career and job

Selasa, 07 September 2010

Do the Right Thing With Your References

by Caroline Levchuck, Yahoo! HotJobs

If you're like most job seekers, you probably pay lots of attention to your resume and even your cover letter. In comparison, your references may be something of an after-thought, but treating them as such is a huge tactical error in your quest for work. A thoughtful and stellar reference can help you get hired, while an unenthusiastic, uninformative reference may hurt your chances.

Here are eight do's and don'ts to make the most of your references.

The Do's:

    * Do remove "References available upon request" from your resume. Of course they are!
    * Do mention a reference by name in your cover letter if that individual works at the company to which you're applying and has a good reputation there. This will help ensure that your resume gets the attention it deserves.
    * Do keep your references varied. List just one per job or period in your professional life.
    * Do check in with your references at least two times a year. Let each person know where you're at in your career. Also, remember to see if there's any way you can help them in their careers.

The Don'ts:

    * Don't give your references out to prospective employers without being asked. Also, make sure you're being asked at the appropriate point in the hiring process. It should be clear that you're under serious consideration when you provide them.
    * Don't provide a prospective employer with too many references. Three should be ample. Just be sure that each has something unique to say about your talents and your contributions at each job you've done.
    * Don't list references that go too far back in your employment history, unless the person you're using as a reference is famous in the field in which you're working, or your contribution to that company was particularly noteworthy.
    * Don't ask your references to "stretch the truth." It's bad enough if you get caught in a lie. If a professional reference is implicated in it, it can damage that person's reputation as well.

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