Trying to be all things to all employers
just doesn't work any more, if it ever did. The candidate whose resume says "Project Manager" AND "Engineer" has to decide which she is. Otherwise, she comes across to potential employers as confused. And unfocused. And, perhaps,
Think about those who specialize
and how they become known for their specialty, their “one thing”. Examples: "Google" is synonymous with "search". "Mercedes" means "luxury and performance". "Hershey's" means
. Because of this focus, those companies are considered experts in those areas – because they deal with their
. The narrower your focus, the more you're looked to as
knowledgeable, effective and successful
, especially if you can prove it with your success stories. You are the expert.
A job hunter
in her 50s contacted me, and her resume was headed by 4 wildly different titles:
Director of Sales – Director of Sales Operations – Project Manager – IT Management
I asked her about this. “I’m really good at all of those” was her answer. I’m sure she is. Those who have been in their career for 20 or more years usually
But you are not a menu, and your
is not a menu someone else picks from.
Instead, it should zero in on
favorite and best role
. Yes, in this way I truly "push" candidates to clarify first for themselves what they really WANT to go after because if you ignore your own wishes and goals, no one else will honor them.
Or, as I like to say to candidates,
a good resume forces you to clarify what YOU want.
Your approach should be “Here’s my favorite thing that I am
at, and I can prove it.” You’re much more likely to be believed – and thus, to get that interview phone call
for that one thing.
shows a potential employer that you know what you want and what you’re good at, and thus are probably good at it.
You can certainly add keywords that cover your other areas to use further down your resume. And LinkedIn. But stay focused on your number one priority.
So before you list "Product Manager / Marketing Manager / Project Manager" on your resume,
Cite your success stories in that single area, show your knowledge and enjoyment of it,
and you'll see a difference in response for roles