Career Program – 4. Maximize Image & Resume

Maximize Image and Resume
Maximize Image and Resume

Fit in. Get them to see you as one of them.

Where do you begin?

If they wear short hair, get a haircut. You can always grow it out. If coworkers wear jeans to work, wear jeans. If they invite you to lunch, order what they order. Repeat back words from ads or even repeat back words they used.

No, this is not about you losing your power. You are showing colleagues that you can be part of their culture. Of course, you can still be yourself, especially after getting the job! Newcomers have been doing this for centuries.

Prepare. Investigate. Talk and Look like them.

Make Your Image Fit.

Your hirable image is your resume. So, make it desirable. Customize it for each job posting. After you’ve developed three or four “Job Specific Resumes,” You’ll find you can use them repeatedly. If you lack experience, offer in the cover letter to work as an intern. Your goal is to get your foot in the door.

What’s Your Hire-Ability Value?

Ask yourself these bottom-line questions.

  1. “Where in the job market is my degree, skills, and experience valuable?”
  2. “What can I do to emphasize that I’m the most desirable job fit?”
  3. “How can I overcome a no-hire weakness?

Create Specialized Resumes

View the examples below. Pick one. Then, create your resume. Follow the Resume Dos and Don’ts advice. Then, turn your basic resume into a by-industry series of resumes. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to emphasize qualifications and job experience in your resume. Remember, you are selling yourself.

Would You Hire You?

Get to know each potential employer beyond the job description. Check out their website-Goggle or LinkedIn, for future projects and news. The more you know, the more you can target your resume to emphasize benefi­ts and overcome rejections.

Edit Out Non-Fit Areas: Start by taking out what’s not related without showing an employment record gap. Or rework them with a new language that better ­fits with the employer’s job description.

Are You Emphasizing Your Assets? Add more emphasis on the skills that match their requirements—elaborate more on the duties and accomplishments they will ­find desirable. Then, adapt your goal and job descriptions.

Are You Using Their Words? Words can be misleading. Each industry is different. Research their want ads or company job posting. Use their language to customize your resume and communicate better in the interview. Rewrite your past experiences to better fit. Otherwise, they won’t be able to hear.

 Use the Cover Letter to Sell Yourself

Make a list inside the cover letter of the employer’s skill requests. Then, emphasize your strengths in these areas—examples: Proficient in Software XYZ, Excellent Communications, two years of Medical Sales. This detail will tell them you’re a good listener and help get you an interview.

Overcome a Resume No-Hire Weakness

Too Many Jobs Listed

Do you look flaky?


  1. Cover your tracks in the cover letter with “I’m looking for a career in my chosen ­field.
  2. Reassure them that their job posting is in your chosen career.
  3. Don’t be concerned with summer jobs.
  4. Just state it as such in your resume.

Gap in Employment

Perhaps you have issues or are not a worker?

Tip: Tell them I took some time off or whatever. Reassure you’re a hard worker.

Other Problems

Expecting others to take your word for it.

Tip: Get letters that explain or support you.

Your Final Resume Critique

Now, take a break. Clear your head. Then review your cover letter and resume. Will it grab the employer’s attention in 10 seconds?
If not, what else can you do? Choose to “Never stop ­fighting for your dream career.”