How to Get Your Resume Rejected Immediately

trash-can-fullThere are all sorts of blogs, articles, tips and tricks that you can read that tell you what you should do with your resume to get noticed.  I know, I have written and read many of them.

Even with all the wealth of information available, these suggestions are often not headed.

Perhaps a different communication approach is in order.

So today, I will address what to do if you do not want your resume noticed, at least not in a positive way.  These tips are for general resume guidelines.  Of course, there are specific areas that these would not apply.  (A picture, for example, may be perfectly acceptable if you are an actor)

Use bright or “pretty” paper.  Nothing screams immature, under-qualified and possibly a baby-sitter is needed like hot pink paper with purple flowers on it.

Forget the computer – write out your resume with good old pen and paper!  Set that tone immediately that you are completely outdated in the technology driven world and even though resources are available you go against the grain and choose to ignore them.

Do not list your contact information prominently on the top of the first page.  Heck, don’t list it at all.  If they really want you they will hunt you down!

Use a completely unprofessional email address.  Because everyone knows “Sexymomma65”, “BoyzBMine”, “Player”, “HoesBTrippin” or “DownTo…” (you get the idea) automatically equates to professional, career and customer-minded individuals.

Do not tell them the position for which you are applying.  Again, let them work for it!  Of course they have the time to read your entire resume to figure out just where you fit in their organization.

Do not list your qualifications – paint a really broad picture.  Stating that you have a CEO-mindset should tell them everything they need to know in how you are qualified to do this job.  Never mind the fact that your current career path is as a customer service agent, you think like an executive and can “talk” like an executive so of course they will let you run the company!

Copy and paste your job description.  That certainly explains everything you were hired to do.  Forget the fact that it does not tell them how you perform the job, the value you bring or any of your accomplishments.  If it was enough for the job you last applied for, than it should be good enough for them.

Use “I” and “me” in your resume.  Go against the grain again and forget the rule that the resume is about you so it is implied in your sentences.  Make yourself sound like that obnoxious guy at a party who talks about himself in third person – they really love that!

Tell them why you are no longer at an employee.  Why give yourself the opportunity to explain it in person and put a positive spin on it – just give it to them in the beginning to they can have a negative aspect to hold on to.  While you are at it, just go ahead and pick and choose which jobs you want to explain and which you do not.  They will never know that the ones you do not explain are the ones you got fired from – shhhh!

List out every single job you every held, starting in high school (even though you are in your 40s).  When I was 16 and worked at Dairy Queen I learned all I needed to know about customer service, and the fact that I can still do the curly-q with soft serve ice-cream is a bonus!

Have a five page resume.  Now this will really stand out!  Having so much to say why not give them a mini-novella for them to take home, curl up with a beverage and read it all night long at their leisure.

Bombard it with key words, with no connection to value.  If they are looking for a project manager then by golly, you need to put that in every opportunity you can!  Content doesn’t matter as long as you hit the resume scanner programs it like a slot machine – Bing! Bing! Bing! Cherries everywhere!

Be super vague.  When you describe a previous position, do not concentrate on the fact that you learned nothing from it and contributed equally as much.  Heck no, use very vauge, overall statements to sound super smart and leave them wondering just what the heck you did.

Apply for a job that you have not skills for what so ever.  Been a bank teller for 10 years and now want to run the construction company? No problem!  The fact that you don’t know the industry, have no transferable skills like contract negotiations, analyzing a P&L statement, managing people, running equipment, penetrating client rich target markets – no worries.  You can pick it up along the way.

Seem disinterested.  This is the playing hard to get of the corporate world.  In your cover letter, tell them that you are just looking for a job that will pay your bills – that should intrigue them.

Be overanxious.  It is the opposite of the above, this time, try telling them that you can do any job better than anyone else, all you need is a chance and you really, really, really want this job.  They will eat this one up!  Who needs transferable skills and accomplishments?  You have unbridled enthusiasm!

Do not use spell or grammar check.  Who has time for that anyway?  You are a busy person applying to 100 different jobs, you can’t possibly take the time to get it right for each and every one!  Besides, they know what you meant to say so that is good enough.

Put a picture on your resume.  You are right cupcake, those dimples will be the deciding factor.

Maybe, just maybe, I was a little over the top on the comments.  But here is the thing: I have seen every single one of these immediately-in-the-trash tricks before.  Trust me, they work.


