Are you thinking about launching a job search during this time of uncertainty? Have you put your career aspirations on hold due to COVID? Or, have you been laid off or furloughed because of the pandemic? Before you start writing your signature resume / preparing for your job search, there are 3 things you need to know.
Yes, a global pandemic sent shock waves through the job market and has left lasting change in its wake. Thousands of hospitality and retail workers have been laid off or furloughed and, although late in the third quarter the economy started to bounce back, millions of jobs are gone forever as hundreds of stores and restaurants have permanently closed their doors.
In the best job market, you need to stand out. In a tough one, you need to stand out more.
The easiest way to write your own resume is to download a template and insert your information. But easy, is rarely effective. My 2 decades of experience as a professional resume writer has taught me that writing an effective resume takes more than simply inserting employment information into a pre-designed resume template. Before you write the first word, you need to have a strategy.
The goal of any job search is to unearth opportunities, but without a clear strategy that will be difficult to do because your strategy is what will drive your decisions, and those decisions will steer you in the right direction.
Start by determining what direction you want your career to go … are you seeking a similar or next-level role?
Are you staying in the same industry or making a move to a new one? … and then:
• Research industries and companies that interest you.
• Review job postings / descriptions for your ideal role.
• Identify employer needs + keywords used.
• Find alignment between your skills + qualifications and the employer’s needs.
Now you can begin to build your career story.
Create a Mock Up
Open a blank Word document and create a basic roadmap of your career beginning with your most recent role and going back in time 15 years or so.
Employer Name, Title Held, Dates of Employment
Value you brought to the role (not tasks performed / responsibilities held).
Find value + impact by using a simple three-word formula: Challenge, Action, Results.
What challenge did you face?
What actions did you take?
What results did you deliver?
For each role, identify your top three to five accomplishments. These are the key facts you want someone to know about your career.
Where/how have you made a difference?
What makes you different than your competitor?
What have you delivered in terms of process improvements, revenue enhancements, market share increases, return on investment?
Take note, make sure you only highlight information that you enjoy (what you want to be known for moving forward) and best showcase your abilities.
Edit Your Resume
Now that you have a document that has your basic information + career narrative, align your information with your target employer’s needs.
Look at your resume through the eyes of an employer and polish your words by focusing on where your skills, qualifications, and experience intersects with the employer’s needs. For your resume to be effective, you need to give the reader the right information.
Sometimes you give it your all and you haven’t had much, if any, success. If that is you, I encourage you to seek out help from a credentialed professional resume writer. The right master resume writer will help you gain clarity, confidence, and control of your job search by articulating your value via a signature, branded resume, cover letter, executive bio, and LinkedIn profile that is UNIQUE to YOU. Not a copy + paste template version that looks and sounds like every other job seeker in your industry.
Book a strategy call today!