How good is your resume? How do you know for sure?
After you post your resume on the web,
does your phone start ringing?
If not, it’s worthless!
“Resume: a written exaggeration of only the good things a person has done in the past, as well as a wish list of the qualities a person would like to have.”
– Bo Bennett
WHAT DOES “COMPELLING” MEAN?
Compelling means evoking interest and attention in a powerfully irresistible way. A Compelling Resume is one that is convincing, persuasive, and speaks in a language that every employer understands.
Employers spend a max of 20 seconds on a resume. If you cannot convey WIFM, “What’s In it For Me,” in those 20 seconds, your dead. Your goal is to grab the attention of recruiters and employers alike. And, for those who can do that, the results are more interviews, better job offers, and higher salaries.
How can you do that? That’s why I created this site. I do it by asking the right questions, distilling information, and drawing on years of experience as a professional resume writer with a passion for helping people find their true potential. And, as you follow this same step-by-step process, you can achieve these results.
Think of your resume as a movie trailer. Is your movie trailer exciting enough to make someone want to see the movie?
Is your resume compelling enough for someone to call you to know more?
Does your resume show your contributions to your employer’s goals, the solutions, and the full-range of skills you bring, or how your transferable skills apply to any industry? If not, then why would any employer in their right mind want to waste their time talking to you?
If not, then why would any employer in their right mind want to waste their time talking to you? Do a better job of selling your knowledge, skills, experience, achievements, attitude, and relationships than you’ve done in the past!
Your goal is to do a better job of selling your knowledge, skills, experience, achievements, attitude, and relationships from your past!
This is where I can help you.
Note: When building your resume, don’t tell me what you were responsible for – no one cares! Instead, tell me what you, or your team accomplished, finished, or made happen.
ASSESSING YOUR CURRENT RESUME
It must be abundantly clear to the reader what you’ve done previously to help your employer with his goals. If not, why would any employer waste his time interviewing you? He wouldn’t! An achievement rich resume is what gets you the phone call. From then on, you must speak contributions during both phone interviews and in person.
Scenario: I’ll now take you through the exact process I took my last client through to create his compelling resume. His name was John Brown. Before I started, I asked John for a copy of his resume. I assumed that his resume was a Good resume, at least to him.
Even though John had sixteen years of great experience, and just got his Master’s degree in Architecture, his resume (below) was in bad shape.
1111 Windsor Drive, Summit Mills, al 68654; 913.123.9876; email@example.com
Objective: to become an arkitect in a chalenging envirment
2004-Present: John’s Home Improvement Company, al – Owner, made home repairs
2002-2004: Schmidt Construction, wa – Construction Superintindant, managed several project
1994-2002: Albertsons Food Store, ca – Asistant Store Manager, assisted store managr in running the store
Education: Bachelor and Master in Arkitecture from alabama U
Ted Brown: 213.345.221
Joe Smith: 213.436.278
Ralph Burns: 213.45.6657
I was stunned by the quality of his resume, especially the misspellings, but I offered no critique at first. My only goal was to move his resume from being Good to Better. I just set it aside and began to ask John the following questions, while I took notes.
Without looking at your resume, record your answers to the following questions. Then, compare your answers to your current resume, and we’ll see if there’s a difference.
Here are the questions I asked John.
Have you ever helped an Employer…?
Make more money by:
- Selling more products or services?
- Bringing in new customers?
- Selling more to the same customers?
- Discovering new uses for an old product?
- Finding new ways to bring more money in the door?
Save money by:
- Getting a better price from a supplier?
- Being more efficient?
- Saving time?
Better use of what they already have by:
- Process improvement?
- Reducing the time required?
- Becoming more efficient or doing more with less?
- Better maintaining to extend service life?
- Finding a better, quicker, or easier way?
Solve problems today to save $$$ tomorrow by:
- Creating important policies and procedures?
- Creating better contracts?
- Managing risk better?
- Ensuring the right insurance is in force?
- Ensuring compliance with outside agencies?
- Creating better physical and cyber security procedures?
- Creating better property accountability procedures?
- Eliminating unsafe conditions?
What do you do (What function did it perform)?
- What Standards Of Excellence did you have to meet or exceed?
- How did your Leader measure this?
- How did your work compare to others or to previous years?
- How did your results compare to others?
- How did your results compare to previous years?
Are you getting better over time?
- What did your Leader give you for being the best or for improving?
- What got better because you were there?
What work experience are you most proud?
- Brag a little!
- Make more money or save money?
- Better use what they already have?
- Solve problems today to save $$$ tomorrow?
- Achieve, sustain, or exceed your goals?
- Most difficult task?
- Best results?
- Why are you leaving out the details?
How important was this task you’re proud of?
- How many people were involved?
- How complicated was the task?
- How much money was involved?
- Were you on a tight time deadline?
- With whom did you have to coordinate?
- Was there any risk of failure?
- If it wasn’t easy, tell me why?
- Why’re you so proud of this?
Have you ever supervised the efforts of others?
- How many?
- Who were they?
- What was the problem?
- What actions were taken by you or your team?
- What were the quantifiable results?
How difficult was this task and why?
- Don’t leave out the details!
- How complex was the task?
- How big was the budget?
- What obstacles did you have to overcome?
- How difficult was it?
- Talk gross, total annual cost?
- How many people were involved (directly/indirectly)?
- What were the consequences of failure?
Have you ever:
Why would anyone want to hire you?
- What do you bring to the table?
- What would others say about you?
- Can you be counted on to produce excellent results?
- Don’t leave out the details!
What do you do best?
- Received favorable comments?
- Receive praise?
- Did people came to you for advice or help?
