Common Resume Myths & Misconceptions

By Matthew C. Keegan

For the person crafting their first résumé the task can seem a little bit daunting, even a bit frightening. Human Resources [HR] specialists, résumé writing professionals, school advisors, and even friends and family members all have their say. When it comes down to it you must have a résumé you feel comfortable with especially since you will be the one to read it the most. Let’s take a look at some common résumé myths and misconceptions you need to be aware of before writing your first résumé.

1. Pictures are a no-no.

In most European countries it is customary that a head shot photograph be included with your résumé. In the US, most résumé writing professionals frown on this practice or are outright hostile to résumé photographs. Let me tell you they are wrong to be so rigid. If you are in the fashion or aviation industries your picture is expected

to be included especially when it is stipulated as part of the application process. Yes, there are state laws against discriminating, but there are none that I am aware of explicitly forbidding you from including a photograph!

2. Leave off your website address. Just below your name, address, contact telephone numbers and email address you can include your world wide web home page. Your website is an attractive ‘addition’ to any résumé as long as it meets the following two criteria: (a) that it is indeed attractive; and (b) that it isn’t overly controversial [too political, too suggestive, etc.]. Please keep in mind that for some positions controversy

is

warranted. If in doubt, ask!

3. Hobbies and Interests.

For the person who has built up a lifetime of work experience, I suggest they leave this information out. For the person entering the workforce, this type of information can be useful, even necessary. You don’t have a solid work history to list and the HR people need to have some idea about who you are. Emphasize awards and achievements

over specific hobbies and interests

if you can.

4. You should only use white or off white business paper.

This suggestion does apply to most fields, but if you are in creative fields — such as music or fashion — alternate color schemes can get you noticed. You may want to run your idea by a friend first; electric pink copier paper just might annoy even the most open person!

5. Font color must be black.

Okay, let’s not get crazy here. If you want to use colorful paper, don’t use crazy font color schemes. You do want someone to notice your résumé, right? Oh, they will notice it alright!

Stick with black, but use a dark navy if it matches the paper. All other colors can cause eye strain!

Ultimately, you must create a résumé that makes you feel comfortable. Try not to get boxed in by a rigid set of rules, especially if you are just starting out. Let flair and creativity have their place as you are marketing yourself

and not a concept

.

For additional career advice articles, please visit The Article Writer — Matt’s flagship website.

Is It Time For A Resume Makeover?

As one year ends and another one begins, it is easy to reflect on what is past while looking forward with to the new year with anticipation. A new year offers people an opportunity to start anew — new clothes, fresh vacation plans, even a new career.

Happy New Year!One area that may be needing urgent renewal is your resume. Have you taken a good look at it lately? If not, you could have a document that is outdated or no longer relevant, just the kind of information that could cost you your next job.

How often should you update your resume? At least every time some of the information on it changes, but definitely at least once a year. Please read on for some helpful tips on updating your current copy.

  • Your personal information. You haven’t moved in five years and your cell phone number is still the same. How about your home phone number or your email address? Have they changed since you last updated your copy? If your information is incorrect, employers may not be able to contact you.
  • Your objective. You may still be looking for full-time employment, but if the type of job you want has changed, then you need to update your objective accordingly. Better yet, write your objective to state what you can do for the company instead of what you want from them.
  • Your references.

    If you are listing references on your resume, then you must remove them. Current references should be listed on a separate document and shared only upon request. You can change the final line of your resume to read — References: Furnished upon request. That should do it.

The airlines are always looking for sharp people and one of the steps in the screening process is your resume. Make sure that your resume is up to date, accurate, and interesting. Have a friend check it for errors and keep a fresh copy handy to mail out as needed.

Set yourself apart from the pack by resolving to update your resume in the new year. Your goals are within site; don’t let your resume hold you back!

Further Reading

Flight Attendant Resource Guide