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Our evaluation Of The "Before" Executive Resume Sample As Shown Below-Left

General Market Appeal: It does not take a trained eye to see that the original version of the executive resume sample written by Richard A. Curtis (a fictitious name) as shown below left is visually unattractive and makes a very poor presentation. There is, however, a far more important issue to consider: its content. Richard’s work is not only amateurish, but he has done an abysmal job in terms of selling his key qualifications and conveying the level of experiences and successes he has achieved over the course of his career. In career-marketing parlance he has failed to target his executive resume or show any of the value-added benefits that an employer can use to gauge his potential for future success.

Clarity of His Objective: When asked about his job objective, Richard stated that he was interested in a President/CEO position, but was willing to consider any C-level situation regardless of title, provided it offered the right opportunity. However, the closest he comes to stating an objective is the term “Senior Executive” at the beginning of a very mediocre summary. Since Richard was willing to consider a variety of C-suite job titles, we kept the door open for him by using the heading “Senior Operating & General Management Executive” which is broad in scope, but provides far more impact than simply saying “Senior Executive.”

Strength of His Branding Effort: The impact of an executive resume’s summary (the first five or six lines of text), together with the accompanying core competencies section, is by far the most effective branding tool available for establishing an employer’s initial perception as to what a job seeker has to offer. As you can see, however, Richard’s poorly written summary, and his total lack of any appropriate core competencies, means very few people would bother to read more than the first few lines of his resume (if even that much). And without presenting this information to prospective employers, Richard would have very little hope of ever generating any viable job leads. A well-written summary, supported by your key-functional strengths, will go a long way in telling employers if you have the right qualifications for the job you are seeking. 

Overall Sales Impact: Richard’s home-spun product is often referred to as an obituary-style executive resume since it is almost assuredly doomed to a quick death in a reader’s hands. It is neither distinctive nor persuasive, and it certainly does nothing to demonstrate his ability to provide the strategic vision, direction and leadership of a company with hard tangible evidence of his ability to improve corporate growth, profits and shareholder value. His “Before” version simply does not address every employer’s most burning question: “What can you do for me and how well can you do it?” But as his “After” executive resume clearly shows, Richard’s background includes a number of notable money-making, money-saving and growth-related accomplishments that all companies want to hear about. Unfortunately, if you had nothing but Richard’s “Before” version to consider, you would have never known it.

Value-Added Benefits: Richard completely fails to present the superlative accomplishments (best, greatest, least, etc.) that would serve as proof of his ability to consistently meet, and frequently exceed, the highest-level of performance expectations. He continually indicates the actions he has taken, without adequately stating the tangible benefits (expressed in terms of money, percentages, time, units, etc.) that resulted from those actions. Employers want hard information and value-added benefits, but Richard didn’t remember a basic principle: Sell! Sell! Sell! It is this exact type of executive resume that has led so many talented people down the road to job-hunting despair.

Composition and Readability: His formatting in extremely poor making his resume difficult to read, and composition errors (grammar, voice, punctuation, syntax, misspellings, tense, etc.) are found throughout the document. This can be disastrous as confirmed by a recent newspaper article that in part stated: “. . . and 84 percent of executives profiled said it takes just one or two typographical errors in a resume to remove a candidate from consideration for a job opening.” Richard may be a very successful business leader, but his ability to sell this fact on paper is severely lacking and he should never have attempted to write his own executive resume.





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