John Moore/Getty Images
You spent countless hours crafting a nearly flawless resume. You tailor it to the specific job you’re applying for and write a killer cover letter to boot.
And yet, you never hear back.
That’s probably because it looked like a million other resumes out there.
Serial entrepreneur James Caan says in a recent LinkedIn post that he has seen thousands of resumes during the course of his career. “There are always some common mistakes that candidates tend to make,” he says. But, occasionally he’ll see “absolutely brilliant” ones that manage to stand out from the crowd.
The job seekers who write those resumes typically do these two things:
Clear the clichés.
There are certain buzzwords and phrases that constantly pop up on resumes, Caan says. “And the more employers see them, the less value they have.”
Your goal is to stand out from the crowd — so avoid using the clichés that you know everybody else will use. “Be creative with the way you describe yourself; you don’t want to be seen as someone who is simply using buzzwords they think employers want to hear.”
Employers want to know all about your achievements, so don’t be vague, Caan says. Tell them how you’ve been able to add value, or find and implement solutions, in previous jobs. “I have always believed that every member of an organization, whether it’s a sales director or a receptionist, can have their contribution measured in some form. It could be financial — you may have generated a certain amount of revenue, or made a certain amount of cost savings, in which case I want to know how much.” Attaching a number to what you have achieved gives the hiring manager a clearer picture of your value-add, he says.
See the full LinkedIn post here.
Want your business advice featured in Instant MBA? Submit your tips to firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include your name, your job title, and a photo of yourself in your email.
More From Business Insider