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Archive for April, 2011

Standing out in your Job Interview

Interview Secrets Exposed

A true story…

A candidate was applying for a job at one of the large investment banks.

Out of 150 candidates the hiring manager had selected the top 10 best resumes to perform first round interviews. Every interview was 15-20 minutes long. The final question the hiring manager asked to each of the candidates was

“Tell me something about the company.”

Nine out of ten of the candidates rattled off information they had read from the company’s “about us page”, but one candidate stood out. After reading about the company’s strategic purchase of a new acquisition, the candidate was able to impress the hiring manager with his (somewhat different) knowledge.

The hiring manager later offered this candidate the role not because he was the smartest candidate, but because he showed his dedication by going the extra step in his interview preparation.

 

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What are the most common job interview question

Job Interview Questions

Imagine going to your interview today and starting your new job tomorrow …. You Can

The Brand new Ebook from RedStarResume Interview Secrets Exposed” is an insiders guide on everything you need to know in order to nail your job interview.

Follow our steps and make sure that you are well prepared to answer every possible interview question when the opportunity presents itself. This E-book is a compilation of many months of research and discussions with hiring managers and career experts in recruitment, career counselling and interviews.

The purchase of this E-book is your first step in ensuring that you get the job! Interviewing is all about research, confidence and creating a good rapport. The hiring manager needs to know that you are capable of performing the tasks of the job and also that you will be a good addition to the team. The interview is your time to shine. Don’t be intimidated because you don’t think you have all the skills that are wanted in the job specification. Most businesses will teach you as you go, so lacking a certain skill will not mean you can’t get the job. If you do lack certain skills or experience, you need to work twice as hard in your interview to portray what you do have that you can bring this job. It is a myth to think that the most skilled person will get the job. When it comes to hiring the right person, it is about the overall package – skills, personality, confidence and also the passion you show in your interview.

Did you Know – In less than 30 minutes you can have all the answers you need to quicklu and easily prepare yourself for your next important job interview. Rather than going into the interview feeling nervous and unprepared, you can stand out from the competition and force the hiring manager to take notice. This simple, powerful formula guarantees you will be prepared for any question that comes your way.

 

Check out Interview Secrets Exposed

Interview Questions Interview Samples Interview Tips and Advice

Front Office Bankers Resume Writing

April 22, 2011 1 comment

When it comes to resume/CV writing there is no magic formula to follow that will ensure your resume will be read. There are however clear dos and don’ts that will either add value to your resume or work in the negative by having your resume deleted. No matter if you’re a front office banker or part of the mailroom team, listing and identifying achievements and backing these achievements up with numerical examples is the number one way to make your resume standout.

red man Front Office Bankers Resume Writing

Too many times a job candidate will focus much of their resume on standard day to day duties. For example every person on the trading desk knows how to “analyze data”, “liaise with clients” and “maximize opportunities”. These are soft skills which are expected. It does not enhance your resume as it does not tell the reader anything. For example when writing a resume for an equity trader it is no longer good enough just to list these soft skills. In order to effectively write a good resume you need to clearly identify your areas of expertise but most importantly present quantitative examples

Writing your resume is not about reinventing the wheel, it is about ensuring that you adequately highlight everything that is required to make sure that your resume is selected and you are given the chance to present yourself in the interview. Divide your resume into sections and concentrate on using bullet points to make the resume clear and possible for the reader to scan.

As a banker, your professional experience is the most important aspect on your resume and needs to be placed on page one. However in order to make your resume stand out above the competition I like to include a short career summary, an introduction (2-3 sentences) which adequately summarizes your career. For example:

“Masters of Business Administration with seven years experience as an equity trader. With a strong background in analysis, risk management and strategic planning, I have planned, coordinated, and performed diverse trading functions in various sectors.”

Following your short career summary is the most important aspect of your resume which is listing your top key achievements in bullet point (5-6 key achievements) with an emphasize of using “keyword” rich words (These are words which are mentioned in the job description or words which headhunters or recruiters are likely to search for in their database)

Remember, the most important aspect of listing these achievements is backing everything up with quantifiable results of your work. Using the equity trader as an example, part of your success is measured in numbers so ensure your main achievements by including quantifiable examples

‘Increased cash flow by $15 million by consolidating …..”

