Resume Tips: 5 Things to Do Before You Start Writing
In order to land the perfect job, you'll have to conduct a thorough, aggressive search. In order to launch the perfect search, you'll need to create a convincing, relevant, and beautifully written resume. And in order to create the perfect resume, you'll need to take five critical steps, and you'll want to do these things before you open up a blank file and start typing a single word of text. Move down through this checklist, and once you've taken care of these items, you'll be officially ready to start hunting down the job of your dreams.
This is a necessary part of the job search process, and if you think it's a waste of time, think again. Far too often, those who can't seem to get off the market and those who accepted the wrong jobs and seriously undermined their lives and careers are guilty of the same huge, common mistake: They didn't daydream enough…or at all. You need to understand what you want before you head out the door to chase it down. Daydreaming is the best way to clarify your goals.
2. Gather your personal data
Skipping this step is the easiest way to get distracted and slide into a swamp of procrastination. Before you start to write, gather the names of your previous employers and supervisors, the years you worked for each one, the completion dates for each of your educational accomplishments, phone numbers, contact details, and major accomplishments. Bring all this stuff to your desk and THEN start working it into your document.
3. Clear the clutter
Find a calm workspace where you can focus your thoughts. Then mark out a schedule so you'll have clear, distraction-free start and stop times for the search process. Try not to conduct your job search while you're clocked in at your current place of employment and avoid using company resources to take care of your own business. But if you put off the search until the evenings and weekends, make sure the time you set aside is steady and sacrosanct.
4. Secure the support of others
Let your spouse, parents, children and friends in on your plans, and do this on a need-to-know basis. Make sure you have support from your spouse on issues like childcare so you can grab the distraction-free job search hours you need in order to focus.
5. Fix your online persona
Since your potential employers will certainly be conducting online searches of your name, make sure you exercise some control over what they find. Keep your social media profiles professional and lock down your privacy settings. Make sure your blog, personal website, movie reviews, fan fiction, comments, and Tweets are all either invisible or otherwise can't harm your prospects. As a rule of thumb, if you're proud if it and you can stand behind it, it stays. If not, tuck it away. But if you think prospective employers won't read it, prepare for a surprise.
NOW You're Ready to Create Your Resume
After you've moved down through each item on this list, you'll be ready to start drafting, editing, and submitting your formal application. Visit MyPerfectResume for tools and tips.