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Insider

Guide
Killer Cover
Letters and
Resumes 4TH EDITION
Killer Cover Letters and Resumes

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Killer cover letters and resumes

4th Edition
ISBN: 978-1-58207-741-3

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All illustrations by mckibillo


Killer Cover Letters and Resumes

1 2345
CHAPTER

1 Resumes 5 30 Seconds 11 On Your 21 The Recipe 39 Writing and


and Cover to Satisfy Mark, Get for Resume Formatting
Letters at Set, Prep! Success Your Resume
a Glance 6 Looking Good
on Paper 12 Determining 22 Building a 40 How Long Is Too
What You Have Resume Master Long?
8 The Bottom to Offer List
Line 40 Polishing Your
14 Analyze 22 Essential Prose
Your Skills, Resume
Abilities and Ingredients 43 Top-Level
Achievements Formatting
29 Optional Guidelines
Resume
Ingredients 50 Resume Layout

33 The Resume 58 Special Cases


Menu at a
Glance 66 Sample Resumes

36 Dont Ruin 82 Summary of


the Recipe Resume Dos and
Buzzword Bozos Donts
and Other

conte
Offenders
6 7 8 9 10
85 Writing
a Tasty
101 Digital
Delivery:
109 Great
Research:
117 From
Resume to
125 For Your
Reference
Cover Preparing The Key to Interview
Letter Internet- Tailoring and Beyond 126 Recommended
Ready Your Resources
86 Pique Their Materials Materials 118 Follow
Appetites and Up After 127 Books
Applying 110 Doing Your Sending Your
86 General Online Due Diligence Application 127 Surveys
Cover Letter
Guidelines 102 This 111 Three Steps 120 Prepare Your
Application Is of Effective 30-Second
88 The Experiencing Research Spiel
Ingredients Technical
of Your Cover Difficulties 114 Where to 120 Do You Need a
Letter Look for Portfolio?
104 Getting Past Information
92 Sample Cover the Spam 121 Anticipate Your
Letters Guard Dogs Interviewers
Questions
98 Cover Letter 106 Using Online
Dos and Donts Application 122 Write Those
Systems Thank-You
Letters

nts
Killer Cover
Letters and
Resumes
4th EDITION
Resumes and
Cover Letters

1
at a Glance
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

at a glance The chief aim of history gathering is to identify


transferable skills to highlight on your resume.
These include analytical and problem-solving
30 SECONDS TO SATISFY skills; the ability to produce results; evidence
Your resume has one primary purpose: to of intellectual achievement, leadership and
on your

help determine if you merit an interview. teamwork skills; and specific industry and
mark

A well-constructed resume by itself wont job expertise.


win you the job.
THE RECIPE FOR RESUME SUCCESS
recipe for

A resume and cover letter are marketing tools Create a master resume that includes all of the
success

designed to get the attention of potential resume elements you might use, as well as a full
employers, and interest them in learning more selection of achievement statements, coursework,
about a quality productyou. volunteer activities, hobbies, and anything else
you might use on a job application.
formatting

Your resume must make you stand out quickly.


writing &

The typical resume reviewer will spend less than The essential parts of your resume include
30 seconds looking at your materials. the heading (which displays your contact
information), an education section, and a work
In a nutshell, your resume and cover letter are less experience section.
about where youve been than about where you
a tasty

letter

want to go next. Optional parts of a resume can include an


cover

objective statement, summary of qualifications, a


ON YOUR MARK, GET SET, PREP! profile, and additional information. Your decision
Start by determining what you have to offer: to include or omit optional parts depends on your
Examine your employment history, educational background, experience, and career path.
delivery
digital

experience, membership in academic or


professional organizations, and volunteer or Effective resumes are action-packed! So after
community activities. In addition, write down youve sketched out your experiences on your
your top accomplishments. master list, write them as achievement statements,
which emphasize actions and results.
research

The top qualities that most employers want


great

sometimes have little to do with work


experiencesuch as communication skills, WRITING AND FORMATTING
honesty and integrity, interpersonal skills, a strong YOUR RESUME
resume to
interview

work ethic, and teamwork skills. Entry-level candidates and those with five years
of experience or less should limit their resumes to
Pay close attention to the things you do well, one page. Experienced professionals should write
because they help shape your most valuable no more than two pages.
professional attributes. Dont forget to
REFERENCE

incorporate your talents and natural abilities Your goal is to distill everything you need to say
FOR YOUR

into your resume prep list. into a few carefully chosen words and bullet-
pointed sentences that are easy to scan.

 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
There are two basic ways to layout a resume: The three steps of effective research include
chronologically and functionally. Use the format analyzing the job description, contemplating
that best reveals your strengths for a particular job. the company and investigating the industry.

WRITING A TASTY COVER LETTER Before you prepare your resume and cover letter,

on your
Like a good appetizer, all cover letters have one get in touch with someone in your field who

mark
main purpose: to whet your readers appetite, can help answer questions about what makes
get them interested enough to move on to your a good candidate. If you dont know someone
resume, and then want to interview you. on the inside, try using personal contacts or

recipe for
professional associations.

success
Every cover letter needs to address three areas:
why youre writing, what you have to offer, and FROM RESUME TO INTERVIEW
what happens next. AND BEYOND
If you have submitted your resume and cover

formatting
There are three types of cover letters: those that letter directly to someone in the company, follow

writing &
respond to a specific job opening, those directed up with a phone call or send an email to reiterate
to a specific person, and those that serve as letters your desire to learn more about the position.
of introduction. Dont become a nuisance, but do be persistent.

DIGITAL DELIVERY: The thank-you letter shows gratitude for the

a tasty
PREPARING INTERNET-READY

letter
time the employer has taken to review your

cover
MATERIALS AND APPLYING ONLINE qualifications, and its an opportunity to
Make sure all your digital materials are in reiterate the fit between the position and your
accessible, printable formats. qualifications and goals.

delivery
FOR YOUR REFERENCE

digital
Save four versions of your resume: a Word
document for printing, a PDF for email Want more info to create your killer resume?
attachments, a plain text version with line breaks Check out our list of recommended reading
for the email body, and a plain text version and research.
without line breaks for online forms.

research
great
Dont be afraid to use online application systems,
especially if a firm directs you there. Follow
the instructions precisely, complete the entire
resume to
application, and choose keywords carefully. interview

GREAT RESEARCH: THE KEY TO


TAILORING YOUR MATERIALS
Whatever your background, you wont get far in
REFERENCE

the job market without doing the research that


FOR YOUR

enables you to tailor your resume and cover letter


to address each employers needs and to start
getting ready for an interview.

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 


30 Seconds
to Satisfy

2
Looking Good on Paper................ 6
The Bottom Line........................... 9
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Looking Good Viewed this way, its easy to see how important a
killer cover letter and resume are to a job searchand

on Paper how much potential these marketing tools have. But


any successful marketing campaign requires a carefully
crafted message that speaks directly to the needs of
on your

Youre ready to begin the job hunt. Youve its audience. Your resume should make recruiters say,
mark

researched the types of positions you want and the Yes! This is exactly who we need. I want to meet this
companies for which you want to work. Now you just candidate to learn more.
need to whip together a resume and proceed, right?
recipe for

Sounds simplebut writing a resume that raises you Adopt the Recruiters
success

above the pack and conveys your perfect fit to an Point of View
employer is a challenge indeed, especially if you take Many job seekers make the fundamental mistake of
into account that many recruiters spend less than 30 viewing the job search in terms of their own needs and
seconds scanning a resume before sending it to the desires. While these are certainly important factors in
formatting

yes or no pile. Youve got the goods: experience, finding a fulfilling job and career path, this isnt the
writing &

education, personality. But how do you sum up a most effective way of approaching employers.
lifetimes worth of hard work and accomplishments in Rather than viewing your target employers from
one or two pages of text? the outside looking in, view them from the inside
and place yourself in the recruiters shoes. You need
Resumes and Cover Letters to understand what employers look for in the initial
a tasty

Are Marketing Tools


letter

review of applications, and what qualities will lead you


cover

The first step to creating killer resumes and cover to the next stage in the hiring processthe interview.
letters is to understand what they really are and how To get a sense of the employers perspective, check
to best use them in a successful job search. Most out this bit of information: Recently, ResumeDoctor.
people think a resume is a document that traces ones com contacted more than 5,000 recruiters and hiring
delivery
digital

work history and skills. The cover letter is a formal managers throughout the U.S. and Canada regarding
accompaniment to the resume, intended to introduce the success of using online job postings. More than 92
a job candidate.
But resumes and cover letters are also much more
than that. They are marketing tools to get the attention > TIP
research

of your desired audiencepotential employersand On average, most recruiters spend


great

less than 30 seconds scanning a


interest them in learning more about a quality resume before sending it to the yes
product: you. How do consumer products companies or no pile.
get us to buy their products? Marketing. How do
resume to
interview

financial services companies attract more customers?


Marketing. How do political candidates move their
campaigns forward? Thats right, marketing.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
percent of those surveyed reported being inundated > TIP
with irrelevant responses to their job postings. Most To keep your message targeted
participants indicated that they receive hundreds of and successful, be prepared to
responses per online job posting. customize your resume for each
potential employer. At the very least,

on your
youll need to present a custom
Additional complaints included:

mark
resume for each kind of job you
Resumes that dont match the job description. pursue.
[71%]

recipe for
Job seekers blasting out unsolicited resumes. Target Your Message

success
[63%] A successful job search requires planning and
organization. You may be mentally vowing to research
Job seekers failing to follow specific submission employers and career paths, network with all your
instructions found in job posting. [34%] contacts, and send out your prospecting letters. But

formatting
the first and foremost step is to take a wide view of

writing &
Did you hear that, folks? The number-one your entire work history, skills, personal interests,
complaint from employers is that most resumes they and life path to determine your overall direction.
receive dont match the posted job descriptionthat Your work history should appear as a series of
is, most applicants are not fulfilling employers needs, thoughtful steps leading up to the present, rather than
or even trying to. While the high number of responses a haphazard collection of experiences gained through

a tasty
letter
to job postings may be an obstacle, the lack of chance and whim. Your path isnt that linear, you say?

cover
preparation (not to mention customization) by most Then its your job to select carefully what to feature
job seekers represents a distinct advantage for the savvy from your work history and skill set to present an
resume writer, soon to be you after reading this guide. organized picture.
A successful resume presents an employer with a

delivery
digital
clear pathand in the best cases, that clear path leads
directly to the employers job opportunity. To light the
Most online job postings way, youll need detailed knowledge of your own skills
and work history, as well as knowledge of the employer
bury recruiters with literally to which youre presenting your resume and of the job

research
hundreds of resumes. The ease opening. If youre simply introducing yourself to an

great
with which job seekers can employer to prepare for future opportunities, knowing
what the employer may need or want is just as crucial.
respond to postings online is Once youve made a thorough assessment of your
now their greatest obstacle. own skills and work history, community activities,
resume to
interview

education, even hobbies, you can judiciously select the


Mike Worthington, most enticing bits to present to a particular employer.
cofounder, ResumeDoctor.com And whats enticing to one employer may not be as
appealing to the nextthats why youll need to know
REFERENCE

something about what an employer may need from


FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

you. To keep your message targeted and successful, be What about entry-level candidates without
prepared to customize your resume for each employer. much work experience? The same technique applies,
At the very least, youll need to present a custom but youll need to draw from your education,
resume for each type of job you pursue. extracurricular activities, volunteer or community
work, and personal interests. Altogether, the skills,
on your

Connect the Dots experience, and interests you present should clearly
mark

From your self-assessment and employer research, point to the job opportunity as the natural next step in
you should be able to find the connections between your progression.
your skills and the employers needs and draw a path This may seem like an overwhelming task if youre
recipe for

between the two. Lets say that youre applying for just getting started. But dont worrywell take you
success

a job as a design director for a magazine, but youve through the process step by step.
never held this specific position before. You have, For starters, youll learn about the best ways
however, worked as a print production manager for to prepare for your job search, including how
a publishing company, and a graphic designer for to determine and articulate your strengths,
formatting

an advertising agency. In college, you minored in research companies and jobs, and customize
writing &

visual art and worked at the campus daily newspaper. your presentation toward desired positions and
Youve also volunteered as a docent at a local modern organizations. Next, youll get the full scoop on
art museum and done some additional freelance how to create a killer resume and cover letterfrom
design work. what information they should (and shouldnt)
At first glance, these might seem like a collection contain to how they should look and read.
a tasty

letter

of experiences only tangentially related to a job as a Multiple cover letter and resume examples, as well
cover

design director. But lets start from the beginning of as suggestions for creating layouts that suit your
the path in college. You have hands-on visual arts skills unique needs, will give you great ideas for how your
and worked on a fast-paced periodical, the campus own materials should come together. The section
newspaper. To that, you added experience as a graphic on special concerns examines common problem
delivery
digital

designer, showing that you have first-hand experience areassuch as international careers, overqualified
in the graphic art industry, know how to put designs candidate syndrome, or big chronological gaps
together in a real-world context, and have used design with helpful tips for addressing them. The final
in marketing endeavors for the ad agency. Your section contains suggestions for following up on
volunteer work as a docent at the modern art museum your application, as well as resources that will help
research

highlights your personal interest in the visual arts. Your you in your job search.
great

freelance graphic design work shows that you have the


ability to manage projects from concept to completion,
not to mention an entrepreneurial bent. And finally, > TIP
In a nutshell, your resume and
resume to
interview

youve proven that you can manage both projects and


cover letter are less about where
other workers with your experience as a production youve been than about where you
manager. This chain of experiences draws a reasonable want to go next.
path to a role as a design director for a print periodical.
The experiences may not have been sequential, but the
REFERENCE

way in which you present them can still clearly show


FOR YOUR

how you would fit into the new role.

 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
The
Bottom Line

on your
At best, resume readers spend 30 seconds

mark
reviewing a cover letter or resume the first time. This
is especially true in a competitive job market where
recruiters may receive up to 200 responses to a single

recipe for
advertised job posting. In 30 seconds, your cover

success
letter and resume package need to convey an image of
who you are, your capabilities and strengths, and how
youve used your abilities to achieve results. Ideally, it
indicates that you know yourself well and have a firm

formatting
grasp on what you bring to the table. In a nutshell,

writing &
your cover letter and resume are less about where
youve been than about where you want to go next and
how youre qualified to do so.
Although insiders tell us there isnt one right
answer to the question of how to create a good cover

a tasty
letter
letter or resume (phew!), they say that the best ones are

cover
concise, results-oriented, and very clearly presented.
Of course, a great resume alone wont land you the job
of your dreams, but appropriate choices in shaping
your materials make you far more likely to get a call,

delivery
digital
and can even help you sail more smoothly through the
interview process. This guide will show you the way.

research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 


On Your Mark,

3
Get Set, Prep!
Determine What
You Have to Offer....................... 12
Analyze Your Skills,
Abilities and Achievements......... 14
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Determine Following are the main areas to consider when listing


your accomplishments, skills and abilities.

What You Employment History

Have to Offer The best way to get started building a resume is to


on your

map out your employment history. When evaluating


mark

a potential candidate, employers first will look for


Ever get stuck watching Uncle Freds travel previous experience in areas similar or related to the
slides? Time ticks by mercilessly as Fred displays position being filled.
recipe for

endless photos while giving excruciatingly detailed Prepare a chronological list of the major jobs
success

descriptions of people you will never meet and places youve held. Include the company names, your
youd never want to visit. Whatever you do, dont let titles, managers names, the time you spent in
your cover letter and resume become like Uncle Freds those positions, starting and ending salaries, and
pictures. Always keep your audience in mind, and primary responsibilities. Remember, not all of this
formatting

include only the highlights of your experiences. information will go end up on the resume; youre
writing &

Before you begin writing, take a good look at just collecting details that form the big picture of
yourself. Which elements of your years of wisdom, your employment history. Seeing your work history
experience, and accomplishment belong on a couple of laid out will help you identify upward trends in your
sheets of paper, and which dont? What characteristics career, such as responsibility, increased salary, or
make you stand out from the crowd but also show other advancement. Your employment history will
a tasty

letter

that youre a team player? What kind of candidate does also reveal any gaps that youll need to address on the
cover

your target employer usually hire? Be prepared to think resume or in the interview.
through your activities and achievements and tell your
compelling life story in one to two pages. Educational Experience
In addition to knowing all of the factual Gather your school transcripts, standardized test
delivery
digital

information about yourselfincluding grades, test scores, scholarship applications and awards, and any
scores, and dates of employmentthink about how other information that may help you paint a picture
to portray yourself in a positive, confident light of your academic accomplishments. Calculate your
while telling the true story of who you are and what GPA, because you might need this information at
youve accomplished. You must have insight into some point. If youre concerned about your GPA,
research

your strengths and weaknesses to create a compelling calculate it using several cutsoverall, major-
great

resume and cover letter. only, or by yearto see which provides the most
Get started by cataloguing all of your knowledge favorable view to note on your resume, or at least
areas, skill sets, and abilities. Theres no need to get mention in the interview, if asked. Always use a
resume to
interview

fancy herejust brainstorm and create a comprehensive standard 4.0 scale.


list. Your knowledge areas will be drawn from your Review your school curriculum and make note of
education, past employment, vocational training, and any special areas of study. What was your major? Did
professional certifications. Your skills and abilities, on you have a minor? Did you take any special courses,
the other hand, have been developed through a variety such as business communication, economics, media, or
REFERENCE

of life experiences, including your past internships, art history? These areas of knowledge may be helpful
FOR YOUR

volunteer work, and other career-related activities. in applying for certain jobs.

12 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Look, too, at your academic record from a Top Accomplishments
skills-and-abilities perspective. For example, did List the most significant accomplishments from your
you undertake any special projects or collaborative professional, academic, and personal experiences.
assignments as part of your courses? These may be Write down each achievement; then explain why it is
evidence of teamwork and group leadership abilities, significant to you, how you achieved it, how others

on your
talents that most employers prize. As you will read helped you, and how you measure its success. You will

mark
shortly, your aim is to sift your experiencefrom need to include information about at least two of your
whatever sourcefor transferable skills. top accomplishments in your resume, preferably with
an indication of the results you achieved.

recipe for
Membership in Professional or Why take this additional step? Effective resumes are

success
Academic Organizations outcome-based. They stress achievements, and dont
Are you or were you a member of any academic or just list duties and responsibilities. The easiest way
professional organizations, societies, and committees? for an employer to predict your potential value to the
Make note of any organizations in which you are or company is to study your record of accomplishments.

formatting
have been involved and describe the role you played If you only list what you didas opposed to what you

writing &
in each. Write down any notable achievements or how achievedyou risk hiding your unique contributions.
you helped these organizations fulfill their aims. Again, Weve urged you to look beyond your work history
entry-level candidates and career changers may be able when listing what you have to offer in your next
to use their memberships in organizations to their job. Why? Put simply, a career is developed through
advantage while applying for new positions. an accumulation of life experiences, both in and

a tasty
letter
outside of the workplace. Wherever you are in your

cover
Volunteer or Community career, its to your advantage to draw from a variety of
Activities professional and personal experiences when presenting
Volunteering is a great way to gain valuable experience your skills and abilities to an employer.
that can be applied to a job. Make note of any

delivery
digital
community activities in which youve participated. Do
you volunteer as a Big Brother or Big Sister? Part of
the Rotary Club? Deliver meals during the holidays?
All of these activities can be sources of valuable
experience to present to an employer. Not only that,

research
but extracurricular activities such as these also tell an

great
employer something about your motivation, character,
values, and work ethic.
For entry-level candidates without a lot of work
resume to
experience, volunteering is a great way to get some interview

experience! Volunteering also has the added benefit


of introducing you to potential references and
networking contacts.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 13


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Analyze Hard and Soft Skills


As we suggested already, you may need to learn to

Your Skills, look at skills from a number of angles. Employers


and recruiters often separate professional skills into

Abilities, and two sets: hard skills and soft skills. Hard skills
on your

typically include the more left-brained areas, such


mark

Achievements as programming, mechanical aptitude, finance,


accounting, marketing, operations, and strategy.
Soft skills are the right-brained areas, such as
recipe for

Entry-level and internship candidates may feel communication, interpersonal skills, collaboration,
success

especially challenged when it comes to proving their leadership, motivation, and creativity. You may see
mettle to potential employers. Dont worry. The top soft skills referred to sometimes as adaptive or self-
qualities that most employers want sometimes have management skills. During the technology boom of
little to do with work experience. the 90s, many employers tended to downplay the
formatting

To understand why this is so, consider employers importance of soft skills, but in todays employment
writing &

responses to the National Association of Colleges and market, soft skills have gained a whole new respect.
Employers (NACE) Job Outlook 2007 survey, which This is not to say, however, that the hard skills arent
asked employers to rate the importance of a candidates important. Most successful job candidates display
qualities and skills on a five-point scale, with five being a balance of both skill sets. So, to escape any value
extremely important and one being not important. judgment inherent in describing skills as hard and
a tasty

letter

soft, lets recast them as functional and strategic


cover

Here are their top five responses: skills instead. A successful resume displays a reasonable
Communication skills (4.7) balance of both areas because hiring managers are
seeking both skill types, preferring a well-rounded
Honesty/integrity (4.7) candidate who has a solid knowledge base and the
delivery
digital

personal traits to succeed.


Interpersonal skills (4.5) This presents a challenge to candidates with
scientific and humanities backgrounds alike.
Strong work ethic (4.5) Those applying for technical positions need to
demonstrate some strategic skills, such as teamwork
research

Teamwork skills (4.5) and communication, while those applying for non-
great

technical positions would benefit from revealing


The attributes in the preceding list are the ones some functional skills, such as marketing, finance, or
employers designate as the most desired year after computer skills.
resume to
interview

year. Fortunately, your educational achievements,


extracurricular and community activities, or special
projects can reveal these attributes in abundance.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

To find out more about the NACE Job Outlook survey, please see the resource section at the end of this guide,
or visit www.naceweb.org.

