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Help with CV's and Cover Letters
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peterthephoenix Offline
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Post: #1
Help with CV's and Cover Letters
Hey guys,

I recently finished my undergraduate business degree in marketing and management.

I'm looking to find a entry level-job in marketing/advertising/media etc. but it's pretty difficult at the moment.


Any tips on how to make your CV or cover letter stand out/better?

Any stories on how you got a particular job?

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03-14-2012 08:00 PM
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Tuthmosis Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
First suggestion: take the apostrophe out of "CV's."

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03-15-2012 12:58 AM
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Hencredible Casanova Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
(03-14-2012 08:00 PM)peterthephoenix Wrote:  Hey guys,

I recently finished my undergraduate business degree in marketing and management.

I'm looking to find a entry level-job in marketing/advertising/media etc. but it's pretty difficult at the moment.


Any tips on how to make your CV or cover letter stand out/better?

Any stories on how you got a particular job?

Yeah. Make your CV about what you can offer the employer and how you meet their needs. That's what it's all about. No one cares about your life changing trip to ____ last year or what your deep convictions are. Employers just want to see that you are bringing something to the table that justifies hiring you at all.

Make sure you understand the position you are applying for and make sure that your CV includes action words that are in the job description. That's important for many reasons. I'd say the most important reason is because the person who first sees your CV is not usually the person who actually makes the hiring decision. The person who usually sees your CV is in HR and either looks through applicant resumes manually or with some type of software that "scores" a CV based on how closely it matches the job description. This person simply makes the decision as to whether or not you get the actual interview.

This is tedious, and not easy, but it's what you have to do to get the job.

When you get the interview, keep the same philosophy in mind. There's no need to get anxious or nervous about the interview. The only thing it's designed to do, if the company is legit, is to gauge whether or not you are appropriate for the position. Just like how politicians never self-criticize when asked accusatory questions from an interviewer or debate moderator, answer interview questions the same way by highlighting your strengths and how they relate to the job. Even the question, "so, tell me about yourself" is an opportunity they are giving you to do that. Rarely do employers ask very direct questions. Most of them allow you to use your imagination as to how your experience relates to the opening that they have.

After you are done, be sure to ask questions. Think broadly and how this position is bigger than yourself. Ask what their goals are for 2012, for example, and how your position can help them get there. Ask your boss how you can help him/her get to where they want to go. It's all about relationships and good teamwork.

PM if you get to an interview.
(This post was last modified: 03-15-2012 01:18 AM by Hencredible Casanova.)
03-15-2012 01:11 AM
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AlphaTravel Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
If you're sending it on paper, buy some nice high quality paper that's not the standard cheap white stuff and print it on that. Will instantly stand out before they've even read it.
03-15-2012 07:19 AM
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Thomas the Rhymer Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
(03-14-2012 08:00 PM)peterthephoenix Wrote:  Hey guys,

I recently finished my undergraduate business degree in marketing and management.

I'm looking to find a entry level-job in marketing/advertising/media etc. but it's pretty difficult at the moment.


Any tips on how to make your CV or cover letter stand out/better?

Any stories on how you got a particular job?

Regarding cover letters: Never say stuff like 'I want this job because I'm a people person' or 'I want a challenge', rather say 'I am a suitable candidate for this position because I have relevant training/experience, such as...'

Whether you CV is good or not depends more on the subjective taste of the person reading it. You may find that you need to tinker with your CV slowly over time to get it up to a universal standard. Kind of like which ramble you use when talking to girls.

I got all my jobs via networking with people in my field. The current jobs I'm gunning for are also opportunities seized through my network of acquaintances/friends/colleagues. I'm a friendly guy and I just mention that I'm looking for opportunities to people I know, and sometimes things crop up.

It's a bit a game, and networking can be hard work for a natural introvert such as myself. It has strong similarities to gaming girls. Roosh really needs to get around to writing 'Bang Employment'. That said, daygaming really helped me out of my shell and gave so much more confidence to chase jobs (from getting laid to getting paid!), so in a weird roundabout way reading Day Bang may help.

I'm busy rereading John Davies the $100,000+ career (which I found instrumental to getting my current opportunities in the pipeline). I'm planning to do a detailed breakdown later on, but for now some cool points from it, off the top of my head :

- Memorise an excellent story about yourself that shows how you manage a tough situation or highlights your talents (I use a story about a botched operation I was doing that nearly caused a loss of a life, still sends sweat down my neck. Or the story of how I took over a resuscitation and brought someone back from the dead. Still gives me a 'fuck yeah' feeling.)