Lisa K. McDonald, CPRW

Brand Strategist & Career Coach

Certified Professional Resume Writer

When You Get Rejected, and You Will…

rockefeller and vanderbiltYes, you are going to get rejected.  You will get your hopes up, you will get attached and you will get hurt.


No, I don’t have a bad case of the Mondays – I am doing the best service that I can for my clients, readers and anyone out there that has stumbled across this – I am being honest.


It is going to suck and it is going to happen.


So, knowing this fact what are you going to do about it?


You could hop on the delusional train and be transported to two separate destinations:

  1. I’m going to get hurt so I’m not going to try. –or-
  2. I’ve completely convinced myself that I can’t get hurt so I’m going all in.


It isn’t a pleasant train ride.  Don’t even buy the ticket.


When you are job searching, just like in dating or relationships, you have to put yourself out there to get what you need.  That is scary.


What prevents some people from reaching happiness is stopping themselves from putting it out there because they don’t want to get hurt again.


It is going to happen, but guess what, you will survive.


If heartache actually killed people the world would barely be inhabited.


We have all had our hearts broken, dreams shattered and hopes dashed.  But you have to keep going.


Sure you could settle for something less and protect yourself; but you will not find happiness and self-worth in that.  It is called settling and it is just a long, slow torture of hurt.


So how do you get over the fear?  Face it and face yourself.


No one wants to get emotionally hurt and the only way to stop it is by cutting yourself off completely.  Risk of hurt vs. absolutely no connection.  That is a pretty easy call for me.


Here are some things to help summons the courage to face the fear and move forward:


  1. Be realistic: stop being dramatic – you aren’t going to die.
  2. It is them: stop taking it personally.  They didn’t hire you, it was a business decision.
  3. Man up: take accountability for your own actions.  Did you seem engaged or even act like you wanted the job?
  4. Take stock: do you really have what they need?  Again, it is business and the best fit is the most value for the money.  You are the value in this situation – are you offering the most for that organization?  Maybe a little more experience or training is needed.
  5. Invest in yourself: not just a business class or that experience – but      emotionally.  You are your biggest supporter or biggest adversary – it is all in how you talk to yourself.
  6. Align yourself: make sure your thinking and your actions support each      other.  Don’t tell yourself every day that you are the best and are going to get that job but your actions pin you in like a recluse.
  7. Know your limits: what are you willing to go through to get to where you want to go?  If there are hurdles, promotions or designations to earn, a learning process – are you willing to do it?
  8. Respect yourself: if you need to walk away do so on your terms.  If it is a constant fight to get to that next place is it about the fight or about the victory?
  9. Respect others: do not use others as a crutch because you are not ready.  Stop asking for referrals and meetings when you don’t follow through on other actions to make it happen.  You end up hurting them by making them feel used.  Stop it.
  10.  Be fearless: the best way to fight a fear is to open yourself up and say “I’m not afraid – I am excited!”  Change the way you view it and it will change the way it is presented to you.


I was watching an amazing show this weekend about the men who built America.  One snippet was about how Rockefeller was a struggling small business owner facing failure and was called to a meeting with Vanderbilt.  He was in awe, this was a man that he wanted to model himself after.  He viewed Vanderbilt as a man on mount high and himself as almost unworthy to meet with him. He was scheduled to leave by train for the meeting.


He missed his train.  The seat he had on the original train was the car that exploded in the train crash and there were no survivors.


That way too close call changed his whole perspective.  He got back in alignment with himself and knew he was a man of value.  He scheduled another meeting and went with a whole new attitude – as an equal.


He made the terms of the agreement and that was the beginning of a significant and masterful journey of business domination.  Oh yeah, and in setting the terms he over-promised but he knew if he could go in and control the meeting he could meet the demands.  And he did.


Be a newly found Rockefeller – you are on equal terms with what you want and you are deserving of it.  Do not be afraid of it, face it head on, look it in the eyes and meet it with an openness rather than a defense.


You may get rejected a time or two (or even 1,000 as Einstein) but you will get a yes.  That is what matters and that is where it can all begin!



Lisa K. McDonald, CPRW

Career Coach-Strategist

Certified Professional Resume Writer

Career Polish, Inc.


When a Bad Job Searching Strategy Fails: Getting Rejected By The One You Didn’t Want

Rejection stinks – no matter on what level, for what purpose – it just plain stinks.  What is even worse is to be rejected by someone or something that you didn’t really want in the first place.


