1. Fix that email address. Nothing will date you faster than an email address that is associated with a company that peaked before the 21st century. Rather than using your prehistoric AOL or Yahoo address, create a Gmail account for your job search activities. Consider it part of the normal technology evolution process. You parted with your rotary phone, fax machine and Blackberry. You can let go of this, too.
2. List your cell phone rather than your home phone. This is another dinosaur. Even if you still have a home phone, isnâ€™t your cell phone the best way to reach you? You want to be available to recruiters and hiring managers quickly; it makes sense to give them the fastest way to contact you.
3. Eliminate subjective words and descriptions of personal attributes from your resume summary.These words do little to position your value to an employer. Nix words like “seasoned” or “veteran” (translation: old), “high energy” (translation: you sound insecure) and “accomplished” (you’d better be; youâ€™re a senior executive). Replace these with a synopsis of career highlights where you helped the companies you supported make money, save money, save time, grow the business or keep the business. Showcase tangible skills (e.g., turned around three companies, led 12 acquisitions, took $6 million of expenses out of the business, etc.) to validate your worth to an employer.
4. Step out of the 90s and update your resume format. Perhaps the last time you updated your resume, there were few design options. But Microsoft Word has come a long way. Use charts, graphics and color to convey your impact, just like you do in your executive role when you create reports to influence senior management, the board, investors, customers, etc. Decision makers respond well to these visual cues, too.
5. Get rid of scholarships and honors you earned as an undergraduate. Youâ€™ve been running a multimillion-dollar P&L and achieving incremental growth for your company for years. Is that President’s Scholarship or summa cum laude distinction from 1988 really still relevant?
6. Stop getting caught up in semantics. Sometimes my executive clients feel uncomfortable taking credit for accomplishments that they directed but didnâ€™t carry out on their own. As a result, they fail to list some of their most outstanding accomplishments. Hiring managers understand that, in many cases, you had a team behind you to execute on a strategy, but if you feel clarification is necessary, try using language that shows your instrumental role in an initiative, such as, â€œCreated the business transformation strategy that the team executed to reduce costs by $3 million,â€ or, â€œHired the C-level talent necessary to optimize the sales process and realize $5 million in new business in less than nine months.â€
This content was originally published here.