Recently, I have noticed the way my clients utilize their executive resumes has evolved. It seems that today’s executive resume is being shared to open doors for multiple opportunities that extend far beyond the job search.
Here are just a few examples:
Post Company Acquisitions
CxOs can share their executive resumes with transitional teams that oversee their company post-acquisition. These transition teams evaluate the value points and contributions of each team member, and professionally designed resumes enhance professional status while fluidly communicating metric-driven accomplishments. Furthermore, since executive resumes are written with the executive’s preferences in mind, it strengthens their ability to retain their position post-acquisition if they choose to do so, but also enhances their opportunities for promotions to higher roles.
C-level executives can use their executive resume as an attachment within their submissions for advanced degrees and certifications. This has been met with great enthusiasm by organizations and schools, and in many cases, has tipped the scales in favor of our clients for programs known to be difficult to get into. We have even heard of credits being offered towards advanced degrees due to our clients’ ability to communicate their subject matter expertise.
An executive resume can stimulate conversations for new opportunities within your network. These opportunities span across private equity and venture capital investment, operating partners, investment partners, brokers or potential board members.
A strong trend in executive resumes today is to create taglines and keyword categories at the top of your resume. At a cursory glance, this helps your reader understand the basic framework of your title, industry, “superpower,” profits and losses and geographical reach. Add to that any areas of expertise on the periphery such as board and advisory roles, major media commentaries or unique talents (turnarounds/IPOs, etc.) and you have a powerful document that helps your network make good determinations and connections on your behalf.
Thought Leadership/Keynote Speaking
Use your resume to demonstrate your expertise for inclusion in industry-related articles across major media outlets. You can also use it for submissions to speaking engagements and round tables at associations, trade shows and platforms, including TED Talks.
Executive Recruiter Consideration
C-suite leaders can use their properly positioned executive resume to update their recruiter contacts. If you have ever been pitched roles that are below your skill level, you know how hard it can be to correct perceptions of yourself—but it can be done! We are always helping our clients step up to higher roles, and one of the methods we teach is simply writing to the position you want next. This has a powerful effect on your recruiter network, as you’ll now have the right network out there keeping their eyes and ears open for you. Nice!
Creating a resume in a hurry because someone asked you for it out of the blue is never ideal, because resume writing is a thoughtful process that deserves not to be rushed but developed carefully. Developing an executive resume is not unlike a marketing plan: You begin at the end (your goal in mind—your ideal situation), work backward and build from there. It’s the secret to a good resume that you can tweak later to fit whatever evolves for you.
We call these “career portfolio” resumes, and they are designed to support your ongoing thought leadership and your progressing career—not just when you are in a corporate transition. Many executives today are opting for this nuanced format and design as it can be more powerfully utilized across the aforementioned opportunities. This same strategy can be structured to a LinkedIn profile or even an executive biography—to open more doors and stimulate more opportunities.
I hope this information gives you some ideas on how you can use your executive resume to optimize your career.
Mary Elizabeth Bradford, 26 July 2019