Compiling the Necessary Information to Include on Your Resume
PUTTING TOGETHER AN awesome resume is an extremely important part of the overall job-search process. This short document needs to capture the attention of an employer quickly and then demonstrate, in no uncertain terms, that you're a qualified candidate for the job. Your resume needs to summarize who you are, what you know, what skills you have, what you've already accomplished professionally; list your career goals; and demonstrate why you should be hired.
Some people think a resume can be thrown together in a matter of minutes, because it's often only one page and typically uses bulleted points or sentence fragments. A resume is actually a rather complex document to create, however, because it has to convey key information in a limited amount of space. Anyone who doesn't invest the necessary time and energy to write an outstanding resume will most likely have a difficult time landing a job. When it comes to writing a resume, there are simply no shortcuts.
What a resume says is as important as how it's said and how the overall document looks from a visual standpoint. This chapter helps you determine what information you need to include in your resume. Later, once you know what needs to be said, this book will help you determine the best way to convey that information. Later chapters also help you choose the best resume format to meet your individual needs, select the best possible wording, and then format your resume so that it looks professional.
For now, don't worry about specific wording, resume format, or anything else. Simply focus on what information you believe needs to be conveyed within your resume. The following questions will help you summarize your skills, educational background, professional accomplishments, past work experience, career objectives, and other information you need to tell a potential employer.
"Remember to ask yourself why your potential employer needs you specifically. What can you bring to the job that no one else can? Make sure to emphasize your best skills and accomplishments that come naturally and make you unique."
Once you gather this information, you will later condense it, choose what's important, and decide the best way to convey it. As you answer the questions in this chapter, however, use complete sentences and spend whatever time is necessary to gather the specific information requested, such as dates or other pieces of information that will be pertinent later when actually creating your resume.
Be brutally honest with yourself as you respond to these questions. With accurate information, you will better determine what types of job opportunities to pursue, evaluate the offers you receive, and ultimately choose the best career path to follow.
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