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A Review of The National Business Employment Weekly's Guides to Resumes and Cover Letters

By RUTH DE NAMUR

As stated in the foreword by the editor for National Business Employment Weekly, it is "critically important for you to spend time building a resume that reflects both your unique experiences and your potential contributions."

"Resumes" provides an excellent reference for doing so. Besson cautions against trying to put together a resume by simply "filling in the blanks." This will yield a poor success rate when it comes to job searching. The emphasis is on tailoring each resume for the position, thus proving yourself to be the perfect candidate. Although this will not ensure being hired, the likelihood of obtaining an interview increases.

Library research can also expand your knowledge of the company. It can help develop your resume and be very beneficial for the interview process. Developing your resume for a specific position can be a "great mental exercise before an interview." Reading employment ads carefully and addressing every requirement listed will increase the possibility of your resume being considered.

One should set up the employment search office with all the needed supplies and have the proper computer equipment or access to computer equipment, which can produce professional results. Resumes printed with a laser printer using different fonts and typesets are more likely to get noticed than those typed on an old Smith Corona.

Different types of resumes are covered and numerous examples are available. Again, the type of resume to use may depend upon your particular situation, and the best one to use may vary from position to position. Many common sense tips are provided along with "do's and don'ts." Particularly interesting (and funny) are some of the examples of actual resumes which depict what not to do! Chapters are included for first-time job seekers, women returning to work, career changers, and individuals leaving the military. Tips on preparing resumes for internal company positions are also given.

In addition to building the resume, the importance of networking is highly stressed. High percentages of jobs are obtained because of a networking connection. Consequently, this is an area which should not be ignored. Follow up to the resume is another area which requires careful attention. New to the second edition is a chapter on scannable resumes which offers pointers on what to do to ensure success in using this "new" type of resume.

With continual change in the contemporary job market, it is essential to maintain a competitive edge. "Resumes" by Taunee Besson is an excellent overall guide for the individual needing to create, update or improve a resume.

Besson's companion book is titled "Cover Letters." Don't dismiss the importance of the cover letter, she advocates. The cover letter may be the job seeker's only chance to grab the attention of the prospective employer or recruiter.

The job seeker is guided through a step-by-step process of gathering information and condensing it into a clear, concise, powerful statement. The cover letter is meant to let the employer know of your interest in working for his company and your specific qualifications for the position offered. Although this book provides various examples of cover letters, the author is adamant about developing cover letters utilizing one's personal style and targeted to each prospective employer. "You must tailor each cover letter you send if you want it to have maximum impact." Form letters just won't do!

Just like a number of books which address use of the Internet in job searching, the second edition of "Cover Letters" has added a chapter on this topic. Internet job searching is an area still in the development stages, but one which is gaining more and more attention. Thus, it should not be overlooked.

Although often neglected, follow-up correspondence - a thank-you note or letter - can be extremely important. The extra effort could make a difference in getting the job.

Your job search can yield positive results. A thorough reading and incorporation of the advice and hints included in these helpful volumes can assist any determined job-seeker looking for that "perfect position."

All Books by Taunee Besson


 Career Dimensions ● 214-208-1706 ● tauneeb@careerdimensions-dfw.com

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