Saturday, January 8, 2011

Current Project Review - Updated Resumé

Accomplishments: Resumé = Mostly done
Personal Grade: B
Project Reflection: Room for improvement

   What is it about knowing you need to update your resumé that puts your mind straight into procrastination mode? In reality, updating your resumé is an excellent mind-exercise that I believe should be done at least once a year, if not every six months. I will be the first to admit that it has been more like sixteen months since I last even looked at my resumé. However, beyond potentially helping us land better jobs, resumés can do much more. It allows us to reflect on our accomplishments within the time period from which it was last complete. This naturally leads to a time to evaluate current goals and appropriately adjust them to fit your desired outcome.
   One thing about me is that I am not a huge fan of my writing. Believe me, I read the stuff over and over and over again. In that sense, I am my biggest fan. However, when I read my writing, I feel that it is not up to par with my expectations. Therefore; believe it or not, I am working to improve my writing skills. I actually manage a blog specifically for that purpose. I hope that through constant practice, my writing and communication skills improve even marginally.
   Anyway, so it is natural to say that I am not really happy with my resumé. I need to find ways to improve the presentation of my resumé. Yet, I am apprehensive about not following a cookie-cutter form for the document.
   One of the problems with my resumé is I am trying to use it to get into a new career. Most of my work experience starkly contrasts to making video games. I am struggling with this, because tradition states that you are supposed to state your experience. How can you better say, "Except for the job I currently have, I have always been in a position that was not exactly a match for me. I would like a job that would make any kid, or kid at heart, drool."? At interview time, I will probably say something close to that; however, that comes only if the resumé looks good. The bottom line is I will have to fill the paper with the experience I have. I do not yet have programming experience post-college, so I really have to fall back on my previous work experience.
   As long as we know we have to work with what we have, the best we can do is do very well in describing that experience. This is another place where my skills lack. I would say "I have never received a piece of paper that told me exactly what to do at a job." However, when I truly reflect upon jobs in my past, there have been a few times that I have worked under Standard Operating Procedures for various products. What I can say is I simply am not good at describing what I have done at my previous jobs. Usually, "everything" will not work. It definitely does not fill the page. You really have to use your words very artistically in the prior work experience section. My next draft of my resumé will definitely focus on beautifying this section and trying to sale what I have in terms of experience.
   There is always the possibility of going outside the box when creating a resumé. This is an idea that I am currently infatuated with. Instead of putting the work experience, I could put things that are more relevant to the job I might be going after. There is a time and a place for doing something out of the ordinary, a resumé for a software programming job probably is not that time or place.
   Anyway, now that I am through describing my resumé and what I plan to do to revise it next time around, let me know what you think of resumés. What is your critique of your own resumé? Do you even bother with one? If not, go and make one now.

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