Resume Advice with Natural Flavors

By Erica Tew, CPRW

We’ve all seen hundreds of articles titled; “Never Use These 10 Words On Your Resume” or “Your Resume Is Failing Because Of This One Mistake!”  Sometimes, the best resume advice you can take is not taking every bit of resume advice.  Research, form your own conclusions, and see what works for hiring managers in your industry.  Don’t let this part of the job search overwhelm you when there is plenty of assistance available. Resume writing doesn’t have to be a nerve-wracking experience, and I’m going to share a few tips to get you started.  No gimmicks or lists, just advice (although, typing that, does feel gimmicky.)


Let’s just get started:

Always be Employer-Oriented

Whenever you write, think as if you are the employer.  Nothing is arbitrary, and any word must be worthwhile from a hiring manager’s perspective.  Don’t leave them wondering, “So what?  How is this good for me?”

{As an example, I was a former art student in college before switching majors.  Writing my first resume was a mash up of information from friends, relatives, and my own naive instincts.  The result was a three-page resume with an objective statement seeking something “rewarding and challenging” (gag) with a page and a half of art awards and information on my portfolio.  Completely irrelevant, but I was proud of it, and figured this was the stuff of quality resumes.  I was the more deceived.  Nonetheless, this experience taught me a valuable lesson…}

  • Relevant information targeted to the job for which you are applying far outweighs giving too much attention to any accomplishments from unrelated industries.

Get them at the Summary

I highly recommend using a targeted Headline followed by a Summary/Profile Statement to lead your resume.  As opposed to the old Objective, the Summary provides an opportunity to share a few sentences about how you fit the job opening.  This section falls within the first-third of the resume, and should be tailored for every job posting.

Typically this section is about 5-7 sentences long where you capture your unique selling points that speak to the employer’s needs.  The very first line must be your strongest out of the entire document.  When employers are only quickly browsing resumes, you have few opportunities to show them the impact hiring you can have on their organization.  Be bold!

Don’t fall into the easy habit of writing in generic resume-robot speak.  Be specific in what you can offer, and list more measurable, hard skills and achievements than potentially false soft skills.

Calling yourself a “Motivated team-player able to provide excellent customer service and learn new programs quickly,” does not offer as much hard evidence as, “Results-oriented Sales Manager with proven record of implementing cost-saving initiatives that increase revenue and customer satisfaction.”  If the hiring manager looks at nothing else- you will know they saw the overall picture of what you have to offer from that first line.

Suggestions to Get Started

Write out your work history in reverse chronological order, followed by any education, industry certifications, and relevant volunteer work.  If you stay within the same field, chances are, these sections will not change drastically from opening to opening.

To increase your marketability if applying within the same field- write about your accomplishments, not your day-to-day job duties.  Any time you won an award, streamlined a process, made or saved the company money- share that on your resume.

Providing a quick synopsis of work conditions for context can also help add to the achievements.  Explain the situation you were in, the action you took, and the results of this effort, without going into too much detail.

If there are only a few achievements, then provide details of your duties; the “how often/how many”s of each responsibility.  “Greeted customers and demonstrated products to close sales,” becomes the far more interesting:  “Greeted 100+ customers daily and demonstrated features and benefits of products to meet weekly quotas of $45,000.”

Confidence Building

Once these details are added, many job seekers feel more confident about pursuing their job search.  Too many people think, “Well I just worked, I did my job, I don’t have anything special to put on a resume,” but that’s far from the truth.  I hope you find this article helpful, and if you need any resume building assistance, feel free to connect with me and I can give you information to meet with a resume writer in your area!


About ericatew

Erica Tew is a Certified Professional Resume Writer and career advisor who creates workshops and programs for CT Job Seekers. She is a manager of CT Jobs Chat, a LinkedIn networking group for job seekers, recruiters, and career counselors. Follow her on twitter @ericatew .

One thought on “Resume Advice with Natural Flavors

  1. Pingback: Point me in the Right Direction! | Life's Ambition

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s