14 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Abilities and Talents
Your abilities and talents can reveal skills that you may
Top Five Things Employers Look
not have considered. While skills, especially functional for When Reviewing a Resume
ones, are learned, abilities or talents are things at which
we naturally excel. Equally important, your abilities
5. A well-rounded candidate

on your
and talents usually point you to the jobs at which

mark
4. Something that makes you stand out from
youll probably be happiest and most successful. all the others who are applying for the job
Good at making friends? Then your interpersonal
3. A balance of work (or academic) and life
skills must be top-notch! Great at last-minute experiences

recipe for
Halloween costumes? Then you must be highly

success
2. Someone who went to the interviewers
visually creative! Never need to look at the instructions alma mater (not that shes biased)
when assembling IKEA furniture? Then you must
1. A typoso the recruiter can throw it out
have superior mechanical aptitude! Be sure to pay
close attention to the things you do well, because they

formatting
probably help shape your most valuable professional

writing &
attributes. So, dont forget to incorporate your talents
and natural abilities into your resume prep list.

Identify Transferable Skills


The chief aim of all your history gathering and soul

a tasty
letter
searching is to identify the transferable skills that

cover
youll highlight on your resume. What are transferable
skills? Basically, they are skills and abilities that are
useful in a variety of jobs. Which skills you choose to
transfer onto your resume depends on the particular

delivery
digital
requirements of the position and the corporate culture
of each company youre targeting.
The list of questions following each skill set will
help you identify your transferable skills and what
youve accomplished with them. These questions

research
should also help you see that skills or expertise

great
developed in one context can help you prepare for a
successful career in another.

resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 15


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Analytical Ability to
and Problem- Produce
Solving Skills Results
on your
mark

Analytical and problem-solving skills are An increasing number of employerseven


critical components of many jobs, particularly in nonprofit organizationswant evidence that a
recipe for

business and scientific fields. For example, they are candidate can produce results. Accordingly, your
success

fundamental to your success in industries such as resume should demonstrate successful outcomes
financial services and consulting, especially during and suggest that you have the ambition, motivation,
the first few years of your career. In these fields, if you attention to detail, and energy necessary to achieve an
show no evidence of these skills, you wont get to the employers goals.
formatting

interview.
writing &

Have you:
Have you: Brought new customers or revenue into your
Sifted through data and assumptions and company?
identified reasonable responses to complex
problems? Developed new programs or initiatives?
a tasty

letter
cover

Synthesized large amounts of information and Proven that youre a self-starter who goes above
identified trends or issues? and beyond requirements?

Identified a problem and taken a proactive Shown the ability to prioritize and move quickly
delivery
digital

approach to solving it? among different tasks?

Done well in courses with heavy analytical and Set a challenging goal and achieved it?
quantitative content?
Attended to the details while juggling multiple
research

Performed experiments that required formulation tasks?


great

of a hypothesis and collection of evidence to prove


or disprove it? Taken an innovative or efficient approach to
getting something done?
resume to
interview

Taken courses in mathematics, statistics, or other


subjects that require analytical thinking? The need for specific, quantitative measurements of
your accomplishments should start you thinking about
If so, you may have the analytical ability how to track and measure your achievements, if you
employers seek. havent done that already.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

16 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Intellectual Leadership
Achievement Leadership can be expressed both through your
managerial experience and through your willingness to

on your
Can you demonstrate superior knowledge of take on responsibility, even if your role is not that of a

mark
a particular subject? Have you achieved exceptional supervisor or team captain. Many employers look for
results in your academic pursuits? Employers are leadership qualities in their staff.
often interested in people who can excel beyond

recipe for
the norm, or who demonstrate drive and ambition Have you:

success
in their endeavors. Directed peoples activities?

Have you: Facilitated meetings?


Earned honors or academic awards?

formatting
Led teams in solving problems?

writing &
Received academic scholarships or fellowships?
Coordinated outside vendors?
Taken on challenging courses or a heavy workload?
Held a leadership position in a school
Engaged in intellectual pursuits (chess, computer organization, team, or club?

a tasty
letter
programming, etc.)?

cover
Been elected to a post by your peers?
Attended academically rigorous schools?
Organized or coordinated noteworthy events?
Done well on standardized tests (SAT, GMAT,

delivery
digital
LSAT, and so on)? Had a position of significant responsibility with a
previous employer?
Earned a high GPA?
Hired or fired anyone?
Received awards and recognition in the workplace?

research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 17


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Teamwork Industry and


The ability to work with clients or colleagues
is a critical component of most work environments.
Job Expertise
on your

Employers also value employees who can inspire If you have a strong understanding of an industry
mark

others toward a common goal. Teamwork requires through experience or academic training, youll want
an ability to communicate clearly and to collaborate to highlight this on your resume and cover letter. Of
with managers, peers, assistants, clients, vendors, course, the skills that are considered most important
recipe for

and anyone else with whom you have contact vary by industry. Here are some useful ways to think
success

through your work. about your knowledge and past expertise.

Have you: Have you:


Been a member of a sports team, study group, Worked in a particular industry for a good
formatting

or committee? chunk of time?


writing &

Worked effectively with people whose work style Held various roles within one industry?
or cultural background differs from yours?
Held similar functional roles in different
Inspired others to take action in an unstructured industries? Been able to apply your functional
a tasty

letter

situation? knowledge from one industry to another?


cover

Taken on the role of a team leader or player Written a thesis or research paper about a
as needed? particular industry, business issue, or other topic?
delivery
digital

Of course you have. We dont know of any Volunteered in a particular field, or followed
candidate, particularly one with a high level of current events related to an industry or issue?
academic training, who hasnt been involved in
working with a team. (Gotta love those study groups!) Participated in conventions, conferences,
Identify the teams or groups youve joined and symposiums, or associations in a specific field?
research

think about the roles you played. Employers may


great

want to hear about your ability to make productive Developed specialized skillssuch as technical,
contributions, the type of role you tend to play on a industry-based, administrative, or in-depth
team, or how youve worked with a team to identify knowledgefrom your academic training?
resume to
interview

and solve a problem.


Unlike Uncle Fred, with his misguided approach
to sharing past exploits, you can write carefully
focused descriptions of your most interesting and
valuable experiences to share with recruiters and
REFERENCE

hiring managers. The goal of assessing your skills is


FOR YOUR

to identify what you can offer an employer, and to


demonstrate how hiring you will help a company meet
its objectives.

18 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
a tasty
at a 30 seconds on your recipe for writing & cover digital great resume to FOR YOUR
glance to satisfy mark success formatting letter delivery research interview REFERENCE

19
WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE
The Recipe for
Resume Success

4
Building a Resume
Master List.................................. 22
The Essential
Resume Ingredients..................... 22
Optional Resume Ingredients..... 29
The Resume Menu at a Glance.... 33
Dont Ruin the Recipe
Buzzword Bozos and
Other Offenders.......................... 36
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Building The Essential


a Resume Resume
Master List Ingredients
on your
mark

Every good cook knows that a single recipe cant Your resume will always have at least three parts
please everybody. The same can be said for developing or sections:
recipe for

a resume and cover letter for a successful job search. Contact Information
success

One standard resume will simply not work. Get


comfortable with the idea that youll need to customize Experience
your resume for each position you want to apply for.
At the very least, youll want to create several versions Education
formatting

of your resumeone for each industry or type of


writing &

position youre targeting. > TIP


The best way to address this need is to create Heads up! Use the same heading on
a master resume, a document that includes all of your cover letter that you create for
the resume elements you might use, as well as a your resume. This looks professional
full selection of refined achievement statements, and provides a visual cue that the
documents belong together. And
a tasty

letter

coursework, volunteer activities, hobbies, or anything


cover

dont forget the graphic punch of


else you might use for a particular job application. branding your name!
A master list helps you keep all of your resume
ingredients in one place. Then, when youre ready to
apply for a job, you can simply select the elements and Your contact information always comes first, but
delivery
digital

achievements from your master list that you think will youll have to choose whether to cover experience
be most impressive to the employer. before education, or vice versa. Generally, lead with
As youre reading through the following your strength. Students with little work experience
descriptions of common resume ingredients, begin will want to place their education section near the top
jotting down notes for each section to see where you of their resumes. As your school days grow distant,
research

have the most material. From there, pare down your employers become much more interested in your
great

material to create your master list. professional experience than in the fact that you were
editor of your school newspaper, or what your major
was. Experienced professionals (those a few years or
resume to
interview

more out of school) should always emphasize their


work history and save education for last. Career
changers, however, may want to place their education
section near the top of their resumes if they have little
or no experience in the field they wish to enter but do
REFERENCE

have education or training in that field.


FOR YOUR

Lets explore the three essential sections that are the


heart of your resume.

22 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Contact Information Experience
Every resume starts with a heading that displays the The most important part of any resume, and the
two most important pieces of information to supply section many recruiters study most closely, is a job
to a potential employer: your name and contact seekers experience. If youre an experienced candidate,
information. Seems straightforward, but many people this section will highlight the past jobs youve held.

on your
make the mistake of sending resumes with old contact Entry-level candidates can fill out this section with

mark
information or of omitting telephone numbers and a combination of work experience, extracurricular
email addresses. Be sure to include the name you activities, and volunteer work.
use professionally, a home address, and the personal To get started on your experience section,

recipe for
telephone number or numbers where you are most create a master list of your work history in reverse

success
easily reached. Note: If you have a two-page resume, chronological order. List the month and year that you
your name, phone number, and email address should began and ended each job, your job title, the name of
also appear at the top of the second page. the company, and the responsibilities you held.
Get a job search email account if you dont Think about your experience in terms of results

formatting
already have one; using a unique email address produced. Be short on the description of duties and

writing &
for your job search will help you to avoid losing long on verifiable outcomes. Quantify your results
messages from employers among the many personal with numbers wherever possible to give the resume
messages you receive each day. Select an email reader a clearer picture of your accomplishments.
address that displays your name. For example: Always remember that your aim is to show in your
mary_johnson@hotmail.com. (See the Internet resume not just the types of experience youve had,

a tasty
letter
delivery chapter of this guide for additional dos and but also how effectively you performed your duties,

cover
donts on formulating an email address.) what benefits you brought to your employer while
You want your name to stand out and stick in working there, and how valuable youll be to your next
the readers mind, which is why the heading should employer. Finally, fill out your experience list by citing
be highlighted using a bold or an enlarged typeface. any particular accomplishments, including awards or

delivery
digital
Remember, a resume is a marketing piece about you, special recognition, you received at each job.
and subtle visual tricks like this can be very effective. Effective resumes are action-packed documents!
Dont go crazy, however, by using ridiculously huge So after youve roughed out your experiences on your
letters. Stick with a font size between 12 and 18 points master list, youre going to write them as achievement
for the most effective visual punch. Finally, center your statementsphrases that emphasize actions and results.

research
contact information on the page or align it along the

great
left margin. This will make it easier to see if its filed in
a folder or binder.

resume to
> TIP interview

Odd numbers are more believable


and persuasive than even numbers.
19% sounds like a number taken
from a financial report, while 20%
sounds like a wild guess. Be exact!
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 23


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

The following table is a useful tool for getting started with this crucial step. At the top of each
column, youll see a major area of competency that employers look for in jobseekers. Below each
category is a list of action words that indicate you prove your competency. Study the table and circle
the action words that relate to your work, academic, or personal experience. Use the extra spaces
provided to write additional action words that apply to your record of experience.
on your
mark

Communication Teamwork Management


recipe for
success

authored assisted administered

composed backed approved

consulted brokered conducted


formatting
writing &

conveyed collaborated decided


corresponded contributed delegated
drafted cooperated directed
edited coordinated executed
explained created synergies guided
a tasty

finessed helped handled


letter
cover

interpreted participated hired


justified partnered with managed
mediated reinvigorated oversaw
negotiated shared project-managed
delivery
digital

reported solidified ran


revised strategized regulated
simplified supported supervised
translated united trained
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

24 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
on your
mark
recipe for
Leadership Initiative Adaptability

success
coached achieved adapted
conducted conceived adopted
enabled created anticipated

formatting
writing &
facilitated cultivated changed
founded designed complied
governed determined engineered
guided developed improved
headed devised integrated

a tasty
instructed established invented

letter
cover
led expanded learned
motivated garnered mastered
piloted generated modified

delivery
prescribed implemented negotiated

digital
recommended initiated problem-solved
taught instituted resolved
unified launched retrenched
united originated trained

research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 25


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Analytical Organizational Results/Achievements


analyzed administered built
appraised arranged completed
assessed compiled doubled/tripled
on your
mark

broke down coordinated enhanced


calculated distributed grew
categorized gathered made
recipe for

evaluated operated maximized/minimized


success

examined ordered outpaced


experimented organized/reorganized produced
innovated maintained rebuilt
inspected managed reduced
formatting
writing &

investigated prepared re-energized


quantified prioritized sold
researched processed solved
reviewed scheduled started up
surveyed sequenced transformed
a tasty

letter
cover

systemized synthesized turned around


delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

26 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
To write an achievement statement, associate Now its your turn to try...
each of the action words you circled with specific
skills, abilities, and experiences. Each achievement Write Your Own Achievement Statements
statement describes: Use this workbook to practice writing your own
what action was taken, achievement statements.

on your
mark
in what setting, Action: _ ___________________________________
__________________________________________
with what skills, __________________________________________

recipe for
__________________________________________

success
and with what results.
Setting: ____________________________________
The following example demonstrates how to write __________________________________________
an achievement statement that really achieves! __________________________________________

formatting
__________________________________________

writing &
Step 1: Analyze Your Experience
Action: campaigned for environmental organization Skills: _ ____________________________________
__________________________________________
Setting: worked with the public __________________________________________
__________________________________________

a tasty
letter
Skills: defined goals, designed campaign, implemented

cover
campaign, conducted outreach, educated public Results: ____________________________________
__________________________________________
Results: improved public awareness of issues, increased __________________________________________
visibility of organization, generated 500 __________________________________________

delivery
digital
new members ($5,000 revenue), acquired $20,000
in donations Situation (job, academic, personal): _______________
__________________________________________
Step 2: Write a Results-Oriented __________________________________________
Achievement Statement __________________________________________

research
Environmental Advocate, Sierra Club: Designed

great
and implemented a campaign strategy to educate the Statement: __________________________________
public about climate change and shape international __________________________________________
treaties on the issue. Generated more than $25,000 __________________________________________
resume to
in new memberships and donations __________________________________________ interview

to support the campaign. __________________________________________


__________________________________________
__________________________________________
__________________________________________
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 27


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Education
This section might be more aptly titled Education example
and Academic Achievement. Information here should
include schools attended, degrees conferred and BS, sociology, minor in business, 2001
when, and other information regarding your academic Michigan State University
on your

achievement, including GPA, SAT/GRE/GMAT


mark

Coursework included:
scores, scholarships and awards earned, honor society Financial & Management Accounting
memberships, class ranking, etc. List only those things Corporate Finance
that showcase your strengths. A 3.0 GPA isnt likely to Statistics & Statistical Analysis
Principles of Sales Management
recipe for

impress anyone, nor is a 600 on the GMAT. These are


success

Marketing Strategy & Planning


perfectly respectable statistics, but if they arent going Market Research
to wow the reader, you might as well save the space for
more impressive details. Computer skills:
HTML, MS Office, ACT!, WordPerfect
What not to list? Theres no need to list high
formatting

schools attended; accomplishments in high school


writing &

Sample research project:


generally apply to enrolling in a college, rather Discriminant Analysis and Psychographic
than getting a job. Listing when you received your Profile of Consumer Market for Premixed Ethnic
Foods
degree(s) is optional. Doing so may reveal your age
and how current your knowledge is, which may or
may not be desirable.
a tasty

letter

You can also include in this section special


cover

certifications, licenses, or additional vocational training


youve completed. Many job seekers make the mistake
of omitting appropriate professional development
training: non-credit courses, workshops, seminars,
delivery
digital

conferences, and on-the-job training. Employers value


this education since it often directly relates to the job
and is usually more recent. Of course, list only those
things that showcase your strengths and are relevant to
the job that youre seeking.
research

To get maximum mileage out of your education,


great

describe honors, awards, and special projects. Use


the heading coursework, and you can describe the
contents of the curriculum without worrying about
resume to
interview

the actual name of each class. Heres an example:


By fleshing out work youve done in school that
is relevant to the job youre applying for, you can
skirt the issue of little work experience or a lack of
experience in a particular job or industry while still
REFERENCE

presenting yourself as a skilled candidate.


FOR YOUR

28 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Optional
Resume
Ingredients

on your
mark
You may want to add additional sections to your Youre a career changer applying for a job
resume if doing so helps a reader to understand how in a field in which you have little or no

recipe for
your qualifications fit the position youre targeting. prior experience.

success
Directly after the heading, you can add an objective
statement, a summary of qualifications, or a profile. Youre applying for a job that is a clear
And you can close your resume with a section of advancement from those you previously held.
additional information that lists particular skills or

formatting
credentials, or that reveals your interests and activities. Your work history consists of a variety of types

writing &
Lets look at each of these optional resume ingredients of experience.
and consider when its worthwhile to include them.
And if you are leading your resume with your
Objective Statement educational accomplishments, you may want to
An objective statement conveys your immediate include an objective to prepare the recruiter to evaluate

a tasty
letter
career goals and reason for contacting an employer. your achievements in terms of your career goals.

cover
Professionals with many years of experience in a Your objective statement should be specific and
particular career who are applying for a job similar to straightforward, and limited to one or two concise
one theyve held should skip the objective statement. sentences. Dont bother with a general one-size-
In such a case, allow your experience to speak for itself fits-all objective statement, such as I am seeking a

delivery
digital
by including one or two extra achievement statements. challenging position that utilizes and expands my
Those applying to firms in fields which have professional skills. That tells the recruiter nothing and
formal hiring channels, such as financial services is simply a waste of space.
or consulting, should also leave out the objective Instead, use the objective to customize your resume
statement. Submitting your resume is enough to state directly to the job or company that you are targeting.

research
your objective in these situations. For applicants in The objective can be as simple as, Seeking an associate

great
other fields, an objective statement might be effective copywriter position in the advertising industry.
in the following situations: Career changers or those trying to emphasize their
Youre applying to a very large company transferable skills might say something like, Looking
resume to
with many similar positions. to put extensive customer service and relationship- interview

building skills to work as a public relations account


Youre an entry-level candidate with little manager. A well-crafted objective can function as a
job experience. thesis statement, setting the direction in which the
resume will follow.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

For detailed information on investment banking or consulting resumes, see the WetFeet Insider Guides
Killer Investment Banking Resumes! and Killer Consulting Resumes!, both available from www.wetfeet.com

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 29


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Writing an Objective Statement

Part I
Write down the kinds of positions, types of organizations or settings, and specific skills you want to use or
develop in your next job.
on your
mark

Position Desired: _________________________________________________________________________


Setting: ________________________________________________________________________________
Skills or Goals: _ _________________________________________________________________________
recipe for
success

Part II
Now practice putting the information generated in Part I of this exercise into objective statements you can use in
formatting

your resume or cover letter. Below are some suggested phrases to get you started.
writing &

Seeking a challenging ________________________ position in the ________________________ field


that offers an opportunity to ________________________________________________________________ .
______________________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________________
a tasty

letter
cover

To use _____________________ , _____________________ , and ________________________ skills


in a position as a _________________________________________________________________________ .
______________________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________________
delivery
digital

A career position that will build on experiences as ________________________________________________ ,


while contributing to ______________________________________________________________________ .
______________________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________________
research
great

Seeking an entry-level opportunity in _ ________________________________________________________ .


______________________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________________
resume to
interview

To provide ______________________________________________________________________________
to an organization that ____________________________________________________________________ .
______________________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________________
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

30 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Summary of Skills or > TIP
Qualifications If youre building a career in
Including an attention-grabbing, bulleted list of skills financial services or consulting, omit
or qualifications near the top of your resume can the objective statement or skills
draw the recruiter into the details of your experience. summary in your resume.

on your
This section can also be titled Relevant Skills,

mark
Professional Summary, Highlight of Qualifications,
Core Expertise, or the like. Since most recruiters
only spend a few seconds scanning a resume before

recipe for
deciding to pass or look more closely, a brief list of If you include a summary of skills or qualifications,

success
your strongest points that are most relevant to the keep it brief. Think of this section as a series of quick
job for which youre applying may be the difference sound bytes that will help your reader spot your
between landing in the yes or the no pile. most relevant qualifications.
An effective summary of skills section might list

formatting
the following: Profile

writing &
Job-specific knowledge, training, or certifications If youre a highly experienced professional, adding
a profile is an excellent strategy for targeting your
Technical skills or expertise applicable to a resume. The profile provides a snapshot of experience
particular field or skills in a particular area, or it characterizes the
general scope of your career and your career trajectory.

a tasty
letter
An accomplishment that shows you can do The profile is used in place of, and not in addition to,

cover
the job an objective statement.
Starting your resume with a profile is particularly
A personal quality or characteristic thats useful in useful in the following situations:
a particular job setting You have used similar transferable skills in

delivery
digital
a variety of industries or job functions.
Whats more, this section is a useful way to
introduce keywords into your resume. Keywords are You have more years of work experience in
terms that are closely associated with a particular job, your profession than you can reasonably fit
career, or industry, and they tend to be the ones that on your resume.

research
hiring managers look for. You can often spot relevant

great
keywords by looking in job postings where they You have two or more core areas of expertise that
repeatedly appear as core competencies or desired skills. you wish to use together in your next job.
A summary of skills or qualifications can benefit
resume to
candidates who have extensive professional experience You have gaps in your work history, or your core interview

and also those whose experience doesnt exactly match experience is not sequential.
the job description. For the experienced candidate,
this section helps the reader zero in on whats most
important, and for the entry-level job seeker or the
REFERENCE

career changer it can be used to highlight transferable


FOR YOUR

skills. As with the objective statement, financial


services and consulting candidates should leave this
section out.

