The Ladders


Digg thisEmail this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on LinkedInPin on PinterestShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponShare on TumblrTweet about this on Twitter

Lately, I have become more and more disillusioned with “The Ladders”, the source for $100,000+ jobs and $100,000+ candidates.

It all started with the critiques. I had been getting clients that were coming to me saying they had gone to The Ladders who had written a scathing review of their current resumes, but would happily remedy that for a mere $1,000 (some were more, some were less). So, for the cost of an average mortgage payment they would turn it around AND THEN find you a job for $100,000 and up. The thing was, I was having clients say, ” I don’t like this resume at all–can you fix it?”. I had one fellow who paid upwards of $900.00 for his resume that looked like something my 5-year old would write.

But, it didn’t start out that way. Back when it first came onto the internet scene, The Ladders really was busting out some nice resumes. They had qualified, certified resume writers. People were happy and everyone was talking about it. I was one of the first to jump on The Ladders bandwagon, telling my clients what a great site it was. Then we see commercials about it. Wow. It’s big time, now.

Then, things started to change. It was first pointed out to me through my professional association (PARW/CC) about the negative critiquing and not-so-good resumes coming out of that place. I was very optimistic though… not me, I still love it. Still believing in the dream. After all, the majority of my clients are senior-level execs, so I was thrilled to be able to have something promising to tell them. “Just go to The Ladders… they have $100,000+ jobs there”.

Soon I started hearing about false advertising, jobs that were way under $100K, barely starting at $30,000, sometimes The Ladders did not even know the pay range of the jobs they offer.

I don’t mean to bash another company in the careers industry, but I am leary about The Ladders now– and am hoping the founder, Mark Cenedella, will dump some of the writers he scrounged up, get some honest-to-goodness $100,000 jobs back in there, and restore it to it’s former glory.

What have your experiences with The Ladders been? Talk to me…

Bookmark and Share

Written by Erin Kennedy, MCD, CMRW, CPRW - Visit the website to hire executive resume writer Erin Kennedy, CERW, CPRW

Erin is an internationally renowned certified resume writer specializing in professional and executive level resumes and career services.

Digg thisEmail this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on LinkedInPin on PinterestShare on RedditShare on StumbleUponShare on TumblrTweet about this on Twitter


4 Responses to “The Ladders”
  1. Anonymous says:

    The Ladders is a scam. They mostly hack jobs from other boards and DO NOT AND CANNOT guarantee that either the jobs or the talent are 100K. It is a complete falsehood – what our parents called “lies.” Their resume writing service is also a scam.


  2. Lee Tonge says:

    Hi Erin,

    I run a UK-based CV service and have had numerous problems whereby clients whose CV I created where coming back to me after a couple of weeks saying they had their CV reviewed by another company who slated it.

    Obviously concerned, I read through their ‘critique’ only to find that it basically said NOTHING! Every statement was generic: ‘the content is too bland’, ‘you need to sell yourself’, etc. In addition, they were picking up on points that didn’t even make sense! For example; advising on the inclusion of a section that already existed!

    The whole document was a scare tactic to get the candidate to part with hundreds of pounds. What is annoying is that companies like this are giving more reputable services a bad name. I spend a lot of time reviewing CVs free of charge, and sure; when you run a business you need to make money, but we also are in the industry to offer useful free advice to ensure our company has a good reputation – not scare people into giving us money.

  3. I agree, Lee.

    Thanks for the comment.

  4. Melissa says:


    My name is Michael, I am an Executive Resume Analyst and have reviewed over 20,000 resumes throughout my career. Because many candidates have difficulty viewing their resume objectively as a marketing tool, it is my job to evaluate how well your document distinguishes you from your competition.
    Before I begin the critique, I would like to warn you about my style because my comments can seem frank. But the reality is that the job market is very competitive now, so I find it beneficial to help you develop your resume by being direct.
    In the analysis below, I have outlined the weaknesses I currently see in your resume, which include the lack of focus with regards to accomplishments and missing introduction, but these are not all. Overall, I am concerned that your resume doesn’t effectively communicate your value as a Marketing Director – the resume lacks the ability to capture an employer and make him/her say, “I must have this person in for an interview”
    Now, here are the major issues I see on your resume:

