In many lines of work, creativity gets you points. Be careful, however, about getting too creative with your resume. While an interesting design can help you stand out, it’s important not to go overboard.
Step 1: Determine How far is too far
It depends on the accepted decorum in the field you’re seeking to enter. While buying a billboard featuring your picture and a job plea might score a home run for an advertising position, it likely wouldn’t get the same reaction in a more-conservative field like banking.
Certain resume tactics are highly likely to receive negative attention in most fields: Adding glitter or an odd background. Using perfume. Appearing at your prospective employer’s office in costume to drop off your resume. If such tactics are considered well outside the norm in the field to which you’re applying, you may find yourself the butt of jokes rather than the recipient of a juicy offer.
Step 2: Make sure your resume is still readable regardless of design
While an interesting design used in your resume can help you stand out from the pile, you do not want graphics and format to overwhelm and blot out content.
Step 3: Having fun in your resume may result in unintended effects
You may find yourself the butt of jokes rather than the recipient of a juicy offer because of:
– Attempts to be funny or cute.
– Coming across as boastful or arrogant.
– Using slang, profanity or emoticons.
– Sharing highly personal information.
The best way to set yourself apart from the pack is to find out what qualities hiring managers in your specific field seek in resumes. While most organizations want to see evidence of your technical and functional job skills, they’re also looking for clues about your:
– Emotional intelligence.
– Passion for your work and work ethic.
– Ability to work as part of a team.
– Communication skills.
– Ability to follow through.
Distinguishing yourself involves coming across as professional, competent – and creative.
Step 4: The right ways to stand out
You want to come across as innovative, but you don’t want to go so far that you’re not considered a serious candidate. There are ready-to-use solutions such as branded online profile instead of standard resume, or examples of nontraditional resumes that will make a positive impression. Social hiring platforms can help you transform your resume and stand out from the crowd without going too far.
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