7 Common Resume Mistakes

  1. Using a Job Objective header.
  2. Formatting the text in a way that is not easy to read quickly from top of page to bottom.
  3. Making spelling and grammar mistakes.
  4. Listing job functions not quantifiable results you’ve achieved on the job for your employer.
  5. Using a Resume Wizard template.
  6. Stealing information from a “best sample resume” found on Google.
  7. Using vague language or puffery in an attempt to sell yourself.

The reasons why you shouldn’t do these things:

I’ve seen that without fail people who use a Job Objective header state under this header: To use my skills to advance in my career. No. No. No. Your resume should detail what specific skills, traits, and experience you have that will benefit the company not you. If you’ve nailed down the perfect job for you and are applying for jobs that are in sync with your personality of course you’ll be able to advance in your career.

Over and over I’ve also seen that when a person uses a professional format for the text it makes an immediate improvement. This could be the sole reason you weren’t getting called for interviews in the past: the content is okay and the graphics are off-putting.

For any job and especially one that requires attention to detail making spelling and grammar mistakes will land your resume in the trash pile in seconds.

To stand out from other candidates who have performed the same functions on a job you must list quantifiable results you achieved in your positions.

It goes without saying that a Resume Wizard template is not a good idea for crafting your compelling sales pitch. In 2021 any job applicant should and must be able to create outstanding graphics for their resume on their own. Without relying on a Wizard that has aqua text or uses a photo. No photos on a resume either.

I have rarely discovered a “best sample resume” via a Google search that is any good. You can search for a great resume sample for the job you’re applying for. Only use your judgment to figure out how to customize what you find in your own words. Some sample resumes are OK. Most leave a lot to be desired.

In the 1990s I saw a resume that stated a person “walked on water.” Unless you’re Jesus you cannot claim to have walked on water. This resume also claimed that the person “made order out of chaos.”

Author: Christina Bruni

Christina Bruni is the author of the new book Working Assets: A Career Guide for Peers. She contributed a chapter "Recovery is Within Reach" to Benessere Psicologico: Contemporary Thought on Italian American Mental Health.

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