Does your resume make it hard to see the most important facts?
Facts would be nice
Even job seekers with great experience hide their best qualities. Here are a few ways they do it.
No facts, just brag
Do you say, “I am wonderful, amazing, lovable, creative, entertaining, and good????”.
Stephen King, author of more than 30 best selling horror books, wrote a book on writing. He says, “Get rid of adjectives.” This top author refuse to write, “She stealthily crept down the spooky staircase which creaked ominously.” Instead of using adjectives, he just tells what his character does, “She crept down the stairs.” He says the toughest thing he has to do in his writing is to remove all the adjectives. Just give the facts.
Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. (Mark Twain)
You say what everyone else also says
I’m still waiting to see a resume that states: “I hate to work hard. I disrupt every team. I am a pig. I never take initiative. I lie constantly. I never hit my deadlines.”
I actually get that have half a page that states: “I work hard. I am a team player. I am neat. I take initiative. I am honest. I do assignments on time.” Those paragraphs never give me any facts, so I don’t read them.
Set yourself apart
What I really want to know is: What is different because you were there?
Set yourself apart from the other 40 people applying for a job. Use every inch of your resume to state things you have actually done. State facts like:
I carried a beeper and was on-call for 3 years.
I worked late for two months to help a different team finish the Simpson Project.
I received an award for having the neatest desk.
I kept our biggest customer from losing $500,000 by shipping their widgets overnight, without being authorized to, because my boss was on vacation.
I estimated my last project at 715 hours and completed it in 690 hours at $4,000 under budget.
Think about what your new boss REALLY wants
Would you rather hire someone who says, “I work hard” or someone who says, “I carried a beeper and was on-call for 3 years”?
If you write your resume like Stephen King writes his novels, you’ll get more interviews. Give the facts about what you’ve done. Let the hiring manager use a red pen to add comments to your resume like: hard worker, takes initiative and hits deadlines.
Something To Do Today
Grab your resume and a ruler. How many inches of text describe you without giving facts? Many resumes have more hot air than facts. Literally.
As fast as you can, cut your resume down to nothing but facts. Add facts in bullet points. Don’t worry about the relevance of the facts. Act quickly. See if you can create a long “facts only” resume in less than half an hour.
Now take a break until tomorrow. Then fix that resume so that it can be used.
Soon: Wrestlers in feather boas
Later: Corrections – a newborn’s grasp