Tires are inflated with air so that the flexibility generates heat. The more rubber there is, and the more and faster you flex it, the hotter it becomes, in turn, releasing the tires’ forces. But, because the tire is flexible and inflated with compressed air, the tire flattens under the weight load and contacts the pavement to create the tire’s footprint which produces the forces that drive the bike’s power and stability. Résumés today, like motorcycle tires, need to be similarly flexible to generate a different kind of heat: that of recruiter interest in what the candidate can do for the prospective employer.
The days of the one résumé does all mindset are long gone. Every résumé you submit must have the same flexibility as a motorcycle tire. It must reflect the specific skills and achievements the hiring manager is looking for as outlined in the job posting. Your transferable abilities must create your own personal brand or footprint. The more you match your talent to the requirements listed in the job description, the more heat you will generate and the forces of the hiring process will become more responsive.
There are several variables that interact to produce tire-operating temperature, just as there are variables that can make your résumé appealing to a hiring manager:
Pavement temperature: generating heat or interest in your résumé is accelerated when the industry and specific company you’re applying to are expanding, diversifying and in a high-growth, high- phase. The colder the road your résumé has to travel the less heat it will generate so keep tabs and where the hot opportunities are.
Inflation Pressure: a cardinal rule of résumé writing is: always be honest. Never over-inflate any aspects of your job responsibilities or achievements. Just like an over-inflated tire can be detrimental to the performance characteristics of a motorcycle and jeopardize the safety of the bike, ballooning your background can create a less stable résumé ride, especially when a hiring manager does due diligence about your credentials. Conversely, in much the same way that an under-inflated tire can cause the ride to feel sluggish and unstable, not being your own cheerleader about your career accomplishments and what you can do for a prospective employer can cause your job search to come off the rim if there’s not enough pressure to force the bead into the wheel and demonstrate why you’re the best candidate.
Speed: In these times of every company of note having a website and online presence, Cardinal Sin #1 is not doing your homework and being on top of every single way your skills and abilities can benefit an employer. Just like motorcycle tires need to be hard when cornering at speed so they don’t deform, you knowledge of the company you’re apply to as written in your cover letter and communicated during an interview need to be hard.
Here are a few extra tips:
- Check Your Tire Pressures And Your Résumé Regularly
- Check Both While Cold: most people don’t check and update their résumé until they are forced to look for work. Don’t wait until that happens.
- Use Your Own, High Quality Gauge: You are the expert on your career. Use that knowledge to include all of your achievements and skills as they occur and quantify them whenever possible to reinforce them. Air pressure gauges at gas stations can be off by as many as 30 psi so be your own gauge when it comes to your own tires and your own résumé.
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