Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Resumes in Action! Writing an Active Resume

The hardest thing for me when I was on the job hunt was writing the resume and cover letter. I guess I felt so pressured to put on paper everything that a recruiter could possibly want to know about me and why I was qualified for the job. So when I recently came across a post on UltraJob Blog about action words to use on your resume, I thought this was a great idea to add some flare to your resume (and cover letter) without getting too crazy.

The whole purpose of a resume is to address and showcase your skills and abilities. A great question asked by Christopher in an interview with Rachel and Jon, authors of Resumes from Hell really showcases this:

Christopher: How can the job seeker personalize their resumes without making them too informal or becoming a parody of themselves?

Rachel: The only type of personal information a hiring manager wants to see on your resume is information that demonstrates how your skills will impact their bottom line.

And Jon agrees and adds,

I think people need to let go of the resume as an opportunity to "express themselves." Every resume is personalized because every person is different. But beyond that, the focus on a resume is presenting your experience in the best possible light. There is a level of creativity in that, but a resume is not meant to be as much fun as writing a poem or playing a guitar solo. The best resumes are written by people who accept that there are rules of the job search that are to be adhered to.
However, I think that adhering to good writing techniques, such as using action verbs instead of passive verbs will not only sound better but can better convey what you actually DO and can do. (Plus it's better grammar.) Here's a great list to help you get started.

- Rosie Reilman

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