Bad resumes are a source of laughter for recruiters

By Lore Croghan New York Daily News (KRT)

NEW YORK – A resume is not an ad for the personals section of the newspaper.

But the guy who sent this resume to job recruiter Jon Reed didn’t seem to know the difference:

“Makes a strong and commanding presence – tall (6-feet-4, 235 pounds), athletic, sophisticated and mature,” he wrote.

“Engaging personality with quick wit, warm smile, happy demeanor, high energy level and enthusiasm. Effervescent and fun to be around.”

Reed and his colleague Rachel Meyers have seen mountains of bad resumes in their work as recruiters – so bad they’re funny, except to the sorry souls who are trying to use them to get jobs.

Over the years, Reed and Meyers kept the worst ones in their “joke file” – which they broke open to write a new humor book called “Resumes from Hell.”

It’s filled with excerpts from real resumes, with the names changed to keep the job applicants from dying of embarrassment.

Beyond all the funny stuff, there are serious lessons to be learned.

The authors offered up their own Dirty Dozen – the of the biggest mistakes people make with their resumes.

Avoid them at all costs.

-Using distracting fonts, formats or graphics.

-Taking an overly informal, conversational tone. This is wrong whether it’s in the resume itself or your cover letter, your e-mail correspondence with your potential employer – or the e-mail address you use.

E-mail addresses are free – get a new one for your job search that gives you a professional identity, Reed said. You can do better than the job applicants who sent him resumes from [email protected] and [email protected].

-Including your salary requirements. It’s too soon to bring up the subject of money when you haven’t even landed a job interview.

“You need to obtain as many job offers as possible – then attack the issue of money from a position of strength,” Reed said.

-Dissing your past and present employers. “This makes you look bad,” Meyers said. “It signals you aren’t part of the team.