Basic Resume Sections that Matter to Hiring Executives
Have you ever wondered what parts of your executive resume really matter to the hiring team? The key pieces might not be what you think. Read on to learn what to add to your executive resume to be so compelling that your hiring team cannot ignore it.
Always put your name at the top of your resume. Double-check to ensure that your name is spelled properly. If you use your middle name or initial, ensure that this is included and spelled correctly as well.
Your Current Contact Information
Below your name, include your address, city, state, and zip code–or, in some cases, your city and state only. Then include ONE phone number (mobile is usually best) and your current email address. If you have moved recently, please retype your address and print out a fresh copy, if you are handing the resume directly to a contact–never cross out the old and write in the new.
Give Your Career History a Title
Never use the word “Resume” as a heading to your resume, as any application tracking system (ATS) or online job application tool will interpret this to mean that your name is “resume.”
Instead, below your contact information, include the title of the position you currently have, the one you are seeking, or a general description of the type of role you are approaching, if you have not formally held this title before. I have often joked that including this one line ensures that the intern who opens the mail knows to whom he should give the envelope with your resume in it.
Summary–Your Professional Branding Statement
Following the title to your career history, include a brief statement about your professional branding. Describe the characteristics of your professional persona that make you incomparable and valuable. Writing a compelling, targeted branding statement guarantees that your reader will see how you solve her current problem, which is what compels her to be hiring for this position. Do not under any circumstances include an objective statement. This selfish, old-school “I want” will only serve to irritate your reader, who in this moment truly does not care what you want.
Deliver your career history in a series of bulleted statements that are:
* Describes not only what you did but how you did it.
Eliminate the phrase “responsible for” from your vocabulary. Instead of delivering a series of human-resources-generated statements about what you were responsible for, include powerful, goal-driven statements of accomplishments that uniquely describe your contributions to your company.
Include your degree (or credits earned toward the degree), your major, and your university plus city and state. Do not include the dates of your attendance or graduation. Leave off anything prior to your bachelor-level degree.
Other Sections to Include
Not every executive candidate will have foreign languages, publications, volunteer leadership, research projects, industry association memberships, and so on. If you do, title the additional section appropriately and include the relevant information. No need, however, to include anything related to personal interests.
Do you have a question about what sections to include in your executive resume? Call Five Strengths.
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