Resume Help/Response problems


Hi Dr. Converse,

Over the last few months I have sent out applications to maybe 75 or 80 businesses (I have an MBA) but only gotten a couple of interviews.  Most of the places I have applied haven't responded at all.  I'm not sure where the problem is.  If my resume or cover letter are not helping me, how do I determine where the difficulty is exactly?  Thanks.

Hi Karen,

This is an extremely common issue with job applicants but it has a relatively simple solution: you need to have a professional who specializes in these difficulties take a look at both your resume and letter and give you some feedback.  I can help you in that regard with a free analysis of both your letter and resume.  Send them as attachments to me at the address below and put "Resume" in the subject line so I don't accidentally delete it.

Once I have a chance to see what you are sending out, I will be in a much better position to advise you as to difficulties your documents are giving you.  Generally, the problems are easily remedied, but their potential for damage to your job chances can be many.  Your formatting could be a problem, you might have spelling or grammar issues, there may be inconsistencies in the way you are presenting yourself.  Remember that the way you present yourself to a potential employer has a lot to do with whether or not you secure an interview.  These documents ARE YOU until or unless you have an interview.  They are everything the reader knows about you and you only have one chance to present yourself in the best possible light.

Unfortunately most applicants don't realize how important it is to do everything right throughout the application process.  The mind set of many people is "What's the big deal?  Just send out my stuff and wait for the phone call, right?"  That kind of thinking is what causes a lot of frustration of many job applicants.  They don't stop to consider how important everything is in the process.  Each step along the way is critical and you haven't achieved anything until you have a signed offer of employment.

The odds of being offered a job can be very high.  One of my most recent clients applied for a position with more than 1500 applicants.  To get a job under those circumstances (which she did), you have to be dedicated to a lot of hard work to get everything absolutely perfect.  You can be certain that at least of few of those applicants will do everything right, so you have to be able to set yourself apart from everyone else.  The starting place to do that is with the resume and letter you send with your application.  They'll have to be perfect for you to have any chance at an interview.

I look forward to getting your email and we'll see what we can do to help you get your documents in shape!

Best wishes,

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Ralph D. Converse, Ph.D.


I can answer questions about general job searches, resume construction, crafting an effective cover letter, and how to prepare for, and conduct, a winning interview. My speciality is the field of education, but I also have extensive background in business and administration. I know what works and what doesn't work and I can make your application package stand out from the rest ... because that is what you have to do.


I have interviewed for, and held, dozens of jobs in a career going back more than 42 years. I have taught at all educational levels including middle school, high school, community college, and university. In more than 42 years of experience on both sides of the job-search process, I have interviewed hundreds of applicants and have reviewed literally tens of thousands of job application packages. I am the author of 12 Mistakes That Got Your Job Application Rejected ... And How To Fix Them! I conduct workshops for job seekers in a variety of locations every year.

Music Educator's Journal, Teaching Music, Music and American Culture (forthcoming, 2013), Last Teacher Standing: The Job is Yours Now! and 12 Mistakes That Got Your Job Application Rejected ... And How To Fix Them!

B.A. New Mexico State University; M.Mus. Southern Illinois University; Ph.D. University of California and University of North Texas

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