The Recorded Resume

Having a hard time getting that resume out of your head and onto the page? I mean, what’s so hard, right? It’s just an inventory of skills and work history. Well, an inventory of skills and work history that can make a difference between getting the job you want or not.

Matt Linderman of 37signals thinks writer’s block is sometimes just typer’s block.

See, you’ll be talking about an idea and nail it. But then when you sit down and try to type it out, it just doesn’t come out right. You dance around the idea. Words get in the way of what you’re trying to say.

A solution that’s worked for us: Record the conversation where you get it out right. When you speak an idea, it engages a different part of your brain than when you write it. You often say it clearer when you’re just riffing aloud. And you get to more gut-level stuff too. You bypass that "should I say this?" filter. You get it straight from your gut/brain instead of your fingers.

I think he may be onto something.

When you get stuck on your resume, try recording yourself talking about the day-to-day tasks and accomplishments of each job in your history.  This will help flesh things out, and you’ll find a lot of  "oh yeah, I did that too while I was there" moments.  This is great interview prep, too.

When you’re finished, transcribe the good bits for your resume, then listen again with an ear toward refining your interview performance.

For more on resumes, see the Dice Resume Center.

— Chad Broadus

One Response to “The Recorded Resume”

  1. Thanks for the inspiration, you are very perceptive. For many reasons, experienced people have problems conveying it! One reason is that you’ve done so much, that trying to make it sound like a “big deal” falls flat, and staring at the resume searching for magic, you begin to doubt whether or not what you do is, in fact, a big deal at all. Another main reason is that when you are working most successfully, you are encapsulating most tasks to the point where “developed website” or “automated data import process” really includes 1,000s of steps and valuable skills that you summarize in ways that are not sexy on a resume. I know…I’m going through this phase right now! And your advice has opened a door for me – so Cheers, and thanks again,
    –Bill Gibbs