Say what bloggerman?!? Let me explain! Liz Ryan, CEO of Human Workplace, a human resources industry think tank recently published an interesting post on LinkedIn. (Editor’s note: If you’re not using LinkedIn for your career development, you’re missing out!) Liz explained the two most costly mistakes most people make when searching for a job. As a recent recipient of nursing assistant certification from the Allen School, you should sit up and take note because you’ll have lots of opportunities to go to job interviews with your newly earned credential.
The first of Ms. Ryan’s two costly mistakes is what I like to call a “repetitive stress injury”. No, not the dreaded tennis elbow or tendonitis. I am talking about the mistake many job seekers make of building one résumé and then using it to apply to all the jobs they wish to interview for. This is a big mistake.
Ryan says, “You have to customize your résumé to showcase your stories and experiences that are most relevant to the specific job you’re applying for.”
Certainly core pieces of your résumé can be repurposed from one opportunity to the next. However, key pieces of it should be modified and slanted specifically to address functions relevant to the specific job you’re applying for.
“You’ll change the summary at the top of your résumé every time you apply for a job, to make it clear to your hiring manager that although you’re good at lots of things, at this moment in time you’re conveying your expertise in one area in particular — the one your manager is most likely to care about,” writes Ryan.
The second mistake according to Ryan is the failure to share your dragon-slaying stories. Ryan explains that all companies have typical challenges and pain points which they experience day to day. Ryan says to have your “dragon-slaying stories” — instances where you overcame particularly vexing or challenging problems — ready to share with hiring managers. “Develop your Dragon-Slaying Story list,” advises Ryan, “and focus on Pain rather than the bullet points in a job ad or your own done-to-death list of Skills!”
Take these two simple but important pieces of advice to heart and you’ll avoid two of the things that regularly cost candidates the job.