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 31


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

When developing your profile, you may want to > TIP


include the following: Dont worry if your cover letter
Number of years experience in the field or reiterates some of the information
line of work in your resume profile. In fact,
consider using the cover letter to
on your

expand on one or two points from


Relevant credentials or training
mark

these highlights.

Accomplishments that directly relate to the


targeted job
recipe for

Additional Information
success

Think of your profile as a mini-advertisement. Its (Activities, Additional Skills,


a direct, high-impact statement formulated to elicit Interests)
a Wow! response. Of course, you need to select This the spot to tell the recruiter a bit more about
the most relevant details and outcomes that apply to yourself and add color to your candidacy. Details
formatting

the work you are pursuing. Limit your profile to no typically include activities, interests, associations,
writing &

more than three sentences. Here are some examples of memberships, and skills not already covered, such
effective profiles: as fluency in foreign languages. Relevance is the key
here; mention only those activities that help to qualify
Results-driven marketing professional skilled in you for the job. For example, stating that you chaired
establishing brands, creating marketing and public a local charitable committee would be relevant to a
a tasty

letter

relations strategies, and designing effective marketing position requiring teamwork and leadership skills. And
cover

collateral. Six years of experience supporting aggressive dont go overboard! Three or four activities are enough.
revenue growth and client acquisition. An employer may become concerned about your
commitment to the job if you belong to a lot of clubs
Fifteen years experience in architectural or teams and have a large number of hobbies.
delivery
digital

engineering and construction project management. Insiders tell us that interesting or unusual
Contributed to high-end projects such as the information in this section can play a significant role
construction of the new De Young Museum, multi- in the decision to award an interview. However, be
story residential lofts featuring modern luxury exceptionally careful about the kind of information
amenities, and refurbishment of the central dome of you offer. Many people we interviewed say they
research

San Franciscos city hall. rejected otherwise decent resumes because of strange
great

mentions in the Additional Information section.


Bringing a masters degree in cognitive For example, saying you won the Twinkie-eating
development and extensive studio training in fine arts contest at your fraternity by eating 47 Twinkies in 15
resume to
interview

to the health care field through clinical art therapy. minutes isnt necessarily a selling point if youre trying
Effective hands-on paid and intern experience to break into the financial services industryor most
assisting in cognitive, emotional, and motor skills industries for that matter.
rehabilitation. Certified Art Therapist and board Here are some special points to consider about the
member of American Art Therapy Association. Additional Activities section:
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

32 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Information hinting at gender,
race, or sexual orientation. The Resume
Some organizations want to recruit a varied workforce
to serve a culturally diverse clientele. Mentioning Menu at a
activities that hint at gender, race, religion, or sexual
Glance

on your
orientation may afford you a slight advantage if

mark
your activities indicate that you belong to a group
a particular employer is trying to recruit. This is a The following menu spotlights all of the
high-risk strategy, however, and you should carefully conventional and optional elements that can make up a

recipe for
research of the company you are targetingand resume. Think of them as pieces of a puzzle; you must

success
speak to company insidersbefore you add decide which elements enhance your marketability
information of this kind. and the best way to arrange them to demonstrate your
value to the company or organization.
Work eligibility. Warning! No resume would ever include all of the

formatting
The Additional Information section is the place to elements in the table. Only your contact information,

writing &
state your work eligibility if you have a work visa education, and experience are essential. The need for
or residency status. Many candidates with foreign- optional elements depends on your level of experience
sounding names prefer to state their citizenship to and on the unique requirements of a particular job,
avoid potential concerns about their work eligibility. profession, or industry. Be sure to check out the
sample resumes in the next chapter to get a sense of

a tasty
Religion and politics.

letter
how these sections can work together for your benefit.

cover
If you choose to list religious or political activities,
its a good idea to omit the religious denomination > TIP
or party designation. For example, cite your Fluency in a foreign language means
accomplishments working on a senatorial campaign the ability to conduct business in

delivery
that language. If you cant do that,

digital
without mentioning the candidates name.
then dont mention it.
(Remember, the recruiter or employer may have
voted for your candidates opponent!)

research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 33


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Common Resume Ingredients


Section What It Is Remarks
Heading
on your

Contact Information Name, mailing address, telephone number(s), Employer can see your current location and
mark

email address, website. easily contact you.

Optional Opening Elements


recipe for

Objective One-sentence summary of your immedi- Can add focus to a resume with varied or little
success

ate work goals. Directly follows the contact experience.


information.
Summary of Skills Lists most relevant skills or keywords relevant Helps reader quickly identify your relevant
to the targeted position. skills.
formatting

Summary of Qualifications List of top three or four points about your Pre-sells the reader about your value to the
writing &

achievements or experience. company.

Profile A mini-ad that reveals your expertise and best Enables the experienced candidate to portray
attributes in a few sentences. core areas of expertise and outline career
trajectory.
Education
a tasty

letter
cover

Education Degree, major, institution, location, date degree An essential element. Lead with this section if a
conferred. GPA is optional. recent graduate or have little experience.
Be sure to consider . . .
Honors and Awards Academic awards, scholarships, recognition for Demonstrates leadership or intellectual
delivery
digital

achievements in fields relevant to the job. achievement.


Certifications, Licensure, Important to list if a required qualification for Must be current, especially if licensure is a
Credentials certain positions, such as therapists, lifeguards, required qualification for position.
and engineers.
Training Relevant training, continuing education, confer- Shows professional development.
research

ence participation.
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

34 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Experience

Employment History All relevant employment listed in reverse An essential element. Entries should stress
chronological order (most recent first). Must achievements or results.
include date, title, employer, and location.
Be sure to consider . . .

on your
mark
Volunteer or community service Include date, title or role, organization, and Helpful for those who have little employment
organizations location. history; describe job-related achievements and
results, leadership roles.
Internships Experiential training youve had as relevant to Most useful for new grads or career changers,

recipe for
skills and qualifications. Can include paid or or if internship is part of academic curriculum.

success
unpaid positions.
Additional Optional Information

Be sure to consider . . .

formatting
Technical Skills Computer programs and lab skills, for example. Some employers want to see computer compe-

writing &
tence, even for non-technical positions.
Research Includes title, organization, location, project Demonstrates specialized knowledge, as well
emphasis and outcome, and skills used. as technical and analytical skills.
Professional Activities Publications, presentations, and association Shows leadership and advanced knowledge.
memberships.

a tasty
Language Skills Foreign languages in which you are fluent List only if relevant to the job.

letter
cover
enough to conduct business.
Also consider
Activities/ Community Involve- List dates, titles if any, organization, location. Can reveal leadership, teamwork skills, drive for
ment results; most useful if skills are relevant to job.

delivery
Travel Lists major experiences abroad, dates, and Good for international positions, or to explain

digital
whether travel was through affiliated organiza- time gaps in work history.
tions or independent.
Interests List those in which you are accomplished or Gives fuller picture of candidate; controversial
that might interest the employer. interests not advisable; takes space away from

research
work-related accomplishments.

great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 35


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Dont Ruin the


Recipe
on your

Buzzword Bozos and Other


mark

Offenders

Weve advised you at length about what recruiters simplify so as to make your role and responsibilities
recipe for

do like to see on your resume. Now lets take a clearer, rather than more obscure. Also, be very sure
success

moment to highlight some stuff they dont like to see. that the title you choose is the one that your former
Heres a line up of bad resume chefs and a discussion employer or reference will confirm that you had while
of their primary offensives. If your resume exhibits at their organization.
any of the following negative traits, it runs a high risk
formatting

of being tossed in the no pile, no matter how strong The Liar


writing &

your qualifications are. Frighteningly enough, many insiders we talked to said


they had caught individuals lying about everything
The Buzzword Bozo from what degrees they had earned to where they
Buzzword bozos use words in the wrong context or had earned them to where they had worked. One
words that arent meaningful in an attempt to sound remembered a candidate from a top finance school
a tasty

letter

savvy. If you claim to have been responsible for who lied about being on the board of a prominent
cover

re-engineering the audit approval process, you charity. It so happened that the insiders spouse was on
risk appearing more naive than you are. After all, that board, which made for a very interesting dinner
re-engineering is just another word for changing, table conversation that evening, and an awkward
and audit approval process is redundant. Why phone call to the candidate the next day. Needless to
delivery
digital

not lose approval and claim to have changed say, he was not invited for an interview.
the audit process? Also keep in mind that you can be fired at any
point during your employment with a company if they
The Experience Inflator discover that you falsified your job search documents.
The biggest mistake insiders note is the tendency
research

to overstate experience. Yeah, we know everyone The Jack of All Trades


great

exaggerates their experience to some extent, but Resumes lacking focus are big losers. They include
insiders tell us that if a resume looks too good to be mentions of membership in seven different clubs
true, it probably is. Therefore, most of them look at a without a leadership position in any of them;
resume to
interview

glowing resume with a heavy dose of skepticism. Yes, experience in five industries in the past four years;
do sell yourself and showcase your talents, but do it and in-depth knowledge of marketing, sales,
without going overboard. manufacturing, finance, and information systems.
Yeah, right. Avoid looking like a dilettante. Groom
The Title -Titillator your resume so it highlights skills and experiences
REFERENCE

Title titillators think a fancy title will make their specifically related to a career in investment banking.
FOR YOUR

experience sound better. Consider the very impressive-


sounding title Director of Strategic Operations.
What on earth does that mean? When in doubt,

36 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
a tasty
at a 30 seconds on your recipe for writing & cover digital great resume to FOR YOUR
glance to satisfy mark success formatting letter delivery research interview REFERENCE

37
WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE
Writing and
Formatting

5
Your Resume
How Long Is Too Long?.............. 40
Polishing Your Prose................... 40
Top-Level
Formatting Guidelines................ 43
Resume Layout........................... 50
Special Cases............................... 58
Sample Resumes......................... 66
Summary of Resume
Dos and Donts........................... 82
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

How Long Is Polishing


Too Long? Your Prose
on your

Grab your resume master list! Its time to get Lets face it: Youll never fit everything youd like to
mark

down to the nitty-gritty and create your actual say onto a one- or two-page resume. That means you
resume. This chapter will show you how to polish your need to choose powerful, effective words that deliver
prose and how to format your resume in a way that your message quickly and concisely. Keep the phrase
recipe for

enables others see you as the skilled and competent At a Glance in mind as you write. Your goal is to
success

professional you really are. distill everything you need to say into a few carefully
So how long should your resume be? After all, chosen words and bullet-pointed sentences that are
your resume master list is probably chock-full of great easy to scan. Lets look at how to use language to help
information that runs for several pages. Frankly, there you accomplish this goal.
formatting

isnt a consistent rule about how short or long a resume


writing &

should be; the optimal length depends on your level Keep It Brief
of experience and the expectations of the profession Less is more when it comes to writing your
or industry that youre targeting. Although some resume statements. Big blocks of text composed
guidebooks assert that a resume should never be longer of meandering sentences make it hard to pick out
than one page, experienced professionals may need essential information. Remember, if you cant scan your
a tasty

letter

more space than that to explain their background. resume in 30 seconds, neither can a recruiter or hiring
cover

Heres a good rule of thumb: Entry-level manager. So write sentences that are short and simple,
candidates and those with five or fewer years of and that develop a single carefully targeted point.
experience should limit their resumes to one page.
Experienced professionals should write no more than For the purposes of a resume, this sentence
delivery

is trying to say too much:


digital

two pages. Only curricula vitae (see the Special Cases


discussion later in this guide) or resumes for upper- Gained new accounts by developing and
level executives with extensive track records should maintaining relationships with key decision
exceed two pages. makers in various markets generating $1.7 million
revenue in the form of online subscriptions.
research
great

It works much better when broken out into


two shorter points:
Increased client base by 20% in the community
resume to
interview

college, university, and vocational school markets.

Generated $1.7 million in revenue through


development of new accounts.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

40 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Keep It Simple Use the Active Voice
Dont try to impress recruiters with trendy business To craft a powerful resume, write it using active voice.
jargon. Your achievements should speak for themselves Active voice makes you the actor of your statements
without relying on fancy rhetoric to inflate their value. instead of a passive bystander. Moreover, using active
Even entry-level candidates with little work experience voice prevents excessive wordiness and helps to keep

on your
can write impressive resume statements based on non- your statements brief, clear, and simple.

mark
work activities or achievements.
This statement casts the applicant in
This sentence needs an antacid: a passive light as if the promotion just

recipe for
Strategized and enacted superior implementation happened along:

success
systems and procedures to leverage increased Selected as interim supervisor for 1012
results of positive residential client base feedback, employees. (that is, Somebody else did the selecting.)
instituting a resulting increase of 100%.
Rewriting in active voice gives the candidate

formatting
The straightforward approach is much much more credit for the activity:

writing &
more impressive: Managed 1012 employees as summer interim
Developed streamlined in-home installation supervisor. (that is, The candidate did the
process, reducing customer complaints by half. managing.)

Be Specific Write in the First Person

a tasty
letter
Never use general terms to describe your experience Your resume is a direct message from you to a

cover
or achievements. After all, youre trying to stand out potential employer. Therefore, you need to write your
from all the other candidates, not blend in with them. achievement statements from the first-person point-
Use concrete and specific language, and use numbers of-view. To save space and prevent wordiness, however,
and hard facts wherever possible. Instead of, managed its okay to remove the I from your statements.

delivery
digital
many important client accounts, write, managed 30
accounts averaging more than $200,000 each. This statement of qualifications is still clear,
even without the I:
This statement is fairly vague: Marketing professional with 7 years
Logged daily customer inquiries and forwarded experience; specialize in research and strategy

research
them to appropriate personnel. development for privately funded organizations;

great
earned community service award through
Watch how adding a little detail can turn a accomplishments in nonprofit fundraising.
basic responsibility into an achievement:
Remove Unnecessary Words
resume to
Maintained companys customer-focused interview

reputation by processing 3040 detailed inquiries To further tighten your resume writing, remove articles
daily, prioritizing and managing inquiry routing. (a, an, the), helping verbs (have, had, may, might),
forms of to be (am, is, are, was, were), and pronouns
(its, their) from your resume statements. These extra
REFERENCE

words will be assumed by the reader.


FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 41


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Unnecessary words make this statement


too long:
Have assisted the faculty of the engineering Nov. 2003present
department with its research for publications in Account Manager, Millburg Group
academic journals.
on your

Manage sales incentive program comprising


mark

200 retailers with 300+ employee partici-


This revision is much tighter:
pants.
Assisted engineering department with research
published in various academic journals. Oversee marketing strategy for agencys
recipe for

biggest client (Krandle Motors); helped client


success

Keep Track of Tense achieve two consecutive years of record-


Make sure to describe your past duties and breaking new product sales.
achievements in the past tense, and your present Develop program-marketing materials;
duties and achievements in the present tense. For achieved 20% new client acquisition by
formatting

example, if youre listing activities at your current job,


writing &

second quarter of 2005.


describe them in the present tense. However, when
describing accomplishments that youve completed in
your current job, you may use past tense. Inconsistent Aug. 2000Feb. 2003
use of tense is confusing and just plain sloppy. Some Marketing Manager,
job seekers hold two jobs simultaneously or hold Special Programs,
a tasty

letter

an occasional long-term side job along with their


cover

LockSpeed Marketing Group


full-time job. If you still hold the job, list that in the
present tense as well. Managed creation, production, and imple-
This example keeps track of proper verb tense from mentation of new client incentive program;
a past to a present job: new clients included 12 Fortune 500 corpora-
delivery

tions.
digital

Helped sales force achieve 35% higher sales


volume through highly effective support
tools, methodologies, and proposals.
research

Implemented corporate PR strategies, in-


great

creasing publicity by 20% and securing mul-


tiple industry awards, including Best Creative
Agency in Southern California.
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

42 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Chek Youre Speling Guideline One: Use Formatting to
Our insiders said one typo wouldnt disqualify a Boost Clarity
candidate, but several typos probably would. On the Recall our earlier discussion on good design: your goal
other hand, any typo is a good enough reason to nix is to help the reader grasp key content quickly, not
a candidate and, depending on the readers mood marvel at your unusual formatting choices. So, we

on your
and level of patience, a typo might be just the excuse recommend:

mark
needed to whittle down that pile. Use your spell A single, standard font: Times New Roman, Arial,
checker, but also be sure to proofread carefullyspell or something similar
checkers wont catch homonyms (there vs their)

recipe for
or misused contractions (your vs youre). And the A readable font size: 12-point preferred, and no

success
spell checker cant catch mistakes in the names of smaller than 10.
companies. Have a friend or two proofread your
resume before you send it out. Neutral paper color: white, off-white, or ivory.

formatting
Standard layout: one-inch margins (or larger),

writing &
Top-Level left-aligned lines, and line spacing between
sections.

Formatting And just so you dont forgetaim for one page

Guidelines in length!

a tasty
letter
cover
Bear in mind that dense blocks of type are hard to
Weve already discussed the fact that your scan and can hurt the readability of your resume. Even
resume will need to make an impact if its going to though youre distilling many qualifications onto a
stand out from the crowdbut we need to add a dash single sheet, less is still more. Aesthetically speaking,

delivery
digital
of nuance to this picture. In most fields and industries, your resume should have as much white space between
submitting a resume with fanciful formatting or its sections as you can afford, and the sections should
unconventional structure is a sure way to stand be smoothly balanced across the page.
outand to torpedo your chances. Above all, resist the temptation to use excessive text
In the case of your resume, superior formatting formatting, graphics, or a matrix or graph. Such extras

research
promotes quick scanning. It directs the eye to the eat up space that could be dedicated to trotting out

great
key bits of information. To the reader, the design the evidence of your qualifications that will win you
should be practically subliminalit should just additional checks or points, and that will help you to
work. Thats why violating standard formatting land in the call back pile. Certainly, there are fields
resume to
and layout conventions is a bad ideait pulls the where creativity and artistry are appreciated (guerrilla interview

readers attention away from your content and raises marketing, for one), but its better to err on the
questions about your judgment. conservative side when youre not certain.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 43


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Guideline Two: Write Using When you write bulleted statements,


Bullet Points remember the following:
When it comes to the words on your resume, superior Keep them short (one line if possible).
writing is all about being concise (and using clear,
jargon-free language). One firms vice president tells Start them with action verbs.
on your

us, If you cant reduce your resume to one page, I


mark

immediately think youre unable to tell the important Structure them consistently.
from the trivial. To see the benefits of using bullets, take a look at
the following resume revision. This candidate actually
recipe for

One of the best ways to fulfill this goal is to has a long work history and impressive experience and
success

use bullets. Why? credentials. Look at the original version. What do you
Bullets make your resume easier to scan. gather after scanning the resume for 10 seconds? Not
much. Now compare the resume makeover on the
Bullets highlight key content. next page.
formatting
writing &

Bullets make your resume more concise.

Insiders tell us that hiring managers are more likely


to toss a resume into the reject pile than to spend
extra time plowing through clunky prose to find what
a tasty

letter

theyre looking for. Im impressed when someone has


cover

enough confidence to write just one line followed by


short bullet points, one hiring manager tells us. I
know candidates can bullshit their way through things
by writing prose, comments another.
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

44 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
ANYA SAHN H- (858) 555-9999; C-(858) 555-1010
2300 Lone Ridge Rd. Email: anyasahn@email.com
San Diego, CA 92126

on your
Objective To secure a position that my education, knowledge, and skills can be utilized and contribute to

mark
the benefits of the organization.

Summary Over fifteen years of experience in administrative, accounting, and financial functions in

recipe for
government agency, state and commercial organizations. Knowledge in accounts payable,

success
accounts receivable, purchasing, grants and contracts. Graduated with Master of Business
Administration. Proficiency in MS Office Package Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Access.
Proficiency in operating system such as Windows XP, IFAS, HRIS, including Graphics
software. Other qualifications include attention to details, organization, reliability, flexibility,

formatting
time management, multiple tasking, efficiency and team effort.

writing &
Experience AM PHIL Management & Healthcare Services, Inc., San Diego, CA
Administrator, January 2004 January 2005
Overall supervision of RCFE facility including resident care management, human resource
management, organizational management, and physical environmental management.

a tasty
letter
cover
SDCCD Mesa College, San Diego, CA
Adjunct Instructor, February 2003 December 2003
Taught Business course to college-level students; assessment of students performance,
calculation of grades, formulation of evaluation tests, giving lectures, record keeping

delivery
digital
of students grades and evaluation, and participation in faculty workshops and course
development programs.

SDCCD Miramar College, San Diego, CA


Accounting Technician, February 1999 February 2003

research
Duties included variety of technical and complex accounting work such as preparation of

great
financial statements and reports, analysis of accounting data for submission to the President,
Vice Presidents and Deans of Schools. Accumulation of accounting data and preparation of
narrative explanations. Identification of areas of concern for action of specific department
resume to
head and or Dean of School. Maintained and reviewed budgetary and fiscal records for more interview

than two schools comparing actual expenses against forecasts. Providing explanations of
variances as necessary. Monitoring of costs and providing frequent reports to management
regarding funds expended and available. Calculation of expenditure projections and savings.
Communicating accounting changes as necessary to operating units. Assisting in budget
REFERENCE

development and interfacing with the departments regarding budget matters and needs.
FOR YOUR

Analysis of situation independently and adopting effective course of action. Monitoring,


assigning, and verifying, appropriate budget codes, sources, and related information on

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 45


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

expenses. Researching and allocation of budget. Training, providing and communicating


information regarding faculty, adjunct instructor, and or staff hiring process.

