- Create a compelling format.
First of all, know your industry and adjust accordingly. For instance, you can take more creative license as
a marketing or sales executive than you can as an insurance or finance executive. Once you determine
your industry’s comfort level with design, as well as your own, create something that “pops” while not going
overboard. You don’t need fancy graphics programs to design a great looking resume. You might be surprised by how
much you can do with Word! For instance, use edge-to-edge design, different backgrounds (with discretion), color saturation variations,
etc. Include a little smart art if appropriate – it’s all in Word – or create a chart in Excel and paste that into
your resume. Include plenty of white space, as text-dense resumes are not well-received. Print it out before
sending – and run it by some colleagues in your industry for their opinion.
- Watch your language!
Use smart word choices, dynamic and varied verbs, and good sentence structure. No misspellings or runon
sentences please! Many hiring managers will dismiss a resume out of hand for a single grammatical
error. And if they start getting bored because you started every bullet with the verb “led” or “managed,” you
could lose them fast.
- Deliver “power and punch.”
Keep the reader engaged. Pack your executive resume with measurable achievements – metrics and
concrete/tangible results. Also, deliver a clear description of the scope of your responsibilities. Share your
CAR (Challenge/Action/Result), PAR (Problem/Action/Result) or STAR (Situation/Task/Action/Result)
stories that show how you have tackle challenges and what results you have created. These
accomplishments will demonstrate what you’re capable of creating for your next company.
- Convey your Unique Selling Proposition (USP).
Tell us what makes you stand out as opposed to anyone else applying for this position. Do this in the first
few lines of your resume! Don’t be scared of selling yourself by dropping names and numbers directly into
your resume summary. Make yourself shine!
- Put yourself in the employee’s shoes.
Imagine yourself reading your resume as your future employer. What would you be looking for? Would you
As someone reading a resume, you would of course want to see some of the keywords that are essential to
the position. That’s just the basics. Once that threshold is past, is this resume enjoyable to read? Do you
have to squint to read it? Are you bored? Do you really get who this person is and the difference they could
make for your company? Be rigorous in asking – and answering – these questions.
- Do your homework.
As the time to write your new resume approaches, start looking for formats and content that you like. When
you come across something that impresses you, put it in a file on your computer. You can use this file
whether you create your own resume or hire someone to do it. At The Essay Expert, we will always be
happy to create the type of format you like. I believe any good resume writing company will do that, while
steering you gently in the right direction.
By Brenda Bernstein