How To Make My Resume Better (The Blunt Facts About What Really Matters And What Doesn’t)
A lot of you will email me and ask me to review your resume or cover letter. So, in this post, I’m going to talk about what I would do if I was going to review it.
The first thing I would need to know and what is the most important thing and how your resume and cover letter is actually just a small piece of the whole puzzle, for your success.
So stay tuned.
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The first thing I want to address is the facts.
I’ll want you to know when you come to me and ask me to review your resume and cover letter that I don’t really do this anymore, I only do it for paying clients who are working with me long-term.
I will want to know how many you’ve sent out and what your response rate has been.
I’ll want to know how you sent them in, was it through an automated system?
Do we know that anybody has seen the resume?
OR was it to a specific person directly?
I’ll want to know all the facts and the very concrete data.
And then I’ll be able to help you make an assessment as to whether or not we need to make tweaks or changes to your resume.
Because the job of your resume alone is to get you an interview, and a lot of the times my clients get interviews without the resume.
When you’re sending in the resume to a bunch of different places, either through a website or through an automated system, you can get discouraged very quickly without even knowing if anybody has seen it, right.
This information and these data are going to be very important in assessing whether or not you need to have more put on your resume or your resume tweaked.
Now there are always things that I encourage you to do, which will increase the response rate of your resume.
Because it’s basically a sales document, so if I’m creating a sales page to get you to buy a product, you are creating a sales page to get them to find out more about you.
It’s the same thing.
Obviously there’s going to be things that are going to work really well and things that are not going to work really well.
And so that’s where we get to determine what’s working and what’s not is by the results that you’re getting.
So, what are the facts?
I want you to ask yourself how many resumes have you sent out?
How did you send them in?
How many people do you know actually saw them?
And what kind of response are you getting?
Some people will come in and they’ll say I sent a whole bunch of resume’s out and I got no response.
I’m going to be like, how many specifically?
To what companies?
And how do you know if anybody saw them?
Because if you sent it in through an automated system, and you got an automatic rejection, or automatic response, nobody saw it.
That doesn’t really count, right?
Because your resume could have been 100% amazing.
And if nobody looked at it, it doesn’t matter. It’s not your resume that’s the problem, in that case, it’s your strategy, your method of getting your resume to the right person is the problem.
Facts versus drama.
A factual statement was, “I sent my resume to 10 companies and I got two replies.”
Right, and the more data we can get around that, the better.
Like which companies?
How were they submitted?
What kind of automated response did you get or lack of response did you get, right?
And a dramatic thing would be, I’ve sent my resume to a whole bunch of places, and I’ve nothing back, right.
So ambiguous, not very specific.
So that’s how I work.
And so what I’ve found is, is that your resume is often a technicality when you’re doing it the way that I recommend.
When we’re talking to people directly and we’re making connections with people directly in the right manner, and we’re looking to serve them and we’re focusing on them and we’re solving problems creatively, the resume is a formality.
Now there are things that make it look better, there are things that make it get more of a response.
And I will get into some of those things in this post as well.
But I want you to understand that spending a lot of money getting someone to redo your resume if you don’t have the proper strategy, is not going to be helpful.
Because I’ve seen that happen many, many times. People have their resume reviewed, rewritten, written for them and they still aren’t getting the results they want, they still don’t have their dream job.
They don’t have that result yet and they’re like, I don’t know what’s going on right, I have a great resume.
Yes, you might have a great resume, but that’s not the problem then.
And then, on the other hand, someone might have a great response made from their resume, but they might not be closing the interviews.
Right and if they’re not closing the interviews, then we know that your resume is doing a fine job of getting you that interview, but then your interview skills, your thoughts around your interview when you go in and the way that you’re showing up, could be the problem there instead, right.
So we have to access where you’re at, and what your specific challenge is.
Nothing is neither good nor bad, this is what I do, I help you solve these problems, right.
So no judgment, it’s totally fine.
I just want to give you some clarity on what you might be looking at and how you might be approaching it in the wrong way.
Because a lot of people come to me and they have kind of a misconception about what it is in their actual issue and why they’re not getting there.
My goal is to just help you with this.
Facts versus drama.
Make sure you’re separating out the facts and the drama, alright?
‘Cause it’s easy to get caught up in the drama, and then you’re like oh, nothings working and you get frustrated and then you quit.
Micro quit or quit.
By micro quitting I mean take a break for a while.
Be like I’m not going to apply for that job right now ’cause I didn’t get a response before from the other one, right.
Secondly, you want to be very clear on who you want to read your resume and be like yes, this is the perfect person that I want.
You don’t want to resume that appeals to everybody, and this is the problem that most people have, right.
And it’s just like in business, I don’t want to work with just anybody right, I want to work with a specific group of people.
You want to work for a specific organization that wants to hire you.
So you want to tailor your resume to be interesting to that manager, to that company.
And you want to show them how your skills fit specifically for them, and why you are the perfect person for them.
But the mistake that most people make, is they will write their resume to appeal to everybody and it will look like everybody’s resume.
It will say things like excellent oral and written communication skills, excellent results-oriented professional with a bottom-line orientation.
Excellent customer service skills, excellent computer skills. Skills in Microsoft Word, and Excel and you get my drift, right?
This resume looks the same to everybody and they’re not interesting.
They’re very boring.
Okay so as an HR Professional who screens lots of resumes, I can tell you they mostly look the same.
And I’m really bored. Like I don’t like screening resumes, it sucks.
When someone comes to me and they say, “I geek out in Google Analytics, I love finding the data, that’s going to give me the answers to make this advertising campaign a success.”
Just an example, I’m excited about that if I’m a marketing director and I want to hire someone who’s really into this stuff.
