Girl Talk Career Blog

May 14, 2010

Writin’ A Rockin’ Resume

Filed under: career worthy — lisalahey @ 11:36 am
Tags: , , , , ,

Where do I begin?  Just about everything that can be stated about the importance of a great resume and how to write one has been done.  However reiteration is important.  How do I know this?  As a teacher I know for a fact that seldom do we learn something by having it stated once and then repeated once.  Usually it takes a few times for new facts to sink in. When they do and we change our way of thinking about something or at least adjust it in a significant manner that’s known as assimilation.  I got that info from a psychology information series on About.com.  Cool.

At any rate today Girlfriend you and I shall examine some oft repeat truisms about writing a rockin’ resume just to recap.  Resumes matter.  They really do.  In fact once I learned a few tricks of the trade about resume writing from reading HR mags and watching youtube videos I adopted a few resume tips including one about a functional resume. This clueless HR administrator insisted that a functional resume, unlike a chronological resume, didn’t have to list jobs by most recent to last. So I took that advice and an HR recruiter contacted me to tell me my resume confused her.  She couldn’t tell if I was employed or not by the way I laid out my resume. Yet she took the time to email me and ask me to clear up the confusion and re-send it.  Incredible! I argue that my error caused this woman to contact me just to see if I was from Neptune.  That said, I have decided to put a spin on writing a rockin’ resume. I shall make up my own rules and Girlfriend it is entirely your call as to whether you intend to heed or ignore my ….er…. unique advice.

Thus far here is my own first unique rule for writing a rockin’ resume: confuse the HR manager.  Leave her scratching her head and thinking “huh?” Not in a grade school kind of way mind you. Don’t have an entire page of typos and lame grammar. That’s just overkill.  Use enough confusion to make that person stew over your information until she needs to pop a tylenol and go to bed early. 

Loads of people insist that a great resume uses key words from the job description in order to catch the recruiter’s eye and make it stand out.  Now it has occurred to me that if I’m taking this approach so is everyone else. How does that make your resume stand out?  It doesn’t. It makes it blend.  Hence have a thesaurus handy and come up with as many infrequent and non-keywords as possible.  For instance take this generic job description I happened across on David Alpin Recruiting the other day:

  • Reception including answering, transferring all phone calls, voicemail
  • typing,
  • coordinating meetings,
  • creating presentations
  • Invoicing
  • Filing
  • Copying/scanning/faxing documents
  • Ordering office supplies
  • Sorting mail daily

In response, unique rule number two is to include as many foreign, non-keywords in your resume as you can. In the meantime, let’s just see if I get a bite from David et al:

Reacted to people, including  come back and relocating and giving a ring, engaged in typography, synchronized summits, crafted productions, dispatched notes, maintained dossiers, duplicated and scrutinized manuscripts, bid for administrative centre sources and classified transmissions day by day.  PHEW!

I shall keep you posted.

Speaking of vocabulary another valuable yet in my opinion questionable piece of resume advice is to ban certain cliches from your resume vocabulary.  If you’d like to see the entire list, click here.

So here we go with unique rule number three.  Whatever you are supposed to ban from the resume, go ahead and ban it. However you must argue the opposite with all your heart.  To wit:

  1. I’m a team player.  Replace with  I’m terrible at team playing. I suck in sports. In fact physical education was my worst subject in school. I was always picked last and I am still traumatized over it.
  2. I have great communication skills. Replace with I can’t communicate very well at least that’s what my marriage counsellor said. That might be why my husband and I decided to split up again although personally I think me passing that STD to him last week might have had something to do with it.
  3. I have a proven track-record. Replace with Here we go with the sports thing again. Lookit, I told you I’m terrible at sports. The only proven record I’ve got is criminal.
  4. I’m a problem solver.  Replace with I’m a shit disturber.
  5. I assisted in X task. Add to it  and botched it all up.
  6. I have a strong work ethic. Add to it when anyone’s looking.
  7. I’m bottom-line focused.  Add to it  but I’m also a breast man.
  8. I’m responsible for X.  Replace with I’m supposed to be responsible for X but so far have managed to elude this responsibility.
  9. I’m self motivated.  Add to it when my boss insists on it.
  10. I’m accustomed to a fast-paced environment.  Add to it  I used to drive Formula One race cars.

And there you have it Girlfriend! Unique rules for writing a rockin’ resume. You probably won’t end up getting the job of course but then again, I never said anything about that at the beginning of this blog now did I?  Unless of course you want to work for Google.  Whole different ball game, Girlfriend. Then you probably should use the 3 unique rules of resume writing in this post. Happy Googling!

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