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My Top 3 Organization Tips
My sister-in-law (Hey Marianne!) asked me what my top 3 organization tips are this summer and I’ve been thinking a lot about it. There are a lot of “productivity gurus” out there in the world, and some of them have better advice than others, but because I spend so much time reading and contemplating this kind of stuff, I thought I might have something valuable to share. I thought about labelling this as “Top 3 Life Organization Tips” or “Top 3 Home Organization Tips” but I decided to challenge myself and choose the absolute best tips overall.

Here's a random picture of some cute "organizational tools"

1. The 2-Minute Rule

If you’ve ever asked me for organizational help, I’ve probably told you about the 2-minute rule. This is a principle from David Allen’s book Getting Things Done, which is kind of like the bible of organization/productivity. Allen says that if a task will take you 2 minutes or less, you should do it RIGHT NOW, because the time it takes you to create a reminder for the task and then actually remember to do it is probably more than 2 minutes. I’ve expanded this rule to 5 minutes and it is a life-saver. Have a 5 minute phone call you need to make? Do it now. Need to send an email? Do it now. Don’t bother putting it on your to-do list, JUST DO IT. 

2. Inbox-ing

This is another David Allen idea that I have fallen in love with. This trick is based on the idea of an email inbox. “Stuff” comes into your inbox. Some stuff is tasks, some is events, some is random ideas, and some is just junk. Your email collects this “stuff’, and you go through your email and decide what action needs to be taken. Once an email is dealt with, it no longer lives in your inbox. I know not everyone organizes their email this way--even though you should!--but the principle is this: An inbox just collects stuff temporarily, and you go through it regularly and clean it out. I have 2 inboxes. I’ll tell you how I use them and how they help me stay organized. 

physical inbox
One is a physical box (it’s actually a basket) on my dresser that says, “Reb’s Inbox.” Think of it as a pile of “Things to Go Through.” Stuff that I don’t immediately know what to do with goes in that basket. I try to go through the basket every week, although sometimes I get lazy and only look at it once a month. David Allen recommends clearing out your inbox every day. Here’s how I do it: I pick up the first thing in the inbox, decide what to do with it, and I don’t put it down until it has a home or I decide to throw it away. Then I move on to the next thing. If it’s a quote from church that I want to save, I put it in my filing cabinet. If it’s a receipt, I usually toss it in the trash. Sometimes I write ideas on blank pieces of paper and toss them in my inbox, because I want to deal with them at some point, but they’re not urgent. Then when I go through my inbox, I look at the piece of paper and decide what to do with that idea. If it’s something I want to do immediately, I put it on my to-do list. If it’s something I want to do in the future but not right now, I put it on a Google Doc. You get the idea. When you don’t have an inbox, your brain is always busy remembering things instead of being free to think creatively or problem solve. You’ll be surprised how much headspace you have when you know that all those miscellaneous tasks/ideas are captured somewhere, AND when you know that they’ll be dealt with in a timely manner. It also helps with clutter at home.

notebook inbox
The other inbox I have is in my notebook. Every day, I turn to a new page and title it “Inbox.” This is the list version of the basket I keep at home. Ideas, thoughts, notes, and other random tasks get listed here. Anything that’s on my mind, big or small, gets on this page. I can then transfer necessary things to my daily to-do list, put events on my calendar, and sometimes I even rip out this page and put it in my basket at home, to be dealt with like other physical items. The principle for both inboxes is the same, I just don’t want to bring a big basket around with me all day to put my things in.

3. Don’t Put To-Do’s on Your Calendar

First things first: You HAVE to have a calendar. You can’t rely on random sticky notes, text messages, or other people to tell you where you need to be and when. Take 100% responsibility for your life and get a calendar. I enjoyed using a paper calendar/planner for many years, but I switched to Google calendar to better manage my schedule with my husband’s schedule, and it has worked really well for me. You can use whatever is easier for you. Once you have a calendar that you like, it’s VITAL that you use it as a hard landscape for your time. You need to know when you’re available and when you’re not. It’s all about trusting the system. If you have To-Dos on your calendar instead of just events, you won’t be able to tell when you’re really free. Listing negotiable items like “do laundry” on your calendar instead of a To-Do list means that sometimes the things on your calendar aren’t really happening and that makes it easy to ignore other appointments. Then the whole system breaks down. You need to know that when you look at your calendar, the time that’s blocked off is really blocked off. This principle has honestly changed my life because I can schedule appointments with total confidence. I never worry that I’m double booking myself or that I’m going to forget something, because I know that all my necessary appointments/meetings/events/etc are captured on my calendar.

