The Resume Handbook: How to Write Outstanding Resumes and Cover Letters for Every Situation

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Win an interview! Showcase your polished skills and professional talents in your resume and cover letter using Arthur D. Rosenberg and David Hizer's classic, The Resume Handbook, 4th Edition, which has launched hundreds of thousands into career success. Completely revised and updated, this all-new fourth edition teaches you how to:
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The Resume Handbook: How to Write Outstanding Resumes and Cover Letters for Every Situation

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Overview

Win an interview! Showcase your polished skills and professional talents in your resume and cover letter using Arthur D. Rosenberg and David Hizer's classic, The Resume Handbook, 4th Edition, which has launched hundreds of thousands into career success. Completely revised and updated, this all-new fourth edition teaches you how to:
*Stay away from dull writing
*Organize all your information in a clean and easy-to-follow layout
*Include the essentials and avoid excess information
*Use the best action words
*Post online and garner immediate results

The Resume Handbook, 4th Edition shows you exactly how to write the resume and cover letter that get the immediate attention of recruiters and employers. Featuring thirty-two of the best resumes ever written and filled with no-nonsense advice, this outstanding guide gives you the edge you need in a competitive marketplace. Don't start your job search without it!

Arthur D. Rosenberg is a New York- and New Jersey-based consultant specializing in business analysis, project management, user-friendly documentation, corporate communications, and training. He gives career-related seminars to professional and minority groups. He resides in New York City.

David Hizer was a Detroit-based executive search consultant who dedicated his efforts to matching talented executives with his clients' organizations.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781580628549
  • Publisher: Adams Media Corporation
  • Publication date: 8/28/2003
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 4
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 6.24 (w) x 9.24 (h) x 0.53 (d)

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER TWO:THE BASIC PRINCIPLES OF RESUME WRITING

Writing a successful resume is an art, with certain basic principles that should be kept in mind. The following suggestions have been formulated through long years of exposure to all sorts of resumes. Major deviations from these "rules" are at your own creative-and professional-risk.
Brief is better! See if you can fit it all on a single page (especially recent graduates and those early in their careers), but don't exceed two pages. Remember, few executives enjoy the task of reading piles of resumes, let alone the thick, voluminous monsters that get mailed out each day. A potential exception to this rule is the consultant's resume, which may need to list one's technical skills, projects, and clients comprehensively. (See resume example 31 in Chapter Four.)
Format: Your name (in bold type or in capital letters), address, and both home and work telephone numbers belong on top. Next come your objectives and summary of qualifications, accomplishments, employment history, education, and related activities and affiliations. Select the resume from "the Thirty-one Best Resumes We've Ever Seen" that most closely meets your needs and suits your style, and use it as a model, or combine elements from several of these resume samples.
Education may precede employment history in certain cases, especially if a recent graduate or technical degree is more closely related to the desired position than your employment history. Recent graduates, with little or no work experience, have little choice. Optional categories: These may include career objectives, summary of qualifications, and such personal details as date of birth, marital status, military record, and health. Let's take a separate look at each of these:
Career Objectives: This can be an excellent topic to include if you happen to possess a clear idea of what they are. But general or vague objectives are best omitted. Remember, your objectives can be honed specifically to the job for which you are applying in your cover letter, which we'll address a little later.
Your career objectives must be worded with precision if they are to be included in your resume. They should be clearly stated and consistent with your accomplishments and demonstrated sills, as documented on your resume. Bear in mind the difference between career and job objectives. A career objective is just that…a long range-plan that may or may not relate directly to the job for which you are applying. A job objective, on the other hand, is oriented quite specifically to the opening you wish to fill. We recommend using the term "objective" by itself, which would be appropriate for most situations.
Summary of Qualifications: A detailed resume that includes a wealth of professional experience can employ this effectively. The summary may be inserted in addition to, or instead of, a statement of objectives; or the two can be combined ("qualifications and objectives"). At its best, a summary will entice the reader to read further; at its worst, it has the opposite effect. A summary is most helpful if the applicant has had an extremely diversified background, including (for instance) teaching and industry (see "The Thirty-one Best"), or if the resume extends beyond a single page. An effective and well-written summary attracts the reader's eye, brings the essence of your resume into focus, and compels the reader to move on to the main details.
Personal Data: If your personal details are "Mom-and-apple pie" and straight as the proverbial arrow, they may lend an air of respectability to your image. However, any nonessential information that you offer is more likely to work against you. Let's face it, prejudices do exist (for example) toward single women, unmarried men over a certain age, and older job-seekers-and why should anyone advertise that they're divorced? Your date of birth may only serve to persuade potential employers that you are too young or too old for a given job before they've even met you. Your military record may be worth mentioning if it includes some sort of relevant job training or experience (technical, organizational; see Abel Baker's resume in "The Thirty-one Best"). And finally, who on earth would admit in writing to poor physical (or mental) health? Omit any reference to health.

