Monday, April 02, 2007

Your Resume and the Fruit Fly

From time to time I'll speak to groups about how to work on their resume. Lord knows I've seen enough to recognize a good one - at least in format, right? ;) Here are some of my quick tips on how to keep your resume in tip-top shape:

The Attention Span of a Fruit Fly
You typically only have 10-20 seconds of a Recruiter or Hiring Managers time.
It's not fair - but it's true.

Keep it short and sweet - customize that resume if you know what job you're trying to be considered for. Translation: Don't give a generic resume that doesn't focus on your incredible accomplishments as a Rocket Scientist to the folks at NASA.

  1. Diversity & Organizations
    If it's nothing else it's a buzzword!
    "Job seekers should pride themselves in sharing information about their diverse affiliations and community involvement with potential employers. Sharing this information helps to demonstrate leadership and a commitment to the communities in which they live," Granville says,

  2. Get Current and have options for your electronic resumes รข€“ At least in your format!
    MS Word, .TXT, even HTML = Go
    PDF = No-Go

  3. Everyone Likes an Action Movie!
    Both employers and search engines scan documents for key words and phrases that describe a candidate's skills and abilities. Don't worry about repetition as long as it is not gratuitous. Start sentences or bullets with words such as founded, designed, organized, completed, implemented, created or built.

  4. Your Honor, I have proof!
    To move your career to the next level, your resume should read like an argument with supportive evidence. "I am good at X because I have experience in Y and Z."

  5. Kill the fluff
    Kill items that don't identify the direct impact you made for the company.
    "References available upon request." Can go away - we all know you have them and if we want them, we'll simply ask you