We have found that few books on resumes and cover letters provide good advice on job seeking. In fact, most of these books give bad advice. For example, they often tell you to send out lots of resumes and get them onto employers' desks or into e-mail boxes or resume-scanning systems. Then, if your resume or cover letter is good enough, employers will ask you in for an interview.
This advice is old-fashioned and downright harmful. It puts you at the mercy of some employer whose mindset is to screen people out. It encourages you to be passive and wait for employers to call you. And, worst of all, it assumes that the job search is limited to talking to employers who have job openings now and excludes all those who do not—but who might soon.
Note: If you are planning your career or need to know more about finding a job, we strongly encourage you to learn more. Another book by one of the authors, Michael Farr, titled The Very Quick Job Search, covers the techniques in this section in much greater depth and provides other information as well. It is published by JIST and is available through most bookstores and libraries.
So we think the traditional advice on resumes and job seeking is (to put it kindly) not good. You can use techniques that are far more effective than the traditional ones. Over many years, we have found that the best job search techniques are based on common sense. They encourage you to be clear about what you want and then to go out and actively look for it. It takes some nerve, but people who use the techniques presented in this chapter have proven that they do work. The techniques will help you find better jobs in less time. And that is what a job search should be all about, isn't it?
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