KICK THE GRADUATE – Help a Kid Improve This Resume/Career Plan…

Kris Dunn Career Paths, Interviewing, Kris Dunn, Recruiting

New feature today called "Kick the Graduate", where you (the reader and FOT team member) get to judge the career goals and positioning of a new graduate as they aspire to land a choice job in the Talent game right out of undergrad or graduate school.  First up is Nathan Mallory, who penned the following note to me over at the Capitalist:

"I am not writing to you to apply for a job, nor in the hope that you might be able to find one forThe graduate me.  I am a 28 year old recent JD/MBA graduate searching for a job to begin my career, and in a moment of frustration at my lack of success I did a Google search and found your "HR Capitalist" blog.  My reason for writing this email is seeking any advice you could offer regarding my lack of success.  You seem to be knowledgeable, friendly and sympathetic to some of the problems facing job seekers, so it is my hope you can spare me a few minutes, or at the least receive a few moments in your day not dealing with your own desperate job candidates.

I am pursuing a career in the video games industry, armed with several decades of school, two graduate and two undergraduate degrees.  I have applied to positions at fifteen or so companies, for jobs ranging from Associate Producer to Legal Assistant, and not a single one has sent even a follow-up email or telephone call.  The result is that after much searching and a few moments of desperation, I am right back where I started, not knowing whether my resume is bad, my cover letter is unprofessional, or whether I am unqualified due to lack of experience or over-education.  (As a side note, it amazes me to think that a company could simultaneously disqualify you for having too much education but not enough experience.  It's very frustrating for a new grad.)

I've attached copies of a resume and cover letter typical of the kind I have sent out.  I would be extremely grateful if you could take a look at them with your HR expertise, and let me know if I am doing anything horribly wrong.  That said, I'm not ignorant of the recurring theme from your blog that you do not appreciate anyone wasting HR's time, so I will not be upset if this request falls squarely into that category."

Ordinarily, I don't do advice in response to reader mails on this blog or the Capitalist.  However, when a JD/MBA presents himself for help into an industry like the video games industry, I can't resist offering him up (with his permission) and allowing you to tell him the following:

–How he can modify his resume to maximize his chances of landing any job, including one in the video game industry,

–What he needs to have available in addition to the resume to maximize his chances of landing an entry-level spot in the video game industry,

–What you would tell him about the realism of his dream to land a spot in the video game industry, and any alternative career objective at this stage in his career that you would recommend, plus

–Anything else you got….

Make sense?  Pop up Nathan's resume by clicking here, and help the graduate out by hitting him up with your notes in the comments section of this post. 

Kick the graduate/Help the graduate.  Same thing.  Shoot straight and give him the tough love if he needs it… I've got Jason Pankow, who gets paid for talking to enthusiastic kids for XBOX, warming up in the bullpen to come in once everyone else throws their best pitch…