Palomar College, San Marcos, CA


on your

Adjunct Instructor, August 2002 - January 2003


mark

Taught an Economics course to college-level students, assessment of students performance,


calculation of students grades, formulation of evaluation tests, giving lectures, record
keeping of students grades and evaluation, and participation in faculty workshops, and course
recipe for

development programs.
success

Escondido Union School District, Escondido, CA


Accounting Clerk III, February 1998 February 1999
Duties included fund accounting, review of capital project costs, management of accounts
formatting
writing &

payables of more than ten vendors, bank reconciliation, and handling of imprest account.

Source Services Corporation, San Diego, CA


Accounting Assistant, July 1997- February 1998
Duties included full cycle, full charge accounts payable functions for more than fifty vendors.
a tasty

letter
cover

Arnolds Acquisition Corporation, San Diego, CA


Accounts Payable Specialist, February 1996 June 1997
Duties included full cycle, full charge accounts payable functions for more than ten vendors.

Metro Manila Authority, Philippines


delivery
digital

Budget Officer (last held), September 1978 August 1992


Duties included budget administration, participation in all budgeting phases including
preparation, consolidation, review, execution, monitoring and control. Other responsibilities
were supervision of budget staff of 5, forecasting, reporting, research documentation, variance
research

analysis, program evaluation, planning, and administrative support to departmental directors.


great

Education Master of Business Administration, National University, 2000-2002


Accounting Program (35 units), Miramar College, 1998
Master of Public Administration (15 Units), MLQU, Philippines, 1983
resume to
interview

Bachelor of Arts, University of the East, Philippines, 1977-1981


REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

46 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
With some editing, bullet points, and simple
formatting, this resume is much easier to quickly scan
for information.

on your
ANYA K. SAHN

mark
2300 Lone Ridge Rd., San Diego, CA 92126
858-555-9999 (h) / 858-555-1010 (c) / anyasahn@email.com

recipe for
SUMMARY

success
MBA with more than 15 years of accounting, financial, and administrative experience in government
agency, state, and commercial organizations
Extensive knowledge of accounts payable, accounts receivable, purchasing, grants, and contracts
Consistent track record of efficiency, attention to detail, organization, reliability, flexibility, and

formatting
writing &
effective resource management

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE
AM PHIL Management & Healthcare Services, Inc., San Diego, CA 01/0401/06
General Manager
Oversaw all aspects of 60-patient residential care facility, from bookkeeping and scheduling to

a tasty
letter
maintaining grounds and building.

cover
Managed staff of 30 administrators and health-care professionals, including hiring, career development,
problem resolution, and scheduling.
Directed vendors responsible for maintaining supplies, facility cleanliness, patient transportation, and
repairs.

delivery
digital
San Diego Community College District, Mesa College, San Diego, CA 02/9912/03
Adjunct Instructor, Business Administration (02/0312/03)
Taught business course to groups of 2030 students.

research
Developed curriculum, including lectures, reading material, and tests; maintained even split of C- to
A-level grades.

great
Accounting Technician (02/9902/03)
Maintained and audited complex budgetary and fiscal records for several schools, comparing actual
expenses against forecasts, identifying areas of concern and suggesting solutions.
resume to
Played key role in developing $2.5 million budget, working directly with department to identify interview

available funds and address departmental needs.


Prepared monthly financial statements and reports and analyzed accounting data for direct submission
to the president, vice presidents, and deans of schools.
Performed quarterly budgetary forecasting, based on monitoring costs, tracking expenses against
REFERENCE

available funds, and calculating expenditure projections and savings.


FOR YOUR

Built data archives and provided narrative explanations of transactions.

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 47


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Palomar College, San Marcos, CA 08/0201/03


Adjunct Instructor, Economics
Taught economics course to groups of 2030 students.
Developed curriculum and assessment scale.
on your
mark

Escondido Union School District, Escondido, CA 02/9802/99


Accounting Clerk III
Performed detailed fund accounting, reviewed capital project costs, reconciled bank statements, and
recipe for

handled imprest account.


success

Managed accounts payable for more than ten vendors.

Source Services Corporation, San Diego, CA 07/9702/98


Accounting Assistant
formatting
writing &

Managed full-cycle, full-charge accounts payable for more than 50 vendors.

Arnolds Acquisition Corporation, San Diego, CA 02/9606/97


Accounts Payable Specialist
Managed full-cycle, full-charge accounts payable for vendors.
a tasty

letter

Metro Manila Authority, Philippines 09/7808/92


cover

Budget Officer
Administered $1.2 million budget and participated in all phases of budget development, including
preparation, consolidation, review, execution, monitoring, and control.
Supervised 5-person accounting staff, prioritizing projects, training, providing final review on all
delivery
digital

financial reports and documents.


Managed forecast reporting, research documentation, variance analysis, program evaluation, and
planning.
research

EDUCATION
Master of Business Administration, National University, 2002
great

Accounting Program, Miramar College, 1998


Master of Public Administration, MLQU, Philippines, 1983
Bachelor of Arts, University of the East, Philippines, 1981
resume to
interview

COMPUTER SKILLS
Proficient in Microsoft Office and various operating systems such as Windows XP, IFAS, HRIS, and assorted
graphics software.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

48 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
a tasty
at a 30 seconds on your recipe for writing & cover digital great resume to FOR YOUR
glance to satisfy mark success formatting letter delivery research interview REFERENCE

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 49


Writing & Formatting
Tips Continued on
Page 50
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Resume Chronological
This layout lists employment in reverse chronological

Layout orderthat is, the most recent experience is listed first.


The convention for many fields, especially business-
related fields, a chronological format highlights
on your

An architect will tell you that form follows continuity of experience and work history, shows
mark

function when it comes to designing a building. The progression in responsibility, and emphasizes titles
same idea should guide how you lay out your resume. and employer names.
You want to select a resume layout that reveals your This resume of a college senior follows a standard
recipe for

experience in the best possible light while minimizing chronological layout. Notice Amys effective use
success

your potential shortcomings. You can lay out your of internship and volunteer work in the resumes
resume chronologically, functionally, or using a experience section. This resume portrays a candidate
combination of both patterns. Understanding the four who possesses a compelling blend of analytical,
basic layout variations that follow, and their relative teamwork, and leadership skills.
formatting

advantages, will give you the information you need to


writing &

design a compelling resume.

Basic Chronological Layout


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letter
cover

Contact info

Education
Date, degree, school
delivery

Experience
digital

Date, title, organization (#1)


Achievement 1a
Achievement 2a

Experience
research

Date, title, organization (#2)


Achievement 1b
great

Achievement 2b

Additional information
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

50 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Amy Y. Chan
amy_chan@URL.com
Present address: 1642 Oxford Terrace, Palo Alto, CA 94305; (415) 555-5969
Home address: 1465 Kapiolani Blvd., #2222, Honolulu, HI 96817; (808) 555-7854

Education

on your
mark
Princeton University  Princeton, NJ
B.A. expected June 1999. Double major in International Relations and American  GPA: 3.9
Studies. Extensive coursework (approximately 15 credits each) in Business/Management
and Public Policy departments.
Secretary of Class of 1999. Elected by peers to plan activities that promote class

recipe for
spirit and unity among 1,200 undergraduates. Head publicity committee to promote

success
major class events.

Punahou High School  Honolulu, HI


Graduated May 1995. Class valedictorian. National Merit Scholar. Earned college credit in GPA: 4.0
English, Calculus, Physics, and Spanish.

formatting
writing &
Work Experience
Smith Communications  San Francisco, CA
Public Relations Intern
Summer 1997 to present
Work with senior account executives to manage relationships with clients in emerging
high technology and healthcare industries.
Assist with the writing, editing, production, and distribution of press materials, including

a tasty
press releases and fact sheets.

letter
cover
Conduct account-related research and compiled findings into complete coverage reports.
Develop and maintain media lists and editorial calendars.
Collaborate with office staff to devise publicity strategy and coordinate publicity
logistics for major client events.

Volunteer Center of San Diego  San Diego, CA

delivery
Director of Youth Programs

digital
Summer of 1996
Led the start-up and development of a youth volunteer program that connects 50 high
schools with community organizations in need of volunteers.
Conducted extensive research to identify participating community organizations, interview
organizations leadership, and determine their most immediate volunteer needs.
Created a comprehensive database of area schools that enabled program to effectively

research
match student volunteers and community groups.

great
West Street Library  Wellesley, MA
Library Staff
September 1995 to May 1996
Managed front desk and circulation records.
Worked part time while completing first year of college in Wellesley, MA: worked an
average of 1015 hours per week while maintaining a full course load.
resume to
interview

Personal
High degree of competency in written and spoken Spanish (founded high school Spanish
club; received first place honors at State Declamation Foreign Language Championships, 1995).
Demonstrated interest in community service initiatives (president of high school volunteer
organization; honored at 15th Annual Volunteer Awards of Honolulu).
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 51


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Functional (Skills-Based)
Basic Functional Layout This layout, which organizes your experiences by
skill sets or industry areas, is particularly suited for
career changers, people with little work experience,
Contact info or those who have large gaps in their work history.
on your

A functional resume highlights your qualifications,


mark

Skill/Experience Group #1
Achievement 1 while downplaying titles and employer names. It
Achievement 2 should always include information about work history
(including dates) in a section toward the bottom of
Skill/Experience Group #2
recipe for

the resume.
success

Achievement 3
Achievement 4 This resume follows a functional layout,
emphasizing skills and downplaying work history.
Work History Take a close look at Leticias work historyshes held
Date, title, organization #1
Date, title, organization #2 several short-term positions in varied fields and with
formatting

diverse employers (legal service, association, union,


writing &

Education and academic institutions). The functional layout


Date, degree, school emphasizes her competencies while downplaying her
employment gaps. Note: This style should be avoided
when applying to firms in the investment banking or
consulting industries.
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

52 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Leticia Roberts
Address, City, state, zip
Tel, email
SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE

on your
mark
Customer & Responded to in-coming calls for legal services agency, gave information about the
Member Services organization, assessed whether caller could be served by the agency, and directed calls or
made referrals when appropriate.

recipe for
Answered job-line inquiries for international public relations association, provided information

success
regarding job services in association regions.
Searched associations library files for communication and marketing information requested by
members, or referred members to other association resources.
Assisted international members of association with planning of chapter events; identified event

formatting
writing &
speakers and provided event materials.
Distributed materials for regional coordinators of study abroad organization, as well as for host
families and student prospects. Assisted with processing of host and student applications,
coordinated bulk mailings.
Led small tutorial group for undergraduate political science course; facilitated discussions and
advised students regarding term paper topics and writing.

a tasty
letter
cover
Computer & Proficiency with Microsoft Office (Word, Powerpoint and Excel) and the Internet
Administrative Maintained financial records for legal services agency and research and education department of
international association. Responsible for donor tracking and recognition.
Edited and updated informational and promotional materials for research and education

delivery
digital
department of international association.
Researched text books and compiled annotated bibliography to complement a syllabus for a college
introductory course in comparative politics; generated ideas for term projects.

research
WORK HISTORY
12/01-present Administrative Assistant; Child Care Law Center, San Francisco, CA

great
1/00-9/01 Members Assistant; International Association of Business Communicators, San Francisco, CA
11/99-9/00 Office Support Person; ASPECT Foundation, San Francisco, CA
11/98-4/99 Membership Services Officer; National Union of Teachers, United Kingdom

resume to
1/98-5/98 Teaching Assistant; Political Science Department, Bryn Mawr College, PA interview

Summer 1997 Coder; Medical Research Institute, Alcohol Research Group, Berkeley, CA
Summer 1996 Intern; Buck Institute/College of Marin, Kentfield, CA

EDUCATION
REFERENCE

2003 Coursework in Asian and Latin American Art History, UC Berkeley Extension
FOR YOUR

B.A. in Political Science, awarded departmental honors, Bryn Mawr College


Semester program emphasizing art history, Syracuse University in Florence, Italy

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 53


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Combination
Combination resume This type of resume includes organizational elements
Chronological/Functional from both the chronological and functional layouts,
providing the most flexibility in what you can
Contact info
emphasize. This format works best for jobseekers
on your

who may want to stick with the more traditional


mark

Date, title, organization (1st) chronological format, but need to emphasize


Skill/Experience Group 1 transferable skills, have gaps in their work history, are
Achievement 1
Achievement 2 moving into a new industry, or whose most recent job
recipe for

titles were less than impressive.


success

Skill/Experience Group 2 The Chronological/Functional layout reveals skill


Achievement 3 categories and achievements as they occurred in
Date, title, organization (2nd) each employment setting. This layout allows you to
Skill/Experience Group 3 selectively spotlight skills or types of experience you
formatting

Achievement 4 undertook for each employer, and its an especially


writing &

good choice if you want to highlight how your skills


Education
Date, degree, school and responsibilities have steadily increased during
your career.
On pages 51 & 52 is an example of a resume that
uses Chronological/Functional. Kurt Williams is
a tasty

letter

an entrepreneur and has experience in every aspect


cover

of event planning and management. Therefore, he


organizes his achievements into broad skill areas within
his position description. The resume is strong because
it emphasizes quantifiable achievements as well as
delivery
digital

professional awards/recognition.
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

54 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
a tasty
at a 30 seconds on your recipe for writing & cover digital great resume to FOR YOUR
glance to satisfy mark success formatting letter delivery research interview REFERENCE

55
WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE
See Kurt Williams

Following Pages
Resume on the
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Kurt Williams, CMP


140 15th Avenue
San Francisco, California 94121
415-555-3434
on your

kw@specialevents.com
mark

SUMMARY
Extensive experience in coordinating and organizing people, projects, and events
recipe for

Highly skilled at developing and implementing program and marketing strategies


success

Proven track record of completing multiple projects accurately and within budget
Certified Meeting Professional

AWARDS
formatting
writing &

Top 25 Meeting and Event Planners in the Bay Area (Bay Area Business Express, 2002)
Top 15 Meeting and Event Planners in the Bay Area (Bay Area Business Express, 2001)

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE
1998-present President Special Events, Inc., San Francisco, CA
a tasty

letter

Event Planning
cover

Managed meetings with 90-2500 attendees with programs ranging from two to six days
Developed, managed, and administered program budgets from $60,000-$2.9 million
Administered budget of $2.9 million, realizing $190,000 surplus
Collaborated with Program Committee in implementing abstract review and acceptance procedure
delivery
digital

Coordinated speakers scheduling, hotel arrangements, audio-visual requirements and expense


reimbursements
Managed all on-site operations
research

Trade Show
Marketed and managed all logistics of exhibitor trade shows (management of drayage, decoration and
great

security companies, exhibitor contracts and service manuals) with 12-90 vendors
Inaugurated trade show for bi-annual conference, realizing 25% net profit on $12,500 in sales
resume to
interview

Marketing
Developed promotional programs and execution of collateral materials (logo, marketing announcements,
preliminary program, call for abstracts, conference brochure, final program, show directory, conference mementos,
convention signage) for conferences of various sizes
Implemented and supervised direct mailing campaigns
REFERENCE

Wrote and edited marketing copy for product literature


FOR YOUR

Analyzed campaign results to monitor effectiveness of marketing execution

56 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Kurt Williams, CMP page 2
Fundraising
Developed sponsorship packages for bi-annual conference
Implemented and supervised sponsorship mailing campaigns

on your
Cold-called targeted sponsor list, realizing $17,500 in donations

mark
Created first-time live, silent auction, resulting in $14,000 income
Developed cold-calling process for first-time trade show, selling 14,000 square feet, generating $12,500
in revenue

recipe for
success
Personnel Management
Trained and directed registration team in handling of receipts, confirmations, cancellations
Trained and managed paid staff and volunteer teams of up to 30 people

formatting
writing &
1997-1999 Projects Coordinator Golden State University, Fairfax, CA

Event Planning
Coordinated and organized annual weeklong short course exceeding projected attendance by 30%,
resulting in 29% increase in net profits
Managed visiting and distinguished lecturers, including travel, hotel, and dinner arrangements

a tasty
letter
cover
OTHER EXPERIENCE
1996-1997 Production Manager Digital International, Fairfax, CA
1989-1995 Journeyman Lithographer Colorgraph, San Francisco, CA
1987-1989 President 5 Dimension Printing, San Francisco, CA

delivery
digital
PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS
1. Meeting Professionals International
2. Professional Convention Management Association (local chapter Board of Directors)

research
COMPUTER SKILLS

great
Macintosh platform: Microsoft Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Outlook, Filemaker Pro, PageMaker, QuarkXPress
PC platform: Microsoft Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Outlook, Filemaker Pro, Lotus

resume to
EDUCATION interview

1985 B.A., University of California, Irvine


REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 57


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Special Cases Office of Admissions/


Physical Education Department,
The classic career trajectory used to mean
Fall 2005 and 2006
staying with one company or industry and working
on your

from entry-level assistant to associate to partner, or Orientation Coordinator


mark

some equivalent sequence of duties and titles. In this (Public Relations)


model, work experience was continuous and reflected Conceived role of public relations representa-
a progression of responsibility. While this career path tive for the Sports Complex to enhance the
recipe for

remains the perceived ideal for both employers and


success

orientation process; was appointed by the


job seekers, the reality, in most circumstances, is quite A.D. as Czar of PR.
different. Todays job seekers often hold positions in
a variety of settings, begin their careers after taking Won approval for Sports Complex as site of
time to explore their options, or balance personal goals Bop Tilya Drop orientation bash.
formatting

(like travel or raising children) along with their career


writing &

Convinced cheerleaders (male and female) to


pursuits. Employers are currently more open than lead Sports Complex tours.
ever before to alternatives to the traditional model of Increased Sports Complex usage by more
professional development. Of course, your resume has than 15% in first year alone. (See enclosed
a key role in explaining why your past experiences give letter by A.D. citing personal contribution as
you the necessary qualifications for your future job(s). key to exempting S.C. from budget cuts.)
a tasty

letter
cover

Lack of Work Experience


If you dont have enough experience, expand your
definition of experience to include paid, non-paid,
volunteer, community service, political, tutoring,
delivery
digital

sports, and activities within your religious community.


You can even feature classroom experiences if they
support your career goal.
Following is an example of a project a student
created as a lark. The only pay was a few extra perks
research

around the gym, but look how well it turned out


great

on his resume:
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

58 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Many students do something for their departments,
for a branch of student government, or for a student
Sample Projects
organization. Sometimes this kind of unstructured
work can round out the rest of your experience Analyzed all sectors of the Norsk Hydro
rather nicely. conglomerate in Norway, including industry

on your
Heres how one student sold her classroom research and competitive trends, financial management

mark
as interesting experience to employers: strengths, corporate infrastructure, and histori-
cal performance.
Prepared comprehensive country profile of

recipe for
success
Brazils business climate as part of feasibil-
ity analysis of investment and joint-venture
potential.
Developed study of cross-cultural orga-

formatting
nizational behavior investigating corporate

writing &
communications protocols using Pakistan as a
model.

a tasty
letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 59


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Changing Your Career Focus


If you suspect that the only people who get interviews
are those who are already in the industry, youre partly
right. Certainly, many organizations are biased toward
experienced professionals who can plug in and go.
on your

However, employers need to continually bring in new


mark

talent. Therefore, if you havent already developed


a track record in an organization, industry, or field,
you should try for the next best thing: demonstrating
recipe for

that youve done the same type of work, albeit in a


success

different context.
How can you do this? Take a look at the following
examples. This applicant has recent experience in
sales, but he would like to capitalize on his knowledge
formatting

of recruitment management systems to pursue


writing &

opportunities in human resources. Lets look at how


he repackaged his skills to shift in order to transition
to a new career.
This resume excerpt showing the candidates
employment history reveals the candidates sales-
a tasty

letter

oriented experiences and achievements:


cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

60 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Recruitment Management, Inc., Charlotte, NC
03/06 to present
Sales Manager

on your
Manage national sales process from lead generation to close for recruitment management system, recruit-

mark
ment research, and recruitment marketing products. Continually strengthen knowledge of current trends in
recruitment. Represent company at major industry conferences.
Accomplishments:

recipe for
success
Fastest close in company history (2 weeks).
Continuous production of pipeline with more than $1M value.
Personally manage more than 60% of new clients.

formatting
Four consecutive quarters exceeding quota (total sales greater than $675,000).

writing &
Anderson Labs, Boston, MA
04/04 to 02/06
Pharmaceutical Sales Representative

a tasty
letter
cover
Managed a customer base of 150 physicians with varied specialties: emergency medicine, GI, internal
medicine, otolaryngology, and primary care. Promoted three strategic growth products in CNS (psychosis
and Alzheimers disease) and gastroenterology. Served as district coordinator for one promoted prod-
uct. Mentored new hires within district and assisted district manager with recruitment and interviewing.

delivery
Facilitated and presented product sales meeting presentations for district. Led district conference calls on

digital
business analytics.
Accomplishments:
Ranked #1/4 in district, #2/24 in region, and #26/500 in nation01/06.

research
10 consecutive months of sales growth04/05 to 02/06.

great
#1/500 market share and YTD growth02/05.
Six consecutive months with greater than 200% to quota09/05 to 02/06.
Top 10% of national sales force10/04 to 02/06.
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 61


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Here is the same employment record repackaged in


a new resume to emphasize human resources-oriented
skills, responsibilities, and aptitudes:
on your
mark
recipe for
success

Recruitment Management, Inc., Charlotte, NC


03/06 to present
Recruitment Consultant
formatting

Continually strengthen knowledge of current trends in recruitment. Manage national distribution process
writing &

for recruitment management system, recruitment research, and recruitment marketing products. Repre-
sented company at SHRM, EMA, and Spring ERExpo (Electronic Recruiting Exchange) conferences.
Accomplishments:
Four consecutive quarters exceeding productivity goals.
Recruited new client in fastest time in company history.
a tasty

letter
cover

Anderson Labs, Boston, MA


04/04 to 02/06
delivery

Pharmaceutical Sales Representative


digital

Managed a customer base of 150 physicians. Mentored new hires within district and assisted district
manager with recruitment and interviewing. Facilitated and presented product sales meeting presenta-
tions for district.
research

Accomplishments:
great

2004 Region Diversity Coordinatorappointed by Region Business Director.


2005 Region Leadership Advisory Councilelected by peers.
District Impact Award WinnerQ1 2005.
resume to
interview

District & Region Synergy Award WinnerQ2, Q3 2005.


