When there seems to be a never-ending series of posts about resumes, why are they still so challenging to write and mostly ineffective?

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Answer: Ever since I began the blog, the topic I’ve written most about is resumes. That is because telling the best story you can about your talents is difficult. Perhaps, it is because you don’t know what they are or can’t explain them. Most professionals, no matter at what level, need help. Earlier this year, I published eight blog posts about creating a resume that effectively presents your experience and talents. Why are resumes so ineffective at convincing the reader to interview you? What questions do you have that you’d like me to answer? Here is a brochure that is an edited version of the posts I’ve written. http://www.jc-a.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/inDepth_Article_resumes-2018.pdf You …

How can a professional present her work history both in an interview and a resume when her job title is misleading or incomprehensible outside of her workplace? (#8 in the Series)

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Answer:  A reader’s question started me thinking about this challenge which is shared by many professionals.  “Most of my career (20+years) I’ve held the title of Manager. The roles as I’ve moved from organization to organization grew larger in scope with appropriately increasing responsibility and corresponding achievements. At this point in my career I’m ready to move up to a director level role. I was recently questioned about this and I’m not sure that my explanation cut it.” It is not only a question of giving a reasonable explanation in an interview. It is a question of how to present your work history in a resume first (to get the …

How are Diversity and Inclusion policies affecting hiring practices and resumes? (#7 in the Series)

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Answer:  In the 3rd posting of this resume series, I analyzed the impact of Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) policies on hiring practices. This, in turn, affects how candidates describe their qualifications in resumes and in every phase of the process.  I received very different responses to this analysis. Here is my perspective about these responses, #7 in the resume series, with additional insights into the impact of D&I policies. Separately, as a portend of how important this issue is, IBM is suing Microsoft for recruiting (e.g. stealing) its Chief Diversity Officer. The article states this is, “a case that elevates recruiting and promotion of an inclusive workforce to the level …

How do you describe your qualifications for a position at the VP, CCO level when what matters are the intangibles? (#6 in the Series)

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Answer:  You can list all your skills but every candidate can do the same. If you over-emphasize the tactics at the start of the resume, you will not get past the first round. The qualifications for the head of a function are about leadership, adding value to company officers and their direct reports. It is also about original problem solving, winning consensus for solutions and getting the work done. Building a team of excellent performers and having a visceral, instinctive sense about the culture of the organization that can be communicated to employees and stakeholders are essential capabilities but not often stated.  Here is #6 in the series about current …

With the trend toward highly tailored resumes and cover letters, what does it take to stand out and be taken seriously? (#5 in the Series)

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Answer:  What it takes to be seriously considered for a VP Comms position has changed as the jobs have become increasingly important to the leadership team. Bringing the wrong person on board can delay important initiatives by more than a year. That also means that the criteria for evaluating every exchange ranging from how you present yourself initially to how responsive you are to emails and calls is scrutinized. You can be eliminated from consideration for lack of attention, commitment and small errors of judgment. Knowing the bar has been raised challenges a candidate to invest time and attention to every aspect of the hiring process.  Here is #5 in …

What is the overall tone of your resume? What is the first impression it makes? (#4 in the Series)

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Answer:  Here are questions for you consider. What is the overall tone of your resume? When a hiring manager looks at your resume for the first time what is the visual impression it makes? As she starts to read it, how does she feel about your message? Is she struggling with the copy? Your unintended impression can be self-centered and the information incomplete. Or, you can succeed in delivering a very positive message. She can decide that the tone of your resume reflects how you perform. By the second paragraph she could decide she doesn’t like your resume and reject you. Or she could be feeling you are genuinely reaching …