How To Write A Good Resume
Writing a resume is hard work. You must write your resume correctly; it must be perfect! Any
blunders in your resume could cost you the job. The entire resume-writing process can be
confusing. We've all asked ourselves these questions: “Which information goes in?” “Which
stays out?” “How exactly should I format my resume?”
If you jumped into a pile of books and articles on how to write the perfect resume, you'd drown
in words, sentences and advice that all sound the same. So what in the world will make your
resume leap out of the pile and scream out, “Grab me! I am the person you want to hire!”
Your professional history will strongly dictate your resume format. We must choose one of three
basic resume types: chronological, functional or combination.
THE CHRONOLOGICAL RESUME
This is the most common type of resume, the one that comes to mind when the word is
mentioned. A chronological resume is appropriate if you've had steady work experience with
little to no breaks, have kept each of your jobs for long periods of time, or have industry-related
experience that shows your working toward a specific goal. The Chronological Resume is
Objective (which we'll discuss in a few paragraphs)
Employment history (starting from your most recent job)
Optional section (for things such as military experience or any special skills/interests
that may pertain to the job at hand)
THE FUNCTIONAL RESUME
A variation of the chronological resume, a functional resume intends to highlight skills found
outside of work experience; it's useful if you're in the process of changing careers, have little to
no work experience or have held several, seemingly unrelated jobs. This sort of resume is
Qualifications summary (a bulleted list of achievements or interests that qualify you
for the job for which you're applying).
THE COMBINATION RESUME
A combination resume is what it sounds like: a combination of the chronological and functional
formats. It tends to be slightly more useful than the functional resume, as that format sometimes
makes an employer suspicious that you're hiding something (such as a lack of experience). The
combination resume is comprised of:
Education (especially if it's a particularly strong area for you)
Employment history (in reverse order as the chronological resume)
2. Rethink Your Objective
Many books and articles extol the virtues of an objective; it is, after all, a great way to position
yourself within a job and show an employer what you want and how willing you are to get it. A
lot of job-seekers have been ditching the objective in favor of a qualifications summary, and
employers seem to be responding well. The reason for this is simple: objectives are, by nature,
focused heavily on you and not the employer. Your potential employer, while certainly interested
in what you want, is far more concerned with your qualifications and what you can do for the
The idea isn't all bad, though. It just needs a little tweaking. Instead of an objective, try creating
a positioning statement.; it functions on the same way as an objective but puts the focus on you.
Take a look at these examples:
Objective: To become an associate editor of children's books at a major publishing house.
Positioning Statement: Children's book editor with 10 years of experience in publishing.
These are loose examples, of course, but you get the idea; put the focus on you and the
employer will take notice.
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