When it comes to things you’re excited about doing, sitting down to write your resume probably doesn’t make the top of the list. It’s a task that many people dread because they have no idea how to start or what to write. Resume writing doesn’t have to be difficult, but many people make it harder for themselves than it needs to be.
Here are a few ways you may be sabotaging your own efforts:
- You have no idea what type of job you want.
It’s really hard to write an effective resume when you don’t have a goal in mind. If you’re not sure whether you want to stay in the same general field or do something completely different, you may want to take some time to explore your interests and options before sitting down to write. Make sure you have at least a general idea of the type of job you want to apply for before you get started. Then you can focus your content on this objective.
- You’re trying to include too much information.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again – your resume is not an autobiography. It does not have to include every job you’ve ever held, project you’ve ever completed, and course you’ve ever taken. Focus on the past 10-15 years and pare down the information to that which is most relevant to the roles you’re applying for. That takes us back to number one: make sure you have some jobs in mind.
- You’re trying to pack in too many details.
It’s tough to write concise, powerful bullet points when you’re trying to tell the whole story in a line or two. Highlight the key points and achievements, convey the basic context, and move on. Tell enough to show results and attract a potential employer’s interest so they’ll want to interview you to learn more.
- You’re not asking for help.
For many people, writing about themselves and their accomplishments is not easy. What someone else sees as an achievement, you may just consider a normal part of your job. Asking for insight and input from others can help you better determine what to include on your resume and what might make you stand out from the competition. Don’t be afraid to ask others for help and pick their brains.