Land Your Next Executive Job In As Little as 4 Weeks


As previously published in Forbes Magazine

These days, many executives find that a job search is not only difficult to conduct but a lengthy, time-involved process. As time draws on, they may even find themselves in an unproductive, stagnant job search. Or, perhaps they are landing interviews, but for some reason, not sealing the deal with a job offer.

Being caught in a stalled job search is not only discouraging, disheartening and difficult — it's costly too. For every multiple of $100,000 in salary, being unemployed for a month can cost a person $8,000 in salary. But it doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, I’ve been able to help 10 out of the last 14 executives I’ve worked with land a job within four weeks — and that includes those with a previously stagnant search that had been dragging on for over six months.

The number one way to accelerate an executive job search is to define and articulate your brand, then communicate it on your resume, LinkedIn profile and during the interview.

First, Define Your Brand

What do you think of when you hear the word “brand?" Chances are you’ll think of the Nike “swoosh” or the golden arches of McDonald’s. But, did you ever stop to consider that you are a brand as well? A brand is defined as a “product, service, or concept that is distinguished from others so it can be easily communicated or marketed.”

In other words, you are a product. You need to distinguish yourself from others and define your “unique selling proposition," so you can easily communicate and market your strengths. Defining your brand allows you to sell yourself to others.

As you think through your brand, you’ll want to answer questions similar to these:

• What adjectives describe me?

• Why have others hired me for previous jobs?

• What benefits do I bring to an employer?

• What do I do better than anyone else?

• What accolades have I received?

• What impression do I make on people when they first meet me?

• What challenges have I solved for employers?

Take some time to think about and journal these questions, going into great detail about your strengths, accomplishments, and personality. Then, use this information to determine what it is you do better than others, how you do it, and why someone should hire you. This is known as your “USP” or your unique selling proposition: what will sell you to prospective employers.

Many find that they are unable to articulate their brand by themselves. Some find that they are too humble, and others say they were taught not to toot their own horn and thinking highly of themselves doesn’t come naturally. If need be, a professional career coach or resume writer can help.

Next, Articulate Your Brand On Your Resume

Once you define your brand, you’ll want it to permeate your resume. A boring resume reads like a history of what you’ve done, whereas a branded resume is a sales and marketing document that sells you for your ideal position.

A branded resume, written correctly, should be sufficiently captivating to the point where recruiters and hiring managers want to pick up the phone and call you in for an interview.

The top summary section should nail your brand and communicate why you’re the ideal candidate for the position. For each job description on the resume, the challenge you were brought in to solve should be described, and the accomplishments or “bullets” for each position will share the accomplishments you achieved in that position.

Then, Weave Your Brand Into Your LinkedIn Profile

If your LinkedIn profile is properly optimized, it will draw recruiters and hiring managers to your profile page, especially if you achieve “all-star” status, have the proper headline, and make proper use of keywords.

Once you draw in recruiters and hiring managers to your page, being able to share your brand is what will captivate them and entice them to reach out to you. The best place to share your brand on your LinkedIn profile is in the summary section. Lead with a one-sentence summary statement for your brand, then share more about what makes you unique and why the recruiter or hiring manager must reach out to you.

Lastly, Communicate Your Brand During The Interview

If you properly share your brand in your LinkedIn profile and resume, you should articulate it throughout the interview. You can even write and memorize responses to common interview questions such as the following:

• Tell me about yourself.

• Why are you the best person for the job?

• What are your major accomplishments?

• Why should we hire you?

I’ve found that becoming clear about your brand will help to accelerate even stagnant job searches. Identify your strengths and your unique selling proposition, communicate through your resume and LinkedIn, and you’ll find you’re suddenly landing job interviews — and ultimately, job offers.

Need help accelerating your Executive Job Search? You're not alone - most find it difficult to articulate their brand. An outside expert can help.

Rebecca Bosl is a Career Strategist and Executive Resume Writer at - Stunning, top-tier Executive resumes that land job offers in as little as 4 weeks!

#resume #jobsearch #jobseeker #LinkedIn #personalbranding

It’s a Secret – the #1 Way to Create a Resume that Gets Immediate Results

As a former Market Research / Competitive Intelligence professional now turned Resume Writer and Career Coach, I’m wired to look at products, companies and now people with the ability to pinpoint their unique strengths and selling points – or what is known as their “unique selling proposition” (USP) – and communicate this to employers.

A resume that is written as a history of what you’ve done, that has no eye-catching formatting, and that doesn’t capture your “unique selling proposition” quite frankly is not going to get you noticed or land you an interview.   For a resume to get results, it needs to do the following:

§  Capture your unique selling proposition (USP)

Remember, your USP is what makes you unique and different and what will sell you to employers.  To articulate your USP, you need to answer the question “Why should I hired you?”

