Do NOT write a novel and call it a resume!

I repeat: Do NOT write a novel and call it a resume!

Too many people make this mistake. They want to write this wordy, drawn-out thesis outlining their life story and their career aspirations. They have all these skills and accomplishments and they want to include them all in there somewhere. The problem is, most people just don’t know when to stop.

A resume is a marketing tool, people. Any effective marketing tool not only gets the message across, but it also leaves the reader wanting to know more. A good resume will do just that. It will answer the most pertinent questions up front, but it will also prompt the hiring manager into action – that action, of course, being a phone call to you to set up an interview. And that’s your time to shine. That’s the appropriate venue to provide them with the nitty-gritty details of your background.

So my advice is to highlight only those aspects of your background which are most applicable for the job, or types of jobs, you are planning to apply for. And use a one-sentence Objective Statement as your intro, nothing more. No paragraphs. In fact, there shouldn’t be paragraphs anywhere in your resume. Bullets and brevity, that’s the way to go!

To sum up, you don’t want to intimidate a hiring manager by giving them the book of the month to read. Keep it on point and steer clear of the narrative-style intros…for your own sake!

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