Whether you are just out of school, or have been working for years, it is helpful sometimes to sit down and think about what a resume is, before you start writing one.

Everyone will have their own view of what a resume is. I consider it to be a sales pitch. You are trying to ‘sell’ yourself to an employer, so they will hire you, instead of any of the other applicants whose applications come across the hr department’s desk.

And all the ‘usual’ rules of making a sales pitch apply –

  • Grab attention within the first 30 seconds.
  • Truth in advertising.
  • Show what makes you different from the competition
  • Tell them about the need that you can fill.

It’s important to keep these points in mind when you are writing your resume – they tell you a lot about what and how you should write it.

Grab attention – make your resume visually interesting, and your resume objective compelling.

Truth in advertising – do no exaggerate or lie about your experiences or abilities.

What makes you different – you are a unique person, not a collection of job data, let your potential employer see that person.

The need – they wouldn’t be hiring if they didn’t have a need to fill – what is that need and how will you fill it? (BTW – if they are hiring a customer service representative, they don’t need a customer service representative, they need excellent customer service that will encourage repeat business and promote good word of mouth about the company.)