You hear a lot these days about how a powerful resume can make all the difference in the job search. The web is full of tips on writing, rewriting, polishing, and re-polishing your resume. There’s certainly value in learning what goes where, how keywords work, what to say and, especially, what not to say. While there’s something to be said for the DIY approach, it’s also worth considering how a professional approaches a complex and challenging resume. We often talk about how a resume should tell your story, but this is the story of the resume itself.
Aaron came to us as a VP of product development with an Ivy League degree and some seriously varied experience. In addition to his VP role, he’s successfully launched his own magazine and held a director-level position at a digital agency. As if this budding career wasn’t varied enough, he told us that his next challenge would be landing an executive-level marketing position. Aaron had never held a marketing title, but he was convinced of his ability to land the job. Upon review of his resume, it became clear that the skills were there, but the resume itself was a muddled hodge-podge of tasks and achievements without any trajectory or context.
Certified Professional Resume Writer Michael Cirigliano with TheLadders said that the biggest challenge was prioritizing the focus of Aaron’s resume. He had great experience in many different areas, but not all of it was applicable to the positions he was interested in.
During the initial call with Aaron, Michael spent about 30 minutes digging through the existing resume and placing all of his accomplishments in their proper functional context. The next step was to turn the Aaron’s accomplishments into a narrative. Deconstructing all of his experience in e-commerce, marketing, and business development provided a more complete picture of him as a professional.
Within 48 hours, Aaron had a new resume that told the story of his career path, highlighting key attributes that would make him an attractive candidate for an executive-level marketing position.
About six weeks had passed before Michael received the following email from Aaron.
Not sure if your remember me, but you helped craft my resume a few weeks back. I wanted to let you know that the first company that received the revised resume has hired me as their Chief Marketing Officer -- an ideal position that I'm very excited to begin. I'm certain that the extraordinary version of the resume significantly helped this process, and I wanted to personally thank you for your help.
If there's anything I can do recommend your work, please let me know and I'll be happy to assist.
While the typical executive-level job search takes several months, lightning sometimes strikes. We wish Aaron the best of luck in his new position, and are so happy to have been a part of his success story.
Do you have a resume success story? We’d love to hear from you! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Meanwhile, stay tuned for more resume wins in the weeks to come.
Ryan Galloway is the Content Development Manager for the TheLadders’ Career Services Team. He helps writers develop innovative strategies that make members’ job search documents more effective. When he’s not working, he’s out buying way too many books. But he doesn't have a problem. Really.