I recently received this question via email:
How do I set up my resume and LinkedIn profile for the NEXT job I want? If I’m a “Manager,” I’m not that interested in jobs with the title “Manager” in them. But how do I ensure people searching for Senior Managers, or Directors find me if my current job title is Manager? Similarly – how do I put together a CV which says I’m ready to be a Senior Manager or Director if the highest rank I’m at the moment is Manager? Thanks. Btw, love your blog. Always give it a quick read. Have recommended many applicants to go back to the drawing board by looking you up.
Herein lies a nearly universal problem I encounter when counseling clients. So many people operate under the misguided notion that a resume/LinkedIn profile must be a dry, factual accounting of tasks they’ve perfumed. Nothing could be further from the truth. Both your resume, and your LinkedIn profile are marketing tools, and you should massage both the language and the messaging to meet your end goal.
For the CV, I always write aspirationally. If you are a manager and you are looking for a senior manager role, then that is the title along with the function. So: Senior Manager, Manufacturing & Engineering. The same would apply to LinkedIn. In the summary, you can create information that highlights your successes and showcases higher level work.
Your resume and your online profiles are marketing collateral. They are not affidavits that are going to be filed with the court, and they should contain much more than just the facts. You do not need to elaborate on the tasks that you perform in your role. What you do need to do is to ensure that you’re promoting yourself by highlighting both your significant accomplishments as well as your goals. No one and I mean NO ONE, is interested in the daily duties that your job entails. This does not make for compelling reading or riveting conversation. What is unique about you is what is interesting. Focus on that and leave the “just the facts” portion off of your resume/LinkedIn.
But Deb, what if they check my background? If it gets to the point that a background screening is necessary, it’s important for you to understand that it is the application and not the resume, against which your background will be verified.
The bottom line
Your resume and LinkedIn profiles belong to you, and not to anyone else. Take the opportunity to exploit them to your best advantage. This will help in your search for your next challenge. Good luck!