A good executive resume has what it takes to answer your employer’s key question that is—“What is in it for me?” As it will be reviewed by top-level recruiters, such as the CEO, COO, CFO or any member of the board, make sure that it will let them know how you will be able to help them solve issues in their business. This is what each of them wants to know!
With this in mind, you should work on your resume to convey your value to the company, and what better way to this than using the best format for this very important document? Here are some tips you can pick up:
Details to Include
A role of an executive is to have the foresight and innovation to lead a department or the entire organization to success, which means that you should illustrate such ability by providing examples. However, simply touting the accomplishments and results of your previous employers would not be enough to land the position, and you should let your next employer know what specific insights and guidance you contributed, along with the following:
- The role you played in formulating plans and strategies.
- Processes and tasks you completed, especially on employee coordination and management.
- Tangible measures of executive duties you performed, including efficiency improvements, profits from specific projects and the number of employees managed.
- Significant and relevant executive decisions you made and their impact on projects and processes.
One-inch margins can make your resume look amateur, while anything less than 0.5 inch will make it look like having too much text on the page/s or even cut it short for print quality. This means that the appropriate margins would be anything between 0.5 to 0.7 inches. By using these measurements, there will be not so much of white space and they will be enough to ensure information does not look crammed and your document looking well-balanced all throughout. Also, it will make your resume aesthetically appealing and looking professional to the one who will review it.
As fonts can have a significant effect on the beauty of a resume, you should focus on choosing among those that will subtly impress, rather than detract. Here are the best font faces for an executive resume:
Though it is not particularly sophisticated, this is a sans serif font that people are familiar with. It may border on banal, but it is surely a safe bet.
You might be used to using Times New Roman (TNR), as it is the one highly accepted for papers, but like Arial, it might be commonplace. Instead, you can opt for Times, which appears less awkward and condensed, especially at smaller sizes, making it suitable for digital use.
This font was particularly designed for reading on computer screens, so it should be both easy and pleasant to read.
This has a simple elegance that looks polished both on print and on screen.
As times changed, so as the criteria for resume length. Though some experts strongly suggest to make it short (one page if possible), write your resume to be long enough to entice your employer to invite you for a job interview. Basically, there is no hard-and-fast rule for this, but you should include the most important elements in your resume, such as your career objective, occupation, years of experience, previous employers, scope of accomplishments and training and education. Keep it concise and focused on your key selling points.
When re-working on your resume when applying for an executive position, check if you are missing some of the following elements:
Focus – To create a good executive resume, you need it to be able to deliver a clear and succinct message about the value you will bring, focusing on the target position and company. By doing so, you can clearly demonstrate your value by emphasizing the aspects of your experience and expertise that will match the employer’s needs and minimizing those that do not. Also, your focus should be consistent throughout, so if you state in the beginning that your ability to effectively utilize opportunities in new markets is your key strength, then make sure to give concrete examples of success in this area throughout the document.
Value – Keep in mind that describing your achievements is as equally powerful as citing your essential job responsibilities to make a resume effective. But as job responsibilities are simply the things that you are supposed to do, achievements show what you actually did and how your abilities can make a difference for your prospective company. However, make sure that you will be very specific when writing about accomplishments. For example, avoid saying “increased sales” without stating how much you had increased them and avoid mentioning that a workflow design you made has boosted productivity without saying what the improvement was.
Context – In order for the hiring manager to truly appreciate your achievements, he or she should be able to get valuable context. If you state that you were able to increase sales by 10%, for example, he or she might be impressed, but if you state that you were able to reverse a 4-year sales decline and increase it by 10% in the first year, then he or she will certainly appreciate your accomplishment. Simply put, try to provide context in each description of the responsibilities on your resume, rather than just merely describing it.
Good Design – True, employers would judge your resume at first glance, so make sure it is visually appealing. Its design should be clean, easy-to-read and has the quality to draw attention to key information. For example, if you want the person who will check it to focus on the top brands you have marketed, then you can highlight them on your resume.
Writing a Strong Executive Resume Really Does Make a Difference
Writing a resume might be a tedious work for you, but rushing things to complete it as quickly as possible would rob you of the opportunities that you supposedly deserve. By following the formatting and writing tips mentioned in this article, you will be able to see an improvement in the response rate to your application process.