Since beginning my quest to change industries I have had to think a lot about reinventing myself. That requires translating my skills into the language of my new industry of interest. You wouldn’t think it would be so difficult to go from Senior Editor & Director of Photography, a journalism environment, to Creative Director, a marketing environment, but it has been a challenge. Even adding a business graduate degree to my repertoire doesn’t explain how my skills relate on my resume. So I thought I’d share some things that have been effective in getting me a second look.
I made a list of all the skills I possess, not just from the description of my past job but from the items listed in job postings for jobs I wanted. For example, when a posting lists desired experience as “must be comfortable working in a fast paced environment” You may want to change your resume skill of “works well on deadline” to “experienced managing fast paced work environment.” Oddly, this seems like a subtle change, but in a non-journalism environment, working on deadline categorizes you as a production individual. To say that you have experience at making good management decisions quickly, you need to use the language they use.
I think it is also worth having an expert look at your resume. Consultations are free, and you can often find some reasonably priced resume writing services that do great work. It is often hard to justify the over priced resume service. You can often find experienced people with reasonable prices and a wealth of ability. I recently had my Resume redone by Resume-Express.
I chose them because I liked the sample work shown and they really listened to me in our phone review of my resume. I also found it refreshing that their experience as human resources talent acquisition managers inspired them to start this small business together. They receive resume’s in their day jobs and know what they are looking for. If you want to see for yourself, take a look at the transformation of my resume. I’m flattered that Alex Fowler, senior writer at Resume-Express gave the one I wrote on myself a solid B but I think the one they wrote, is an A+.