Monday, September 29, 2008

Stand-Out Resumes

@PRJobs has linked to a great blog post by Francesco Mugnai featuring twenty great resumes. Among them are severally aesthetically brilliant resumes put forth by graphic designers, artists and communicators. I love coming across creative, out-of-the box resumes. Not only do they stand out in a sea of white printing paper, they can really show off the prospective employees skill in art, design and communication.

Out of shameless curiosity, I decided to google "Sing-A-Long Resume" this morning to see who else took a musical approach, and I was pleased to find that my video is at the top of the search results. When I searched for sung resumes a couple months ago, the results were sparse. I'd love to find a few more musical resumes, but I have only come across one other, a flash video put to the William Tell Overture (I have since lost the link).

While I can't speak as a specialist on getting hired with a great resume, I can remark on the tactics I have seen my peers use. I think there is a fine line between having a stand-out resume and one that is obnoxious. You don't need to have phenomenal design skills to get away with a loud resume, but it can certainly make the difference between one that makes your possible employer go "Wow, we need this guy!" or "Wow, what was he thinking?"

In fact, I think it is extremely hard to get away with an out-of-the-box resume that is not pretentious (and I hope that I have not come across that way myself). The key is, I think, to be realistic with your skills. Be honest with yourself, your abilities and the audience you are looking for. At the same time, be aware of what else is out there and avoid following trends--make sure your great idea showcases your skill sets in some way and isn't just another resume on bright yellow paper. Are you showing off your eye for design? Your knowledge of viral videos? Writing skills?

I would like to see more communication grads find unique ways to show off their talents, but I am not a hiring manager. Actually, I would love to hear what someone in HR thinks about stand-out resumes. What are your thoughts?

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