Free Resume Training – Section II
What’s in This Section
- Who Is Your Student?
- Resume Research
All right, let me tell you, I’m a firm believer that in order to really, really laser target your resume so that you’re going to get that interview, you have to actually do a little bit of research and tailor that resume specifically for the company that you’re sending it to. So what we’re going to talk about in this section is, who is your student?
Remember in the first section we talked about creating your resume, not as a marketer or a promoter, but as a teacher, you’re instructing the person that’s reading that resume and trying to teach them about you. In order to do that effectively, you need to know who your student is and you’ll see why in just a minute. Then I’m going to show you some resume research that you can do that will help better prepare you for being able to actually get that interview.
Who is your student?
This is the first thing that we’re going to look at. I want you to think about if you were a math teacher, would you teach math the same way to kindergartners and high schoolers and college students? No, you wouldn’t, and here’s why, it’s all math, it’s the same basic topic, right? But each one of these groups of individuals has a different capacity and the kind of math that you’re going to relate to them is going to be different.
So you could be a professor that is capable of teaching all levels, but you’re going to have to make some adjustments if you’re teaching kindergartners and then you’re going to have to switch into a different gear to teach college students. All these students have limitations and you have to deal with that. Well, the hiring manager, they have limitations.
They have a capacity as well, just like these different students have. So you would not just create a resume, like you wouldn’t just blanket teach math, you have to figure out what category they’re in and tailor it to them. Now, not that one hiring manager is going to be like a child and another is going to be like a college student. That’s not what I’m saying. But they do have different capacities. They are limited by a lot of different factors.
So you have to study your student and know exactly who it is that you’re writing to, who are you trying to teach or who is your student, and resume research that you will want to do. You want the reason that we’re doing this is? It’s because you want as few surprises as possible. So if I can do a little bit of legwork beforehand and figure out some things that are going on so that when I actually get to that interview or when I make a phone call and I talk to somebody, I’m not going to be hit from the blind side and not have any idea what happened.
So you want as few surprises as possible because ultimately there will be some. We just want to try to eliminate as much as we can. So to do that, there’s three things we’re going to do. Internet research, personal observation, and a phone call.
Let’s look at Internet research. This is actually really simple. Just go to google and use google news. That’s a great tool, type in the name of the company and just note anything that’s there, read it all. Find out if there’s something interesting, whether it’s good or bad, this is a good thing to do for a lot of reasons.
Maybe for example, something real bad is going on with the company and you really don’t want to work there. It would be good to find that out before you go through all this rigmarole. Right? Or maybe something bad happened that you happened to be an expert in and you could’ve prevented it.
That would be real good to know because you could put that on your resume, a similar issue that you dealt with where you prevented something like that. So being as informed as possible about that company is really a good idea. What motivates the company? You can tell by looking at the news and maybe they even have a news section on their website, things that are going on with the company.
You can see what they’re motivated towards. You can also see what direction they’re going. Find out what terminology they use when you go to their website, if they have a website and most big companies, but go to their website, look at what kind of terminology they use in reference to their role in the industry. See if they possibly have job postings.
Maybe you can even find the position that you’re looking for and see what kind of terminology they use. What do they call your position? If you’re an educator in your little circle of terminology, they may call it a trainer or they call it a workshop leader or whatever. Find out what they use because that’s what you want to use on your resume.
When you submit it, find out what they’re doing and focus on it. The more that you know, the better. What I’m saying is not to not be everything to all people. That’s not what I’m talking about. What I’m talking about though is anything that you can see that they’re going towards, that they’re motivated about.
If there’s something in your history, in your past, that would follow along and fit in with that really good, that’s what you want to hammer on obviously. Remember your job here is as a teacher, so you have to teach them how your qualifications, your experience, how that matches up with what the company is doing, personal observation, discover information that you can use for your resume.
And I have to totally leave this up to you because there’s a lot of ways that we can do this. Perhaps they have some place that you can actually visit, something that’s somewhat public, if there’s certain things going on on the Internet that you can find out about them. Maybe somebody made a video on youtube about them, whatever. Just find out some information that you could use on your resume.
What you want to do is kind of like, do I want to say maybe a book report? I’m just taking notes of all the information that you find on them. Then at the end, when you’ve compiled, you’ve done all your research, describe your impression, just do it in a few paragraphs. Describe the company in your own words as far as what you feel they’re doing and what they’re going through, and then you’re going to pull from that, summarize everything you’re going to pull from that as you create your resume specifically tailored to them.
The Phone Call
That prepares us for the last little bit of research, which is the phone call. Now this, I know everybody gets freaked out. This can be uncomfortable for a lot of people, but this is a very, very critical step because in fact, it’s the most important. You’ll see why here in just a minute.
This is what’s going to separate you from the other 50,000 resumes that are trickling through their office. This is what’s going to put your name out there. And this is what’s also going to allow you to do a whole bunch of your own research. You might find out that you don’t even want to work for these people. And it’s important to do that at this phase and do it with a phone call. That’s the best way to interact with people.
Ask for the hiring manager. Chances are you’re not going to get through to them because these people are usually pretty busy. You might get transferred to HR or something like that and you might just have to talk to somebody. Whoever you get ahold of, that’s fine, deal with them, but asked for the hiring manager.
Then you want to try to get your name in front of these people three times, once on your cover letter, once on your resume and once in this phone call because this phone call you could very well hang up and they could contact HR or something and say, look, this resume is going to be coming, and I’d like to see it as soon as it shows up.
