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The Importance of Resume Focus

The Importance of  Resume Focus

January 12, 2010

Lack of focus is one of the most common errors people make on their resume, but a strong focus is critical to showing the employer that you match his or her needs. Your resume must clearly show:

a) What makes you valuable
b) How you will help potential employers

Identifying Unique Value Proposition

Most resumes don’t represent the living, breathing person who wrote them. Instead of expressing individuality and outlining the candidate’s personal accomplishments, they are often a bland recitation of standard phrases and pat descriptions. To get the attention of hiring managers, you need to bring yourself alive on the page and make him curious to meet you. You also need to express your unique value.

The first key is to identify your value proposition. What is it about you that sets you apart from everyone else? If you’re like most people, you can’t answer this question off the top of your head. You haven’t spent a lot of time sitting around analyzing yourself and your performance because you’ve been too busy. But if you want a resume that really gets results, you need to do some serious thinking. To get started, answer the following questions:

  • 1) What are your top 5 personal qualities? (Give a specific example of a time you used these skills)
  • 2) What are your top 5 professional abilities? (Give a specific example of a time you used these skills)

Finish these sentences:

  • I have always been really good at
  • Other people always compliment me on
  • If I could do anything at all with my life I would
  • At work, I am happiest when
  • At work, I am unhappy when

If you look back over your career, do you see any consistent themes? (for example, you always seem to be the one organizing everything, or you’re always the one who has the creative ideas)

Now go through your answers to these questions and highlight key words that you feel describe you and the impact you’ve made on your employers.

How Will You Help Potential Employers?

Employers hire people to improve their business or organization. Their only concern when they read your resume is how you will do that. In order to show employers that you can solve their problems or make their business more successful, you have to understand their needs. This mean you need to identify those issues and problems that employers are looking to solve.

But how do you know what problems employers are facing? Well, if you currently work in the same industry and are simply changing companies, you know because you work in a similar environment every day.

Poll: How do you feel about crying at work?

Poll: How do you feel about crying at work?