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4 Secrets of an Attention-Getting Resume

This story originally ran on and was picked up by Inc. Magazine's online edition.

Acronyms are fun because they allow us to quickly state our reaction to something without having to explain it. Whether you like them or not, each of us probably doesn’t go a full day without seeing ‘lol’ at least once.

Women laughing - Attention-getting resume

Honestly, who’s doing all this laughing out loud?

One acronym of particular usefulness is TLDR – Too Long, Didn’t Read. If this applies to your resume, you’re in big trouble.

Resumes contain plenty of detailed information by nature. It serves as your own, personal sales brochure, and there’s plenty you have to say. The secret to saying everything in your resume while still keeping it readable is to organize and prioritize the information on your resume. When you do it right, most of what you want to say will be on the top half of the first page of your resume.

Everything else will serve to back up the information in the top half of the first page.

Here’s how write an attention-getting resume:

1.     Clear Contact Information – List your name, phone number, email address, and a link to your LinkedIn profile. That’s it. There’s no need to list your address, city, or state, as businesses rarely use snail mail. If they do, they’ll ask you for your address. Also, there is no need to list two or even three phone numbers, or even indicate whether it’s a home or cellular phone. Give the best phone number where you can be reached, and be done with it.

2.     A Brief Self-Description – Much like your Elevator Speech, this description shows who you are and what you do. Give your professional field, the number of years you’ve worked in that field, the industries you’ve worked in, and what makes you special. This description takes the place of the old-fashioned Career Objective, which addresses what you want. Instead, tell who you are and what you have to offer.  

3.     Your Skills – These are the skills that you bring to the table and one of the main reasons an employer will hire you. Each of us has an entire world of skills that we can offer. It’s your job to prioritize those skills and focus on the skills that are the most valuable and unique to your set.

If you have trouble coming up with your skills, as most people do, research the job postings that appeal to you most. Find one that fits best with the skills you have. Pull out a highlighter and highlight all the skills that you have that are listed on the job posting. That will give you a great start to your own skills inventory.

4.     Personalize – After your resume is written and you begin applying for jobs, notice the skills that each potential employer is looking for and use the words and phrases that the employer uses to ensure your resume is a perfect match for the job at hand.


When it’s done right, all of this information is available to the reader immediately, without having to search through years of experience trying to find the information they need.

Having a resume that is too long to read is no laughing matter. Be sure your resume quickly states who you are and what you have to offer.  

Joe Konop


One Great Resume



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