That’s when we can turn really nasty or really weepy.


How dare they, the rat-bastards, I didn’t even want the job in the first place and they have the nerve to reject me?  Seriously?  What is wrong with them?!  Oh they will pay, I was the best candidate ever – just who do they think they are?




Even the one I didn’t want rejected me, I’m such a failure; no one will ever want me.  It is hopeless with the crap job that I hated wouldn’t even hire me.  What is the point, why even try – I’ll never land my fairy-tale-happy job let alone a job period.


Sound familiar?


It can really put your job searching in a tailspin.  Rejection brings with it negative emotions and as if there is not enough you are battling with during the job search a rejection from something you really did not want in the first place can sometime just push you over the edge.


I hate to tell you but this is at least partially your fault.  You did this to yourself cupcake.


If you didn’t want the job in the first place then why the heck did you go through the motions?  Are you telling yourself it is part of a strategy to keep busy while you search for the right job or to keep your interviewing and/or networking skills sharp?  Another way to say all these things is to make yourself feel better, to feel wanted, to stroke your ego.  Understandable, but stupid as it leads to no good.


It is like being dumped by a girl you really liked (job loss) and quickly find another girl that is just ok (job you don’t want but are interviewing for).  You really are not into the new girl but either you don’t want to be alone, don’t want to face all those icky things called feelings or just need an ego boost.  No matter how you slice it your intentions are just wrong.


You’re plan can backfire if you try to use the “just ok” girl/job to stoke your ego and she rejects you.  She is able to see from the beginning you are all dark and gloomy and doesn’t even want to go there.  Now you feel even worse because you were never interested in the first place and now you were rejected not only by the one you really wanted but now by someone who normally wouldn’t even cross your radar.


An interviewer can pick up on the ego stroking syndrome pretty quickly.  If you do not want the job then you will broadcast that message through your actions and body language, as well as your written and spoken words.  No one likes to be used – it is right up there with rejection.


Again, you did this to yourself.  It is also called Karma.


I can understand if you were using the experience purely for practice.  If you wanted to brush up on your interviewing skills then I get it; however if that was the goal in the first place then you should have been able to maintain that mindset and bowed out before it went too far.


If your mindset changed you need to ask yourself why.  If you became interested in the job then the “really didn’t want it” doesn’t apply any more.  But if you fake wanted it because you are getting desperate then your priorities are a little out of whack.  It happens, recognize it and realign.


There are better options rather than using people and companies to practice and boost your ego.  Request informational interviews to find out more about a company, position or industry.  This is good practice in interviewing and it gives you valuable information gained in a productive way for you to move forward.


Hire a coach or enlist a friend.  Perform research on interview questions and how to perform well during an interview.  Research companies, positions and industries.  Find out what is going on in the industry, what is important to the position and what a company has performed in the past, how they are doing now and their future plans.


Make actionable plans and take steps to lick your wounds and move forward.  Being courted by a company that you are not interested in may temporarily stroke your ego and make you feel empowered again, but the high will not last.  The rejection can be even worse when your heart was not in it because you quite easily can make it personal.


Job searching is a job in itself and business is business.  It is important to stay true to yourself, your goals and what will make you happy.  Continue to pursue leads in an ethical manner as no one wants to hire someone merely looking to stroke their own ego.



Lisa K. McDonald, CPRW

Career Coach-Strategist

Certified Professional Resume Writer

Career Polish, Inc.

Rejections Can Be Your Biggest Ally

There is always a huge element of uncertainty in job searching from responding to an opportunity to waiting to hear after an interview.  The wait can be unbearable, we start to make assumptions, replay every scenario, wonder if we should have said this or that, done something different, waiting, wondering – it is an exercise in crazy.  Then you get the rejection.




You had built yourself up in such a tizzy that you had put all your hopes on this one opportunity even to the point of looking beyond the obvious downsides of the job just to be accepted.  We all want to be accepted, feel wanted and be picked for the team.  So when we are rejected we take it personally.


It can lead to a vicious cycle of self-doubt which can really speed up the train to crazy town.  We start to doubt ourselves, our value, what we have to give, our self-worth and possibly if anyone will ever want us.  Will we ever find the right job?  At some point you might be willing to accept any job even if it is completely wrong for you just to have the feeling of acceptance.


