Are you as fierce as Elle Woods?

This week I receive a resume that would make Elle proud. It was on pink paper…yes, that’s right. Now it wasn’t scented, and it did stand out, but the “powers that be” did not take it seriously despite the candidate having a credible career history and notable skills.

In today’s job market, there is a lot of noise. It is important to stand out, but in a positive way. This is where you need to think outside the box, with the “box” being the 8-1/2” x 11” page of your resume.

· LinkedIn provides a great opportunity to highlight accomplishments, use your voice in your industry by sharing content, and get noticed by employers and headhunters alike. It is not the only option though.

· GIT is a valuable resource for engineers.

· And you won’t go wrong with your own, personal website. It doesn’t need to be a blog or a portfolio if your career doesn’t lend itself to that sort of representation. It can be as simple as a landing page that displays your career accomplishments in a creative, visual manner with photos, graphs or charts. You can also include direct quotes from references. Bonus if they speak directly to one of the specific accomplishments you have highlighted. Include industry facts as well if you can tie them to your specific accomplishments. “During the real estate crash of 2008, I led the leasing team on XYZ deal for 1.2 million feet of commercial space in the third quarter.”

Now you may be wondering what to leave on your resume if you are creating all of this digital collateral to document your career. Good question. Do not list tasks that are to be expected of a person with your job title. If you are a receptionist, do not list that you answer the phones. That is assumed because THAT is your job. You may have coordinated firmwide business lunches for 120+ attorneys on a daily basis. THAT is an accomplishment. When you list an item on your resume, ask yourself why the reader should care about it. Why does it matter?

So while Elle Woods is a role model in so many ways, please think before “going pink” in your job hunt. If you have any doubt about your approach or just want a second pair of eyes to give your resume or website a once over, feel free to reach out. I’m always happy to help.

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