I review and critique thousands of resumes each year for clients at every career level. A day doesn’t go by when I’m not repeatedly uncovering the same mistake, failure to entice the reader by highlighting career achievements. Hiring influences are not interested in your job duties or your job responsibilities. The difference between a lackluster resume and a winning resume is the emphasis on career achievements, or as I like to call them STAR stories. S-T-A-R, stands for situation, task, action, and result.
The goal is to focus on these four questions. What was the situation that you were assigned or tackled? What were the tasks or steps you took? What skills or actions were required? What was the measurable end result? Ideally you should have one point five STAR stories per year of employment. For the humble that may sound like a lot, but everyone has success stories and you need to toot your own horn.
Start thinking about how you boosted sales, solved a problem, secured new clients, won awards, reduced a cycle time, increased efficiency, or resurrected a business. The list of possibilities is endless. Once you’ve noted your STAR stories, document them in a resume using two or three line bulleted statements. Writing in bullets versus full paragraphs makes it easy for the reader to quickly scan the page. Boost readability and enticement by starting each bullet with an action verb. Words like propelled, elevated, improved, or banished. There are over 2,000 action verbs, so if you need some help go to my website and download my free book called Do You Know Your Action Verbs?