Proofread checklist and checked boxes next to the words spelling, grammar and accuracy as the things an editor reviews in an essay, article or report

Proofread Your Resume

Proofread checklist and checked boxes next to the words spelling, grammar and accuracy as the things an editor reviews in an essay, article or reportJust recently, I was privileged to critique a resume from a CEO of one of the world’s largest advertising companies. I was astounded to see numerous grammar and spelling errors in his document.

What kind of impression would that make on a hiring influencer? Needless to say, he is now my client.

For you, a resume is a marketing tool – a way to advance your candidacy and get to a “yes.” For a hiring manager or executive recruiter, however, a resume is a tool to screen people out and get to a “no.”

Spelling and grammatical mistakes can swiftly get your resume onto the “no” pile. Even though you may be the perfect candidate, you are under the gun and must ready to be penalized if your resume has errors.

Luckily, there are many easy ways to rectify resume errors and stay in the race. First and foremost:

Proofread, proofread and proofread before submitting your resume or other career documentation.

Have it reviewed by friends and family for typos and other oversights. Some of the most common errors I see on executive resumes are:

  • The use of the personal pronouns I, my, he, she, etc.
  • A Hotmail address – studies have shown that 76% of resumes are rejected for an unprofessional email address. Set up a new Gmail address with a first name + last name format
  • A section titled “Objective” – use a “Projective” section instead
  • A photograph
  • Personal details – hiring decision makers are not interested in your marital status, date of birth, or hobbies; they also don’t care about how many pints of blood you’ve given or your childhood paper route

Also review this list of commonly confused or misspelled words and check that you’ve used them correctly in your resume:

A lot versus allot versus alot
Accept versus except
Affect versus effect
Anxious versus eager
Any more versus anymore
Any one versus anyone
Any way versus anyway
Every day versus everyday
It’s versus its
That versus which
Then versus than
They’re versus their versus there
To versus too versus two
Where versus wear versus were
Who’s versus whose
Your versus you’re

Don’t get caught on the resume blooper reel. Proofread, proofread, proofread. You cannot assume that spell check will pick up on all mistakes and redline them. Often some will be missed. This is where having your resume reviewed by a human is critical.

You only get one chance to impress. Failure to proofread could be your executive career downfall.

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