My name is Alan De Back and I am thrilled to be a guest writer on IWCC’s BLOG and share my expertise in resume writing.
Since joining IWCC as an Associate Consultant in 2001, I have facilitated IWCC writing skills training, presentation skills training and meeting skills training workshops to hundreds of business professionals across North America.
As a career counsellor for over 20 years, I’ve constantly worked with my clients to make sure their resume is the best marketing tool possible. Too many of my clients view their resumes as a dry autobiography of everything they’ve ever done instead of a dynamic means of selling themselves to a potential employer. Your resume is the primary way a prospective employer will make the decision to bring you in the door for an interview, so why bore them with useless trivia?
Value of “Active” Language
IWCC teaches the value of writing in an active versus a passive format. Writing in an active format goes a long way towards making your resume the dynamic marketing tool that you want it to be. Consider this section from a resume written in a passive format:
- Data analysis was completed on complex financial reports. This resulted in identification of budget savings of over 15%
Compare that to this section written in an active format:
- Analyzed data from complex financial reports resulting in over 15% budget savings.
By starting with an “action verb,” the writer of the second example delivered the same message in a more concise, easier to understand format.
The Results Factor
Most employers in this tough job market are looking for results and accomplishments. Your resume, written in an active format using action verbs, delivers the strong message that you are results oriented. Using “responsible for” and listing a litany of activities shows only that you can outline all the activities you perform. The difference is between “activities” and “results.” As a famous hamburger commercial asked back in the 1980’s, “Where’s the beef?”
Alan’s book “Get Hired in a Tough Market: Insider Secrets for Finding and Landing the Job You Need Now” is available on Amazon.
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