Give your resume a fresh review

Byby Ford R. Myers
Wednesday, November 18, 2015

SACRAMENTO (JobJournal) -- Many people ask me, "What are some quick and easy things I can do to enhance my resume and get better response?" To answer that question, I've compiled a list of common resume mistakes and 'quick fixes.'

and the reasons why these mistakes are so damaging

Typos and grammatical errors. These easily avoided gaffes show you're lazy, or not detail-oriented, or poorly educated, or unprepared, etc. Before launching your job search, have your resume reviewed by a career professional, or at least by an excellent writer/editor.

Formatting that is difficult for the eye to follow or confusing to look at. The reader will get frustrated, give up, and throw out your resume. The layout and 'readability' of your resume are nearly as important as the written content.

Focusing only on your general job responsibilities, rather than on specific accomplishments and tangible contributions. Employers aren't interested in you just 'doing your job;' they're interested in how you'll 'go the extra mile' to make their company more successful and help them achieve vital corporate objectives.

Too many superlative terms, such as awesome, incredible, amazing, extraordinary, etc. With this terminology, you sound immature and inappropriate or unprepared for the business environment. Also, when you have great accomplishments to share, you don't need to 'dress them up' or overemphasize them with superlatives.

to improve your resume and get much more response

Delete passive-sounding phrases like 'Responsible for' or 'Handled.' Instead use strong action verbs at the beginning of every sentence and phrase. (e.g., Managed, Built, Directed, Led, Supervised, Generated, Achieved, etc).

Instead of an 'Objective' at the top of your resume, put a compelling 'Positioning/Branding Statement' as the first section of the document. (You can use your cover letter to highlight your job search objective).

Remove any fancy formatting, unusual layouts or artsy images (unless you're applying for a job as a graphic designer). Keep your resume's layout simple and clean - almost boring. Let the words on your resume 'speak for themselves.' Be sure the format is consistent and easy for the eye to follow.

Don't just state what you did in each of your jobs; instead, stress the positive outcomes of your contributions at work. Quantify your facts wherever possible. Focus relentlessly on your accomplishments and their tangible, measurable results.

If you eliminate those kinds of resume errors and implement the improvements listed above, your resume will represent you in a more professional manner, and your response rate will increase noticeably!

For more information and other useful tips to help those in career transition achieve career success, visit

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Copyright 2015 by by Ford R. Myers. All rights reserved.

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