Region Top Performance Club06/05 to 07/05, 09/05.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

62 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
As you can see, this candidate is focusing on the The Curriculum Vitae: When a
transferable skills and experiences that can translate Resume Wont Do
from one field to another. If youre facing a similar Used in science and academia, or for executive-level
challenge, be sure to articulate your career goals industry positions, the CV is a formal list of all
clearly and convincingly. professional endeavors. There is no limit to the length

on your
of a CV. An objective, a summary, travel, and interests

mark
Uh-Oh, Wrong Degree! are not typically included. CVs used for non-scientific
Lets say youve completed a degree in music history, or non-academic positions may include personal
but now youve decided to pursue a career in financial information such as age, marital status, and nationality.

recipe for
services. Do you need to go back to school and start Here is an outline for a typical academic CV:

success
all over again? Absolutely not! List your school and the
type of degree you received, but omit the major:

Stanford University, Stanford, California


Basic CV Layout, page 1

formatting
writing &
Bachelor of Science, 2007

Contact info
No matter what your major, you can feature
the coursework that is related to the field you have Education
targeted, as in this example: Date, degree, school

Skill/Experience Group 1

a tasty
letter
Michigan State University,

cover
Date, title, organization (1st)
Bachelor of Science, 2005 Achievement 1
Date, title, organization (2nd)
Coursework included: Achievement 2
Financial & Management Accounting
Skill/Experience Group 2

delivery
digital
Statistics & Statistical Analysis Date, title, organization (3rd)
Achievement 3
Research Methodologies for Social Scientists Date, title, organization (4th)
Achievement 4

research
Basic CV Layout, page 2

great
Skill/Experience Group 3
Date, title, organization (5th)
Achievement 5
resume to
interview
Publications
Date, title, publisher (1st)
Date, title, publisher (2nd)

Professional Affiliation
REFERENCE

Date, title, organization (1st)


FOR YOUR

Honors/Award
Date, title, organization (1st)

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 63


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

This sample of a CV is for a doctoral student in the sciences. Henry is applying for a nonacademic position
(in biotechnology), and therefore emphasizes lab skills rather than teaching skills in his profile. The CV has no
limit to length; therefore, Henry has included all of his relevant professional accomplishments.
on your
mark

Henry A. I. Yee

Dept. of Cellular & Molecular Pharmacology Phone: 415.555.2345 (H)


recipe for

Box 0455 415.555.5555 (W)


success

University of California, San Francisco email: henryy@cgl.ucsf.edu


San Francisco, CA 94143-0455
_____________________________________________________________________________________________
formatting

Profile
writing &

Bio-organic / medicinal chemist with experience in synthetic organic chemistry, biochemistry, and molecular
and structural biology
Designed and synthesized myeloid hormone receptor antagonist
Identified structural determinants of selective myelomimetics
a tasty

letter

Education
cover

University of California, San Francisco 1996-Present


Program in Biological Science (PIBS) Ph.D. program
Specialization: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Anticipated Graduation Date: February 2003
delivery
digital

University of British Columbia 1991-1995


B.Sc. Combined Honours Chemistry and Biochemistry

Skills
research
great

Chemistry: Multi-step chemical synthesis, water- and air-sensitive reactions, analytical and prep. HPLC,
flash chromatography, 1HNMR and 13CNMR spectroscopy
Molecular Biology: Transient transfection transactivation assays in mammalian cells, PCR, SDS- PAGE,
subcloning and site-directed mutagenesis
resume to
interview

Computer: Irix, Linux and Mac OS X system administration, SYBYL, MidasPlus, Molscript, Raster3D,
experienced Macintosh user, some perl and shell scripting and Windows experience

Research Experience
University of California, San Francisco 1997-Present
REFERENCE

Graduate Student
FOR YOUR

Research Advisor Prof. Thomas Smith

64 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Design and Synthesis of Myeloid Hormone Receptor Antagonists
Designed a small molecule myeloid hormone receptor (TR) antagonist by combining the long alkylamide side chain
of the estrogen receptor antagonist ICI-164,384 with the myelomimetic GC-1. Prepared several GC-1 analogues with
substituents at the carbon atom that bridges the two aromatic rings via 10 to 14 linear step syntheses. Found that HY-

on your
4, the analogue bearing the same side chain as ICI-164,384, bound to MR in vitro and also behaves as a competitive

mark
antagonist in transactivation assays.

Structural Determinants of Selective Myelomimetics

recipe for
Determined the structural features of the myelomimetic GC-1 that confers its 10-fold preference for binding to the beta

success
isotype of MR in a study comparing GC-1 to 3,5-dimethyl-3-isopropyl-L-thyronine (L-DIMIT), the non-selective
myelomimetic from which GC-1 was designed. Synthesized analogues of GC-1 and DIMIT bearing only one of
their two structural differences. Receptor binding and transactivation studies of the analogues demonstrate that the
oxyacetic acid side chain of GC-1 is the key determinant for its MR selectivity.

formatting
writing &
Publications
Yee, H.A.I., Maynard, J.W., Boxer, J.D. & Smith, T.S. (2003). Structural determinants of selective myelomimetics. J.
Med. Chem., in Press
Yee, H.A.I. & Smith, T.S. (2002). Selective myeloid hormone receptor modulators. Curr. Top. Med. Chem., in press.
Yee, H.A.I., Ng, N.H. & Smith, T.S. (2002). Design and synthesis of nuclear hormone receptor ligands. Methods

a tasty
letter
cover
Enzymol., in press.
Yee, H.A.I., Maynard, J.W., Boxer, J.D. & Smith, T.S. (2001). A designed antagonist of the myeloid hormone receptor.
Bioorganic Med. Chem. Lett. 111, 3821-3825.
Smith, T.S., Yee, H.A.I., Ng, N.H. & Castelli, G. (2001). Selective myelomimetics: Tissue selective myeloid hormone
analogs. Curr. Op. Drug. Disc. Devel. 94, 314-322.

delivery
digital
Castelli, G., Ng, N.H., Yee, H.A.I. & Smith, T.S. (2000). Improved synthesis of the iodine-free myelomimetic GC-1.
Bioorganic Med. Chem. Lett. 101, 3607-3611.
Yee, H.A.I, Castelli, G., Mitchison, T.J. & Smith, T.S. (1998). An efficient substitution reaction for the preparation of
myeloid hormone analogues. Bioorganic Med. Chem. 8, 179-183.

research
Castelli, G., Maynard, J.W., Yee, H.A.I., Boxer, J.D., Ribeiro, R.C.J. & Smith, T.S. (1998). A high-affinity subtype-
selective agonist ligand for the myeloid hormone receptor. Chem. Biol. 59, 399-406.

great
Tanaka, S.H., Yee, H.I., Ho, A.W.C., Lau, F.W., Westh, P. & Koga, Y. (1996). Excess partial molar entropies of alkane-
mono-ols in aqueous solutions. Can. J. Chem. 714, 3313-3321.

resume to
Patents interview

Smith, T.S., Yee, H.A.I, Castelli, G., & Mitchison, T.J. (2000). Myeloid hormone analogues and methods for their
preparation. U.S. Patent No. 4,220,000.
Smith, T.S., Castelli, G., Yee, H., Maynard, J., Boxer, J.D. & Ribeiro, R.C.J. (1999). Selective myeloid hormone
analogs. U.S. Patent No. 5,444,444.
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 65


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Sample Emphasis on Education and


Activities

Resumes A standard chronological layout is employed to


emphasize Joses activities rather than employment
history. This layout works well for someone without
on your

The resumes in this section demonstrate a variety a lot of work experience, or whose volunteer and
mark

of formats, fields, and professional levels. The examples personal endeavors reflect more relevance and
here are not intended to be copied word for word, responsibility than his or her employment. Jose is
but instead should offer you ideas for creating concise currently a student and therefore lists education and
recipe for

statements that reflect your strengths. These resumes related coursework first on his resume. Additionally,
success

contain fictionalized names and organizations, but adding an Objective section helps set the tone for the
the information is based on real work histories and readerthe information that follows will be viewed
position listings. in terms of how it supports the objective (in this case,
a career in business administration). This format is
formatting

particularly useful for students and individuals with


writing &

steady and relevant work histories.


a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

66 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Jose Ramirez | jram2@unlv.edu

Permanent Address: Campus Address:


247 Lissom Road, Chicago, IL 30123 201 Lincoln Ave., Las Vegas, NV 89154
(773) 555-1333 (702) 444-4444

on your
mark
OBJECTIVE:
Summer internship in the field of Business Administration

EDUCATION

recipe for
success
University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) Fall 01 present
Bachelor of Arts, expected May 2005
Major: Sociology, Minor: Economics, GPA: 3.1
Related Coursework: Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Probability & Statistics, Statistical Methods in Economics,

formatting
Financial Accounting

writing &
ACTIVITIES
Undergraduate business society, UNLV Fall 02 Spring 03
Developed externship opportunities for sophomores and juniors. Contacted professionals in financial and consulting
firms and made arrangements for student placements. Updated student members on current events pertaining to
business opportunities and networking; sponsored informational seminars, workshops and speakers.

a tasty
letter
cover
Center For Volunteer Action, UNLV Fall 01 Spring 03
Helped in local non-profit organizations in Las Vegas. Various short-term projects included: tutoring inner-city kids
in multiple subjects, refurbishing dilapidated playground and recreational building, soliciting food donations, and
distributing goods to homeless shelters and soup kitchens.

delivery
digital
EXPERIENCE
Intern, Crate & Barrel, Chicago, IL Summer 02
Participated in weekly staff meetings with retail recruiting team, assisted in organizing summer staff orientations
and programs. Created fall schedule for university campus recruiters. Reserved booths at local college job fairs, and
arranged rental car and hotel accommodations for recruiters.

research
great
Server, Rocket Cafe, Chicago, IL Summer 02
Provided friendly customer service in neighborhood restaurant. Worked efficiently as member of team in all aspects of
restaurant operations. Assisted owner/chef in preparing nightly specials, took customer orders, bussed all tables.

resume to
interview
Camp Counselor, HoopSters Basketball Camp, Chicago, IL Summer 01
Supervised and led activities for youth ages 7-11. Assisted basketball coaches in training and instruction of
children.

COMPUTER SKILLS
REFERENCE

Familiar with Microsoft Office, HTML, Javascript, and internet search engines
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 67


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Balancing of Education,
Memberships, Experience and
Honors
This resume is technically a chronological layout, but
works something like a combo resume by emphasizing
on your

Marlenes education, professional memberships, and


mark

honors and activities, along with aspects of her work


experience. The objective statement indicates her
short-term goal, as well as a long-term commitment
recipe for

to her chosen career patha wise move, as many


success

employers hire full-time entry-level employees from


their intern pool. Including her availability at the
bottom of the resume is also helpful to recruiters who
might be planning for the long term, as well. Also,
formatting

Marlene cleverly includes a note about financing her


writing &

own education through scholarships, showing that she


is not only an excellent performer but a self-starter.
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

68 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Marlene Whitney | m_whitney@email.edu
Current Address: Permanent Address:
2323 Putnam Road, University, MS 38677 161 Terra Place, Brandon, MS 39047
(662) 555-4444 (601) 555-5555

on your
_________________________________________________________________________________________________

mark
Objective To obtain an internship and eventually full-time employment in the field of marketing

Education University of Mississippi, University, MS

recipe for
success
Bachelor of Business Administration Expected May 2007
Major: Marketing; Minor: Management
Major GPA: 3.78/4.00
Financed 100% of education with academic scholarships

formatting
writing &
Professional American Marketing Association
Membership Designed and implemented marketing plan for University of Mississippi Speech and Hearing Center,
resulting in a 20% increase in fundraiser attendance

Work Experience Marketing Assistant and Sales Representative Summer 2005
User Friendly, Madison, MS
Increased product exposure to individual market segments by designing and

a tasty
letter
cover
distributing strategic marketing collateral
Boosted customer walk-in rate with innovative merchandizing, such as compelling
window and counter displays
Grew stores customer base through one-on-one interactions with clientele,
highlighting product features and sales information targeted to each individual

delivery
digital
Facilitated product repair flow, recording detailed information and serving as
liaison between customers and vendors

Design Assistant Summer 2002
R. Scott Multimedia and Design, Ridgeland, MS

research
Improved firms design productivity by performing detailed preliminary work, such as importing and

great
formatting graphics and text in various design applications (e.g., InDesign, PhotoShop, Illustrator)

Honors & Sally McDonnell-Barksdale Honors College (August 2003 to December 2005)
Activities Chancellors Honor Roll (3.75 GPA or higher), one semester
resume to
interview
National Merit Scholar
University of Mississippi Luckyday Merit Scholarship
University of Mississippi Academic Excellence National Merit Scholarship
Boys and Girls Clubs of Oxford (2005)

REFERENCE

Availability Internships: Summer 2006


FOR YOUR

Permanent employment: May 2007

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 69


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Blending Academic and Work


Experiences
Treys resume displays a good synergy between his
objective statement, education, skills, and experience.
Trey combined academic and work experience under
on your

one heading, as the academic work applies directly


mark

to his stated objective. His relevant degree and high


GPA are emphasized with bolding. Inclusion of Treys
honors and activities shows that there is more to him
recipe for

than just his education.


success
formatting
writing &
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

70 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Trey Arnold Santin tasantin@email.com
Current Address: 1780 Alexander Avenue Apt. 2B, Washington, D.C. 20009 (202) 555-2222
Permanent Address: #88 5th Dr., West Mount Road Champs Fleurs, Trinidad, W.I. (868) 555-7777

OBJECTIVE

on your
To obtain a summer internship in the sciences that will allow me to put my theoretical education to practical applications

mark
EDUCATION
B.S., Chemical Engineering, expected May 2008, Howard University, Washington, D.C., GPA: 3.88

recipe for
success
SKILLS
Five years experience with chemistry laboratory procedures
Turbo Pascal, C++, HTML, and PeopleSoft
Familiar with Windows and Macintosh platforms: Word, Excel, and PowerPoint

formatting
Basic written and verbal French

writing &
EXPERIENCE
Howard University, Department of Chemical Engineering
Undergraduate Research Assistant, September 2005 to present
Work directly with professor on fuel cell membrane research
Carefully document experiments to track and evaluate research progress

a tasty
Draw on laboratory knowledge and experience to select apparatus and procedures and perform experiments

letter
cover

Howard University Trio Programs, Washington, D.C.
Tutor-Counselor, Summer 2005
Improved students classroom performance through one-on-one tutoring sessions

delivery
Mentored and counseled high school students, improving study skills, focus, and self-esteem

digital
Coached debate teams to win 1st & 3rd place in Annual Trio Day

Telecommunications Services of Trinidad & Tobago, Belmont, Trinidad, W.I.
Customer Service Representative, August 2003 to June 2004

research
Managed approximately 400 customer accounts, preparing invoices, processing service orders, and selling product upgrades

great
HONORS & ACTIVITIES
Founders Scholarship, Howard University, 2004 to present
CEACS Alumni Network Scholarship, 2005
National Society of Collegiate Scholars, 2004 to present
resume to
interview
Corning Corporate Team Adoption Team Member, 2005 to present
HUSA International Student Liaison, 20052006
Conference Planning Chair, NSBE, 20052006
Telecommunications Co-Chair, NSBE, 20042005
Network Operator, CLDC Lab Howard University, 2004 to present
REFERENCE

Church Youth Choir Director, 20012004


FOR YOUR

Sunday School Teacher, 20022004


Volunteer, School for Disabled Children, 2001

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 71


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Using Education, Memberships,


and Experience to Support a
Career Path
Lila is currently completing her masters degree in
human resource development and looking for a job
on your

in human resources after graduation. She lists her


mark

education first to emphasize her relevant degree,


along with a list of related skills, and membership
in two human resources professional associations.
recipe for

Emphasizing these items helps direct Lilas resume


success

toward her chosen career path, since her related


work experience so far is limited. But the path is so
clear and straightforward that she could even leave
off the objective statement to make room for other
formatting

information that might apply to specific employers.


writing &
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letter
cover
delivery
digital
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great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

72 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
LILA MACINTOSH
___________________________________________________________________________________
128 Havalin Lane Philadelphia, PA 19106
215-222-9999 macintosh@email.com

on your
OBJECTIVE

mark
___________________________________________________________________________________
Seeking a human resources position that will draw on my education, relevant experience, and personal skills

EDUCATION

recipe for
___________________________________________________________________________________

success
Philadelphia University, Philadelphia, PA
Candidate: M.S. Human Resource Development (May 2007)
Glennburge University, Buffalo, NY
B.A. Psychology (Cum Laude)

formatting
writing &
PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS
___________________________________________________________________________________
Student member of the Society for Human Resource Management
Secretary for the Glennburge Chapter of SHRM

RELEVANT EXPERIENCE
___________________________________________________________________________________

a tasty
American Red Cross, Philadelphia, PA Fall 2004

letter
cover
Human Resources Assistant
Managed interview scheduling for candidates and managers
Performed screening interviews to ensure efficiency in both the recruiting process and use of managers time
Represented the organization at Meet & Greets to provide information, forms, and applications to candidates
Assessed employee fit by administering and scoring Predictive Inventory (personality assessment test) and conducting

delivery
digital
reference checks
Conducted candidate follow-ups, offering positions and scheduling physicals
Ensured all employee information was correctly handled and entered into the EEO database

Philadelphia University Human Resource Department Fall 2004

research
Graduate Student Assistant
Helped employees maintain full benefits and pay status by creating and maintaining system to track hours, sick days, and

great
time off
Determined pension enrollment eligibility by tracking employees length of service at the University
Mastered the Human Resource Information System (HRIS) to collect data regarding pension, employee assignments, and
accrued sick leave
resume to
Created and disseminated health benefit information packets interview
Managed guest list for annual employee recognition ceremony
Triaged all incoming queries to manage call volume and provide efficient customer service

SKILLS
___________________________________________________________________________________
REFERENCE

Microsoft Office: Word, Excel, Power Point, Outlook, and Access


FOR YOUR

HRIS, SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences), ABStat (statistical software), and Dreamweaver

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 73


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Emphasizing Education and


Skills over Experience
Michaels resume is a great example of the simple,
straightforward approach. He is looking to start a
career in accounting but has no past work experience
on your

in that field. In the top third of his resume, Michael


mark

highlights his accounting degree, professional


development course, relevant computer skills, and
language skills to make his case. The work experience
recipe for

is kept brief and occupies the bottom half of the


success

resume, deemphasizing it.


formatting
writing &
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

74 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
MICHAEL CHING
1735-B Lamont Street
Brooklyn, New York 11206
(718) 333-2222; (212) 444-6666

on your
m_ching17@email.com

mark
___________________________________________________________________________________

Objective Seeking a challenging entry-level position in accounting support

recipe for
success
Education Bachelor of Science, Accounting, expected May 2006
City College of New York, New York, NY

Professional Microsoft Office Specialist Expert Certification (pending)

formatting
Development

writing &
Computer Skills Quicken, QuickBooks, Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Internet research

Language Skills Bilingual English/Chinese (Cantonese and Mandarin)

Work Experience Teaching Assistant (contract) 3/055/05

a tasty
New York Chinese Baptist Church, New York, NY

letter
cover
Instructed bilingual students one-on-one in practical computer applications and
use of the Web
Perfected interpersonal communication skills by helping non-native speakers
improve English language use and understand U.S. culture

delivery
digital
Sales Representative (contract) 5/058/05
Vector Marketing, Inc., Flushing, NY
Improved professional relationship building and communication skills by
conducting public product demonstrations

research
Counter Server 1/026/02

great
Ambiente Consecutivo, Inc., Louisville, KY
Assisted in detailed inventory process, tracking supplies and
forecasting ordering needs
Served customers directly in a high-touch, fast-paced environment; consistently
resume to
interview
lauded for maintaining excellent customer relations
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 75


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

A Career-Changers Emphasis on
Skills
Heres an example of a functional layout, with skills
emphasized and work history downplayed. Bettina
is an accomplished lawyer, but is changing careers to
on your

that of program manager/administrator. She targets


mark

three top skills she believes (based on careful research!)


characterize program management. In addition to
promoting her skills, this resume reflects the industry
recipe for

and fields with which she has expertise (disability


success

rights and education).


formatting
writing &
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

76 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
BETTINA RAY MUELLER
45 Lakeshore Drive
Richmond, CA 94804
(510) 555-2773
bamueller@worldnet.att.net

on your
mark
OBJECTIVE:
Apply my distinct qualifications learned as an attorney to the field of program administration.

QUALIFICATIONS

recipe for
success
Organizational skills
Coordinated day-to-day activity in 20 class action cases involving physical access to public
accommodations

formatting
Organized litigation project concerning physical and programmatic access in California schools

writing &
Managed intake system for nonprofit law firm receiving more than 5,000 calls a year
Updated and maintained computer database of 100+ childrens advocates

Communication skills
Counseled and represented families in educational matters
Resolved families legal educational concerns through communication with school district personnel
and counsel, social workers, and probation officers

a tasty
letter
cover
Conducted workshops for community, professional, and parent groups
Conducted interviews and deposition preparation with clients

Research and writing skills


Drafted comments to proposed amendments to federal Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act

delivery
digital
Wrote federal and state memoranda of law, pleadings, and discovery
Analyzed and summarized voluminous production documents
Conducted legal research in substantive areas of education, disability, employment, and civil rights law

EMPLOYMENT

research
great
Education Law Center, Intake Attorney, Philadelphia, PA 6/01-6/02
Disability Law Project, Attorney (contract), Philadelphia, PA 3/01-5/01
Honeywell & Associates, Attorney, Philadelphia, PA 9/00-3/01
Disability Rights Advocates, Attorney, Oakland, CA 2/99-6/00
resume to
interview

EDUCATION
Golden Gate University School of Law, Juris Doctor, San Francisco, CA, May 1999
Claremont Pitzer College, Bachelor of Arts, Anthroplogy/History, Claremont, CA, May 1995
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 77


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Letting Experience Speak for


Itself
Elizabeths straightforward job history speaks for itself.
The path from her relevant education to internship to
full-time position sets up the logical next step in her
on your

career. Thus, Elizabeth uses the primary section of her


mark

resume to explain her numerous job responsibilities.


