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Objection! How NOT to Start Your Resume
copyright © by Kevin Donlin

Kevin Donlin, Managing Editor of 1 Day Resumes.

Well begun is half-done. But far too many resumes begin with objective statements that can only be described as half-baked.

As a professional resume writer, I review and analyze nearly 2,000 resumes every year. And in the vast majority of cases, almost every job seeker could use a better opening objective.

To show you what I mean, here are three example objectives from actual resumes sent to me for analysis. (My comments are in parentheses.) Each resume got off to a horrible start as a result of these objectionable objectives.

Objective 1
To obtain a responsible (as opposed to irresponsible?) and challenging (what, you don't like dull work?) position where my education and work experience will have valuable application (instead of a worthless one?)

Objective 2
To contribute professionalism and experience to a challenging position offering ample skill utilization and growth opportunities. (This is just plain gobbledygook, and could describe any job on earth, really.)

Objective 3
Seeking a challenging career with a progressive organization which will utilize my skills, abilities and education in management, product management, operations, purchasing and buying . (Sorry, I gave up halfway through. Chances are, employers reading that sleep-inducing sentence will, too.)

OK. So much for how not to start your resume.

You can stand out from the crowd if you'll just start your from the employer's point of view, instead of your own. And use everyday language as you write.

Sounds simple, doesn't it?

It is.

When writing your objective, make sure it answers this question: "What's in it for me?" That's the question on every employer's mind as he or she reads your resume.

Here's an example objective, to get you started:

Management position in procurement where over 10 years of experience will add value to operations.

Avoid such trite phrases as: "seeking a chance for advancement," "where my skills will be utilized," or "where I can further my career." I've seen each of these on resumes that were badly hampered as a result.

So, to keep your objective from being objectionable (and torpedoing your job search), put the focus where it belongs -- on the employer and their needs.

And don't try to impress readers with your vocabulary. Write the way you would talk to your manager during a meeting. To see if you've succeeded, read your objective out loud.

Best of luck to you!

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