I recently started working with a lady I will name Paula.  We met a networking event and she said she was told her resume was perfect.  I asked if I could have a look.  What I noticed about Paula is that she had a dynamic, engaging – almost electric – personality.  Her personality was not captured on her resume, which explained why it was not useful in landing her interviews.

I gave Paula’s resume and LinkedIn profile a makeover.  Within 48 hours, she started getting calls from recruiters for interviews.  The new resume and LinkedIn profile captured her dynamic personality in written form – captured her “amazingness” – and therefore everyone wanted Paula on their team.

I’ve heard similar stories from other clients – capturing your USP really works.  The only downside is that it is very difficult to do this on your own.  An outside person who is very good at articulating your “amazingness” will truly help.

§  Case Study – Tim, VP of Sales

I recently worked with a client named Tim.  Tim and I met at a networking event.  He had been looking for work for 6 months with only a few interviews to show for it.  I’ll let Tim share his story in his own words:

I was laid off from my job in November 2015.  I had never really looked for a job before so I wasn’t sure what to do.  I had one interview early on with a recruiting company and was then told the firm did not have a budget for the position.  Over the next 6 months I had an interview here and there.

I attended networking groups and was told to “Network!”  I did not find this very effective as I found it hard to communicate what I did.

At a networking meeting, I met Rebecca Bosl who is a Career Coach / Resume Writer / Job Search Strategist.  That week, we had an initial strategy session over the phone.  We talked about the challenges I faced, and she offered tailored solutions for my needs.  We had a pleasant conversation and I never felt like I was pushed into anything.

While I was clear on the new role I wanted, I had decided to work with her on re-vamping my resume and LinkedIn profile first.  My old resume and LinkedIn profile communicated what I did but did not seem to make me stand out.

After the resume was re-done, I was stunned.  It showcased my strengths and highlighted the unique attributes I could bring as a VP of Sales.  It was also formatted in a way that really seemed to “pop” and grab the attention of the person reading it.  I was beyond pleased, and so was my wife.  My reaction was, “I wish I had known Rebecca when I was first let go.”

I immediately noticed that I was getting many more profile views on LinkedIn.  Every day I started getting calls by recruiters.

I landed a new position as Director of Sales at a company within one week, and was able to start soon after I received the offer.  I am very happy in my new position.  I still get calls daily from recruiters because of my new LinkedIn profile, so I have been able to refer jobs to friends.

Rebecca is able to understand your strengths and articulate them on paper, so that you come across as a strong candidate.  Also, she selects the correct keywords for your LinkedIn profile so that recruiters can find you for relevant positions. 

Even if you have not had any hardly any calls for interviews, she is able to get your job search moving immediately. 

I highly recommend Rebecca for those in transition, and have referred her to others who I know who are between jobs so that they can take advantage of her capabilities.

If Tim’s story reminds you of your job search, part of the problem you may be having is that your resume reads more like a history document than a sales document, and your LinkedIn profile may invisible to recruiters.

If you can identify with Paula’s story in which you think you have a perfect resume / LinkedIn profile but it’s not capturing your amazingness, giving them a makeover might be just the ticket to re-energizing your job search.

Waiting for 6 months going it alone and not getting anywhere can be costly – nearly half a year’s salary can be lost.  Or, you can work with someone to bring out your “amazingness” and get hired much faster.

I’d love to have you as my next success story – I have openings to work with only 3 more people this month.  Contact me for a complimentary strategy session to see if we are a good fit to work together.


Secrets of a 4-week Job Search #1 – Do you have a clear job target?

Today’s topic is the importance of a clear job target in a fast job search.

I’m surprised at how often I see others’ resumes that either have no job target or an unclear job target.  Either the job target is completely missing, or it is extremely vague as in “Business Executive.”

When I follow up and ask them what job they are targeting, they share with me about 10 different possible roles they would be willing to fill.

The problem is that a generic resume is going to be ignored, and will not land them an interview.

When I was on the hiring side, each time I reviewed resumes I had a SPECIFIC job to fill.  Director of Marketing.  Social Media Analyst.  VP of Communications.  For each position, we had hundreds of resumes to review.

How much time did I spend on the resumes that had no clear job target – that either left the job target blank or stated something vague such as “Sales Professional”?  I pushed these aside. 

A hiring manager simply doesn’t have the time to read through and try to figure out what type of position you’re going for. 

On average, a resume is glanced at for 6 seconds the first time, when someone is trying to see if you should be in the “keep” pile or the trash.

Executives - Take our FREE Executive Job Search Quiz and find out how ready you are for a quick search.

The resume should be written with the readers in mind, which includes 3 audiences:

·         The ATS – The Applicant Tracking System – which is the computer which scans resumes looking for keywords and qualifications.