I think it’s appropriate to put “Reminders” on your calendar, but I think that only really works if you use something like Google calendar where you can turn off the reminders when you’re looking at your schedule. 

I hope this is helpful! Here’s a cutesy graphic I made with shortened versions of all these tips.



Rebecca
Things I Have Organized in 2017

I’ve been on a major organization kick lately. I made a goal to improve my physical environment this year, and to me that meant cleaning and organizing literally everything. It’s been a huge project because (a) I’m already pretty organized and (b) because I have REALLY limited space and A LOT of stuff. So with that introduction, here’s a list of all the things I organized in 2017!

THE BATHROOM

Our bathroom is teeny tiny with absolutely no storage. We don’t even have space around the sink to balance my hair straightener. I have to put it on the toilet seat while I do my hair. My goal was to organize everything without making it hard to access anything.

bathroom-organization-1

I bought these white baskets from Target that fit perfectly on the shelf above the toilet. There’s a big one beneath the sink for toilet paper, but I forgot to get a picture of it.

bathroom-organization-1

I found a cute hack on Pinterest for storing my makeup brushes. You put rocks in the bottom of a jar so that the brushes stand up on their own. It has actually helped a lot!

bathroom-organization-2

Next . . . UNDER THE SINK

If you follow me on Instagram, you probably saw me organize this space in real time. It was a little overwhelming because there was SOOOOO much stuff, but I found an awesome tutorial that inspired me to get started. I bought the silver stands/baskets from Amazon and I think they were worth every penny! I love how neat and clean everything is.

under-the-sink-organization-1
under-the-sink-organization-2

In my dream world, all of these cleaning supplies would be color-coordinated, like the tutorial. Haha my husband tells me I’m a nut, but I don’t mind!

under-the-sink-organization-3

THE REFRIGERATOR

Can I just say that cleaning out the fridge is so gross? I feel like I’ve been pretty good about wiping it down every once in a while, but it was still filthy!

fridge-organization-1

I used the same baskets from Target (I’m kind of obsessed, if you couldn’t tell) and I tried to keep it simple. There’s one for cans and leftovers, one for produce, one for cheese and bread, and one for miscellaneous items.

fridge-organization-2
fridge-organization-3

I haven’t figured out what to put in the actual produce drawers. We were kind of low on food when I did this, which honestly made it a lot easier to organize!

STORAGE BINS

I don’t know what to call this project. We have a built-in bookshelf in our living room with open space underneath that I use for storing big stuff. I have one bin for Christmas decorations, one for sheets and linens, one for extra bags/luggage, and one for creative tools, like my laminator and glue gun.

I cleaned out every bin, threw stuff away, and reorganized everything to fit better.

storage-organization-1

Along with these bins, I organized the bin (I refuse to call them tupperwares) with all my harp music. Which led me to organizing . . .

storage-organization-2

MY MUSIC

Dun dun dun! This was the most difficult organization task BY FAR. I had binders and books and random copies of music all over the place. They were organized at one time in my life, but not now. Nothing was labeled correctly, all of the sheet protectors were falling apart, it was terrible.

music-organization-1

I took everything out, recorded the song titles, composers, and parts (solo, duet, what instruments, etc) and then put them in fresh, new sheet protectors in alphabetical order. I’m honestly so proud of this. I have one binder with Christmas music, and one binder of everything else. Everything is labeled and I have a massive table of contents so I know exactly what each binder contains.

music-organization-3

 

If you have a lot of music, I highly recommend doing this! It has made me eager to practice again and it also helped me feel accomplished because I have so many beautiful songs in my repertoire.

music-organization

Well, there you have it, folks! Everything I have organized (so far) in 2017. Because I’ve tried to tackle one project every weekend, I feel like my house has stayed a lot cleaner and feels more open and inviting. Here’s what’s left for me to do:

  • Under the bed
  • The cupboards
  • Shelf in the closet

I feel like organizing those spaces won’t be too bad because they’re not food/bathroom areas. I’m excited to see how happy and organized my apartment feels after going through everything and making it new again!

