When You’re Applying to a Company That’s Stuck in the “Resume Rut”

The traditional resume is all about you, not what you can do for the company. That’s why we encourage Early to Risers to send out “sales letters” instead, highlighting how you can increase profits, improve customer service, etc.

But some companies are stuck in the “resume rut” and require job candidates to provide one. In that case, our recommendation is to use your “sales letter” as a cover letter – and make sure your enclosed resume is not cluttered with junk like this:

1. Your photo. It has become trendy to include a photo in a resume – but it’s unprofessional. The HR department isn’t casting you in a movie.

2. Descriptions of your “traits.” Nobody cares if you are “a team player” or a “hard worker.” That’s assumed. Use the limited space you have in a resume for experience and measurable accomplishments.

3. Your ability to use Word and other basic programs. That, too, is assumed. And, unless you are applying for the typing pool, nobody cares how fast you can type.

4. A third – or even second – page. If you’re fairly new to the workforce, one page is enough. (You can leave off your college job at the Burger Hut.) If you have considerable experience, two pages is okay.

(Source: U.S. News and World Report)

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