People often put their goal or objective on the top of their resume.
They write things like:
“My goal is to be a project manager in a fast growing company at which I can contribute my people skills and forward thinking approach to projects.”
I stopped doing that kind of thing a few years ago.
Because everyone else can. Everyone on the planet can write fluffy words about what they’re going to do. That doesn’t separate you from the crowd. And, one time, the owner of one of the best ad agencies in the country chewed me out for having just such a statement at the beginning of my resume.
I’m sure I wrote something like:
I am passionate about advertising, creativity and the power to build amazing brand stories with great copywriting. I have deep levels of passion that blah blah blah.”
The CEO emailed me and told me, “Every single resume I have, every candidate we interview, tells me over and over again how passionate they are or creative or goal-orientated or anything else. I don’t care about that. I care about what you’ve actually accomplished. What have you done?”
I rewrote my resume that week. Instead of goals or objectives, I started each resume with a short paragraph titled, “Results.”
In less than 100 words, I summarized what I felt like I had accomplished that might be relevant to a certain job. With short, powerful sentences I laid out a tightly written paragraph. It said things like:
“One of the first writers hired by Staples.com. Broke Home Depot sales records. Wooed the Oprah Show with just four words. Won a national advertising award. More to come.”
And something weird happened when I did that. Recruiters and HR departments started asking me about the results. In some cases, they barely looked at the rest of my resume and would just say, “What were the four words that wooed the Oprah show?” or “What was it like to work at Home Depot?” No one had ever asked me about any of the useless sentences I had put in my “goals” paragraph.
Maybe it will be easy to write your accomplishments or results paragraph. But even if it’s not, I promise that you’ve done something interesting and important in your career. If you worked at a job for a year or two, I’m just talking about creating one interesting sentence from that whole experience. One year of work, one sentence. Anyone and I repeat, anyone, can do that.
Even if you’re a recent college grad just joining a new industry, you’ve got a sentence or two you could put in that paragraph that might generate questions, interest, and maybe even a job interview. You’ve got four years of college to pull a few sentences from.
Stop telling people what your objective is. Start telling people what your results are, and you just might be surprised what the result of your next job application is.
What’s one accomplishment you could put on your resume?