It’s that important. Plus, this is a way for you to have almost like a subconscious thing for them, to have your name in their mind. If you’ve dropped your name to them, and they actually received the resume, that’s going to be like, oh yeah, this is what I want to look at because I talked to this person on the phone.
We’ve got three goals that we want to accomplish on this phone call. Find out what kind of person they’re looking for and a lot of times that’ll be a little bit hard to do. They’re not going to just come out and tell you in two sentences exactly what kind of person they’re looking for. You want to kind of feel it out. Find out how you should submit the resume. They might say mail it, they might say email it, they might say fax it.
My recommendation to you, if they say you can mail it or email it, I would do both, and make sure you get the exact person that you should send it to. Give them an overview of how you could help them. That’s the third goal of this phone call is that you can give them an overview of how you could help them. You want to try and do that fairly briefly, unless the conversation just totally opens up.
Phone Call Outline
But in fact what I’d like to do is give you kind of an overview of how this phone call needs to go, and just take this as an outline. This is not like a verbatim, you’re not reading from a script or anything like that, it’s just an outline to kind of keep things where it’s constructed pretty good. In fact, a good idea is to just take this outline, commit it to memory even right down the outline so you can check things off or whatever, but practice this on somebody like a friend and practice going through this thing.
First of all, we’ve got the greeting, then we’ve got an introduction. And the reason that it’s good to have these little steps in here, things that you might think, well, of course I’m going to say who I am, but you might get really nervous and you might forget and that’s the point of this.
So greeting, introduction, identify the job that you’re going to be applying for, or that you’re seeking information on, mention to them where you found out about the opening. Tell them you’ve got a quick question. Ask them if this is a good time or should I call you back at a different time? But just that you’ve got a real quick question to clarify something. And by all means, when you’re on the phone, write down everybody’s name that you talk to a no matter what, because you might be able to use that later on.
So that question, how do you do that? Well, you want a quick question that they’re going to be able to answer in a pretty short, simple statement. So for example, ask them for an explanation of the job. Ask them what essential skills are needed. Hopefully they can tell you specifics like you have to be able to use Powerpoint or you have to be able to use AutoCad or you have to be familiar with accounting, any of that kind of stuff.
You just want an explanation in their own words about the job. If you can start a conversation with them, by all means do so. If they don’t seem to be in a real hurry, then keep them on the phone and keep communicating with them.
I will say this, in order to come across as a very friendly person, what you should do when you’re talking on the phone is smile to them, like they can’t see you. Right? And you’re thinking, ah, well that’s stupid. I shouldn’t smile, nobody can see me. Yes, make yourself smile and when you do that, just like I did it right now (on video training), it makes you sound more pleasant.
It makes you sound happy and excited and you think just smiling does that? Yes it totally changes everything about the way you sound. I just switched back to not smiling (on video training) and you can tell. So just do that on the phone and it will come across to them. That will give you a positive impression of you.
If your skill set does not match, in other words, if I find out that I’m not really matched up for this job, then walk away. One of the things that you’re wanting to relate to them is that, look, I don’t want to waste anybody’s time. I want to find out if this is something that I’m interested in doing and if my skill set matches it, if it does, we want to proceed and if it’s not, let’s go ahead and stop it right here.
Assuming that it does, you want to ask them right there for an interview and ask them how they want to get the resume submitted.
Now, during this whole interaction, you want to take notes of any terminology that the hiring manager used or if it’s an HR person, whoever it is that you’re talking to. The reason is, if maybe on the website, ad from a recruiter’s office or on a job website, somebody that may have posted that job doesn’t necessarily have the familiarity that the hiring manager does. Maybe they just use a different set of terms and they were told to post a job and they went and they did it.
The hiring manager is the one that you want to go with, so if you pick up that they use different terminology then you want to note that. Now you don’t do that on the phone, you don’t want to change your terminology because it’ll sound kind of unnatural.
What you do want to do though is when you create the resume, that’s when you’re going to sprinkle in their terminology and do not forget to say thank you, and by all means be very professional. Don’t be casual, Mister and Mrs. is totally appropriate when you’re at this phase.
Review of Section II
Now is it the job for you? Does your skill set match? Be honest with yourself, there is no reason to get yourself stuck in a job that is not going to be something that you’re happy with and that you can’t perform effectively. Do you really want to work there?
Find out about these people, find out about the job, find out about the environment, the work environment, everything that’s going on there. You make that decision really with what I am giving you in this resume course, you’re going to be able to be somewhat selective.
It’s not like you have to just take the first job offer that you get. You can be selective because you’re going to get more interviews. Basically, if you do your homework and you do everything that I’m telling you to do here, you’re going to get a whole lot of interviews.
So don’t just rush out and grab hold of the first thing that comes along. Remember that the hiring manager, the people in HR or whoever it is that you’re talking to, they’re really busy. Don’t just keep them on the phone for no reason.
Make sure once you find the information, if they’re not interested in having a conversation then just say thank you very much. I just wanted to make sure I didn’t waste anybody’s time.
If you are interested in the job, you let them know. Say it sounds really exciting and I would like to get an interview. How would you like me to submit my resume? Thank them up and down, be real friendly and happy.
- The New Job Market
- Resumes Are a Teaching Tool
- Resumes Must Meet the Need
- Resumes Must Be Truthful
- Who Is Your Student?
- Resume Research
- Where Does Your Resume Go?
- 10-Second Scan
- 30-Second Scan
- Hidden Agenda
- You’re a Teacher
- You’re Not Going to Lie
- You Have Only a Few Seconds to Make Your Impact
- Are You Ready to Write?
- Contact Info