Friday, February 04, 2011

Does your resume stink?

Perhaps I should start off with a different question like "when is the last time you even looked at your resume?"

I look at resumes ... way too many....every day, and I just have to ask, what are people thinking???

Your resume is your professional introduction to the world, it's the herald that announces you. You want to have it scream "capable, experienced professional", not "out of touch, illiterate egotist"

I could go on for DAYS with a list of things you should / should not put in your resume, but here are a couple of quick pointers:

1. Only put in things you have actually done. If you lie, we will find out, then your name is MUD.

2. Put relevant things in your resume; if you are going for a job as an astronaut, it's not a good idea to talk about your time as a lion tamer...

3. Put measures and metrics in your resume; Don't just say "improved sales results" , say "improved sales results by x%"

4. Put specific stuff in your resume; following from the prior point, say how you improved sales results - what specific actions you took (eg, "by following up on all sales calls with points to address identified customer needs")

5. Make sure your resume and / or cover letter (YES, you DO need one of those), specifically illustrates how your qualifications match the requirements of the role.

Now those are just five quick pointers that will help... for a deeper look, I will now turn you over to an older, but ever-so-relevant post by the wizards over at Manager-Tools which gives this topic a much deeper look. Note that I don't buy into Mark's views on the one-page resume, but you should consider the following rule-of-thumb; the number of DECADES of experience you have is the maximum number of pages your resume should contain.

Happy hunting!


lavanya said...

Good post. You have neatly pointed out how a perfect resume should be and what all the important stuff it should have.

charlotte supervisor training said...

Nice article! These are great tips.... it is unfortunate but some people really don't have any idea what to put on a resume. Thanks for sharing!

Simple HR said...


Thank you for such a cracking article.

With the jobs market in such a state of flux, the resume has become more valuable than ever.

Have circulated your blog to some of our clients who also think it's great!

Keep up the good work