Archive for February, 2009

Before you update that resume …

As unemployment numbers soar, there’s a lot of nervous talk about job-search strategies. Whether you’re looking for full-time employment or a few new clients to help get you through the next several months, one thing you do NOT want to do is rely on the same old resume you thought was required.

As Seth Godin points out, “a┬áresume is an excuse to reject you. Once you send me your resume, I can say, “oh, they’re missing this or they’re missing that,” and boom, you’re out.”

I wholeheartedly agree that standing out is the best strategy — now more than ever.

Seth recommends three extraordinary letters of recommendation … a project your potential client or employer can see or touch … a blog so compelling and insightful that they have no choice but to follow up.

Ron Leland of Real Life Brand Architecture has been using custom books he creates in iPhoto to show off his portfolio of work. With a handwritten note on the inside cover, these gifts are effective Trojan Horses that make a lasting impression.

That goal is to avoid the ordinary, Seth Godin says. “Great jobs, world class jobs, jobs people kill for… those jobs don’t get filled by people emailing in resumes. Ever.”


Awards matter


Over the years, I’ve been a bit ambivalent about the significance of industry design awards. After all, the true value of our work should be measured by how a stronger brand builds business for our clients, rather than how our work appeals to industry colleagues.

Yet I must admit I’m very proud of the work I did with Ron Leland of Real Life Brand Architecture for one of our fave clients, Jim Dunnigan of Niemann Capital Management. The Service Industry Advertising Awards recently recognized our brand-development efforts with three Gold and two Silver awards for a logo design, website, brochure, calendar and brand launch campaign.

As gratifying as it is to have your hard work recognized, it’s even more important when your client can leverage this recognition internally to build company-wide support and pride in a distinctive brand identity. Awards like these build credibility and confidence. It tells everyone involved that we’re on the right track. That certainly has been the case with Niemann, a relatively small company with a unique message to share in the financial-services industry.

We can do a bang-up job with design and messaging, but a brand cannot be built without true buy-in from the client. And awards can certainly help in that effort.

Robert Hyndman

can be reached at his Laguna Beach studio, 949.497.3179, or by using the form on the Contact Me page.
February 2009
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