I have reviewed thousands of resumes as a career coach. I find that every resume provides clues about the person behind it and have a personality all on their own that may be a reflection of the author. Sometimes it’s spot on and other times unfortunately a false representation that often does not work in the job seeker’s favor. If I were to assess your resume it would be classified under at least one of the following four resume “personality types.”
This resume may appear neat and organized, but lacks content that highlights key skills and accomplishments. The position description is filled with job duties typically taken straight from the job description. This resume slacks…I mean lacks personality. The list of “skills” may include a lackluster set of soft skills such as “team player” or “hard worker” with little attention to significant relevant core competencies. It may include a statement like, “Review resumes and cover letters for grammar and spelling.” Although the statement may be accurate it’s BORING and reads “I just came to work and did my job.”
Move your resume from the slacker category by infusing your position description with relevant key skills that you have demonstrated while performing your duties along with key results to highlight your accomplishments. Example: Use keen attention to detail to review resumes and cover letters to provide personalized recommendations resulting in increased customer satisfaction. Here you have the formula skills + duties + accomplishments = something the reader can chew on. I’m dubbing this as the “sandwich method” where the skills are the bread slices, the duties serves as the meat of what you are responsible for and the accomplishments are the extras that make it oh-so-tasty.
Although it’s great to have diverse work experience and several different skill sets, stay clear from having the “general” resume. Appearing as “a jack of all trades” will give a recruiter a harder time identifying you as a match and the same goes with an application tracking system. This may result in your resume going into the proverbial “black hole.” If you are open to multiple career fields consider creating a resume tailored for each, highlighting core competencies related to the respective careers. If your last/current position isn't exactly reflective of your desired career path, I recommend creating a 1-3 line profile statement including your desired career path along with relevant key skills, experience, knowledge, and/or achievements that would serve as an asset.
Be sure to refer to the job posting to find keywords to inject into your resume where appropriate.
The Obnoxious Overachiever
This resume has a lot of great information, but instead of being a nice edible sandwich it’s the big fat hoagie that Cliff Huxtable used to live for. This is the type of resume that would give the recruiter heartburn and is typically longer than necessary. If your resume includes every training and certification you've ever completed, how many Girl Scout cookies you've sold, the trophy you coached the little league baseball team to win and then some, consider revising it for conciseness and relevance. Use the a job announcement as a guide to help you prioritize what is important.
This resume is the unicorn in the clouds and gets recruiters excited! It’s focused, yet provides sufficient details and includes keywords that will have your phone buzzing. The resume not only incorporates the sandwich method, but it’s prepared to the employer’s liking. Bring your to the ultimate personality type by incorporating the previous recommendations mentioned.
What is your resume’s personality type?