Chronicles of life, employment and everything in between

Resume Diary

A few weeks ago I was in a conversation with a friend of mine, who was on a look out for his next gig in the industry. He felt his current organization did not have much to offer to evolve from a career standpoint and he had hit the growth ceiling. So I asked him to send me his updated resume.

Take 1

Career snapshot - 18 years experience with a large IT Services, multinational company, based out of India in a global sales and operations role.....It was his first cut - requesting feedback. Incidentally he was working with the company for the last 6 years. So what I got is a reverse chronoligical resume with experience in different roles that he had in his career.

I ask candidates to address the following questions with this kind of a profile. So as to ensure a like to like comparison.

(a) Who is the potential reader of your resume? - a CXO level professional..
(b) What is he looking for? - He is going to slice and dice the resume from his high perch in the organization. (c) What are his parameters? How does he like to view potential candidates?

Here is a generic list but can be more specifically defined based on industry, sector...

1. P&L Analysis (always state in readers measurement units or the resume is trashed.)
2. Geography oversight
3. Employee strength supervised
4. Lines of businesses controlled (If there is industry overlap with current employment)

Give this a strategic feel while presenting the facts, It is understood that we are looking at 1 pager or maximum a 2 pager.

Take 2

I got a resume which was decently formatted, presented the facts as suggested by me in our earlier conversation. On receipt, I got into the debriefing process nitpicking on details of his achievements and facts stated on the resume. Guess what, he faltered when grilled further. He gave excuses that it is difficult to remember details of specific achievements in a 6 year period. Doing this with an interviewer could potentially backfire for several reasons - incompetent, cooking up facts and mire the entire transaction in a myriad of false perceptions which might not be true.

To protect against such outcomes I suggest the following:

Maintain a "Resume Diary" - What is a resume diary? It is similar to diary writing but from a professional perspective. The candidate on a periodical basis writes down facts regarding different assignments that he/she has worked on based on parameters (qualitative & quantitative) that could be used potentially by interviewers to gauge his/her capability. The frequency of note taking is based on convenience but important to do it so as to not lose out on valuable facts. Doing this religiously helps with recalling facts when looking out for the next opportunity that could further one's career. This helps regardless of where you are in your career - as a fresher, junior or senior level executive.

This helps with the following:

1)Confident and lucid communication
2)Positive body language
3)Detailing is more succinct
4)Could be the difference in giving a strong performance from a tough assessor

So add a page to your diary! I am sure it would be of great help in advancing your career.

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