Resume Horror Stories- What NOT To Do When Applying

There are several advice columns on how to write a good resume or target the job you want. These outline great ways to make your resume stand apart from the rest. However, on occasion, candidates go above and beyond the usual standard, and not in a good way. Here are some resume pitfalls to avoid. While they may seem like common sense, they all have actually happened!

  • Inappropriate samples– Design or writing job openings often require samples, and in general any marketing focused print or web copy or web/graphic design samples work perfectly. What to avoid: 100 page novels sent as a “sample” attachment that are riddled with profanities, photo-shopped pictures of yourself in scantily clad clothing, and amateur cartoon illustrations. It’s also best to send web links that are appropriate enough to not be blocked by corporate firewalls.
  • Desperation phone calls– Resumes are tools to secure an interview. A follow up phone call telling the hiring manager “My resume doesn’t show my experience which is why I need to come in and meet face to face” will most likely rule you out of the running. Other unappealing phone calls include “My fiancé told me to get a job, so I thought I’d apply” or “I don’t have any marketing experience, but it can’t be that hard right?” When you do make a follow up call, keep it professional and focus on the status of the job in question, or any additional materials that may be required to make a decision.
  • Resume photos– Resumes don’t require a personal photo, but some candidates choose to include a professional picture of themselves in addition to their job qualifications. If you do choose to add a photo, steer clear of facebook profile pictures. You want your resume to be a professional representation of yourself, and not insight as to what you like to do on Saturday night

Hopefully the above points are fairly obvious job application pitfalls to avoid. When applying for open positions it is paramount to present your most professional side to hiring managers, whether it be the samples you send or your follow up phone call. These tips should aid in steering your job application process in the right direction.

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