- Do cold approaches. Call companies and people and ask them if they have opportunities, and even if they don't, if they could recommend someone you could talk to to learn more about what is available.

- Be a friendly, interesting dude. And the more indirect you can go, the better. Don't say 'I want a job.' Rather go, 'Hi, I'm interested in your company and would like to learn more about it, incidentally I'm on the search for opportunities to work for a company like yours.'

- Your initial cold approaches will suck. You will be brushed off and rejected. You will feel like a retard and a loser. But carry on.

- Be polite. Always ask if its a good time to talk. A person busy with a hectic client does not have time to listen to you or give you an opportunity, rather call them when they're not busy

- Eventually your cold approaching may win you a referral to someone else who may have an opportunity for you. This has a higher rate of success for job placement. Even though the first few people who you called saw you as a complete stranger, and just wanted to pass you on to someone else, that someone else will feel like you've been partly vetted.

- Keep track of the people you've called, always drop a thank you email or note, and call them again some time down the line; they might remember you and a new opportunity may have opened where there was none before.

- The book claims that you should land a job in the ballpark figure of 100 introductions. That's not 100 cold calls, but rather the introductions resulting from your cold calls. That requires a lot of legwork and meetings and calling - it's a job getting a job! But I believe the claim - if you have some game then people will like you, and sometimes that's more important than whether you have the skills/experience.

Another book I'm busy with is 'What color is your parachute?' It has some great stuff in it on networking and why its the best way to get a job; eventually I might do a breakdown on it as well.

I've also reviewed and did a breakdown of a jobfinding ebooklet: http://www.rooshvforum.com/thread-11244.html
Skim the breakdown and then download the full ebooklet if you want more.

Anyway, I hope some of the above helps!
03-15-2012 10:58 AM
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
(03-14-2012 08:00 PM)peterthephoenix Wrote:  Any tips on how to make your CV or cover letter stand out/better?

Any stories on how you got a particular job?

Yes- understand what the prospective employer's (not yours) pain points and needs are. Do a little research into it. It WILL pay off. Position your CV and letter in a way that makes it OBVIOUS that you're the guy who can solve THEIR (not yours) problems.

I'm always shocked how people think the process is about THEM. It's not. No one gives a f--- about band and campus earth day leadership. It's about a company solving a problem. If you understand the problem and communicate successfully to them that you understand it, you're going to do well. Be like a great salesman- know their problems better than them. If you do this, generally only an inside job/premediated pick can screw you over.

I once got a gig that involved commuting to a tropical country 6-7 times a year by researching the situation, reading local papers, etc. When it came time to interview, I read articles they didn't (don't ever assume the employer has it all together), and they were shocked I knew as much as them. Obviously I got the job. I only researched hard because I didn't want to lose the opportunity for others to pay for me lounging around 5 star hotel pools (& no bosses within 2000 miles)... but now it's just how I do it. It works.

Also, if its a super huge company, make sure your s--- contains all the keywords necessary for the computer to file it into the right place. Mirror the posting announcement language somewhat. Good luck.
(This post was last modified: 03-15-2012 11:17 AM by 46..)
03-15-2012 11:13 AM
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Tigre Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
Interesting that you're the one with the marketing degree, yet you're asking us what's the best way to proceed. Smile

What things differentiate you, making you a superior candidate to your competition?

What have you done on your own initiative to make you stand out? Work experience? Portfolio?

What are your friends from the same graduating class doing? How did they get their jobs? Can you leverage their work positions to get yourself interview appointments or internships?

If you're doing nothing beyond responding to posted vacancies, you're only scratching the surface of the market's potential. You need to be networking a lot, get as many people looking for opportunities on your behalf as you can.
03-15-2012 12:03 PM
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Caramel Communist Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
(03-14-2012 08:00 PM)peterthephoenix Wrote:  Hey guys,

I recently finished my undergraduate business degree in marketing and management.

I'm looking to find a entry level-job in marketing/advertising/media etc. but it's pretty difficult at the moment.


Any tips on how to make your CV or cover letter stand out/better?

Any stories on how you got a particular job?

Structure your cover letter around:
Increasing sales
Cutting costs
Improving customer lifetime value
Developing effective acquisition and retention plans (marketing) especially if you have digital experience (SEO, Keyword Management, Social Media - etc).

If you had a job in college and you improved something...talk about it..if you saved business talk about it...corporations are looking for entrepreneurs, ppl who have ideas that increase sales, cut costs, and lengthen LTV and ppl who will buy into whatever their speel is....also use glassdoor.com/indeed.com to see others interview feedback about the company.
03-15-2012 12:17 PM
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RexImperator Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
I really hate writing cover letters. Such a pain in the butt.

