Five Common Resume Mistakes

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

Steve was discouraged because he hadn’t received any interviews from the dozens of applications he had submitted. To help him in the job search process, a colleague in the athletics department suggested two books Steve should read to brush up on his job search skills and techniques. As Steve was reading through these materials, he saw a topic that caught his eye entitled “Five Common Resume Mistakes.” The article suggested that many of the errors people make on their resume includes one of the following five broad mistakes:

Not using the proper format – A resume is read from top of the page down the left margin. Information you want the reader to see needs to be included in this area. A resume needs plenty of white space so the information jumps out at the reader. Be strategic on the use of bold, underlining, and italicized words. Don’t use too much of these specialized formatting techniques or they will lose their effect and your resume will look awful. The font type and size needs to be legible – too many people use fonts sizes that are too small. Also, keep in mind that bulleted information is much easier to read than information written in paragraph form. Finally, remember that your resume is a sales tool. The reader will initially scan a resume in 10-15 seconds and the format is critical in order to show off your skills and accomplishments.

Inappropriate length – Too many people suggest that job hunters should limit their resume to one page. I disagree with this advice. Instead, a resume should be long enough to sell you. It should effectively highlight your skills and accomplishments. A resume that is limited to one page makes you appear too inexperienced and that you don’t have anything to offer the employer. However, don’t make stuff up just so you can extend the length of your resume. Conversely, don’t make your resume too long. Try to limit your resume to no more than 3-4 pages. Don’t confuse your resume with a curriculum vita. A CV is used when you apply for a faculty position at a college or university. It is not appropriate to use a CV when applying for non-faculty positions.

Contact Information – Make sure you use an e-mail address or phone number that you check on a regular basis. Don’t use contact information that you don’t check on a daily basis or consistently when you’re out of the office or on vacation.

Sending a resume in the wrong format – While it is important to apply for jobs in a timely manner, it’s not a race. The first resume to arrive doesn’t win the job. Therefore, take your time and make sure your resume is perfect before sending it to the employer. In most cases it is best to mail the resume to the employer. This is so you can control the way it appears when the employer receives it. In other words you can control the way it looks and you can control the type of paper it is printed on. If you’re sending it electronically, it is best to send it in a pdf file if you can. This is because a pdf file is a picture and it prints out the way it appeared when you saved the document. Too many times a document will change from how it looks on your computer and how it appears on somebody else’s computer. You can’t take chances on the way your resume looks and you need to be able to control its appearance as much as possible.

Misspelled words – Again, take your time and produce an error-free resume. It might not be important to be the first applicant, but it is important that your resume is perfect. Most resumes that include a typo or misspelled words will be eliminated immediately. Competition for jobs is just too keen and employers have too many applicants who present themselves in a professional manner

Quite often when a job opens up within a college athletic department there will be more than 100 or even 200 applicants. With so many applicants, you need to make sure your resume is perfect and error-free. The key to getting the job is knowing the basic fundamental skills that are associated with each stage of the job search process and that you effectively perform each of these skills to the best of your ability. In all you do, you will want to EXECUTE FOR SUCCESS!

Howard Gauthier is an Associate Professor of Athletic Administration at Idaho State University. He is a former collegiate athletic director and collegiate basketball coach. He is also an author of 9 books. Check out his book, Getting Hired In College Sports – 2nd Edition at www.sportscareersinstitute.com or his new book Execute for Success at www.execute4success.com.

*******

The #1 Careers Book in Sports

2nd edition Image

In Getting Hired In College Sports you will discover:

  • The types of jobs that exist in college sports
  • How to plan and navigate your career
  • How to create an effective job search campaign 
  • The proper way to create an effective resume, cover letter, and sales pitch
  • How to properly brand yourself
  • Techniques and strategies to prepare for your interview
  • How to properly prepare yourself for the five types of interview questions 
  • How to properly follow-up after the interview in order to influence the decision of the hiring manager

Only $23.95 Click Here To Purchase 

.
“I have recommended this book to many aspiring sports administrators.  A must read for anyone whom has a goal of working in athletic administration”

-Bill Fusco
Director of Athletics
Sonoma State University

 

 


There Are Over 100 Applicants – Why Should They Hire You?

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

There are over 100 applicants for a particular job, so why should they hire you? This is a question you will probably be asked during your interview.  So I ask you, why should they hire you? Are you more qualified than the other applicants? Do you have the experience or the skills to do the job? Are you a good fit with the organization? When writing your cover letter, you should write the letter with this question in mind. To answer this question, you will want to use your Personal Sales Pitch.

Your Personal Sales Pitch is the foundation for selling yourself in letters and interviews. It should include three sections – a summary of your resume; your skills, abilities and traits; and your current situation. When answering the question, “why should we hire you”, you will want to blend these three sections together so they flow smoothly.

In developing your Personal Sales Pitch, the first section should be a brief overview of your experiences, education, and any accomplishments you have achieved. The second section should outline your top skills, traits, and abilities. And the final part of your sales pitch should explain your current position, your short-term career goals, and it should address why you are looking to leave your current position.