Thanks for reading,

Rebecca

Everything I Know About Goal-Setting

If you're like me, you are probably looking forward to the new year as an opportunity to evaluate your life and make some new goals. I love thinking about my goals and what I want to accomplish. I don't think it's really necessary to write an in-depth article about setting goals because there's already so much good information out there. I believe one of the best ways to learn is by finding good role models and following them. 

A great guide to setting goals that actually motivate you to achieve them! (Photo courtesy of Rekita Nicole)

A great guide to setting goals that actually motivate you to achieve them! (Photo courtesy of Rekita Nicole)

These are my favorite goal-setting role models and resources:

1. Zen Habits A Simple Guide to Setting and Achieving Your Life Goals http://zenhabits.net/a-simple-guide-to-setting-and-achieving-your-life-goals/
2. Harvard Business Review Making Your Work Resolutions Stick https://hbr.org/2014/12/make-your-work-resolutions-stick
3. The Happy Manager Elementary Goal Setting - Make It Up and Make it Happen!  http://www.the-happy-manager.com/articles/elementary-goal-setting/
4. Stephen R. Covey Start Small with Goal Setting http://www.stephencovey.com/blog/?cat=46

Here's a copy of Stephen R. Covey's instructions from several years ago.


Start Small with Your Resolutions for 2010
The start of a New Year is always special. There is a feeling of renewal as we look to a new year, a new beginning and there is a sense of excitement for making changes or adopting new habits. However, do you ever find yourself making New Year’s resolutions only to abandon them? If you do, you are not alone.
 I want you to be successful at one goal, only one goal this year—and that is accomplishing one small goal you know you can accomplish. I say start small so you can build the confidence and strength to do more. It’s all about taking what I call “baby steps.” Start small, keep at it, and stay consistent until you’re ready pick up the pace.
 I also suggest that you work on your goal on a weekly basis. For instance, if you are setting a goal to reduce your sugar intake, set a goal to reduce the number of sugar-rich drinks you consume during the week. If you are in the habit of drinking soda pop everyday or several times a week, decide at the beginning of the week how many drinks you will reduce in your diet. If you go too fast and eliminate all your drinks, you may just fail at it because you are not emotionally, mentally or physically prepared to do so. So start small. Make a promise and keep it…make a promise and keep it. And soon you will enlarge your strength, confidence and capabilities to discipline yourself to achieve other goals.
 Many years ago, I went on a sugar fast with a group of students. You can’t believe how difficult it was at first but as we achieved small victories, our will power and passion for achieving our goal became stronger and stronger. We actually found strength in saying “no” to sugar because we felt an inner strength, a strength that inspired us to grow our confidence and abilities to grow our character, our sense of who we wanted to be.
 As you set your small goal, you may want to enlist the help of someone close to you. It’s important to have some support, encouragement and a system of accountability. You might even invite this person to set a small goal that you can encourage them on. Work together and create synergy to help each other.
 I wish you well on your journey in 2010. You have the potential for greatness in you! Go for it! Start small. Make a promise and keep it.

I love that. I like hearing from Stephen R. Covey and other people who really know how to achieve their goals. These people accomplish major things and they all recommend the same stuff:

  • Set short-term and long-term goals
  • Make little, tiny "baby steps" to help you reach your goals
  • Set goals based on your priorities
  • Set less goals - 1 or 2 at a time, MAX
  • Work on your goals weekly
  • Conduct weekly reviews to evaluate your progress
  • Tell people about your goals - be accountable
  • Reward yourself for every milestone you reach
  • Take time to relax and rejuvenate
  • If you get off track, get right back on!

So, if you're ready to set some goals, here's what you do:

  1. Get out a real pen and a real piece of paper.
  2. Write down everything you accomplished in the last year, big and small.
  3. Write down everything you would like to accomplish in the next year, big and small.
  4. Write down one goal you would like to focus on right now.
  5. Write down one thing you can do this week to get you closer to that goal.
  6. Share your goal with someone and ask them to hold you accountable.

I'll be sharing my own goals here next week!

How To Create a Graphic Design Portfolio for Entry-level Jobs
 

My younger brother is applying for his first college job. He is really comfortable with design software, but his portfolio is pretty lacking. He reached out to me for help, and I thought it might be worthwhile to share this advice with my blog readers as well.

