Resume

Avoiding Repetition In A Resume (When All Your Jobs Sound The Same)

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One of my clients came to me with a problem: she had held pretty much the same manager-level job during her entire career, only with different companies. Her resume felt boring, even to her, because every job sounded exactly alike.

Related: 7 Ways Your Resume Is Boring Just Like Everyone Else’s

I saw the problem immediately. Like many job hunters, she had focused her resume on her skills. And every job she held required almost exactly the same skill set. Anyone reading her resume would think that she had spent 10 years going nowhere.

The solution? We changed the focus of her resume to accomplishments. In every management position, she faced different challenges and had to come up with solutions. Every position involved different goals she had to meet. Every position required her to communicate with a different group of people, work on a different team or report to a different level of supervisor.

When we wrote about her accomplishments, her resume took on a whole new aspect. From yawn-worthy it went to exciting: here was a potential employee who brought value to one company after another.

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Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Robin Schlinger

Robin Schlinger is the founder of Robin’s Resumes which provides excellent services to those who value the best in resumes and career marketing documentation.

11 comments

  1. I do believe this post would be about 500% more useful with the before and after resumes linked up. Change the name and contact information for anonymity, but other than that, post as-is if possible. This could be a great resource but as it stands, it’s pretty vague.

  2. My problem is that I held similar positions in the same department for most of my 25 years at the same company. My last 2 positions were pretty much the same but with different titles.

    When I showed my resume to someone she thought I held the SAME position in the SAME department doing the SAME functions for 25 years.

    I now list my responsibilities & achievements for most of my career on the top and my other titles (without details) on the bottom. Is this right?

    • Dear STB03,

      That’s the resume format I used but for a different reason…I wanted the reader to see the magnitude of my accomplishments in stark relief, and then later scan the companies and titles. Make sure your list of accomplishments are pretty solid and meaty for the type of job you are going for. Having a list of weak accomplishments (weak in comparision to other candidates vying for the job), only serves to highlight that fact. So beef up your accomplishments with hard data…like money saved, sales increased, productivity increased, etc.

  3. Yes this is a good way to handle a “plateauing career”…focusing on what challenges you faced and accomplishments. Then follow-up with a work history chronogically

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