That’s called settling and you deserve better.  Knock it off.


Yes, rejection sucks and it happens to everyone.  At some point at any level within personal or professional lives we have all been rejected.  And I do not know one person who likes it, not one.  Not even the masochists.  So it happens, but what you do with it is what is important.


Rejection is a blindfold that someone else puts on you but you must choose to take off yourself.


When someone rejects you they essentially limit you from seeing the entire landscape, like a blindfold.  What’s worse is after they put this blindfold on they then set you squarely in front of a fork in the road, but you are unaware of it because you’ve been blindfolded b the rejection.


You have a choice, but to make that choice you have to let go of the rejection.  You can’t possibly move forward without being able to see because you will run smack into the pole right in front of you which is holding the sign with big fat letters that says “FORK IN ROAD”.  Ouch.


So the first step is to take off that blindfold and realize you actually do have a choice, you are not stuck down a dead end.


The first option is to continue down the path of holding on to what has rejected you.  You can see for miles down this road and if you replaced the blindfold with rose colored glasses you see how maybe this might work, they may call you back, you could really pursue it and convince them to hire you even though it isn’t the right job.  Those rose colored glasses make the desire for acceptance cloud better judgment.  You are lessoning yourself to adapt to something beneath you.  Remember, you deserve better.  Take off the damn glasses.


When you do the landscape changes.  You can still see for miles down that road but you see it for what it is and the thought hits – what the hell was I thinking?


They wanted me to work 70 hours a week, less pay that industry average, no chance of advancement, and in all honesty they really weren’t nice people.  Who wants to work with not nice people?  Not me.


When you look down option two you can’t see anything, there is a huge cloud obstructing the view so moving forward you just don’t know what you are getting yourself into.


But behind the cloud is the sunshine.


Opportunities lie in rejection.  It allows you to open yourself up to the unknown and take chances.  Sure, you might get rejected again, but you’ve been there, done that so you know you can choose the other road again.


When I look back at some of the most significant events in my life or best things that happened I found that many were the result of rejection.  Had I gotten what I really wanted at the time I would have completely missed out on something better for me at the time.


I’ve been rejected for sucky jobs which left me open to take something else which turned out to be just what I needed at the time.  I’ve been rejected by difficult prospective clients which left me available to take on other opportunities which proved to be more beneficial for me.  I’ve been rejected by insecure and manipulative men which left me free to meet someone secure, willing and able to walk on the same path.


When I choose to accept rejection as a singular action of which I have no control and decide to view it as a reason that I am not meant to know then it turns into a blessing.  Had I gotten everything that I always thought I wanted at the time I would be a much different person – and probably very miserable.


Man plans God laughs.


I had to learn to stop being selfish.  Wanting something so badly just for the feeling of acceptance clouded my judgment and ability to truly see the opportunity for what it was, not what I wanted it to be.


I deserved better.  Those jobs truly were sucky and I would have hated them.  Those clients would have sucked the life out of me and there is no amount of money that can make that right.


It was hard to be rejected and it hurt, a lot.  But once I stopped licking my wounds I could look up and move forward.  Sometimes the next step wasn’t out of bravery it was out of exhaustion.  Just going for something just because, heck why not, I’ve already been rejected.  But the point is I moved forward and it was a good thing.


So if the happy has been sucked out because you were recently rejected for something you really wanted then I’m hear to tell you – hooray!  That means that something better is coming just for you.


Stop worrying about why that stupid company didn’t want you, it wasn’t meant to be let it go.  If you do have to take a job just to pay the bills, that’s fine, just don’t give up on yourself.  Remember, you deserve better.


Even if you do not know what better is – you still deserve better.  Another thing rejection teaches us is what we want is sometimes not what is best for us.  Think of it this way – we may want to eat that whole death by chocolate cake all in one sitting just to drown our sorrows but really, is the diabetic coma the best thing for us?  I think not.


You have choices, to accept things or reject them; to learn from them or beat your head against a wall.  It is up to you.  When you decide to remove the blindfold of rejection you will discover that you have opportunities either right in front of you or just around the corner that you never would have seen had you gotten what you thought you wanted.


When you do stumble upon the right thing, trust me the rejection and pain will all be worth it in the end.  Just give yourself the opportunity to stumble.



Lisa K. McDonald, CPRW

Career Coach-Strategist

Certified Professional Resume Writer

Career Polish, Inc.