Why I’m not a Cult-Follower of the Resume’-5 Step Resume Intervention
I woke up this morning with a deep need to be cynical about the importance everyone puts on the resume’. The resume’ has reached almost a celebrity status = more important than it really is. I think this feeling is the result of too much exposure this week to people seriously groping around for anything that will help them get employed. I even had someone get frustrated with my input on their resume’, as it seemed to contradict what another person told them. I think that tells the story completely. There are as many versions of a resume’ as there are people that they represent and as many or more people with opinions on how to construct them.
Granted, I’m doing a series of Teleseminars on resume’s at the moment, but right up front, I tell everyone that there is no mystique or mystery to the resume’. The resume’ is also not the crown jewel to the job search strategy. I think I’m getting frustrated with how so many people are treating it as if it were the end all, be all. It’s not. It’s a document. It’s only one of many working parts to a good job search strategy.
In my teleseminar, I give 15 tips to creating a good resume’, but today I’m going to unload on what I see to be the issues with the people who are so uptight about their resume’s.
- Not clear about the job you are seeking – I just wrote an article about this, so I’m not going into detail, but I see so many people not really clear about the specific job they are pursuing. If you’re not clear, neither is your resume’. Solution: Get clear, and then construct your resume’.
- Not ready to commit yourself in your resume’. – I have seen resume’s and have asked their owners what kind of job they were going after. The two things didn’t match. I see this with people who are often ambivalent about what they are pursuing, because they really don’t want to go after the job they just did or the one they are talking about. They may simply not be willing to narrow down the choices to 2-3 specific jobs. The issues with this are: 1- your resume is wimpy. It lacks commitment. 2- If you lack this much commitment on your resume’ and in your heart, it shows. No hiring manager wants to hire someone who really doesn’t want to do the job or doesn’t know what they want to do. Solution: Pursue jobs you really want to do, then write your resume’ to match.
- Stop asking everyone’s opinion – It doesn’t matter whether you’re asking about your resume’ or your newest hot date – at some point, you have to stop asking what other people think. The reason is that everyone will have a different opinion and after you get enough of them, they will conflict. That conflict will only make you frustrated and confused. Solution: Ask a few people with background on the topic and stop there. Then make your own decisions about the “what” and the “how” of how you are going to construct your resume’. Remember, it’s your life, so it’s your decision. Then proceed with confidence. As an adult, you get to listen to these inputs, but you decide what works best for you and what helps you represent yourself the best.
- THERE IS NO PERFECT RESUME’ – Please, please, please understand this one at your core! There is no perfect or correct resume’. We don’t produce perfect anything. You can have resume’s that look professional, are easy to read and reflect the best of your background. That’s what you’re shooting for. Solution: Go the library and get a book on resume’s with loads of good examples, then emulate what you see with your information. It is that simple.
- Stop being so uptight about your resume’ – Remember I said earlier that the resume’ is only one of the many working parts of your job search. That means you have other actions you need to be taking in your job search that are equally important to landing a job. You need to keep all of those actions in balance. Don’t let the current environment lead you to believe that the resume’ is more important than it is. Also, you resume is never really “done”. It will be tweaked and changed to match specific companies and jobs you will be seeking. That’s ok. That’s how it work. Solution: Relax – you will create a fine resume but you also need to protect yourself for attitudes that don’t serve you. Stop reading the newspapers and listening to the news. Limit your exposure to other job seekers. You don’t need to hear things that make you feel negative or cause you to over-react. Do things to boost your self-confidence and attitude.
So there you are. I have read 1000’s of resume’s in my career. Most of them were just fine. All of them could be improved, if you asked. Just remember this: YOU are the crown jewel to your job search.
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