Resumes. Portfolios. Business Casual?

I just finished reading this all-too-familiar post about what NOT to do if you want to get a job. It’s called 13 Ways Your Resume Can Say “I’m Unprofessional.” This particular topic is impressively over discussed, but it seems that people still aren’t getting it. I would add “don’t lie on your resume” to any list of advice. Here’s why:

Resume. A Noun meaning a brief account of one’s professional or work experience and qualifications, often submitted with an employment application.

I don’t want to offend anybody by asking this, but if you have taken the time to sit down and create a document that demonstrates your professionalism, how could you not edit it? How could you use an embarrassing or offending e-mail address as your primary method of contact?

Though these mistakes seem like obvious ways to get your foot out the door, I also understand that sometimes you don’t know how to do something right until somebody tells you. My resume may not be the pick-of-the-pile, but I’m confident that it lacks obtrusive faults. I’m not sure I can say the same about my portfolio.

Knowing that many other aspiring PR professionals share my portfolio anxiety, I wanted to go over a few tips I’ve picked up recently. Check out this post when you have some time too.

This weekend I had two extremely beneficial mock interviews with CFM and Waggener Edstrom Worldwide through the UO Journalism School’s Portland Paddle event. They advised that I include links and buttons to my social media pages on my resume, including Twitter, LinkedIn, and this blog, but definitely not Facebook.

Additionally, I plan on making an online portfolio that enhances my print portfolio by offering a more interactive look at what I’ve done and focusing on my more “techy” skills. It’s important that we are able to demonstrate our ability to use social media, produce electronic PR products, and understand their potential in the industry.

Somebody, correct me if I’m wrong, but there is no formula for success when creating your hard copy portfolio. The best advice I’ve received is that it should reflect you, your skills, and your professional aspirations in one coherent story. Keep these three factors balanced so that your interviewer doesn’t feel like they are looking at a personal scrap book. Your professional aspirations should be highlighted by the work you’ve done and the personality you’ve put into it.

I hope that helps somebody feel more confident than I did going into my interviews last weekend. Anybody want to break down “business casual” for me?


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