Call Us Today: +1 310-503-5856

Resume Writing

Resume Tips and Tricks

resume-tips-and-tricks-sage-strategiesWrite. Format. Edit. Scrub. Send.
Your resume tells your story for you. Maybe you aren’t in front of the hiring manager. Or it may give the person who needs to translate your story or introduce you to the hiring manager a better understanding of your background. This is a working document meaning that it changes with you, your direction, the specific job you want and additional job, education or association experience details. Any good writing cannot be made better if you don’t take time and read what you write. This document won’t sell for you. You must create a relationship with the hiring manager. Put your best foot forward and tell a great story about who you are and where you’ve been.

Are you building on your current resume or starting from the beginning? Pull it out, dust if off, highlight your pros, and add new life to your story.

  • Be clear on the job you want and find that job description.
    • Utilized transferable skills to create an even stronger story when changing
  • Gather your story, find all the details; work life history, associations, education,certification, write it all down. Decide what to keep when you’re scrubbing the document. But start with all the companies, dates, places and more details than you’ll use.

Decide on a style. This is your story telling document. It is only responsible to be a marketing
piece describing in greater detail, your strengths. There are samples of these on the website.

  • Chronological to show strength of career path, functional resume to synthesize your
    experience for senior level or transition within your career targeted resume when the
    specific position has a standard format.
  • Accomplishment style shows longer history with accomplishments rather than specific
    jobs. The job history is also included but doesn’t limit the number of years for the actual
    document. This is a combination of styles and you can make your own hybrid.

This is the section where you add the story thread to the resume. It’s your story but it has to be
conveyed in a way that is easily understood.

  • Once you’ve decided on the style add your details and history to that format.
  • Circle the key words in the job description and use them in your resume.

Scrubbing is the process of fine tuning the resume. You’ve been pouring your heart into this
document that describes who you are and what you want potential hiring managers to know
about you. You may have even sent it out a few times. Now let’s take it to the next level.
Wait no less than 24 hours or one good night sleep before taking this step. Waiting makes your
approach fresher. Look at this step as you would check the document for a friend. Print out the
document and circle areas of concern and write all over it. Then go back and make changes.

Start at the top – sounds silly but check it out

  1. Is your name spelled correctly?
  2. Can they contact you? Phone and email address correct?
  3. City and State? In my opinion your exact address should be kept private until you
  4. know who has your resume in their hands.
  5. Don’t use your current work email, ever. Get a gmail, yahoo or other free email that
  6. can travel with you when you depart your current employer. Also when selecting a
  7. email address make it a professional rather that too personal or cutesy.
  8. Check the dates are they sequential?
  9. How will you explain the gaps? Check that your story has a positive spin.


  1. Measurable achievements – making the statement quantifiable give more depth
    and strength to the statement, no judging on whether it’s small or large as you don’t
    know how they are looking at the detail.

    • How many countries, stakeholders, parts, divisions, clients, products,
    • What percentage increase, oversaw, decrease, new business, trade dollars?
    • Dollars saved, grown, tracked, in the P&L, spent, etc.
    • What levels were exposed to your projects; high profile to CEO or to Asia, to
      the board of directors or VP’s two levels up?
  2. Power words and verbs – check each sentence to see if there is a verb at the
    beginning of the statement? What more powerful verb can you use?

    • Tackled, targeted, taught, terminated, tested, took, toured, traced, tracked, traded,
      trained, transferred, transcribed, transformed, translated, transported, traveled,
      treated, trimmed, tripled, turned, tutored?
    • Use many to keep the reader interested.
    • How does it read?
  3. Read each statement out loud – does it make sense?
  4. Read each statement out loud – can you describe a situation or example of how that
    statement is true?
  5. Meaningful towards the intended job desired:
    • Is what you loved about your job outlined?
    • Did you leave off things that held you back?
    • Full description or the duties or selected focus?
  6. Does the statement talk about a benefit to the employer?

Graphic appeal
Take a look at the resume as if you’ve never seen it with a fresh eye. Hold the document
away from you, now look at it.

  1. Look at it, in the first two seconds, what do you see?
  2. Is it clear that your name reads without much trouble?
  3. Where does your eye go next, does it land somewhere or is the resume is one block of
    characters and your eye has no place to land?
  4. Break up the block of text by incorporating design or structure into the piece
    • Use bullet points.
    • Use more than one type face or font size.
    • Make some of the key words bold.
    • Highlight key words that would describe the job you want by making them bold.

Point of Difference…
In the sea of resumes, how do you stand out? When creating the story around any product
launch the story is created for the greatest success. Every experience you have in your history
adds to your story. All the projects, the jobs lost, the job gained, the traveling you’ve done, the
volunteering you do, the family, the education, the workshops, mistakes you’ve made once,
mistakes you’ve made twice, the languages you learned, the things that make you happy. Every
bit of your experience is different from everyone. You are the only one with the accumulation of
key learnings with your unique passions and gifts. This is your chance to really be unique and
go after the job or career that will make you happy to get up in the morning.

Repeat. Keep doing these steps until you are amazed that you haven’t been hired yet. If
you’re having trouble getting it to that stage ask for help. Get a friend, or a colleague who you
respect, hire a coach to help you read through it asking where you can make it more powerful.


In the Spotlight

Leadership News

Here's the latest:

Address Info:

Sage Strategies
Phone: +1 310-503-5856

Office Locations:
Los Angeles, CA
Madison, WI
Naples, FL

Free Analysis

Facebook Twitter