Writing a good resume is part art and part science. It takes creativity and attention to detail to craft a truly eye-catching CV, and there are no shortages of acceptable formats or structures. Different industries have their own unique standards for resumes and there is truly no one “right” font, format, or style. However, there are a few key concepts that are critical to delivering an impactful message, no matter how you choose to say it. These concepts can be summed up in just the five words below, words that you should be sure to include in your resume often!
Hiring managers are often looking to see how well you handle projects. To speak to this, try describing the times you have implemented something (it could be a new system, software, or a policy) within your organization. Detailing what implementations you have had the chance to drive and how you handled the task will give hiring managers an easy-to-grasp example of your experience delivering on hands-on projects.
In addition to your skills delivering on a project, hiring managers will also be reading your paperwork to determine how strategic and creative you can be. Not only do businesses need employees with a bias for action, they need thought leaders who can design and develop at a high level. Being able to articulate what you’ve designed – be it software you’ve built, a policy you wrote, or a new workflow system you drew up – will help your next boss understand what you’re capable of creating.
This is perhaps the most critical word to include in your resume. The unfortunate tendency of many job seekers is to write what amounts to a list of their job duties in their resume. Far more meaningful than what you were supposed to do, however, is what you actually did. Any time you can quantify or qualify your experience by showing the results of your efforts, make sure you do so. Showing hiring managers the results you can deliver will go a long way toward landing the job.
Leadership is yet another important trait sought after by hiring managers. Regardless of your industry, your role, or your education, leadership is crucial to advancing beyond a certain level in your career. Even if you don’t have direct leadership experience managing a team, being able to highlight the occasions on which you’ve displayed great leadership ability is important. If you can speak to initiatives you’ve led, teams you’ve directed, or individuals you’ve trained, be sure to do so wherever possible.
While leadership is certainly important, it’s not everything. Equally as crucial to success in a role is the ability to collaborate and work within teams. It is one thing to give direction and take charge, but a much different skill set is needed to work collaboratively or manage “horizontally.” If you can give examples of working cross-functionally within an organization, partnering with others, or driving business objectives as a group, it is important to highlight that experience as well.
These five words will supercharge your resume, regardless of what industry you’re in, the level you’ve attained in your career, or your unique career aspirations. These terms allow you to best highlight your most desirable skills in a way that shows hiring managers your potential, your experience, and your strengths without bogging them down with lengthy lists or long-winded examples.
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