The Better Book for Getting Hired: A Professional Approach to Writing Resumes and Marketing Yourself


155 pages
Contains Illustrations
ISBN 0-88908-093-3




Reviewed by P.F. McKenna

P.F. McKenna was librarian at the Police Academy, Brampton, Ontario.


If someone has certain skills and a strong desire to find employment, the next most important component of job-hunting is the candidate’s ability to present himself effectively to a prospective employer. Robert Downe has produced a book which is designed to give assistance in this third area — effective presentation.

The book begins with some reassuring observations about the job-hunting process. The reader is told that by marketing his strengths he will stand a better chance of getting employment. The use and characteristics of the good résumé are discussed and samples are provided of a poor and a meaningful résumé. Tips are offered on ways of improving the résumé so that it will be physically and factually more appealing. Mr. Downe has also provided a blank résumé which the reader may use for his own job search. The importance of the covering letter is touched upon and samples of the various standard forms are provided.

One very useful section of this self-help guide deals with ways and means of finding the appropriate person or persons to whom one should direct the résumé. Mr. Downe provides a most useful checklist of questions to ask regarding the companies the prospective employee is interested in approaching. He also supplies the addresses of the federal and provincial registrars of companies, who can make this information available quickly and at a reasonable cost. Next are some suggestions for approaching the job interview, a brief discussion of how the employer sizes up the candidate, and some important questions the candidate should ask himself about the company and the people with whom he will be working. Mr. Downe then lists the addresses of Employment Standards Branches and Human Rights Commissions in Canada, and sources of information on the communities where the job hunter might be thinking of relocating.

The text is followed by 26 sample résumés for a variety of occupations from Bank Manager to Union/Management Negotiator. While Mr. Downe’s book should prove useful to the job seeker, it is not particularly well written. The sample résumés contain a number of poor grammatical constructions, and the overall tone of the discussion is somewhat too colloquial. Nonetheless, these complaints are beside the point if the advice provided in the pages of this book helps someone secure gainful employment!


Downe, Robert P., “The Better Book for Getting Hired: A Professional Approach to Writing Resumes and Marketing Yourself,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 26, 2024,