She has broken down her achievement statements by
area, making it much easier for a recruiter to scan her
recipe for

detailed accomplishments. Including her experience


success

abroad, award and honors, and other activities shows


that she is a well-rounded candidate, a trait desired by
many employers.
formatting
writing &
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

78 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
_______________________
ELIZABETH TACHINAU
16-B Pearl Creek Road, Evanston, IL 60201 | (314) 555-6666 tachinau@email.com
Experience
Midwest Investment Group, LLC, Chicago, IL June 2004present

on your
Global Operations Associate, Reconciliation and Control Group

mark
Stock Loan: Balance and settle stock loan borrows and returns for 8 international and 7 domestic accounts daily. Requires close attention
to detail to identify costly breaks, strong communication skills in speaking to traders and account reps, and vast knowledge of stock loan
product, laws, and general practices in various countries.
Improved error identification process by creating a system for compiling, sorting, and distributing all international stock loan
instructions, resulting in faster problem resolution and freeing up traders time.

recipe for
success
Streamlined training process by creating guidelines and cheat sheets to shorten learning curve; trained and mentored 3 co-workers on
daily stock loan procedures.
Billing: Audit 8 international and 7 domestic month-end prime broker bills for stock loan fees/rebates totaling $1520 million per
month.
Developed new process that consolidates all daily stock loan breaks, allowing easier identification of monthly issues to enable company

formatting
to request specific and relevant refunds.

writing &
Researched and compiled all billing processes to clarify fees being paid and determine additional resources needed.
Prime Broker Accounts: Balance cash of 5 prime broker accounts daily. Identify discrepancies that arise from trades, financing charges,
corporate actions, and dividends. Route issues to correct groups, account reps, or traders. Reconcile trade positions accounts in a timely
manner so that traders can confidently trade on accurate positions.
Futures: Balance cash and positions in same manner as prime broker accounts but on more challenging futures product, requiring an
understanding of open trade equity and commission discrepancy issues specific to futures.

a tasty
Global Finance, Inc., Chicago, IL January 2004March 2004

letter
cover
Internship, Asset Management
Designed a critical orientation and training program for new hires in the Chicago Asset Management group.
Integrated training requirements of all teams, including client service analysts, internal wholesalers, operations, distribution services,
financial control, business analysis, and compliance.
Collaborated and consulted with middle- and upper-level managers of various divisions to develop a successful training program.

delivery
Presented final product upon project completion.

digital
Generated hypothetical mutual fund performance presentations and Morningstar X-Ray literature for internal wholesalers.

Education
Northwestern University, Evanston, IL June 2005
Bachelor of Arts in Economics; minor in Spanish. Cumulative GPA: 3.70/4.00

research
great
Universidad Panamericana, Mexico City, Mexico Summer 2003
Summer study-abroad program with research concentration on Mexicos economic and political status.
Produced 20-page research paper examining the effects of NAFTA on Mexico.

Awards and Honors


resume to
interview
Invited to participate in Economics Honors Program
All-Alpha Kappa Psi Academic Team, 20032004

Activities
Career Peer, Northwestern University Career Services: Advised and educated peers on career-related issues,
REFERENCE

presented career information to groups as large as 240 people.


FOR YOUR

Peer Advisor: Directly supervised and assisted groups of incoming freshmen.


Alpha Kappa Psi Professional Business Fraternity
Alpha Chi Omega Sorority

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 79


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Highlighting a Track Record of


Increasing Responsibility
Tiana has amassed more than five years of experience
in her career and has followed a linear career path
with clear advances in responsibility and professional
on your

status. More than one page is necessary to lay


mark

out her advancement and numerous professional


accomplishments. Tiana includes a brief description
of each employer, adding further specificity to her
recipe for

achievements. This is particularly important to this


success

career path, as specific industry experience is important


in public relations. Presenting her linear work history
in this way, Tiana is clearly prepared for the next step
in her career.
formatting
writing &
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

80 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Tiana Rosa deLossi
3917 Powell Street #320 San Francisco 94115 | 415-555-3333 tianadelossi@email.com

EMPLOYMENT HISTORY
PR Account Manager, Rogue & Partners, San Francisco, CA 06/03 to present

on your
Rogue & Partners is a lifestyle PR agency serving a wide range of internationally renowned brands, including Diamond Hotels,

mark
Seasonale, and Astronica Wine Group.
Develop innovative campaign strategies by identifying message points, key media outreach, pitch points, and timelines
Secure high-profile client coverage through local, national, and international media outreach; have landed exposure on two
nationally syndicated talk shows, local news channels, and numerous national magazines

recipe for
Organize and host high-attendance media launch parties, managing all event logistics and promotion

success
Maintain relations with account base through monthly reports and presentations and secure new accounts by leveraging existing
contact relationships; have secured 5 key accounts
Craft media documents, including press releases and press packs, strategically targeting client brands to
specific markets

formatting
Publicity & Marketing Manager, Hot Iron Press, San Francisco, CA 11/0106/03

writing &
Hot Iron Press publishes award-winning illustrated lifestyle books that specialize in food, interior design, and gardening titles.
Managed national publicity campaigns from concept to completion for major title releases
Coordinated author tours, successfully booking high-profile national and local media coverage
Designed creative mailing packets and press information for national dissemination
Developed key new relationships with national lifestyle press and broadcast media through networking; built reputation though
recognition for successful campaigns

a tasty
Maintained campaign efficiency and innovation by managing freelance publicists and designers

letter
cover
Marketing & PR Officer, Raza Communications Publishing, San Francisco, CA 08/0011/01
Raza is one of the worlds largest publishers of television and film publications. The portfolio of titles includes the official magazines and
books for many of the leading entertainment brands in the U.S.
Successfully designed and implemented global corporate PR and marketing strategies using print and online media

delivery
Developed and managed key international relationships with major media producers

digital
Performed market analysis and developed future publicity strategies with company directors

PR Assistant, Extreme Motors, San Rafael, CA 04/0008/00 (contract)


During my time with the company, I gained extensive experience interacting with all sectors of the media from a political,
environmental, and lifestyle perspective. I also developed a better understanding of international public affairs and the corporate

research
culture of an international business.

great
Assisted in developing an emerging strategy to enhance company image
Helped release product information to the press, coordinate major events, and create marketing collateral

Managing Editor, Auto Media Inc, San Rafael, CA 06/9904/01

resume to
Under my management, Auto Media became Californias definitive automotive news and information source. interview
Promoted to Managing Editor after only 3 months as Marketing Executive
Increased readership by 500% per month
Developed a 5-year business plan, aiding business development and revenue generation
Designed a European launch strategy
Created, commissioned, and managed site content and marketing material
REFERENCE

Wrote/researched news stories and live reports from national events


FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 81


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Dont Do
use vague qualitative terms such as large or use numbers where appropriate to clearly describe
many, which leave the reader with questions your accomplishments, as in led a team of nine
about specifics. sales reps.
on your
mark

Dont Do
waste resume space with frivolous information, such distinguish the important from the trivial in your
as Voted mostly likely to succeed in high school. background to fit the most relevant and significant
elements onto a single page or so.
recipe for
success

Dont Do
try to differentiate yourself with an unconventional stick to a basic, clear format that helps the reader
format or tactics such as graphics and colored paper, glean information quickly and with minimal effort.
unless you are applying for a job in an arts-related
formatting
writing &

field.

Dont Do
include reasons for leaving your jobs, salary make your resume a document that focuses on your
information, full addresses of employers, or accomplishments and skills.
references on your resume.
a tasty

letter
cover

Dont Do
try to portray yourself as a jack-of-all-trades in the discuss your two or three most relevant strengths
hope that something will strike the readers fancy. and illustrate them with experience and achievement
statements.
delivery
digital

Dont Do
get caught in the passive voice trap, writing as if use the active voice with verbs that indicate youre
things happened to you. Was sent to Argentina to in charge: Represented firm at international
research

represent the firm. symposium.


great

Dont Do
refer to yourself as a subject (first or third person) begin each achievement statement with an active
in your resume: I helped prepare correspondence, verb: Handled all client correspondence.
resume to
interview

or, Applicant wrote outreach letters to prospective


clients.

Dont Do
include personal information such as your social be aware that employers are interested in
REFERENCE

security number, age/date of birth, race, or marital your eligibility to work legally and may ask for
FOR YOUR

status on your resume. documentation. Take the time to learn about your
rights and responsibilities in the workplace.

82 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
a tasty
at a 30 seconds on your recipe for writing & cover digital great resume to FOR YOUR
glance to satisfy mark success formatting letter delivery research interview REFERENCE

83
WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE
Writing a Tasty
Cover Letter

6
Pique Their Appetite................... 86
General Cover
Letter Guidelines........................ 86
The Ingredients of
Your Cover Letter........................ 88
Sample Cover Letters.................. 92
Cover Letter Dos and Donts...... 98
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Pique Their General


Appetite Cover Letter
Guidelines
on your

Like a good appetizer, all cover letters have one


mark

main purpose: to whet the readers appetite, get them


interested enough to move on to your resume, and then In cooking, basic ingredients form the start of a
want to interview you. In many cases, the cover letter good dish, but the way you combine the ingredients
recipe for

is the first thing the employer encounters about you, so also affects the outcome. The same is true for your
success

you want to make this first impression a good one. cover letter. Careful choice of words, tone, and
A cover letter should always be included aesthetics are essential to creating a pleasing product.
with your resume, whether youre prospecting a
potential employer or following up on a personal The Write Stuff
formatting

recommendation. The cover letter shows that youve Insiders tell us that cover letters are used to assess an
writing &

spent some time and thought on your application, applicants ability to write clearly and concisely. Count
and it gives you the opportunity to present a bit of on your letter receiving especially careful scrutiny if
your personality to help you stand out among other youre a candidate in a technology field or if youre
candidates. It should also show that youve a direct and an international candidate seeking a position in the
specific purpose in contacting the companythat you United States.
a tasty

letter

know who youre and what you can offer. But for anyone, mistakes in the cover letter can
cover

That said, some employers confess that they dont undermine your candidacy. All too often, applicants
read cover letters. Other employers pay no attention who tout their careful attention to detail nullify
to cover letters unless they notice a problem (poor this claim by failing to remove typos and grammatical
writing, grammatical mistakes, too generic, too long). mistakes from their cover letters. Not very careful after
delivery
digital

So, while the lack of a cover letteror a poorly written all! The bottom line is that your cover letter speaks
onecan definitely hurt you, a well-written cover volumes about your communication skills.
letter never will. And in some cases, it may be your
only ticket to the interviewing room.
So, how do you write the thing? The first thing Top Five Things Recruiters
research

to keep in mind is that, like your resume, the Look for in a Cover Letter
great

cover letter is a marketing piece that should grab


your audiences attention and sell the value of your 5. Readability
productyou. 4. A sense of the applicants personality
3. How an applicant found out about the job opening
resume to
interview

2. Something eye-catching
1. Evidence that the applicant has researched the
company
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

86 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
A Well-Tuned Tone Go beyond the resume in explaining your
The tone of your cover letter in most circumstances situation and career direction. For example: My
will be professional but thoughtful, persuasive but career goals include gaining leadership experience
restrained. Use concise sentences and be direct. At the in the delivery of financial advising services in a
same time, be sure to inject plenty of enthusiasm and private business setting. I am open to relocation

on your
genuine interest into your letter. for an appropriate opportunity.

mark
Custom Content Avoid discussing weaknesses or making excuses;
In your cover letter, include information that truly instead, concentrate on what youve to offer.

recipe for
tailors the application to a particular employer and The cover letter is not the place to confess your

success
specific job opening. Complement and reinforce mistakes or problems. For example, if youve
the qualifications presented in your resume, using been laid off, dont mention that fact. Instead,
words and phrases from the employers job listing discuss what youve done recently to be productive
and/or website. or better prepared for this job (for example,

formatting
I have recently completed training in or

writing &
Here are some points about content youll I have gained valuable marketing experience
want to keep in mind as you write your letter: volunteering with).
How you learned of the job or company is
important to recruiters and hiring managers, If salary requirements are requested in a job
especially if there is a mutual connection that can posting, discuss them in your cover letter. Its

a tasty
letter
speak of your qualifications. best not to trap yourself by naming a specific

cover
amount. Instead, say something like my salary
Demonstrate a good fit with the employers requirements are in step with the responsibilities
corporate or organizational culture. Be sure to of the position and the expertise I would offer
back up any assertions of personal characteristics your company. If an ad or job posting absolutely

delivery
digital
by describing the resulting achievement either on requires a salary figure, state a range, such as
your resume or in your cover letter. Ideally, the seeking a compensation package to include
cover letter refers to information found on your benefits and a salary in the low to mid $30s.
resume without being repetitive or redundant.

research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 87


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

The TIP

Ingredients
Avoid canned letters! Recruiters and hiring
managers tell us that formulaic letters often end
up in the no pile. The applicant who customizes

of Your Cover
his or her words is more appealing, and will be
on your

given preference over others.


mark

Letter The Basic Cover Letter Format


Fortunately, when it comes to cover letters, there is a
recipe for

There are three types of cover letters: Those general recipe to follow. Once you learn it, youll be
success

developed to respond to a specific job opening, those able to vary your approach to suit individual positions,
directed to a specific contact or company match, and industries, and employer preferences.
those that serve as letters of introduction. The latter Every cover letter should include:
type is sometimes called a broadcast letter, and it can Your contact information
formatting

function like a cold call to develop opportunities


writing &

where no immediate job opening exists. Date


While your cover letters should follow a basic
structure, its best to avoid creating a form letter. Your Employers contact information
goal is to entice employers with a clear, concise, and
well-thought-out summary that suggests that you offer Paragraph 1: Why youre writing
a tasty

letter

exactly what they need.


cover

Paragraph 2: What youve to offer them

Paragraph 3: What happens next


delivery
digital

Closing

Lets look at the three core paragraphs of your cover


letter in greater detail.
research

The First Bite: Why Youre


great

Writing
Your introduction will be the most customized part
of each cover letter you writeand yes, you will be
resume to
interview

writing a unique cover letter for every company to


which you apply! A good way to start thinking about
your introduction is to list the things that attracted
you to a particular job in the first place. Are your skills
so well suited to the job that the description practically
REFERENCE

restates your resume? Have you been using the


FOR YOUR

companys products for years? What standout features


will distinguish you from other applicants? Did a
mutual friend or colleague tell you about the opening?

88 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Were you a volunteer in the Peace Corps just as the Satisfy Their Craving: What
hiring manager was? These are the kinds of things that Youve to Offer
will pop out to a recruiterand will differentiate and After youve caught your potential employers
personalize your application. attention, its time to tell them what youve to offer.
After youve listed some of your connections or Lets repeat that: what youve to offer. It is your job to

on your
attractions to the job, draft a few openers to see which sell yourself to the employer. And that means showing

mark
approach will be the most effective. Does it have to them something youve to offer that will benefit them.
be a work of art? No. The key is to have a particular You should know what that is from the research youve
reason for contacting the company. The failure to done on the employer and about the job opening.

recipe for
state this reason is why generic cover letters raise the Think of your letter in terms of the readers

success
ire of most hiring managers. If youre sending a firm interest and put yourself in the employers shoes.
the same letter that youve sent to hundreds of other What would you be looking for? What would get
companies because youvent taken the time to find out you interested in a candidate? What are the most
about their company or the job opening, why should important qualities in a candidate for this position?

formatting
they take the time to read your application? What about your companys culture would make a

writing &
particular candidate attractive?
Following are examples of compelling The answers to these questions might include
introductory statements: specific skills, talents, experience, or contacts in a field.
While researching opportunities in the legal Dont be tempted to fill in this section by restating
field, I learned about XYZ LLPs distinguished bullet points from your resume. That would be a

a tasty
letter
record in employment law. Because your firms waste of the recruiters time. Craft a few compelling

cover
specialization matches my training, hands-on statements that describe your fit with the job so that
experience, and career goals, I am enclosing my the reader can quickly assess what youve to offer.
resume for your review. Ideally, these statements should persuade the reader to
look at your resume and find out more about you.

delivery
digital
Mark Jones, director of marketing at RBC
Company, recommended that I contact you about You might summarize your years
opportunities with your public relations team. As of experience in a trade:
supervisor during my recent internship at RBC, I bring to your company ten years of success
Mr. Jones witnessed the skills and effort I applied in delivering increased sales and profits in the

research
to producing the firms highly successful PR consumer products industry.

great
campaign for Allied Hospital Corporation. I was
excited to learn of your new healthcare clients and My strengths in both marketing and
am confident that my training and experience will management will enable me to make a significant
resume to
enable me to make a strong contribution to their contribution to your regional sales force. interview

public relations campaigns.


This job represents the perfect alignment of my
My recent BA in Biology, paid and volunteer education and experience in art history, and my
research experience, and enthusiasm for work practical marketing skills.
REFERENCE

in the environmental science field have led me


FOR YOUR

to pursue employment with your company.


Therefore, I am submitting my resume for
your consideration.

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 89


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Again, summarize and entice, but dont repeat Some Structure to Get You
your resume. Started
Now go back to the list of achievement The following is a general outline that you can use to
statements you created for your resume. Next to create your own cover letters.
that, list the particular needs of your potential The preceding cover letter outline is geared toward
on your

employer based on the job listing or your research. responding to a particular position opening. The
mark

By comparing these two lists, you should be able to format could easily be converted to a broadcast letter
prioritize the employers needs and match those to by changing the first paragraph to:
your fine qualities. I am interested in pursuing career opportunities in
recipe for

Once youve chosen your highlights, rewrite your _________ [city, state or location] office. I am
success

them into an effective paragraph that follows your currently a _________ at ____________, and it is
introduction in a way that makes sense. For example, with enthusiasm that I ask to contribute my training
you and the recruiter are both tennis enthusiasts and experience to your organization.
and youve mentioned that in your opener. Go on to
formatting

point out how your love of tennis is based on a sense


writing &

of friendly competition and precision, which are the


same qualities youve learned from your years as a
[insert job title here].

A Satisfying Finish: What


a tasty

Happens Next
letter
cover

Now that youve grabbed the recruiters attention and


gotten her interested in your qualifications, dont just
leave her hanging. Take charge and state what the
next step will be. These statements should be assertive,
delivery
digital

but not overly aggressive. Keep in mind that youre


a professional engaging in business communication
to establish a mutually beneficial relationship. Your
final paragraph can state your intention to contact
the employer to set up an interview, create a sense
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of urgency to compel the employer to contact you,


great

present an offer that the employer cannot refuse, or


any other irresistible tidbit that you can devise.
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

90 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
COVER LETTER FORMAT

Your Header
Address, Telephone, Email

on your
mark
Date

Employer Name
Title, Organization, Address

recipe for
Dear ________________________________________ :

success
[Samples: Why Youre Writing]
I am writing to submit my application for a _________________________ position in your _____________________
[city, state or location]
office. I am currently a ____________________ at ____________________ , and it is with enthusiasm that I ask to

formatting
writing &
contribute my training and experience to this exciting new position.

I have been a ____________ working on __________ for nearly __________ years, and I am committed to pursuing

a career in __________ . While I have greatly enjoyed and appreciated the opportunity to work at the forefront of

these exciting issues while at __________ , I feel the need for a personal and professional change. Your organi

a tasty
letter
cover
zation is poised to __________ , and it is truly exciting to see the __________ in your [city/location] office. This

position offers the opportunity to participate in __________ .

delivery
[Samples: What Youve to Offer]

digital
I believe that my work experience makes me well suited to assume the responsibilities of a _________ position.

[Give examples.]

As you can see from my resume, my background in __________ extends beyond my work history at __________.

research
great
As a result of my experiences, I have become a quick learner who __________ .

[Describe more skills and personal qualities that match the position.]
[Sample: What Happens Next]
I would welcome the chance to discuss this opportunity with you at your convenience. If you require any
resume to
interview

additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me via email at ___________ or by telephone

at ___-___-____. Thank you very much for your time and consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

[Your signature]
Your name
Enclosure: Resume

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 91


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Sample Cover
Letters
on your

The letters in this section demonstrate a variety


mark

of formats, fields, and professional levels. Dont take


the examples here as prescriptions. Instead, use them
as inspiration for creating concise correspondence
recipe for

that reflects your strengths. These letters contain


success

fictionalized names and organizations, but the


information is based on real work histories and
position listings.
formatting
writing &
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

92 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
LeTICIA ROBERTS
Address
City, state, zip
Telephone
Email

on your
June 10, 2003

mark
World Art Museum
200 Lafayette Street
San Francisco, CA 94100

recipe for
FAX: 415-555-9410

success
RE: Position # 436654, Membership Assistant

Dear Human Resources Administrator:

formatting
writing &
I am applying for the position of Membership Assistant with the World Art Museum. I learned of the
opportunity through your online posting on Craigslist.org, and feel that my qualifications are a good match
for the responsibilities of the position.

