Does Your Executive Resume Generate Calls?

Early in your career a resume that proves you have experience may be enough to get you the job. Once you’ve reached the executive level, it’s not.

Once you’re at the executive level, or are targeting those roles, you need to demonstrate value.

The value you bring to a potential employer.

At this level, recruiters and employers won’t be impressed that you managed a team, even a large team. That’s expected.

Recruiters and hiring managers want to see the positive impact you’ve had on your current and previous employers. The impact you’ve had on your team, on your department, or across the company.

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How To Get Recruiters To Actually Read Your Resume

You may think that a recruiter or hiring manager will read your resume from top to bottom as soon as they receive it. They won’t.

You may also think that every, single, thing you’ve done over the last 20 years is important. It’s not.

Most readers will quickly scan your resume looking for information relevant to the job they are trying to fill.  A first read generally lasts only a few minutes. If your resume is 3-5 pages, they may not review the entire document.

In most cases, only if a recruiter or hiring manager likes what they’ve found on the initial scan will they read the entire resume.

While there are mixed opinions on how long a resume should be – no one’s resume needs to be seven or eight pages. Yes, when I was working as a recruiter I saw them. I still see them today.

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Do You Have A “Tombstone” Resume?

The best resumes, the ones that will get a hiring manager’s attention, are marketing documents. They are designed to sell you (the product) to a potential employer (the buyer).

They are not laundry lists of responsibilities. They are not boring employment histories. They don’t include every job you’ve ever had or every single thing you’ve done during your career.

That style of resume is sometimes called a “Tombstone” resume because it is directed towards the past, not the future.

Your future.

When you’re putting together your resume keep these 5 things in mind.

1) Your resume is a marketing tool. It’s not an employment history or a job application. While you should never lie or grossly exaggerate, you should frame the content in a way that sells you to a potential employer. Here’s why lies matter.

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How To Stand Out From Your Competition

If you’re planning to look for a new job in the next 6 months, it’s time to start working on your resume. Now. Whether you’ve decided to write it yourself or plan to hire a professional writer, it ALWAYS takes longer than you think it will.

Getting recruiters to notice you isn’t easy.

As a recruiter, most of the resumes I received were much like reverse-engineered job descriptions.  A few years later, the resumes I review as a resume writer are much the same. Even the resumes of C-level executives.

Under each job title, there are long, bulleted lists of job duties and responsibilities. Boring. To get an employer’s attention include a brief overview of each position followed by 3 to 5 bullets that demonstrate value.  These are things that stand out, things that had a direct impact on your team, department, maybe even the company.

Make sure to quantify your results whenever possible. You may think that saying you made millions of dollars for a company is impressive. But, it’s not. Employers want to see numbers. For example, the campaign you developed built your newsletter list by XX.

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6 Point Executive Resume Checklist

You may have heard of Marshall Goldsmith’s bestselling book What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful.

The truth is, it’s the same with resumes. The resume that generated interviews early in your career, won’t get you noticed once you reach the executive level.

The resume that listed your duties and responsibilities won’t impress recruiters and employers who are filling executive roles. Here is a 6 Point Checklist for developing an interview-generating, executive resume.

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2 Phrases That Will Sabotage Your Resume

34427005_sGenerally, there are two things that mark a not so great resume. Poor content and lack of style. While an eye-catching resume can help you stand out from the crowd, without compelling content it’s unlikely that anyone will be inspired to contact you.

The hallmark of most poorly written resumes are the phrases “responsible for” and “duties included.”

People mistakenly believe that saying that they are responsible for managing a team or running a department or overseeing a large sales territory will impress the reader.

Not so.

Being responsible for something doesn’t show impact.

For example, if you’re a VP of Sales you may be responsible for opening new markets. But, what does that actually mean?

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How To Give Your Boring Executive Resume Some Style

34014067_sThe first rule of resumes is that Content is KING! No matter how snazzy your resume looks, if your content doesn’t convey value it’s unlikely to generate job interviews.

That said, having a well formatted resume infused with some style can help set you apart from your competition.

When it comes to formatting, the biggest problem with DIY resumes is sloppiness.

This is often seen in inconsistent bullets, employment dates that have migrated across the page, and teeny, tiny or weird fonts that no one can read.

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How To Write A Resume That Generates Calls

phone_interviewThere are a several elements that make one resume more effective than another. First, a resume needs to grab the reader’s attention. It needs to present what the candidate has to offer right up front. It also needs to sell the candidate to the recruiter and hiring manager.

A 2012 study done by TheLadders found that you need to get a recruiters attention fast. The results of their eye-scanning study showed that recruiters made a yes or no decision in less than 6 seconds.

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