Is there a decent method for writing them quickly?
05-27-2016 01:16 PM
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XXL Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
Write your resume from your potential employer standpoint. Think of who he's looking for and what he would like to read that would meet his needs.

Get rid of everything unrelated to the job position you're applying for and highlight relevant things. Everything you put there should have something in common with that job. If it's not then make it look like it is. For example, under every company you worked for before you can shortly describe your duties there in a way that it seems like it has something in common with the job you applying for.

Similarly with the interview. You only tell them things about yourself that fit that position and company. "Tell me about yourself" is the easiest question there is cause you have your opportunity to present yourself as best candidate and highlight how your strengths, experience and personality fits the job.

In short, it's all about them, not you.
05-27-2016 04:18 PM
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XXL Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
(05-27-2016 01:16 PM)RexImperator Wrote:  I really hate writing cover letters. Such a pain in the butt.

Is there a decent method for writing them quickly?

Rough sketch is to write what you can do, how you used that in previous companies, how you can use it for this company. The more specific the better. If you're good at customer service for example, don't write that you have great interpersonal skills cause that means nothing. Be more specific, describe how you handle tough people and random stressful situations, what you were able to do before, how useful it will be in their company, etc.

Do not repeat your CV. Resume is just list of you skills and experience. Cover letter is more about why, how, when, what, in terms of your past experience as well as you future work.
05-27-2016 04:38 PM
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RexImperator Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
Are there services where you can send your resumé and job postings and they will write cover letters and reformat things for you (basically complete the process of applying for the job)?
05-28-2016 11:54 AM
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Easy_C Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
You still need a good CV. Networking will get your resume forwarded as a referral. However, a decent % of the time the first response you're going to get from someone you contact will be "send me a copy of your resume". This means that they want to see whether your resume is good enough for you to have a realistic shot.

PM me and I can review. If you've read my previous posts you'll know why I think I can help.

For format here's a good one: http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/in...e-template

Notice that their format uses a table to keep everything perfectly aligned. Doing likewise is recommended.
(This post was last modified: 05-28-2016 11:16 PM by Easy_C.)
05-28-2016 11:16 PM
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RexImperator Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
I think my resumé looks decent enough and I had a university career office look it over and give me pointers, but it's coming up with cover letters that's the issue.

For instance, suppose I find find positions I'd like to apply to. It could easily take me all day to write five different letters.

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et Thybrim multo spumantem sanguine cerno
05-29-2016 07:50 PM
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Praetor Lupus Offline
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RE: Help with CV's and Cover Letters
(05-29-2016 07:50 PM)RexImperator Wrote:  I think my resumé looks decent enough and I had a university career office look it over and give me pointers, but it's coming up with cover letters that's the issue.

For instance, suppose I find find positions I'd like to apply to. It could easily take me all day to write five different letters.

Write a bullet point list of everything you have to offer a potential employer. Add to this list over time as you gain new skills or spot requirements in job adverts that you realise suddenly that you can meet.

Start your letter by saying that you spotted the advert, and why, briefly, you are interested. This should only be a sentence, such as you're after more responsibility, etc., almost as an afterthought. Employers will ask themselves why an applicant would want to apply, especially if they're already installed in a comfortable position, but this is just to put their mind at ease. They don't care about your ambitions.

If you understand nothng else from the 48 Laws Of Power, understand this: you have to appeal to people's self-interest. This is such an absolutely key aspect of life in general that you will be rudderless without it. With this in mind, your next step is to write very succinctly, using your list, why you are suited to fulfilling the advertised role. Make sure you address each requirement listed. Use very brief examples to back up each point. If you can provide one statistic, even better. Don't go overboard but say something like "I increased my sales by 25%, compared with an average of 10% by my colleagues over the same period." Being able to quantify examples is powerful. Don't add tons of detail. You add more details at the interview - and be prepared to do just that with every claim you've made.

Finally, add some more useful qualities or skills you believe their business may find useful, that aren't listed as requirements but could be of value in the position.

Don't write very long letters, because employers don't have time to read pages of drivel.

You will have to write a unique letter for each position but that doesn't mean you can't follow a simple formula to get them done quicker.

"The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilised community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others...in the part which merely concerns himself, his independence is, of right, absolute." - John Stuart Mill, On Liberty
(This post was last modified: 05-30-2016 05:00 AM by Praetor Lupus.)
05-30-2016 04:59 AM
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