The first time I made my graphic design "portfolio" (I’m using quotation marks because it wasn't even a real portfolio, looking back on it), I had NO idea what I was doing. There are so many things that seem common sense to me now, but they were really hard for me to figure out and I wish someone had just told me that you shouldn't put your portfolio in a Lisa Frank™ binder ! Let me be your guide in creating a graphic design portfolio that really works. Don't make the same mistakes I did.

RPS_Graphic-Design-Portfolio_Blog_Images_Graphic-Design-Portfolio_Desk_Glasses.png


Good: Printing your portfolio at home and putting it in a binder.

Better: Sending your portfolio to a professional printer and having it bound.

Best: Creating a digital PDF or website for your portfolio that you can send in an email.

When I got my first job as a graphic designer at Brigham Young University, I really didn't have a great design portfolio. I had created posters and invitations for family and friends, but I really didn't have any "name brand" clients, because I had never really been paid for my work. That's OK. Even the most basic portfolio can show your style, organization, and most importantly, your potential.

 

Design Essentials: How To Create a Graphic Design Portfolio
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Design Essentials: How To Create a Graphic Design Portfolio
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Self-Paced Digital Course designed to help you create or refine your graphic design portfolio | PRODUCT INCLUDES: 10-page PDF planner to guide you step-by-step through finding your best work and showcasing it, 6-page PDF and Illustrator portfolio template designed for drag and drop | Digital download available instantly

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CREATING YOUR PORTFOLIO

You may have already done a lot of the grunt work in finding your old work and organizing it, but I just wanted to explain how I put together my portfolio in case that’s all new to you. (I initially told my brother to put his portfolio on a website and I still think that's a great idea, but for now, I would just make a PDF and get it out there!)

Read on:

1. COLLECT
Collect all the design work you've ever done.

T-shirts, posters, binder covers, invitations, logos, ANYTHING. Don't be picky. Even drawings, sketches, and unfinished projects can be valuable. If you have digital work like photography, videography, or video editing, I would definitely include that. Go through your old files and folders it all and lay it out. (If all your files are digital, I would even suggest putting each project on a different page and printing them all. Something magical happens when you can hold your work in your own hands.)

2. ORGANIZE
Organize your projects by category.

Put each project into a category. You might have, "Branding" for logo designs, "Print work" for posters and invitations, and "Apparel" for t-shirts. Seeing the different categories (and how much is in each category) gives you a good idea of what your strengths and weaknesses are.

3. SELECT
Select your best work to showcase.

I know when you don't have a lot of work, it can be scary to take something out. But the truth is, you are better off to have 3 good pieces than to have 10 mediocre pieces. And you're better off having 3 mediocre pieces than 10 terrible pieces! (3-5 is probably a solid number for beginning portfolios). If you really don't have enough work in your portfolio, look at step 4.

4. CREATE
If you have time, make something new.

I hesitate to add this suggestion because if you're reading this blog post, you're the type of person who wants to have an amazing portfolio right off the bat. I have been But the fact is, if you haven't have a paying job as a designer of some sort, you're not going to have 100% top quality professional work. That's OK. This portfolio is just the vehicle to getting you a job. It will grow and evolve over time. So don't worry too much about adding new pieces if you're just trying to get your work out the door and into the hands of an employer.

However, if you DO have the time, it would definitely be to your benefit to make something new. Choose the category of your portfolio that is most lacking and make something. Get online, get on Pinterest, do some research, find something interesting and copy it. (Don't copy it exactly, obviously. Just find something to inspire you and make your own version of it.)

5. WRITE IT OUT
Put it all together.

This is the part of a creative portfolio that most people miss, and this is what will get you hired! Once you have your projects organized by category, you’re going to do a little writing. Each project needs a title and a short explanation. You want to demonstrate your ability to understand a brand and solve problems with design. One way to do this is to imagine that you’re explaining each project to your mom, or someone who doesn’t know a lot about graphic design.

Here’s an Example:

(Title) The Younique Foundation Cookbook
(Description) I created this 50 page e-book for The Younique Foundation retreat participants based on custom recipes provided to me by the 5-Star Culinary Team. I was responsible for the design, layout, photography selection, and publishing of the book.

I created an example below that I hope will help.

