I have heard it more than once from job seekers that they do not understand why someone else with comparable experience got a job that they wanted.
They had the same type of jobs, same type of responsibilities and yet the other person was snatched up and they are still looking for their next job.
Why? If on paper they are the same why is it that they were not selected?
This is where I can use quotes to help illustrate a point, and here is one of my favorite:
“Two men looked out from prison bars; one saw the mud, the other saw stars.” Dale Carnegie
It is not necessarily the experience, rather how you present it.
To you previous positions could have just been a job. But to the candidate selected their either learned something from it or were able to contribute value.
Remember two important factors in job searching:
Employers want to know what you can do for them.
Past success is an indicator of future success.
If you are portraying your past positions as space on your resume you are not proving giving prospective employers the one thing they are looking for: proof.
Proof of success and proof that you can bring immediate value to them.
The first thing you need to do is change your thinking about your present and past. Stop looking at them as a waste of your time or ability and look at them as opportunities to prove yourself. Ask yourself:
What did I learn?
How did I contribute?
How did I grow?
Who did I serve?
How did I serve them?
How was I able to do my job better/different than my peers?
What did I do that will help me in my next position?
Once you start finding the value then write your history toward your future. Use those key items that are important for that next position when describing your past responsibilities. For example, if in the next position that you are targeting it is important to have good communication skills find examples that demonstrate you utilized your skills in the past.
Tell the story potential employers are looking for and you will be the one that grabs their attention.
Lisa K. McDonald, CPRW