Resume Advice: Digging out of a Career Hole
We all have set-backs in our career. When you feel you are so low that you can’t recover, it is time to challenge yourself to try harder. Don’t stay in the hole; dig yourself out! Things won’t happen overnight. You may have to make a lateral move before you advance. The important thing is to take control of your career.
Create a strategy for your transition. Your resume is a big part of that strategy. Follow these tips when writing a resume following a downward career.
Focus on Your Target Job
Write about your skills, accomplishments, and experience as they relate to your target job. In other words, the accomplishments that prove you can be successful in your next job. Avoid focusing entirely on your current position. Showcase your value in your profile, core competencies, and experience sections of your resume. As you search for job opportunities, review the postings to understand the needs of the employer so you can match your skills to their needs.
Identify Marketable Skills
Consider your skills and experience. Identify those skills that are most marketable. Think about your recent history and your skills that demonstrate your depth to your understanding of a company’s operations. In other words, show how you were able to make contributions beyond your past positions. There is an over-used cliché, “See the big picture.” It is true, big picture thinkers are valuable in an organization. They also handle transitions very well.
Create a Positive Image
Draw from your history to uncover career achievements. These achievements can help downplay your recent career downturn by changing the focus. Never lie on your resume. However, it is not necessary to give a lot of resume real estate to your recent job loss, demotion, or whatever the downturn may be. Instead, boost your resume with dozens of examples of success. Concrete examples, fortified with measured results, will create a positive image.
Hiring managers and recruiters understand that many professionals have dips and unfortunate career twists. The important thing it to present yourself as a confident, skilled candidate with a history of success. Career set-backs happen. Write your resume to support your strategy for upward mobility.