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RESUMÉ TIPS

Resumé Tip 1: Stay above the trivia

Strong candidates know how to concentrate on the most recent, most senior and most complex functions in their employment history. They don't waste space on minor skills and repetitions from the distant past.

See Resumé Writing for some Resumé methodology and some hints on the layout.

Resumé Tip 2: Project a good timeline

Your Resumé is about what you have to offer in the future; you only use your past record to justify your claims to having valuable assets. Summarise the early stuff in your career and focus attention on whatever most powerfully justifies you for the job. Leave the job detail and your wonderful personality to the interview.

Resumé Tip 3: Focus on assets

Don't worry about the functional, the skill-based, the chronological and all the other versions of Resumé people talk about. Your mission is to find an effective way to showcase whatever assets you have that make you a strong candidate: this can be knowledge, experience, results, opinions about your performance, aspects of your vision, character or working methods.

Resumé Tip 4: Be positive in a professional way

Crazy claims and arrogance do not sit well with experienced recruiters who know enough about life to make up their own minds; the perfect tone to hit with your Resumé would be to make it sound like one experienced recruiter reporting to another. This means that it has the look and feel of comments about you, not claims by you. If you hit that tone you make a more authentic impression on the reader's conscious and unconscious awareness.

Resumé Tip 5: The subtle results that really measure you

It's great if your Resumé can shout success like 'planned new sales initiative that achieved 150% of target and led to adoption of methods by centers across the organisation…" But not everyone will have such visible results, especially during an economic downturn. No need for despair: you can highlight all sorts of less obvious achievements when you describe your recent jobs and roles within each job; how about these to get you going:

  • "...saved the company over 10% on its most important supply contracts through..."
  • "...initiated the first company forum on quality standards..."

Resumé Tip 6: Leave them wondering

Some people write Resumés so brief they do nothing but shout their headline claims to fame. Other people get stalled on trying to tell the reader everything. The right mix is to give them just enough to start believing in what you have to offer, leaving them plenty to ask when they interview. If you achieve that, you effectively set up the questions they are going to ask and you give yourself all the time in the world to prepare great answers.