"SPECIAL ABILITIES: I can get around any roadblock."
"REFERENCES: Don't bother. My parting from two previous jobs resembled a horror show."
We'll wait for the DVD.
The unusual details job seekers share when applying for positions never cease to amaze me. The goal of any cover letter or resume is to highlight your skills and experience, yet many candidates use these materials as a forum for sharing highly personal information about themselves. For example:
"WORK EXPERIENCE: Established and managed mail order business. Unfortunately, it was deemed an illegal operation, because many of the items had been stolen."
"WORK HISTORY: Unemployed for the past year by choice. Lounging to continue my education when economically feasible."
All that "lounging" could explain the unemployment.
Additional qualifications: "I have hauled hay, worked in a gun shop, restored a '62 Ford, saved a life, photographed family weddings, jumped from an airplane and met Paul Newman."
Not all at the same time, I hope.
"I have an IQ of 149 and am one of the most capable functionaries in existence."
And certainly the most humble.
"RESUME: Attached is a graph of my salary history."
And they say it's all in the presentation.
One New Jersey job seeker included with his resume a picture of himself covered by a bull's eye. The heading read, "Set your sights on me."
An applicant from Oregon wrote next to the phone number at which he could be contacted: "Not too early!"
We wouldn't think of disturbing you.
Finally, this from a resume writer in New Mexico:
"WHY I SHOULD BE HIRED: I am married and have two children. I believe I could be an asset to any firm with a need for such services."
Max Messmer is chairman and CEO of Robert Half International Inc., a specialized staffing firm, and author of Job Hunting for Dummies. For more Resumania visit www.resumania.com.