How to Write an Effective Resume

Philosophy: Employers will spend 5 seconds scanning a resume to see if a candidate is qualified for a position. They’ll check location, tenure, and specific qualifications (skills, licenses, degrees, etc.). If you pass the five second test, so to speak, then they will start reading. In order to “stop” them from scanning, and to get them to read, you need to begin the resume with “Selected Accomplishments,” 5-6 bullet points highlighting verifiable achievements that tell the employer that you can do the job because you’ve done the job! NEVER include an “Objective” (your objective is to get the job you’re apply for, so why have an “Objective?”), or a “Professional Summary.” No employer cares how great you think you are! By listing media citations, speaking engagements, and awards/honors, you’ll tell the employer that others think you are great. That is what has value.

Name

City, State of Residence

Phone Number – E-mail Address

Selected Accomplishments

  • 5-6 bullet points that emphasize what you have achieved for others

Work Experience

Name of Employer, Location of Employer, Dates of Employment (Most Recent First), Title, Two-three line summary describing the employer, what they do, the size of the company, etc.

  • Bullet points highlighting the key responsibilities

Education

Degrees from accredited schools.

Continuing Professional Education

List any courses taken from non-accredited schools/programs or accredited schools where degrees were not awarded.

Licenses and Certifications

Skills and Languages

Media Citations

Speaking Engagements

Awards and Honors

Professional Memberships

Volunteerism/Community Service

The length of the resume should be at least one page for every 10 years of employment but content is more important than length. A lousy one-page resume will not be read, while a brilliant 10-page resume will.

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Don’t forget to take advantage of my year-end career counseling special. Come January, it will be gone!

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