I have several years of customer service and administrative experience in the nonprofit community.
As Member Services Assistant for the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC),

a tasty
I responded to daily requests for the associations library services department, providing publication

letter
cover
information and resource referrals to association members and the public. I was also responsible for editing
informational and promotional materials, as well as preparing for and working on-site at the associations
annual international conference. As office support person for the ASPECT Foundation, I processed
applications to the organizations study abroad program, distributed program materials to applicants, and
used Microsoft Word and Excel extensively. These duties required strong communication skills, attention to

delivery
digital
detail, and an ability to both organize and prioritize several tasks at once.

I am very interested in education and the arts. At Bryn Mawr College, I took courses in both art and art
history, and I participated in an educational exchange program through which I studied Renaissance art
in Florence, Italy. Since then, I have taken extension courses through UC Berkeley in Asian and Latin

research
American art history.

great
As a result of these experiences, I am enthusiastic about continuing to work with nonprofits, and would like
to further explore career possibilities with public arts organizations. A position as Membership Assistant
with the World Art Museum would combine my member services and clerical skills, my interests, and my
career goals. I am confident I can be of value to your organization and the customers you serve. Please feel
resume to
interview
free to call me to set up an interview, or if you need more information. I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,

Leticia Roberts
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

Enclosure

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 93


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

A Specific Position
Although somewhat lengthy, this letter does a
thorough job of emphasizing the relevant skills and
goals of the applicant. Note that it is addressed to
Human Resources and therefore includes the job
on your

number as a subject header. Ideally, addressing an


mark

individual is preferable to just going with Human


Resources Administrator or Hiring Manager; you
can call the organization to inquire about the hiring
recipe for

persons name and title. Note, too, that the heading


success

matches the style and format of the heading the


candidate used on her resume.
formatting
writing &
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

94 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Bill Pendleton
Address
City, state, zip code

on your
Telephone

mark
Email

June 14, 2003

recipe for
success
Cathy Stevenson
McKinsey & Company
75 Park Plaza, 3rd Floor

formatting
Boston, MA 02116-3934

writing &
Dear Cathy,
Frank William suggested that I forward my resume to you for your consideration. I am a
second-year MBA student at the Krannert Graduate School of Management at Purdue

a tasty
letter
University, and I am currently working as a summer associate at Motorola in Chicago.

cover
As Frank may have mentioned, I am in the top 5% of my class at Krannert, and I was recently
elected president of the MBA student body. In and out of the classroom, I have consistently
demonstrated my capacity to make a positive impact, regardless of the situation. My analytical

delivery
digital
and personal skills are ideally suited to management consulting, and I am confident that I
would be an asset to McKinsey & Company.

I will call you next Wednesday to discuss next steps. If youve any questions regarding my

research
resume or qualifications, please do not hesitate to call. I look forward to speaking with you.

great
Sincerely,

resume to
Bill Pendleton interview

Enclosure
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 95


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Personal Contact
This letter is quick and to the point. The introduction
can be brief, as the employer has already heard of the
candidate through their mutual contact. Note that
the employer is addressed by her first name; only do
on your

this if your contact has suggested it is appropriate.


mark

When in doubt, include the full name and title of


your addressee.
recipe for
success
formatting
writing &
a tasty

letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

96 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
LINDA S. BRADFORD
305 Locust Drive #12
Los Angeles, CA 90046
310-555-0883

on your
mark
August 30, 2000

Hamilton Trout
Andersen Consulting

recipe for
success
Spear Street Tower
One Market Plaza
Suite 3700
San Francisco, CA 94105

formatting
writing &
Dear Hamilton:

I am writing to introduce myself as a candidate for a consulting position at your firm. I have
excellent academic and professional credentials, as indicated on my enclosed resume.

a tasty
letter
cover
Throughout my professional career, I have adhered to the highest standards of excellence
and have demonstrated strong communication skills, analytical ability, poise, creativity, and
dedication.

delivery
Andersens excellent reputation and corporate clientele are an ideal match with my interests

digital
and background. In particular, I believe my experience in formulating legal strategies and
preparing analyses for complex litigation cases would be an excellent addition to your
Strategic Services Competency Group.

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great
I plan to be in San Francisco the week of September 15 and would like to meet with you then
to further discuss my qualifications. I will call you on Friday and look forward to scheduling a
meeting at your convenience in mid-September.

resume to
interview
Very truly yours,

Linda S. Bradford
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 97


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Dont Do
misspell anyones name, confuse job titles or address your cover letter to the proper hiring
departments, or incorrectly name the job for which manager, by name. Dont know who that is? Do some
youre applying. Pay close attention to the language research, or pick up the phone and call. Still cant find
used in the job listing, if youre responding to one, and out who the correct person is? Then address your
on your

double-check any personal names you use. letter to the name of the human resources manager
mark

who will probably be reading the letter.

Dont Do
recipe for

try to be too cute or use humor that might not be craft a compelling opening line that will draw the
success

funny or appropriate to everyone. reader into the body of your letter.

Dont Do
restate the facts of your resume. Your cover letter point out any connections youve to the company,
formatting

should complement your resume by introducing you in either through a colleague, background in the
writing &

a personal way, stating your reasons for applying for companys business, or particular interest in the
a particular position, and enticing the hiring manager companys service or product.
to look at your resume. You might expand on special
projects or skills listed in your summary, but dont
include what can easily be read on the resume.

Dont Do
a tasty

letter
cover

go on and on and on. You should be able to state your craft clear, concise sentences that are error-free and
case in three to four well-crafted paragraphs. professional, without being stuffy or fluffy.

Dont Do
be arrogant or presumptuous. Youre the one be convincing and assertive with your letter. You
delivery
digital

approaching the employer, after all. dont want to come off as passive.

Dont Do
use bloated or flowery language. Make your state the next step, as in Ill call to set up an
statements clearly and get to the point as quickly as appointment, I am available on Tuesday afternoon
research

possible. for an interview, or Ill follow up next week to


great

answer any questions youve.

Dont Do
rush through writing your cover letter. As we stated include all of your contact information in your cover
resume to
interview

before, while cover letters are not always read, a letter. There is always the chance that your resume
poorly written one will send your application to the and cover letter could be separated, and you dont
no pile as quickly as a poorly written resume will. want to leave a potentially interested hiring manager
with no way of contacting you.

Do
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

show a bit of your personality. Youre trying to get the


hiring manager to like you and want to meet you.

98 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE
a tasty
at a 30 seconds on your recipe for writing & cover digital great resume to FOR YOUR
glance to satisfy mark success formatting letter delivery research interview REFERENCE

99
WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE
Digital
Delivery:

7
Preparing Internet-Ready Materials
and Applying Online
This Application
Is Experiencing
Technical Difficulties................ 102
Getting Past
the Spam Guard Dogs...............104
Using Online
Application Systems.................. 106
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

This Save Four Versions of Your


Resume

Application Is Once youve crafted the perfect resume, be sure to save


it in four electronic versions:

Experiencing 1. Microsoft Word or other word processing software


on your

document: This is your presentation resumethe


mark

Technical one with every formatting and stylistic bell and


whistle, and which youll print on high-quality,

Difficulties heavy bond paper. This is the one that youll send
recipe for

to recruiters via regular mail and the one youll


success

take with you when you interview. Keep several


You may think email is the best thing since the copies on hand.
Pony Express, but that doesnt mean your recruiter
does. Dont expect the person on the receiving end 2. Adobes PDF format: Increasingly, PDF is the
formatting

to fumble around with an attached file in a desperate preferred format for sending a formatted copy
writing &

quest to review your qualifications. If youve any of your resume via email. PDF documents tend
doubts about the quality of the format in which to display and print with greater consistency
your resume will arrive because of platform or on different computing platforms than Word
application variables, its best to send a hard copy documents do. In addition, Adobe Reader is a
as well. Nothing is worse than printing an emailed free download and comes preinstalled on nearly
a tasty

letter

resume with a bunch of garbage symbols in it! rants every computer shipped today. PDF also strips
cover

a recruiter. Faxing is almost as fast as email, and often out macros and revisions (sometimes exposed by
more reliable, although its definitely a good idea to your softwares track changes tool) that could
follow up a faxed resume with a phone call to make potentially cause problems.
sure it was received in legible form.
delivery
digital

Lets take a look at some steps you can take to 3. Plain text format with line breaks: Formatting
increase the likelihood that your exquisitely planned your resume as plain text allows databases and
and masterfully written resume actually makes it into data recognition software to read it without the
the hands of its intended recipient in legible form. confusion caused by formatting. Use this version
to cut and paste your document into the body
research

of an email message. In Microsoft Word, use the


great

> TIP Save As option to save your resume (named


After youve spell-checked your
differently from the first version) as plain text.
cover message or resume, click Select the Insert line breaks checkbox.
resume to
interview

on Hide Spelling Errors and Hide


Grammar Errors to remove any 4. Plain text format without line breaks: Use this
lingering but irrelevant error
markings. (In Word, go to the Tools version when youre cutting and pasting parts of
menu and select Options, then go your resume, such as into multiple fields on a web
to the Spelling & Grammar tab and form. In Microsoft Word, use the Save As option
check the appropriate boxes. Most
REFERENCE

to save your resume (under a different file name


FOR YOUR

other word processing software


offers equivalent choices.) from both preceding versions) as plain text, but do
not select the Insert line breaks checkbox.

102 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE


glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Using plain text versions will help you avoid (also known as ASCII text) when sending an email
formatting conflicts that can make your document cover message, and stick to a black Courier 12-point
difficult to read. Unfortunately, in the plain text font with a white background. The easiest way to do
versions youll also lose much of the formatting you this is to compose the message as a Word document,
took great care to develop for the presentation resume. then save it as a plain text document as explained

on your
To minimize the damage: previously. Before pasting your message into the email

mark
1. Replace bullets with asterisks (*). body, make sure the line length is no more than 60
characters long to prevent it from being fragmented in
2. Offset category headings with a row of tildes (~) the email viewing pane. In any event, scan your letter

recipe for
or capital letters. and fix any awkward line breaks before hitting send.

success
3. Change your margin settings to 2 inches; 60 Use a Specific Subject Line
characters (including spaces) is the maximum While it may be tempting to use the subject line
line length you should use to ensure your resume of an email as a marketing ploy to grab a recruiters

formatting
displays correctly in different email programs. attentionAttention! Ace Sales Rep Available!!!we

writing &
This setting will allow you to see and control recommend a more conservative approach that will
where line breaks occur. help the person on the receiving end track, file, or
forward your resume to an interested colleague. At
4. Select a fixed-width typeface like Courier and a a minimum, include your name and the position
12-point font size. applied for. For example:

a tasty
letter
Grace Adler, Business Analyst

cover
5. Add white space for readability.
Karen Walker, MBA - Marketing Specialist
6. Do a test run. Email your resume to yourself or a
friend to see how it looks. Mark Thompson, Sales Representative Candidate

delivery
digital
Finally, heres some quick advice about naming If youre responding to an online job announcement,
your resume documents: Be sure to include your you may want to include the job title or requisition
name (or at least your last name) in the file name number in the subject line, keeping in mind that the
(for example: Jane_Doe_resume.doc) so that the recruiter receiving your message may be responsible for

research
resume can be reunited with your cover message (see filling multiple positions. The job posting will often

great
next section) if the two part ways. include specific instructions for what to include in
the subject line. These arent suggestions; follow the
Include a Short Email Cover directions that the employer has outlined exactly.
Message
resume to
interview

Always include a cover message with an emailed


resume. The cover message is the body of your email,
and serves the same purpose as a traditional cover
letterto compel an employer to scroll down and read
REFERENCE

or open your attached resume.


FOR YOUR

An email cover letter should be very short and


conciseunder 150 words, ideallyand shouldnt
be longer than one screenful of text. Use plain text

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 103


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Getting Past First and Foremost, Follow


Directions!

the Spam If a company has advised you not to send email


attachments, dont. In fact, unless a company or

Guard Dogs recruiter specifically instructs you to send your resume


on your

as an attachment, send it in the body of your email in


mark

plain text format.


Spam and computer viruses have changed the We know that plain text resumes wont win any
rules of the road for communicating with potential beauty contests, but they often represent the most
recipe for

employers via email. Many companies now use reliable way to communicate your qualifications to
success

sophisticated filtering to guard company inboxes from hiring personnel. If you simply cant bear the thought
potentially hazardous emails. In many cases these of sending a plain text resume on its own, you can
filters delete or divert suspected spam before it even always follow up with a beautifully formatted paper
reaches its intended target. You might be wondering copy in the mail.
formatting

how this affects you, the innocent job seeker. After all,
writing &

youre not peddling Viagra or get-rich-quick schemes, Two Words: Easy Access
so your emailed resume should be safe, right? If youve been instructed to send your resume as an
Wrong! One job seeker sent his resume to a attachment, theres often an accompanying list of
company, proudly highlighting the fact that he had acceptable file formats that you should most definitely
graduated from his MBA program magna cum laude. pay attention to. If not, wed recommend either PDF
a tasty

letter

He received an automated bounce-back message or Microsoft Word. A word to the wise on Word,
cover

highlighting the supposed obscenity. A quick change however: Starting with the release of Microsoft Office
to with high honors produced better results. But 2007, Word will by default save files using a new
dont take false comfort in thisthat job seeker was format (Open XML, identified by a .docx extension)
one of the lucky ones. Most spam filters dont even that older versions of Word will not be able to open
delivery
digital

bother notifying the sender, meaning your email may without a special converter. So dont forget to save
disappear into a black hole. your materials using the Save As command, selecting
How can you avoid the curse of the overzealous the older .doc format. Along the same lines, never send
spam filter? We suggest the following precautionary zipped or compressed files that the recipient will have
measures: to manipulate in order to read.
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

104 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE


glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Avoid Words that Are Use a Professional Email
Overused in Spam Address
The less any part of your email looks like a spam Stay away from clever, cutesy oreven worse
message, the less likely it will be filtered. Avoid words potentially provocative email addresses. You may think
used by spammers, such as free, offer, increase, that drolltroll@underthebridge.com is absolutely

on your
and so on. And stay away from action phrases that hilarious, but the overworked hiring manager on the

mark
are also used to market unsavory content over email. receiving end may be less amused
You may not wish to say, for example, that youve In addition, some experts suggest that you avoid
enhanced or enlarged anything, even if these numbers in your email address to the left of the @

recipe for
terms are used in a perfectly appropriate way in your symbol. Even if you use something as innocuous

success
resume or cover message. Also, its a good idea to leave as your birthday or anniversary as the tag line
punctuation marks (especially exclamation marks) out (janedoe42801@whatever.com), it may be mistaken
of the subject line, and dont use all capital letters or for the tracking code that some spammers use. Err on
colored backgrounds. the side of caution and change your email address to

formatting
one that has few or no numbers in it.

writing &
> TIP
A word to the wise about numbers: Play It Safe
Rather than citing the $50,000,000 If youre able, ask a personal contact within the firm to
in sales youve personally forward your resume to the appropriate hiring manager
supervised, change your numerical
reference to $50 million, which is
on your behalf; that way you can check to be sure

a tasty
letter
that your email has been received without incident.

cover
less likely to set off the spam filter
alarm bells. Alternatively, if you can, follow up on your emailed
resume with a hard copy sent through regular mail.

Send Emails in Plain TextNot

delivery
HTMLFormat

digital
How can you tell which is which? If youre writing an
email in which you can alter the appearance of text (you
can italicize words, underline text, or change the font),
then youre likely composing an HTML email. Most

research
email programs allow you to toggle between the two

great
formats; if youre using Microsoft Outlook and want to
double-check, click on Format in your new message
window and be sure that plain text is selected.
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 105


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Using Online Be Thorough and Thoughtful


Dont be fooled by the one-sidedness of these systems;

Application recruiters really are on the other end evaluating your


responses. So dont skip questions, ignore instructions,

Systems or bang out your answers without editing them. You


on your

should treat your responses with the same seriousness


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and care you bring to your other written materials.


Many firms today use online tracking systems to Another tip: Some of these systems allow you to both
manage their inflow of resumes; some even use their enter your information into web forms and send your
recipe for

online systems exclusively. If you fail to properly enter materials via email; unless youre specifically instructed
success

your information into the system, you may never be not to, we recommend you do both, because this may
visible in the candidate pool. Recruiters rarely add make your information more visible to the recruiter.
hard copy resumes into these systems, so even though
you may prefer human contact, its a mistake to avoid Key in on Keywords
formatting

the online application process. You do, however, need Earlier in this guide, we discussed the value of placing
writing &

to be savvy about how these systems work so you can keywords in the skills summary of your resume.
optimize your application materials for the best results. Keywords are especially critical in online applications.
You may be aware that many firms try to streamline
How They Work their recruiting process by using specialized software
Though they differ in the amount of information they that scans your resume and other materials for
a tasty

letter

capture, online application systems tend to be quite keywords and phrases selected by the recruiter. The
cover

similar behind the scenes. Most automatically evaluate more matches, the higher your applications score.
a candidates fit against a given open position. They As this type of software has become more prevalent,
also typically dump your information into a candidate career advisers have begun suggesting that candidates
database, for automated matching against positions pepper their resumes and cover letters with frequently
delivery
digital

that open up in the future, or for recruiter-driven occurring keywords and phrases.
data searches. Regardless, expect to apply directly for
each position that interests you, which may involve
repeating the whole form-filling process again or
creating an account on the firms site.
research

After you submit an application, some systems


great

will send you a confirmation email, some will


display it on screen, and some will give you no sign
that your submission has gone through successfully.
resume to
interview

If the instructions indicate that youre supposed to


receive a message and you dont, try reapplying, or
contact the company to ensure that your application
has been received.
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FOR YOUR

106 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE


glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Visit firms websites and check out the language
used to describe training programs and job
requirements. Even if youre applying through an on-
campus recruiting process rather than responding to
an online job posting, its always a good idea to consult

on your
the job description that the company providesas

mark
well as the list of qualifications associated with that
positionto tailor and tweak the version of the
resume you use to apply for that position.

recipe for
Its best to temper your enthusiasm for keywords

success
with a healthy dose of good judgment. Never attempt
to cut and splice the entire job description into the
body of your resume (or cover letter) in an attempt
to cram in as many keywords as possible. This

formatting
strategy usually backfires; to the recruiters who are

writing &
reviewing your resume, youll come across as contrived
rather than credible. Instead of trying to outsmart
resume scanning software, your best bet is to focus
on the skills which the company requires and to
write a resume that highlights a record of sustained

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letter
achievement in these areas.

cover
Do Cover Messages Still Apply
Online?
When it comes to online cover messages, we suggest

delivery
digital
you follow the same guidelines we gave you when
talking about cover letters in print. If you can do
without, greatespecially if youve already answered
some open-ended questions during the application
process, such as What most qualifies you for the XYZ

research
position? If youre given a text field in which you can

great
paste a cover message, you probably should. If youre
not given one but have a valid reason to submit a cover
message, include it in the same document with your
resume to
resume. (If you do this, add a hard page breakor interview

several line breaks, if youre using plain textbetween


your cover message and resume so that your formatting
stays intact and the entire package is more presentable.)
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 107


Great
Research:

8
The Key to Tailoring Your Materials

Doing Your Due Diligence........ 110


Three Steps
of Effective Research..................111
Where to Look
for Information......................... 114
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Doing Your Know What You Want


But its not just for the employers sake that you should

Due Diligence do research. To be genuinely enthusiastic, you need


be able to state why the employer interests you. The
companys primary industry, group, or specialty may
on your

Congratulations! You now have the tools to be right in line with your career goals. Or you may be
mark

put together killer cover letters and resumes that are most excited by the companys standing in its field.
carefully gauged to appeal to each of the employers Perhaps a discussion with a current employee about
youre targeting in your job search. Of course, the the company culture stimulates your interest. Every
recipe for

next step is actually contacting prospective employers. job and every company offers different opportunities
success

Whatever your background, you can be sure that you for accomplishment; each will have various pros and
wont get far in the job market without doing your cons. Do the research to clarify your own goals and
due diligencethat is to say, doing the research that priorities. Then use the information to find the right
enables you to tailor your resume and cover letter to place in which you can succeed.
formatting

address each employers needs and to start getting


writing &

ready for an interview. Preparation, not impressive TIP


credentials, is your real key to success.
Preparation, not impressive credentials, is the
real key to success.
Learn What the Employer Wants
Almost every company is going to ask you, Why
a tasty

letter

us? Doing research ensures that you can answer Research is especially important for career changers
cover

this question convincingly. Recruiters and hiring and job seekers who worry about being typecast
managers consistently report that candidates who as overqualified. If this is your situation, your
seem informed about the organization and the resume and cover letter must stress how the position
industry are given priority in the initial review of matches your interests and career goals, in addition to
delivery
digital

applications, and are most likely to succeed later benefiting the employer. Research in this case allows
at the interview stage. Thus, youll have a great candidates who have exercised a lot of responsibility in
advantage over other applicants if youre able to prior jobs to build a persuasive case for their suitability
demonstrate that you understand the organizations for a range of new positions. Failing to do research is
objectives (products, services, or operations), its often why an overqualified candidates application
research

company culture, and why your skills and experience gets put on the no pile.
great

are ideally suited to its needs.


resume to
interview
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glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Three Steps Sports Marketing Internship

of Effective Are you interested in Qualifications:

Research
a career in marketing? A background in

on your
Have you recently marketing, with

mark
completed a marathon, related experience
triathlon, century ride, An active lifestyle
The better the information you gather, the or are you just an avid Excellent
more on target your cover letter and resume will be. sports participant? communication skills
We are looking for an Outgoing and

recipe for
Knowing what to seek and where to find it is the key energetic, active person energetic (a people

success
to effective research. The following three steps will to join our marketing person)
guide you through this all-important research process. team in a summer MS Office skills
internship that will be Illustrator
rewarding, educational,
> TIP and will provide all About Our Company:

formatting
writing &
of the excitement of We are a small,
When applying to a posted job crossing the finish innovative, and growing
opening, make a list of significant line after months of company with a retail
keywords included in the job training! store and an online site.
description and be sure to include About the internship: We cater to athletes of
these in your resume and cover The intern will assist in all levels and provide
letter. general marketing tasks the best brands in
from program creation sports apparel at great

a tasty
letter
cover
and implementation prices. Our grassroots
to preparing materials marketing strategy
for programs/events. keeps us very well
Step 1: Analyze the Job He/she will help out connected to the active
with general marketing community, and we
Description

delivery
office duties, and will are always on the go.

digital
A job description, included in many postings, provides help out at field and However, we are much
a great starting place to get a sense of the employers in-store events. The more than just a store
desired skills and qualifications. Begin by reading over marketing intern will with weekly programs
have some in-store and events geared
the job description and noting any keywords. Make tasks as well, in order toward educating
a list of these, and as you revise your resume for the

research
to learn all aspects and benefiting our
specific opening, include as many of these keywords as of marketing in a customers. Our team

great
possible. Next dig a little deeper to analyze the posting retail environment. members are as active
Some roles and as our customers,
for specifics that you can address point by point. responsibilities will participating in events
To learn how to do this, take a look at the following fluctuate as help is right next to them.

resume to
sample, based on a real posting on an online job board. needed in other areas. For more information interview

Pay attention to the italicized words, because these please see our website.
Schedule will be 2030
are keywords that provide the basis for customizing a hours a week, with
resume and cover letter. some evening and/or
weekend event work.
You MUST have a
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

flexible schedule!

