Perfecting the résumé

Our next professional development event is Preparing for Your Career.  Susan Barr, from Wayne State University Career Services (link, pictured above) will present a workshop on résumé building as well as what WSU Career Services can provide us as students.  The résumé  is a great form of personal branding we discussed at our second member meeting.

We are all used to providing résumés to our hopeful employers but each of us has a different structure.  Some strengths, some weaknesses.  Monday’s event will benefit us greatly as we continue to submit our résumé to prospective employers.

However, when we send out our résumé, are we considering what we are sending and to whom we are sending it?  In 2008, U.S. News & World Report posted reasons why résumés typically get thrown in the trash.  These are interesting because as we continue, or begin, the process of sending our résumé, are we considering the following?

  • Cover letter is clearly in the form of mass-mailing –  As students, we are probably guilty of this.  We need to pay attention to the details of what company we’re sending to and know the position that is posted.
  • E-mail displays your name as “Sexy Mama” or similar ilk – Some of us still have these goofy, unnecessary e-mails from our past.  Professionals seek other professionals or those who desire to become professionals.  This type of e-mail address doesn’t cut it.
  • Résumé or cover letter have spelling errors or typos – As communication majors, this should not be an issue, but it is.  Proofread, proofread, proofread before sending.  Or, have a fellow student or friend provide a second look before submitting.  “my objektives and goles is to be come a good public relashuns praktishuner” is FAR from professional. (And a bit of an overkill example, nonetheless.)
  • Résumé has an objective unrelated to the position available – If you’re applying for a position in the communications field, your objective should not say you’re seeking a finance position in the healthcare field.  We need to research the company and position available then construct an objective that fits that position we’re qualified for.
  • The position requires a special type of experience not listed on the résumé – Know your strengths and know your weaknesses.  If you clearly have never Tweeted in your life or never desired to create a Facebook page, a social media position may not be the prime spot for you.

These examples may seem amateurish, but if we find ourselves quickly putting something together, small details – unbelievable mistakes – may get overlooked and we, too, will be overlooked.

Monday’s event will fine tune our résumé and set us a step above our competition.  Check out our Facebook page for details.  Otherwise, we’ll see you Monday, Oct. 25 at 10 a.m. in the Faculty Administration Building, room 1139.

Posted by Thomas Roy, VP of Communications Wayne State PRSSA

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