‘Revenue and income growth of 55% over a 12-month period, through ….”

“Key member of an elite trading team that generated more than $65 million by ….”

The final part of your resume presentation is your work experience, education and professional memberships. Again the most important aspect is providing examples to everything you write and incorporating achievements as opposed to just listing day to day duties. Always ensure that you provide dates on your resume and that the resume flows chronologically. The document needs to be as easy as possible for someone to read. The more difficult you make your resume to follow the more likely it will end up being deleted.

As a front office banker, focus your resume on your leadership abilities and achievements to guarantee that your resume stands out from the crowd!

© RedStarResume Publications – Professional Resume Writing

Do you have a job interview coming up? Check out INTERVIEW SECRETS EXPOSED

An Insiders Guide: Everything you need to know in order nail your job interview

Interview Questions Interview Samples Interview Tips & Advice

Resume Writing Cover Letter Writing Job Success

 Front Office Bankers Resume Writing

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Secret Tips on How to Answer the Hardest Job Interview Question

April 17, 2011 2 comments

What’s your greatest weakness?

Without doubt one of the hardest questions to answer. Being too honest can severely affect your interview. Everyone has something they can work on, so saying you have no weaknesses makes you sound arrogant. The best way to approach this is to think of a weakness that won’t impact your getting the job. Remember that this question is a work-related question, so don’t say that your biggest weakness is not helping enough around the house or, the worst answer I ever heard, “chocolate cake.”

Tips:

1)    Do not mention a weakness that will prevent you from being hired. If you’re going for a job as a telemarketer, don’t say your greatest weakness is speaking on the telephone!

2)    No clichéd responses. “My greatest weakness is that I am a perfectionist.”

3)    Do not avoid the question. The interviewer has asked you this question and you need to answer it.

My advice is to provide a real work-related weakness and follow it up with examples of how you are fixing the problem.

Example:

If you’re asked this question, give a small, work-related flaw that you’re working hard to improve. Example: “I’ve been told that I occasionally focus on details and miss the bigger picture, so I’ve been spending time laying out the complete project every day to see my overall progress.”

Admitting a real weakness and then following up with what you’re doing to improve yourself is preferable. “My presentation skills are not as strong as I’d like, so I signed up for weekend presentation skills classes and also joined a Toastmasters club.” Remember that the specific job you are interviewing for will help to determine how you answer the question.

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Everything you need to know in order to nail your job interview

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Interview Secrets Exposed1 Secret Tips on How to Answer the Hardest Job Interview Question

Interview Secrets Exposed

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How Resumes differ from country to country

Read my article from http://www.expatarrivals.com

Let me know what you think – How else do resumes differ from country to country?

Just how important is having a country-specific resume to your chances of getting employed? Can the resume that got you a job in the UK be used for the Australian job market? Do you really have to design a new resume depending on the country?
The answer is simple. Just as every resume and cover letter you write needs to be targeted and focused toward the company you are applying for, the same concept is applied toward the job market you are applying for. Different countries expect and require certain information to be present on resumes, and therefore it is critical that your new resume meets the unique requirements of that country.

Just because one country requires including personal details such as marital status or date of birth does not mean this standard applies to others. Not only can this be seen as inappropriate, it can also possible be illegal, and your resume will be deleted before it has even been read!

European requirements

Recently in Europe, the rules for resume writing changed substantially. As part of the European Union (EU), all members follow the same resume criteria and format. The Europass CV was created to “provide citizens with the opportunity to present in clear and comprehensive way information on their qualifications and competences”.

This is a fantastic idea for people applying for roles in Europe as there is a standard template to complete that avoids issues such as cultural differences and different requirements between the countries.

While this may be good for a French national applying for a role in Belgium, the rules change when applying to countries such as the USA, Australia or Asia.

  • It is typical to see information such as nationality, date of birth and gender on European and Asian resumes.
  • In South Africa it is even required to have even further personal information such as ID number and ethnicity (the latter to clarify one’s BEE or affirmative action status).
  • In Australia and the US, however, stricter privacy laws make this personal information unnecessary. In the US, an employer has no legal right to know your age. (They do have a right, however, to ask your age only if local, state, or federal law requires that employees be over a certain age.)

