LinkedIn Resume

Gloom, Despair and Agony on Me: Taking the Pain Out of Resumes and LinkedIn

This was a line in a song Roy Clark and Buck Owens of the old TV show HeeHaw used to sing. For many candidates in transition their resume reads like a sad song. The reason? Everyone has issues in their history. No one today has a perfect career path—downsizing, pandemics, industry demise, etc. have pretty much made perfection impossible. So, what do many candidates do?

  • They seek a jury of opinion from people on the Internet. (i.e., “I posted it on Facebook.”)
  • They seek a jury of opinion from purported experts (i.e., “I have a friend who knows a guy that worked in HR years ago.”)
  • They fudge the facts, cajole, connive and attempt to massage the issue. (i.e., “I came up with a bogus excuse that’s believable, right?”)

This strategy rarely serves the candidate well. More often than not, it sends up red flags with an employer that something doesn’t quite add up. In other cases, the attempt to spin doctor the facts beg more questions than an honest telling of the story.

The solution: Come clean, be honest but factual. Rare is the case where there is not a politically correct, sanitized way to tell the story without assassinating one’s character. As a client once said, “Can’t you just twist and spin this?” My reply, “Uh, no, not ethically without doing you more harm than good.” And that should be a violation of any good writer’s hypocritic oath!

Are you struggling to tell your story? Address perceptual negatives? Manage your reality? The physician who treats himself has a fool for a patient. Sometimes an objective eye can work miracles.

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