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How tos on improving/updating/editing your resume
 

Few would deny that self-awareness is critical in optimizing our performance—whether we’re trying to ride a bike or coach a large team to overturn a period of stagnation in business. Endless literature backs up the benefits of pausing, meditating, reflecting, prioritizing, and in general improving our self-awareness. In fact, it is at the heart of everything from executive coaching to mindfulness retreats to your run-of-the-mill self-help books.

Have you mastered the art of telling concise, meaningful, high-impact stories in all of your career marketing communications?
 
Just as it can be a challenge to be objective about yourself and your career, it is equally difficult to “self-edit” the information you share with others during critical career transitions. It can all seem important because you’re so close to it. And you don’t want to omit something that might possibly be relevant, so the tendency is to share everything and trust your readers/listeners to sort out the gold.
 

Candidates tend to think too much about what a resume/CV needs to include (experience, accomplishments, etc.), that they forget about its real purpose. Your resume/CV is a tool that can help you begin a different role, a different career, or even a different life. The basic elements of a successful resume/CV are important, but will not be all you need to find your next opportunity. Focus on communicating your value and your brand foremost above simply getting the resume/CV formula right.
 

Says a candidate to the search consultant: “So, how do you like my CV?” The search consultant replies: “Well, I’m actually impressed. I have never seen a CV on a yellow sticky note before.”

While I personally have never actually received a curriculum vitae on a yellow sticky note, I have had many memorable instances regarding content included on CVs and the fact that some CVs caused me to endure endless time searching for content that was well hidden or not included at all. Composing a CV seems to be as subjective as selecting a personal clothing style, but there are some corporate guidelines you should consider. You might even find out that you have spent too much time on your CV in the past, but did not include the crucial facts.

If interviewing skills were offered as a course in college, it would likely not be a 100 level course or even one listed as a lecture series. One person could not stand up before a few dozen (or hundred) students and pontificate as to how one should go about interviewing; or even watch videos of previous interviews that have either won the job or gotten a harsh decline. No, interviewing skills are active and require an equally lively—even proactive—approach.

You’ve got the degrees, the highly sought-after skills, the years of leadership experience, and the impressive job titles to boot. You are armed with incredible success stories to delight and impress interviewers, but so far, your resume hasn’t garnered enough interest for you to be able to tell them in person.

If you’re beginning to wonder why your phone isn’t ringing, maybe it’s time to ask yourself if that resume of yours is effectively marketing you for the role you are seeking.

Your personal brand should showcase your professional achievements, define yourself as a leader, represent your values and aspirations, and set you apart from other executive candidates.

Learn how to build documents such as resumes/CVs, executive bios, and business cards that capture the eye of executive recruiters with this recorded panel discussion.

BlueSteps recently hosted an #ExecCareer Chat on the topic of executive resumes/CVs, featuring Albert Hiribarrondo, from Alspective Group, and Rainer Morita, from BlueSteps Executive Career Services.

Some of the questions asked included:

In today’s fast-paced job market, the average recruiter is only able to spend approximately 6.25 seconds looking at your resume. If your resume fails to make an impression in that time, you might be missing out on many executive career opportunities.

When was the last time you updated your executive resume? Is your resume keyword optimized?

Your resume is your professional story. At best, it is easy-to-skim, engaging, and provides the depth of information necessary to understand your value. A well-balanced mixture of contributions, achievements, and responsibilities, presented in the backdrop in which they were performed, can provide that depth of understanding.