What Goes into Creating a Strong Resume?

Written By: Ellenore Holbrook

We have all had experiences that are influential to our lives and who we have become. They range from the time you accepted your first part-time job working at Wendy’s to when a customer choked on a piece of cheese and you performed the Heimlich in the restaurant. Our experiences help us develop skills; skills that can demonstrate to employers that you are their ideal candidate to hire. But how do we show employers via a short resume all of the incredible, and sometimes weird, things we have learned?

        Your resume is not only a list of your jobs and education, but it helps tell the story of you. It’s a living document that can include information like your jobs and education, as well as coursework, presentations, research papers, volunteer work, and even personal information like hobbies and interests. The goal is to demonstrate to the reader the skills you have learned from these experiences and support them with evidence of your accomplishments. We often use the model below to help develop strong bullet points on a resume:

–          Action Verb (the skill you used) + Specifics (Who, What, How, Why) + Outcomes

This model helps even the most lay reader truly understand all of the work you have done and why it is important.

Basically, anyone can say they are calm under pressure, but saying “demonstrated a calm demeanor during hectic situations such as performing the Heimlich on a customer and ensured their safety afterwards” really pushes the point home!

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