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How Anyone Can Be a Star Candidate and Impress an Employer in 9 Seconds

How Anyone Can Be a Star Candidate and Impress an Employer in 9 Seconds

Have you ever had one of those days where you sat down and wondered why you hadn’t received a call back from that place? Did you ever think about how you didn’t get as many interview calls as your friends and peers? The problem might not be that you are not the right candidate: it could be the ultimate job fetcher, your resume.

New research has shown that you have only less than 9 seconds to grab the a potential employer’s attention.[1] A resume is the employer’s window to a candidate’s profile. Your resume represents you. Sure, it might be just a document with all your key skills and qualifications, but it’s also your identity in that office before they have seen you. Your resume matters as much as your performance in the interview

A talented candidate can get rejected easily with a bad resume.

Let’s just roll with a hypothetical scenario: you are an Engineer from a reputed college who has just completed his graduation. You are looking out for an opportunity. You have a basic resume with some information provided in it and that’s your identity in the companies that you apply in.

Remember that each brand wants to hire the best of the best, leaving no room for doubt.[2] If your resume isn’t up to the mark or presentable, it wouldn’t matter how talented you are, they will just reject you. No second thoughts. Terrifying, eh?

Make your employer fall in love with your resume first.

Ask HR experts out there, they will tell you stories of companies falling in love with resumes and hiring people way out of their requirements. Recently, Microsoft has gone out of its way and appreciated a Teen girl’s effort to impress her crush through an innovative powerpoint. Those things strike a chord amongst employers. Your resume should be like that.

There are multiple approaches you can have while creating a resume: you can create a simple one or a visually heavy simple one and many more. If you are a graphic designer or a creative head or something of that sort, your employer would expect a visual appealing resume that reflects your skills.

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For more technical and clerical jobs, they expect simper resumes as minimal is best. That doesn’t mean you can’t experiment with them, you can and you should, but stick to the basic hygiene and try not to go overboard because that distracts the employers from paying attention to your skills and qualifications.

Good language that’s void of spelling or grammatical errors is obviously required in every resume. If you want to take it a notch higher, we have a short cut for you.

Did you know that there are stunning and free resume templates for word? Here are 9 amazing platforms in which you can download free resume templates in word:

Hloom.com: With over 1000 resume templates for MS Office

    With over 1000 resume templates in their database, you can choose the best that fits your needs. Moreover, they have a resume builder tool to create resume templates specifically curated as per your experience and skill set.

    Resumecompanion.com: Helps you showcase your experience better

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      Resume Companion is yet another exciting place to download free resume templates in word and showcase the experience in more better way.

      Microsoft Featured Word Templates: Basic templates provided by the official MS site

        Templates.office.com is the official platform provided by Microsoft office services. Although these platform has very basic templates to provide, this is still quite a crisp destination to create a decent resume.

        The Muse: With over 200 resume templates for any job aspirants

          It stands out with its variety this particular platform provides you up to 275 templates which is quite a diverse range of resume templates for any job aspirants.

          Resume Genius: With high quality resume samples handpicked by professionals

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            It has a dedicated section for resume sample which are downloadable in word format, but they distinguish themselves from the rest by ensuring higher quality because these samples are handpicked by experts whom they call Resume Genius professionals.

            Freeresumes: With templates that are visually attractive

              Although it has a limited number of templates, it has a very visual centric approach.

              Resume World: With technical-specialized templates

                They specializes on CV templates that are slightly technical. Although this platform is quite user-friendly, it requires Adobe Acrobat Reader to download the templates.

                Template.net: With lots of resume and cover letter samples in Photoshop and Word

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                  This website provides great resume formats in both Photoshop and Word. This will help an aspirant even further is the cover letter templates which are pretty awesome.

                  Resume2017.net: Focuses on chronological resume templates which are loved by HR professionals

                    They focus on chronological resume templates which is apparently quite a hit among job seekers and HR professionals. With only 16 formats, this platform could still help you as its templates are well-researched with a mix of different types of templates.

                    The idea is simple: Create a resume that catches an employer’s attention in the right manner without being distracting. We promise you that a good resume can bring you hundreds of opportunities, unlike a detailed one that doesn’t do much.

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                    More by this author

                    Abhay Jeet Mishra

                    Writer at Lifehack & Enterested.com

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                    Last Updated on July 8, 2020

                    How to Prevent Decision Fatigue From Clouding Your Judgement

                    How to Prevent Decision Fatigue From Clouding Your Judgement

                    What is decision fatigue? Let me explain this with an example:

                    When determining a court ruling, there are many factors that contribute to their final verdict. You probably assume that the judge’s decision is influenced solely by the nature of the crime committed or the particular laws that were broken. While this is completely valid, there is an even greater influential factor that dictates the judge’s decision: the time of day.

