Whew! That old 2011 is all over and done with, right? Good thing, too. But before you throw 2011 completely out the window (my year always ends with Super Bowl weekend…), it’s time to do something important: update your resume so you have it ready for 2012. How? Let’s take a look.
1. Add in your goal attainment for 2011
You had your goals in your performance review so now is the time to add them to your resume. You probably won’t use all of them when it gets down to a specific job posting, but that’s not the point. If you don’t record the goals and the results, you won’t end up remembering what they were and why they were important when it comes time to get your resume ready for a job posting.
You do it now so you have the numbers.
2. Tell your story
I have this saying that every number has a story. If a budget changes 5% from one year to the next, there is a story about why the change takes place. Is it cutting expenses? Adding revenue? What expenses, what revenue?
You see, the numbers are important to prove what you have done. But the story is what gets you the interview, if not the job. The story is what tells the hiring manager the plan for achieving the goal, the obstacles you’ve overcome, and the ultimate business results you’ve achieved.
Now is the time to put the story of the goal numbers in your resume. Now is the time to remember those little tidbits of information that helped you achieve your target goal. Now it the time to record the team’s discord and how they came together to achieve the goal.
The numbers matter. But, in an interview situation, the story behind the numbers makes the difference.
3. Review your skill sets
Your job skills get you the phone interview. The more your job skills matches up with the job description, the better your chance of getting the phone interview. Not getting the job in a face-to-face interview, but getting that crucial, initial phone interview.
Did you add a new programming language? Work with — or support — a different department with different business needs from you? Get a certification? Attend two weeks of training?
All of these are significant items to include in the resume. Remember, the more checks you get next to the skills needed for a job, the better your chances of getting that initial phone interview.
4. Add your new professional associations and rewards
Many of us have professional organizations that support our careers. If you’ve joined one, now is the time to add it to your resume.
Or, if you’ve been elected to a position in your professional organization, you should add it. Those sorts of positions display leadership capabilities and show motivation to do your work.
Your resume is your career document
Look, when you get down to specific job openings, all the crazy resume rules come into play: how long the resume should be, how you write the accomplishments, and all that related stuff. But now, not looking for a job, your resume becomes the career journal that records what you’ve accomplished and how you have done it.
The memory is a fragile thing. It won’t remember all those cool things you did when you completed 2011. It won’t remember the hardships you went through to achieve your goals. It won’t remember the stories that were created from the work you did.
But, your resume will remember. If you update it now so you can close out 2011.
I couldn’t wait for 2011 to end. But I accomplished a lot. What did you accomplish? And is it on your resume?