Recipe for a Standout Résumé – MT Minutes Video » Mind Tools Blog
Writing a Résumé MT Minutes

Recipe for a Standout Résumé – MT Minutes Video

August 25, 2021

©Getty Images/jakkapant turasen

In today’s highly competitive job market, you need to stand out from the crowd when applying for a new role. A strong résumé (or CV) will make an impactful first impression on your potential employer, before you’ve even met them!

Writing a résumé is a bit like following a recipe – there are some key ingredients you’ll need to include, but you should also feel free to add your own flair, too. But be careful not to go against the grain – one wrong ingredient and your résumé will be unpalatable to the recruiter.

Our Mind Tools Minute Video

Take a look at our short video for tips on how to write a standout résumé:

You can also learn more from our article, Writing Your Résumé (CV).

What to Include in Your Résumé

Most importantly, include your name and contact details at the top of the page. Use your preferred phone number and a professional-sounding email address. MonkeyBrainz82@google.com won’t look great to the hiring manager, trust me!

You’ll also want to provide a summary of your relevant skills and qualifications.

The final thing a hiring manager needs to see is a brief outline of your work history and recent achievements. You can also mention any volunteer work you’ve completed. Remember, your most recent roles are the most relevant, so use reverse chronological order.

What Not to Include in Your Résumé

A common mistake when stating your attributes is to use too many adjectives. Words like “passionate,” “keen” and “independent” should be kept to a minimum. Instead, use powerful action words like, “completed,” “launched” and “negotiated.”

You should also avoid gimmicky templates, fonts and colors in your résumé. These can make your text difficult to read and be off-putting for the reader.

Finally, avoid going into lots of detail when you talk about your experience. A few standout statistics or key points will get the recruiter’s attention.

Do you have any more tips for writing a standout résumé? Let us know, in the comments below!


2 thoughts on “Recipe for a Standout Résumé – MT Minutes Video

  1. Ivar Pedro Joaquin Brandt Landinez wrote:

    Should resume include my photo? Pro’s and Con’s?

    1. Sarah Harvey wrote:

      Hi Ivar Pedro,

      That’s a really good question.

      In my experience of recruiting, I have found it to be quite distracting when people include a photo of themselves.

      The truth is we are all human and when we see a photo as part of the resume it is inevitable that we will either unconsciously or consciously take how the person comes across to us in the photo into account when deciding whether to short-list or not. Of course, this could work to your advantage but I would suggest it is more likely to lead to an increased risk of unconscious bias. Other people may have more positive experiences of including a photo with a resume but on balance I consider it more advantageous for you to focus on what you say about your skills and experience and get those across to your recruiter in the most impactful way.

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