16 QUESTIONS YOUR EXECUTIVE RESUME MUST ANSWER
Getting ready to write your executive resume requires some deep analytical thinking. Take your time and plan before you write your executive resume. The more you focus your executive resume, the better responses you will receive.
Contemplate the following and get started with the writing of your new and amazing executive resume.
1. What is your new career goal? Be very specific about the function and industry. A title would be great but not necessary. What is essential is that you are transparent (and sure) about the type of role you seek. Are you looking to assume an executive position in operations? Finance? Sales? Business Development? Technology Implementation? Even if you have worn many hats – one hat per resume!
2. What is your specialty? Bottom-line: what do you do well? Being result-driven is great (and expected), but to what end? What type of results? WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT! :-)
Are you great at creating opportunities for growth? Identifying top talent? Operationalizing? Reducing costs? Innovating? GREAT! How much? How often? Why? How?
3. What is in it for them? Your resume is about you, but it is not for you! You need to speak to your audience and heal those pain points.
We are not looking for this –> “You will hire someone who is hardworking, dedicated, and wonderful.” [Eye roll] We are looking for palpable, quantifiable, and bankable accomplishments.
4. Are you on LinkedIn? There are several ways you can answer this on your executive resume; one method is to include your LinkedIn URL in your executive resume’s header. (Please be sure to customize your LinkedIn URL). And, please make sure your LinkedIn profile is not a rehash of your executive resume.
5. What is your reputation/personal brand? This is important because it will evolve and strengthen your executive resume’s persuasive power by marketing beyond qualifications to promoting differentiation. (i.e., Unmatched talent that only you can offer.)
6. Where are you now? It is surprising how many times I come across an executive resume that has not been even slightly updated. If you don’t know what to write right now, the least you can do is add your current job title and employer. Yes? As a matter of fact, please do that right now! Thank you.
7. How did you exploit the role they assigned to you? This is critical. It is great to step into a role and perform an excellent job, but it is competition-outdistancing to reinvent it and exceed stakeholders’ expectations.
8. What change did you drive or what impact did you make? Is your governance the type that calls others to action or rallies diversified stakeholders behind a common goal?
9. How do you measure you were effective? Even if you are not in a metric-driven role, I assure you there is a way to tie your contributions to quantifiable success (perhaps indirectly). What influence did your leadership have on top and bottom-line?
10. Did you have P&L responsibility? How much? How did you strengthen P&L Management? Quantify.
11. Did you have direct reports? How many and at what level? Global? National? Regional?
12. Did you assume different positions within the company? Please list them all and if they were lateral moves or promotions.
13. Were you asked to take on special projects? If so, what was the goal? What was the value? What resulted?
14. Was this a first-time role or did you replace someone? Tell us what happened.
15. What major challenges did you need to overcome? Set the stage. Create contrast.
16. Who did you report to or work with directly? This is important, especially if the leader you most paired efforts with is in a position you are now seeking.
I could go on but I think this is enough fodder to get you going with executive resume revamp. Your executive resume must be clear, targeted, and rich with specifics to help set you apart.
Rosa Elizabeth Vargas
Certified Master Resume Writer (CMRW)
Nationally Certified Resume Writer (NCRW)
Academy Certified Resume Writer (ACRW)
Certified Career Management Coach (CCMC)