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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Resume Writing Tips

by Ann Abbott

Recently I was asked by a parent to give some advice on a student's draft of his resume. This person's child will graduate from college in May and look for a job, probably in sales. (That is a common first job.)

Although I'm not sharing the entire resume here, I still think that my comments can be helpful to anyone. And for the record, I always recommend Darcy Lear's services. They are very reasonably priced (it's a true investment), and the people she works with have great success.

Here's my message:


Show, don't tell

He needs verbs in his bullet points with real specific information. People are more interested in accomplishments than tasks. 

Quantify

Can he add numbers/data to his bullet points to give a more precise idea of what he accomplished?

Sales

He should do a search for qualities that employers seek in sales people. Off the top of my head I would imagine: willing to travel, not afraid to make cold calls, proactive, excellent record-keeping and organization. Those should be highlighted prominently. And, yes, if he applies for different types of jobs he needs to have slightly different resumes. It's a lot of work... 

Example

Change the bullet point that currently says "Designer profiles series/blog" to something like: 
"Contributed ten blog posts of designer profiles in one month. Cold called twenty prominent designers (50% acceptance; 10% Spanish-speakers), conducted telephone interviews, drafted posts, submitted to team for editing and posted final versions in WordPress on or before deadline."

Skills

Most of the skills should be eliminated by incorporating them into the "show, don't tell" bullet points.
I hope this is helpful. Definitely, Darcy can do a good job. I'm pretty amazed at the success rate for the people she works with. I just wish more of my students would invest in it--and it doesn't even cost that much.

Anyway, good luck! Resume writing takes more work than many people realize.

Ann

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