·         The HR Clerk – This person will spend around 6 seconds glancing at your resume.  It needs to have a clear job target and a visually appealing format.

·         The Hiring Manager – This person will first glance at the resume.  Then, they are ready to read the resume, they will first quickly skim it.  Your value has to be able to jump off the page and entice them to pick up the phone and call you for an interview.

The LinkedIn profile title also must have a clear job target outlined.  Recruiters will often search for the job title of the position they are trying to fill, such as “Manager of HR IT Analytics.”  Therefore, list all possible variations of the titles of jobs you’re going for.

If you’re stumped on good job titles, go to or and search open jobs.  Find out what the titles of jobs are for which you’ll be a good fit.  Those titles should be at the top of your resume and in your LinkedIn title.  

You should go for jobs for which your level of experience and skill set are a good match.  If you’re going for 10 different positions, narrow it down to 2 or 3.  Keep your resume and LinkedIn profile targeted to those specific jobs.

It may not make sense, but being focused actually does lead to more opportunities.  We can see this in the business world.  A generic photographer might have a hard time drawing in clients.  However, a photographer for newborns has an easier time drawing in clients, as he or she can be more focused when marketing.

In summary, ensure that you have a very CLEAR job target in mind and write the resume and LinkedIn profile to that specific target.  I’ve seen clients with clear job targets and focused resumes land much faster than those who are not clear about their intentions.

Looking for help in accelerating your job search?  Contact Rebecca today to see if she is a good fit in helping you to reach your goals.

Rebecca Bosl is an Executive Resume Writer and Career Coach located in Cleveland, Ohio with a virtual client base throughout the United States.  Armed with a stunning resume, an optimized LinkedIn profile and the ability to articulate their brand, her Executive clients regularly land offers, often in as little as 4 weeks.

#resume #jobsearch #quickjobsearch

Six Reasons Why You Must Keep Your Resume Up-To-Date

As published in Forbes Magazine:

Should you take the time to keep your resume and LinkedIn profile updated? If you don’t, you’re taking a reactive approach to life. If you do, you’ll be proactively ready to set goals, become an expert and to pursue side consulting gigs and full-time opportunities.

Below are some of the main reasons to keep your personal marketing documents updated:

1. You’ll understand where you’re at — and how far you’ve come.

Have you ever gone to a mall or amusement park and seen a large map with a red “You are here” dot that outlines where you are in relation to the rest of the area? A resume is kind of like that: It shows where you are concerning your surroundings and digs a stake into the ground for the present.

Having a stellar resume and LinkedIn profile will help you to maintain confidence. They can remind you of your brand (your strengths and competitive differentiators), your skills and your achievements. You can track your career progress and see how far you’ve come, which can be encouraging.

2. You’ll understand where you want to go.

Beyond having a clear sense of where you are now, an updated resume can help you determine your strategic plan, outlining where you want to head next and how to get there.

For example, if you’re now a director and want to become a vice president, you’ll be able to pinpoint achievements, skills and maybe degrees you’ll need in order to jump to the next level.

3. You’ll be able to sell yourself.

Are you an expert, or would you like to become known as one? If so, there’s a good chance you’ll be speaking at conferences, writing articles and supplying quotes for the media. You’ll also potentially be nominated for awards as you build your brand as an expert.

When you pitch yourself to be able to do these things — and win awards — you’ll need an updated, branded resume and LinkedIn profile to help you sell yourself. You need to showcase the amazing person you are so that you’re selected for these opportunities.

4. You’ll be ready to pick up side gigs.

Are you looking to make a few extra bucks? Do you want to be prepared if a consulting gig or side work comes your way? Side work can present itself out of the blue or it might be something you actively seek out. You’ll need to provide the employer with a resume that showcases your skill set.

5. You’ll be ready for new opportunities.

Sometimes when you least expect it, a new opportunity is on the horizon. Internally, a promotion might become available for your dream job if the person currently performing the role decides to leave or is asked to leave, if your company is growing and a great new position is created, or if a merger or acquisition opens up potential new jobs. Externally, you might hear about a great new job from a friend or a recruiter.

In each case, you never know when the new situation will spring up. However, it happens much more often than you'd think. In addition, if you dislike your job and want to find a new one, it might be advisable to hunker down and stay put while you search. A recent study found that those with jobs have a better chance of being hired than unemployed job seekers.

6. You’ll be one step ahead if the worst happens.

This really needs no explanation. You might be blindsided by a job loss or you might see the writing on the wall and sense that you might face a job loss in the near future. You might be laid off or let go. During the stressful transition period following, wouldn’t it be great to be prepared with a stellar resume so you’re not scrambling?

