Posts Tagged ‘soft skills’

The Worst Resume Advice We’ve Ever Heard

Thursday, October 29th, 2015

We usually like to focus on positive advice regarding proper resume construction and distribution but every once in awhile, it’s important to cover the cautionary tales, the bad advice you don’t want to be listening to.

Not that advice has to be totally off the wall to be “bad”. In this case, we are not talking about the “singing telegram” resume or the resume made from chocolate custard or related madness.

Rather, over the years, we’ve had clients come to us and ask us all kinds of questions about advice they’ve heard in regards to resume writing. Some of this advice was on point, like the importance of personal branding, but some other advice was just subtly off-base and likely to lead to poor reception if implemented. Hopefully we can dispel some of the worst resume advice we’ve heard over the years in an effort to help you wade through the deluge of resume writing advice that has taken over the Internet.

Here it goes…

You should have an objective statement.

Objectives are self-serving and fail to show the employer how you can add value to their organization. Instead, put a job title at the top of the resume and follow with an impressive career summary.

You need to include and focus on soft skills.

Including and/or focusing too much attention on so-called “soft skills” in a resume is a waste of time and space. Statements like “excellent written and verbal communication”, “ability to multi-task”, “fast-paced environment”, “professionalism”, and so on are all overused and can apply to any job seeker on the market. Instead, focus on skills and abilities unique to you.

Your summary should be short and general.

A career summary doesn’t have to be boring and vague. Be specific to your accomplishments within the summary: use numbers, metrics, and answer questions like how much, how many, and how often.

Your resume should only be one page long.

Another bad piece of advice we’ve heard is that a resume can ONLY be one page long. How can executives with 20 years of experience fit all of their wonderful achievements and accomplishments onto one page? If you’re an entry-level candidate, you may only need one page but if you have 10+ years of experience, chances are you’re going to need more than a page to communicate all of that great information the employer is going to want to know.

So throw out these misguided notions on resume development and instead create an authentic representation of your career history that positions you well for your job search goals.

Original from Career Realism