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On my initial review of a resume, I spend about 10 seconds making a decision to delete or consider. So, when you send out your resume, consider what you want the receiver to know about you in those important 10 seconds.

  1. Start with the most important.  Depending on your status, that might be education, certifications, or experience.  In college you learn to put your education first. Ten years later, it better be experience.
  2. Unless you are still in college, I don’t want to know where and when you went to high school and that you were on the track team.  If that’s where you want me to spend my 10 seconds, you likely will not get hired.  If you have been out of college for more than 3-5 years, I don’t want to focus on your college activities either.
  3. Unless there is a clear connection to the applied for position, don’t go back to your first job (unless you haven’t been working long).  I worked at the Dairy Queen for 4 years in high school; I can make a beautiful curl on my ice cream cone, but that’s not relevant for most to know!
  4. I DO want to know your key responsibilities in each of your most recent positions: key & brief, not your daily to do list.
  5. List your certifications with your name.  I might not get to the bottom of page 2 to find out you are a CPA or an SPHR.  save some space and put that on the first line.
  6. I struggle with 2 page resumes.  If your resume is any longer than 2 pages, I don’t read them.
JoDee Curtis
JoDee Curtis
JoDee Curtis is the Founder of Purple Ink, Powered by Purple Ink, and the ink pad, author of four books in the JoyPowered® series, and co-host of The JoyPowered® Workspace Podcast. She has a passion for helping organizations and individuals discover their talents, do more of what they do well through her speaking and training, and find joy in their work.

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