By Tina Lu
A few weeks ago, I attended the ANNPower Vital Voices Leadership Forum in New York City. I learned a lot, and luckily, I took notes, so you can learn a lot too. Here are some of the most crucial resume and interview tips, brought to you by ANN Inc. Human Resources executives:
A resume typically consists of five parts: header, professional objective, education, professional experience, and additional information
The header should include your professional email address and voicemail along with your full name, address, and phone number
Your professional objective should include your academic and career goals. It should be 2 to 4 sentences
**Tip: Make sure your name and objective are bigger and bolder than the rest of your resume
Under education, please include the names of all schools you attended after middle school. List schools with the most recent school at the top. If you’re currently attending a school, include your year of anticipated graduation. Also remember to include your GPA, and if you’re in high school, any AP classes you may have taken. Feel free to also include any academic awards you may have received.
Under professional experience, list intern and work experience in chronological order, again starting with the most recent experience. Make sure you include the name of the organization you worked for, your title, and the dates you worked as well as a description of your job.
**Tip: Make sure your tenses match up! If you’re currently working in the job, keep the description in present tense. If you’re not, keep the description in past tense.
Here, include any philanthropic or community involvement you may have. Also include any leadership roles and outside activities you participate in. Don’t be afraid to show a bit of your personality, perhaps explaining what languages you can speak and any of your hobbies or passions.
**Tip: Don’t fluff up your resume with too much information. Keep it clear and clean, so the interviewer knows exactly what to ask you. Also, don’t put anything you’re uncomfortable with talking about; remember, quality over quantity.
**Overall resume tip: Keep your resume to only ONE PAGE. Your interviewer probably isn’t going to take the time to look at the second.
A resume is usually preceded by a cover letter or a formal email. Make sure that your cover letter or email is tailored to the organization and the job you are applying for. Also, be sure to convey passion! Go over all of the names – make sure you spell them all correctly! It may seem silly, but one wrong spelling can turn a potential employer away. Lastly, thank the person in advance for their time; you want to be as gracious as possible!
**Tip: If you’re writing a formal email, you should include the specific person who referred you to the job on the subject line in the format of: “at the suggestion of…”. This will increase the chances of your email being read.
The most popular professional networking site is LinkedIn. If you don’t already have a LinkedIn account, we highly recommend that you get one. Your LinkedIn profile should be purely professional, even more professional than your resume. Leave out any personality and any irrelevant information.
**Tip: Maintaining connections is sometimes more important than having connections. Occasionally check in with the people you’ve worked with before. You never know – they might have an opening for you!
**Tip: ALWAYS send a thank you note within 24 hours. This will make you memorable!
Before the interview, research the company and the interviewers. First, search the interviewers up on LinkedIn and review their job description. Then, review any relevant social media channels. Finally, Google search articles about the company.
- A copy of your resume
- Pen and paper
- Job description
- **Tip: Prepared questions about the company and/or interviewers
- If you have none, always request the business cards of your interviewers and ask about the next steps. Perhaps, inquire about the work environment or ask for more details about the job description. Again, write thank you notes to the interviewers!!
First Impression Essentials:
- Arrive ten minutes early
- Align your experience and passions to the position
- Maintain good posture and eye contact
- Turn off your phone!