Resumes and Portfolios

Resumes and Portfolios : How did your performance at your job benefit your employer? Answering this question will set your resume apart, because this is often the weakest element of your competition's resume.

Although anyone can learn to develop an effective resume, it can also be helpful to consult those who specialize in the career search process. In this spirit, the following are common resume and cover letter questions posed to career counselors and other experts and their responses. We have chosen to answer only one or two questions, at the same time have weighed in on a number of topics, providing a variety of helpful tips and advice.

In considering the advice provided, keep in mind that there is room for different approaches to resume development depending on your work and education experiences as well as the career path you are pursuing. In fact, even the experts sometimes disagree about the finer points of writing effective resumes. This is an indicator that some flexibility in constructing a resume is possible and should set you at ease in building your own outstanding resume.

Good luck in your job search!

What is the biggest mistake I can make in developing or submitting resumes? : Resumes and Portfolios

Of the potential pitfalls a resume writer may encounter, here are a few.

• Use of first person (I).

• Describing accomplishments in a place where the reader can't associate them with the job in which you did them (credibility comes from the context of the job).

• Too-small type size.

• Job descriptions instead of accomplishments.

• Too much fluff before the reader gets to the substance.

• Too much clutter, too many design features or other attributes that overwhelm the reader's eyes.

• Not targeting the resume to a job function or industry.

• Not including your E-mail address.

Do not embellish your resume. In other words, be honest! Companies are increasing their reliance on background investigations and other techniques to check on your past performance and character. Instead of using your energy in this manner, use it to creatively represent yourself.

The biggest, most widespread and common mistake you can make is to undersell yourself by not describing your experiences both specifically and quantitatively. Using generic and generalized statements like PROVIDED CHILD CARE communicates very little about you to the reader of your resume. What sorts of child care did you provide? What were you actually doing? You have the ability to set yourself apart from others in each descriptive statement you make and you must take this opportunity. A more specific and quantitative set of statements would be MENTO RED 45 CHILDREN AGES 7 TO 10 IN AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAM. Organized and supervised arts and crafts activities that developed and cultivated social, emotional and creative skills in each child. Coordinated and encouraged good physical health and sportsmanship by leading exercise activities for 45 minutes each day. I ensured safety of each child present. Prioritize your statements so that your most important accomplishments are listed first.

Whenever possible, be results oriented and benefit oriented. How did your performance at your job benefit your employer? Answering this question will set your resume apart, because this is often the weakest element of your competition's resume.

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