I received an email a short while ago, and I just couldn't wait to share this particular success story with you.
This is how one smart work at home mom, a member of Supportibles.com, beat out over 1000 other applicants for a virtual assistant's job that paid over $68,000 a year. And she did it by taking a a simple test, and used her results in a really creative way…
I am so excited to show you how this one work-at-home mom managed to add this unique addition to her resume and cover letter in a sincere and tasteful way that proved her talents to a future employer.
NOTE: This employer would never have noticed her job application otherwise, and I'm about to show you why…
When the job advertisement for a virtual home assistant first appeared online, this mom realized it was her absolute dream work at home job. The job had a starting salary of $68,000, and it was entirely virtual, meaning, she could finally make great money, and still maintain enough of a flexible schedule so she could have time for other activities such as spending time with her children, exercising and cooking healthy meals for her family.
Even better, she could save money for the future by taking the money that she would have otherwise spent on appropriate office attire, lunches and driving to work (the rising cost of gas immediately comes to mind!) and put it into her kid's college fund instead.
However to get the job, she knew that:
- She had to somehow stand out from the crowd;
- There would be thousands of other individuals applying for this job that not only paid a high salary but was also extremely convenient;
- She knew that many of the applicants might be more qualified than her;
- She also knew that in order to succeed, she would have to do much more then send the employer a run-of-the-mill resume and cover letter;
- She would have to add something special to her job application that would pique the employer's curiosity and compel him to at least read her application.
In order to brainstorm the ways she could make her application stand out from the others, she pored over the job description.
The employer was asking for someone who was “smart”, intuitive and that could take initiative. To show that she was both smart and could take the initiative (especially when it comes to proving herself) this inspired mom decided to take the Classic IQ Test
How she proved she was “smarter” than the other applicants…
Her reasoning was that if she could ace the IQ test then she could send the employer the results and show that she was a cut above the rest, at least in terms of intelligence. However once she completed the IQ test and got the analysis and results back, she realized that they could help her do more than just prove that she was smart!
My analysis of why this test is so well respected…
… (And worked so well to get her the virtual assistant's job).
This Classic IQ Test is one of the many games, puzzles and challenges offered by Tickle. However this IQ test is quite serious. It is considered one of the most thorough and scientifically accurate IQ Tests on the Webs. Previously this test was offered only to corporations, schools, and certified professionals, but now anyone can take it and have their results assessed immediately. Tickle asserts that this test is free to take online, private and developed by PhDs.
The free Classic IQ Test at Tickle is only eight pages long and probably won't take you more than 20 minutes to do. It starts with simple comprehension questions and determines whether or not you can you read things backwards and forwards, identify similar objects and understand sequences.
These skills would be very important for with regards to your abilities as a virtual assistant to understand instructions, read between the lines and handle any kind of project management. In essence this series of questions determines how much common sense you have and if you have any natural ability to organize information.
The middle part of the test concentrates largely on your verbal skills and your ability to understand English. Giving you sentences that read like the very worst of bureaucratic gobbledy gook tests reading comprehension. The questions are designed to test your verbal understanding, your ability to interpret a metaphors and your ability to understand anagrams.
Scoring well on this part of the test would indicate an individual who communicates well with others, does not take things personally or too literally and that is able to demystify even the most detailed of instructions or documents.
The third part of the test examines your perceptions, especially when it comes to geometry, mathematics and making spatial relationships. A good score in this section of the test would mean that you have superb analytic skills and ability to reason. It demonstrates your ability to use logic to solve problems as well as an acute visual sense “that does not miss a trick.”
Scoring well in this section of the test would be paramount for an employer who would trust you to use your judgment and common sense to solve problems and make positive initiatives without having to look over your shoulder all the time.
Once you have completed the eight-page test, you are immediately led to a page on the web that gives you your IQ score. The average IQ score is 100. Anything above that is considered to be exceptional. However you don't get the full analysis of the results without paying for. The test is free to take. Once you take the free version of the test you are only given a taste of the analysis that you would get if you paid $12.95 for the full report.
For instance at the end of one IQ Test, where an individual taking it excelled at the verbal part of the test, the following interpretation came up…
Your Intellectual Type is Word Warrior. This means you have exceptional verbal skills. You can easily make sense of complex issues and take an unusually creative approach to solving problems. Your strengths also make you a visionary. Even without trying you're able to come up with lots of new and creative ideas.”
Can you imagine the power of having a well respected third party give you this kind of reference on your cover letter?
When this lady saw that this was the type of deep analysis that Tickle was including as part of the results of her IQ test she knew she had exactly the type of commentary that she needed to embellish her cover letter and allow her to stand out from the crowd. So she sprung for the $12.95 to get the rest of the analysis (and all the real gems to add to her resume).
The full report was sent immediately to her by email and contained a summary of her intellectual strengths, charts and graphs of how her intelligence rated using five different commonly used intelligence scales, a complete answer key to all of the questions on the test and a description of how her average IQ score compares to others in various states and provinces.
She saved her online IQ Test as a Word document (File -> Save As -> Word document) and highlighted her answers on the test by using Word's “Comment” feature, explaining how this report demonstrated that she had the skill set needed for the job. She also included excerpts from the full report she had paid for in her cover letter to make it more persuasive sounding to her future employer.
This little test landed her the $68,000 work at home job!
She was thrilled when her leap of faith landed her the virtual assistant position. When she was hired, her employer told her that she had indeed managed to stand out from the crowd by including the unusual element of the IQ test in her application. He just had to read it out of curiosity and he was impressed by its contents.
“But what if I'm not that smart?”
Although this is a wonderful way to augment any job application, especially if the job description accents the idea that they are looking for someone “smart”, should you still go ahead with this even if you don't do that well on the IQ test?
Surprisingly the answer would be yes, but with a few alterations.
For example, let's say that you take the Classic IQ Test and your score is a lot lower than you thought it would be. It would probably not be a good idea to send in the full report in that case or any of the statistics comparing your IQ to others. However one of the great things about the in-depth report does describe where your strengths lie.
For instance you could score a less than average IQ but still be identified as a Word Warrior as described above.
The key is to quote the excerpts from the “Intellectual Strengths” portion of the in-depth IQ Report.
For instance when writing your cover letter you could rephrase the above Word Warrior description to read as: “According to a recent IQ test I took that included an analysis of my intellectual strengths, I was independently evaluated as an individual that easily makes sense of complex issues and takes a creative approach to problem solving. Brainstorming to come up with new and creative ideas is a specialty.”
At the very least, such a report can also act as inspiration for the type of things that you should put into a cover letter to a future employer. Remember that no matter what type of score you get on an IQ Test there is really no such thing as a “stupid person.” What counts is how creative and innovative you are when it comes to identifying your strengths.
There were over a thousand people who also applied for that particular mom's virtual assistant position and probably many of them had higher IQ's than her. The key to her success came down to her making the most of what she did have to offer – even if it was only an online IQ report.
As Forrest Gump says, “stupid is as stupid does.” Stupid in this case, would have been letting her normal cover letter and resume fall into a slush pile with all the rest. She did not really care what others thought of her sending the IQ Report in as part of her application. All she cared about was getting noticed so she had the chance to sell herself, and getting noticed got her the job of her dreams!
To your work at home success!
P.S. Tickle also has another excellent test, called the Career Test. Although I haven't tested it yet, I can imagine how well it might work to add extra oomph to your cover letter. Take the free Career Test