We’ve talked before about how you should focus the bullet points on your resume on your accomplishments rather than your job responsibilities.
But in a recent interview with The New York Times, Lazlo Bock (a.k.a., the guy in charge of all hiring at Google), took this advice once step further, explaining that the real key to making those bullet points work in your favor is to also to give those accomplishments context and explain exactly how you achieved them.
The key...is to frame your strengths as: ‘I accomplished X, relative to Y, by doing Z.’ Most people would write a resume like this: ‘Wrote editorials for The New York Times.’ Better would be to say: ‘Had 50 op-eds published compared to average of 6 by most op-ed [writers] as a result of providing deep insight into the following area for three years.’ Most people don’t put the right content on their resumes.
Why does this work so well? First of all, the hiring managers reading your resume aren’t always going to be familiar with the industries or companies you’ve worked for, so by giving them context of how you did compared to others or compared to the average, you demonstrate how much you really rock. Second, by explaining what led to that success, you give them a sense of what skills you’d be bringing to the table at their company.
There’s only so much space on your resume, and using a structure like this in your bullet points really packs a punch of impressive information into a small space. Take a look at your resume today, and see if your bullet points could use an upgrade.
Erin Greenawald is a freelance writer, editor, and content strategist who is passionate about elevating the standard of writing on the web. Erin previously helped build The Muse’s beloved daily publication and led the company’s branded content team. If you’re an individual or company looking for help making your content better—or you just want to go out to tea—get in touch at eringreenawald.com.More from this Author