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Friday, March 24, 2006
Positive Resume Comments
I always ask clients if they have been using their old resume and how it’s working for them in the job search. This gives me a better picture of their efforts to date and usually leads them to telling me more in detail about their career targets. One of the most common comments I receive is “I’ve gotten a lot of positive comments but no interviews.”

Okay, people, allow me to clue you in on a little secret. Positive comments on a resume are generally a nice way for the hiring manager to say the resume doesn’t excite him. I would rather have a resume inspire enthusiasm and further discussion instead of generating “positive comments”. Many people also say they have shown the resume to friends and relatives and they have had nice things to say about it. Unless the friend or relative is actually in a position to hire you, it does not matter what he/she has to say about the resume.

My team and I perform free resume reviews every day. We strive to provide comments in our resume reviews that are accurate, helpful, and to-the-point. Many of our comments are not positive but they are always specific. We don’t review resumes to make the job seeker feel good. We review them for potential effectiveness in the job search.

Occasionally, we will have someone who has sent his resume to us for a free resume review get his feathers ruffled because we didn’t laud it with positive comments but rather gave him specific guidance on what needed to be improved. That’s understandable; the resume represents the job seeker and criticism of the resume feels like criticism of the job seeker. It’s an emotional response. Criticism of a marketing document, though, is not criticism of what is being marketed. We do not review a job seeker’s career potential or career value. We review how effectively and aggressively that value is being marketed via the resume.

In writing, marketing, and pretty much any profession, a hallmark of a true professional is if he can hear criticism of his work, view it objectively, and take action to improve based on recommendations. If you are your own harshest critic, all other input will seem less threatening. Clients who send us their resumes for a free resume review aren’t professional career marketers. They only have to conduct a job search every few years so they don’t have much practice in writing resumes. On the other hand, we write resumes every day and we know what works and what doesn’t work. We offer our experience and knowledge free in the form of free resume reviews. We offer it but we can’t make the job seeker take it. It is up to the job seeker to consider the suggestions we make and decide on a course of action.

Recipients of our free resume reviews get specific comment on various aspects of their resumes including comments on content, mechanics, design/format, strategy, and effectiveness. We could be like other services and give vague comments alluding to insignificant issues, but that would be a disservice to the job seekers who need sound advice and direction about their resumes. Our resume reviews are like the resumes we develop – effective, aggressive, and pointed. We are not engaged in handing out positive comments in our free resume reviews for the sake of making people feel good. We are here to help.

November 2005 / December 2005 / January 2006 / February 2006 / March 2006 /


We specialize in working with professionals in the high tech, engineering, and manufacturing industries to organize, direct, and accomplish their career goals. Our knowledge of technology and our expertise in these rapidly changing industries set us apart from all other career services firms and provides outstanding value to our clients. See how we can help your Career by reading our Blog.
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