If you are jumping in to my resume writing philosophy midstream, you should go back and read the previous articles to get caught up to speed.
This article isn’t about how to gamble with your chances of getting interviews with risky resume writing strategies like my previous two articles. This article is about how you are getting eliminated instantly by inserting a simple line into your cover letters, resumes and introduction emails.
The line goes something like this: “With Over 20 years of experience…”
- Over 80% of the jobs being advertised are asking for 3-8 years of experience
- Selling your accumulated experience is advice for people with 3-8 years of experience – NOT mature job seekers.
- Being over-qualified for a job gets you eliminated as quickly as being under-qualified for a job.
- If a job asks for 5 years’ experience and the first words a hiring manager reads are “over 15 years of experience…” you are instantly eliminated.
If that’s not enough to make you stop saying it, writing it and thinking it, here is the image you conjure up when you use this type of “sales” pitch.
- You’re old
- You’re going to be hard to manage and you will have a better way to do everything.
- You won’t follow existing policy and procedure
- You’re trying to get hired at a lower level of employment with the intention of taking “my” (the managers) job.
- This is a temporary job until something better comes along.
- You’re desperate!
- You won’t fit in.
By including a statement that summarizes all of your accumulated experience on your resume, cover letter, introduction email or in an interview if your experience is more than is required you are putting yourself 100% at risk of being eliminated.
Stop writing it, saying and thinking it. Stop, right now! It’s similar to someone telling you not to drink poison. You know it will kill you if you drink it, but you drink it anyway. It is resume writing suicide!
How do I stop?
Here is the best way I can tell you to re-frame your experience. You don’t have 20 years of experience; you have 5 years of experience 4 times over.
Your resume should target the related experience – first.
When you interview, it is your job to keep the hiring manager focused and keep bringing them back to the experience you want to highlight. Resist the urge to over compensate and talk about your 20 years of experience and how you can do it all. Talk in terms of, “I learned so much in the 3 years I spent on this project doing exactly what you are hiring for.”
People are trying to help, but in most cases their efforts are actually hurting your chances, keeping you unemployed. Mature job seekers need to stick together. Here is a very cool article from Simon Sinek on why we need each other.
His book, Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action will also inspire you to change the way you think about yourself and your job search. It’s one of my favorites.
Don’t forget you can sign up for my FREE eBook and start changing the way you approach resume writing.
“The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world… usually do.” Apple Commercial from 1997…