A compelling resume: 5 things you shouldn’t do

The folks at DocStoc.com invited me to teach an online course on resume writing and interviewing.  If you haven’t dropped in on their video courses, do it. It’s an impressive and ever-growing bank of info on business topics ranging from “raising start-up capital” to mastering social media. How such smart people could believe it’s good idea to put my mug in front of their audience I’ll never know.  But they did, so as I design the course I’ll share some thoughts with you here. First, some temptations to resist while crafting your resume. Some of these might seem obvious, but I view hundreds of resumes weekly, and the follies below inevitably show up in the pile (and subsequently in a dark, moldy corner of the cloud, never to be considered again).

Don’t include a portrait of yourself.

Most of us don’t look like Christie Brinkley. But even if you do, don’t put a headshot on your resume. If you’re counting on your looks to give you the upper-hand, you’re in trouble.  Just don’t do it.  Unless your portrait was taken during an epic laser battle.  With a lynx or other predatory large cat.  Or even just a kinda large/ kinda intimidating house cat.  Or a small, frightened-looking kitten is cool too. Those instances could really add some intrigue to your brand.  Especially with the ladies.  So, to review…don’t use a portrait unless you’re this guy:

Don’t make it complicated.

I’m bad at baking.  My friend, Laura Hawkes of Hawkes Winery, is an excellent baker.  Her advice to me was, “KISS.”

“Huh?  That’s allowed?”

“Keep it simple, stupid.”

Ok, I see what you did there.  The same must be true about your resume.  Here’s the thing. You’ve got like 10 seconds to pique my interest. 6 seconds for most others.  That data came from a compelling study published by TheLadders, a must read if you’re working on your resume.  Maybe that seems cruel to you, since you spent many hours writing your resume and many, many more hours building a career that you’re trying to adequately detail to me on a single sheet of paper. That’s just how it is, cruel as a Wisconsin winter.  Don’t cry.  Just make it count. A well-organized, elegant, easy to navigate resume is more effective than a snazzy, visually challenging, intricate one.  Even if you fear it belies your creativity, it’s best to stick to convention. In six seconds a recruiter will judge whether or not she’ll consider you for the job.  She will not consider learning a new resume language.  If it isn’t blatantly evident why she should be interested after six seconds, you’ll lose her and you’ll never get her back.  Shoot me a note on LinkedIn and I’ll email you a sample .DOC with the format I like to see the best.

Don’t get crazy with fonts.

I love good design. I can spend hours on end looking at typeface books.  The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog. Love that sentence. We’re talking about an art form that’s been around since the 15th century.  Longer maybe.  And now we have access to thousands of free font downloads.

“Hey! Why not add a little flair to the ‘ol resume?  I just got the Ice Cream Cherry Drop Sans font from DaFont.com and I’m ready to go!  The font is whimsical and beautiful and poignant and super impactful, just like me! ”

Once you lose the recruiter, you’ll never get her back. Art is subjective.  We interpret it differently. Our taste is informed by our individual experiences. I don’t much care for Dali’s paintings, though many do.  I also loathe the Lord of the Rings movies, an unpopular stance amongst my peers. By choosing an alternative font that is edgy or arty, you’re betting that you and a recruiter you’ve never met share the same aesthetic taste.  All you stand to win in the bet is having your recruiter NOT throw your resume away.  On the other hand, you risk losing a career opportunity. I don’t think it’s worth it. Just use a tried and true serif font, art-be-damned.

Don’t write an objective.

I’m surprised that this is still a relevant question, but since I see resumes all the time with an “objective” section, I feel like I should address it briefly. I suppose that at some point in history it was important to explain why you were handing someone your resume. Not anymore. Regardless of how we state it, isn’t our objective in submitting a resume for a given job opportunity always the same: TO GET THE JOB! So, let’s put a moratorium on the objective. Instead, use that valuable real estate to provide a “PROFESSIONAL PROFILE”, a snapshot of your qualifications, a brief list of what makes you so incredibly awesome. Think about the “PROFESSIONAL PROFILE” section as an opportunity to give the recruiter a reason to keep reading.  For me an “Objective” is reason enough to stop reading.

