Thread: Resume Guidance
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Old 23 June 2014, 13:10
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Joe723 Joe723 is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Indiana
Posts: 849
I had never looked for a job until I was in my early 40’s. My first self-written resume sucked. I just did not know what I was doing and I did not know how to promote myself. In fact, I came from a background where self-promotion was frowned upon and real accomplishment given respect.
This learning came hard for me. I read a number of books and generated a number of drafts. Eventually, I came out with an acceptable resume. Still, I had a hard time with self-promotion.

After a while I landed an interesting position working for two elderly brothers, one former White House Chief of Staff and the other a retired intelligence officer turned senior executive (think of the movie Trading Places).
Five years later, I knew it was time to move on. This time I hired a professional writer and it was well worth it. I obtained a very good job right away. It made all the difference in the world.

Some of the things I learned from the resume writers:
1. The first step is to plan out your campaign.
2. What are your objectives? Job, level, compensation etc.
3. Review your career in reverse chronological order.
3.1. Quantify your results and responsibilities with numbers. Improvements, percentages, dollars saved, budgets managed, etc. In my case, I generated spreadsheets for my last few jobs with all the numbers, improvements in dollars and percentages.
3.2. Responsibilities, Job titles etc
4. What are your key differentiators? Are you a proven leader? Great at data analysis? Marketing wiz? Well rounded? Strategic planner? What are your key attributes that set you apart and define your style?
5. Generate a list of key words that can be laced into your resume to be caught by resume word scanners. For example; Global competitive strategy, Operations management, Marketing strategy, Asia, China, Thailand, Eastern Europe, Start-up, Key account teams, etc.
6. You may want to set up some examples of situations along the lines of the SES Executive Core Quality statement: Challenge, Context, Action, and Result. It’s a very good way to show how you have dealt with situations and delivered the goods. I really like their format even as an exercise in defining some of your past wins and how they happened.

As you get more senior, the professional career consultant, resume writer, interview trainer etc. becomes more and more important. The resume writer will know how to work with a military background. You are up against some highly polished pros. They may have substantially less capability than you have and they very well may be self-centered douchbags but they know how to look good on paper and present themselves as brilliant managers. If you are on this board there is a high probability that you will be able to deliver authentic leadership and organizational improvement. That is something that is becoming rare in todays work world.
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