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How to Avoid Common Resume, Cover Letter and Interview Mistakes?

How to Avoid Common Resume, Cover Letter and Interview Mistakes?

So you found an ideal job posting and immediately contacted the recruiter all excitedly. Er! You made silly mistakes on your resume, cover letter or/and interview. And you lost the chance of landing yourself an ideal job. And just like that what would have been a stepping stone became another failure.

If this sounds familiar to you, be assured you’re not the only one. Little mistakes can cost you a job when it comes to interviews and resumes. Stick around to know and learn how to avoid such common mistakes.

An Ideal Resume

Your resume is the written showcase of your work experience, personal details, objectives, and achievements. It’s quite common to make errors on a resume. However, sometimes little mistakes cause unrepairable damage that costs you the job, no matter how qualified you are. Here are a few things to take care of on your resume.

  • Impeccable Grammar: The most common mistake in resumes is grammatical errors. Proofread the final copy at least twice. Make sure that you follow one particular style of language. Keep a check on those spellings and punctuations. It is recommended that you ask someone else to proofread the final copy before using it.
  • Be specific: If you’re using a single resume for every interview, you’re doing it wrong. You need to be making little altercations to be more specific about any job role. List down the specific details that suit perfectly for the job you’re applying. Accordingly, prepare a topnotch resume.
  • Be honest: It is understandable that you exaggerate a little on your resume. However, you should not include a plain lie. Do not think it will go unnoticed. Once, a recruiter knows or have a slight clue that you might be lying on your resume, you’re sure to lose the job.
  • Use professional contact information: Strictly avoid using the email address that you came up with back in junior high. Sound professional with your contact details. Not to mention, do not include tons of contact numbers or emails. List only one number, one address and one single email address along with the URL of your website (if any).
  • Cut the cheese: Remember, it’s not a love letter, do not be cheesy. Do not over flatter yourself and strictly don’t under-sell yourself. Mention your positive aspects and highlight what you’re looking for in your next job. You must sound formal and professional. Humour and rude words are a big no.
  • Keep it neat: You resume should be easy on the eye as well as informational. One mistake that people do is making a very fancy resume to impress the recruiters. Remember, it is not a fashion showcase. Do not use too many colours and fonts. Use a simple template and do not make it too long.

An Ideal Cover Letter

If you think that cover letters are a thing of past, you can’t be more wrong. The most prestigious companies require cover letters. A cover letter is your first chance to really present yourself beyond the profession. It’s used to explain employments history and gaps, career objectives, personal views, reasons for a change.

In short, a cover letter is a more detailed and personal version of a resume. Here’s how to make a flawless cover letter.

  • No typos: First and foremost, ensure than your cover letter has no grammatical errors. You must use appropriate language and proofread the letter at least twice before sending it out.
  • Concise and Honest: You must keep the letter short but comprehensive. After all, you never wanna put the recruiter to sleep with your long letter. Don’t try to over-sell yourself, be honest.
  • Do not sound self-centred: Your cover letter is of course about you, but also about the company and its values. You must mention how you can be a good fit for the company and why the company is suitable for you.
  • Not a copy of your Resume: A cover letter is not an exact detailed copy of the resume. Use it wisely to explain and share your work experience, reasons for a change and personal views related to the job.
  • Customization: You must customize your cover letter as per the job requirements. Always mention the name of the recruiter instead of the generic salutations, in case you happen to know his/her name. Undersign your cover letter with the latest date.
  • Cut the cheese: You must not share too much personal information that is not related to work. Avoid being too friendly or Chucky. You should use the appropriate tone of writing. Strictly avoid sounding needy and/or depressed. Never try to include any limericks or one-liners.
  • Sound positive: Keep a positive tone throughout the letter. You should never mention your weak or negative aspects. Try to boast a little about your biggest positive aspects. End the letter on a positive note while sounding courteous.

An Ideal Interview

An impressive resume and cover letter surely is a way to get an opportunity for the interview. However, your interview is much more important than any other pieces of paper for the recruiters. It’s the only chance to impress the people in person and show them that you’re a charmer not just on papers.

From appearing late to dressing inappropriately, many things might go wrong at an interview. Here’s how to avoid any mishap during the interview that can cost you the job.

  • Show up on time: You must be punctual, else you’ll easily leave a bad impression on the interviewer. Try to be at the interview venue 15 minutes before the scheduled time.
  • Dress up appropriately: As they say ‘the first impression is the last impression’. For many people, this stands true. You should dress up professionally.
  • Leave the ego at the door: Do not be rude to anyone during the interview. If the interviewer(s) catches a single glimpse of ego in you, you’re out.
  • Be prepared: Before showing up for the interview, ensure that you have read at least the important data on the company’s website.
  • Do not be over-friendly: While a friendly tone and smile is a nice way to go, do not overdo it. You must avoid sharing any personal story that is irrelevant.
  • Strictly avoid badmouthing: This is probably the most common mistakes that interviewees commit. You should never badmouth anyone during the interview, least of all your previous employers. Be honest and appreciative about the past working experiences.

So there you go, all set to rock that next job posting you see. Good luck!

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