Top 5 Resume – DON’TS
I always spend a lot of time educating clients about what their resumes SHOULD include that I sometimes overlook the biggest MISTAKES they can make on your resume. Your resume is the very first impression that a potential employer receives, so make it stand out – in a good way! Do your research and spend the time on your resume that it deserves. I promise you will not be disappointed in the end.
This is obviously in no way a complete of list don’ts since there are so many specific no-no’s I encounter, but I consider these five my ultimate just don’t do it tips!
- Grammatical mistakes or misspellings. Spellcheck can be your best friend and will usually catch spelling errors for words found in the dictionary, but don’t count on spellchecker to catch jargon spelling mistakes, capitalization mistakes, homophonic issues, and typos that are actual other words (for years mine was ‘hte’ instead of ‘the’ 😊) (https://www.lifehack.org/). Seriously, take the time to read, reread, and reread again to make sure you don’t have any grammatical or spelling errors. PRO TIP: Print off your resume when reviewing and give to a trusted friend or family member to also read through. They might catch something you missed.
- Headshots. Unless you are a model or someone looking to be hired on appearance, just don’t do it. Do you really want someone to make a decision on whether you would make a good fit for a position based upon your appearance? I’m no spring chicken and no cover girl, but do I want to announce my age on my resume? Besides, if recruiters really want to see what you look like they will likely find you on social media (so monitor your content or make sure your settings are private). PRO TIP: Include a URL link to your LinkedIn profile where recruiters can see your professional headshot along with all your wonderful qualifications.
- Personal References. I get what you’re trying to convey (your upfront and have nothing to hide), but just don’t include the personal information for your references. You can say “References Available Upon Request” – or something to that affect – but don’t just give a potential employer your references’ information. That should be something provided by you at a later date and with express consent given to the potential employer.
- Salary. You don’t want to be knocked out of the race before you get to the gate, do you? Salaries should be negotiable based upon your experience, skill level, and the total benefits package offered. Who’s to say you wouldn’t take less salary in exchange for more PTO, better flexibility, or other perks being offered? If the job posting requires salary information or expectations, include it in your cover letter but I always let employers know that salary is negotiable based upon the total benefits package being offered. Otherwise, you could include a separate document which addresses/lists your salary history.
- Personal Information (Age, Race, Religion, Nationality). These are all legally protected areas from outright discrimination against employment, but unfortunately it still happens. Just don’t give anyone the reason to stereotype you or pass on your resume because of personal information.
Again, there are many more resume don’ts that are specific to each individual’s situation but these are my Top 5 Resume – Don’ts. If you would like a professional’s opinion, send me your resume for a free consultation.