The hardest part of producing great resumes for clients is pulling out the details about great things they did on their jobs. About 98% of resumes I receive for review are completely task oriented and not focused on highlighting the person’s accomplishments. Highlighting what you do well is very important to not just having a great resume, but to finding and keeping a job. You must know what you are good and be able to speak to it fairly easy.
The problem is most people don’t think about themselves as a “brand”. They say I am not a coca cola, I am not a product. When most people hear the word brand they think of a huge company like Apple or McDonalds. You think if IPad and Big Macs. These companies have worked very hard to get this name recognition and spent a ton of money to get their products in front of you. Regular ole people like us have a brand as well. We have worked just as hard to establish a brand for ourselves as well. Working 16hr shifts, tons of overtime, and taking work home to complete has allowed everyone who works with you to understand what you provide to the company you work for. Your brand is what people think about you when you are not around, or the first thing that comes to mind when someone mentions your name. Your brand is what you bring to an organization. By taking the time to figure out what you have become known for, you position yourself as an asset to any organization and it gives you the confidence contact employers with strong marketing materials and the ability to negotiate in the future.
So Let’s Get Back To the Resume
Your resume is a marketing tool. If you fill your document with tons of tasks that you do as opposed to what you are really good at, then you limit your possibilities. You also put yourself against people who know their strengths and market value. So here’s some activities to help you realize your strengths and accomplishes in the workplace:
1. Answer These Questions:
What mark did you leave on this position?
What were you known for?
When you left what was the company missing?
Did you change anything that made a positive impact on the organization?
Were you promoted or given more responsibilities?
How does your work free others to do work that directly translate to added value.
When at a loss for identifying accomplishments, it may help to quantify (set them apart) with numbers, percentages, or monetary value through other direct questions. For example:
How many customers served over any given period of time (daily, weekly, monthly, annually)?
How many employees have you trained?
How many client accounts or files managed?
2. Look At Employee Reviews
Stop throwing out your employee reviews. I know the only thing you care about it whether or not you are getting a raise that year, but the things that your supervisor wrote about your work is important. You want to focus on the positive aspects of the review. People can see things about us that we don’t recognize. So look at your employee reviews and start to build common themes that you can add to your resume. Ask yourself how your contributions translate into monetary value for the company.
3. Ask Current & Former Co-Workers
Ask your former and current co-workers what you are good at and what value you add to an organization. Be sure to ask people you are pretty close with. Be sure to let them know why you are asking for this information. It can be embarrassing if someone thinks you are just looking for random accomplishments. Don’t be surprised if you find out about talents you did not know you possessed.
4. Hire a Professional Resume Writer
Professional Resume Writers are trained to pull out information that people don’t always think about. They know the questions to ask and tons of strategies to get people to understand what their brand is. If you have hit a rut and you can’t figure out what value you add to an organization, contact a professional resume writer. Send me an email at email@example.com to get started.
One of the big misconceptions about accomplishments and contributions on the resume is that they have to be huge. People think if they have not gotten a promotion, or led a project that brought millions of dollars to an organization they have not contributed to the organizations bottom line. Doing your job well no matter what it is very beneficial to the success of the company. The problem is that we often go above and beyond to complete our job duties and we put our own stamp on positions, but we don’t pay attention to what we do on a regular basis. So now when you go to work start to pay attention to the things you personally bring to an organization. Update your resume on a regular basis whenever you do something you feel is worthy of mention. The better you know what you are really good, your resume will look great, you will be better equipped to interview, and you will know your value and won’t settle for salaries that are beneath your worth.
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Thanks for reading my post! I am the owner of Career SkyRocket LLC a professional resume writing, career coaching, and training service. I have also been published on CAREEREALISM as well. Follow my blog Career Thoughts. Let’s Connect! Follow me on Twitter, visit my Facebook page, or connect with me here on LinkedIn.