Time to Resume the Job Search (pun intended)
Since my last blog about going to see The Dark Knight Rises, I’ve received a flurry of e-mails (ok, just 5 – and 1 that’s probably spam). They’ve all been pretty encouraging, with the exception of 1 (more on that soon).
One life-long reader wants to know more about me. She asked what I was doing to qualify myself for a position and how I’m currently making ends meet; though her tone was more like, “So what are you actually doing with your life, you lazy bastard?”
Well, since there’s no such thing as tone through e-mail, my subconscious probably read her e-mail that way. Anyway, it was a good question.
I’ll start off by saying that I am not unemployed; I work full-time as a Receptionist at a retirement home.
Seriously, with a job title like that — who needs pick-up lines? And how much do I make? Lets just say I can afford a Netflix subscription with 4 DVDs at-a-time, no sweat.
As for what I’m doing to qualify myself for a marketing position? Simple. I’m working on padding the ol’ resume like it was one of those K9 dog biting suits those FBI trainers wear.
Not by outright lying though, that doesn’t work. I’d know.
A few years ago, I believed a resume was a magic sheet of paper that, whatever I wrote down on it, became absolutely true. I treated my resume like it was some insecure girl’s Facebook profile picture – I dressed it all up, coated it with fancy lines, and skewed everything that was on it at impossible angles. I thought speaking fluent Vietnamese sounded pretty good, so I put it in there in bold – like the final coating of mascara.
I was called in for an interview to a fancy doctor’s office shortly after. To prepare, I proceeded to do everything just short of hiring a speaking coach like Colin Firth in the King’s Speech. I figured I could win them over in the interview and they would overlook the slight exaggerations on my resume.
My interviewer was a stern Asian woman who carried herself in a way that made you envision her running around as a kindergartner in a lab coat – she was all business. I sat down and put on my most ambitious smile, the one I practiced in the mirror so deftly at every traffic light getting there. She scanned my resume and stated, without a hint of a question in her voice, “So you speak Vietnamese”.
“Mm hm” I responded, vowing to myself to start learning immediately after I got home from the interview.
“Good. We’ll go ahead and conduct this interview in Vietnamese, then.”
…The remainder 20 minutes of that story is as squirm-worthy as you can uncomfortably imagine.
Today, my closest friends suggested the art of just embellishing actual facts. You know, going from Receptionist to a Communications Coordinator, or from picking my nose to performing a precision extraction of nasal vestibule mucus – you get the idea.
So, in the past week, besides permanently changing my homepage to http://www.Thesaurus.com, I’ve read some really great articles. Resume tips are like the weight loss commercials of the Internet — there are a million of them, and they all say the same thing. After sifting through the same tired “proven tips”, these articles struck me as most practical:
This one from Content Notes titled, 15 Tips to Make Your Resume Shine in 15 Seconds, has everything from format samples to helpful tips like getting rid of the corny objectives portion of your resume. And this article from Vertex42, Action Verbs for Resumes, lists appealing verbs by industry to make you sound like a real big shot. Check these out if you’re working on your resume too.
And before I go, here’s that other e-mail I received from a friendly observer about my last blog:
Going to the movies alone is one thing, but going to IMAX alone is pretty low. I hope you get a job as a tollbooth operator, seems fit for a loner like you.
He does have a point. I forgot that IMAX was the carpool lane of the theater going experience, what was I thinking? And tollbooth operator? Sounds good. I’ll let your boss know that you referred me.
Just kidding. I love e-mails, so keep ‘em coming