Be sure to capture your brand, your strengths and your unique competitive advantage on your updated resume. You have nothing to lose — and everything to gain — by being proactive.


Rebecca Bosl

Rebecca Bosl is an executive resume writer, job search strategist and career coach at



It's a secret - the #1 question to ask during a job interview

So few have heard of this technique that sometimes it seems to be a secret.

As an jobseeker, it is a good idea to be prepared with questions when you walk into an interview. You’ll want to research the company ahead of time and be prepared to ask about the company and its future plans.

Yes, everyone knows this much. But very few seem to know the most important question to ask on an interview.

The #1 question to ask should not be asked on screening interviews with the recruiter or HR person. You should wait to ask this question until you are meeting with the hiring manager for an actual job. And, don’t ask it right off the bat. Take time to ask about the company, the culture, and the position.

Then, and only then, can you ask the all-important question:

Here it is:

·       What do you want the person to accomplish in the first 90 days on the job?

The reason this is the most important question to ask is that it is key to developing follow-up materials that will make you stand out after the interview.What you want to do for follow-up is this:

·       Write out your thank-you notes in the parking lot and hand deliver them into the receptionist, writing a note for each person you interviewed with. (Note – another good question to ask on the interview is “Please describe what would make a person successful in this role” – you can use the answer to this question to highlight similar characteristics in yourself in the thank you note).

·       Go home and write out a “90-day action plan” – use the intelligence you gathered in your interview to fill in what you plan to accomplish on your first 30, 60 and 90 days on the job. Then, immediately put this in the USPS mail.

·       The hiring manager will receive your 90-day action plan at about the same time he or she receives the others’ thank you notes. This will help you to stand out – you’ll look brilliant and miles ahead of everyone else.

I provide a template of a 90-day action plan for my clients, and for some clients I help to write the 90-day action plan. You’ll want to work in some action items based upon what the hiring manager told you in the interview.

In addition, you can add in some of these generic accomplishments for your first 90 days on the job:

30-Day Sample Accomplishments

·        Introduce self to team / managers. Establish myself as a helpful, collaborative team member who is willing to share ideas and chip in as needed.

·        Set up meetings to introduce self to key individuals and my internal clients.

·        On-boarding. Obtain training needed to hit the ground running within a short amount of time.

60-Day Sample Accomplishments

·        Develop a deeper understanding of the current year’s goals (department / company).

·        Meet with key executives and department heads to understand the role and interaction of each. Seek wisdom.

·        Participate in appropriate staff meetings to assist in the understanding of key problem areas; gain a direct understanding of culture and behavior.

·        Establish a weekly conversation with manager, establish strong relationship.

90-Day Sample Accomplishments

·        Continue with bullet points from 30 Day plan, 60 Day plan.

·        Consider how I might use my expertise and training in to expand the group’s capabilities and further the company’s competitive advantage. Respectfully share helpful ideas and insights with manager.

·        Consider other ways that I can help my team members / manager to be successful.

·        Start to manage large scale projects.

Remember, these are generic sample accomplishments – you’ll want to tailor these to the job role, and add in action items the hiring manager mentioned when you asked the question in the interview. The 90-day action plan should be one page and you’ll want to have section headings for 30-Day Plan, 60-Day Plan and 90 Day Plan.

Remember that the resume helps to open up the door to an interview. You’ll need to prepare ahead of time to shine while on the interview. The 90-Day Action Plan is a key component in follow-up; it is designed to set you apart AFTER the interview. To succeed in obtaining an offer, you need to outperform those you’re competing against at the resume stage, at the interview stage and then again during follow-up.

As a Resume Writer, Career Coach and Job Search Strategist, my job is to help you land a job more quickly – by helping you stand out and shine every step of the way. My 6-Step Job Search Program is effective and goes way beyond Career Coaching and Resume Writing.  We teach clients how to launch a targeted job search and conduct research to identify target companies and hiring managers. 

Best of luck to you and let me know if I can help you succeed – FASTER.

Let me know how this tactic works for you on your next job interview with a hiring manager.

The #1 way to move your Job Search into the FAST LANE

Job seekers may be stuck in a slow job search for one or more of the following reasons:

·       They never took time to complete branding exercises and hence cannot articulate their strengths or why someone should hire them;

·       Their resume fails to highlight the candidate’s strengths and why the employer should hire this person over others.

·       They look for one job at a time, meaning if they have an interview, they stop looking for other jobs and “wait and hope” the current job will come through;

·       They have not taken time to outline their approach to interviewing, developing answers that will highlight their strengths and capabilities.

While we can help with items #1 – #4, these steps alone are not enough.

By far the #1 reason job seekers have a hard time accelerating their search is this: they spend too much time applying for jobs, and doing random ineffective networking, and not enough time on a targeted job search – and they may not even know what a targeted job search is!

