One Simple Trick to Take the Weight out of your To-Do List

Do you have that one thing that you keep pushing down on your to-do list?

Yeah, that one.

Mine has been on my list for MONTHS...and I just checked it off this week. Cue the balloon drop and fireworks!

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What's weighing down your weekly to-do list? Mine was a certification course. It was just TOO BIG to get done in seven days. Looking back, I needed to take my Dad's sage advice on how to eat an bite at a time.

Do you feel like this with your resume? You are blowing off the digital dust and it just feels too overwhelming to start. Take one bite at a time.

Gather materials. Collect performance reviews and assessment results, grab your kudos file and revisit projects finished and clients won to remember your professional wins.

Conduct a SWOT analysis on yourself. Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses and identify opportunities and threats.

Know your job target. Learn the ropes of your next job through online and in-person research. (This can take time - break it up!)

Write. Yep, just start. Go section by section or job by job.

Edit. Eliminate fluff and ensure quantifiable accomplishment statements replace paragraphs of job duties.

What stops you from updating your resume?

Remember: Add only the bites to the to-do list, not the whole elephant.

Need a helping hand? Collaborate with Meg on your professional resume. Find out more here.

Ask the Experts: How Do I Get Noticed by Employers?

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It is a privilege to be a National Resume Writer Association’s Ask The Experts Contributor answering how to get noticed by employers when you aren’t getting callbacks from your online applications. Check out my answer along with other experts on their blog.

Psst! I’ll let you in on the secret: connect with people more than job boards.

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Wake up your Resume: 3-Steps for Powerful Bullet Points

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When you look at your resume do you want to take a nap? Most people’s eyes glaze over and droop to a close at the look of black font, dreary design elements and lackluster employment information.

Wake up your resume! It is about YOU after all! Your life. Your professional accomplishments. You aren’t boring so don’t let your resume be.

An easy way to infuse personality into your resume is to showcase your professional accomplishments, not just routine job duties.

Think of a notable professional win. Do you have it?

OK. Let’s break it down using the C.A.R method: Challenge, Action Result.

Challenge ➝ Identify the challenge you faced.

Action ➝ How did you address the problem?

Result ➝ What was the outcome?

Then, quantify. Here’s an example:

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Show off your professional wins to indicate your future value to a prospective employer. Lead with your impact.

Need further guidance? Use our bullet-point resume writing formula here.

Wake Up Your Resume: Share Your Accomplishments

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Are you bored reading your resume? Guess what? Other people are too!

Brighten it up with new language. Ditch phrases like “responsible for” and “duties include.” Instead choose sharp, descriptive action verbs to detail your professional accomplishments.

That’s right, your accomplishments. No need to regurgitate your job description. Your reader is interested in YOU - the actual PERSON behind the job. Detail how you address challenges in front of you. Share your results! In fact, lead with them in your bullet points.

Your past accomplishments indicate your future value to a prospective employer. Greet your reader with enthusiasm and your unique value.

Need help with snooze-worthy bullet points? Wake up your resume with our free bullet point writing formula.

Hope is Not a Job Search Strategy

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In the job search feeling hopeful is important, but it isn’t a strategy.

Choose five things to do each day that will get you to your new gig. Write this short to-do list on a notecard.

Small habits create big results over time.

What activities could be on your notecard?

➜ Create/share industry-related content on your LinkedIn profile.

➜ Tailor your resume and cover letter for a job posting of interest.

➜ Grow your LinkedIn network with intentional connections.

➜ Set up an informational interview with a new connection to be a student of their career path and what they do!

➜ Add one company to your target company list and follow the company on socialmedia.

Get to it! You got this!

Turn Heads with Three Resume Formatting Tips

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Everyone wants their resume to turn heads.

Skip the template and create your own format within Microsoft Word. Use shading, borders and uniformity with font and spacing.

Three additional tips that will turn heads:

+ Switch your margins to narrow to access more of the page. Even though you will use more of the page, remember white space is your friend. Let your text breathe by giving adequate spacing between headings and lines of text.

+ Insert a table with white borders to showcase targeted accomplishments and expertise in the top third of your resume.

+ Use bold and italics to call attention to the most important information. Guide the reader to your greatness!

Shout out to my past colleague, Robert Smith, for this awesome meme!

What is Your Font Saying About You?

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Did you know there is a psychology of font? A font can make one resume look modern versus another old school. Even professional versus unprofessional.

A few tips to consider as you decide what style is right for your resume:

+ Choose a universal font. A universal font is found on just about every operating system from Windows to Mac. I recommend avoiding Times New Roman as it is a bit outdated and overused. I once heard it described as the “sweatpants” of font.

+ Ensure font is readable on paper and screens. Most resumes are viewed first on screens (i.e. phone or desktop) and then paper. Make sure your resume is readable on both modalities. Serif fonts are recommended for high-level executives, finance, law or science whereas Sans Serif is more modern for innovative or creative fields.

+ Consider using two different fonts. A corresponding font for headings and main body text is ideal to create impact and distinction among other applicants. Examples are Arial Black for headings with Arial text or Calibri with Cambria headings.

Create Your Own Job: The Practice of Resume Writing

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I finally figured out a way to maximize my talents and get a better paycheck at my existing job.❞

I received this email from a resume coaching client last week about her new job - a promotion SHE created when a vacancy occurred in her company.

❝While we were reviewing resumes and interviewing candidates, it occurred to me that I was just as qualified to do the job as any of the applicants. So I pitched the idea of absorbing the position and running my own department. Plus, it comes with a significant bump in pay.❞

Uncovering your value through the resume writing process gives you the courage to own it & speak up! How can you leverage your skills & achievements?