Okay, so I’ve said this before, but I believe it is worth repeating. Since there are increasingly more résumé writers / career coaches to choose from these days, I believe it is increasingly essential for those of you who are shopping the market to get the information you need to make informed decisions. It’s not rocket science that I am going to provide to you in today’s blog. It is, rather, common sense.
1. Never hire a résumé writer / career coach who relies solely on providing forms for you to complete. Think about it. If the résumé writer / career coach doesn’t take the time to get to know you personally, of what value is that résumé writer / career coach? Résumé writers / career coaches are supposed to work for you, not visa versa.
2. A résumé writer / career coach must be a resource to you. This means that the résumé writer / career coach should learn all that he or she can learn from you regarding your workplace experience, qualifications, and goals. In fact, my favorite way to interview clients is face to face, which is in direct alignment with what Frank Fox, the president and founder of the Professional Association of Résumé Writers / Career Coaches (PARW/CC) says. I quote, “It’s really best to hire a local résumé writer,” says Frank. He claims, quite candidly, that online-only résumé writing services are “ripe for scams.”
Although I agree with Mr. Fox that online relationships can be somewhat “iffy,” I am confident that once a relationship is established via a telephone conversation, client interviews via telephone and / or Skype can and do work. I have, in fact, produced many successful résumés, cover letters, and LinkedIn profiles by conducting comprehensive telephone interviews.
3. Ask résumé writers / career coaches about their experience and understanding of your particular industry. Be nosey; ask such questions as:
- What makes you better at writing résumés than your competition?
- How much experience do you have at working with people like me and those in my industry?
- Are there samples of your writing for me to peruse?
- What did you do before becoming a résumé writer / career coach? What motivated you enter this profession?
- When did you enter this profession?
- How do you price your services?
4. Although coming up with a definitive price for writing a résumé, cover letter, and LinkedIn Profile is oftentimes difficult to formulate, you as the consumer, should know the beginning and end ranges of the products you seek. Some résumé writers / career coaches charge by the hour. I, personally, don’t think charging by the hour is a good idea. After all, if I am a talented writer (as I claim to be), I should be able to write your documents faster than someone who is less talented. Makes sense, right?
Likewise, I strongly believe that a critique of your existing résumé (if you have one) should be free. And, if I were you, I would not believe those résumé critique scam artists (and they are out there, believe me) who send you emails saying your documents are “blasé” or “vanilla.” I always tell my clients the truth. If the résumé has merit, I say so. If it is downright bad, I say that too. Truth and trust are very important to me.
5. Don’t be alarmed that up-front payment is required. A good résumé writer / career coach spends a few hours getting to know his or her client. It then takes countless hours for a résumé writer / career coach to craft a truly unique résumé, cover letter, and LinkedIn Profile. This, in itself, is an excellent reason to avoid next-day delivery services when it comes to résumés, cover letters, and LinkedIn Profiles. Believe me, if you think writing a one-of-a-kind résumé, cover letter, and LinkedIn Profile is easy, let me be the first to tell you, it is not!
The final point of this blog brings me to the following segue: The office will be closed for a few days — September 18th to the 23rd — because, well, I need a vacation. Over the past several months, I have worked very hard to please my clients. I must say, I have been successful in doing so. Now, however, it is time to recharge, spend some time away from my laptop, and kick back. Until we “meet” again . . . be well!