USA differences

copyright Black Bird TeesIn today’s society the terms “CV” and “resume” are often used interchangeably. Take note, however, if you are applying for a job in the USA, as there are major differences between a “resume” and a “CV”.

An American Curriculum Vitae (CV) is NOT the same as a CV from countries around the world.  What countries outside of the USA know as a “Curriculum Vitae” (or “CV”) is called also called a “resume” in the US. A “Curriculum Vitae” in America is not a resume – it is a longer document and is usually written only by a researcher, educator, or academic.

Thinking of including a picture?

When it comes to putting a picture on your resume, different countries have different approaches. In the UK you would never attach a photo, whereas in Germany or France you would. Many Asian countries also include pictures with their applications. In the US and Australia it is not recommended or encouraged.

My personal opinion is to leave your picture off your resume. The most important aspect of your resume is the content and it’s vital to ensure that the reader of your resume is more interested in your skills than what you look like.

With all the differences between resumes around the world, it’s important that you do your research into the country before submitting your resume. A professional resume writer can often help you with the “dos” and “do nots” of resume writing in a certain country, and he or she can also provide assistance with resume format, structure and presentation.

With any resume (no matter where you are applying in the world), focus your content on achievements and value-added duties you have performed. At the end of the day, the employer wants to know how you can add value and what skills, experience and expertise you can bring to the business.

And finally, never embellish or fabricate achievements or qualifications. These will often be exposed sooner or later and can result in dismissal, expulsion or even criminal prosecution in those countries with punitive legal codes.

http://www.expatarrivals.com/article/how-resumes-differ-from-country-to-country

How Many Pages Is Your Resume?

What is the perfect length of a resume?

Is one page too short and is four pages too long?

Boutiques v big banks – which is the best bet for your career?

Read my article from eFinancialCareers – “Job News and Views”

It was 7.00am on a Monday morning and as I sat on the train on the way to work I found myself behind two gentlemen in designer suits who I instinctively expected to be bankers. I was right. They soon started talking about their respective workplaces.

I became further intrigued as they tried to convince each other that they should jump ship to each others’ firms. The first man worked at a well respected global investment bank which he said was expecting a “big year” in 2011. On the flip side, this meant more time away from his family.

The second guy worked for a boutique bank. He was happy that his travelling days were behind him but moaned about the lack of training that his company was providing to new hires, especially at graduate level. He was spending a lot of time working one-on-one with new employees, which he wasn’t happy about.

Working out the benefits

The man from the global IB mentioned a new gym membership for all employees but said with his hours, working out was not on the agenda. His friend didn’t get this benefit but had vowed to work fewer hours this year to make more time for himself and his family.

Listening to both men got me thinking about the pros and cons of large banks and niche ones. While the fundamentals of your work will be the same, the application of that work can vary.

Where everybody knows your name

The major difference I think is culture. Employees in a boutique are more like family and the whole firm knows your name. In a big bank you probably only interact with members of your team and know little about other people and their duties.

A boutique can therefore have a friendlier feel to it and people work together rather than competing against each other. You have a strong support network, which can be accessed a lot easier than at a larger institution.

Working for a big bank typically means you have one distinct job function, while at a smaller company you are often exposed to several different roles based on current projects. With less hierarchy and fewer processes, boutique employees have a greater chance to expand their knowledge. Being part of a smaller team can also let you stand out and be recognised for your contribution.

Size sometimes matters

However, the prestige of working for a large, well respected bank can be a huge advantage, and you will get fantastic perks and benefits. Although there is a feeling of being small fish in a large pond, having a specific role that you are solely responsible for can provide better future opportunities if you want to process your career in that job function. Training opportunities are generally much greater and more highly regarded by potential employers.

Overall, you need to find the right firm for you, based on factors such as those above. And no matter where you’re working, the atmosphere will be demanding. That’s the very nature of the banking industry – it’s a sink-or-swim culture.

Gavin Redelman, founder, RedStarResume

http://news.efinancialcareers.com.au/newsandviews_item/newsItemId-31540