You Can Do That Too? More Blatant Self-Promotion

Never fails, at least once a month, someone is surprised by something I can do that involves writing, editing, project management, page layout and design. Never fails. I don’t mind. I had an inkling that having a Professional Technical Communications (yes the s is important) degree would be difficult to describe to others when professors could not describe the degree to me in a few sentences. Instead some opted for a list of skills and talents and others sought to find a way to make the degree relatable to me directly, such as “what do you write?”

“roleplaying and board games.”

“oh. Anything else?”

“Working on a cookbook.”

“Ah. That is a technical document and you will learn how to make your cookbook the best it can be.”

I understood early on that professors were concerned with ensuring students had marketable skills, meaning technical documents. What is a technical document? Typically a document used in a business environment. What does that mean? Well if a business is using a document, anything from an email to sales brochures to instructional manuals to interoffice paperwork to…let me put it this way, if there is a written work, my skill set allows me to:

  • make it read better
  • make the message clearer, whatever the message from a simple request for a pencil sharpener to a series of complex instructions
  • make it look better

Each of those three things has titles, often multiple titles, such as editor, layout and design, typographer, and so on. In essence my degree gave me a large range of skills that I could market anyway I choose and then some. My resume, if I chose too make a new one, would essentially be a representation of my entire skill set AND a list of all of the skills I possessed that a reader might not recognize by looking at the document. See why having a Professional Technical Communications degree is so hard to describe and why people are surprised by what I can do to any written communication. Oh wait, add verbal to that because of a good friend, Paul Zube, I have a good range of verbal skills (lots of communication courses) and research skills.

See why I am not surprised by other peoples surprise at what I can do? I find the surprise amusing. If I have a difficult time describing what I can do, how can possibly expect other people to remember or know? I can’t. Thus, I find myself recounting the skills I have over and over again, in a good way.

When someone asks me if I will look at something as simple as an email, I send them back a revised email, I can’t help it.

When someone asked me to look at their collection of erotica, I gave them my professional opinion.

When a writer friend mentioned that their editor didn’t understand them and their layout person was constantly demanding written work to layout, I explained how an editor and layout professional should work with them and then offered my services.

I like my degree, even I can’t elevator pitch to anyone.



Blatant Self-Promotion: Creatively Telling Your Story

Tired of your job?

So am I.

Need change?

Yes you do.

Want to make yourself look better on paper?

I can do that.

What is a resume?

WRONG! A resume is a single page short story about you.

What is a CV (Curriculum Vitae)?

Close, but WRONG! A CV is a novella about you.

Most resumes and CVs read like textbooks. Are you a textbook full of facts? NO! Sure, facts-and-figures are pieces of your story, but they are not YOU! You are more than where you worked, where you studied, and the things you have done; your resume and CV should better represent you. Let your resume or CV do a lot of the work of getting you a new job.

How do you do that? Let me ask you another question, who better to tell the story of you than a storyteller, a writer?

That is correct. Nobody is better. That is not true either. A storyteller with training, with the skills, and the desire to tell your story is better and I am that writer, that storyteller.

Your story is not my story. Thus, your story will not fit into my template. I will craft a template just for you and your story, highlighting the parts of you that best fit the job you are going after. The job that you deserve.

Do you need some examples of why this storyteller is perfect for you? Yes, you do…

Instead of cashier, you are an essential cog in the financial machine of the United States of America (patriotic) or a redistributor of wealth or effortlessly handle customer and their money or a skilled up seller.

Everyone has people skills, but what are people skills…how about the world is your chessboard and people are your pieces or you read people like a book or you understand what a customer needs and wants before the customer does and can get them to purchase both.

Manager? Everyone is a manager or managerial skills. What are you a manager of…the best interests of the company or bottom line or keeping all of the ducks in a row and swimming in the right direction or putting out customer or worker (associate) fires or ensuring MAXIMUM efficiency or reducing waste.

Communication skills or great (excellent) communicator, great. How? When you speak people listen or you have the oratory skills and command of JFK (or other excellent historical orator) or be prepared to stay up all night reading your writing or you listen before responding.

You got skills? Awesome. Guess what everyone else has skills and their list looks and reads a lot like yours. Change that list up. Stop looking up buzzwords. Trust me if you found your resume or CV on the internet so did EVERYONE else. Who gets the job? Those who stand out. Let me, for a fee, assist you in standing out by crafting a story of you that they WANT TO READ.

Blatant Self-Promotion: Resume and CV Service

I made a promise to myself upon graduation that I would do more to promote my skills and services. I managed to “avoid” that promise for the last six months. I knew about the promise, but something always got in the way of making a formal self-pitch. Thankfully, things are out of the way for now and I can address my self-promise.

Are you in need a resume or CV (curriculum vitae)?

  • A resume is a one page presentation of your attributes, skills, and talents applicable to the job you are applying for. Resumes are to the point, designed to present you in the best light at a quick glance or short read.
  • A CV is a multipage presentation of attributes, skills, and talents you possess. CV’s allow you to present more information, even detailed information, to readers. CV’s give employers a better sense of who you are and what you offer.

Everyone should have a resume, preferably more than one-different resumes for different types of jobs-that are updated regularly.

Are you looking for advice and/or suggestions for an existing resume or CV?

Resumes and CVs should be updated regularly both in content and style. Even if you have all of the right information, if the presentation is boring, the same as everyone else’s, or hard to read your resume will end up in the other pile.

Are you stuck in the middle of crafting a resume or CV?

Deciding what information to include or not to include is tough, especially when there is so much conflicting information. I can offer suggestions on information to include or not or a new way to look at your existing information.

Would you like a second opinion?

You have crafted your own resume or CV, but are unsure of the resume or CV’s presentation, get a second opinion.

If you answered yes to any of those questions, I can provide assistance. I have been assisting family, friends, and classmates with their resumes and CVs for the past five years. Practical experience, combined with a Professional Technical Communications degree gives me the skills, talents, and abilities to assist you to craft a resume or CV for the job you are seeking.

The specifics:

  • I do not use templates, each resume is crafted for the individual, their information, and where possible the job. For a fun and creative take on resumes see here (these were designed for an assignment).
  • I charge by the $15 per hour.
  • After looking over your material (for example skills, talents, work history, and school history) I will give you an estimated time to complete, so you have a rough idea how much the bill will be. I keep diligent records of time worked.
  • I can assist crafting cover letters.
  • If you are concerned about personal information such as phone number, etc. all, I can create a placeholder for you to insert your own information when you receive the resume or CV.
  • For a resume: I will need from you as much information as you can provide with a focus on the type of job applying for, work history, education history, and skills and talents relevant to the job. I do not need references unless you want me to craft a reference page.
  • For a CV: I will need any all information you feel you want to give to a potential employer.
  • Important: Regardless of resume or CV, the more information you provide to me the less I have to ask you questions or craft a resume or CV that does not fit your needs. More is better.

If you are interested, send an email to subject: Resume/CV with your questions or information.