Don’t worry about fitting everything onto one page.

My dad was born in the forties and got a job with a large Financial Services firm in the sixties. 30 years later he left that company.  In a simpler time, when people worked toward a pension, when the corporate marketplace was made up of complexly layered companies and highly specialized skillsets, the one page resume made sense.  People were more inclined to sign on for the long (and I mean, very long) haul.  Forcing someone to read more than one page about your job of 30 years is a terrible thing to do! Punishable by death in some countries.  But now it is much less common for employees, especially talented ambitious employees, to stick around one role or one company for a such a long time.  Conversely, hiring companies value a diverse professional background with evidence of an upward trajectory.  I’d argue they value “corporate athleticism” as much as they value loyalty.  So, if you have a compelling and relevant professional background that is deserving of more than one page on a resume, go for it.

I’m glad to discuss at greater length.  Leave your comments below or shoot me a note on LinkedIn.  I give this stuff away like halloween candy.


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Product Marketing Manager- Los Angeles

Élever Professional is seeking an experienced Product Marketing Manager for a swiftly scaling, super-smart, and ultra-fun internet and mobile marketing agency in Los Angeles, CA.  This is an exciting opportunity to join the management team of a proven winner that features a best in class client portfolio. Successful candidates will be skilled technical thinkers but also experienced in Project Management and management of digital marketing campaigns.

THE JOB
The Product Marketing Manager will be charged with owning outbound sales and marketing collateral and deliver presentations to the sales and BizDev teams on just what our client does better than the competition has to offer.  Leveraging their experience in B2B Software and SaaS and past experience partnering with Sales & BizDev, the right candidate should be confident in their ability to grasp and communicate the complexities of the rapidly changing online advertising space.  The Product Marketing Manager will lead the company’s efforts to communicate the firm’s capabilities to target clients and support the sales team by providing the necessary ammo to close deals.

  • Create and execute  campaigns that clearly communicate the strength of the firm’s products and offerings
  • Website management, create and update copy and content, SEO, SEM
  • Create sales collateral that leave the sales team well prepared and consistently able to engage targets with new concepts and campaigns
  • Manage the Go-to-market / launch of new product offerings on a monthly cycle
  • Teach, aid, and support the sales team on issues that involve communicating the firm’s message to clients
  • Perform in-depth competitive analysis and package this data to present compelling case studies on the firm’s benefits over competition

THE CANDIDATE

  • Bachelor’s Degree required, MBA preferred
  • Ability to effectively communicate complex product features to B2B clients
  • Online Ad Agency Experience preferred
  • Strong analytical capabilities
  • 5+ years Experience with a B2B software or SaaS company
  • 5+ years Experience working in a marketing role that partners with a direct sales team
  • Entrepreneurial in nature and able to work and adapt in a rapidly changing and competitive space
  • 3+ Years in a role that interfaces with a development team of technical and engineering folks
  • Must be deadline driven and able to work efficiently while paying close attention to detail
  • Expert knowledge of analytical tools, including Excel, database querying (SQL), relational databases, WebQL a plus
  • Excellent and written and oral communication skills; outstanding presentation skills


Additional Information

Élever Professional is a leading firm in Executive Search and Recruitment. We look forward to receiving your application! All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines. Visit us at http://www.eleverpro.com for more information about our services.

APPLY HERE



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Manager: Online Analytics and Strategy- Austin

THE COMPANY
Élever Professional is seeking experienced Business Analyst candidates for a best-in-breed, rapidly growing Internet company in Austin,TX. This is an exciting opportunity to join the management team of a successful eCommerce company that owns the marketplace in its vertical. Succesful candidates will be skilled technical thinkers but also experienced in Project Management. If the growth opportunity alone isn’t appealing, the company is headquartered in Downtown Austin, a short walk from Stubb’s world famous BBQ.

THE JOB
The Manager of Strategy, BI , and Analytics will perform and report valuable statistical analysis that will have a great impact on the company’s development and strategic decisions. Must have Project Management experience and be up for the challenge of a diverse and ever-changing job description, as the company is a late stage start-up and will deploy Business Analysts cross functionally improve overall effectiveness and efficiency.

