Sunday, 5 May 2019

Why we should keep our Resume updated, always.

  Posted at  May 05, 2019 2 comments


If you are currently job hunting or even at a stable job, you should think about keeping your Resume/CV ALWAYS updated. This can come in the form of resumes updated on job portals and even our LinkedIn profiles.

tl;dr
1) We are always prepared if things go south. not wait until the end of the road
2) We have a chance to be headhunted, even while we are not actively looking
3) It helps us in our preparations emotionally and also for doing homework preparations for interviews

As with my last post, my situation at being retrenched set off a scenario I never imagined would have happened to me and it got me thinking about how complacent I got to be after working for about 5 years.

As with every difficult situation, sometimes we enter a state of denial first before we come to terms with the reality and really buck up.

I'm quite thankful that in the past month, since I've updated my professional profile and sent out resumes:


  • I received 4 interview offers (3 2 actually came from headhunters/recruiters on LinkedIn)
  • I have since attended 3 interviews. (I sort of screwed up the first interview since its been a long time since I have last prepared for one)
  • The return rate from job portals has been rather poor so far (just 1) compared to 1.5 years ago when I landed my current job. I believe online portals have more applicants so it takes time. I do tailor make my resumes to fit the relevant skills set the employers are looking for.


Through this last month, it also has been a wake-up call to be more vigilant, to be ever ready to "give a defence for yourself". As it turns out there are many aspects to ace-ing an interview. It goes all the way down from emotional preparation to doing your homework on the various questions we might be asked.

The need to constantly update our professional profiles

When the retrenchment hit my department, there was a senior marketing manager who visited us  thereafter (He is in his early 40s) who by his standards is quite a high flyer. He mentioned something that stuck with me: "Oh, I am always ready for an interview. My resume is always updated."

True enough, regularly updating our LinkedIn profiles might not seem like a very important thing. Especially when we already have a stable job.

But, regularly updating of our resumes does 2 things:

  • It helps us to crystallise our professional journey and document where we are in our careers and internalise what we have done thus far
  • It puts us "out there" in the market to help us "look out" for opportunities


Sometimes, having a good career/job boils down to really luck: Meeting the right people at the right time and at the right place. We never know who would pop by to our profiles to take a look and say to themselves: Hey I think this guy could do a job for me/ is just the person we been looking for.

It also helps us to be prepared for the unforeseen circumstances given the tough job climate these days. Having an "insurance" plan in place surely helps. And if we are new hires/headhunted to a new firm, my guess is that our chances of being made redundant is minimised in a way.

Constantly updating our professional profiles gives us chance and opportunities, even when we are not looking.

The Emotional Side

If we have not attended an interview for a long time, usually our first interview in a while tends to screw up a bit. Why is this?

It turns out that FEAR of the unknown and desperation can cause us to under-perform. People generally fear what they don't know and being thrown into a situation like this is nothing short of traumatic.

The denial phase would set in first and we might be blaming every other thing/person for things not going our way. Nothing just seem to go right at the moment.

However, once we are able to calm down and attend a few more interviews, we become more sure of who we are and takes things better in stride.

I myself screwed up my first interview because I gave myself too much stress thinking that I had to land that job or I would be in trouble. Needless to say, things didn't go well because we appear a little too desperate and it was inevitable that I said the wrong things.

When we feel unprepared as well, we tend to appear less confident as well. Partially why constantly updating our profiles on a regular basis helps is because it helps us to crystallise and internalise what we have learnt on our current roles, instead of the last minute cramping and memorisations of scripts. This would not be natural.

If you have a faith/belief in a religion, meditation or studying wise wisdom from sages or faith giants might help us in our journies of self-discovery and give us some inspiration too.

Ultimately, master the mind or it will master us.

The Preparations (homework) Side

I start to find that once we internalise the knowledge about what we do at our current work, it would be easy to describe what we do.

The main bulk of interviews challenges therefore comes down to researching about the company (to show we are interested and make an effort to find out about them) and also Situational/ Scenario based questions.

