Category Archives for Personal Branding

Why Does My Resume Need to be in Microsoft Word?

There are two kinds of recruiters and they ask for your resume in Microsft Word for two separate reasons:

  • One kind of recruiter works for an outside agency that gets paid by a client to find candidates for a particular position. This recruiter gets paid only when the position is filled. This type of recruiter may take off your contact information and send the resume to the client. This is to make sure the client doesn’t contact you directly. The recruiter wants to make sure he/she gets paid! That’s why these outside recruitment firms prefer an editable Word document.
  • The other recruiter works within a company, and is typically using an applicant tracking systems (ATS). These systems often don’t do well understanding the PDF format. If you submit your resume in Microsoft Word, the system lets the recruiter search your resume for keywords, and view them easily.


Presenting your work experience section in columns, or creating fancy text boxes and graphics and non-standard fonts.

Taleo and other ATS systems may mangle it so it may actually look hideous.

  • Bullet points are fine.
  • Don’t take your margins all the way to the edge. Leave some white space.


When you save the file, do File…Save As… Then from File Format dropdown, select Word 97-2004 Document (.doc)

This makes your resume “backward compatible” so if a recruiter is using an older version of Word, it still works.

How to Save a Word File, File, Save As...



If your resume is not in Microsoft Word right now, take a few minutes to create a simply formatted Word doc.

Best of luck!

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[Must Watch] Neil Gaiman 2012 Commencement Speech “Make Good Art” – YouTube

Neil Gaiman’s commencement speech to the University of the arts graduating class of 2012 Philadelphia will save you tons of wasted time. Watch it and you will never think about your career decisions the same way. Don’t miss minute 10 onward… it’s brilliant.


“Whatever profession you’re in… you have the ability to make art… the ultimate life saver.”

“When things get tough… this is what you should do, make good art!

“Do the thing that only you can do…. The one thing that only you have… is you!”


Best advice Neil Gaiman got from Stephen King that he didn’t follow – to let go and enjoy the ride!  Are you taking time to enjoy the ride?


“The models of distribution are changing…. no one knows what the landscape will look like… for creative people of all kinds. The rules and assumptions of how you get your work seen are breaking down. The gate keepers are leaving the gates. The old rules are crumbling and nobody knows what the new rules are.”


“Make glorious mistakes.” Too often we hold back and don’t create the masterpiece only we can make because we are afraid to fail. If only our society celebrated our successes and our failures equally. Both represent effort and a leap of faith. We need parents and teachers (adults) who encourage effort more than success.



Have you Tried the Briefcase Technique 2.0? – with Ramit Sethi – [YouTube video]


Here is a simple technique that Ramit Sethi recommends to freelancers to  “land job offers, a higher salary, or a freelance contract easily:”

– Pull out a proposal that helps the client improve their business. These are business problems you have identified that are legitimate challenges for them.

– It is a way to close the sale without getting into a price negotiation. Hardly anyone does this so Ramit’s strategy gives you an edge over your competition.

– I tried this (before I came across this video). But it does take a lot of work. This is not for lazy people. I guess that’s the one caveat. But then, there are no silver bullets so might as well stack the odds in your favor!

It does shift the focus from “Should we hire her?” to “Wow! What should we focus on first?” It didn’t work for me on one occasion but it was less about the strategy, and more about a changed situation at the organization. Want More Great Content and Interviews Like This?My Website:…My Youtube Channel:…Subscribe For More Videos:…

Via  The Briefcase Technique 2.0, with Ramit Sethi – YouTubeThe Briefcase Technique 2.0, with Ramit Sethi – YouTube