5 Things Your Resume Doesn’t Need

2018-06-28 by Samantha

These 5 Things Can Be Left Off Your Resume

You may not realize how little time it takes a potential employer to make up their mind about you. It often takes only a quick glance of your resume before they decide whether or not they want to keep reading. If you give them too little information, they know you don’t have much to offer. On the other hand, if you give them too much information, they know you can’t get to the point.

When you sit down to write your first resume, think long and hard about the right balance of detail and clarity. Don’t feel like you’re required to include every section you see on a sample resume. Many of those samples were written before the quick-draw hiring process of today. If your first draft includes any of the following, delete it now:

1. A summary filled with buzzwords.

How would you like to work at a place where employees leverage their core competencies to create significant competitive advantages aligned with the strategic needs of their clients?

Did that sentence make your brain hurt? Well, you’ll make a hiring manager’s brain hurt if you describe yourself as a professional and hardworking team player with a commitment to excellence in client service. Selling yourself in 30 seconds of simple language is what the interview is for, not the resume. Skip the summary and jump right into your experience. Which brings us to…

2. Previous jobs that have nothing to do with this job.

Unless you come from a very wealthy family, chances are you had a fairly mundane job to earn extra cash during high school or college. You might have gained some wisdom from that job that you can carry over to this one. For example, if you worked the counter at fast-food restaurant, you might have learned how to persuade people that, yes, they do want to add a dessert for only three dollars more. If you can’t make a connection between your mundane jobs and your career, leave them off your resume – especially if you’ve held more career-relevant jobs since then.

3. Skills that have nothing to do with this job.

You’re the best mechanic you know. Obviously, that’s a great talent when you have car trouble. But how does it help an employer if the job has nothing to do with fixing cars? Just like previous jobs, you have to make sure you can draw a connection between the ability you have and the ability they want. If you can’t, leave it off your resume altogether.

4. Your hobbies and interests.

What you do in your spare time only matters to an employer if you’ve learned a useful skill along the way, or achieved a milestone that demonstrates your discipline. Like your 30-second pitch, the time for a chat about your passion for travel is during the interview, if the hiring manager asks you what you like to do outside of work. You might think a “Hobbies and Interests” section adds color to your resume, but an employer’s decision to contact you is black and white.

5. “References available upon request.”

An employer will assume from the beginning that you’re willing to put them in touch with your references – if you have some good ones, that is. In the time it takes for you to figure out exactly how to fit this line in your resume so it doesn’t need its own page, you could be contacting former supervisors and colleagues and making sure they’ll vouch for you. Delete the line and get calling!


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