Success Insights

Executive Resumes: It’s A Tool, Not A Magic BulletIt’s a bright sunny day here in Washington DC and despite our surprise snow “storm” on Monday, I believe that Spring is winning this battle…old man Winter, just give it up already, just let it go!

Today I want to talk about an important topic that is not new, but worth repeating again and again. You cannot talk about job search, career growth, career change, career transition or anything career related without touching upon the executive resume.

While there continues to be lively debates on video resumes, online profiles, and even the slow death of the resume, you will always need to summarize your career history, related achievements and qualifications. However, what needs to change is how you view the executive resume and its role in your career and job search success.

Imagine for second that your executive resume is a show-and-tell for employers and recruiters – it has to “sell” the right story, draw attention to the key points and position you as the best solution for any employers’ needs.

What the resume cannot do is guarantee any results for you…it’s a valuable tool, a critical resource and vital document in your career world, but it cannot control what happens or who you compete against in your career journey.

You want the resume to open doors, stimulate conversations, encourage connections and invite ongoing discussions…but always remember that it’s a tool, not a magic bullet.

  • If you are not getting any callbacks or interviews, take a step further and inquire why you were turned down, it’s not always a resume issue.
  • If your competition is more qualified, more affordable, more convenient for an employers future objectives, then it has nothing to do with the resume.
  • If you keep limiting your jobsearch to just online applications and available postings, you are competing against thousands so failure here does not always point to the resume.

Don’t get me wrong, if you keep getting interviews and job offers for the wrong type of positions then it’s a resume, but the resume like any other tool needs to be used effectively, efficiently and consistently through out your career.

You can have a lousy resume and get interviews because you used all internal contacts, right? Just like buying expensive cookware doesn’t guarantee you can make gourmet meals, an executive resume, on its own, can come with guaranteed results.

So how can you use your executive resume more effectively and strategically today?

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Abby Locke is an executive resume writer and career transformation coach who helps emerging leaders, executives and professional women to craft compelling career narratives and standout brand profiles.

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