RPS_Graphic-Design-Portfolio_Blog_Images_Graphic-Design-Portfolio_Page_Example.png

Tip: If you are the kind of person who doodles or sketches things out, I would absolutely include a section in the back called "The Creative Process" or something cheesy like that. People LOVE to see how your ideas went from your brain to your pencil to your portfolio. Plus, it's a great way to add some bulk to your portfolio without having to polish a whole project.

6. FORMAT
Set up your digital file

This is probably the part you are wondering about the most. Some jobs will let you upload your portfolio online the same way you upload your resume. If this is the case, you will want to have a digital/electronic portfolio, AKA a PDF file.

When I have all my projects collected, organized by category, and displayed on a page with their description, I count them off, and then I make an Adobe Illustrator document with that many pages, plus one for the cover, one for the table of contents, and one for the back. So if I have ten projects, I would make an Illustrator document with 13 pages. Then I just place each of my projects on a separate page.

I honestly don't know why this is a thing, but professional designers ALWAYS put their portfolio on 11x17 pages in the landscape (hamburger) orientation. It might not make very much sense but trust me, if you put your portfolio on an 8x11 portrait page, you are going to look like a total rookie. Once your portfolio is all together, you just save as a PDF and Voila! You're done!

Tip: If you're uploading or emailing your resume, you'll want it to be a reasonable size, somewhere around 10mb. That can be hard to do when you have so many pictures and high resolution files, so if your file is just huge, just google "compress pdf file size" and there are a million online services that will shrink your pdf without ruining your files. The one I use the most is called "Small PDF."

 

OTHER TIPS & TRICKS

Proofreading

  • Don't save or send or print ANYTHING until you have checked for typos so many times that you feel like your head is going to explode.

  • Have your mom read it; read it out loud, do whatever you have to do to make sure you don't put all this work into a portfolio just to look like an idiot when you send it to someone.

Printing

  • Once you have your PDF all nice and neat, you can and should make a physical copy of it. Take the file to FedEx/Kinkos Office and have it printed.

  • Don't print it on glossy paper, that's what amateurs do. Professionals always use MATTE paper.

  • Get the whole thing bound on the left side and then you're done! I like to put clear covers on the front and back of my portfolio but I know a lot of designers don't like that, so just use your judgment.

Matching

  • I find that employers really go crazy for a matching resume and portfolio.

  • Use the same font, make the same header, whatever you want, just create a “brand” for yourself!

 

BONUS PROJECTS

Here's some ideas for things you can design quickly that will give your portfolio more street cred:

  • Print

    • Posters

    • Flyers

    • Invitations (DON'T do invitations for bridal or baby showers -- It looks juvenile and inexperienced. Try a housewarming party, Christmas party, or employee appreciation event)

    • Brochures

    • Stationery (business cards, letterhead, etc)

    • Magazine articles

  • Environmental

    • Billboards

    • Pull-up banners

    • Tradeshow materials

  • Events

    • Invitations

    • Posters

    • Tickets

    • Programs

    • Awards

    • Music covers (album artwork)

  • Swag/merchandise

    • T-shirts

    • Jerseys

    • Clothing tags

  • Photography

    • Nature/architecture

    • Portraiture

    • Flat lays

    • Moodboards

I hope this helps you create a graphic design portfolio that you’re proud of! If I could give you one last piece of advice, it would be to spend less time agonizing over your portfolio and more time actually applying for jobs. If you organize your work, write descriptions, and format it correctly, you’ll get hired in no time.

Thanks for reading!
Rebecca


RPS_Graphic-Design-Portfolio_Blog_Images_Graphic-Design-Portfolio_Tips_Vertical-04.png

Update: This blog post has been extremely popular over the years. I’m grateful I could help so many of you create design portfolios that showcase your skills and potentially find work as a designer! If you’re interested in supporting my work, please consider saving one of these images to Pinterest or leaving me a comment. Thanks!

 
How To: Design a Resume in Microsoft Word (And Other Design Tips)

One of the worst parts of job searching is revising and redesigning your resume. If you don't know what you're doing, it can be overwhelming to try and summarize all your skills and experiences on one sheet of paper. As a designer, one of the requests I get most often is for resume design. I love layout and design and I love building resumes for other people, but I honestly don't think you need to hire a designer to do it. So here's what I'm going to do. I'm going to show you how I would design a basic resume using Microsoft Word using the steps listed below, and then I'm going to outline a couple resources that will take your resume from zero to hero. Shoutout to Cob for letting me use his resume as an example!