The key to separating yourself from other applicants is to effectively communicate why you are the best candidate for the job. This is accomplished by writing your Personal Sales Pitch, and practice reciting it so you can communicate it with confidence and enthusiasm. Examples of this technique and strategy are outlined in my book Getting Hired in College Sports. Good luck in your job search.

Howard Gauthier is an Associate Professor of Athletic Administration at Idaho State University. He is a former collegiate athletic director and collegiate basketball coach. He is also an author of 9 books. Check out his book, Getting Hired In College Sports – 2nd Edition at www.sportscareersinstitute.com or his new book Execute for Success at www.execute4success.com.

*******

The #1 Careers Book in Sports

2nd edition Image

In Getting Hired In College Sports you will discover:

  • The types of jobs that exist in college sports
  • How to plan and navigate your career
  • How to create an effective job search campaign 
  • The proper way to create an effective resume, cover letter, and sales pitch
  • How to properly brand yourself
  • Techniques and strategies to prepare for your interview
  • How to properly prepare yourself for the five types of interview questions 
  • How to properly follow-up after the interview in order to influence the decision of the hiring manager

Only $23.95 Click Here To Purchase 

.
“I have recommended this book to many aspiring sports administrators.  A must read for anyone whom has a goal of working in athletic administration”

-Bill Fusco
Director of Athletics
Sonoma State University

 

 


Get Organized For Your Upcoming Job Interview

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

Recently I was visiting with a colleague and he shared a story about a time when he had a horrible interview. He wasn’t prepared for the interview and it just didn’t go well. Getting a job in the sports industry takes great preparation and organization. To help you with your organization, I have created a worksheet I call an Interview Preparation Form. It is a worksheet that’s designed to help you prepare for your job interview.

The Interview Preparation Form is a “cheat sheet” you can use to outline your answers to possible interview questions. It also outlines your personal sales pitch, provides bullet points to the stories you want to share when answering questions, provides a list of questions you want to ask the search committee, and it provides an organized method for effectively closing the interview. The Interview Preparation Form consists of the following five sections:

Section OneYour answers to potential interview questions. In this section you will list the questions you believe might be asked in an interview and then provide your corresponding answers.

Section TwoYour personal sales pitch. Your Personal Sales Pitch is the foundation for selling yourself during the interview. Your pitch should include three sections – a summary of your resume; your skills, abilities and traits; and your current situation. Depending on the question you are asked, you can use the pitch in its entirety or just one of the three sections.

Section ThreeOutline five stories you can share with the search committee. People like to hear stories. This section helps you prepare for sharing examples of your experiences through the use of stories.

Section FourQuestions you should ask. You need to be prepared to ask questions that will help you to better understand the job, the organization, the strengths and needs of the organization, and what the search committee is looking for in their new hire. This information will be used during the follow-up stage.

Section FiveClosing the interview. This section is an organized method for concluding the interview. It allows you to sell yourself to the search committee and it lets them know that you are interested in the job.

Once you have written your Interview Preparation Form, you will want to type it out in a Word document and practice answering these questions so they flow easily during the interview. In fact, when interviewing over the telephone, you might want to spread your cheat sheet out on a desk or table so you can glance down and remind yourself of the answer to a particular question. But don’t read directly from your form. The interviewers can tell if you’re reading a script. Instead, just refer to the bullet points of your stories, to the answers of potential interview questions, and to the questions you want to ask the committee. I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to practice answering questions and reciting your personal sales pitch. This practice will allow you to come across fluid and confident in your communications.

I hope this information is helpful. You can read more about the Interview Preparation Form and the entire job search process in my book Getting Hired in College Sports. Remember that it is critical that you are properly prepared for your job search, because ultimately, the job will go to the candidate who is prepared and who effectively executes the basics of the job interview process.

Howard Gauthier is an Associate Professor of Athletic Administration at Idaho State University. He is a former collegiate athletic director and collegiate basketball coach. He is also an author of 9 books. Check out his book, Getting Hired In College Sports – 2nd Edition at www.sportscareersinstitute.com or his new book Execute for Success at www.ThePositiveLeader.org.  

*******

The #1 Careers Book in Sports

2nd edition Image

In Getting Hired In College Sports you will discover:

  • The types of jobs that exist in college sports
  • How to plan and navigate your career
  • How to create an effective job search campaign 
  • The proper way to create an effective resume, cover letter, and sales pitch
  • How to properly brand yourself
  • Techniques and strategies to prepare for your interview
  • How to properly prepare yourself for the five types of interview questions 
  • How to properly follow-up after the interview in order to influence the decision of the hiring manager

Only $23.95 Click Here To Purchase 

.
“I have recommended this book to many aspiring sports administrators.  This is a must read for anyone who wants to work in college athletics”

-Bill Fusco
Director of Athletics
Sonoma State University