I love the Web site resumania.com. "Resumania" is a term to describe errors made by job seekers on resumes, applications, and cover letters. The site encourages visitors to submit resumania items they came across. The examples have come from human resource professionals and businesses worldwide. Although the bloopers are a lot of fun, the purpose of Resumania isn't to disparage the individuals who made them, but to emphasize the importance of professionalism in resume preparation. The examples usually involve faux pas in personal information, attempts at humor, misusing or omitting words, extraneous or inappropriate information, and awkward phrasing. It's proof that it pays to carefully proofread all resumes and cover letters before submitting them to potential employers.
One section of the site that's particularly amusing is the "Shop Talk" section. In it, you see the excuses some employees came up with for being late to work. Resumania surveyed 150 Fortune 1000 executives from around the country, asking them for the most unusual reasons they'd ever heard from tardy workers. Here are some responses:
- "My dog carried away the car keys."
- "The wind was blowing against me."
- "A plane landed on the highway and blocked cars."
- "There was a bear in the street."
- "My favorite actress just got married-I needed time alone."
- "The lead dog for my dogsled died."
- "I thought Monday was Sunday."
- "My best friend stole my car."
- "The engine on the yacht wouldn't start."
- "I felt it was better to sleep in at home versus sleep at the office."
- "My husband's pet spider died, and I had to console him."
- "I was in the process of getting arrested."
- "The dog ate the popcorn on the Christmas tree and got sick."
In doing my own informal survey, I asked my staff partners for their best examples. Outside of the typical "car broke down" excuse, here are some of their best:
- "I couldn't find my telephone cord to call in late."
- "My chickens got out, and my dogs ate them, so I have to clean up the mess"
- "I won't be in today due to having alcohol poisoning."
- "The babysitter is in jail."
- "My tree fell on my neighbor's house."
- "My son fell and got a popcorn kernel stuck in his ear, and I have to take him to the emergency room."
- "I forgot to iron my clothes."
- "I forgot my donuts."
- "My battery is dead on my car, and my parents had to put my license plates on our other car."
- "My pet ferret died, and I have to give it a proper funeral."
- "My neighbor busted my car windshield, and I needed to catch the bus."
- "I'm at my girlfriend's house and can't find my pants."
And, finally, the ever popular:
"I had nothing to wear because my girlfriend got mad at me and burned all of my clothes." IBI