Rich Peterson's Lessons from the Political Campaign Trail

Think your job search is challenging? How would you like to go on 100 interviews a month as other candidates try to discredit you and the media stands ready to report (and continually replay) any mistake or failing to a laughing public?

Next to running for office, a job search is a cake walk. But that doesn't mean you can't learn something from the world of politics. Here are a few lessons you can carry over to your own candidacy:

Lesson # 1: Define Yourself and Your Message

Just as every candidate needs to differentiate himself to survive the primaries, your resume needs to stand out to get you the interview. Target it toward the job description. Read the job description and research the organization. Ask yourself, "If I were the hiring manager, what would I want in a candidate?" Highlight these skills and qualities in the top third of your resume."

Lesson #2: Look the Part!

Image consultants give both Kerry and Bush high marks on their attire and grooming.

They dress slightly better than the dress code and always wear well-tailored, high-quality suits that are:

1.)   Stylish, but not faddish

2.)  Authoritative, but not stuffy.  

As for trendy, you may think that “Disco,” dress looks smart, but only on Saturday night.

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