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Writing A Resume That Tells YOUR Story — Q&A

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First, I would like to thank you and everyone who attended my live class, “Writing A Resume That Tells Your Story,” and those who have since watched the replay.

As a follow-up, I felt it important to address some questions that went unanswered during the live Q&A session. There were many great questions and below are a selection of a few that would be beneficial to the widest audience. I look forward to continuing to answer your questions and speak with you during your personal consultation calls.

Q. What are replacements for “results-driven,” “proven track-record,” etc.?

A. The replacements for these clichéd terms are the concrete achievements, facts, and numbers that clearly illustrate what your “results” and “track-record” actually are. It’s the difference between telling the reader you have a, “proven track-record in growing sales” versus you have “grown sales at least 20% across all roles to date.” Don’t hide your results behind buzzwords, put them in plain view.

Q. How do you deal with longer periods of unemployment on your resume? If you have kept busy during doing volunteer work and/or other activities, should you highlight this in your experience section, or in a separate volunteer section?

A. Volunteer work can and should be listed on your resume if you are unemployed, as it keeps your resume “active.” Fair or unfair, employers treat unemployed candidates with stigma, so an active resume is a good defense. In an ideal world, your volunteer activities can or even should draw on business related skills (e.g. managing a sizable budget, planning/organizing a large-scale event, training, etc.) to enable easy inclusion in your resume.

The volunteer experience should at least be significant regarding time spent and/or level of responsibility, if not relevant to your professional work. If you have been unemployed for a long(er) period of time, it may be beneficial to list the volunteer work in your experience section to have the critical “ MM/YY – Present” at the top of your resume. If you have been unemployed for a short(er) period, you can consider including it in a “volunteer experience” or “additional information” section.

Q. Can you repeat the 3 categories of transferrable skills?

A. In trying to describe your accomplishments from a current job in a manner that shows parallels to a different role or industry, demonstrating transferrable skills are the bridge for any perceived gaps. The 3 broad skill categories are:

  • People: no matter the role, we all deal with people in
    • Customers/clients (customer service/relationship building etc.)
    • Colleagues/team members (at or around your level)
    • Direct reports
    • Superiors
  • Information: though the data between roles may be different, there may be parallels to how it’s analyzed, used, or manipulated
    • Financial information (budgets, sales, etc.)
    • Customer/client data (databases, metrics, demographics, etc.)
    • Inventories
  • Things:
    • Consumer goods/products
    • Commodities

I hope these responses will be helpful to you.

If you have more questions to ask specific to your situation, please email resumes@ivyexec.com or better yet, click here to schedule a 15-minute consultation to discuss your resume and/or learn more about how our resume writing services can support  you. I look forward to connecting with you!

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