- Received awards or special recognition?
- What’re your special gifts?
- What gets you out of bed in the morning?
After asking these questions, I had two full pages of great material; even though I had to drag it out of John – kicking and screaming! I then asked John, why wasn’t all this in your resume? He just stared at me with his mouth open. I again asked, why did you leave it out? Again, silence and a dumb look on his face.
The sad truth is that most people have no clue how
valuable they are to a potential employer.
I then asked the killer question, “John, how does this make you feel?” He was obviously stunned by what had just happened. It took a while for it to sink in and he finally said, “Wow! I had no idea all that should be in my resume.”
Do you still think your resume’s great? This may help explain why you’re not getting called for interviews. Your resume is just not compelling enough to generate the call.
With the two full pages of notes I took from questioning John, I now had great Positive Cash Flow content that I could add to his Good resume to make it Better. However, my next goal was to take his resume from Better to Best.
Note: When building your resume, don’t tell me what you were responsible for – no one cares! Instead, tell me what you, or your team, actually accomplished, finished, or made happen. What got better because you were there?
What follows next is the exact process I used to produce the best compelling resume possible for John to make his phone ring more frequently.
BUILDING YOUR COMPELLING RESUME
“Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions.
All life is an experiment.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
Any Compelling Resume consists of these seven levels:
LEVEL 1: HEADING
I started building John’s new resume, from top to bottom, one level at a time.
1111 Windsor Drive, Summit Mills, AL 68654; 913.123.9876; firstname.lastname@example.org
If your email address is email@example.com, go to Yahoo or Google and sign up for a free email address with your name only. You want to project a professional image. Details matter!
Boldface and enlarge your name to make it stand out. Use a phone number that you’ll actually answer and change your voicemail to a more professional message, if necessary.
LEVEL 2: POSITION TITLES
I asked John what position title he was seeking (right from his Focus Statement). He wanted to be a Design and Build Architect.
Design and Build Architect
Most resumes have an Objective paragraph, which doesn’t specifically state what you want to do. These titles come from your search Focus Statement. Clearly state what you want to do. Don’t let the reader guess what you want to do.
LEVEL 3: KEYWORDS FOR SCANNING
Since John had no clue what his keywords might be, I did a quick web search for a generic job description of an Architect. Keywords can also be assumed, if you know the industry. If you were the employer, what would you be seeking?
Ensure you own these keywords because the employer will verify that you do. Keywords tend to be nouns that are industry-specific qualifications, skills, or terms. Some keywords include degrees or certifications, job titles, computer lingo, industry jargon, product names, company names and professional organizations. You can also identify keywords by visiting company websites and reviewing job postings.
Employers often search job banks looking for resumes with keywords or requirements specific to their job description. Including more keywords throughout your online resume will increase your chances of being identified as a potential match. Also, use keywords in any description of yourself which most job sites require.
Be careful with Acronyms and Abbreviations:
Every industry has their own unique set of jargon, acronyms, and abbreviations; the special language that only industry insiders understand. Unfortunately, not everyone reading your resume will understand them, especially if you’re applying for positions outside your industry. A good rule is to always define your jargon, acronym, or abbreviation the first time it appears in any document.
As an example, in John’s original resume he had ICF and SIP. In his final resume, you’ll find Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF), and Structure Insulated Panel Systems (SIPS).
The importance of the Job Description:
There are two types of job descriptions; the generic job description from a web search to give you keywords for adding to your resume and the employer’s specific job description found in job postings (which is used for applying for posted positions and for interviewing). From searching the web for Architect Job Description, I found the following generic job description:
Researches, plans, designs, and administers building projects for clients, applying knowledge of design, construction procedures, zoning and building codes, and building materials: Consults with client to determine functional and spatial requirements of new structure or renovation, and prepares information regarding design, specifications, materials, color, equipment, estimated costs, and construction time.
Plans layout of project and integrates engineering elements into unified design for client review and approval.
Prepares scale drawings and contract documents for building contractors. Represents client in obtaining bids and awarding construction contracts. Administers construction contracts and conducts periodic on-site observation of work during construction to monitor compliance with plans. May prepare operating and maintenance manuals, studies, and reports. May use computer-assisted design software and equipment to prepare project designs and plans. May direct activities of workers engaged in preparing drawings and specification documents.
Verify ownership of your KeyWords:
To be continued: If you’d like to learn more about building your three Special Purpose Resumes to assist you in your Job Search, you can do so by adding this book to your professional library, today!
Executive Coach reveals Job Searching SECRETS Employer’s don’t want you to know about who gets called for job interviews and who gets hired.
Here you’ll learn:
1: WHAT EVERY COMPANY MUST HAVE TO SURVIVE
2: WHAT VALUE DO YOU BRING TO AN EMPLOYER?
3: WHAT ARE YOUR ASSETS & LIABILITIES?
4: WHAT’S YOUR SEARCH FOCUS?
5: ASSESSING YOUR CURRENT RESUME
6: BUILDING YOUR COMPELLING RESUME
7: 19+ PROVEN WAYS TO GET THE INTERVIEW
8: INTERVIEWING TO RECEIVE THE JOB OFFER
9: NEGOTIATING TO RECEIVE THE HIGHEST OFFER
10: ASSESSING YOUR JOB SEARCH
11: CHANGING CAREERS?
In just a few minutes, you can own your copy of this book, and begin using what you learn to find your NEW JOB tomorrow.
Also, if you feel this information could help someone else, please take a few moments to let them know. If it turns out to make a difference in their life, they’ll be forever grateful to you – as will I.
Let’s make a difference together – one person at a time!
All the best!
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