Sunday, March 15, 2015

The exact resume template that landed me my first six figure job

My first resume took me hours of embarrassing writing. I'd waste time looking at a sparse document filled with my mediocre accomplishments. To improve the resume I'd pick out better fonts, rearrange the order, and stylize the language. All this effort was directed towards the wrong tasks. That first draft took way longer than it should have.

Now I know what makes a great resume and it is hard work. I can only write a great resume when I put aside distractions like fonts, bullet points, and specific accomplishments. None of the details are as important as I tell myself they are. The real important task is to write down everything, but that requires me to be honest and that is scary.

To write a great resume I need to write down all my accomplishments in one document. That is scary because it forces me to actually see what I have done and what I have not done. I'd rather check my email, or otherwise occupy my time with something I can label as important than take a good look at myself. 

Not until I face the facts that I have not become the fairytale my parents told me I would become can I write a stunning resume. Not until I admit to myself that I have not accomplished all that I dreamed I would, not until I admit that I haven't always worked my hardest, not until I see me for who I really am can I write a resume that truly demonstrates my talents. Not until I truly understand my weaknesses can I turn them into strength.

The hardest part of writing a great resume is getting started. First I need to take that painful step of listing my life as a series of events and see that they only fill half of a page. To get over the paralyzing fear I have developed a writing method. I simply write down everything. I start writing and I don't stop for spelling, I don't stop for run-on sentences, I don't stop to rephrase anything. I just keep writing.

To keep my flow I have created a list format so that if I get stuck I can continue on without interruption. Any interruption is an excuse to quit and at the beginning stages of a resume I need to just keep writing. Below you can download the template I use to get started on your own resume. 

The template is organized into sections for each job or accomplishment I have. I just start writing about each job, adding all the details I can think of. As soon as I feel I have written everything I can think of then I move on to the next job. After I get all my writing on the page then I can go through it and fact check my details, add missing items and edit the wording.

The resume template has 5 sections: contact information, qualifications, skills, experience, and education. The contact information is your name and how you can be reached. The qualifications section is two or three sentences showing why you are the perfect match for the job. The skills section is a list of the desired skills from the job description matched to your particular skills. The experience section lists your work history and includes details about each job. The education section lists degrees, schools and professional certifications.