If you’re a job seeker, you’ve probably read eleventy-billion pieces of advice about what you MUST and MUST NOT do in your resumes, cover letters, and interviews.
How can you possibly remember all the rules? You know what? Relax.
No one can remember ALL the rules, and not every rule applies in every situation, anyway. So take in all the advice you can stand, use what works for you, and ignore the rest.
And if you’re still nervous, ponder these truths, which I have learned along my own checkered career path. In no particular order:
- The majority of people have lousy resumes, so even a not-quite-perfect one can stand out.
- A well-written cover letter can get you a job despite a weak resume, and a strong resume can get you a job despite a wimpy cover letter.
- Life happens to hiring managers, too. They’re human. They understand things like gaps in a resume or time off for family responsibilities.
- The most likable candidate will get the job, all things being reasonably equal. So be nice.
- It’s nerve wracking being the interviewer, not just the interviewee. If you come prepared and make it easy for your interviewers, they'll like you. (See #4)
- Almost everyone has been fired or laid off at least once. You're not the only one.
- Most people don’t send thank-you notes after an interview, so you should. It's an easy way to differentiate yourself.
- One company’s rejected candidate (i.e., you) is another company’s dream come true. Keep going.
- Hardly anybody stays unemployed forever.
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