5 Point Executive Resume Checklist

5 Point Executive Resume Checklist
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By: Annette Richmond

Early in your career a resume that shows a few years of work experience and a degree in your field may be adequate. As you move up the corporate ladder you need more. Much more.

The resume that generated interviews when you first started, won’t get you noticed once you’ve reached the executive level, or are targeting those roles. At that point, employers want to know what you bring to the table.

Here is a 5-point checklist for developing a compelling, interview-generating, executive resume.

#1 Strong Skills

Your strongest skills should be easy to find on your resume. Your resume shouldn’t be “stuffed” with keywords. However, you need to make it easy for recruiters and hiring managers to see critical skills as they scan your resume. Also, turn the spotlight on skills you want to use in your next position.

#2 Value Offered

Neither recruiters nor employers will be impressed with a long boring list of duties and responsibilities. They want to know how you can solve their problems. It’s essential to demonstrate the positive impact you’ve had on your employer(s) and to quantify your results with numbers ($$, %, etc.) whenever possible.

#3 Leadership

When you’re trying to move up the ladder you need to convey leadership as well as achievements. Evidence of leadership is more than managing a team. You need to demonstrate this in terms of guidance and direction.

#4 No Distractions

Don’t waste valuable resume real estate on hobbies, community service, and/or side jobs that are not relevant to your target position. No one cares if you love salsa dancing or gardening. Exceptions are those that relate to or are relevant to your job. For example, playing golf if you conduct sales meetings on the golf course.

#5 Modern Format

While content is “King” that content needs to be packaged in a fresh, modern format if you want to get noticed. A 10-year-old resume that you’ve added to or a resume that looks like your spouse typed it for you won’t cut it. If you don’t want to hire a professional at least use a resume writing book like Resumes For Dummies for guidance.

When you’re first starting out you may get away with a resume that shows some work experience and a degree. However, once you’ve reached the executive level, or are pursuing those roles, you need to demonstrate value.

A compelling, results-driven, resume presented in an engaging, easy-to-read format will help you edge out your competition.


Annette Richmond is a 3X Certified Executive Resume Writer, LinkedIn Profile Writer, former recruiter, former journalist, and owner of career intelligence Resume Writing & Career Services. Annette has been featured on Monster, Forbes, Chicago Tribune, Huffington Post, and Business Insider. Her work appears in Resumes For Dummies.

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