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 111


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Heres what the ideal candidate looks like: Step 2: Contemplate the
Goals: career in marketing, learn about all Company
aspects of retail marketing Look into the firms noted areas of strength and focus
Personal qualities: energetic, active, flexible, on finding out the industries or product areas in which
outgoing, good communicator, sports lover it excels. Make a list of these. Identify elements of your
on your

Experiences that reflect the ability to: assist experience, education, or personal interests that relate
mark

others, create, implement, serve at events, work as to them. Also, explore the following:
part of a team, use computers, understand sports How does this job support the other functions
Interested in the company because: innovative, of the department, division, and overall
recipe for

growing, customer-focused, team-oriented, energetic, organizational structure?


success

and active environment


If you were applying for this position, you would What effect does the position have on other
demonstrate that your interests, goals, and skills are departments and what are their functions and
exactly what the employer is seeking, by using similar structures?
formatting

words to those found in the job posting in your cover


writing &

letter and resume. What are the companys stated goals and mission?

Practice Analyzing a Job Description What is the corporate culture?


Now you give it a try! Print out a job posting that
catches your eye. Highlight or circle the keywords and How stable is the company?
a tasty

letter

phrases, and write them in spaces below.


cover

Who are its competitors?


Goals:
__________________________________________ Gathering some answers to these questions will
__________________________________________ help you speak intelligently to the job description in
delivery
digital

your application, not to mention speak intelligently


Personal qualities: about the job if you get an interview. But also, and
__________________________________________ just as important, asking these questions from the
__________________________________________ beginning can help you surmise whether a job at this
company is really suited to you, and addresses your
research

Experiences that reflect the ability to: career and workplace needs. Remember earlier when
great

__________________________________________ we talked about enthusiasm being an important factor


__________________________________________ in a successful job application? Well, if this is an
opportunity that is really right for you, you probably
resume to

Interested in the company because:


interview

cant help but exude some enthusiasm. If not, you


__________________________________________ should move on to something that better suits you.
__________________________________________
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glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Step 3: Investigate the Industry
Having some knowledge about the industry in which Recruiters and hiring
you want to work can help you anticipate a few of managers love it when
the companys needs that arent specifically stated candidates do their
in the job posting. Consider as well that recruiting research because:

on your
and training new employees is expensive, and most

mark
employers hope that anyone they hire will stick The candidate does the legwork for the employer
by pointing to the match between the candidates
around for a while. Having the ability to address a job qualifications and the firms needs.
posting in the larger context of the industry helps to

recipe for
demonstrate that youre serious about the job and view The candidate demonstrates knowledge of, and

success
it from the stance of a professional. For these reasons, interest in, the company, making it easy to put the
candidates application ahead of the more generic
be sure to find and flesh out answers to the following ones that fail to address the companys goals.
questions:
What are the latest developments in the field The candidates knowledge of the company

formatting
or industry? results in a higher likelihood of retention if hired,

writing &
reducing the firms need to repeat costly and time-
consuming replacement searches.
How is the current economy affecting the field?

What trends are being forecast?

a tasty
letter
How is your targeted company positioned in

cover
the industry?

The information you gather from each of the


preceding three steps should inform the way in which

delivery
digital
you customize your resume and cover letter, as well
as how you conduct yourself during an interview.
The more knowledgeable youre, the clearer youll be
about your potential role, and the more youll impress
employers with your ability to contribute to their

research
organizations. Without effective background research,

great
your cover letter and resume will be shots in the
dark. You could get lucky, but why not illuminate the
playing field?
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 113


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Where to Career sites for many firms are treasure troves of


information. Be sure to look for and read the profiles

Look for of company employees, and note any statements about


the companys culture and values. Most career sites

Information provide job postings and, for companies that regularly


on your

recruit candidates, explain their recruiting process and


mark

schedules. And as discussed in a previous chapter, the


The information you need to make your resume companys career site is where youll find instructions
and cover letter sparkle is out there; its up to you to for submitting resumes and applications online.
recipe for

find it and make the most of it. To investigate a specific Here are some additional websites insiders
success

employer, a position, or an industry, consult as many recommend to jumpstart your investigation:


resources as are available to you. Go to the library, Catch up on the latest news about the company
search the Web, speak to your relatives, talk to your and industry youre pursuing at PR Newswire
friends, and attend career fairs and networking events. (www.prnewswire.com), NewsDirectory (www.
formatting

And even if youre not a recent graduate, never hesitate newsdirectory.com), and Bizjournals (www.
writing &

to contact the career center at your alma mater. bizjournals.com).

Helpful Websites Americas Career InfoNet (brought to you by


Employer websites usually are the best places to begin the U.S. Department of Labor) features helpful
your research. Most company websites are divided into information on wages and employment trends
a tasty

letter

sections that address the needs of different visitors, (www.acinet.org).


cover

from potential customers to interested investors.


Although its worth paying a brief visit to each section The Occupational Outlook Handbook from
of a company website to discover what it offers, look the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.
for and pay special attention to the following sections: gov/oco/) provides career and occupational
delivery
digital

The companys history (sometimes called information for various fields and also provides a
About Us) Career Guide to Industries (www.bls.gov/oco/cg/).

The companys product lines or services (an To get unbiased information on some of the top
employer will expect you to know this) hirers in the United States, check out WetFeets
research

Career Profiles, Industry Profiles, and Company


great

Press releases or announcements (look for news Profiles (www.wetfeet.com).


about products and company performance)
resume to
interview

The companys career site


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FOR YOUR

114 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE


glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Networking
Nothing is better than having an in at the company
where youre applying. Before you prepare your resume
and cover letter, try to get in touch with someone
who can help answer questions regarding what makes

on your
a good candidate. If you dont know someone on

mark
the inside, try to make contact through personal
networks or through professional associations.
You can find contact information on associations in

recipe for
almost every field or industry via the online directories

success
provided by the ASAE and the Center for Association
Leadership (www.asaecenter.org) and the Internet
Public Library (www.ipl.org).

formatting
writing &
Top Five Things That Will
Automatically Screen Out
an Applicant

5. Resume sent without indication of position

a tasty
letter
desired or pursued

cover
4. Poor quality materials, including photocopies,
handwritten, or typed applications
3. Not demonstrating the right qualifications for the
position
2. Too many pages of material

delivery
1. Misspelling, poor editing, and bad grammar

digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

For more information on mastering the art of networking, consult the WetFeet Insider Guide Networking Works!,
available at www.wetfeet.com

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 115


From Resume
to Interview

9
and Beyond
Follow Up After
Sending Your Application.......... 118
Prepare Your 30-Second Spiel.... 120
Do You Need a Portfolio?.......... 120
Anticipate Your
Interviewers Questions............. 121
Write Those
Thank-You Letters..................... 122
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Follow Follow these basic guidelines


for constructive follow-up, and

Up After you wont go wrong:


Be persistent but not pesky. Two calls in

Sending Your one day are overkill; two calls in one week are
on your

probably fine.
mark

Application Be prescriptive in your requests. Ask specifically


for what you want, whether its to schedule an
recipe for

What a relief! The writing, editing, and interview or to have a casual chat on the phone.
success

proofreading are finally over. Youve hit Send, and


your perfectly tailored resume and cover letter are with Keep the ball in your court. Youll probably feel
your prospective employer. Tingles of anticipation run more in control if you can plan the next steps
up and down your spine as you daydream about the rather than wait by the phone.
formatting

call youll soon be receiving for an interview. Think


writing &

you can relax? Think again. Support all that hard Make yourself easily available. Provide a number
work by following through with an additional step. If where a message can be left at any time.
you really, truly want the job, continue to show your
interest after you have sent your application. Employers say that at this early stage, there is a fine
If you have submitted your application materials line between the interested candidate and the pushy
a tasty

letter

directly to someone in the company or to the one. But the hiring staff we interviewed unanimously
cover

companys HR department, place a phone call or send said it couldnt hurt and could most definitely help
an email to reiterate your desire to learn more about your application if you take some time to follow up by
the position. Dont become a nuisance, but do be contacting staffers in a respectful mannera few calls
persistent. Use the opportunity to present your basic or emails, and thats it.
delivery
digital

qualifications and affirm your interest in the company.


research
great
resume to
interview
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FOR YOUR

118 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE


glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
If you need guidance on what to say, try adapting In the latter script, the candidate leaves a brief
one of these scripts: message with some information on his background
so the associate or recruiter will remember seeing the
This is Kelly Purcell. I sent you an resume. He is specific about his plans to call back on
application for the EMT position a few days ago Friday, which gives him an opportunity to inform

on your
and am following up to provide any additional John Smith that he followed up on his request.

mark
information you may want. If youre available If youve left three messages and all have been
to discuss my qualifications at greater length, ignored, you may want to send your resume to
I would like to schedule an interview. I can be someone else at the organization and try the process

recipe for
reached today at 555-444-5555. On Thursday again. Many firms communicate primarily through

success
and Friday, its best to call my cell phone, 555- voice mail, although you might have luck using
657-6699. Im looking forward to speaking email or even leaving a good old-fashioned message
with you directly. with the receptionist. Tailor your approach to what
youve learned about how that particular company

formatting
OR communicates.

writing &
This is Merrill Morgan calling on
Wednesday. Im an MBA candidate from Fuqua
with experience in the M&A group at UBS.
At John Smiths request, I sent my resume to

a tasty
letter
you on Monday. I would like to schedule an

cover
interview and will call you on Friday to discuss
my qualifications.

delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 119


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Prepare Your Do You Need a


30-Second Portfolio?
Spiel
on your

A portfolio is comprised of examples of your


mark

work that support the achievements you cited in your


The best way to prepare for the first interview is resume. Once used by chiefly by artists or educators
to know your resume extremely well. Develop and to show samples of their work, the portfolio is often
recipe for

practice a 20- to 30-second pitch that summarizes valuable to many job applicants, especially those
success

your experience and major achievements. You can aiming for positions in writing, marketing, advertising,
base this presentation on your objective statements and other creative fields. Your portfolio could contain
or professional summary/profile. You will use it articles by or about you, writing samples, samples
countless times to introduce yourself on the phone, of products youve created (including brochures,
formatting

in making network contacts, or in an interview when printouts of Web pages, business plans, and graphical
writing &

the interviewer has not had a chance to review your charts), awards or commendations, or school papers or
qualifications. Preparing your pitch will help you transcripts (for current or recent students).
articulate the items listed on your resume. You should In all likelihood, you wont be asked to submit
be able to describe points on your resume in a clear, a portfolio with your job application. However,
concise, and convincing manner. a portfolio can be a very effective tool during an
a tasty

letter

interviewit validates the experiences and skills you


cover

want to demonstrate to the prospective employer. If


you want to work in a field that routinely requests a
portfolio of work, though, consider creating a personal
website to display the contents of your portfolio.
delivery
digital

Include the URL of your portfolio in the headings of


your resume and cover letter.
research
great
resume to
interview
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FOR YOUR

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glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Anticipate Job Hopping
If youve been at several companies in just a few years,

Your or never stayed at one company longer than a year


or two, you risk being perceived as a job hopper.

Interviewers Your resume reader may wonder whether youve

on your
been fired for poor performance. Frequent career

mark
Questions changes sometimes indicate that a person has difficulty
sticking with a situation, working through problems,
or committing to a job. Many employers look for

recipe for
While recruiters and hiring managers may be people who want to stay around for a whileafter all,

success
impressed with the assets listed in your resume, they employee turnover is costly in real dollars because of
will search for potential red flags to probe during the time spent in the search and the loss of operational
first interview. In particular, they will look for gaps knowledge. However, in todays job market, resume
in qualifications or employment inconsistencies, readers are more accustomed to encountering

formatting
and may even formulate questions directed at resumes with work histories showing several different

writing &
resume weaknesses. Read your resume with a critical employers. If you can clearly articulate how each job
eye, looking for things that might appear odd or has contributed to your professional development and
incongruentfor example, position titles that dont if you can produce strong references, you should have
seem to correspond to the duties listed or a series no problem addressing any negative perceptions.
of positions that decrease (rather than increase) in

a tasty
Hometown Hires

letter
responsibility. Be prepared to address these issues

cover
should you get an interview. If youve spent most of your academic and professional
life in Boston, an employer may question your sudden
Time Gaps interest in joining the Chicago office of a firm.
One reason recruiters and hiring managers like Consider writing about your goals or perspectives on

delivery
digital
chronological resumes is that they want to know relocating in your cover letter; this can be addressed
whether a candidate took time off between school with the why you chose them paragraph (discussed
years or jobs. Be prepared to explain any lapses in the Writing a Tasty Cover Letter chapter). Be
between jobs or between your sophomore and junior aware that an employer who is thinking about flying
year, for example. If you traveled, have ready an you out for an interview will probably grill you by

research
explanation, or anecdotes, that describe something you phone before ponying up the funds to pay for you to

great
learned during that time. If you took time off to have come out for a face-to-face interview.
a baby or resolve a personal issue, youll probably need
to supply that information to the hiring manager. Its
resume to
usually best not to go into a lot of personal detail interview

insiders tell us this is a warning sign, especially in the


cover letter or first interview. But be clear and focus on
what you accomplished during that time. Employers
want to be sure you can handle intellectual rigor, jobs
REFERENCE

with increasing responsibility, and balancing your


FOR YOUR

personal and professional pursuits.

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 121


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Write Those The thank-you letter is another tool you can use to
add extra oomph to your candidacy. Short and sweet,

Thank-You this note shows gratitude for the time the employer
has taken to review your qualifications, and its an

Letters! opportunity to demonstrate (again) that youre clearer


on your

than ever in your understanding of the fit between


mark

the position and your qualifications and goals. The


Say that all your hard work, your customized thank-you letter has a bonus function, too: It gives
cover letter, and tailored resume have led to a you a final opportunity to address any weakness or
recipe for

meeting with an employer. Your research into the clarify any misunderstanding that may have occurred
success

company and your own background helped you in the interview process. The sample thank-you letter
have a smooth and convincing interview. Or maybe weve included mentions specifics of the meeting,
the interview went pretty well, but there were a few shows appreciation, and reminds the employer of the
points you wish you had covered or stated differently. candidates strengths. Heres a sample of an emailed
formatting

(Weve all been there!) thank you letter that you can use to model one of
writing &

your own:
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letter
cover
delivery
digital
research
great
resume to
interview
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glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
RE: Coordinator, Member Services 2/26 Interview

February 27, 2007

on your
Janet Lewis, Executive Director New York Global

mark
Dear Janet,

recipe for
success
I genuinely enjoyed meeting with you yesterday and learning more
about New York Global and the clients you serve. I believe strongly that
helping immigrants utilize their skills and training in a well-matched work
environment is beneficial for both the individuals and the U.S. employers

formatting
who hire them. I find the goals of your organization, in offering both direct

writing &
services and advocacy on the issue of workforce diversity, admirable.

I was glad to be able to answer some of your questions regarding my


background, approach to client services, and career goals. After our
discussion, I continue to be eager to support the mission of New York

a tasty
Global and believe I could make a significant contribution as Coordinator of

letter
cover
Member Services. In particular, my prior experience creating and delivering
workforce diversity trainings and resources, along with my knowledge of local
employers (developed through professional experience and through personal
contacts as a native New Yorker) could serve your organization as you seek

delivery
to build and strengthen client programming and outreach.

digital
Please let me know if you have further questions, would like more
information, or would like a list of my professional references. Feel free to
contact me at your convenience via email or telephone at (212) 555-1212. I

research
look forward to hearing from you.

great
Sincerely,

Rachel Hertz, M.A.


resume to
interview

rachelhertz@hotmail.com
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 123


For Your
Reference

10
Recommended Resources.......... 126
Books........................................ 127
Surveys...................................... 127
glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

Recommended NewsDirectory.com or Bizjournals (www.


bizjournals.com) can help you in your search for

Resources current information on companies, organizations,


and industry news.
on your

The resources that follow represent some of the Researching the Position
mark

best tools in developing job search materials. They The Occupational Outlook Handbook from the
correspond to suggestions weve made in this guide Bureau of Labor Statistics contains valuable
about preparation through research, and also provide information on occupational paths. Learn about
recipe for

access to more resume and cover letter information qualifications, trends, and related occupations at
success

and samples. However, be aware that this is but a small www.bls.gov/oco/.


sampling of the information thats available to help
you effectively develop killer cover letters and resumes. Salary.com features searchable salary information
So use the following as a jumping-off point in your by career categories and by location. Use this
formatting

research endeavors and feel free to explore the vast information to research and respond to salary
writing &

array of information thats out there on this topic. expectation questions.

Resumes and Letters WetFeets Real People Profiles provide a


Get resume feedback from a career or resume glimpse of what its like to work in a variety of
adviser. Most university career centers offer free industries, from accounting to venture capital
a tasty

letter

resume consultations or workshops for students, (www.wetfeet.com).


cover

and for alumni at a nominal fee.


Job market and hiring trend information from
Check out WetFeets website for resume advice at NACE (National Association of Colleges and
www.wetfeet.com. Employers) can keep you up to date on your job
delivery
digital

search (www.jobweb.com).
Have a look at the Riley Guide, which comprises
an extensive compilation of links to information Industries and Fields
on writing resumes and cover letters, as well The U.S. Department of Labors Americas Career
as other useful job search information (www. InfoNet can give you a sense of the bigger picture
research

rileyguide.com). on wages and employment trends (www.acinet.


great

org/acinet/).
Researching Employers
Use Google or another Internet search engine to The Bureau of Labor Statistics provides its Career
resume to
interview

find a company or organizations website (www. Guide to Industries at www.bls.gov/oco/cg/.


google.com).
Search information on associations in almost
WetFeet Company Profiles give unvarnished every field or industry via online directories:
insider information on top companies, including ASAE and the Center for Association
REFERENCE

key indicators for success such as annual revenue, Leadership (www.asaenet.org/GeneralDetail.


FOR YOUR

employee hiring numbers, and latest trends (www. cfm?ItemNumber=1796) and the Internet Public
wetfeet.com). Librarys database of Associations on the Net
(www.ipl.org/div/aon).

126 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE


glance
at a
30 seconds
to satisfy
Associations often have useful industry and WetFeet Insider Guides
career path information on their websites, and WetFeets Insider Guides give you real insight into the
contacting members can be a great way to industries and employers that interest you most. Check
networkone of the best sources of insider out the additional titles available at www.wetfeet.com
information for your job search. to assist you with your job search. Youll find guides

on your
that focus on everything from how to network and ace

mark
your interviews to negotiate a good salary.

Books e-Resumes: Everything You Need to Know

recipe for
About Using Electronic Resumes to Tap into

success
Your Rights in the Workplace Todays Hot Job Market
This book does a good job of informing readers about Covers all forms of electronic resumes and explains
their rights and responsibilities as future employees. their uses, strengths, and weaknesses.
Barbara Kate Repa (Nolo Press) Susan Britton Whitcomb and Pat Kendall (McGraw-Hill)

formatting
writing &
Gallery of Best Cover Letters: A Collection
of Quality Cover Letters by Professional
Resume Writers
This provides valuable cover letter samples across a
Surveys
wide spectrum of industries, and with a wide variety Heres more information about the two surveys

a tasty
letter
of styles. cited in this book:

cover
David Noble (JIST Works) ResumeDoctor.com provides expert advice
to job seekers, employers, and members of the
Best Resumes for College Students and New media. ResumeDoctor.com is a subsidiary of
Grads: Jump-Start Your Career Personal Department Inc. (PDI), Vermonts largest

delivery
digital
Offers resume samples for diverse college majors and independently owned staffing agency.
employment situations. Since 1956, the National Association of Colleges
Louise M. Kursmark (JIST Works)
and Employers (NACE) has been the leading source
of information about the employment of college
Skillstalking graduates. The Job Outlook 2007 report forecasts the

research
Lists hundreds of skills to incorporate into your job hiring intentions of employers and examines other

great
search documents. issues related to the employment of new college
Dick Gaither (Job Search Training System) graduates. For more information, check out www.
naceweb.com.
resume to
interview
REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

WETFEET INSIDER GUIDE 127


glance
at a

Killer Cover Letters and Resumes


30 seconds
to satisfy

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Ace Your Case I: Consulting Interviews, 3rd ed. 25 Top Consulting Firms
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resume to

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UBS AG Careers in Retail
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REFERENCE
FOR YOUR

128 W E T F E E T I N SIDER GUIDE


Turn to this WetFeet
Insider Guide to learn