Jared Reitzen is CEO of MobileStorm, a Los Angeles firm which provides digital marketing services. He regularly blogs on his Entrepreneur Success Blog, sharing his observations and opinions on the entrepreneurial life.
You want a job? Then stop sending crappy resumes. Being an employer for a decade now, I have seen every type of resume you can imagine. I really like to interview everyone even if it’s for 10 minutes. I like to make sure that person fits within our culture (while lowering the risk of a lawsuit because of our wonderful, politically incorrect organization).
Every time we try to fill a position, I feel that the majority of people either a.) aren’t really looking for a job but are just sending their resumes to see what is out there or, b.) don’t have any self-esteem and feel that they are one of a thousand applicants and there is no way they can get a job, so why bother to send a polished document. Here are five tips to make sure someone reads your resume and calls you in for an interview:
1. Attach a Cover Letter: Far too many people simply email you their resumes and there is nothing in the body of the email, just a Word doc attachment. It’s as if the applicants are just sending their resumes to as many people as possible, and they don’t have time to write a quick intro on themselves and why they want this job. I can tell you right now the only time I review coverless-letter resumes is if I am not getting a sufficient number of applicants; otherwise, they are trashed. Showing your personality and thoughts on the position goes a long way. Also, most executives are reading your resume on their blackberries. Can we open Word attachments? Yes, but it takes 15 seconds; reading the body of the email does not. Entice us with a beautiful cover and then hit us hard with a good story.
2. Do Your Research: A company wants to see that you have researched their website, studied their business model, and know what they are all about. They want to hear comments like, “I really feel I would fit into your corporate culture because of x.” Flattery does get you far; just make sure you don’t get cheesy.
3. Looks Do Matter: Ever met a really ugly girl or guy and say to yourself, “Gee, I would love to go on a date with this person.”? If your answer is yes, then you are Gandhi and I am shallow, but for most of the human race that’s not the case, so why would you send over an ugly resume? Folks, spend some time formatting your resume, use pretty fonts, bold and italicize when possible, and add in nice dividers and color. An employer wants to see someone who pays attention to detail and takes pride in making himself look good.
4. Read the Ad: Recently, I was looking for a sales person and I was getting resumes from NASA engineers. Now I guess it is possible that a NASA engineer could be a good sales person but if, and only if, they were selling carbon fiber casings for the new X2120 shuttle. There were so many applicants from career paths that made absolutely no sense that I was almost positive a large majority of people were just sending out their resumes for the sake of sending them. I know we are in a recession, but when does a CPA wake up one day and say to himself, “I want to carry quota!” And if these people really do want to change career paths, they should refer to #1 above. Finally (and this is an old human resources trick), we can really tell if someone has not read the job requirements because at the bottom we like to add a note that says, “DO NOT ATTACH YOUR RESUME.” Anyone who does goes into the deleted folder because, clearly, if they cannot follow simple instructions, how are they going to manage choosing the right carbon fiber vendor?
5. Be Flexible With Who You Are: I can see my lawyer wincing right now but let’s be honest–if your name is Pjhlzeinaian, just change your name to Phil. We can’t pronounce it anyway and that might be the reason we don’t hire you. Besides, if you do get the job, someone is just going to start calling you Phil anyway and even though you feel your parents will be upset because they named you, they will be happier when your ass gets a job and moves out.
Jared Reitzin (www.jaredreitzin.com) is the chief executive officer and founder of Los Angeles-based mobileStorm, which has pioneered the concept of digital marketing allowing clients such as MGM Grand, Carl’s Jr., Qantas Airlines and Amp’d Mobile to send multiple message type from a single system. Prior to that, he was CEO of Katalyst Music Group LLC, an independent record label and new media company where he directed the growth of the company as a promoter for musical acts, and marketing projects for the entertainment community. Mr. Reitzin began his career as a product manager for Interactive Light – a leading developer and provider of networked sports simulators for such companies as IBM, Sega, Microsoft, Sony and Intel. Mr. Reitzin sits on the boards of RACER Mobile Inc., a mobile marketing start-up as well as Wantickets, an online ticketing company. He regularly speaks on panels and at conferences about digital marketing and new media technologies.