Is It All About What You Want Or What You Can Offer?

By: Jessica Holbrook Hernandez

Is It All About What You Want Or What You Can Offer?

Today's job market demands more from job seekers. You can't get by on the same sloppy resume that would have gotten your foot in the door two or three years ago. In fact, the styles/trends/content have changed dramatically in the past year alone. So why are you still using an objective?

Objectives do one thing and one thing only-they tell the employer what it is that you want. In this job market, employers know what you want-you want a job. And you want it with them - or you wouldn't be applying and sending in your resume. So why use prime real estate on your resume to state the obvious? Seems like a waste of space when you can be using that same space to show the employer what you can offer them-something that no one else can.

Instead, opt for a personal branding statement and a compelling career summary chock-full of industry specific keywords. When a hiring manager takes that first glance at your resume, he or she should be drawn to your branding statement-which should include the job title or target you're pursuing and a brief one-liner about what you bring to the table that no one else does. It's called your unique promise of value. It means you offer something that no one else does-and it should be the first thing the potential employer reads about you.

And immediately after he has read your personal branding statement, he should be WOWED by your compelling career summary. That reinforces your unique talents, vision, and passion for what you do. Think of it as a one-two punch. POW! Personal Branding Statement! POW! Compelling Career Summary! Now you've got his attention!

Spell out for the employer why you're the perfect fit for the position and what benefits you offer if they hire you. For example: you've won awards, increased sales, decreased costs. What have you done in your job history that you are proud of and that is applicable to the position to which you are applying?

They key is to create a document that is unique to you and customized to the opportunity you want. Yes, this means you have to tweak your resume every time you send it out to ensure that it is tailored to the opportunity you want-but better to invest the time now than to still be searching for a job six months from now.

For more great resources, tips, or articles on resume writing, visit Great Resumes Fast. To receive a free resume analysis, submit your resume to