EASY resume design tips for non graphic designers! //rebeccapetersonstudio.com//

EASY resume design tips for non graphic designers! //rebeccapetersonstudio.com//

This is how the resume looks without any formatting. Sadly, it's better than some other resumes I've seen, but I bet we can make it GREAT.

STEP 1: Length
Resumes should only be one page. This is probably common sense, but I've seen lots of people send in resumes for jobs with a two (or more) page document. Unless you're submitting a CV as qualification for a Ph.D., there's really no need for a long resume. I'm sorry if you're a mega genius with infinite experience, you're going to have to cut something out and keep it to one page.

I made the entire text one point size smaller (12-11) to fit it on one page. Easy!

STEP 2: Hierarchy
The most important thing on your resume is your name. You don't want an employer to fall in love with you and then forget who you are. Make your name 150% bigger than the rest of the text on your resume and you should be fine. You need to decide what's the next most important thing, I would say that's experience and education.

To add some clear hierarchy, I made Jacob's name much bigger and bolded the title of each category. It would probably help if I arranged the dates differently, since those aren't important. I'll get to that in a minute.

To add some clear hierarchy, I made Jacob's name much bigger and bolded the title of each category. It would probably help if I arranged the dates differently, since those aren't important. I'll get to that in a minute.

STEP 3: Spacing
This is a general rule of graphic design. Things are easier to read when they're arranged in groups. We want employers to be able to skip from section to section easily. This is done by separating the different categories.

STEP 4: Alignment.
This is probably a more general design tip, but it's better not to have something aligned at the center.

//BONUS: The easiest way to align things in Microsoft Word is to put them in tables. That way you don't have to mess with the margins or rulers. I put all my information in a table and turn the borders white when I'm all done!//

You could arrange this table several different ways. I like more white space so I put the category titles to the right of the description. See what works best for your resume.

You could arrange this table several different ways. I like more white space so I put the category titles to the right of the description. See what works best for your resume.

STEP 5: Type.
Again, I'm sure this is common sense, but try not to use some wild and crazy typeface. Serif or san serif is fine, but don't combine them unless you really know what you're doing. These are some of my favorite "traditional font families": Goudy, Didot, Garamond, Calibri, Futura, Gill Sans,  and Segoe UI Light. (When in doubt, use a font that's already on your computer. Those are made by experienced type designers and they're guaranteed to be easier to read.

I didn't want to make this resume too complicated, so I kept everything in the same font family. I used Calibri Bold 13pt for the titles, Calibri Italic 11pt for the subtitles and Calibri light 11pt for the body text. Jacob's name is 18pt, but I might make it even bigger.

I didn't want to make this resume too complicated, so I kept everything in the same font family. I used Calibri Bold 13pt for the titles, Calibri Italic 11pt for the subtitles and Calibri light 11pt for the body text. Jacob's name is 18pt, but I might make it even bigger.

STEP 6: Bullet points.
Employers are spending less than one minute looking at your resume, so if you split information into bullets, they'll be able get through it faster. However, if you put everything in bullets, it gives you lots of weird white space. Just use your judgment and you'll be fine.

It's amazing how much better it looks with just a few bullets!

It's amazing how much better it looks with just a few bullets!

STEP 7: Color
I would only use color if you're applying for a creative job. Most established corporations see color as immature and unprofessional. If you do use color, use something soft like blue or green and avoid neons. Remember to avoid doing something full-bleed unless you want to pay twice as much every time you print your resume.

STEP 8: Style
Once your resume is organized the way you like it, you have to use your own style to give it some flavor. This might be scary, but I promise it's not hard. Just google search "resume design" and copy a few things you like.

This is what the resume looks like without borders. Pretty nice, huh? 

This is what the resume looks like without borders. Pretty nice, huh? 

I merged the two cells of the "personal" category since there was no date and I added a bottom line beneath his name. It looks good, but there's still one more thing I want to try.

I merged the two cells of the "personal" category since there was no date and I added a bottom line beneath his name. It looks good, but there's still one more thing I want to try.

Here I just changed the formatting of Jacob's contact information and added another line at the bottom! Voila! A well-designed resume in 60 minutes.

Here I just changed the formatting of Jacob's contact information and added another line at the bottom! Voila! A well-designed resume in 60 minutes.