I tell all of my clients to spend no more than 10% of their time applying for jobs, and 90% of their time conducting a targeted job search.

Even savvy job seekers will often tell me they think they are doing the right thing to accelerate their job search by spending 90% of their time “networking.” This is not the correct way to hasten a job search. While networking is a component of conducting a targeted job search, it is not the same thing.

§ Networking is talking to / corresponding with either people you know, or people in the know – your friends and family, and those you’ve met on the job or in your industry. The people you “network” with are your connections, and sometimes also the people you meet. The people you know may be your hair stylist, a former co-worker, your dog’s groomer, people you know in an association – but most of these people are NOT hiring managers for the jobs you want. Some may know hiring managers and some can introduce you to them – and this is the primary value of networking.

§ A Targeted Job Search means identifying companies where you’d like to work (based on personal interest, companies in desired locations, desired size, etc.), then identifying the hiring manager and making contactin the right way. The hiring manager may or may not be able to meet with you for an informational interview, and you may or may not have personal connections at the company. Either way though, you can forward your information to this person and then be on their radar screen when there is an opening. The reason why targeted job searches are so effective is that 80% of jobs are not advertised. While you’ll still want to apply for a job that you find that is advertised, you’ll also track down and reach out to the hiring manager for those positions. While networking is a good thing to do, its value lies in helping you connect with, and meet with, more hiring managers. The end game is to get in front of as many hiring managers as you can – the people who have the power to hire you.This is why the main focus in a job search needs to be on a targeted job search, which can be enabled by networking your way to hiring managers as well.

At The Dream Life Team, while we do branding exercises, resume writing and coaching, an important part of what we do is help job seekers with a targeted job search. We provide the following services for a targeted job search:

§ Conduct a 1-hour training session on targeted job search (tapping the hidden job market); includes proper way to make contact and what to avoid doing;

§ Produce lists of companies based upon geography, industry, size of company and many other criteria;

§ Research and find hiring managers along with their phone number and email address;

§ Provide templates for corresponding with your personal network and those you will reach out to in a targeted job search

Once you’re armed with the knowledge on how to conduct a targeted search, and once you have a list of companies and hiring managers – you’ll see a previously stagnant job search take off.

Clients that engage with us see job searches that are accelerated up to 50%-75%. In terms of ROI, for every month faster you get hired, for every multiple of $100K you make in salary that is $8,000 in your pocket. The investment for our services often pays $25K – $50K in salary obtained by getting hired faster.

In addition those who work with a coach find jobs 15-46% faster.

However long you’ve been in your job search, whether 1 day or 12 months – if you’d like to accelerate the search, these are the steps to take now.

What are you waiting for?  I’m here to help those ambitious leaders who want to get their job search moving – might that be you?

Warmly,  Rebecca


Top 5 Ways for your LinkedIn Profile to get noticed by recruiters

A stellar LinkedIn profile is key to being found by recruiters that are looking to fill positions.  If your profile is not optimized to be found by those searching to fill positions, it will be invisible and you won’t get calls for related positions.

Here are the top 5 ways to ensure you have a LinkedIn profile that gets results:

§ Get a Professional Photo

I can’t over-emphasize the importance of paying a photographer $100 or so for a professional head shot or even a photo session.  It makes a huge difference in having your LinkedIn profile come off as polished and professional.

I’ve seen a number of profiles with pictures that are not working – a bobblehead of a baseball player (this guy even asked me why he was not getting results), pictures of people in bars, even a picture of a horse.  Just don’t go there.  Make the investment and get a professional picture.  It’s worth every penny.

§ Ensure you have an All-Star Status / Complete Profile

If your LinkedIn profile is filled in completely, it will rise to the top of recruiter searches and get you noticed.  If it is not, you will be mostly invisible.  In 2015, LinkedIn stated that users with complete profiles are 40 times more likely to receive opportunities.

LinkedIn will show you on the top right of the screen if your profile is filled in well enough to achieve “all-star” status.  If not more needs to be filled in.

An important part of having the all-star status is having a current position listed on LinkedIn.  This can be a bit tricky if you are currently unemployed.  Its OK to state that you’re seeking new opportunities but you also don’t want to sound desperate.

Once LinkedIn notifies you that your status is at an “all-star” level, your profile will be much more likely to be seen by recruiters.

§ Ensure you have a focused title

In the title section, you’ll want to list the job roles you’ll be going for.  This is the section where recruiters search for people who will fill their open position, usually by searching on the job title.  You’ll want to enter the keywords that match the job titles being search, and several variations of that role.  For example:

A telehealth director would put:  Director of Telehealth | Digital Health Operations | Remote Telehealth | Virtual Care

Note that one specific job type is being targeted.  Also, the various keywords used to describe that role in different ways are all used.

