Writing a Resume 10 Things to Avoid

Writing a Resume

10 Things to Avoid Putting on Your Resume

Writing a resume is hard.  For every job you seek, another resume has to be written.  Finding a specific job involves writing a resume selling yourself for that position.  The thing is when your writing a resume to compete against thousands of other Americans who are trying to land a good (or any) job, you need to know how to set yourself apart from the masses.  Many look into the things to do when writing a resume, but what about the things not to do?  Many people spend quite some time writing a resume,  however most find themselves so exhausted at the end of the process they simply move on, forgetting a resume needs reworking.

Universal tips for writing a resume

As a manager who has had to do some hiring as part of my occupation, I have had the unfortunate experience of having to sort through resumes, and many of which were less-than-professional looking.

Here are the top 10 tips that should help anyone that is writing a resume:

#1: Have someone else look it over so they can check for spelling or grammar issues. Do not just rely on the spell checker. Nothing sets off alarms of problematic employees more than a resume that shows that the individual doesn’t take the time to fix typos.

#2: Personalize it. I have received many generic resumes that only tell me that the applicant does not care—they just want a job and will put minimal time into getting one. Make the hiring manager feel like their business is important, needed, or at least desired for their own life’s ambitions or goals.

#3: Have an objective. State why you want this position and why you would be the best person for the job.

#4:  Emphasize great work experiences, if any, and leave out jobs that may not be relevant or at all impressive. Yes, I have reviewed resumes of people that wrote how they were a cashier at Taco Bell. Perhaps this would be good if they were applying to be, say, a cashier—but my business had nothing to do with handing money, customer service, or even tacos.

#5: Be careful about writing a resume that shows your age. If you are 50+ and most of your competition is straight out of college, do some research on the company to see if they hire older people.  Remember writing a resume means framing yourself as an experienced individual, who stands out because of their talent, not age.

#6: If you email it, make it a PDF. Dot not use rtf, html, doc, or embedded with the email. Make it a PDF unless told otherwise, period.

#7: Show that you are a good writer. If you are not a good writer, use bullet points or some way to make it at least pleasing to the eye.

#8: Have professional references. Don’t just put the standard “references available on request” because this makes it look generic. If employers want references they will ask.

#9: Pre-digest your information; boil it down to keywords related to essential skills and abilities. These can be as basic as sales, marketing, client relations, target marketing, project management, budget planning or forecasting. Once you have these items, group similar words together and list your level of proficiency.  For example if your writing a resume to paint a picture of your assets try these sentences on for size.

  • Skilled in machine shop management and operations, including staff training, procedure planning, safety training and team leadership.
  • Perform customer service and troubleshooting in a professional manner; coordinate vendors, suppliers and contractors; oversee contracts, pricing and inventories. (courtesy AOL jobs)

#10: Act like this is just not “another job” but something that you really want. This may sound silly but it is unbelievable how many people seem to just not give a damn.

While networking is probably the best way to get job, a great resume can make a significant difference between you and the other guy who has similar qualifications. Especially for these hard times, we cannot afford to make mistakes like spelling and grammar problems when writing a resume. We need to always keep in mind that the “little things” in writing a resume, can make or break chances to gaining that gig.




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