Master Career Counselor

Carla Hunter, President of Career Span, Inc. is a Master Career Counselor (MCC) by the National Career Development Association and a Certified Career Coach by the National Board for Certified Counselors. She is an expert in writing resumes, effective job search strategies and interviewing success. Most recently, with over 20 years of navigating the complexity of today's world of work, she published "Finding Your Place in the World of Work", a career interest inventory (2014) and CareerView, an iPad app. As a private practice career counselor and a workforce development consultant, this blog is Carla's trove of ideas, trends, forecasts, and career tips for finding meaningful work.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Marriage Made In Heaven? Your Resume and the Employer's Culture

The next series of blog posts will focus on the critical bond between a successful resume and the company culture of your potential employer. Many if not all jobseekers fail to consider this important influence in resume writing, interview preparation or accepting a job offer.  What I'm about to tell you can alter the course of how you job search and save a lot of energy and valuable time.

Let's start with a macro approach to understanding the symbiotic relationship of your resume style and the company culture of your potential employer.


Today's workplace has three basic categories of employer culture. The descriptions I'm going to share with you aren't based on size (small, medium, large) or sector  but upon acceptable norms, leadership and behaviors within the company's culture.  The key to a successful resume, interview and job search is to identify a company with a culture you admire, value and attract. In the end, this will help you sustain employment and acclimate to workplace expectations.  Your resume becomes the match-maker.

Right this moment, your resume may fit one type of employer but not the employer you want to attract. The culture doesn't match you. The values aren't congruent.  You're frustrated and unhappy with your search efforts. In fact, you've almost given up because there doesn't seem to be anyone hiring.

The reality is your resume may not be tailored in the ideal or exact format that will marry your talent to the right employer who needs your skills and a company culture that values your contribution.   

Let me illustrate what I mean.

Imagine you're fishing.  You have an expensive rod and reel with the strongest line, sinker and hook available. You spared no expense and did all your research to determine the perfect rod.  Does that guarantee you will catch a fish?  Of course not.  You can know without proper bait and the availability of fish;  no rod, reel and hook will ever succeed regardless of how much money you spent.

The job market is the same.  You've worked hard. You've been a great success.  You have much to bring to the table. But, no one is biting.

Your resume is the bait to attract the best employer for you.  Your critical tasks:

1. Identify the right species that will want and eat your bait.
2. Locate the body of water they live in.
3. Determine their feeding times.

The result could be amazing.  Your resume if written to match the company culture, will weed out employers you don't want to work for. After all, you are interviewing too.  This method works like a moth is drawn to a flame because it resonates with an employer and speaks identical language.  If it doesn't then you're not fishing in the right pond and you'll be foreign to the environment.  One more piece of advice:

NEVER use artificial bait.

Next post: What are the three types of employers and the resume formation that matches each one?

Stay tuned.

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