Part of the Words can Make or Break You series.
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I love reading resumes. I have perused hundreds to find the right person who would work in a stressful, high chaos job. Resumes are a window into what a person has accomplished. It also shows the person’s ability to organize, be detail oriented, communicate, and how much effort they are willing to put into something important.
I will provide you with a few real resume excerpts that impressed me, some that were poorly written, and some that were absolutely hilarious. All of this information may help you better understand how well your own resume looks in the eyes of a potential employer. Hopefully, you can also see what needs improvement. If not, drop me a line and I’d be happy to give a few pointers: Sarah@hellofantasticday.com
Resumes generally have four parts – The Introduction Sentence – Work Experience – Skills – College or Training Degrees. If you’re really good you’ll provide a couple recommendation letters as well. I always enjoy those.
There is no specific way you should template these out. In fact, the less words and the more conciseness, the better. Employers want to get to the point – Are you what we want or not?
So, let’s get to the entertainment, shall we?
Here are some of my favorites:
Did you catch it? “Ability to function within high level of ambiguity.” It makes me laugh every time I read it. So clever yet confusing – What does it really mean? Well, if you’ve ever had to work in an environment where policies are always changing, seasons create new challenges, people are getting hired and fire, and guests (aka customers) are NOT always right (that’s another post though), then you understand.
This one is a bit drawn out. First, I’d try coming up with a catchier title than “Laborer/Helper”. Perhaps “Assistant Manager” or even “Project Foreman” would be imaginative enough. Then this applicant’s greatest accomplishment at their job was “I would say just being able to give my boss a hand”. Too wordy and not specific enough. I hope everyone gives their boss a hand…that’s our job, right? Otherwise, I wouldn’t need a resume, I’d be the boss.
But let’s pick on someone else, shall we?
Aside from the horrible grammar here, I appreciate that this person can stand for long periods of time.
Maybe I’m the only one, but did anyone else learn about parallelism? If not, now is the time, because it makes a HUGE difference. When you are listing things off, please for the love of Peter, make sure you start each item with the same part of speech — Such as all verbs, all adverbs or adjectives followed by a verb. Examples always help — Here are my skills:
- Creating drama in the workplace.
- Providing horrible customer service.
- Offering nothing special at all.
- Developing tension between employees.
Do you see how each item started with a verb. Verbs are so strong – Use them!! Parallelism creates a neatness when reading and your future employer will call you rather than pass you by.
Hopefully we have all learned a little something here.
Comment with your feedback about the content I write – What you’d like to see or learn about would be a great place to start!
Next time, I’m thinking we will do a Video Blog…A Vlog? About various smell issues I’ve come across at work. Tune in next week!