It is a mistake to think of your resume as a history of your past, as a personal statement or as some sort of self expression. Sure, most of the content of any resume is focused on your job history. But write from the intention to create interest, to persuade the employer to call you. If you write with that goal, your final product will be very different than if you write to inform or catalog your job history.
Most people write a resume because everyone knows that you have to have one to get a job. They write their resume grudgingly, to fulfill this obligation. Writing the resume is only slightly above filling out income tax forms in the hierarchy of worldly delights. If you realize that a great resume can be your ticket to getting exactly the job you want, you may be able to muster some genuine enthusiasm for creating a real masterpiece, rather than the feeble products most people turn out.
The good news is that, with a little extra effort, you can create a resume that makes you really stand out as a superior candidate for a job you are seeking. Not one resume in a hundred follows the principles that stir the interest of prospective employers. So, even if you face fierce competition, with a well written resume you should be invited to interview more often than many people more qualified than you.
Set aside at least three hours (that’s an average length of time to complete a resume if all goes smoothly). Before you start, print out the following set of notes and tape it to your computer, on the wall next to your desk, or someplace where you’ll see it throughout the process.
Your resume is about your future; NOT your past.
It is not a confessional. In other words, you don’t have to tell all. Stick to what’s relevant and marketable.
Don’t write a list of job descriptions. Write achievements!
Promote only skills you enjoy using. Never write about things you don’t want to repeat.
Be honest. You can be creative, but don’t lie.