Today’s job market is more competitive than ever before. Your résumé has only one purpose: to get you in the door for an interview. Many people construct their résumés through computer programs or templates. While providing an easy place to get started, these programs don’t create the content you need to sell your qualifications. That part is up to you.
A modern résumé should be concise, easy-to-read, and full of potent, eye-catching statements that highlight your best skills and experience. Someone reading your résumé should be able to get a feel for your strengths and experience at a glance. While the methods for effectively incorporating your qualifications are wide and varied, here are some common résumé mistakes to watch out for:
Résumés should not include:
- Too much information. You don’t want to put the hiring authority to sleep by listing each and every job you’ve ever worked, every class you’ve attended, or your life story in jobs worked. Remember: the point of a résumé is to get an interview. Too many details can muddy up the highlights that will attract potential future employers. Strip away the unnecessary. Keep your résumé simple and to the point.
- Irrelevant experience. Your résumé should reflect each job you apply for. This means pooling together the best skills and experience relevant to the job you’re seeking. Avoid adding “fluff” material because you think it will make you look better. Try to word your skills and experience towards how you will benefit your potential future employer. Craft your skillset to reflect what is listed under the job description.
- Spelling or grammatical errors. This should be a “no-brainer” but is very commonplace. Misspelled words, incomplete sentences, and bad grammar tells potential employers that you either: (a) Aren’t very detail oriented -or- (b) Aren’t interested in presenting yourself as a competent communicator. Maybe words and grammar aren’t your specialty. But including proper spelling, punctuation, and well-composed sentences in your résumé gives you an advantage over those who don’t. It shows you care. It shows you want the job. It’s about credibility. It’s about presenting yourself in the best possible light so potential employers will want to bring you in for an interview.
- Embellishments or exagerrations. Be honest. Good résumé construction is all about highlighting your best, most relevant skills and experience. This does not mean including skills, experience, or education you haven’t earned. Don’t create false statements in your résumé you’ll have to awkwardly explain away later during an interview. State your qualifications in clear, straightforward language that matches the description of the job you’re applying for.
- Unusual fonts and formatting. The goal with your résumé is to give a potential employer a reason to call you for an interview. You’re trying to get their attention and stand out from the rest. But this doesn’t mean you should use flashy, hard-to-read fonts or formatting. Instead of enhancing your résumé, these can distract from what you’re trying to highlight: your qualifications. The more you make your résumé visually easy to digest, the more successful you will be at conveying your value to the hiring authority. Accomplish this by constructing a well-polished, one-page document where the highlights are your skills, rather than a showy font.
I’m here to help!
Constructing your résumé can be daunting, whether you have a scattering of unrelated work experiences, or if you have an embarassment of skills and talents to your name. My process is all about helping you get the job you deserve!
- I employ a methodology that utilizes copy editing, copywriting, and creative wordsmithing to construct a powerful résumé.
- Telling your story is at the heart of what I do. I will help bring out your best skills and experience to highlight on your résumé.
- Each job is different. I will personalize your résumé to reflect each job you’re applying for.
By presenting a sharp, potent résumé to future potential employers, you will be armed with a valuable tool to help get you that job you deserve. Contact me below so we can start telling your story!