#b#Alex Freund#/b#, principal of Landing Expert Career Coaching in Hopewell, will present his “Resume Tune-Up and Workshop,” a free leg-up for those facing a demanding job market, on Friday, January 22, at 2 p.m. at Trinity Church. For information, E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 609-333-8866.
A Romanian-born Israeli, Freund came to the United States with his wife to matriculate at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration in the 1970s. His father had been second in command in a Romanian shoe factory that made half of all the shoes in that country, and later took up accounting when the family moved to Israel in the 1950s. Two decades later Freund and his wife liquidated their assets and with the proceeds bought one-way tickets to New York City.
Although Freund got a good job after earning his bachelor’s in business and hotel administration from Cornell in 1975, by 1977 he was facing one of several job transitions in his life. He later landed successful stints at Honeywell, Sanofi-Aventis, and Tyco International, and ultimately stepped out on his own as a career coach and public speaker. He first began his work in career coaching in 1977, however, with a presentation to 40 graduating college students on “How to find a job.” Since then, he has mentored and coached hundreds of individuals seeking to advance within their professions, find new jobs, or change their careers.
Freund, who periodically does the free tune-up workshop, says he does the workshop gratis simply because the people who need it most cannot afford the typical hundreds of dollars an agency would charge to do similar work. But money is the least of the problems for most people in terms of their resumes, Fruend said prior to a similar workshop he conducted last May.
The biggest problem is that most resumes just flat out stink.
Time and again, Freund says, he sees resumes that are boring at best, poorly written at worst. Most are chock full of bullet points and a cut-and-paste version of the job description the candidate was given the day he started his current job. People simply take these descriptions and file them under “Duties Included” and think that is enough.
“You need to highlight your contributions and accomplishments,” he says. “Your resume has to clearly portray you.” At it needs to separate you from the pile. The Internet transports more resumes than the U.S. mail these days, and employers have the luxury of letting keyword criteria filter out resumes that do not contain what they are seeking. If you plan to rely on old-fashioned ideas about resume construction, you could be in for a lot of quiet because the phone will not be ringing for you.
Essentially, Freund says, you have 10 seconds to grab the attention of overwhelmed HR people who do not read resumes, but, rather, scan them.
Trained eyes will weed out careless mistakes in almost no time, and boring presentations will give HR managers one more excuse to throw your resume out and further thin the pile.
Freund suggests pondering what is required for a job, then spelling out what you have done for a past company. Have you saved it money? Increased its productivity or efficiency? Increased its public profile?
But don’t go overboard. One truism that still holds is that resumes should not exceed two pages. Resumes are not about sharing all that you have, they are about what you can do for the company, Freund says.
Be concise and direct, outline what you have accomplished and how you can use it to help the company you are applying to. Do not ramble through long paragraphs and make sure your resume focuses on the position, not on everything you have ever done.
Be concise, but make sure you make your case for your accomplishments. Just as you can say too much, you can say too little. It is wise to tell everyone about your accomplishments, but you will beat a hasty path to the wastepaper basket if you drone on about your duties and resposibilities.
You are, after all, looking to fill a job, not just a job description.