In a tough job market, people will go to some strange lengths to get their resume noticed. While job seekers need to do whatever it takes to get notices, they need to remember that they are still applying for a position in a professional organization. Unless you are seeking a job in a creative field where outrageous behavior is common, it is best to leave the theatrics out of your search techniques. In very specific traits some of these outrageous tactics may have landed the applicant a job, most often it just garners them a headshake from the hiring manager and a “no, thank you” in response to the resume.
Buying billboard space near potential employers’ offices – Some applicants have purchased billboard or bus shelter space and put their resume on it in an area where they were applying for a job. This technique, however unique it may be, is an expensive risk that may not pay off. There are no guarantees that the right people will get the message nor is there any guarantee they will pay attention to it. Additionally, you are taking a huge risk for the potential for identity theft by putting your personal information out in such a public manner.
Singing your praises – From singing telegrams to self-composed YouTube videos, some applicants try to win a job with song. Most hiring managers have several screens that visitors must go through in order to see them so your telegram will probably only be seen by the receptionist. If it does get through, the hiring manager will probably remember you for all the wrong reasons such as wasting their time or an unprofessional approach. Unless you are looking for a job in music, leave the songs out of your job search techniques.
Getting at the job through the stomach – Sending your resume with food is not a sure way to a job – regardless of how excellent a cook you are. Unless you are seeking a position as a chef or in a food-related industry, it is unlikely that your efforts will be appreciated or rewarded. Many people are not fond of nor are in the habit of accepting food from anonymous sources or unknown people. It is purely a safety issue. It would be more professional and better to save your culinary delights for the time after you have the job and are enjoying your first employee potluck lunch.
Balloons, shoes, and flowers – Applicants have sent everything from balloons to gifts with their resume in hopes of landing a job. It is important to remember that any gift can be considered a bribe and will most likely not get you a job. Hiring managers are in a position where they must account for gifts and other items and will refuse anything that may appear to be showing favoritism to one candidate over another. Additionally, it is truly in bad form to attempt to curry favor with a hiring manager by giving them a gift. It won’t give you an advantage and will probably cost you the job.
Fonts, colors, and pictures – Some applicants feel that they will make their resume stand out by using neon colored paper, writing in crazy fonts, or adding pictures. While it’s true that their resume will stand out, it will stand out for all the wrong reasons. Most hiring managers have seen the full range of wild additions to the standard resume and aren’t impressed with them at all. It is also important to note that in many companies in the US, adding a photo may get your resume rejected as to avoid potential legal issues or questions of ethics. Generally, these resumes sort themselves automatically to the rejected folder because they attract attention for negative reasons. While it is perfectly reasonable to use a light colored resume paper to help stand out a little, you should not decide that more is better and opt for neon yellow.
Making your resume stand out in a pile of others is difficult, but it can be done without resorting to tactics that may be seen as unprofessional. When seeking a position, you should present yourself in the best light possible and let your skills and experience be the things that highlight you in the eyes of a hiring manager. Cheap stunts have never gotten the job over professionalism and skills. If you seriously want the job, then you need to let the hiring manager see that by showing yourself in the best, most professional light possible.
Scott Rainer is a professional blogger that provides news and information for commercial truck drivers and trucking companies. He writes for TruckersClassifieds.com, the best source to find CDL truck driving jobs, local and owner operator trucking jobs.