Great Resumes Fast » Resume Writing Tips » Using an Executive Resume to Switch from Academia to the Corporate World

Many corporate executives have spent plenty of time in the academic world, typically as students acquiring one or more degrees.  But oftentimes, individuals who remain in academia don’t have a great deal of experience when it comes to the inner workings of Corporate America.

If you are working in the academic world and would like to switch to a corporate career, the concept may sound a bit foreign, but this doesn’t mean your goal can’t be accomplished. Here are a few tips to help you make the transition a bit easier.

Showcase Your Leadership Qualities

Working as an executive requires exceptional leadership qualities, which means it will be up to you to prove that your background in leadership was strong enough to transfer to the corporate setting.  In this case, being a professor may not be enough.  You may have to show that you were department head for many years, headed major research projects, or pulled together large conferences that prove others were well guided under your supervision.

Incorporate Transferable Skills

The academic and corporate worlds are unique in many ways—and corporations know this.  From organizational culture to day-to-day tasks, you may function very differently in a university than you might in a corporate setting.  To combat the differences, it’s good to incorporate transferable skills that show you have managed major tasks in the academic world that will transfer successfully to the corporate world, including your leadership skills mentioned above.

Showcase an Understanding of the Field and Position

Some of your transferable skills will come from being able to identify the main goals of the field you want to pursue and the position you hope to acquire.  Your job as a new executive will be to show that you not only understand what it takes to be an executive, but also that you are now ingrained in the field you hope to join and understand the specifics of the position you want to acquire.

A way to get this done is to research companies and their challenges.  This could help you find bits of your past that prove you can manage those issues and help guide the company toward success.

Add an Executive Career Summary

When writing your executive resume, it’s a good idea to incorporate some of the highlights of your academic career that summarize the skills and qualifications that make you attractive in the corporate setting.  Leadership, of course, is always important.  But you’ll also need to showcase an understanding of organizational culture and also highlight specific candidate qualifications required by the company.

Many corporate executive leaders were originally products of the academic world, so there’s no doubt that you can accomplish the same.  To get it done, however, you will need to pay close attention to what the corporate world stands for and how you can fit in to succeed.

For additional tips and advice on resumes and cover letters, follow us on Twitter @GreatResume or visit our blog.

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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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