* Assist in the business decision making process by developing analytical models to estimate the impact of different scenarios
* Deliver accurate results based on economic, financial, and statistical analysis
* Predict and proactively communicate factors affecting performance to management team
* Identify opportunities to improve processes and focus on providing solutions and delivering results
* Monitor and improve performance of existing algorithms and predictive models
* Present strategic and tactical recommendations based on quantifiable data
* Assist in the business decision making process by developing analytical models to estimate the impact of different strategy scenarios

THE CANDIDATE

* Must possess extensive experience modeling complex business scenarios
* Must be a Microsoft Excel Ninja, Guru, Rockstar (you get the point).
* Knowledge of internet related business metrics including SEM/SEO/CPC/CPA
* Experience with Web Analytics Software such as Google Analytics, Omniture
* Must be able to adapt to changing needs quickly. While our client is well established, they foster a frenetic, collaborative, start-up environment and the parameters of the job are quick to change!
* Able to work with different business units and teams to gather complete datasets and communicate findings to internal decision makers
* Superior problem-solving skills, self-motivation and the capacity to keep cool-headed under pressure and tight deadlines
* Excellent and written and oral communication skills; outstanding presentation skills
* Expert knowledge of analytical tools, including Excel, database querying (SQL), relational databases, WebQL a plus
* Ability and willingness to work independently and also manage other analysts.
* Bachelor’s degree or higher in computer science/data processing, mathematics, statistics, finance, or related discipline
* MBA from top tier university preferred.
* Must live or be willing/able to relocate to Austin, TX (Relocation compensation provided for right candidate)

Additional Information

Élever Professional is a leading firm in Executive Search and Recruitment. We look forward to receiving your application! All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines. Visit us at http://www.eleverpro.com for more information about our services.

Sr. Web Developer- Los Angeles, CA

THE COMPANY
Élever Professional is partnering with an exciting e-commerce (merchant services) start-up out of Los Angeles on the build-out of their development and engineering team. Our client is well funded and well positioned to scale at an impressive rate. Current openings include multiple Developerroles to develop a presentation tier of the product application using ASP.NET, Javascript, HTML, XHTML. This is an exciting opportunity to get on board with a start-up that is well equipped to experience huge growth.

THE JOB
* Develop a presentation tier of the product application using ASP.NET, Javascript, HTML, XHTML
* Participate in setting front-end coding standards and guidelines
* Identify and document best practices
* Provide architectural guidance and direction for the presentation tier
* Efficiently manage workload to meet project deadlines under rigorous code release schedules
* Perform quality assurance on all new code from inception through integration, staging and production environments
* Be an evolving expert on new technologies, researching, recommending and implementing technology advancements
* Work cross-functionally with web development team, design team, product management and Quality assurance to optimize browser functionality, SEO and user experience
* Must live in the Los Angeles/Orange County area or be willing to relocate at own expense

THE CANDIDATE
* 4+ years of experience in software development
* Expert proficiency in browser based technologies: HTML5, CSS3, Javascript, AJAX, ASP.NET etc.
* Exposure to test driven development required
* Knowledge of cross-browser, cross-platform, and design constraints on the web
* Experience working collaboratively using Version Control systems
* Prior work experience on a large Customer support sites
* Experience with various Software development processes, experience with XSLT based templating preferred
* Prior experience working with payment based web applications preferred
* Knowledge of design software (Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, etc) preferred

TECHNICAL SKILLS REQUIRED:

* CSS3, ASP.NET, Javascript, HTML5, XHTML

* ADOBE CS experience a plus

Additional Information

Competitive Compensation + Benefits + Stock Options

Position is full-time/permanent

Relocation compensation is not available

Élever Professional is a leading firm in Executive Search and Recruitment. We look forward to receiving your application! All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines. Visit us at http://www.eleverpro.com for more information about our services.

