It’s Time They Learn That It’s Harder to Write a Little Than a Lot

I used to benchmark the crappy economy by the number of times people referenced “in this economy” (ITE)

But I’m hearing this phrase a lot less these days, and everyone seems to be feeling an increased sense of consumer confidence. But a recent hiring experience made me realize that maybe the economy’s not growing as fast as we want to think it is.

One of my clients, a contractor, is getting busy again, thank the dear Lord

When we began working together, we had a marketing plan with three line items that included updating his website, a newsletter and a social media. We are now up to 40+ projects, and we’re hiring a part-time marketing/office assistant.

It’s harder to write a little than a lot

I put an ad on Craigslist

I wasn’t expecting much of a response, and boy, was I wrong. I received more than 40 resumes for a position that is a great opportunity to learn and grow for a marketing student or recent graduate, but includes some very fundamental grass-roots activity–and yes, some general office work–i.e., filing, phones, etc. Marketing is not all bells and whistles—it can be excruciatingly tedious.

Their skillsets were all over the board

Some of these people had Masters Degrees, for crying out loud, a few could barely write a sentence, others apparently weren’t sure if they wanted to work because they couldn’t generate any enthusiasm for the job. One spanking new college grad envisioned her job as that of project manager in charge of resource allocation (we have no resources to allocate) and wanted to work 30 hours/week @ $40/hour. Not going to happen.

Some observations

  • A 5-page resume from a 22-year old is just plain hooey.
  • Masters of spin—these kids turn a barista job into a career in relationship management.
  • Long, boring cover letters might at least address the job description.
  • Rethink cover letters that are separate files so you have to open two attachments.

My number one beef? TMI

This is a hard lesson to learn, but it’s infinitely more difficult to write a little than a lot. These kids are going to have to learn to summarize their thoughts into concise statements and crisp bullet points. Economical messaging and making information visually accessible are critical to successful information delivery.

Ask us about 10 Ways for Making SocMedia Part of Mrktg Strategy (pdf)

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