequently for multiple pages - 5 or 6 or more. 

Or, when I ask a job seeker what they want to do in their next career move, they say something like: “I’m open.  I can do lots of things.”  Well, while that may be true, it doesn’t help focus in the listener or reader’s mind what you, the job seeker, could do for an organization. 

A rambling resume or answer doesn’t help because:
    (1)  It doesn’t provide clarity about what job you could perform. 
    (2)  It doesn’t tell a recruiter or interviewer where you might fit in their own organization.
    (3)  It doesn’t tell a network contact, who has taken their time to meet with you, who they could
           refer you to in their network.

The Fallacy in thinking -- "They’re looking for me"
I think a big part of the problem comes back to the mistaken belief that “They’re looking for me.”  I’m here to tell you, they’re not!  With 100s, if not 1000s,  of resumes to sift and sort through, they are not looking for you –   just a way to get through all the submissions to find a few qualified candidates whom, it appears, can do the job they are trying to fill.

They’re not looking for you
It is a mistaken belief to think that . . .”if I just show that I can do lots of things, they’ll find me.”   A nice thought but the truth is that recruiters and hiring managers just don’t have time to look for ways to use your talents, experience, and education. 

●  Unfortunately, the rambling and non-focused resume just gets put aside. 

●  And, a networking contact often just leaves the conversation in frustration: they don’t know where to direct you amidst their array of contacts.  In other words, they don’t know how to help you.  A direct quote from a referral to a member of my network came back in frustration in a call back to me: “I couldn’t help him. He didn’t know what he wanted to do and I really couldn’t help him!”

The Solution
Do your homework.  Focus your marketing tools  –  your resume, “L”vator speech, marketing letters  – on what you want to do, and back these materials up with examples of you performing aspects of the job or role well.  Make it easy for recruiters, interviewers, and network contacts to help!

Seek assistance.  If you can not do it alone, seek help. 
    - Talk with a trusted colleague who can help you see your strongest capabilities through their
    - Take some career assessments.  
    - Attend a workshop on how to find a job. 
    - Work with a job search / career transition coach. 
    - Use the AJC – Career Strategy website to find guidance and information on how to search for a job, and use the Contacts feature to ask questions.
    - And/or do some serious soul-searching about what you want to do and what experiences you have had that you can use to prove your point!

Ironically, the more focused you become, the more opportunities open up. Your chance of success multiplies.  Finding your focus is an important step to finding that next job . . . . . quicker!
For additional information on marketing yourself and your capabilities, please refer to the many articles found under the Articles tabs of the AJC–Career Strategy website.
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