(....You're Not Seriously Handing That Out, Are You?)
I met with a client recently who had such poise and determination to move forward into her next career. She explained away the Fortune 500’s she had worked for and delicately took out her resume, (on beautiful, thick paper and placed it in front of me. She explained, “I paid a company $400 for this resume.”
I knew what would happen next, (which is what always happens when people pay mega bucks for a company that has no idea WHO they are create a resume stating they are corporate gods.)
Part of being a career consultant and coach is that my emotions must never get the better of me, (when consoling someone, or in wide-eyed confusion over a single sheet of paper.) This resume was an abomination to all resumes. If it was the end of the world and she had to fit everything on one sheet of paper or die, I might have understood the tactic.
In truth, however, that wasn’t the reason of my shock. Here she was, a former Fortune 500 marketing director, an international ‘guru’ of media and her resume stated NOTHING about her brand. Not one LinkedIn connection, nor a Twitter profile that she claimed to have ‘expert’ knowledge of. In truth: She was nowhere on this sheet of paper. Except when she stated she was a ‘brand and Social Media expert,’ which caused great alarm as I saw HER brand and Social Media expertise nowhere on the page.
There is a point when I teach about Social Media or Resumes in which I ask my class to raise their hand and promise to include WHO THEY ARE on their resume, instead of WHAT THEY WANT. If I see one more objective which, (always politely,) explains that they’d like, “An exciting position within an established company,” I’m going to demand a cultural change.
I’m going to tell you something that’s going to be difficult to hear, because I care- and this will move you ahead farther than someone patting your hand and telling you that you CAN DO IT, (which is irrelevant- because we both know YOU CAN.) It's time to find your accomplishments, and fast. You're up against a clock and other job seekers who have figured out the winning recipe before you. Get to it!
It happens: You lost your job and suddenly lost the sense of WHO YOU ARE. Most importantly: You forgot what made you tick with passion. There you are steering a boat without oars, or driving a car without a steering wheel. You’re giving your power to everyone else and that, is exactly why you’re not only unemployed- but floundering for someone to tell you that jumping on one foot is perhaps the most amazing thing you can do. There’s no room for a pre-school complex in the job search.
Hard to hear? It’s true. You’re better than this and we can both agree on that.
An Objective should not be a statement of what you want. You’re not shopping for a job, or writing a personal ad for a mate. Everyone wants a job. An objective is no longer a way to state you are the forerunner for the position. You’re selling YOURSELF short by not stating the following:
You Are: Who are you in the business sense? Do your major accomplishments fit with the hiring company? If so, make sure to state a very abbreviated example.
What Do You value: Your passions, or values speak directly to who you are. When your values align with a potential company’s there is that ‘Je ne sais quoi’ that will make the company NOTICE.
By answering the question, “Who Values Me” in your Summary, or Objective, you’ll be able to give them immediate REASONS for hiring you, instead of asking for their permission to be invited in.
Companies that charge ridiculous, (and frankly should be illegal,) amounts of money to ‘re-tweak’ your resume have no idea who you are. In fact? They will probably never ask you the questions you should be asking yourself. Take out a sheet of paper. Answer the following four questions and you’ll see what I mean.
1. What was your favorite position? Why?
2. What position did you like least? Why?
3. Name your dream job:
- Name the tasks you would be doing, the environment you would be working with and your ideal boss.
The skills or tasks from our favorite jobs are usually the ones we are best at accomplishing. Can you name some skills that you are identifying as repetitive in your career history that you can highlight under your accomplishments? Find you, and the employer will follow.
Kate-Madonna Hindes is a recognized and sought after public speaker and writer on Social Media and Passion for the Job Search. Her blog, www.girlmeetsgeek.com recently has garnered praise for showcasing strength in times of transition with humor, “voracious insight,” and a “human perspective.”