$1000's on Education / $0 on a Resume

College graduates spend massive amounts of money, incur thousands of dollars in debt, and invest years of time and energy educating themselves, yet they spend no money on the exact thing that will get them interviews and a job, a professionally written and correctly prepared resume. They foolishly believe that their resume is good, good enough, it really doesn't matter that much, or who knows what. If that is you, snap out of it. You're about to blow it. Over the years working in corporate HR and recruiting I have a few theories to explain why people make such bad decisions in life.

Too cheap? Oh, you would be surprised how often this is a key factor. Or, maybe it is not always being cheap, but the person just has incredibly poor decision making abilities or cannot think rationally. If faced with choices such as a good night out at the bar with buds, dinner out with the Mrs., a brand new pair of jeans or shoes, a cell phone plan they can't really afford, or having a professionally prepared document that will significantly improve the person's long term economic picture, guess what entry level college grads choose? It is a no-brainer for many. I know, it is truly amazing and explains why we still have two political parties.

Pride and ignorance is another possible explanation? Many younger and older job seekers have the wonderful thought, I will do it myself. I can surely figure it out. I will browse around and get some samples and piece it together. It will be fine. How hard can it be. It doesn't make that big of a difference anyway. I'll have my wife look at it and save some money in the process. The rationalization can go on and on and on. Stop the insanity college grads. I am thoroughly convinced that man's inherent ability to rationalize, everything and anything, is his biggest downfall.

By your logic, a company that offers a product or service in the marketplace, just like you are doing by selling your service to companies, should be able to take anyone in the company, let's say a finance or an IT person, and have them slap together a professional marketing brochure, advertisement, or PR announcement that will be highly effectively in a competitive market to sell the company's products and services.

It is not happening no matter how many examples they look at, so do not keep heading down the dead end street that a homemade business / resume document is appropriate in any business. Companies have entire marketing departments, or they outsource to marketing and advertising agencies to prepare these items, because they are intelligent enough to know that this is a crucial step in being successful against other competitors (job seekers) to sell their product or service.

As you sit on the sidelines with your fancy new degree sitting in your sock drawer, or hating life in an irrelevant job from what you studied and spent all of that money on, just remember, you did not finish the job. You thought you did, but you did not. Preparing yourself is only half of the battle. Now you need to be an expert sales and marketing person and get yourself sold to the highest bidder.

That starts with either swallowing your pride, prioritizing your expenditures, or just plain snapping out of the distorted thoughts you have on resumes and job seeking. Time is ticking, and the longer you wait, the harder it is going to be. Stand up and get in the game. If you are sending to employers a resume you put together on your own, you are making a huge mistake. I know they did not teach you this in college. They shouldn't have to.

Yes, I am investing time telling you this for my own benefit. As a recruiter, I can't and won't send your crummy resume to the hiring managers I represent. Sorry, I take pride in what I do for a living. You are not going to make me look bad. If you think I am tough on resumes, you should see how hiring managers are.

One last time. An exceptionally well written and prepared entry level resume, something you will never accomplish on your own, has a truly amazing impact on a job search. Be responsible and represent yourself with one. Not doing so is a mistake. This is your livelihood and future we are talking about.

Reprinted by Permission: Professional Recruiter Org