Take some time up front to identify the correct roles that you will be going for, and only list 1-2 roles that you want to go for, and write them using all variations of what the role is called.

If you list 4 or more unrelated titles just because you’re a jack-of-all-trades, you come across as a bit unfocused.  Try to narrow it down to 1-2 roles.  I’ve seen people land much faster when they are very focused on what job title / job role they are going for.

§ Load your profile with Keywords

You’ll want your profile to be loaded with keywords that will match the job descriptions of roles recruiters are trying to fill.

§ Create an irresistible Summary

This is the hardest part and is very difficult to do alone.  If you’ve worked with a resume writer who has truly been able to draw out your unique strengths and identify the reasons why an employer should hire you, this is the first step.  The second step is to take this information and weave it into an interesting, irresistible narrative.  The narrative has to make recruiters read it and want to pick up the phone and call you.

Here is an example of a “catchy” phrase I included in a LinkedIn profile:

“If I was considered a super hero, I’d be the person who parachutes in and rescues daunting, complex global operational projects with tight deadlines, while exuding confidence, warmth and charisma.”

Wow – what a statement!  Would you want to hire this person?  I certainly would.

The summary section has to capture the person’s strengths, sell the person, and compel the recruiter to pick up the phone and call immediately.  Your LinkedIn summary has to be THAT compelling to generate immediate phone calls.

I know a compelling LinkedIn profile summary gets results.  The person in the example I noted above, my client, started getting multiple calls in 48 hours.

Another person I worked with had looked for work for 6 months and had little to no results, then after I re-did the resume and profile, he started getting calls for jobs immediately and secured an offer within a week.

If you think you have a perfect LinkedIn profile but it’s not capturing your amazingness, giving it a makeover might be just the ticket to re-energizing your job search.

Waiting for 6 months going it alone and not getting anywhere can be costly – nearly half a year’s salary can be lost.  Or, you can work with someone to bring out your “amazingness” and get hired much faster.

I’d love to have you as my next success story – I have openings to work with just 3 more people this month.  Contact me for a complimentary strategy session to see if we are a good fit to work together.


10 tips for getting hired (a recruiter and a resume writer walk into a bar)

Yes, true story – a recruiter and a resume writer discussed top tips for getting hired – while meeting up on a hike and then walking into a bar together.

Last Sunday I (resume writer / career coach) had the good fortune to meet up with a recruiter named Pamela on my group hike – we so enjoyed our conversation on the trail and we continued it at a local tavern for lunch following the hike.

We shared lots of stories and experiences, and she and I came up with the following tips to pass along to my readers and clients: some you may have heard of, others maybe not, but all are good reminders.

§ Don’t forget to send in thank you notes to everyone

Everyone you interview with should receive a thank you note. This includes all initial screening persons, team members and the hiring manager. Many people forget to send a recruiter a thank you note.

We agreed – send in an email thank you note – mention you are following up with a note in the USPS (snail) mail as well. This will keep you more “top of mind” for the hiring team. And, the email will ensure you don’t miss a traveling hiring manager. Before getting off the phone or leaving the interview, ensure you have all necessary email addresses, names, and physical addresses.

§ Research the company before an interview – and the interviewer

Be able to answer the question “Tell me more about what you know about the company and why you want to work here.” Conduct some research ahead of time on the company culture and the company initiatives. Know the “major headlines” for the company. Be able to articulate why you want to work there more than anywhere else.

Better yet, check out each person you’re going to interview with on google and LinkedIn BEFORE the interview. Look for things to bring up to build rapport, such as mutual interests and mutual colleges attended. Don’t go too far and make the person feel like they are being stalked – it might be a little creepy to share that you know where they live or share other personal information. You want to develop rapport with casual, interesting facts but nothing too personal.

§ Do extra things to set you apart from other interviewees

Send in the 90-day action plan I mentioned in my previous post. This recruiter has never seen anyone do this, and stated she would be very impressed by one.

§ Be prepared for standard interview questions

You will be asked about strengths – gear the answer to answering why you’re the best person for the job. Be able to discuss weaknesses – you’ll want to come across as a self-aware person who took the steps to improve an area of weakness. Be able to explain job transitions, as well as employment gaps and any other “sticky situation” type of question. And yes, be prepared to answer the question “Were you ever fired from a job” and try to have a good answer to this question, while being 100% truthful.

§ Have a professionally-written resume – it WILL enable you to stand out

Many times, horrible-looking resumes are used to apply for jobs. If a recruiter has to dig into the resume to try to find your main selling points, or even your career objective, it will be tossed. Resumes that are polished stand out from the others and ultimately land interviews.

