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The Secret: Your resume really isn't about you!

31 Jul 2010 | Posted Under Careers
It may seem counter intuitive.  Your resume's focus is supposed to be about you and all you have done.  It is what you have been told and perhaps paid good money to hear.  The reality is that everything about the job search including the resume is about the audience reading it. You are marketing you.  What you write, how your package your experience, what you highlight should answer one question.  Does it help your reader, aka your next employer, solve a problem?  What do you contribute to the success of that firm?  

Research the firm and understand the values and mission it markets.  How can you align what you know, what you want to do and what you have done to what is needed for the growth?   

The top of your resume, just below your contact information should include a professional summary.  Many people write an objective such as :  "To join a firm where I can contribute my skills blah, blah, blah."  That is your objective.  Clearly if you have a resume, everyone reading it knows your objective.  The professional summary is geared towards what you have to offer someone else.  What is unique about you that will help the firm reading your resume?  Do you have certifications?  Are you bilingual? Do you have extensive international experience?  If so write it!  Showcase in this section the leadership attributes you bring to a role.  Is it your work ethic;  your communication skills; or your collaborative nature?

A professional summary written to engage the reader will give you an edge over others.  The resume's job is to get you the interview.  Give your resume the polish it needs to succeed so you can succeed in the interview.

Kathy Pabst Robsahw Says:
Monday, October 18, 2010 3:14 PM
Kelley is, of course, so very right in her comments and cautions. If I may add, by changing this up you are also going to be in a position of strength when you interview by phone. You will have done the preparation and have a new language with which to answer questions and you won't be boringly repeating what your resume says. I think about 75% of companies now have first interviews by phone .... some senior positions go to 3 interviews by phone before face to face so being totally prepared to market you and not just be like everyone else will get you that interview.
Fergus McClelland Says:
Friday, August 6, 2010 8:46 AM
Kelley is absolutely correct. It isn't about you it is about what you can bring to them. When you arrive after writing a perfect resume you need to look and sound right - to listen skilfully and be prepared to show them how you are the right person for the position. Your clothes count - what should they be? Your voice is powerfully influential - how should it sound? Get the resume, the look and the sound right and you have little left to do to ensure success.

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