VP Marketing & Business Development-Austin

THE COMPANY
Élever Professional is seeking top VP Marketing & Business Development candidates for a leading eCommerce client company in Austin, TX. This is an exciting opportunity to lead the marketing and business development efforts of a rapidly growing Internet start-up. Our client’s next VP of Marketing & Business Development will be a motivated visionary and an indefatigable team leader. This is an opportunity for a proven senior marketing leader in the Internet space to join the Executive team of a promising, best-in-breed and rapidly growing eCommerce start-up.

JOB DESCRIPTION

* Manage and build a marketing team of 25+
* Take full ownership of Marketing P & L and manage entire Marketing Budget
* Work cross functionally with Development and Product Management teams to implement marketing campaigns and initiatives
* Manage full life cycle of integrated marketing campaigns- from conceptualization to execution, and through successful analysis
* Lead Biz Dev efforts and generate potential corporate partnership opportunities
*VP Marketing & Business Development reports directly to CEO and will be instrumental in shaping corporate strategy. VP Marketing and Business Development will regularly present to the company’s board.

QUALIFICATIONS
* 10+ years in Marketing and Business Development with a name-brand eCommerce company, marketplace model a +
* Must possess a unique blend of brand vision, analytical expertise, excellence with the written word, and the confidence to lead a highly talented, collaborative team.
* Top-Tier MBA or work equivalence preferred
* Experience working cross functionally with Strategy, Reporting & Analytics, Product Development and Product Management to turn data collected during market research into tangible product improvements
* Must have experience leading multi-channel integrated marketing campaigns including online and traditional campaigns, Public Relations, and Business Development
* Must possess strong and persuasive oral communications skills and be a great presenter.
* 2-3 years experience in Product Management or similar function preferred
* Experience working with successful organizations in different start-up stages preferred.

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Director of Sales and Business Development-Internet

The Company
Élever Professional is partnering with an exciting e-commerce start-up out of Los Angeles on the build-out of their Sales and Business Development teams. Our client is well funded and well positioned to scale at an impressive rate, and the Sales Director’s role will weigh heavily into their success. The successful candidate will possess a combination of sound business acumen and a strong sales drive. Since this is a start-up entering a rapid growth period, this position will require a hands-on and cross functional will to win. It is not for the meek. Experience selling SaaS related products required. Experience with merchant services products preferred. The Sales Director reports directly to the EVP of Sales.

THE JOB
– Build and maintain productive relationships with senior retail executives, especially e-commerce, online gaming, music, and entertainment
– Demonstrate the value propositions of client products and services in onsite meetings and through written and other communications
– Manage a sales cycle from the initial meeting all the way through contracts, legal review and on through execution and implementation
– Be comfortable selling innovative, high-value merchant services partnerships to SMB’s and Enterprise partners alike
– Recruit, hire and mentor a sales team of Junior Executives
– Work across Product Marketing and Product Management lines to maximize sales-enablement materials and product optimization
-Set ambitious sales targets and regularly destroy them
The ideal candidate will be entrepreneurial in spirit, lives for a challenge and won’t be afraid to expand his/her comfort zone. A start-up is not for the clock-puncher, but the upside potential of this organization is infinite.

THE CANDIDATE
– BA/BS or equivalent education (Top-tier MBA preferred)
– 5 years work experience minimum, preferably within the Internet/e-commerce or related industries
– 3+ years experience in business development and/or sales as a top performer.
– Excellent communications and problem solving skills. Ability to make sound business decisions in a dynamic, fast-paced environment.
– A will to win. Must be driven to achieve personal and team goals.
– A client specialist: must love working with customers and partners and be creative in making (and keeping) them happy
– Cloud-based CRM proficiency a must (Salesforce, SugarCRM, NetSuite, etc). Must also know your way around the MS Office Suite.
– Desire to constantly learn and process new information about the industry, the company’s solution, its partners, and the competitive landscape
– Open to 25-40% travel
– Must be in the Los Angeles area or willing to relocate. Relocation assistance available for right candidate.

Additional Information

Competitive Compensation + Benefits + Equity
Telecommute considered but must be on the West Coast
Élever Professional is a leading firm in Executive Search and Recruitment. We look forward to receiving your application! All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines. Visit us at http://www.eleverpro.com for more information about our services.

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