Your resume highlights your relevant work experience, it showcases your skills and areas of expertise. It lists your education, awards, and neat, descriptive bullet points under each job you held. It may include data and be primed to pass an ATS. Ultimately, it’s a bright, bold, shining beacon that you’re using to get the attention of a hiring manager so that you can snag an interview and get the job. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of advice when it comes to this: Use powerful verbs, keep it one page, get creative, don’t be too creative.
But, at the end of the day, your resume probably looks and sounds a lot like the next guy’s, which is why when we came across this honest resume, we were floored. Mark Bazer, creator of The Interview Show, had this to say about the application from Theodore S. Rice that landed on his desk: “Its honesty and directness were a breath of fresh air. In other words, it gets it right.”
From afar, it looks like your average resume, with the candidate’s name and contact information at the top. But once you start reading, you know this is way different than any run-of-the-mill version. For example, one bullet point reads, “Held multiple sales positions doing more or less the same thing at incrementally larger rates of pay while accruing nearly $2,000 in retirement account and inexplicably always signing up for vision insurance.” Another says, “Develop proprietary method for eating food at desk while staring off into the distance (2 meals a day).” My personal favorite? The summary of what Rice did as an Assistant to the Sales Director at Kassakian Bros: “Don’t remember, as was a long time ago during period of heavy marijuana usage.”
Rice, who is unarguably hilarious based on this read, is, we learn, in sales and looking for his next role. We also learn, through the first job heading, that he’s a father who sends “one late-night email to his boss” per week and complains about his job.
Although parts are kind of depressing—“planned, experienced and never fully mentally returned from paternity leaves”—it is, as the title of the LinkedIn Pulse article states, honest. How many of us have spent time quantifying bullets points to make them sound more impressive, wishing we could just drop the act and be honest? Yes, we’ve accomplished a lot and do have brag-worthy achievements, but that doesn’t mean every workday’s filled with nonstop success stories.
Is this move bold enough to get him through the hiring manager’s door or is it too bold?
It’s hard to say. Bazer liked it (though he doesn’t really indicate if Rice is a candidate he intends to move forward with), but it obviously isn’t a move we’re enthusiastically recommending. I’d like to think there’s a middle ground between exaggerating your skills and expertise and stating that at Company X, one of your responsibilities involved figuring out the fastest route to the nearest Chipotle.
But, that doesn’t mean it’s not fun to read through. It’s hard to imagine that any professional can get through the whole resume without finding a line that hits home. Check it out here.
Photo of woman working on resume courtesy of Sam Edwards/Getty Images.
Stacey Lastoe is the Senior Editor/Writer of The Muse. She started writing short stories in the second grade and is immensely grateful to have the opportunity to write and edit professionally. Her work has appeared in YouBeauty, Refinery29, A Practical Wedding, Runner's World online, and The Billfold among other publications. She enjoys running and eating in equal measure and lives with her husband and dog in Brooklyn. All three of them are avid New York Mets fans. Say hello on @stacespeaks.More from this Author