Monday, May 24, 2010

A winning resume for gunning a dream job………..

A winning resume for gunning a dream job………..

Image credit : Shyam's Imagination Library 

Added on 8th May 2017

Of late, I have noticed a welcome trend on LinkedIn, that, HR professional are coming out liberally with their views about writing resumes, about preparing and performing in the interviews. 

Previously, and almost grievously, It was not considered proper to reveal the secrets of the interviewing process. Candidates were not considered worthy of knowing it and it was considered important to retain the surprise element in the interview. The questions asked were mostly unethical or irrelevant and certainly not related with the domain, or the company work culture.

The stress was more on displaying their knowledge, rather than testing the candidates. Whenever you had a new recruit for the HR, you had to spend a long time making him unlearn things considered uncultured in the recruitment process. It was difficult  to make them give up draconian  habit of  being harsh and dominating during the interview. The culture of cooperation and  collaboration was more difficult in HR people than people from other domains.

However,  I am glad that, everything is past now. The new generation coming from the B-
Schools is very professional in both planning and conduct of interviews. Many large orgnisations including Google now send a mail to the prospective candidates about the process of the interview, the members of the panel and their domain expertise. The number of rounds, and the type of questions the candidates can expect.

This puts the candidates at total ease and makes him articulate his feelings in an uninhibited way.

It is a good Transformation, I welcome it. 

Now about the Resume....

To put it simply, it is the first page whether it is the cover letter or an abstract or an executive summary, that makes the junior executive in HR, (who is the first contact for the resume) to decide whether to pass on the application for the next round of evaluation or trash it.

Your job is to convince him enough to forward your application for the next stage in just 30 seconds at the most.

I have a very simple solution for it.

Keep the job ad or notification with you when you are applying for the job.

Write down the job requirements one by one on the right side of the cover letter. Opposite each requirement, write the related attribute you have, whether it is qualification, experience, achievements, leadership qualities, crisis management. Keep it short , specific and objective driven. Even if there is 80% match between the JD and your attributes, you have good chances of getting an interview call. 

Don't Apply, if it is less than that.

The executive will instantaneously get an idea about your suitability for the job.

He will either be convinced or confused enough to not trash it. You are shortlisted. You have already overtaken some people with equal or even better attributes. More time is devoted to resume during the second evaluation.

A wining resume is the best weapon you can have in your arsenal for a successful job search.

How to craft a winning resume?

There are some extraordinary articles written by experts on this subject. This article presumes that the readers have read and are aware of the basics. This article goes beyond the basics and generics and focuses on the specifics related to job search in Asia region. If you are in west, some of the things mentioned may not be applicable.

The difference between West and Asia is, where as in west, it is recession ridden business environment where survival and staying out of the firing line is the job priority, where as in Asia which has two of the fastest growing economies, India, & China, and one of the biggest Japan The resume and job application should aim at objectives beyond getting a job.  It should make a statement that you are ideal case to be counted for succession management. It should also give an impression that you are fast in changing gears, and cope with the Positive Change Management Strategies. Positive change I have to stress, because, post recession, it has acquired a new meaning. It relates to cost cutting, managing with less resources, and all the negatives you can think off. In Asia it means growth management as has been shown by Japan, Korea, and now India & China. Indian Management style and Indian Leadership are now  much discussed topics in leading B Schools. In such a circumstance,

How can a resume, structured by the western experts, for western job, be applicable for Asia????  No, it can never be, it should be in tune with the Asian culture of recruitment and employee engagement.

There is nothing called standard resume which can be used for all job requirement. Each job has a very specific requirement, like  technical knowledge, work culture, language, loyalty metrics, behavior pattern, leadership qualities, Corporate Social Responsibilities. You need to factor your resume according to these requirements for each job. You need to craft a separate resume for each job. The resume should be short not more than two to three pages. If you need to give details of the projects handled create separate files and attach them. You can also attach a power point presentation detailing how you could impact their bottom lines positively. The advantage of this is that, during interview the discussions will center around these documents and you can confidently answer questions and   score points.

Crafting an honest and authentic resume is good, but remember the first contact for your resume is a junior executive in HR, who doesn't understand the technical vocabulary. But, he will understand, if you mention, how your attributes helped in increasing the bottom lines of the organization. Or how you managed in crisis, or when, the resources, or the machine output were less than optimum. Your ability to manage with less will impress even a junior executive at HR and make him shortlist your resume and move it forward.

