Some people believe that resume writing should only occur as you´re preparing to find a new job. Yet many others know that having a resume on hand at all times is the way to go. If you´ve been wondering about that, here´s the first part of a Q & A with author Robbie Miller Kaplan, whose books include How to Say It In Your Job Search (Prentice Hall Press, 2002) and How to Say It When You Don’t Know What to Say (Prentice Hall Press, 2004).
Leslie: If I´m not in the market for a job, do I need a resume?
Robbie: Resumes play an important role whether seeking a job or building a career. Resumes work best when they detail how qualifications match positions of interest. Use your resume when planning your next career move. Do your research on key job requirements and then prepare your resume to assess your credentials. If you find yourself lacking skills, training, certifications, or key experience, create a career plan that details how you can acquire the necessary requirements. Continually update your resume as you build credentials and keep in touch with hiring managers and individuals in those positions to review your resume and provide direction. It´s always best to position yourself for the next opportunity and your resume in an effective tool to guide your progress.
Leslie: Are there specific ways that a resume can help me progress in my career?
Robbie: As we immerse ourselves in job responsibilities, it´s easy to forget completed projects and accomplishments. Resumes are excellent vehicles for chronicling descriptive statements of ongoing and completed projects, problems solved, and actual achievements. Let your resume communicate your unique talents and contributions. Use them for annual performance reviews, in-house promotional opportunities, board appointments, professional and community leadership opportunities, and bios.
Leslie: What role do interview strategies play in career building?
Robbie: Oral communication skills are highly prized in the workplace and play a vital role in your career. When planning for the interview process, savvy professionals prepare potential questions and practice answers. You can use these same interview strategies to enhance your oral communication skills and better participate in organizational conversations and meetings. Identify workplace scenarios and use the same research techniques to locate information. Devise statements and role-play responses that will articulate your ideas, knowledge, and contributions.