What You Need to Know About Executive Resumes – Part 1

Executive ResumeConsidering that your Executive Resume is more intensely scrutinized than the Resume you submitted at an earlier stage in your career, and recognizing the risk vs. reward factor at the Director, VP or CXO level is more pronounced, it is in your best interest that your Executive Resume be as near perfect as possible from the onset of your job search.

In today’s ultra-competitive job market most people in the know don’t recommend writing your own Resume for an executive position, or for that matter for any job paying six-figures. Two reason why are because the stakes are way too high to chance rejection, and because Resume writing is not a talent to be learned at this stage in one’s career via trial and error. Still, some executives remain undaunted by this logic and they love and live for a challenge.

So for those brave souls who endeavor to buck the odds and write a Do-It-Yourself Executive Resume here are some pointers to consider before you submit your Resume to a recruiter, to a company, for an internal promotion, or to a fellow professional you’re networking with to pass your Resume around in their sphere of influence.

1: Executive Resumes are not One-Size-Fits-All so you must first determine the most effective presentation style for your job search based on the nature of the position and the industry. A resume for a CEO can look different than that of a CMO or CIO and a Resume in investment banking can look different than a Resume in public relations. Therefore you need to investigate what these difference are, and more important, why they exist.  This is also why you should shy away from using a Resume template and create a custom tailored document.

2: You must determine if you need two (or more) different Resumes.  This is common practice if the Hire Profile for the jobs you’re seeking differs greatly and therefore one document will not resonate strong enough for both.

3: Starting at the top of Page One you need a defined Job Title that tells readers the position you are seeking rather than describing the position you hold or formally occupied and underneath this include a Personal Brand Statement that you will continue to build upon and validate throughout the entire document.

4:  Effective Executive Resumes rarely follow the convention of using a purely functional or chronological format. They are best crafted using a customized hybrid format that prompts the eyes to immediately focus on information that relates directly to the “Hire Profile,” and helps the reader determine if you are a reasonable match for the job.

A challenge in using a hybrid format is crafting a Resume to capitalizes on your particular strengths and uniqueness and at the same time effectively masking or negating deselect flaws or weaknesses in your background so you will get an opportunity to address them in a face to face meeting or phone screen.

The most common hybrid is a Resume that starts out using the functional format and it can include a detailed profile, a listing of skills, selected accomplishments and contributions, personal endorsements, or a personal statement.

It then follows a chronological format listing experience in descending order with varying degrees of detail, followed by education and miscellaneous sections such as Certifications, Publications, and Affiliations etc.

5: Determining the proper length of an Executives Resume is a dilemma for many executives. Because of conflicting opinions on this topic a great many Executive Resumes are prone to omit vital information to achieve brevity when in fact an extra page is needed to tell their story. On the other hand some Executive Resumes are too long because they try to be all things to all people and fail to focus on the Hire Profile for a specific position. In the latter case 2 Resumes would be a more appropriate way to proceed.

Come and visit this site again next week for the concluding Part Two.

As always I would be happy to critique U.S. resume at no cost when emailed to perry@perrynewman.com

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