//BONUS STEPS:
1. File type.
Everyone's computer is different. You never know if someone has the same version of Microsoft Word or if the font you downloaded will work on their computer. Sometimes even google docs get screwy when they're shared. Save yourself some trouble by saving your resume as a PDF.  If you're really anxious, email your resume to a friend and see if the formatting stays the same. (P.S. If you don't have the software to turn a .JPG or  .DOC into a PDF, check out this online converter: www.freepdfconvert.com

2. Printing.
A nice resume includes nice physical presentation. Take the time  at a copy shop to print your resume correctly. Find a nice paper and make several copies of your resume. I always like to print my resume on slightly thicker paper because I want it to feel PHYSICALLY DIFFERENT when it's in my employer's hands. See what works for you!//

Last thing:  TAILOR THE DESIGN OF YOUR RESUME FOR THE JOB YOU'RE APPLYING FOR.
If you're applying for a job as a video game designer, you should absolutely include drawings of little Mario characters jumping around on your resume. If not, FORGET ABOUT IT. I can't tell you how many resumes I see on Pinterest that are completely over-designed. Most  employers aren't using your resume to judge your design skills (even if you're a designer, your PORTFOLIO should show-off your design, not your resume) so don't go crazy with colors and fonts. Here's some examples of some resumes that I think are way too overdesigned:
 

I hope this helps! Just a couple more things before I finish:

  • You can download the Word document I used to make Cob's resume if you're just too overwhelmed to make your own. (BELOW)
  • If you have a LinkedIn account, they have a free resume builder that has some great customizable designs.
  • I liked this BuzzFeed article about resume design. Use one of these ideas as inspiration for your own resume!

Did anyone make it to the end? Haha thanks for reading! I'll be adding more resume resources to this list as I find them. Good luck!

12 Easy Ways to Market Your Business (For FREE!)

1. Send your clients a weekly newsletter. Too busy to do it weekly? Try monthly. Current AND PAST clients. EMAIL IS FREE, USE IT.

2. Send a physical, in-the-mail holiday card to all of your clients. Missed the holiday season? Try a Valentine's Day card. Or an Easter card. Or an Earth Day card. Or anything. Put a picture of your business or product AND your contact information. Make a FREE offer of something if they call by a certain date.

3. Make a list of all your current clients who work in your same industry. Anyone who works with or for similar companies is GOLD for your business. Make a list now while you have the time.

4. Call/email your office and see how you're treated as a customer. Seeing where you get held up by the system could be very eye-opening for some businesses!

5. Post something on your Facebook page. Post about why you started your company. Post about your new products. Post about your favorite client. It doesn't really matter what you post, as long as it's interesting and relevant to you!

6. Put a video on your website. Explain how your business works, show some client testimonials, ANYTHING. Just show people what you're all about in a fun and interesting way.

//BONUS// Speaking of your site...do you have one? If you don't have a website, GET ONE. Build one for free on Weebly.com, Wix.com, or pay $100 and make one on Squarespace.com. It doesn't have to be fancy, it just has to exist.

7. If you do have a site, sit down and spend an hour working on it. Read EVERY word on EVERY page. It is embarrassing how many sites have misspelled words and links to dead pages. Take the time to look at every single thing on your site and make a note of what needs to change.

8. This might seem silly, but is there a picture of YOU and YOUR TEAM on your website? There should be. Do you look happy? Remember, people don't buy products, they buy values. Show your clients who you are and make a personal connection before selling them anything.

9. Search yourself on Google. Search your company on Google. Read the reviews. Where do you rank when someone searches "your industry, your city"?

10. Update your LinkedIn page. Find interesting groups in your industry and join them. Read up on current issues, popular products, and exciting events coming up. Show potential clients that you are well-connected.

11. Set GOALS for new clients in 2015 and make a plan of how you will get them. Do you have a plan for growth? This may seem basic, but the experts say that half of all business owners have ZERO plans for expansion in 2015. Which half are you in?

12. Make a list of the things your company offers that are different from everybody else. Is it convenient hours? Outstanding customer service? Anything? Think critically about your business and what you can do to help it improve.

 

//BONUS//
If this post was nothing new for you and you want some more in-depth advice, check out these articles:
4 Ways to Market Your Business for Free by Entrepreneur.com
7 Ways to Promote Your Business Online for Free by Open Forum
31 Low-Cost Ways to Promote Your Business by Business Know How