A friend distributed my awful resume. Now what?
July 28, 2010 8:34 AM   Subscribe

I sent a possibly-horrible resume to an influential friend, who graciously passed it along. What do I do?

I've been job hunting for many months. An acquaintance of mine (we'll call her The Passer) -- offered, actually, insisted that I give her my resume so she could pass it on to her friend (The Receiver). The Receiver is an executive at a company I would love to work for and which has an opening (though not in The Receiver's division). I am not a slam-dunk candidate. I am in the midst of a career change and it's been hard to get a foot in the door of the new (related) field (trying to go from journalism to P.R.).

The Passer passed it on. I sent her an appropriate thank you and she replied that it was her pleasure, it was easy, no problemo, etc...

A few days later someone else asked about my resume and I sent it to him. He's a friend, and called me back. "You might want to do some editing," he said. Sure enough, I looked at my resume and saw it with fresh eyes. I had made so many tweaks and changes that it now looked bloated an inconsistent. There were repeated phrases underneath the same job title. There was inconsistent punctuation (some bullet points ended in a period, some didn't).

Now I'm noticing I haven't heard a word from The Receiver, and The Passer noticeably didn't ask me if I've heard anything the last time I saw her.

Should I just chalk this one up as a loss? Is there any saving this situation? Did I make The Passer look bad?

Oh, am I overreacting because I am losing my mind because I've been hunting for a full-time job for over a year? That's possible too...Thanks.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (7 answers total)
Rather than chock it up as a loss, email the Passer and say you -- the horror! -- mistakenly sent a draft version of the resume. Attach the real one, and apologize profusely.
posted by nitsuj at 8:38 AM on July 28, 2010 [9 favorites]

you should resend it with an apologetic but brief note that you sent the wrong version. at this point, what have you got to lose?

my friend just told me that the resume he'd been sending out for three years, whisch his wife laid out in indesign, didn't have the fonts properly packaged. everyone who opened it just saw gobbeldygook. he only found out because his contact at his dream organization said something. he resent to his Passer, who resent to his Receiver. he starts the new job next monday.
posted by peachfuzz at 8:45 AM on July 28, 2010 [3 favorites]

Everyone has crappy resume drafts sitting around. I agree; send a new one and explain that you attached the wrong draft. Then follow up in a week or so by trying to finagle a coffee meeting with the receiver to discuss the industry or get advice or however you want to frame it. An in-person meeting is likelier to score you a job than a resume anyway.
posted by pseudostrabismus at 8:56 AM on July 28, 2010 [1 favorite]

agree with the above...it'll show that you take responsibility for mistakes AND are willing to correct them. good qualities in an employee.
posted by UltraD at 10:16 AM on July 28, 2010

Go get it professionally edited first. (I noticed you have an extra hyphen there in this post...not to nitpick, but ya know!)
posted by yarly at 3:56 PM on July 28, 2010

Get a few more people to give you resume advice first. You wouldn't want this same scenario to happen in another week when a different friend mentions some potential edits.
posted by cheesecake at 7:15 PM on July 28, 2010

You got something useful out of this process, namely, a good suggestion for resume edits by a person who has probably seen a lot of resumes in the past. It is very, very unlikely you are going to get anything more out of this. Be grateful for the benefits you have gotten (few people get to have their resume evaluated by such a critical eye) and keep on looking. Don't worry about making the Passer look bad, but you have almost certainly been passed on by the receiver. And for goodness sake, don't email a new draft of the resume to the Passer, unless you think she has other contacts that she might not have exercised yet.
posted by ch1x0r at 7:30 PM on July 28, 2010

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