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June 05, 2008

Career Questions to Think About This Summer

As we head into the steamy summer months, we're getting ready to tackle the hot topics on job searching, life at work and career development here on the Monster Blog. Here are a few questions we're thinking about for upcoming posts:

  • Does the length of your resume actually matter? We're seeing some resumes as short as 140 characters -- and others that seem to carry on endlessly. Is there really a sweet spot?

  • How do you follow up with employers? You’ve sent in your resume, and now it’s time to wait for a response. Or is it? What’s the best way to be proactive with your job search and get through to the right people?

  • Should you say you're pregnant? You're about to get hired and haven't yet mentioned -- nor is it necessarily obvious from your physical appearance -- that you'll need to go on maternity leave in a few months. Are you obligated or expected to speak up?

  • Why shouldn't you work remotely? Here's what Seth Godin wrote in a recent blog post: "It's hard for me to see why you'd bother having someone come all the way to an office just to sit in a cube and type." Factor in the tools and technology that allow us to work just as well from our living rooms or the local coffee shop as we could from company headquarters, along with record-breaking prices at the gas pump, and we're wondering the same thing.

We'll be posing these and other questions to job seekers, community members, employers and voices from the blogosophere throughout the summer, and we'll report back on what they're telling us.

But we want to hear from you, too. What burning on-the-job and get-the-job questions are on your mind? Leave us a comment below.

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Posted by Bryan on June 5, 2008 at 04:50 PM in The Daily Grind | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)


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I think the sweet spot for a resume is still one page. It's not a Twitter post, for goodness' sakes! A recruiter will still need to discern info from your resume so it needs to be long enough to supply worthwhile information. If it's too long it won't get read and they might miss the good parts, so I think one page is ideal.

Posted by: Erika | Jun 6, 2008 11:22:10 AM

Yes, a resume length post would be great.

I've always stuck with 1 page, but does that mean 1 page with size 10 font or size 12? Margins?

I seem to get a different answer from job I apply for.

I can't imagine anyone would do a 140 character resume and expect it to be taken seriously, but I have seen "intro resumes" like that with their information on an attached CD with the resume and a portfolio.

Posted by: Concetta | Jun 18, 2008 1:13:20 AM

I have over 20 yrs of customer service and management experience. I'm sending out resumes and cover letters to selected companies, but not getting any call backs... very frustrating. I'm afraid that my lack of a college degree automatically lands my application in the circular file. Thoughts?

Posted by: marz | Jun 18, 2008 11:54:13 AM

I think a resume should be as long as your career...that is, if you have 20 years real-world experience - like me - then you should have a resume that reveals all of that experience. That'd likely print out as 2.5-3 pages in Word. If you're a recent college grad, one page is fine. As a hiring manager, what raises red flags with me is a 3 page resume from a recent college grad (stretching it) or a 1 page resume from someone with 15-20 years of experience (what are they hiding?).

Posted by: MichaelF | Jun 18, 2008 12:51:37 PM

I am a 3rd sem MBA student with marketing and IT as specialisation.My college is not a very reputed one among the big companies.I really want to start my career in the field of IT marketing but the startup jobs in this field are not very satisfactory.so plz advice me how to get a kick start in this field.

deepak sharma

Posted by: deepak sharma | Jun 19, 2008 1:29:26 AM

I worked in a very unique industry--finding missing heirs in regard to probated estates. The niche was very small yet competitive, but through creativity and diligence, I was often able to give my company the info needed to get to the missing heir first before the ctn (thru obits, DMV checks, death records, etc. Unfortuantely, I'm having trouble in my resume to explain exactly what I did. It was a combo of research, sales and public relations wrapped up in a matter of--sometimes a minute. The first company to find the heir won the loot usually. My ability to access info in any degree is unlimited. But, when I write a resume--no one seems to be sure of what I did--no matter what I write. Any suggestions

Posted by: Jim Creevy | Jun 19, 2008 4:22:43 AM

With many years of employment experience, including over 20 years in the military, my resume does not exceed two pages. The key is to highlight the experiences and accomplishments the employer is looking for in the job posting. At the interview let the prospective employer know what else you can bring to the job but have your resume make it easy for them to see you are a qualified candidate.

Posted by: PatrickM | Jun 19, 2008 9:16:30 AM

I come to work everyday just sit in a cubicle and click away on a computer keyboard, and answer phone calls. We dress casual so I dont see why we cant just sit at home and take calls . With no raises here and the price of cost of living (gas,PG&E and food going up its no longer cost effective to make 8.75 an hour and drive for 12 miles to work everyday. But I can't seem to get an interview even though I apply to at least 10 jobs everyday. I just dont know what im going to do in these hard times.

Posted by: Ben P | Jul 2, 2008 3:34:21 PM

I have been a stay at home mom for several years and I am now wanting to return to work. I am having alot of difficulty in composing a resume. I have been a very active volunteer in my community and my children's schools. Shouldn't that account for something? I can't even get an interview. I was a loyal employee prior to parenthood. What kind of things should I put on my resume? Even though I haven't been paid for my services, I have organized over 75 volunteers and raised thousands of dollars. What to do? I would love some suggestions.

Posted by: Natalie | Jul 2, 2008 5:12:48 PM

There is no doubt today's market is different than it was even 6 months ago. However - there are many companies who look for talented individuals in a 'down' time, and begin ramping up for the inevitable 'good' times.

I always recommend doing whatever you can to stand out from the crowd.

1. Know your market.


2. Know yourself.

In other words - work on your self - self improvement - constantly and make sure you have aligned yourself, your wants and needs with the work you seek.

And make sure you do your homework before you send out masses of resumes. Know the workplace inside and out.

Then make sure you have the tools to get the job you want...

Try our free report - I think it will help...
Free Job Interview Guide

Posted by: Miami Phillips | Aug 10, 2008 3:46:04 PM

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