Sitting down to create your resume? Your mind is probably running, thinking about your abilities, accomplishments and skill set. But, do you know how to translate all those awesome things to your resume?
As you start to write items down and begin arranging your bullets, creating impact statements and targeting your resume to the position you’re pursuing, you begin to run out of awesome things to write. Frantically you jot down a few tasks, a few hobbies, and a quick objective statement. Closing your laptop, you’re happy to be done with your resume. But, before you send it to an employer, double check your resume to ensure you’re not making these fatal resume mistakes.
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Leave Hobbies At Home
Each day, our team of Certified Professional Resume Writers reviews terrible resumes that are in desperate need of help. And, a common mistake we see is hobbies listed on a resume.
I understand that running takes dedication or gardening is your passion. While your resume should be personal in as much as it represents you, it should not be used to create a personal connection between you and the interviewer. Your resume should be designed to market your professional skills.
If your hobby isn’t related to your profession, don’t include it on your resume. Wasting precious resume real estate on something that won’t help you land your dream job is silly.
Pictures And Birthdays
Your resume is not a dating profile or a postcard. Including a professional picture and your date of birth on your resume is not recommended. Is your selfie going to land you a dream career opportunity? I’ll answer this one for you. Doubtful!
Clients who want us to leave their picture on their resume always tell us, “my picture is on LinkedIn, what’s the big deal”. For starters, the “big deal” is, it’s unprofessional to include a picture on your resume. Beyond that, some companies will not accept resumes that include this depth of personal information and you will be ruled out.
Unless you’re in the entertainment industry and are sharing a professional portfolio with headshots, leave your picture and birthday behind when creating your resume.
We don’t recommend using the old school statement “professional references available upon request”. The reality is, every hiring manager knows this and it doesn’t need to be stated. Once again, you’re wasting space that is much better utilized to show your accomplishments.
What’s worse than listing professional references on your resume? Personal references. An employer doesn’t care what your neighbor or best friend thinks of you. I’m sure you’re a great person with loads of friends, but a friend cannot speak to your professional abilities and successes.
Landing a great job is not a popularity contest. If references are requested from the hiring manager, don’t share personal references. Doing so makes it appear as if you have zero professional references.
Colors And Crazy Design
Your resume is not a second-grade art project. Believe me, we’re a creative group with a lot of personality but we realize your resume is not meant to light up a billboard.
When we talk about your resume being a marketing piece, we’re referring to the content and format, not odd designs and colors. Unless you’re in marketing and need to showcase your marketing abilities in person (more on that topic later) leave the Crayola’s and paint by number set in your desk drawer.