5 ways to make a good first impression on the editor

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Are you looking for a copy editor’s job? Check out our tips on how to prepare your e-mail and resume to get the editor’s attention.

Are you looking for a copy editor’s job? Check out our tips on how to prepare your e-mail and resume to get the editor’s attention.

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  • 1. th<br />5 Ways to Make a Good First Impression on the Editor<br />By Mala Bhargava<br />If anyone’s sensitive about gaffs in a résumé, it would have to be an editor. If you’re after that copy editor’s job, here are some tips to get it right from the start. <br /> <br />1<br />Don’t skip the polite bits<br />Impressions are created the very minute the editor sees your e-mail. You may believe that a recipient’s entire attention will be on the résumé and that anything else goes unnoticed. Not so. <br />Skipping the salutation and sign-off may be common practice, but it still looks rude to the recipient of the mail. While you don’t have to write a stiff-sounding ‘To whomsoever it may concern,’ a simple general greeting will do if you don’t know the recipient’s name. You can end with a ‘Regards’ or something similar. <br />2<br />Don’t just attach<br />What you say in the message area also matters, even though job seekers often think no one really reads this. Start with a specific subject line. In the mail, lines like ‘Please see the same,’ or ‘See attached,’ or even ‘Please do the needful,’ make editors cringe. So do old world lines such as ‘Please give me a chance to work with your esteemed organization,’ or ‘This is for your kind perusal.’ <br />Avoid officialese and use smart language instead. E-mail and other documents have a body language of their own and reveal a lot about the sender. Sending a blank mail with just the résumé attached tells the recipient that you didn’t take even the most minimal trouble over the application. <br />3<br />Don’t miss the chance<br />The message that can accompany your résumé is an opportunity you shouldn’t miss. Put in a line or two about yourself and what you hope to do in your career. Show your grasp over the language for the few moments you have the recipient’s attention. This will predispose the editor to view your case more positively. <br />Recruiters often quickly have to go through hundreds of applications. Anyone who has written a few impressive lines obviously stands a better chance of getting the job while others are filtered out in the first round. <br />4Don’t forget to work on your résumé <br />Everyone knows it’s important, and yet, many don’t proofread their résumés. Go over yours a few times to make sure you haven’t made grammatical or other errors. Check for unnecessary changes in pronoun reference, wrongly used apostrophe, dangling modifiers and other common problems. <br />It is résumé-fashion to put in an ‘Objective’ at the beginning of the document. But the lofty statements about wanting to contribute to one’s best ability for the growth of the organization have become so abysmally clichéd as to be meaningless. Put in an honest statement about why you want the specific job for which you are applying. <br />5<br />Just tell it like it is<br />Never try to pad your résumé with more words than are really working. Remember, if anyone can spot an attempt to inflate, it’s an editor. Make sure all the important information leaps out. Contrary to popular belief, editors and others like to-the-point résumés and are not necessarily impressed with a document running into many pages. <br />List your achievements and see what you can do to back them up with facts. Also, be prepared to talk about your achievements at the interview and be sure not to put anything that turns out too minor to talk about. <br /> <br />Mala Bhargava is a media professional who has trained many journalists in copydesk skills. She is Editorial Director at Mindworks Global. <br />Follow @mindworksjobs and @mindworksglobal on Twitter<br />Visit us at http://mindworksglobal.com<br />