Category: Resume Tips

Creative Professionals Express Yourself

by Betsy Thayer

Your resume is a reflection of yourself, whether it be a clean, neat layout with a professional tone; or a talent profile reflecting your specific capabilities.   Most professional resumes should only use neutral colors, with focus on a clean layout.  Creative professionals have a little more leeway with design or color.

For example, a graphic artist could include a logo or an original design layout.  An artist could include a small sample of their artwork as a header or footer.  Other professions are not left out completely; watermarks are becoming a popular distinction as well (Hint: do not make it so distracting that no one will take it seriously).  Creative professionals such as artists, photographers and the like benefit from a visually appealing sample of their ability.  After all, the resume is showcasing their talents.

One benefit to hiring a Professional Resume Writer is content editing.  Creative professionals might have a great original design for their resume, but content might be lacking.  The advantage of a Professional Resume Writer is the third-party review.  The writer can take a good resume and make it great!

Include References on a Resume?

by Betsy Thayer

Listing references at the bottom of your resume may seem like a good idea.  It could show that you are helpful with information, anticipating the needs of the employer.  This however is a fallacy.  An employer would never contact a reference before meeting you.  Besides being a waste of time, law prohibits a potential employer from contacting references without written consent (Hint: This is the majority of the reason for filling out an application in addition to submitting a resume.  It is in your best interest to fill out the form in its ENTIRETY; it is a good reflection on you).

It is best to list people that you have worked with or know professionally, avoid listing family or friends if possible.  Make sure to ask and inform possible references, and making a copy of your resume available to them if necessary.  It is perfectly acceptable to write References available upon request at the bottom of your resume.

It is imperative, however to bring a listing of references with you to the interview.  You can provide the interviewer with a clean and professional, typed list.  It looks even better if it is the same style as your resume.  Provide all necessary contact information including e-mail, which is becoming the preferred method of contact.

Resume Objective?

by Betsy Thayer

When deciding whether to include an objective in your resume there are a few things to consider.   You can have a well written statement within your resume describing your targeted job or specific duties that you desire or another possibility is to use your cover letter as your objective.  Your cover letter can address the points of your objective while clearly stating the job that you are looking for.

Eliminating the objective from the body of your resume could put you at an advantage.  Having a general job objective forces you to be too broad, narrowing your focus.   Hiring managers could disqualify you from a potential position based on a narrow objective.   The cover letter provides more space to be detailed about what you are looking for.  You can then specifically tailor each cover letter for the specific job you are applying.

Some professions typically do not use an objective.  Highly competitive positions such as mass communication or journalism require a different style thereby eliminating the need for typical formats.  You can research which resume style is appropriate or a resume professional can suggest proper formats.

The additional benefit of outlining specific job objectives in the cover letter is the opportunity to show that you have done your research on the company and you are serious candidate.  (Hint: While researching the company for KEYWORDS and job details, jot down questions for interview).

Write Your Resume For The Job You Want

by Betsy Thayer

The first thing to consider when looking for a job is what your resume projects in terms of ability, focus, and objective.  Your resume is the first example of your ability to do work, it should be PERFECT.  If you have any misspellings, the person reading your resume will know you are not thorough.

If you have limited experience in the area you want to pursue, try adding experience (Hint: for example, you don’t have to get paid to do something in order to include it on your resume.  It is about experience.  Take a class, start a blog, create a project, etc.).

Focus your resume so you get what you ask for.  If you generalize, you could miss out on an important opportunity.  If you have done your homework you already have specific KEYWORDS in place and have an idea of what HR managers are looking for.  Check out job descriptions and resumes for people in the position(s) you want.

The objective is not just a heading on your resume.  The objective is the overall tone, what your resume implies about you.  If you have a creative format and you avoided cliches you will stand out as a potential employee.  Keep the wording concise and driven.

It is difficult to write your own resume for a couple of reasons.  First, you need to step back and look at yourself objectively; this can be hard for some (this is where a professional resume writer can help).  You need to remember your achievements; these are much more enticing than duties.  This is where the big picture is helpful.   If you have less content with just achievements, rather than a 2-page resume with duties and mundane details, you have a more powerful resume.