Posted by: wendywerner | June 24, 2013

It’s all about them – Making a good first impression in the job search

When you start looking for a new position, there is no doubt that one of your primary reasons is that you would like to find a job more suited to your skills, interests and long term career goals than your current role.  While it only makes sense to have your own best interests in mind as you begin this very time consuming task – when it comes to making contact with an employer remember that it is all about them.

One of the biggest mistakes that candidates make when they write cover letters to prospective employers is to tell the employer why the job would be good for them.  While this may be the case, as soon as you enter the candidate phase of a job search, all of the best interest needs to be directed to the needs of the employer.  Specifically, you want to be able to tell them the ways in which you can help meet their needs, serve their clients, and/or increase their bottom line.

To that end, if you are sending a resume and cover letter to an employer on-line, or through an email application, make sure that you make it as easy as possible for the employer to save your documents.  Sending a resume titled “2013 Version 2” may help you keep track of the document, but it does little for the employer who doesn’t really want to rename your resume.  So send it in FirstNameLastNameResume format.  The same goes for your cover letter.

The same advice continues when you get to the interview stage.  While it is fine to know that you will further develop your skill set on the job; what the employer wants to know is what you can do for them now.  So pull together all of your stories of past successes that could apply to your prospective employer’s position.  Until you get to the offer phase and salary negotiation stage of the process – it is really all about them.

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