                    In 2012, a research team from Columbia University[1] examined 1,112 court rulings set in place by a Parole Board Judge over a 10 month period. The judge would have to determine whether the individuals in question would be released from prison on parole, or a change in the parole terms.

                    While the facts of the case often take precedence in decision making, the judges mental state had an alarming influence on their verdict.

                    As the day goes on, the chance of a favorable ruling drops:

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                      Image source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

                      Does the time of day, or the judges level of hunger really contribute that greatly to their decision making? Yes, it does.

                      The research went on to show that at the start of the day the likelihood of the judging giving out a favorable ruling was somewhere around 65%.

                      But as the morning dragged on, the judge became fatigued and drained from making decision after decision. As more time went on, the odds of receiving a favorable ruling decreased steadily until it was whittled down to zero.

                      However, right after their lunch break, the judge would return to the courtroom feeling refreshed and recharged. Energized by their second wind, their leniency skyrockets back up to a whopping 65%. And again, as the day drags on to its finish, the favorable rulings slowly diminish along with the judge’s spirits.

                      This is no coincidence. According to the carefully recorded research, this was true for all 1,112 cases. The severity of the crime didn’t matter. Whether it was rape, murder, theft, or embezzlement, the criminal was more likely to get a favorable ruling either early in the morning, or after the judges lunch break.

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                      Are You Suffering from Decision Fatigue Too?

                      We all suffer from decision fatigue without even realizing it.

                      Perhaps you aren’t a judge with the fate of an individual’s life at your disposal, but the daily decisions you make for yourself could hinder you if you’re not in the right head-space.

                      Regardless of how energetic you feel (as I imagine it is somehow caffeine induced anyway), you will still experience decision fatigue. Just like every other muscle, your brain gets tired after periods of overuse, pumping out one decision after the next. It needs a chance to rest in order to function at a productive rate.

                      The Detrimental Consequences of Decision Fatigue

                      When you are in a position such as a Judge, you can’t afford to let your mental state dictate your decision making; but it still does. According to George Lowenstein, an American educator and economy expert, decision fatigue is to blame for poor decision making among members of high office. The disastrous level of failure among these individuals to control their impulses could be directly related to their day to day stresses at work and their private life.

                      When you’re just too tired to think, you stop caring. And once you get careless, that’s when you need to worry. Decision fatigue can contribute to a number of issues such as impulse shopping (guilty), poor decision making at work, and poor decision making with after work relationships. You know what I’m talking about. Don’t dip your pen in the company ink.

                      How to Make Decision Effectively

                      Either alter the time of decision making to when your mind is the most fresh, or limit the number of decisions to be made. Try utilizing the following hacks for more effective decision making.

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                      1. Make Your Most Important Decisions within the First 3 Hours

                      You want to make decisions at your peak performance, so either first thing in the morning, or right after a break.

                      Research has actually shown that you are the most productive for the first 3 hours[2] of your day. Utilize this time! Don’t waste it on trivial decisions such as what to wear, or mindlessly scrolling through social media.

                      Instead, use this time to tweak your game plan. What do you want to accomplish? What can you improve? What steps do you need to take to reach these goals?

                      2. Form Habits to Reduce Decision Making

                      You don’t have to choose all the time.

                      Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but it doesn’t have to be an extravagant spread every morning. Make a habit out of eating a similar or quick breakfast, and cut that step of your morning out of the way. Can’t decide what to wear? Pick the first thing that catches your eye. We both know that after 20 minutes of changing outfits you’ll just go with the first thing anyway.

                      Powerful individuals such as Steve Jobs, Barack Obama, and Mark Zuckerberg don’t waste their precious time deciding what to wear. In fact, they have been known to limiting their outfits down to two options in order to reduce their daily decision making.

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                      3. Take Frequent Breaks for a Clearer Mind

                      You are at your peak of productivity after a break, so to reap the benefits, you need to take lots of breaks! I know, what a sacrifice. If judges make better decisions in the morning and after their lunch break, then so will you.

                      The reason for this is because the belly is now full, and the hunger is gone. Roy Baumeister, Florida State University social psychologist[3] had found that low-glucose levels take a negative toll on decision making. By taking a break to replenish your glucose levels, you will be able to focus better and improve your decision making abilities.

                      Even if you aren’t hungry, little breaks are still necessary to let your mind refresh, and come back being able to think more clearly.

                      Structure your break times. Decide beforehand when you will take breaks, and eat energy sustaining snacks so that your energy level doesn’t drop too low. The time you “lose” during your breaks will be made up in the end, as your productivity will increase after each break.

                      So instead of slogging through your day, letting your mind deteriorate and fall victim to the daily abuses of decision making, take a break, eat a snack. Let your mind refresh and reset, and jump-start your productivity throughout the day.

                      More Tips About Decision Making

                      Featured photo credit: Kelly Sikkema via unsplash.com

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