Also leave out: *Reasons for having left a job-they won't enhance your image, and you may create a negative impression. *Former (or desired) salary-you need to know as much as possible about the job in order to avoid asking for too little or too much. Don't risk putting yourself out of the running before you've even begun. *Hobbies and memberships in social, fraternal, or religious organizations-potential employers don't need this information, and you never know what may turn them off. *Reasons for not having served in the military. *Any potentially negative information about you (unless avoidable), such as prison terms, lost lawsuits, and handicaps that may affect your job performance. *The label "Resume" or "Vitae"-if the briefest glance does not clearly identify your resume as such, the label will not help. *The banal "References available on request"; this is taken for granted.

Visual impact: Use the same type style throughout your resume, and use bold, italics, or all caps for headings and emphasis (as discussed in Chapter Six). Do not send out photocopies; spend a few dollars to have your resume professionally printed or use a high-quality laser printer…the difference is well worth the cost. Always print your resume on quality paper. As clothes make the woman or man, cheap-looking paper will detract from your resume. Stick with white, off-white, or light shades of beige or gray. Make sure the resume is letter-perfect. Errors, typos, stains, abbreviations (etc., e.g., i.e.), technical jargon, and hip or buzz words are strictly taboo. Get your final draft critiqued and proofread by someone reliable.
Ensure integrity: Poorly written resumes typically lack internal integrity; yours should be consistent. Your job or career objective (if you use one) will be supported by accomplishments you list. If you are interested in a senior position with an advertising firm, then you should emphasize your accomplishments in management, business development, and in creative programs you've developed. If you include a "Summary of Qualifications" section, it must represent in brief the rest of your resume. If not, you will confuse the reader. The bottom line here is that your resume provides separate-but interrelated-facts.
Employment history: When writing a chronological resume, strike a balance between job content and accomplishments; the later should be emphasized (as we'll explain in the next chapter). List your current position first, working back chronologically. De-emphasize the jobs you held further back in time. Avoid verifiable exaggerations that may someday constitute grounds for dismissal, but do use action verbs and phrases to best present he facts to your advantage (see Chapter Three).

Here's an example of a balanced job history:

1989-present
Flinthall Electronics, Dover, Ohio. Manager of product testing. Supervise testing group consisting of seven research engineers. Group's mission was to create methods to test performance, safety, and durability characteristics of projected products. While heading up this group:
?Received aware of excellence for innovations in testing by American Society of Research Engineers-1990.
?Increased group efficiency as measured by time and quantity parameters by 35%.
?Developed three patented testing procedures during last four years.

In the above example, the first paragraph clarifies the job's content-what was supposed to be done. This introduction sets up and brings clarity to the accomplishments.

Organizations of which you are a member: You may safely list the ones that show achievement or professional standing, such as the National Association of Certified Public Accountants, or the Tool & Diemakers's Guild. You can also include your leadership abilities as an officer or an official in a strictly non-controversial association, like the PTA or Junior Achievement. But stay away from listing political, religious, and potentially controversial groups because they simply don't belong on resumes. Awards: Be sure to list awards that relate to the kind of you're seeking, like Pulitzer Prizes, Oscars, or honorary doctorates. Leave out references to having won the league bowling or karate championship. While these achievements may bolster your ego, they can create uncertain images in the mind of an interviewer. In addition, they have nothing to do with the task at hand-winning an interview.

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Table of Contents

Introduction
Chapter One: Looking for a New Job
Chapter Two: The Basic Principles of Resume Writing
Chapter Three: Stating Your Accomplishments
Chapter Four: The Thirty-one Best Resumes We've Ever Seen
Chapter Five: The Five Worst Resumes We've Ever Seen
Chapter Six: Resume Design and Layout
Chapter Seven: Cover Letters
Chapter Eight: Personal Sales Letters
Chapter Nine: A Few Thoughts on Networking
Chapter Ten: The Other 50 Perfect
Afterword
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 26 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 9, 2005

    Awsome Reference Tool

    Must have reference to write/(re-write) your resume! My 'before' resume was awful, but I had no idea how to fix it. I wanted to hire someone to re-write it, but could not afford it. I checked out a dozen resume books from the library and narrowed it down to 2. The Resume Handbook and one other. I thought the book with the suggested sentences, worksheets, etc. would be the most helpful, but again it wasn't. Tips used in The Resume Handbook and the List of action verbs were incredible and proved invaluable in getting my resume rewritten. I love my new resume and have had unbelievable success with it! This is a must have if you want to re-write your resume.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2007

    A great way to start your job search

    An excellent resource with all the tools you will need to get started on your job search. It is a must read primer those without a resume, first-time job seekers, or those who have been out of the market for a while.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 28, 2006

    What a difference

    I rewrote my resume after reading this book, and it's hardly the same resume. The chapters in the book are concise and to the point, and there are lots of sample resumes to learn from. I realized before I even set to work rewriting my resume that I had seriously understated my achievements, and by adding what the authors call 'accomplishment statements,' I developed a resume that I feel proud of and want potential employers to read.

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