I find that the advice from this website was very helpful indeed.
https://zety.com/blog/job-interview-questions-and-answers
https://zety.com/blog/situational-interview-questions

Q: Tell me about yourself.
Q: Why are you applying for this position?
Q: What motivates you?
Q: Why are you the best person for this job?
Q: What are your strengths (and greatest weaknesses)?
Q: Why did you leave your last job?
Q: Tell me about a mistake you made
Q: Tell me about a time you went above and beyond for work.
Q: Describe a situation where you weren’t satisfied with your job. What could have made it better?
Q: Tell me about a time you reached a big goal at work. How did you reach it?
Q: Describe a situation where you saw a problem and took steps to fix it.
Q: Tell me about a time you had to collaborate with a coworker who was tough to please.
Q: Tell me about a long-running project you handled. How did you manage your time to meet your deadlines?

When we are asked questions such as these, how do we answer? What is the context we should be framing our answers so that we do not go out of the context of what they want to know? We need to flip that table around and imagine we are the interviewers. What do they want to hear? What are the telltale signs in their job descriptions? It also takes effort to try to LinkedIn search who your potential interviewers might be. Who are they and what roles do they play? Do remember their names by hard.

My take is that mostly we have the answers to these questions, but if we do not take time to consider how we are going to answer them, it will show as a lack of confidence, lack of thoughtfulness in answers, or our stories may lack coherence and detail.

There are two chinese sayings which I like to fall back on:

1) 养兵千日,用兵一时: Feed a thousand soldiers, all for one fight. (Describes how storing/accumulating resources to fight a war in normal times is crucial for a war)

2)台上一分钟,台下十年功: A performer performs a minute on the stage, but it took him 10 years of practice. (Describes the crucial preparation and hardwork behind the success of a single performance.)

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If you are in the middle of a job search, all the best. And also, if you are not looking out for anything, now is probably a good time to start.

Update 6th May 8pm: Just received a call from my Headhunter saying I did well for the interview. They are considering me for an alternative position even though I'm a bit lacking in the position I applied for. If it is an upgrade in terms of pay and career progression/security, I will take it up.


Until Next Time, 

K.C.
If you like this post, you might like our facebook page as well. I'm also on Investing Note.


Disclaimer: The views expressed, opinion and information in this article are strictly for informational purposes to encourage educational discussions only. It is important to conduct your own analysis before making any investment decisions based on your own personal circumstances. You should take reasonable measures such as seeking independent financial advice from professionals and/or independently research and verify the information that you find on "30 Year Old Investor" before undertaking any important investment decisions. No content on this site constitutes - or should be understood as constituting - a recommendation to enter any securities transactions or to engage in any of the investment strategies presented in our site content. We do not provide personalised recommendations or views as to whether a particular stock or investment approach is suitable to the financial needs of a specific individual. No representation or warranty expressed or implied is made as to, and no reliance shall be placed on, the fairness, accuracy, completeness or correctness of the information or opinions contained on this website. "30 Year Old Investor" shall not be liable whatsoever for loss or damages of any kind arising from the result of any use, reliance or distribution of the articles or its contents from information contained on this website. 

2 comments:

  1. Good advice here. All the best in your job search!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi SS!

      Thanks! I believe it is now only a matter of time before I do land another job.

      This one month has been nothing short of learning points and I feel I'm much more equipped both emotionally and rationally.

      KC

      Delete

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You don't need to pay anyone/company to have a plan of your own and work towards achieving Financial Independence. Only we alone have no conflict of interest with our own money. "30 Year Old Investor" is a personal blog about a Singaporean's savings and investing journey.


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Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The views expressed, opinion and information in this article are strictly for informational purposes to encourage educational discussions only. It is important to conduct your own analysis before making any investment decisions based on your own personal circumstances. You should take reasonable measures such as seeking independent financial advice from professionals and/or independently research and verify the information that you find on "30 Year Old Investor" before undertaking any important investment decisions.

No content on this site constitutes - or should be understood as constituting - a recommendation to enter any securities transactions or to engage in any of the investment strategies presented in our site content. We do not provide personalised recommendations or views as to whether a particular stock or investment approach is suitable to the financial needs of a specific individual. No representation or warranty expressed or implied is made as to, and no reliance shall be placed on, the fairness, accuracy, completeness or correctness of the information or opinions contained on this website.

"30 Year Old Investor" shall not be liable whatsoever for loss or damages of any kind arising from the result of any use, reliance or distribution of the articles or its contents from information contained on this website.


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