Monday, June 25, 2007

Do You Recognize These Early Warning Signs of an Egocentric Resume? Best of reCareered - Page 3

How To Fix An Egocentric Resume:

Glad you asked…you’ll probably want the opposite of an Egocentric Resume, one that is written for the perspective of your resume’s 4 audiences (

Let’s call this an altruistic resume, the anti-egocentric resume. Since I’ve already covered writing for these audiences in depth, I’ll summarize, and give references to the detail. As a bonus, I’ll give detail on writing for Hiring Managers, and give still greater detail via link.
  • Audience #1: Make your resume database friendly through Resume Search Optimization. Write your resume like it’s a web page to be found by a Google search. This means writing an infinitely modifiable, one time use resume. For more details, see Resume Search Optimization at

  • Audience #2: Make your resume stand out to HR in just 15 seconds, because that’s all you get on average. Learn how to effectively use Resume Real Estate, club the reviewer over the head with your relevant skills, and grab the HR reviewer by the collar so you go in the interview pile, all in 15 seconds (

  • Audience #3: Hiring Managers want subject matter experts (see, not generalists. The best way to demonstrate subject matter expertise is to show you’ve already solved the company’s/department’s/hiring manager’s problems in past jobs. Show you’ve created Employer Value (See

    How can you show that? Research and network to gain insight into that area’s problems and opportunities. Once you can guess at problems and opportunities, show your achievements, and how you’ve accomplished them (hint…pick achievements that demonstrate you solving your target company’s problems). Make it active and numeric…I saved X% by doing Y. I increased sales by X% by doing Y. Using verbs like Managed, Collaborated, Participated in, shows that others achieved, not you. Make your resume altruistic, and give your reader what they want….results.

  • Audience #4: To appeal to the Hiring Manager’s boss & peers, network into the company through informational interviews to gain an understanding of communication style, culture, and what’s important to peers and managers. Incorporate this in your writing style. For more information on how to appeal to the 4th audience, see

  • My recruiter friends claim there’s a 5th Audience: Of course, Recruiters ... and I guess they’re right. Recruiters are somewhere between Audience #2 & #3, depending on experience. Great recruiters understand their clients, their culture, and the hard and soft skills they are looking for. Recruiters who can think like the hiring manager are like Audience #3. Less experienced recruiters are more like the HR screeners of Audience #2. For ways to encourage recruiters to keep you top of mind see

An altruistic resume incorporates the concept of WIFT - What’s In it For Them. Unfortunately most resumes are more egocentric and are written to feature WIFM (What’s In it For Me). See for more details of WIFT vs WIFM.

How can you look at your resume from the readers’ point of view and make yours an altruistic resume?

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