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Chapter 15

Building Careers and Writing Rsum

1. How can you think like an employer if you have no professional business experience?
Your perceived ability to perform the job is obviously an essential part of your potential quality as a
new hire. However, hiring managers consider more than just your ability to handle the responsibilities youll
be given. They want to know if youll be reliable and motivated, if youre somebody who gets it when it
comes to being a professional in todays workplace.

2. If you were a team leader at a summer camp for children with special needs, should you include this in
your employment history if you are applying for work that is unrelated? Explain your answer.
Yes. Because many employers are involved in their local communities, they tend to look positively
on applicants who are active and concerned members of their communities as well. Consider including
community service activities that suggest leadership, teamwork, communication skills, technical aptitude, or
other valuable attributes.

3. Can you use a qualifications summary if you dont yet have extensive professional experience in your
desired career? Why or why not?
Yes. Because the qualifications summary brands you as a candidate and also expresses your
career objective and title of the qualifications summary signals the type of job opportunities you are

4. Some people dont have a clear career path when they enter the job market. If youre in this situation,
how would your uncertainty affect the way your write your rsum?
I would make a functional rsum, sometimes called a skills rsum, because emphasizes your
skills and capabilities, identifying employers and academic experience in subordinate sections. This
arrangement stresses individual areas of competence rather than job history. The functional approach also
has three advantages:
(1) Without having to read through job descriptions, employers can see what you can do for them.
(2) You can emphasize earlier job experience.
(3) You can deemphasize any lengthy unemployment or lack of career progress.
Or a combination rsum meshes the skills focus of the functional format with the job history focus of the chronological
format. The chief advantage of this format is that it allows you to focus attention on your capabilities when you dont have a
long or steady employment history, without raising concerns that you might be hiding something about your past. I f you

have little or no job experience and not much to discuss outside of your education, indicating involvement
in athletics or other organized student activities lets employers know that you dont spend all your free time
hanging around your apartment playing video games. Also consider mentioning publications, projects, and other
accomplishments that required relevant business skills.

5. Between your sophomore and junior years, you quit school for a year to earn the money to finish college.
You worked as a loan-processing assistant in a finance company, checking references on loan applications,
typing, and filing. Your manager made a lot of the fact that he had never attended college. He seemed to
resent you for pursuing your education, but he never criticized your work, so you thought you were doing
okay. After youd been working there for six months, he fired you, saying that youd failed to be thorough
enough in your credit checks. You were actually glad to leave, and you found another job right away at a
bank, doing similar duties. Now that youve graduated from college, youre writing your rsum. Will you
include the finance company job in your work history? Explain.

It will depend because to a potential new employer it may leave an unfavorable connotation on the
candidate but, if there is little to no relevance between the positions, you do not have to showcase it on
your resume. The hiring company is primarily interested in relevant experience and skills you can bring to
their company. If the reason you were terminated was due to a minor issue that can be easily explained
and seen from your point of view by a potential employer, than including the position on your resume
should not be a concern. Be honest with yourself and think through your response to a potential
interviewer. Your answers to the questions above will tell you whether it is appropriate to include the job on
your resume. If it is included, consider the following to help you through the application and interview

Chapter 16
Applying and Interviewing for Employment

1. How can you distinguish yourself from other candidates in a screening interview and still keep your
responses short and to the point? Explain.
During these interviews, show keen interest in the job, relate your skills and experience to the
organizations needs, listen attentively, and ask insightful questions that show youve done your research.
2. How can you prepare for a situational or behavioral interview if you have no experience with the job for
which you are interviewing?
To prepare for a behavioral interview, review your work or college experiences to recall several
instances in which you demonstrated an important job-related attribute or dealt with a challenge such as
uncooperative team members or heavy workloads. Get ready with responses that quickly summarize the
situation, the actions you took, and the outcome of those actions. In the situational interview, the situations
will likely relate to the job youre applying for, so the more you know about the position, the better prepared
youll be.
3. If you lack one important qualification for a job but have made it past the initial screening stage, how
should you prepare to handle this issue during the next round of interviews? Explain your answer.
Recruiters dont need that much information about you at the initial screening stage, and they
probably wont read it. But, if you lack one important qualification, then in the selection stage, show keen
interest in the job, relate your skills and experience to the organizations needs, listen attentively, and ask
insightful questions that show youve done your research.
4. What is an interviewer likely to conclude about you if you dont have any questions to ask during the
The questions you ask are just as important as the answers you provide. By asking insightful
questions, you can demonstrate your understanding of the organization, you can steer the discussion into
areas that allow you to present your qualifications to best advantage, and you can verify for yourself
whether this is a good opportunity. Plus, interviewers expect you to ask questions and tend to look
negatively on candidates who dont have any questions to ask.
5. Why is it important to distinguish unethical or illegal interview questions from acceptable questions?

If an interviewer asks a potentially unlawful question, consider your options carefully before you
respond. You can answer the question as it was asked, you can ask tactfully whether the question might be
prohibited, you can simply refuse to answer it, or you can try to answer the question behind the question.
Only you can decide which is the right choice based on the situation. Even if you do answer the question
as it was asked, think hard before accepting a job offer from this company if you have alternatives.