Tuesday, January 8, 2008

7 Deadly Sins of résumé writing

  1. Pride:
    Résumés may proudly represent your successes, but back them up with numbers so those reading your résumé can understand how you were able to accomplish your professional successes. It is key to be proud of your accomplishments without taking credit for the entire team’s work. It is not a good idea to include photos of yourself in the résumé, unless you are acting or modeling.

  2. Envy:
    Résumés should never mention you did your boss’s job on a regular basis or acting “Acting Vice President” because you did all the work anyway. Be humble. The truth will come out in the interview. Too many acronyms can immediately get your resume in the circular file if the HR person reviewing it cannot understand your successes. Spell out acronyms at least the first time if they are uncommon.

  3. Anger:
    Résumé writing must be completed without emotion. Even if you were fired, mistreated or sexually harassed. There is no place for this information in a résumé. Keep it to yourself. Focus on the good things, your successes.

  4. Greed: It is important that a résumé not list any sort of salary requirement. A cover letter could mention a range only if required. If you are forced to give a salary requirement, give a $10,000 range to an employer.

  5. Sloth (laziness): Be sure that you articulate how you made a difference specific to your background. Do not use a friend’s résumé with the same title with your company. It is uncommon for a position to be exactly the same as another person’s. Take the time to make your résumé strong and based on your personal information.

  6. Gluttony: Do not take all the credit for projects you worked on in your résumé. Give credit where credit is due. You will be called on this exaggerated information in the interview most of the time.

  7. Lust: The only place in a résumé where lust could come through to a reader is in the e-mail address. Many people put e-mail addresses that are inappropriate for a résumé (making sexual references in one way or another). Be sure that your e-mail is professional.

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