§ Customize your resume and add keywords that are noted in the job description

While many companies will use an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) to search resumes for keywords, this recruiter does it manually. She will sit with the resume open and the job description open and look to see if keyword phrases for the job description are in the resume. If the job description mandates “project manager” experience or an “MBA”, these keywords have to be on your resume, or the resume will be tossed. If the title of the job description says “Project Manager” then you probably want this to be the main title on your resume.

Therefore, while you want a professionally written resume, be prepared to customize and add keywords as needed so your resume matches the job description. Yes, it is extra work, but it has to be done so don’t skip this step.

§ In some industries, be willing to accept a lower amount of salary or maybe less vacation

Unless you are in a “hot” career field (some engineering, computer and medical jobs for example), be prepared to accept a salary that might be a bit lower than your last job.  Be prepared to accept possibly 10-20% lower at times. Not a hard and fast rule, but there are a lot of unemployed people which creates a lot of demand for a smaller number of jobs.

Also, while you may be adamant about having 4 weeks of vacation, company policy may state that new hires can’t have more than 3. Some companies have flexibility, some do not. So unless you’re flexible too, this may lead to being turned down for a job that you might be a great fit for.

§ Remember that some companies will hire older workers

We all hear about age discrimination. Many older workers will try to hide their age in various ways. While this is good advice, know that not everyone thinks it’s a crime to be over age 50. Some employers do value the wisdom of older employees. And some employers note that older workers might be more likely to stay longer on a job and have a stronger work ethic.

§ Note time off on a sabbatical

I’ve come across a number of my resume clients that have taken time off in the past few years and have not been looking for work during this time. We both agreed that this should be noted on the resume as an “Intentional Sabbatical.” Then, list what was done on the sabbatical whether it was traveling, volunteering, part-time contract work or caring for a sick relative. This will set the person apart from someone who has been unemployed for a number of years and can’t find work. But be honest and only list an intentional sabbatical if you really took one, and really were not looking for work during this time.

§ Don’t lie about anything. Ever. (No explanation needed).

As I mentioned before, prepare answers to tough “sticky situation” questions before you go into the interview. Do your best to present the information as positively as possible. Never say anything bad about a former employer or former boss.

But however you put things, don’t ever lie about anything. It not only will exclude you from the job, it will destroy your credibility and word can get around. We all make mistakes in life, often people can understand that. Be real, be honest and have answers prepared ahead of time.


Some of these tips you may have heard before, but all are a good reminder. I am really grateful as a resume writer / career coach to have spent a wonderful afternoon with a new recruiter friend and I hope these tips we came up with are helpful to you.


5 Common Mistakes Career Leaders make on their resumes that can cost an interview

These 5 common resume mistakes can easily cost the job interview for manager, directors, VPs and executives.

At this level in your career, you should know how to write a killer resume that not only lands you an interview, but one that highlights your strengths and positions you as the top candidate.   I’ve “fixed” many resumes that have had the mistakes listed below.  Recently I re-worked a resume for a VP of Sales.  Before, he had not received any interviews in 6 months.  After we re-worked the resume he reported getting multiple interviews per week.

Five of the most common mistakes with resumes are: they don’t have a title, or they have an incorrect title; they have a boring summary paragraph, if they have one at all; their key accomplishments are not categorized and are in table format; their job accomplishments are vague and yield a “so what” response; and their overall resume is lacking keywords.   Let’s look at each in more detail:

  • They don’t have a title, or they have an incorrect title

Ensure you have your title tied to an actual real role that companies hire for – and at the appropriate level – such as “Marketing Assistant” or “Director of Innovation” or “VP of Marketing” or “Chief Marketing Officer.”  Be very specific.  If you’re in the Marketing Department, state “Director of Marketing” or “Social Media Manager” or “Market Research Analyst” – don’t just say “Marketing.”  The person reading it should not have to guess or try to figure out where you belong in the company – and they won’t waste time on this.  “Global Project Manager” is clearer than “Operational Leader” for a person who wants to manage global projects in a variety of areas.  “Commercial Development” and not “Marketing” is the right term for a person who wants to find new applications to scientific products and grow a business unit.

  • They have a boring summary paragraph, if they have one at all

The summary paragraph, located just beneath your title, is one of the most important parts of a resume.  You have maybe 5-10 seconds to capture the attention of the person going through the stack of resumes for a position.  Often, summary paragraphs read like a boring history of what you’ve done in the past.  They don’t sell the candidate and share what he or she can do.  And often they don’t capture the essence and personality of the candidate either.  Recently I met the most dynamic, outgoing and gifted person – but the amazing person she is did not come across on her resume.  We worked together to capture her essence and ensure it came across on paper.  You need to sell who you are and what you’re doing for a new organization.

