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An amazing job application

You will not get a job if you just email a resume.  The HR department just received 20,000 identical emails.

Do something to stand out or you’ll never break through.

At one extreme: Here’s the coolest job application I ever received. A pizza box full of items to show that the applicant gets who we are and what we do.


At the other end: We have a member of our team who got hired because she sent a great cover letter in the mail. It was the only paper resume we got, so we noticed.  We weren’t even hiring, but the letter was so great we had to grab her before someone else did.

Here’s the letter:

College graduate sends resume via snail mail on purpose

CHICAGO, IL — GasPedal employees were taken by surprise Friday afternoon when the mailman dropped off a letter at their Chicago office. The local mailman, who has been out of work since 2004, hand delivered the lone letter containing the resume of Chicago native Adele Laurie Hazan. “I’ve been out of a job ever since Creed broke up — I’m not quite sure if the two are correlated… No one seems to need me anymore. Why would anyone actually go out and buy stamps? I am the mailman and I don’t even know how much it costs to send a letter.”

Hazan’s resume, which was printed on thick, scented cardstock contained work experience in a variety of places including the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Parliament of the United Kingdom. “I was excited at first because I thought she worked for George Clinton and the Parliament — you know the ambassador of funk? But it turned out to be some housing and immigration stuff,” said GasPedal employee Joe Smith. Smith scanned the resume and emailed it around the office as one of his many daily funny forwards. It also included a link to a YouTube clip from Sister Act II: Back in the Habit of Whoopi Goldberg singing “Wait a minute Mr. Postman.” Everyone in the office got a big kick out of it.

Ironically, we were able to reach Hazan in regards to this story via email. When asked why she chose this antiquated means of communication, she told us she was having trouble stealing her neighbor’s internet that week and had read about the US Postal Service in a book. As self-proclaimed fastest-typer on this side of the Mississippi, and lover of all things Google — in addition to her work in public relations — she felt as though she was well qualified to work for GasPedal. Hazan lists her assets as an employee to include her strong writing skills, creativity, and status as pop culture know-it-all.

“I am not sure if it’s my resume or the way I sent it that is creating such a stir over there,” says Hazan. “Either way, it would be an honor to work for GasPedal.” Like most Millenials, she survives on water, Facebook, a wide range of blogs, and is very interested in somehow applying her University of Wisconsin-Madison college education to those items — this is where GasPedal comes in. She has not yet received a response from GasPedal; however, she expects it to arrive in the snail mail. After all, she is taking credit for making postal service “vintage” and “hip” again.

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  1. Lindsay Lebresco October 13, 2009 at 8:16 am #

    This is awesome! And I’ve been hearing from Adele re: Supergenius & now I want to know- “why the heck isn’t she speaking?!” This is very cool but Adele’s lucky in that you can appreciate a quirky sense of humor- this might not work if she was trying to get a job at say, the post office. :)

  2. Kevin Richard October 13, 2009 at 8:21 am #

    Wow what did she have in there? That looked like a lot of materials! Amazing idea, I do think there are a lot of people who just shoot out resumes with little thought (and sometimes not even a cover letter) but I could see this putting a smile on anyones face. Congrats to her!

  3. Shelley Ryan October 13, 2009 at 1:04 pm #

    So, you’ll have to tell us the end of the story! Is Adele working out as well as you’d hoped for GasPedal?

  4. Andy Sernovitz October 13, 2009 at 5:12 pm #

    So far …

  5. Lisa (lablady) October 13, 2009 at 5:28 pm #

    I wouldn’t regularly recommend sending a bulky collage as your resume. In the rare instance, it might work, depending upon the company and the person receiving it. However, I do often recommend either hand-delivering or snail-mailing your resume to people. It’s a smart move. Your email resume may easily get deleted amongst the hundreds of emailed resumes received by the hiring manager.

    Sending your resume via snail-mail on good quality paper with an exceptional cover letter in a good envelope gets you noticed because many companies don’t receive letters in the mail anymore. It’s a treat nowadays! Plus it has the tactile advantage. Who doesn’t love to hold an envelope in their hands addressed specifically to them? It makes you feel special. Good going, Adele!

    And for that extra impact, a hand-delivered envelope can be even more impressive, especially if you time it correctly and can meet the person it is addressed to ~ it’s always nice to put a face with a name on a piece of paper for both parties. :)

  6. Paul Harrison, Carve Consulting October 14, 2009 at 9:15 am #

    Agree this might work for small firms, but unfortunately the vast majority of big organisations have absolutely no idea / no processes to deal with non-standard applications that don’t go via their 74-step-desgined-for-HR-not-users based online application systems. To their eternal detriment I have to day

  7. Jeremy Victor October 14, 2009 at 11:00 pm #

    I love blog posts that bring the word *brilliant* to mind. Here’s to Adele for her creativity and you Andy, for hiring her when “we weren’t even hiring.”

    Today talent makes all the difference…it’s hard not to notice Adele’s after reading that letter. Best of luck and thanks for sharing.

  8. Andee Sellman, One Sherpa October 18, 2009 at 4:33 pm #

    Great thoughts as usual Andy
    Sometimes we get so stuck in the status quo we forget that to be noticed , we have to be noticed!! This means standing out in some way which is not offensive to the process. I guess it’s much riskier to stand out but when you’ve sent in 100 resumes and not received a reply its time to do something different.


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