Are you wearing a pair of thongs, a grubby pair of shorts and a torn t-shirt??? A seemingly strange question to ask in relation to employment…. yet that is what many people do when applying for jobs.

When planning to meet someone important, most people will dress up for the occasion to make a good impression. Just like an important meeting, your resume is the first contact that a potential employer has with you, and you only get one chance to make a positive first impression. I am continually amazed at how many people don’t realise what is at stake when they present a poor quality resume and accompanying cover letter. It is like turning up to meet that VIP we talked about earlier in a pair of thongs, a grubby pair of shorts and a torn t-shirt. And who in their right mind is going to do that? A potential employer is a Very Important Person to impress – they have the power to make decisions that can literally change your life.

I’ve spoken with managers of employment agencies who told me they’ve had jobs in mind for specific people, but wouldn’t submit the resume they were provided with because it would not reflect well on them. One in particular asked the jobseeker to change the focus of the resume slightly to highlight their skills and experience relative to the position’s criteria.

The manager could hardly believe her eyes when the resume came back the following day virtually unchanged. That jobseeker missed out on a job she was well qualified for, because she insisted on wearing her thongs, shorts and t-shirt, when she could have, with not a lot of effort “put on some much nicer clothes” so to speak, and been seriously considered for a very suitable position. Strangely enough, a good resume was not a priority, Go figure! Until next week…

 

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