Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Proper Length For a Resume Is?



I have a few ideas regarding resumes. I might even know a few things that could be useful to a resume owner who has questions.

This morning, I’m digging out from a deep avalanche that I created by being out of the office last week on a family vacation.  As I fly through hundreds of emails in my Inbox and try to check thousands of emails in my Junk Mail to be sure that they’re actually junk, the topic of emails, resumes and communication in general is at the forefront of my mind this morning.

I just opened a security resume that belongs to someone I’ve spoken to recently. I know that this individual is highly accomplished and I know that he is very articulate.  Had we not spoken before I just opened his 9 page resume, in the midst of all the catch-up work I have to do today, I seriously doubt that I would have invested the time, energy and attention it will take to evaluate a 9 page resume for the first time.  Call it a self-defense mechanism that a data-overwhelmed business person puts in place to allow himself or herself to get through the daily volume of calls, emails, InMails and text messages they receive.

What is the right length for a resume?  If you search the Internet for answers, you’ll find thousands of opinions and the truth is that there isn't a resume rule that governs the universe of resume opinions.  Consider the audience who will receive and consume your resume when you decide how long your resume should be and whose opinions you should consider on the topic.

From the vantage point of someone who has reviewed resumes for over 23 years and from someone whose security resume writing clients are seeing doors opened with their new resumes, I strongly suggest that you keep your resume to 2-3 pages.  If resume writing isn't your thing, don't be afraid to seek help.

A well-written, logically presented resume that is 2-3 pages in length can be easily consumed by a busy data overwhelmed executive.  Generally speaking, a resume that exceeds 3 pages will generally contain too much information for a data overwhelmed busy executive who possesses a short attention span and it won't be read.



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