    There is a monumental problem glaring at me in the top section of your resume. You are completely missing the most important part of a resume: the summary statement! The summary statement is the most-read section of an entire resume; it is your ticket to the interview. By not having a summary, you are not providing the hiring manager a quick peek into your past, present, and future to see where you’ve been, where you’re at, and where you want to go professionally.
    A requirement for any top-tier professional resume is a “Core Competencies” section. This section both provides a quick and comprehensive look at your strengths from the beginning of the resume and acts as a keyword-rich area that enables your resume to be quickly found by HR technology on the internet.
    Michael, this introductory section is increasingly important to employers as the job market becomes more competitive, and they have to read through more and more resumes each day. This is a great opportunity to stand out from the crowd right from the start and you haven’t taken advantage of it.

    Let’s look at your experience section next…
    Where are all of your powerful, hard-hitting job descriptions? Your job descriptions are much too generic and unexciting to support your extensive and impressive background as a high-caliber Marketing Manager or Director. Employers want detail, and need to clearly see how you are better than the other candidates with similar experience.
    One of the main issues right now is that from the way the resume is worded, you seem to be more of a “doer” than an “achiever”. Too many of your job descriptions are task-based and not result-based, meaning they tell what you DID-not what you ACHIEVED. To be effective and create excitement, it needs to be results-based: What was achieved as a RESULT of what you did? Employers are looking for results. They want to know you have solved problems similar to theirs and that you achieved the results for which they are looking. Look at these:
     Support other marketing and advertising professionals for company events.
     Build and generate marketing collateral and materials while managing budgets.
     Research and obtain information on marketing trends and competition to drive and formulate change.
    What are the results? What are the tangible outcomes? This is the focus that your resume lacks. You need to paint a vivid and informative picture that successfully captures the full scope of your achievements and value in an effective and logical manner. Believe me, your competition is not hiding their lights under baskets, so neither should you.
    Because you are targeting Manager or Director level positions, where you need to be focused on strategic thinking along with many other different constituents, your accomplishments need to put more emphasis on specific, measurable highlights that reflect your ability to produce great results regardless of external factors. Employers look for potential in the quantitative evidence you show of your success. You need to make sure you get that type of information in the resume in a highlighted way and a way that is going to convey the extent of your caliber to someone that does not know you.
    Overall, the content of your resume is too bland. The “WOW” factor isn’t there. It does not generate interest or show how you are any different than the other candidates against whom you are competing. Employers need to see clearly how you are better than the other candidates with similar experience. The employer will only call the candidates who have the best qualifications that are presented in the most convincing way on their resume.

    Moving on, we really need to work on elevating the language throughout the document! The document’s verbiage doesn’t support your goals. It’s “average” – not what you want when you are trying to sell your abilities and position yourself above the competition. Step up the language by using stronger action verbs to create excitement and keep your reader engaged!
    I spotted an issue that undermines your resume’s effectiveness here: sentence structure. Most of your sentences use what I call “procedural structure.” Terms like “Other duties include…” or “Prepare…” are not the most powerful verb phrases to use. Not only do these introduce a task rather than a result or success, but they make your job descriptions sound more like obligations rather than opportunities. By making your resume task-oriented, you’re obscuring your best work.

    Your resume isn’t formatted and organized to give the reader what he/she seeks quickly. Resumes aren’t read start to finish like a book. Instead, the summary is read and then the rest of the document is scanned quickly with job titles, bullet statements, and other highlighted material being read first. The primary interests of hiring managers come in the following order: summary, job titles, experience, bullets, education.
    I highly recommend a more professional design to provide a more executive impression. A lot can be done with the formatting and design to improve first visual impressions while still maintaining a conservative appearance. It’s crucial that your resume stands out from the pack, in a polished, executive way. Keep in mind that your resume goes first, it’s their only initial impression of you, make it appear as you would walking through their office door.
    Michael, go back and reread your resume, and you will see that this document is selling you short. The bottom line: Your resume simply does not fully reflect your professional caliber, and you are not making the first impression count. You are clearly a strong candidate, but that is simply not enough to get an interview! Frankly, your resume positions you for a lower-level job and salary than you desire-or deserve.
    Only the BEST RESUMES-NOT CANDIDATES-get the most attention and eventually an interview.

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

Download Our Report:

5 Surefire Resume Tips To Dazzle The Employer & Get You To The Interview