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April 2008
Don't Be So Obedient!

by Susan Reynolds

In most job searches, a couple of things typically occur:
1) You’ll be asked for your compensation history.
2) You’ll be asked for your resume.

Here’s why you shouldn’t immediately respond to either of those requests. It may not be the right time strategically FOR YOU! Pause a moment to determine your best strategy for winning the ULTIMATE goal: getting the job!

Both job searchers and screeners have gotten into a modern-age habit of impersonalizing the process. This really doesn’t serve either party well. It may seem like job-search insurrection, but you might consider not sending your fabulous resume until you’ve tried to secure a personal, face to face meeting. Try to have an initial conversation with your contact to determine the organization’s needs and problems. Then formulate your thoughts as to the best features and capabilities that you can offer to solve those problems and serve those needs. Then your resume and other letters or documents can be tailored to really move the discussion forward. You’ll be able to sell yourself personally, and not just on paper! You’ll be able to effectively present your resume in the best possible format with an emphasis on your appropriate strengths.

Also, don’t feel pressured to tell an interviewer your personal family or financial information. Encourage discussion of the job and its requirements, and appropriate compensation for that work. Your compensation should be based on the service you’re providing to the company, not the pay you received from your previous work. No one wants to feel that they’re not being paid what they’re worth, and good companies are generally prepared to pay fairly for competent help!

Susan Reynolds is a senior partner at Newmarket Careers in Santa Clarita, a job search and career strategy firm geared toward managerial, executive, and senior level professional careers.  She can be reached at or

Other Job and Career Success Related Articles:
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Using the Internet for Job Search...

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