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If I Know Where You Want to Go, I Can Help You Get There

This week I met a client, eager to move into a new job, maybe a new career. The client is extremely talented with 14 years of diverse experience. She’s well qualified to do many things based on experience, an MBA, and an undergraduate degree in engineering. My first question was: “What type of position are you targeting?” She presented a seemingly simple request: “Just write me a resume that sets me up for anything…it could be project management in an engineering setting, it could be business development, or maybe consulting.”

Sure, I can create a chronology of a client’s work experience and begin with an “everything, but the kitchen sink” style profile. However, that will not be effective. I would not be doing this client a favor by developing a one-size-fits-all resume. A resume focused on a particular goal will have a much higher response rate.

A resume is not a historical document, it is a marketing document. The reader has a list of requirements. The skills and accomplishments on your resume should be tailored to address those specific requirements. An employer wants a candidate who is motivated to succeed in a particular occupation, not someone who will take any job that pays a certain salary.

Many clients have a single goal and a single resume. Some clients have multiple goals and require multiple resumes. In the case of the aforementioned client, she ultimately defined two major job targets. Because they were quite diverse, we wrote two resumes customized for each of the two paths. We were able to showcase relevant skills on each resume to match each career goal.

It is alright if you don’t have an exact job title in mind. However, we need a general direction or a description of the functions you want to perform. Through a consultation we brainstorm and define a general target. It also helps to study job postings on or to get a sense of the job market and where you fit. If I know where you want to go, I can write a resume and LinkedIn profile language to help you get there.

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