  • Their key accomplishments are not categorized and are in table format

Bulleted accomplishments lists are located just after the summary paragraph and before the next section which is often the professional experience section.  I often see bulleted lists of accomplishments that are put into a MS Word table.  Although it “looks” OK, the problem with this is that text inside a table cannot be read by an applicant tracking system (the ATS, or the computer system that scans your resume for keywords to match the job you are applying for).  In other words, the HR person that is looking for the ATS to rank resumes with the best fit can’t read all of your words that are in tables – words inside tables are invisible to the ATS.

Instead, your key accomplishments should be present in free text form without being in a table.   If you have more than 9, they are easier to read if you categorize them with a main heading at the top and sub-headings beneath that describe the heading.  For example, “Project Management” might be a heading, and sub-heads are project management activities you are familiar with.

  • Their job accomplishments are vague and yield a “so what” response

When outlining each job, you should list the company worked for and dates of employment, followed by a title and a brief description of your daily responsibilities (these should not be bullets but a few sentences below the title).  When you get to accomplishment bullets, you want to list a result followed by how this was accomplished.  For example, “Drove sales increase of 35% by establishing regular customer visits.”  Instead of “Regularly visited customers resulting in increased sales.  This first example shows a quantitative result that wows a hiring manager.  The second bullet is more of a “so what.”  You will be courted by hiring managers if you demonstrate what you can do for them – what results you can accomplish – rather than sharing what activities you did at your prior company.

  • Their overall resume is lacking keywords

As we discussed above, your resume needs to match up with a real job that has an actual title.  The HR folks who are reviewing your resume will be looking at how well your resume matches up with the job description and particularly the requirements and day-to-day responsibilities. They will look to see if the keywords in your resume match up with the keywords in the job description. Do not assume they will know that you know MS Office software and leave that off.  Also, don’t summarize responsibilities such as “understand all phases of the project management lifecycle” – spell out each phase in this example.  The person reading the resume may not understand what the phases of the project management life cycle are – and the computer looking for the words to describe each phase will not find them on your resume.

Do you need assistance in taking your resume from so-so to killer status?

I regularly work with people who say things like this after working with me: “I am so impressed with how strong my resume is now, with your help!  I agree with you that the top summary section is very strong; I am sincerely amazed at how polished this new resume is in its presentation of my skills. I read my resume and say – wow – I would love to hire her.” – Director of Telehealth

“I contracted with Rebecca on recreating my resume and upgrading my LinkedIn profile. Since she has completed each of these I have seen an increase in hits on LinkedIn and responses to my resume submissions for positions on-line with multiple interviews per week now. I highly recommend you at least reach out for a consultation as I too felt that everything was ready to go that I had completed on my own but she will take your documents and profiles to the next level.” – VP of Sales

If you can use help creating a killer resume which lands job interviews, we need to talk. 

Don’t delay – time is money!  For every multiple of $100,000 you make in salary, getting a job 1 month faster will put $8,000 in your pocket.

I have openings to work with just two more individuals in transition this month.

To schedule an exploratory call, email me at: or call at 440-709-4724.   

Best wishes for your success –  Rebecca Bosl

Who works with a Career Coach?


Now that we have explored why to work with a Career / Job Search coach, who actually works with one, and when is a coach engaged?


Following is a list of those who should engage with a Career / Job Search Coach:

  • The job seeker who has been going it alone and not really getting anywhere, and finds that the outplacement provided by the company really did not meet all of his or her needs
  • The savvy manager working in a company in a downward spiral, who is aware enough to see “the writing on the wall” and wants to be proactive and develop an exit strategy
  • The newer college grad living in mom and dad’s basement who needs direction and a good job search strategy
  • The college student who wants to get ahead of the game in developing a resume and lining up internships during college years to be better positioned for a job after graduation
  • The 40 or 50-something professional who is tired of the daily grind and wonders if there is something more satisfying out there to do
  • The person who is about to retired – or newly retired – who needs to supplement his or her income in retirement, but wants to now do something they will really enjoy
  • The person who hates their job and can’t really put his or her finger on what will provide satisfaction in the career

If that sounds like you, schedule a free consultation to work with me. 

If you’re thinking of putting off working with a Career / Job Search coach, the question is:

  • Do you have 6 months of savings to live off of while you experiment with your untested job search tactics?
  • Do you want to risk settling for less when it comes to your career?
  • Do you want to spend another miserable decade in a job you don’t enjoy that is going nowhere?

My passion truly is to help people move forward into the life of their dreams.   Life is short – and there has never been a better time than NOW to take the next step.

I offer a complimentary strategy session to understand your challenges and determine if it is a good fit for us to work together.  I have openings to work with just two more individuals this month.

To schedule a session, email us at: or call 440-709-4724.


Best wishes for your success –  Rebecca Bosl