Writing a resume can feel like one of the most challenging aspects of a job search. There’s no doubt that writing this document requires a lot of introspection. But oftentimes, the challenge comes with a lack of true insight into your own career.
We spend a lot of time working on our jobs, but rarely give thought to the specific contributions we make to our employers in our roles. A good way to identify those contributions while providing insight into what information should be included in your resume is to ask yourself specific questions about your career.
1. What Are My Marketable Skill Sets?
As you create your resume, you want to think about the skills you bring to the table that would deem you to be a desirable candidate to a future employer. Take time to examine the skills you acquired with your previous employers. What were your primary contributions and how do these contributions help you to qualify for the role you want now?
2. How Would I Describe Myself in My Career?
As you examine your career as a whole, how would you describe yourself? Are you a natural leader? Do you love to initiate projects and see them developed and implemented? Are you the type of person who asks your manager how you can make contributions to enhance the company you work for? Take a look at the type of worker you are to help you remember top moments in your professional history when you truly made a difference. Also, try to recall instances when you were rewarded for your hard work so that you can add these details to your resume.
3. What Makes Me Stand Out From the Pack?
While you likely have a great deal of experience and highly attractive marketable skills, you are one of several qualified candidates competing for the same positions. What qualities do you bring to the table that make you stand out from the pack? Are you highly skilled in a software program that most people in your position are not? Think about what truly makes you a top choice for the position you want, and then add this information to your resume.
Once you’ve asked yourself these questions, you will have greater insight into what makes you the right person for the job you are interested in acquiring. Then you can use this insight to create an attractive resume that sells you as the perfect candidate for the job.
It’s important to remember to brand your resume before applying to each new position for more information on branding check out my recent article 5 Key Areas to Target When Branding Your Resume. You can also get additional job search and career related advice by checking out our blog or following us on Twitter @GreatResume.
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About the author
Jessica Hernandez, President, CEO & Founder of Great Resumes Fast
Hi, I’m Jessica. I started this company back in 2008 after more than a decade directing hiring practices at Fortune 500 companies.
What started as a side hustle (before that was even a word!) helping friends of friends with their resumes has now grown into a company that serves hundreds of happy clients a year. But the personal touch? I’ve kept that.
You might have seen me featured as a resume expert in publications like Forbes, Fast Company, and Fortune. And in 2020, I was honored to be named as a LinkedIn Top Voice of the year!
I’m so glad you’re here, and I can’t wait to help you find your next perfect-fit position!
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I think these questions are really valuable. Being able to write your own resume is a very important skill, and answering these questions is a really good place to begin.
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Excellent post. I am facing a few of these issues as well.
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Questions to Ask When Writing Your Resume