How to Demonstrate Achievements in Your Resume
Often it is going to be better to “show” than to flat out “tell” a potential employer the best details about yourself. For instance, if you want them to understand that you have leadership skills you could just create a section in your document called “skills” and put a bullet point with the word “leadership” next to it. Is that really convincing to the reader? No, because you can just as easily write “telepathy” or “good dresser” too. In reality, the best way to ensure that the reader of a resume understands your abilities or achievements is to “demonstrate” them.
Okay, you think, how do I do that? It has to start with a clear understanding of your goals in terms of the resume and the job at hand. For instance, what job are you applying for? What sort of accomplishments would make you the strongest candidate for this sort of work? Where do you have them in your resume or work history?
Once you understand your goals, the achievements that make you stand out, and how to “tag” them in your resume, you can begin to craft a very effective document. Here’s a good illustration of how to do this:
You find a job listing for someone to serve as a program director in a community center. This means that you will be creating programs for all different ages, working with staff to implement the programs, and then developing ways of tracking success. How can you then use the achievements that you have in your past jobs or experiences in this line of work? Thinking about the situation in this manner is going to help you to clarify which of the accomplishments or achievements that you have will be a good match to the particular job.
Then you can begin to create an itemized list of skills that demonstrates these things without making them patently obvious. So, the program director job would need you to be able to create programs, and you have won a community award for creating children’s programs at the local library; by all means, be sure to list this in your resume in a prominent manner and also identify this in the cover letter.
This is a final tip for demonstrating achievements – Be sure that you mention in your cover letter that you intend to show your competency or appropriateness for the job, reference the most substantial items, and be sure you have references that are well suited for the work you hope to get.