Over 40 make overs and CV/Resumes

Monday, June 30th, 2008 - career change, career management, CV Help, CV Writing, how to make a cv, How to Write a CV, tutorial

CV Writing

Voice Makeover - Dana centre event
Creative Commons License photo credit: Gaetan Lee

Frank asks: Although I am a male, I found this article in the Wall Street Journal of interest. It was about makeovers to get a position when one is over a certain age. What did you think of the article? What about resume makeovers? Personal appearance makeovers? What works? What does not?

In Answer:
As with all CV/Resumes, there is no one style that meets all needs. Candidates who are over 40 years of age have certain strengths and liabilities: the resume must be written to highlight the former and diminish the latter.

It is vitally important to remain current in your field; no excuse for not being aware of people and industries in your region. While this is important for all age groups, it is even more important for those who are older:

The following programme should help:

  • Step # 1 is to find a resume writer/coach/strategist with whom the candidate can partner to develop a strategic plan. SWOT analysis is a good way to start this process
  • Step #2 is for the candidate reflect on past accomplishments – the method called S-T-A-R, S-A-R, C-A-R, or P-A-R is widely recommended by career professionals is an excellent approach to identifying what the candidate can offer to future employers or clients. This process should reveal the unique value proposition and/or brand of the candidate – a key piece of the strategic marketing plan
  • Step #3 is a resume and/or networking profile that communicates the information identified in Step #2 above – it needs to be clear, concise, and compelling. I frequently suggest that less is more for seasoned candidates, and especially those who are beginning to search for a new opportunity while full-employed. A networking profile is more conversational, and it doesn’t scream, “Buddy, can you spare me a job…” The 1-page profile can be combined with a traditional reverse chronological resume that will look familiar to decision-makers and HR personnel
  • Step #4 is to target industries and companies who can benefit from what the candidate has to offer
  • Step #5 is to network, and prospect – online and warm networking, research, follow-up, and give to others as you go. Remember that networking is a reciprocal process; your contacts are not tissues to be used and discarded

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