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If a qualified job reference AKA working certificate is required to be handed in with your resume, and it's sub-par, how would you deal with that situation?

Office Hours #1: Resume Writing with Judy Park [41:10]

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#resume #resume-building #job-applications #work-certificate #references

Thank you comment icon Judy Park's answer: If your certificate isn't as strong as what they're asking for, still put it in if it's required. If you don't, you can still drop your name in the hat - it's a free country! - but know that you might not be qualified for the role. Oftentimes if something is listed as required, the application will be automatically disqualified if it doesn't have that. You could probably explain that you plan to pursue a stronger certificate (for example) in the cover letter. Just do your best to adhere to the requirements laid out in the job desscription. CareerVillage Office Hours

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Tricia’s Answer

This is a great question, because we all know that we are much more than the papers we submit when job hunting. Is there a good reason for the sub-par rating? Were there extenuating circumstances? More importantly, did you learn from the experience? I believe that most employers would be looking at the complete package, and if you have an opportunity to explain (not excuse) the rating and the very concrete steps you have taken to ensure that it is an anomaly and not indicative of your ability to perform in the future, you will have done the hard work to change it going forward. But make sure you have done the work, learned from your experience, and are ready to apply that learning to a new position. And in the meantime, take the initiative to learn more, expand your skills, and bring even more to a new employer
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Lila’s Answer

I Agree with Tricia's answer, if you are able to fine the opportunities for growth in your sub-par rating, then I would highlight that and lean in there. It may feel like that initial job is the end all be all, but if you can also gain experience by working in a job that is not directly what you are looking for, you can show strong work ethic, show work experience and outshine the sub-par rating. What I mean is, if you can add to your resume to show you work hard in other areas, and build it out so the rating is not the only thing we are looking at it will help ease the conversation a bit.

I'd also like to add that any work experience in any fashion can be leveraged to show you are capable of the job. If for some reason your work experience is say at a coffee shop, but you are looking into getting into the Sales Org world, you can spin that coffee shop job experience in your favor by highlighting things you learns like customers experience, organization, team moral, project manage etc. If you can lean on other areas that you have shined, highlight those, and then provide some growth/learnings from a sub-par rating. It doesn't have to be your only talking point.
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