Staying Motivated
Secret 1
Secret 2
Secret 3

The Big Three
Bragging 101

The Resume Debate
Free 2 Change
Ready, Aim, Fire
5 Steps

October 13, 2009

Content is Critical

#2 of The Big Three: The Top Three Elements Every Resume Must Have...and Very Few Do!!

We all know that writing about yourself is tough.  Even gifted writers seek help with memoirs, business bios, CVs and resumes.  Add to that the pressure of the job search and it's no wonder people working on their resumes develop sudden urges to walk the dog, take out the garbage or call great-aunt Matilda.

Helping to relieve this stress is one key reason I launched Resume Room.  My aim is to help you relax and feel confident in the knowledge that your resume:

  • Includes the best of your talents, strengths and accomplishments,
  • Excludes anything that distracts from these,
  • Presents you in the most positive, professional way.

To ensure it does we focus on The Big Three -- the three elements integral to an effective resume: Format, Content and your Personal Profile.  In previous issues, we've explored how applying "format psychology" can help ensure that your resume gets noticed.  Now let's take a look at the "psychology of content."  

Understand the misunderstanding 
and you secure a powerful advantage. 

Myth: A resume is a list of company names, dates and job responsibilities through which recruiters and employers will wade in order to extrapolate an understanding of what you can do for them.

Wrong!  Recruiters and employers have stacks of resumes on their desks.  They have neither the time nor the inclination to undertake such an arduous task.  You must do the work for them.

Therefore, you must seize this exceptional opportunity to present not just facts and figures but outcomes and conclusions.

Choose wisely what to include and exclude from your resume because it determines how they will perceive you.  Use your resume to convince them that you - and you alone - can deliver a rare mix of qualities, mastery and proven success that will make a critical and positive difference to their firm.  Use it to paint a portrait of someone who will be an ideal fit, instantly productive, integral to the organization's future prosperity.

Here's how:

  • Accentuate Achievements with Actual Figures: Gone are the days when it suffices to state that you are a manager who managed a staff of 25.  Today, the interviews go to the manager who has reduced that staff by 30%, boosted its productivity by 75%, while simultaneously reducing customer complaints by 64%.  
  • Connect with Clarity:  When your readers understand what you do, they believe what you can do in the future.  Avoid unusual acronyms, company-specific project names and esoteric industry jargon -- especially in your job titles.  
  • Showcase your Specialties: If you've realized the same impressive goals in several positions, consider it a specialty you can offer your next employer.  Emphasize it in your summary and present it as a section heading on a skills-based resume.

These changes help ensure content that genuinely sets you apart and presents you as a proven achiever who can deliver results key to an organization's profitability.