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Print your resume and cover letter on matching stationery, either a white or buff colored 24 lb. paper. Stay away from fancy colors. If you have extra money, a 100% cotton watermarked paper is impressive, but not really necessary. Look at copies to make sure they are neatly printed. Buy matching 9 x 12 envelopes as they will stand out more and your good-looking resume won’t have to be folded. If you can print labels, buy clear kind as they look almost as if they were typed on envelope.
Next, we will make sure that you are noticed because we will be e-mailing and sending your resume and following up with a phone call. Yes, this is aggressive and if you do it correctly, you will definitely be noticed. Follow instructions in ad first, so if they say e-mail resume then do that first. Otherwise send paper copies first and send e-mail 2 days later, mentioning that e-mail is a follow-up to your mailed resume. Remember to mark in your Job Search Log date you e-mailed/mailed them.
Finally, prepare to call employer no later than 3 days after your resume has arrived. This is critical as most people don’t do this. Most importantly, develop a phone script to use. If you just say, “I’m calling to see if you got my resume”, then you’ve blown it. Instead show that you know something about company and state that you’d really like to know more about job. Then ask one or two great questions that demonstrate your knowledge and insights. For example, if you are going for a sales position, ask, “I know your company is growing, is this position for a new territory or an existing one?” If they say it’s a new territory, casually mention how you opened a new territory before and delivered 120% of sales targets. As much as possible try to build a rapport with person you’re speaking with, as employers hire people they like. Key tip: watch your energy level and intonation as they are most important factors that define how you will come across. Be friendly, professional and conversational. End by asking if you may call them again next week to see how selection process is progressing.
Remember that most people don’t follow these steps and if you do, your resume will rise to top of stack!
Don Goodman is a nationally known career expert and President of About Jobs (www.gotthejob.com) a Resume Writing and Job Search Assistance firm. Contact him at 800-909-0109 or by e-mail at email@example.com.