Can a Stranger Read Your Resume?

Found this great advice in a newsletter from TheLadders today.

Can a stranger read your resume?

Print out your resume. Take the top third and rip it off. Hand it to somebody you don’t know.

Can they tell you, without asking you any additional questions, what you want to do next?

For too many of my subscribers, the answer is no. The reason is that you’re trying to do the wrong thing with the top third of your resume. You’re trying to tell people about your character and your abilities and your many, many different skills and your flexibility and too many things!

You know what the person who is reading your resume is trying to find out?

“Does this gal, or guy, want this job that I have to fill?”

Obviously, given that you’ve spent the time to create a resume and send it to them, they know you want a job. But do you want this particular job?

Is it something that you’ve done before? If so, did you like it? If so, do you want to do it again?

Because you spend all of your time with yourself, it seems so very obvious that you want the type of job that you’re looking for.

But strangers don’t know that. And, chances are, you’ll most likely be hired by a stranger.

So it’s important that you make it easy for people who don’t know you.

Show them, at the very top of your resume, what job you want.

If they can’t tell, by reading the top-third of your resume, what you want to do next, then you’re never going to get to the next step.