An attached power point presentation, that tells all, you want to convey, will be an added asset and an attention grabbing tool at the first contact level. An executive will always prefer viewing a few slides and forming an opinion than going through the lengthy text. You can view my profile in power point presentation HERE

How to go about it?

You have to prepare a master resume (This doesn’t go to the employer.)Make it as expansive and detailed as possible. It may go up to ten, twelve, or more pages. This is ware house and from here you can draw your inputs craft customized resumes for each job.

Please keep all your appointment orders, appreciation letters, and testimonials ready. Please also jot down all details about your deliveries at various levels in different companies.

Please note your failures and how you recovered from them, learned from them, made dramatic come backs and delivered extraordinarily. Mentioning a few failures in the early part of your career make your successes in the later part of the career look more credible.

Make a hierarchical chart describing growth and the contributing factors for it. Write honest reasons for staying or not staying longer with company. Try to justify your stagnation periods.

Similarly make a monetary chart underlining growth and reasons. If you have made lateral shifts in the career, please be ready with the justifications and reasons.

If there are terminations in service, try to find honest reasons and justifications. Employers take terminations more seriously in Asia than in west.

Please gather details about community activities, social service and CSR work during your studies or employment.

Language and demographics:  It helps to know more languages as the interactions with the workers are generally in the native local language. Knowledge about demographics gives you inkling about their behavior patterns and helps you to handle workers better. And also gives the prospective employer the confidence that you would be able to handle the manpower diligently and intelligently.

Mention how you managed emotional conflicts among your team members, or with your immediate manager. If you are fresh out of the college, you can mention how you tackled crisis situation with your colleagues or the teaching staff.

Next you should mention personal & family details, your education, your achievements, and accomplishments in sports, cultural,& social activities.

Now that your master resume is ready, you need to research and analyze each of your prospective employers. Whether it s family organization or professionally managed organization what are the values they are looking for, if you know what they are looking for, you can craft your resume to detail the attribute they are looking for  and just mention the other ones.

Some organization will look for family values, environment where you have grown. How long you stick with your jobs. How much your performance has encouraged retention rather than attrition in your jobs.  How you have worked for the developing and encouraging leadership and entrepreneurial qualities in the people reporting to you. W Mention the situations where you have allowed diligence, controlled discretion, and your ability to manage crisis & resolve problems.

Some organization will concentrate on professional deliverables. They will not mind a little attrition for achieving high growth curve. They will see how fast you have grown in your profession. They will also be interested in your money curve. For such organizations concentrate  on3deliveries and professional aspects only.

Your technical attributes have to match the requirements of the prospective organization. Your expertise in a programme they are not using is of no consequence; instead give detailed information about the small knowledge you have about the programmes or software they are using. However you can detail points which show you as a fast learner with high degree of adaptability.

Once you know what an organization requires or what is relevant for them, take it from your master and include it in your crafted resume.

Include some discussion buttons in the form of bullet points.  This will include information about your work attributes and achievements and would create curiosity and trigger discussion during interview. It would give an opportunity for you to give more information, and convince them better. Each button should not be more than one line.


Your resume should be strictly need based and should have information related to job and organization requirements.

 It is always better to be honest with your information. That will allow you to be relaxed in the interview as honesty doe not need any depending.  
If your attributes do not match job requirements, it is better not to send your job application. There is no point piling up rejections .rejections result in dejection and may negatively impact you preparation for other job where you have better chances.     

If you are not satisfied with the position, pay and perks offered, do not apply for the job. It would   result in permanently shutting a door on you, and may influence other doors also.    


Finally I would like to state that resume only helps to mirror your abilities, it cannot create them. Your high aspirations should be always be backed by past performance. In case you are able to secure a job with structure of resume, do write to me. So that it would be an encouragement to others.

Please do not send the resume to me, I do not have the time to critique and evaluate individual resume.  

In case you already have a winning resume, that has successfully got you jobs stick with it. You don’t need to change. In case your organization or education institution  wants me to conduct a workshop on this subject, As per my availability I can travel anywhere in India and conduct workshops on this subject.

Best wishes, for your next job,


Shyamsunder Panchavati  

Please also read Shyam's related article..........

You can Ace a job Interview in India with a Balanced Quotient Factor. Yes definitely you can…..


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