Resumes have been the gold standard in painting the picture of your work history, your education and providing a narrative around why you should be hired. Nowadays, job seekers are using even more embellishments to stand out such as different colored paper and unusual fonts.
The best way to land an interview is to use your resume to tell such a compelling story about you that you become irresistible to a potential employer. An effective resume balances relevant keywords while building a story around you. Remember, the primary job of your resume is to get you an interview. Let’s get started.
Define Your Goals
As you prepare to write your resume, focus on a singular goal. Organize every other part of your resume around this central goal, but remember that you will only be using the goal to create the resume. For example, your goal may be to get a job in management or outside sales. Begin with that goal and create an outline. Just like when you were writing a paper in college. You typically would start with some sort of outline to craft the rest of the paper. The same is true with your resume. Use this outline to organize your work history and experience.
Use Experience to Support Your Goals
Take the goal that you’ve come up with and make sure that your experiences provide support that you can meet this goal. Strategically explain each of these supporting experiences throughout the resume as you demonstrate your career progression. Each step is a building block in your work history.
Highlighting your strengths will create a buzz and excitement for the hiring manager by showing you are the best person for this position. Their problem is the currently open position. The position is open for a reason. The company may be experiencing growth or the previous individual wasn’t up to the task. Regardless of the reason, your research of the company should uncover clues as to what that reason might be. Your job is to be the solution to that problem. Present your strengths in a way that will tackle their issues head on.
Develop Your Sales Pitch
Use networking events to practice and perfect your sales pitch. In this current environment, you literally have a few minutes to make the case for why you’re the right person for the job. Make every one of those seconds count. The most common question at any networking event is..”so what do you do?” Instead of firing back with some canned response, be prepared to tell a story that will generate interest in you. Being the most interesting person in the room will lead to a future meeting where they can get to learn a little bit more about you.
You can begin to land interviews by telling a story in your resume. Engage the reader and make them want to learn more about you. That interest that’s building will make the hiring manager pick up the phone and call to you to learn more about this person behind the resume.