If you’re like me, you can’t help feeling like the coming of the fall season is a new beginning. Those many years of school conditioned me to have that association. It’s a time for refocusing on our goals and to determine where we want to be before the year’s end. Perhaps you’ve enjoyed some summer vacation time, which has allowed you to slow down and reflect on the bigger picture of your career.
For many executives, it is a time to examine their career trajectory and take necessary steps to keep the momentum going, such as refreshing an outdated resume and beginning to explore “what’s out there”.
Depending on how long it has been, you may need more than a mere resume update. Ask yourself:
1. Does my executive resume position me for my new leadership aim?
In order to be effective, a resume must be written with your career objective in mind. If your career objective has changed since your last update—and in particular, if you are now aspiring to a higher level of leadership—your resume must be completely reframed to reflect your new target. Your older experience must be filtered, retaining only what is relevant to the new goal.
2. Does my executive resume speak to what companies in my industry need today?
To prepare your resume for a job search, you’ll also need to carefully examine the intersection between your marketable skills and the business pain that the companies in your industry are feeling TODAY—and create a compelling argument about how you plan to alleviate them. The exponential change that is being experienced across all industries will necessarily mean that if you in fact addressed these issues on a resume you were using five-plus years ago, it might be obsolete.
3. Is my executive resume design and layout fresh and modern, or is it a tired template from years ago?
You’ll want to consider the changing nature of reader attention spans in recent years—perhaps a smartphone effect. Unlike the resumes that were effective a decade or so ago, today’s resume must be highly skimmable: the lengthy paragraphs and long lists of bullets of yesterday fail to cater to today’s modern readers, so you’ll want to keep this in mind as you create your new layout. Steer clear of templates as these will only make you look like a cookie-cutter executive rather than send the message that you are unique.
If it has been years since you have brushed up your executive resume, you will likely need more than a quick update to put your best foot forward for a 2018-and-beyond executive job search. Seek the help of an executive resume writer if you have doubts about how to make your leadership experience shine in today’s market.