Charmine Alia January 7, 2021 Resume
It is important to remember that a resume is your written introduction. Although this short list of ”don’ts” does not completely encompass what to write and what not to write on a resume, prospective candidates who avoid these seven deadly sins of resume writing will avoid common pitfalls and have a better chance of not only catching the interest of the recruiter, but also scoring the interview. Use the right bait and you have a better chance of catching your next big job opportunity!
So there it is…everything you need to know about writing your resume. I sincerely wish you the best of luck in your endeavors and feel free to contact me if you ever need any assistance. I’m here to help!
Have a Strong Objective Statement – Although this is a matter of some debate these days, I firmly believe a strong, concise Objective Statement can go a long way. First off, it immediately tells the reader what job you are applying for. That can be a big deal when you’re submitting your resume to a HR representative who has their hands full with many different job openings. Recruiters as well. And if you’re a senior manager, you don’t want to get thrown in the pile with the mail clerks, right? Not only that, but an effective Objective Statement will briefly summarize your qualifications so a hiring manager can make an instantaneous decision whether or not to keep reading. They do that anyways, so why not address their needs in the intro and add value by showing them what you have to offer right off the bat. Remember, I’m only talking about one sentence here. One sentence to market yourself. Once sentence to spark their interest. You don’t want to give the reader too much to think about, rather you want them to proceed on and read the rest of your resume. So grab their attention, establish your professional identity, show them your value, and let them move on to the good stuff!
Typical Misconceptions. One of the first misconceptions that people hold about the use of resumes is that they are never actually read, especially when there are online application forms to be filled out. While this cannot be proven either way, I do know from my own experience as a professional writer that most recruiters do look at the resumes received because it provides a general overview of the candidate’s attention to, or lack thereof, details such as the style and type of writing. Another common misconception is that a resume must be one page in total length. I am not certain I know how that idea became popular or why it has remained so engrained as it ultimately serves little purpose for most candidates and it can work to the detriment of a job seeker. The reason why is that a one page resume, for a person who has fairly extensive experience, can sell them short. This type of resume will either leave off critical information or it will be typed in a font size that is not easy to read. Other misconceptions include the use of an objective on the resume and writing detailed job descriptions. A job objective is usually a statement of what the candidate would like to do or the specific job they are seeking. The reason why this is not needed is that the cover letter should express interest in the position and there is no need to state it again. In addition, many objective statements are so specific that the candidate would be ruled out from other potential positions that may be related to the advertised job. In addition, many jobs I have seen listed on resumes includes wording that either came from job descriptions or have been written like standard wording from these types of descriptions, and that doesn’t necessarily explain the skills the candidate has and may contain jargon that is not easily understood by everyone reading it.
Include Irrelevant Info (AKA ”Fluff”) – If it’s not important, don’t add it to your resume. If you were a cook 10 years ago but now you’re looking for a job in retail management, don’t clutter up your resume with irrelevancy. Try to put yourself in the shoes of the hiring manager and ask yourself what they would see as important. How does your background correspond with their needs as an employer? Anything else is fluff. Don’t add your hobbies to your resume. Don’t add your references (if they want them, they’ll ask at the appropriate time). And don’t include your high school education either. Finally, don’t be redundant and repeat yourself throughout the context of your resume. It’s OK to reinforce themes, but don’t push it. If your title has been Branch Manager at each of your past three companies, find a way to differentiate each of these positions and highlight your most notable accomplishments. Don’t just copy and paste the line ”Managed a team of branch employees” three times. That will get you nowhere.
It is a powerful resume that tells Stephen’s story quite well. But we didn’t get to this resume quickly or easily. There were bumps and bruises, starts and stops, and detours along the way. I’ll also tell you a bit of my story, as I am a resume writer who learned and grew from the experience of working with Stephen. I’ll tell this story in the form of issues, describing each issue encountered and the ways that the issues were resolved. Issue #1-Personalization. Managers want to hire people, not marketing brochures. Your resume should give them a good sense of who are and how you might fit into their team. It’s a recipe for disaster when your resume tells one story and your interview tells another. You do a disservice to yourself when you let others describe you without comment or intervention. You know yourself better than anyone else, so it’s your decision how you are portrayed in your resume. The first sentence in Stephen’s summary of qualifications statement answers one of my common questions when gathering information for a resume: ”What is it that makes you most proud?” Stephen loves to stretch software functionality almost to its breaking point-it’s a game to see who will win. Even though he’s proficient with numerous BI and data warehousing tools, Excel remains his favorite. It was during our discussions about Excel that I captured this sentence: ”Innovative technology professional who takes pride in building complex solutions with basic technology, getting the most from a company’s technology investment.”
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