“If your résumé contains relevant content, customized to the requirements specific job you seek, and if the format is eye-catching, the number of pages is irrelevant. You will be interviewed.”
– Don Burrows
The CEO liked the relevant content of Greg’s 4-page custom résumé and immediately wanted to meet him
‘I had to meet the engineer who thinks like this. This demonstrates that you are not a typical engineer, but an engineer who will be disruptive. I need that in my company.’
– Said the CEO to Greg P., now Director of Engineering in a high-tech company
Word around the company was that layoffs were coming
Just before Christmas, Greg, an engineer, married with one child and another on the way, learned he was on the hit list.
Forewarned, he alerted his network. Someone told him of an opening for a director of engineering. His education, engineering creativity, accomplishments, and skills made him a “perfect fit.”
However . . .
They would stop accepting résumés in 48 hours
In this situation, a typical job-seeker would take the path of least resistance and follow the “Boilerplate Herd.”
“Boilerplate Herders” are found at every compensation and organizational level. They are job seekers who have abdicated their right to present themselves as they see fit. Often, they have dumbed down their résumés to fit into two pages, because “they” say no one will read more than two pages.
Boilerplate Herders have unknowingly been brainwashed into doing what “they” – lazy recruiters – expect them to do: Submit a boilerplate, generic, two-page, activities-based, one-size-fits-all, “dates-and-duties,” résumé that recruiters can visually scan and decide on, one way or the other, in about seven seconds.
No joke. Seven seconds.
“Boilerplate Herders” use what I call “Spaghetti Résumés.” They are generic credentials for opportunities with specific requirements. Because they don’t take the time to create custom credentials, they blend in, like spaghetti in a bowl.
Greg’s competitors were “Boilerplate Herders.”
Greg wasn’t. With his custom résumé and targeted cover letter, he was the MEATBALL on top of the plate of generic spaghetti.
The recruiter recognized a TOP CANDIDATE when she saw one, and quickly called Greg for an interview.
Imagine for a moment how Greg felt. He was about to be laid off, and suddenly he was an irresistible TOP CANDIDATE for a promotion. How would you feel?
How did he make himself a TOP CANDIDATE?
He followed my Top Candidate Custom Résumé System™. His first step was to identify his most recent Relevant Professional Accomplishments that matched the position requirements. He then wrote a 250-word essay for each one.
For each accomplishment, he thought through and wrote about what he did, how he did it, why he did it, and the quantified results of each achievement. Writing the accomplishments essays prepared him to interview intelligently, and gave me the material I needed to create his new custom résumé.
What I did
To ensure he made the 48-hour window, I dropped what I was doing, and:
- Edited his essays into 6-sentence Custom Accomplishment Statements that matched the job specs,
- Analyzed his essays to identify the Special Skills & Abilities he used for each accomplishment,
- Created Accomplishments and Skills Data Banks that he can keep current throughout his career to win interviews as a TOP CANDIDATE whenever he want to, from now until he retires,
- Formatted and wrote his new custom résumé, and
- Wrote his targeted You Seek / I Offer cover letter.
He made the deadline. In the time before they called him for an interview, I drew on my 18 years of in-house recruiting experience and conducted practice interviews with him. We practiced using his new custom résumé and cover letter and the actual job specifications. With his solid interview self-confidence, he rocked his first round of interviews.
The recruiter told him he was the youngest of the five finalists, and that for positions at this level, the CEO never interviewed finalists. He just reviewed their résumés and left the final decision to the field.
The CEO wants to meet you
A short time later, the astonished recruiter told Greg that, because of his custom four-page résumé and targeted cover letter, the CEO wanted to meet him.
Greg interviewed with the CEO, COO, CFO and Corporate HR Director.
He was hired within a week. The other four finalists – the “Boilerplate Herd” – disappeared. POOF!
The CEO ignored the Blend-In Mediocrity Mindset of the Boilerplate Herd.
He was looking for Disruptive, Stand-Out Excellence . . . and he recognized it when he saw it.
Because the relevant content of his résumé was customized to the job, and the format was eye-catching, the CEO didn’t care about the length. With increasing enthusiasm, he read every word.
Please re-read that last paragraph. It is critical to your future.
When uninformed people tell you your résumé can’t be more than two pages because no one will read more than two pages, they may be well-intended, but they are using “fake news” to force you into a box that does not fit you. Their advice has no basis in fact. Ignore them. Recall Greg’s story, have confidence in yourself, and commit to making yourself a TOP CANDIDATE each time you apply, from now until you retire.
To see other examples of being the MEATBALL, check out the other 11 success examples under SUCCESSES.
While you’re there, please click on PACKAGES to see my services that could help you become the MEATBALL and win interviews from now until you retire.
Finally, please know you don’t need to pay me or anyone else to create your custom credentials. You are perfectly capable of creating your own custom Meatball résumés and targeted cover letters. You have 12 real-life examples on my site, and when you visit https://lifetimecareerplan.com, you’ll find links to my DIY Résumé-Writing books.
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BE THE MEATBALL. NOT THE SPAGHETTI.