Your resume, you want it to excite somebody and then you want it to turn somebody else off, right.
The person that you’re not going to be mentored with, you want them to see it and be like, no, this person’s not for me.
I’ll use the marketing example.
If you, so there’s different areas of marketing, this is just a recent example, there’s an analytics and digging into all the analytics like Google, Facebook Ad, and numbers, conversion rates, Landing Page conversion, there’s that part of it.
And then there’s like the content creation and the blog. And having a blog that gets a bunch of comments and engagement because it’s so beautifully, creatively written and it strikes an emotion.
These are two completely different mindsets, right?
This person loves numbers and analytics, and this person loves creativity and they love to write creative blog posts.
The analytical person, if they are in a role, if they get stuck in a role where they have to write creative blog posts, they’re not going to probably have a lot of fun doing that.
You want to attract the person that you want to hire you because you love the same things, you geek out over the same things and you’re just a great fit for that position ’cause you’re so driven to see results because you just love what you’re doing.
And so when you’re trying to appeal to everyone, you don’t get that effect at all, right?
And that’s where an HR professional or someone on the other end reading resumes gets really confused and has no idea who they really need to talk to.
Right they’re like oh, everybody’s just saying the same thing.
If I say I’m a marketing director and I see somebody who’s like, oh I love to geek out in Google Analytics and you know, Facebook conversion rates on Ad’s, I’m like oh sweet, this is my personal right.
That’s very easy to pick out of a pile.
It’s like yes, I want to talk to that person immediately.
Stop trying to make your resume look like everybody else’s, there are enough people doing that, and if you have any of those lines on your resume, if you have, excellent written or oral communication skills, take that off, everybody has that. Make it unique, make it different.
Excellent customer service skills, take that off. Professional with the bottom-line orientation, we don’t care about that.
It’s just buzz words, it doesn’t mean anything, okay.
Use your brain, come up with some really creative things, and ask yourself, who am I really?
What do I love?
And why am I the perfect person for this job?
Okay, so I gave you an example there with the marketing analogy, and I encourage you to get creative and figure out what that means for you.
And that will give you so much better results with your resume and it will attract the exact right person that needs to hire you.
The third thing I wanted to talk about, was how was the resume sent, with what messaging? Another big mistake.
There’s a lot of mistakes that people make, is people will write it very ‘I’ focused.
Right, so very much about them.
Totally normal, totally human.
Not judging, just saying it’s not effective, okay.
When I get resumes, a lot of the time it’s going to be like I would like to use my skills to advance my career, to be able to achieve my goal.
Very roughly, that’s what people say, nothing wrong with that.
But I don’t care about your goal, I mean it’s just not communicated in a way that speaks to me.
When you can turn that around, frame it for how you’re going to help them.
For example, if you wanted to get a job at a company that did email marketing or you know, was a blogging company that you know, utilized SEO for their search you know, forgetting their traffic or take what the example is that you do, right, and what you’re really good at.
Get your brain thinking about what you could do for them.
How your specific skills could help them.
And the more concretely you can put that together, even if you’re not completely accurate ’cause you might have to guess a bit before you actually talk to them, and ask them questions about what they need and what they want to achieve, you are going to write from such a better place.
Because you are now thinking about them.
And they’re going to pay you money for the value that you’re going to contribute to them.
Put some thought into how you’re going to contribute to that value and why you’re the person to contribute that value among anybody else.
And that is going to set you head and shoulders above other people.
Don’t focus on yourself when you’re writing it, focus on them.
Okay, completely shift your focus.
And there are super creative ways to do this, I’ve seen it done a whole bunch of ways with a lot of success, and it’s a beautiful thing.
Because most people don’t do it, and as I said, I’m in HR and all the resumes we get are I want this, I’m hoping to achieve this, please help me with this, I, I, I, I, right?
Totally normal, but just not effective.
Just don’t do it.
There you have it.
Those are my tips for resume success, and if you’d like more information from me, my name is Natalie Fisher, I’m a career mindset coach, I can help you get your dream job in as little as 30 days.
I have a free workshop you can sign up for below, it’s called Get a Better Job in 30 Days.
I’m writing this post during our pandemic and I can help you do that.
And I’m also going to show you the exact resume and cover letter that has already achieved this result, and how it’s possible for you too.
If you are interested in that, click the link below to get signed up and I will see you on that training.
SIGN UP TO WATCH THE FREE WORKSHOP HERE
In this workshop:
- We’re going to go over the opportunities and how to get infinite opportunities, so you’ll never have to worry about where you are getting your next opportunity from.
- You going to find out how to crush your interviews and how to focus on what you can control to nail those interviews.
- Also, how to get a win no matter what, how to feel likeable, so whether they like you or they don’t, how you’re still going to feel intact, and how you’re still going to feel confident in yourself to keep going to ultimately get to your goal.
- We’re going to talk about mastering salary negotiations so that you can make the money that you want to make over the course of your lifetime. We’re talking five, ten years out, what is it that you want to be doing.
- You’re probably thinking pretty small right now if you’re like most people. I want to challenge you to think bigger.
- And the last thing we’re going to talk about setting up your promotion, so, the things you need to be focused on right now in order to get where you actually want to go.
If you’re interested in that, click the link below, you can get it immediately, you just have to enter your information, and It’ll be in your inbox.
SIGN UP TO WATCH THE FREE WORKSHOP HERE
Do you know one person who could benefit from the information in this post? If so, do your friend a favor and share this info with him/her.
And remember, the current system isn’t perfect, but you can outsmart it. I’m here to prove to you that you do have what it takes.
I’ll see you next time and I can’t wait!
In Work & Life
I’ve got your back
– XO Natalie