Over the last several weeks, I have been on a search/hiring committee, helping one of my consulting client's secure a pool of top candidates for a key executive position.
During a few of the committee's meeting – reviewing resumes and talking about the applicants in general – we all found ourselves struck by how "unreal" people tend to make themselves on resumes and in person.
It's as if a majority of the applicants went into the process with the goal of "sounding important" on paper. What's sad is that a solid chunk of the candidates have backgrounds that stand on their own and would rise to the top by presenting those backgrounds in a powerful, thoughtful manner.
I have to say, this is a key reason why hiring a Career Strategist (like me!) is so beneficial. When we're writing about ourselves, it's tough to get out of our own way in bringing our best to the surface. It's disheartening to see competent, credentialed people come off as less than.
Some things to keep in mind.
1) Bring the best version of you to the surface. The key here is the "of you" part. Never let your essence disappear from how you present yourself.
2) Be articulate. Don't get too soundbite-y and definitely don't get too verbose. Practice packaging the best of you powerfully and succinctly.
3) Stay calm. It's feelings of desperation that often compel us to say and do things that aren't natural. Check your state of mind when you are working on your resume and preparing for an interview.
Want more? Check out this post I wrote several years ago.